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anointedone
07-14-2007, 12:01 PM
Whenever I hear talk of who is the greatest women player of all time I hear Navratilova, Graf, Evert, as the ones brought up. Why is Margaret Court not brought up more? She has the most slams ever in singles, the most slams ever in doubles. She is one of only 3 women to ever manage the Calander Slam, something neither Navratilova or Evert managed. She probably faced better overall competition then any of Evert, Graf, or Navratilova. She faced not only Billie Jean King, but Bueno and Goolagong as well.

I am not saying Court should definitely be who you pick as the best ever, or that she is even neccessarily who my pick is. Just funny that she isnt brought up as being a serious option more.

Not to mention she ended her rivalry with King 22-10. Which other great has dominated their fellow all-time great rival, their greatest rival, to that extent.

FiveO
07-14-2007, 12:08 PM
In "the books" of most people aware of her existence she is considered.

In my book the three female G.O.A.T.s are, in no particular order:

Court
Navratilova
Graf

anointedone
07-14-2007, 12:17 PM
In "the books" of most people aware of her existence she is considered.

In my book the three female G.O.A.T.s are, in no particular order:

Court
Navratilova
Graf

So do you think most people just dont know enough about her great career since she was too far in the past, and being a non-American who is a bit too far in the past makes her even more obsolete over here?

tomzo22
07-14-2007, 12:42 PM
I have never heard of her....

krprunitennis2
07-14-2007, 12:45 PM
Oooh I saw the movie: When "Billie Beat Bobby." Is that how she looked like?

FiveO
07-14-2007, 12:48 PM
So do you think most people just dont know enough about her great career since she was too far in the past, and being a non-American who is a bit too far in the past makes her even more obsolete over here?


Like most other sports, many of today's players don't even know the shoulders of the giants they stand on.

max
07-14-2007, 03:13 PM
This is really a very good question!

theace21
07-14-2007, 04:24 PM
Lack of media attention. When Billie Jean King came along, she was all about promotion of herself and tennis (really women sports).

You never even hear from Court anymore.

TennisandMusic
07-14-2007, 04:40 PM
Also she won many of her majors before the open era right? I think that's a fair part in diminishing her "stature."

anointedone
07-14-2007, 04:54 PM
Also she won many of her majors before the open era right? I think that's a fair part in diminishing her "stature."

That is true, but I dont think that means as much for the women. The men seemed much more prone to the players who were still the best turning pro and being excluded from the Grand Slams. Well there were no women who were "pro" at the time who were better then her. That open tennis thing seemed to mean more for the guys then the girls.

urban
07-14-2007, 11:39 PM
For some reasons, Court wasn't really liked by the tennis media, especially not by the US media, who had their darlings in King or Evert (I am not anti-American in any way). She is a bit the equivalent of Lendl in some ways.The British like Bellamy or Barrett had always great respect for Court, but the US writers and commentators described her style often as clumsy or slow or mechanical or so on. She was naturally shy, the complete opposition to the gracious Bueno or the extrovert King, who was adulated by the US media. Her sceptical position on womens lib, and later some comments about Navratilova did her no good in the press. In fact, with her athletic conditioning, she revolutionized womens tennis as much as Martina in the 80s, but recieved much less appreciation.

AndrewD
07-15-2007, 12:02 AM
#1. She wasn't American
#2. She wasn't cute
#3. She wasn't quotable
#4. She wasn't American.

Mad iX
07-15-2007, 01:16 AM
Even in Australia, almost nobody has heard of her.
All I know is that she has won the most slams.

Yours!05
07-15-2007, 02:27 AM
Even in Australia, almost nobody has heard of her.Are you meaning people in your age group? If so, what would that be?

diggler
07-15-2007, 04:39 AM
Margaret Court was so good that they named the tennis playing surface after her.

She would have to rank as one of the greatest. She was very athletic. As said before, she is not American and quite a while ago.

I think she is a hard core Christian nowadays.

They named one of the outside courts at the Australian Open after her.

It's a bit uneven. Rod Laver got the big arena, Vodafone the sponsor got the smaller indoor court and Margaret Cort got the next court.

Where does Seles rank by the way? Wasn't she beating Graf before the incident. Sorry to open a can of worms.

Warriorroger
07-15-2007, 05:19 AM
Court won eleven of her 24 GS finals of the same surfaces: grass, yet in Australia, where many of the toppplayers didn't go to. Navratilova mde the women's game fitter and faster, Steffi introduced the power game which Monica improved on on both sides.

Even without the stabbing Graf mastered all four surfaces. It is hard to rank Navratilova and Graf, both have achieved so much yet in different ways.

alwaysatnet
07-15-2007, 06:48 AM
Margaret Court Smith was about as charismatic as a can of tuna, despite her tennis excellence. If her career had been centered in New York instead of Australia her name would be much more famous.
But as one poster put it, she is a devout Christian and that has made her a pariah in some circles. She lost to Bobby Riggs and B.J. King didn't.
She doesn't seek the limelight.

All that being said, she should get a lot more attention than she does. Her record cannot be denied.

slice bh compliment
07-15-2007, 09:05 AM
Margaret Court was so good that they named the tennis playing surface after her...

Nice one. In light of this discovery, and with all respect to Mrs. Court, if I ever buy a house with a tennis court on property, I will look into a change in the vernacular.

Usually we try to resurface the Laver every 4 or 5 years.
I'm off to sweep the Budge, honey.
Yeah, there's nothin' like a cold beer or two after a nice warm afternoon on the Hoad.
Why don't all three of you come over. We've just got one Gonzalez at the house, so we can take turns playing singles, then end with a set of dubs.
You want to rollerblade on the Navratilova? Uh, no.
Honey, should we plant some ivy over by the Rosewall?

I think we all remember Mrs. Court, but the recency factor...the media...and public perception all play into this. AndrewD, you could be onto something with the American thing. The nerve of that lady to not hail from our shores.

Yours05, how are you, man!!?? Good you weighed in. We miss you around here.

AndrewD
07-15-2007, 04:29 PM
Even in Australia, almost nobody has heard of her.
All I know is that she has won the most slams.

Almost nobody? Sorry mate, the average Australian is no Rhodes Scholar but we aren't that stupid. Even the casual observer who knows nothing about tennis and doesn't care about the game, has heard of Margaret Court and Rod Laver (you could add Goolagong and Newcombe).

Anyway, rather than being willing to settle for "all I know is she won the most..", take 5 minutes out of your day and look her up on the internet/


TennisandMusic,

If we say that tennis went 'Open' in 1968 (it really didn't for the women), then Court won 11 singles majors - including the 1970 Grand Slam-, 10 doubles majors (1 win away from a Grand Slam in 1973, same year she won 3 of the 4 singles majors) and 7 mixed titles (she'd already won the Grand Slam in mixed in 1963 and 1965).

Slice,

Court should have been an icon of the women's movement as she was a working mother (was pregnant during the 73 season). However, she was too much the traditionalist and didn't fit the zeitgeist (didn't believe in women's lib or the pro tour). As a result, she was pushed to one side and happily forgotten by a press contingent that found Evert an easier story to sell to a public they don't trust.

It's a real shame as Court/ King (King and Court: sounds like a good name for a book) was always a better story than Ever-Navratilova. Sadly, no-one was smart enough to see it (King the anti-establishment heroine doing her best at the home of stuffiness- Wimbledon. Court, a traditionalist par excellence, excelling in the crazy world of late 60's, early 70's America. King, the egoist, sacrificing her career to push Evert through as the symbol of women's tennis. Court, the anti-libber, showing that women could have it all, by giving birth and returning to the tour).

Court's status isn't the fault of the American people but is due to most all of the tennis press, from the late 60's onwards, being American and ill-equipped to write about women's tennis (or women's sport) from a purely sporting angle. They needed nationalism or sex - Evert gave them both, Goolagong the latter.

The irony is that BJK, who was happy to push Evert, Goolagong and Navratilova (in the same way Kramer always talked up the guys on his tour and people took his comments to be lacking in bias), has greatly diminished her own achievements.

Yours!05
07-15-2007, 04:58 PM
Yes, the grass is for cows and who does wimbledon think it is threads help keep me awake this time of year, by Jingo.
Also like to make sure no-one speaks the truth about Molik's prospects. Keepin the dream alive.
Nice job with the eponyms. Accurate reflection of tennis history too, with more Aussies than Seppos.:D

Andrew, onya for never failing to remind about Court. Did you see Australian Story about Kenny Fletcher where she managed to make a couple of good stories dull?

anointedone
07-15-2007, 06:26 PM
Thanks so much for some of your answers. Some of you who maybe were alive back in the 60s or 70s, or atleast have researched that era of tennis and its characters more then me had some really insightful posts. I particularly loved reading AndrewD's. Very interesting.

FiveO
07-15-2007, 07:05 PM
Thanks so much for some of your answers. Some of you who maybe were alive back in the 60s or 70s, or atleast have researched that era of tennis and its characters more then me had some really insightful posts. I particularly loved reading AndrewD's. Very interesting.

Like Court, there are many players, male and female, whose accomplishments and stories are worth a read and remembering.

If you're interested in the women's game another story I'd recommend is that of American Maureen Connolly-Brinker.

Connolly's life reads like a Hollywood screenplay, in fact Hollywood did make a tv movie of her life in 1978 titled "Little Mo", Connolly's nickname which alluded to "Big Mo" the nickname of the USS Missouri, drawing a comparison between the powerful groundies of the diminutive American and the great guns of the legendary WWII era battleship. If you're not familiar with her story, I don't want to give it away. Her life and career are amazing and tragic and very much worth a read.

anointedone
07-15-2007, 10:54 PM
Like Court, there are many players, male and female, whose accomplishments and stories are worth a read and remembering.

If you're interested in the women's game another story I'd recommend is that of American Maureen Connolly-Brinker.

Connolly's life reads like a Hollywood screenplay, in fact Hollywood did make a tv movie of her life in 1978 titled "Little Mo", Connolly's nickname which alluded to "Big Mo" the nickname of the USS Missouri, drawing a comparison between the powerful groundies of the diminutive American and the great guns of the legendary WWII era battleship. If you're not familiar with her story, I don't want to give it away. Her life and career are amazing and tragic and very much worth a read.

Actually I am pretty familiar with Connolly's story. It is truly sad but inspiring all the same. However in the end it is all very sad. I never knew about a movie depicting her life though. If I saw that movie I would probably cry at some point though.

AndrewD
07-16-2007, 03:47 PM
Andrew, onya for never failing to remind about Court. Did you see Australian Story about Kenny Fletcher where she managed to make a couple of good stories dull?

Yes, saw that one. Gives you another reason why she was pushed into the background, doesn't it? Of course, her current vocation and recent comments are another couple of reasons why people are happy to forget her (especially at 'Tennis' magazine) and she's happy to be forgotten.

BTURNER
07-29-2007, 05:44 PM
Yes, the grass is for cows and who does wimbledon think it is threads help keep me awake this time of year, by Jingo.
Also like to make sure no-one speaks the truth about Molik's prospects. Keepin the dream alive.
Nice job with the eponyms. Accurate reflection of tennis history too, with more Aussies than Seppos.:D

Andrew, onya for never failing to remind about Court. Did you see Australian Story about Kenny Fletcher where she managed to make a couple of good stories dull?

LET'S NOT FORGET HER CLAY RECORD. 5 FRENCH TITLES (ONE BEATING EVERT) 3 ITALIAN, 2 GERMANS,

CEvertFan
07-29-2007, 08:38 PM
I would rank her 4th just behind Navratilova, Graf and Evert. The main reason for this is some of her 11 AO titles were played with very diminished fields and since she was Australian she ALWAYS played it in the 60s. Her GS count would probably not be nearly as high if the AO was played with a full field every year. You can look up some of the players she beat for the title and although there are a few elite players, there are also jouneywoman names there as well. I think that's why most people, including the experts have never put her as GOAT. Also I think that Navratilova served/vollied better, Evert could pass/lob and out rally her from the baseline at will (9-4) record over Margaret when Court was still considered to be in her prime and Graf was just more powerful and faster all around. Court's achievments are considerable though and she has one of the best doubles records around out of any player man or woman as well as winning the Grand Slam in singles in 1970 and a mixed doubles Grand Slam in 1965 with 3 different partners. She was also one of two women I know of, (Evonne Goolagong being the other), that came back and won a major after becoming a mother.

suwanee4712
07-30-2007, 09:19 AM
Of all the great champions, Margaret does tend to get the short end of the stick. I'm not sure why since she's a winner of the grand slam itself. I've never bought into the Australian Open thing, because she was winning the majority of slams during those years anyway.

During her run of titles down under, there were 4 different years where she won at least 3 of the 4 grand slam tournaments. And, of course, one of those years she won the grand slam itself. Out of her 11 titles, only 1960, 1961, and 1971 came in years where the Australian was the only slam that she won. And the 1971 title came at the expense of Evonne, who was Wimbledon champ that year.

I don't think a full field would've cut much into her stash of home titles. I think it's perfectly reasonable to expect that she would've won at 7 to 9 Australian titles anyway.

I have always put her at 4th behind Steffi, Martina, and Chris. But maybe that's because I saw a lot more of those 3 than I did Margaret. Think of it this way, Billie Jean as great as she was, might have won 4 or 5 more grand slams (equalling Martina and Chris) if it hadn't been for Margaret. At any rate, she deserves more credit than we give her.

Jack & Coke
07-31-2007, 05:39 AM
Margaret Court on Trans World Sport (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eDHuldWAOwc)

heartman
07-31-2007, 05:50 AM
Players and their accomplishments, from days gone by draw little attention these days. There's a reason she won so many titles - she was a damn good tennis player. Period. Comparisons with today's players are apples and oranges - racquet materials make them moot.

Margaret Court could do it all, however. Serve and volley, groundstroke, topspin, slice, chip - you name it, she'd mastered it. And, a competitor like few others.

sureshs
07-31-2007, 07:02 AM
Court probably even ranks above Navratilova.

But she was never very popular, from what I gather. She is a serious person, and quite "strict". I have watched an interview with her, and she did not have anything good to say about today's Australian female players - just that they have it too easy and don't work hard. Earlier in her career, she insulted Navratilova on the gay issue, without any provocation. Later, they got along. Now she is a preacher and says it is more important than winning Wimbledon. Of course, when she was winning Wimbledon, she was conveniently not a Reverend. So, I would believe Mother Teresa who did the good work since she was 17, but not her. All points towards a self-reinforcing kind of person who thinks she always knows what is right.