Wimbledon 2019 is upon us. There are tennis players whose names will be inextricably linked to the history of the London Slam. These players have marked the men's singles at the All England Club, winning epic matches and winning the love and support of fans and the crowd.
William Renshaw, the winner of seven titles (1881-1886 and 1889), held the record of titles won in men's singles until the 90s and the arrival of Pete Sampras, who equalled his record. Record which was then even surpassed by another champion ...
Reginald and Lawrance Doherty dominated the tournament between the late 1800s and early 1900s. Reginald won the editions from 1897 to 1900, while Lawrance won from 1902 to 1906. Both won four consecutive editions of the tournament, besides being great champions in men's doubles.
Before the First World War, it was Anthony Wilding the ruler of Wimbledon, for four consecutive editions (1910-1913). After the war, Church Road lawns saw many champions compete for the title. Bill Tilden first, then the arrival of the Frenchmen, who, with René Lacoste (1925 and 1928), Henri Cochet (1927 and 1929) and Jean Borotra (1924 and 1926), dominated the London scene for six years, corresponding to that which Suzanne Lenglen did in the women's singles.
Fred Perry was the English hero, Wimbledon's last British winner before Andy Murray's triumph, 77 years later. After the Second World War, the tournament did not have a real ruler, at least until Rod Lavar (1961,1962, 1968, 1969) and then Bjorn Borg, winner of five consecutive titles from 1976 to 1980.
Borg gave birth to a great rivalry with Jimmy Connors and John McEnroe, who respectively won the title twice (1974 and 1982) and three times (1981, 1983 and 1984). From the mid-80s until 1993 there were the exploits of Boris Becker (1985, 1986 1989), Stefan Edberg (1988 and 1990) and Andre Agassi (1992).
104 years after Renshaw's last triumph, Pete Sampras began his rule at Wimbledon, which culminated with the seventh title he won in 2000, exactly 111 years after the seventh and final Ranshaw title. The tale of Goran Ivanisevic (which also inspired the 2004 Wimbledon movie with Paul Bettany and Kirsten Dunst) was the prelude of the beginning of Roger Federer's era.
The Swiss Maestro has linked his name to Wimbledon; he first equalled the record of Renshaw and Sampras, winning the seventh title in 2012, then breaking the record in 2017, winning his eighth Championships title against Marin Cilic (absolute record in men's singles in Church Road).
In the middle there was time for the other giants of this tennis era: Rafael Nadal won two editions of the tournament (2008 and 2010), Novak Djokovic won four titles (2011, 2014, 2015, 2018) and Andy Murray made happy Great Britain in 2013, bringing a tennis player of Her Majesty to win the title 77 years after Fred Perry, to then repeat his success in 2016.