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The Most Famous


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This page contains a list of the greatest Croatian Tennis Players. The pantheon dataset contains 1,148 Tennis Players, 28 of which were born in Croatia. This makes Croatia the birth place of the 12th most number of Tennis Players behind Italy and Sweden.

Top 10

The following people are considered by Pantheon to be the top 10 most legendary Croatian Tennis Players of all time. This list of famous Croatian Tennis Players is sorted by HPI (Historical Popularity Index), a metric that aggregates information on a biography’s online popularity. Visit the rankings page to view the entire list of Croatian Tennis Players.

Photo of Nikola Pilić

1. Nikola Pilić (1939 - )

With an HPI of 57.79, Nikola Pilić is the most famous Croatian Tennis Player.  His biography has been translated into 22 different languages on wikipedia.

Nikola "Niki" Pilić (born 27 August 1939) is a Croatian former professional tennis player who competed for SFR Yugoslavia. He was one of the Handsome Eight. Pilić was ranked world No. 6 in January 1968 and world No. 7 for 1967 by Lance Tingay of The Daily Telegraph.

Photo of Goran Ivanišević

2. Goran Ivanišević (1971 - )

With an HPI of 52.68, Goran Ivanišević is the 2nd most famous Croatian Tennis Player.  His biography has been translated into 46 different languages.

Goran Ivanišević (Croatian pronunciation: [ɡǒran iʋanǐːʃeʋitɕ]; born 13 September 1971) is a Croatian former professional tennis player and current coach. He is the only player to win a Wimbledon singles title as a wildcard. He achieved this in 2001 while ranked world No. 125, after being runner-up at Wimbledon in 1992, 1994 and 1998. Ivanišević's career-high singles ranking was world No. 2, achieved in July 1994. He coached Marin Čilić from September 2013 to July 2016, leading Čilić to his only major title to date at the 2014 US Open. He has been coaching Novak Djokovic since 2019. Ivanišević was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2020.

Photo of Željko Franulović

3. Željko Franulović (1947 - )

With an HPI of 46.48, Željko Franulović is the 3rd most famous Croatian Tennis Player.  His biography has been translated into 16 different languages.

Željko Franulović (Croatian pronunciation: [ʒêːʎko franǔːloʋitɕ]; born 13 June 1947) is a Croatian former tennis player who competed for SFR Yugoslavia and has since had a long career in tennis management. He has been the Monte-Carlo Masters tournament director since 2005.Whilst his career-high ATP singles ranking was world No. 6, the ATP rankings were installed after his 1969–1971 heyday – Franulović was ranked inside the top 20 in both 1970 and 1971, reaching as high as world No. 8 in March 1971. Finalist of the 1970 French Open and winner in Monte Carlo the same year.

Photo of Ivo Karlović

4. Ivo Karlović (1979 - )

With an HPI of 46.18, Ivo Karlović is the 4th most famous Croatian Tennis Player.  His biography has been translated into 38 different languages.

Ivo Karlović (Croatian pronunciation: [ǐːʋo kâːrloʋitɕ]; born 28 February 1979) is a former Croatian professional tennis player. His height of 211 cm (6 ft 11 in) makes him the joint tallest ranked tennis player in history, along with Reilly Opelka. He has won eight ATP singles titles between 2007 and 2016. He is a serve-and-volleyer and officially held the record for the fastest serve recorded in professional tennis, measured at 251 km/h (156 mph), before being surpassed unofficially by Samuel Groth in 2012, and officially by John Isner in 2016. In his prime, he was considered one of the best servers on tour, and held the all-time record for career aces with 13,728 (not including Davis Cup) before the record was broken by John Isner on July 1 2022. This makes him one of only five players in history to surpass 10,000 aces. His height enables him to serve with high speed and unique trajectory.

Photo of Goran Prpić

5. Goran Prpić (1964 - )

With an HPI of 41.52, Goran Prpić is the 5th most famous Croatian Tennis Player.  His biography has been translated into 20 different languages.

Goran Prpić (born 4 May 1964) is a Croatian tennis coach and former professional tennis player, who played for SFR Yugoslavia and Croatia.

Photo of Iva Majoli

6. Iva Majoli (1977 - )

With an HPI of 40.28, Iva Majoli is the 6th most famous Croatian Tennis Player.  Her biography has been translated into 33 different languages.

Iva Majoli-Marić (born 12 August 1977) is a former professional tennis player from Croatia who played for both Yugoslavia and Croatia. She upset Martina Hingis to win the women's singles title at the French Open in 1997. Majoli also won seven other singles titles and one doubles title during her career. She reached a career-high singles ranking of world No. 4, in February 1996.

Photo of Mario Ančić

7. Mario Ančić (1984 - )

With an HPI of 38.67, Mario Ančić is the 7th most famous Croatian Tennis Player.  His biography has been translated into 34 different languages.

Mario Ančić (Croatian pronunciation: [mâːrio âːntʃitɕ]; born 30 March 1984) is a Croatian former professional tennis player who currently works as a private equity vice president in New York City. He won three singles titles and five doubles titles. His career-high singles ranking came during the 2006 ATP Tour, when he reached world no. 7. Ančić helped Croatia to win the 2005 Davis Cup and at the Athens Olympic Games in 2004, he and Ivan Ljubičić won a bronze medal in doubles for Croatia. As a teenager making his Grand Slam debut at the 2002 Wimbledon Championships, he defeated seventh-seeded Roger Federer. His best performance at Grand Slams came at the 2004 Wimbledon Championships, when he reached the semifinals. During 2007 and 2008, infectious mononucleosis and minor injuries forced him to miss many major events, and his ranking dropped from No. 9 in January 2007 to No. 135 in January 2008.

Photo of Jelena Dokic

8. Jelena Dokic (1983 - )

With an HPI of 36.76, Jelena Dokic is the 8th most famous Croatian Tennis Player.  Her biography has been translated into 39 different languages.

Jelena Dokic (Serbian: Јелена Докић, romanized: Jelena Dokić; pronounced [jɛ̌lɛna dokit͡ɕ]; born 12 April 1983) is an Australian tennis coach, commentator, writer, and former professional tennis player. Her highest ranking as a tennis player was world No. 4, in August 2002. She won WTA Tour events on all surfaces during her career. In the 1999 Wimbledon Championships the 16-year-old Dokic achieved one of the biggest upsets in tennis history, beating Martina Hingis 6–2, 6–0. This remains the only time the women's world No. 1 has ever lost to a qualifier at Wimbledon. Dokic went on to reach the quarterfinals of that competition, only her second Grand Slam championship. Dokic rapidly ascended through the world rankings after her Wimbledon breakthrough, but her time in the world elite was beset by off-court struggles. Her relationship with her outspoken father and coach Damir Dokić, on whose advice she switched allegiance to the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in November 2000, was the subject of much media speculation over many years. She switched back to Australia in 2005, and accused her father of physical and mental abuse in her 2017 autobiography Unbreakable. Dokic made a serious return to tennis in 2008 and finished 2009 back in the world top 100, but thereafter struggled badly with form and injuries, and ceased playing professionally in 2014.

Photo of Ajla Tomljanović

9. Ajla Tomljanović (1993 - )

With an HPI of 36.12, Ajla Tomljanović is the 9th most famous Croatian Tennis Player.  Her biography has been translated into 27 different languages.

Ajla Tomljanović ( EYE-lə təm-YAH-nə-vitch; Croatian: [âjla tomʎǎːnoʋitɕ]; born 7 May 1993) is a Croatian-Australian professional tennis player. She has won four singles and three doubles titles on the ITF Circuit. On 31 October 2022, she reached a career-high singles ranking of world No. 33. On 5 January 2015, she peaked at No. 47 in the doubles rankings. Tomljanović was an accomplished junior player, having won the 2009 Australian Open girls' doubles title with Christina McHale. She reached a combined career-high junior ranking of world No. 4, on 30 March 2009. Before 2014, Tomljanović played for her country of birth, Croatia. She began competing for Australia at the 2014 US Open after obtaining permanent residency in Australia. For the next four years she was required to represent Croatia at all non-Grand Slam events, until she was granted Australian citizenship in January 2018, allowing her to represent the country at all events on the WTA Tour.

Photo of Sabrina Goleš

10. Sabrina Goleš (1965 - )

With an HPI of 34.52, Sabrina Goleš is the 10th most famous Croatian Tennis Player.  Her biography has been translated into 15 different languages.

Sabrina Goleš (born 3 June 1965) is a former Croatian tennis player who competed for SFR Yugoslavia.

Pantheon has 28 people classified as tennis players born between 1939 and 1997. Of these 28, 28 (100.00%) of them are still alive today. The most famous living tennis players include Nikola Pilić, Goran Ivanišević, and Željko Franulović. As of April 2022, 3 new tennis players have been added to Pantheon including Željko Franulović, Dušan Vemić, and Bernarda Pera.

Living Tennis Players

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Newly Added Tennis Players (2022)

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