Serena Williams' ex-coach and Slam champion reveals Steffi Graf's lone career regret

Graf went down as one of the greatest players in tennis history as she won 22 Slams before turning 30.

by Dzevad Mesic
Serena Williams' ex-coach and Slam champion reveals Steffi Graf's lone career regret
© Getty Images Sport - Bob Martin

Former multiple Grand Slam champion Rennae Stubbs reveals Steffi Graf once admitted to her she was regretting not enjoying her wins more instead of constantly thinking about the next challenge and how to add more to her success. 

Graf, one of the greatest players in tennis history, won 22 Grand Slam titles in singles - the third most in women's tennis history, behind only Margaret Court (24) and Serena Williams (23). Very early in her career, Graf achieved massive success but her motivation always remained the highest possible and she was always hungry for more. 

Stubbs, who won four Grand Slams in women's doubles and two more Slams in mixed doubles, highlighted she is not comparing herself to Graf or Williams but added that she can relate to their mindset of constantly striving for more because she became way hungrier after lifting her first Grand Slam title. 

Rennae Stubbs and Steffi Graf
Rennae Stubbs and Steffi Graf© Getty Images Sport - Jamie Squire

Stubbs reveals Graf's lone regret

"Like if we lost in the semis or final, freaking disaster. Kind of similar to what Serena would feel when she started winning Grand Slams and losing in quarters, she was like what? And don’t worry everyone, I’m not comparing myself to Serena but when you want to be really great, you know, Serena, Steffi, Novak, Rafa, Roger, when you talk about the greats the last couple years, they want more. They’re never satisfied," Stubbs, who worked with Williams during the American's final tournament at the 2022 US Open, said on the Rennae Stubbs Tennis Podcast.

"And one of the stories that I always tell about Steffi Graf is that, Steffi told me in retirement she wished she had, that the only thing she regrets about her career is not enjoying the wins more. And I said, 'Yeah but you know you probably wouldn’t have been as great as you were.' I mean, she won 22 Grand Slams at the age of 29."

Steffi Graf
Steffi Graf© Getty Images Sport - Bob Martin

To this day, Graf remains the only tennis player to have won each Grand Slam tournament at least four times. When Graf retired, she was just 30 and ranked at No. 3 in the world.

Serena Williams Steffi Graf