The Success and The Failures of Lefthanders in Sports
Petra Kvitova won the singles title at Wimbledon in 2011 and again in 2014. She ended the 2011 season as the #2 ranked player in the world, and she remained in the top ten through 2016. In December 2016 she suffered nerve and tendon injuries to her left hand during a robbery of her home, and did not play again until May 2017. She is has returned to top playing form and is currently ranked #12 in the world.
Angelique Kerber won her first tournament in 2012 and achieved the #5 ranking in 2012, and has been a major force in womens tennis since that time, She won singles titles at The Australian Open and at The US Open and at Wimbledon in 2018. She ended 2016 as the #1 ranked player in the world and ended 2018 as the #2 ranked. She has faltered since that time but is still ranked #26 on the WTA tour.
Ann Haydon-Jones won the French Open in 1961 and 1966, and Wimbledon in 1969, and is credited with 113 career singles titles in her career. She.was ranked among the top ten in women’s tennis from 1957 through 1963, and again from 1065 through 1970, reaching the rank of #2 in the world in 1967 and 1969.
Martina Navratilova won Singles Titles at the Australian Open in 1981, 1983, & 1985, the French Open in 1982, & 1984, Wimbledon in 1978, 1979, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, & 1990, and the US Open in 1983, 1984, 1986, & 1987. She also won a total of 31 Doubles Titles at these same “Grand Slam” events. She won a total of 167 World Tennis Association tournaments in her career, earned the # 1 ranking on July 10, 1978 and held that #1 ranking for five consecutive years.
Monica Seles won Singles Titles at the Australian Open in 1991, 1992, 1993 & 1996, the French Open in 1990, 1991 & 1992, and the US Open in 1991 & 1992. She won a total of 53 singles titles, achieved the #1 ranking on March 11, 1991 and held that ranking for most of the next two years. In the midst of a tournament on April 30, 1993, Seles was stabbed in the shoulder by a deranged fan. She recovered from her injuries and returned to competitive tennis nearly two years later. While she was still one of the best players on the tour, she never quite returned to the greatness she had attained before the attack.
All-Time Best Lefthanded Womens Tennis Players
Ilana Kloss turned pro in 1973 and reached #19 in singles in 1979. He had been ranked as the worlds’ #1 doubles player in 1976.
Dianne Fromholtz Balestrat turned pro in 1973 and reached #4 in singles in March 1979. She made the finals of the 1977 Australian Open for her best Grand Slam event finish.
Sylvia Hanika turned pro in 1977 and reached #5 in singles in Sept 1983. She reached the finals of the 1981 French Open for her best Grand Slam event finish.
Patty Schnyder turned pro in 1994 and reached #7 in singles in November 2005. She reached the finals of the 2004 Australian Open for her best Grand Slam event finish.
Other Notable Lefthanded Womens Tennis Players