The Most Famous


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This page contains a list of the greatest Czech Tennis Players. The pantheon dataset contains 1,148 Tennis Players, 55 of which were born in Czechia. This makes Czechia the birth place of the 7th most number of Tennis Players behind Spain and Germany.

Top 10

The following people are considered by Pantheon to be the top 10 most legendary Czech Tennis Players of all time. This list of famous Czech 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 Czech Tennis Players.

Photo of Ivan Lendl

1. Ivan Lendl (1960 - )

With an HPI of 70.76, Ivan Lendl is the most famous Czech Tennis Player.  His biography has been translated into 52 different languages on wikipedia.

Ivan Lendl (Czech pronunciation: [ˈɪvan ˈlɛndl̩]; born March 7, 1960) is a former professional tennis player from Czechoslovakia who later obtained American citizenship. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest tennis players of all-time. Lendl was ranked world No. 1 for 270 weeks and won 94 singles titles. He won eight major singles titles and was runner-up a joint record 11 times (tied with Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic), making him the first man to contest 19 major finals. Lendl also contested a record eight consecutive US Open finals, and won seven year-end championships. Lendl is the only male player in professional tennis history to have a match winning percentage of over 90% in five different years (1982, 1985, 1986, 1987, and 1989). He also had a comfortable head-to-head winning record against his biggest rivals, including a 21-15 record (7-3 in major matches) against John McEnroe, a 22-13 record (4-3 in major matches) against Jimmy Connors, and a 15-7 record (5-4 in major matches) against Mats Wilander.Lendl's dominance of his era was most evident at the year-end championships, which feature the eight best-ranked singles players. He holds a win-loss record at the event of 39-10, having contested the final an extraordinary nine consecutive times. His nine consecutive appearances in the final and three consecutive titles are records.Commonly referred to as the 'Father Of The Modern Game' and 'The Father Of The Inside Out Forehand', Lendl pioneered a new style of tennis; his game was built around his forehand, hit hard and flat, and his success is cited as a primary influence in popularizing the now-common playing style of aggressive baseline power tennis. After retirement, he became a tennis coach for several players; in particular, he helped Andy Murray win three major titles and reach the world No. 1 ranking.

Photo of Martina Navratilova

2. Martina Navratilova (1956 - )

With an HPI of 70.57, Martina Navratilova is the 2nd most famous Czech Tennis Player.  Her biography has been translated into 74 different languages.

Martina Navratilova (Czech: Martina Navrátilová [ˈmarcɪna ˈnavraːcɪlovaː] (listen); née Šubertová [ˈʃubɛrtovaː]; born October 18, 1956) is a Czechoslovakian and American former professional tennis player and coach. Widely considered among the greatest tennis players of all time, Navratilova won 18 Grand Slam singles titles, 31 major women's doubles titles, and 10 major mixed doubles titles, for a combined total of 59 major titles, marking the Open Era record for the most Grand Slam titles won by a single player. She reached the Wimbledon singles final 12 times, including for nine consecutive years from 1982 through 1990, and won the women's singles title at Wimbledon a record nine times (surpassing Helen Wills Moody's eight Wimbledon titles), including a run of six consecutive titles. Navratilova was WTA world No. 1 in singles for a total of 332 weeks, second behind Steffi Graf, and for a record 237 weeks in doubles, making her the only player, male or female, in history to have held the top spot in both singles and doubles for over 200 weeks. Navratilova is one of the three female tennis players, along with Margaret Court and Doris Hart, to have accomplished a Career Grand Slam in women's singles and doubles, and mixed doubles, called the career "Grand Slam Boxed Set". Navratilova, Margaret Court and Maureen Connolly share the record for the most consecutive major singles titles. She won her last major title in 2006, adding the mixed doubles crown at the 2006 US Open to her resume just a few weeks before her 50th birthday, 32 years after her first Major title in 1974. Originally from Czechoslovakia, she was stripped of her citizenship when, in 1975 at age 18, she asked the United States for political asylum and was granted temporary residence. At the time, Navratilova was told by the Czechoslovak Sports Federation that she was becoming too Americanized, and she should go back to school and make tennis secondary. Navratilova became a US citizen in 1981. On January 9, 2008, she reacquired Czech citizenship. She stated she has not renounced her U.S. citizenship nor does she plan to do so, and that reclaiming Czech nationality was not politically motivated. I love my birth country and the fact that it is now a free country and a true democracy. But my home is here, in the U.S. I have lived in America since 1975 and I intend to always live here. This is my home and it feels almost gratuitous to me that I have to affirm my love for the USA. I live here, I vote here, I pay my taxes here and yes, I will do my jury duty ... any reports stating I am leaving and most of all, denouncing my U.S. citizenship are simply not true and quite frankly, insulting.

Photo of Jaroslav Drobný

3. Jaroslav Drobný (1921 - 2001)

With an HPI of 65.86, Jaroslav Drobný is the 3rd most famous Czech Tennis Player.  His biography has been translated into 24 different languages.

Jaroslav Drobný (Czech pronunciation: [ˈjaroslav ˈdrobniː]; 12 October 1921 – 13 September 2001) was a World No. 1 amateur tennis and ice hockey champion. He left Czechoslovakia in 1949 and travelled as an Egyptian citizen before becoming a citizen of the United Kingdom in 1959, where he died in 2001. In 1954, he became the first and, to date, only player with African citizenship to win the Wimbledon Championships (aside from dual citizen Roger Federer, who holds South African citizenship but officially represents only Switzerland in sports).

Photo of Jan Kodeš

4. Jan Kodeš (1946 - )

With an HPI of 64.90, Jan Kodeš is the 4th most famous Czech Tennis Player.  His biography has been translated into 33 different languages.

Jan Kodeš (born 1 March 1946) is a Czech former tennis player who won three Grand Slam singles events in the early 1970s. His greatest success was achieved on the clay courts of the French Open played at the Stade Roland Garros. He won the singles title there in 1970, beating Željko Franulović in the final in straight sets, and again in 1971, this time defeating Ilie Năstase in the final in four sets. He also won Wimbledon on grass in 1973, although 13 of the top 16 players, and 81 players in total, did not play the tournament that year because of a boycott over the banning from Wimbledon of Nikola Pilić by the International Lawn Tennis Federation (ILTF). Kodeš beat home favorite Roger Taylor in the semifinals in five sets and Alex Metreveli in the final in three straight sets.Kodeš never played the Australian Open but he was twice the runner-up at the US Open, in 1971, losing to Stan Smith, and 1973 when he lost in five sets to John Newcombe.He reached his highest ATP ranking of world No. 5 in September 1973. During the open era, he won a total of nine top-level singles titles and 17 doubles titles. Kodeš was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1990. In 2013, he received the Czech Fair Play Award from the Czech Olympic Committee. He is an economics graduate of the Prague University.

Photo of Hedwiga Rosenbaumová

5. Hedwiga Rosenbaumová (1864 - 1939)

With an HPI of 61.11, Hedwiga Rosenbaumová is the 5th most famous Czech Tennis Player.  Her biography has been translated into 19 different languages.

Hedwiga Rosenbaumová (July 3, 1864 – July 31, 1939), also known as Hedwig Rosenbaum, was a tennis player who represented Bohemia. She won two bronze medals in tennis at the 1900 Summer Olympics in Paris, in the women's singles and the mixed doubles with Great Britain's Archibald Warden. She was the first woman to represent Bohemia at the Olympics.

Photo of Helena Suková

6. Helena Suková (1965 - )

With an HPI of 59.69, Helena Suková is the 6th most famous Czech Tennis Player.  Her biography has been translated into 32 different languages.

Helena Suková (Czech pronunciation: [ˈɦɛlɛna ˈsukovaː]) (born 23 February 1965) is a former professional tennis player from the Czech Republic. During her career, she won 14 Grand Slam doubles titles, 9 of them in women's doubles and 5 of them in mixed doubles. She also was a four-time Grand Slam singles runner-up and won 10 singles titles and 69 doubles titles.

Photo of Jana Novotná

7. Jana Novotná (1968 - 2017)

With an HPI of 58.99, Jana Novotná is the 7th most famous Czech Tennis Player.  Her biography has been translated into 49 different languages.

Jana Novotná (Czech pronunciation: [ˈjana ˈnovotnaː]; 2 October 1968 – 19 November 2017) was a professional tennis player from the Czech Republic. She played a serve and volley game, an increasingly rare style of play among women during her career.She won the women's singles title at Wimbledon in 1998 and was runner-up in three previous Grand Slam tournaments. Novotná also won 12 Grand Slam women's doubles titles (completing the Career Grand Slam twice), four Grand Slam mixed doubles titles, and three Olympic medals. She reached a career-high singles ranking of world No. 2 in 1997, and held the No. 1 ranking in doubles for 67 non-consecutive weeks.

Photo of Petr Korda

8. Petr Korda (1968 - )

With an HPI of 58.87, Petr Korda is the 8th most famous Czech Tennis Player.  His biography has been translated into 33 different languages.

Petr Korda (born 23 January 1968) is a Czech former professional tennis player. He won the 1998 Australian Open and was runner-up at the 1992 French Open, reaching a career-high ranking of No. 2 in February 1998. Korda tested positive for doping in July 1998 at Wimbledon, and was banned from September 1999 for 12 months, but he retired shortly before the ban.

Photo of Hana Mandlíková

9. Hana Mandlíková (1962 - )

With an HPI of 58.41, Hana Mandlíková is the 9th most famous Czech Tennis Player.  Her biography has been translated into 33 different languages.

Hana Mandlíková (born 19 February 1962) is a former professional tennis player from Czechoslovakia who later obtained Australian citizenship. During her career, she won four Grand Slam singles titles: the 1980 Australian Open, 1981 French Open, 1985 US Open, and the 1987 Australian Open. She was also the runner-up at four Grand Slam singles events, including the Wimbledon finals of 1981 and 1986, and won one Grand Slam women's doubles title, at the 1989 US Open with Martina Navratilova. Inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 1994, she is considered one of the greatest tennis players of all time.Mandlikova had a career-high singles ranking of No. 3, and was ranked in the world's Top 50 for 12 consecutive seasons (1978–89), including seven in the Top 10. She led Czechoslovakia to three consecutive Fed Cup titles from 1983–1985, and was only the third woman to win Grand Slam titles on grass, clay, and hard courts, joining Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova. She defeated both Evert and Navratilova on consecutive days to accomplish this feat at the 1985 US Open. She retired in 1990, and went on to coach Jana Novotná to the 1998 Wimbledon singles title and a career-high ranking of No. 2. She also served as the Czech Republic's Olympic and Fed Cup coach until 1996.

Photo of Karel Koželuh

10. Karel Koželuh (1895 - 1950)

With an HPI of 58.37, Karel Koželuh is the 10th most famous Czech Tennis Player.  His biography has been translated into 15 different languages.

Karel Koželuh (Czech: [ˈkarɛl ˈkoʒɛlux]; Hungarian: Kozeluh Károly [ˈkozɛluh ˈkaːroj]; 7 March 1895 – 27 April 1950) was a top Czech tennis, association football, and ice hockey player of the 1920s and 1930s. Koželuh never played in the major tournaments of amateur tennis but was an all-around athlete at the highest level.

Pantheon has 55 people classified as tennis players born between 1864 and 1999. Of these 55, 51 (92.73%) of them are still alive today. The most famous living tennis players include Ivan Lendl, Martina Navratilova, and Jan Kodeš. The most famous deceased tennis players include Jaroslav Drobný, Hedwiga Rosenbaumová, and Jana Novotná. As of October 2020, 1 new tennis players have been added to Pantheon including Karel Koželuh.

Living Tennis Players

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Deceased Tennis Players

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Newly Added Tennis Players (2020)

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