Playing tennis is by no means an easy task. The sport requires a player to be strong in several aspects of the game, which has several dimensions. Moreover, apart from the physical strength that tennis demands, mental strength is equally important.
The most important part in tennis is the service. The serve is what gets the points started, and a player with dominant service games, are expected to be have an upper hand on any service. Contrary to what most people think, a fast serve does not necessarily make a ‘good serve.’ It depends on several things like the bounce, spin, and the area of the court it is served in.
In tennis, a player gives it his all in his first serve, and is more cautious in his second serve. As a result, the second serves are generally slower as compared to the former, because of the risk of a double fault.
We have seen several tennis players who have a dominating serve up their sleeve. In this article, we will have a look at 10 Greatest Servers Of All Time.
10 Greatest Servers Of All Time
Almost all tennis fans who have followed the sport in the past two decades, have heard the name ‘Ivo Karlovic.’ The giant 6 feet 11 inch Croatian has one of the most lethal serves in the game. Even at the age of 42, he is going strong and competing on the professional tour.
Karlovic has competed in 690 matches in his tennis career, and has served 13,653 aces. Can you believe that? That makes it almost 20 aces per match. He has won 82.73 points on his first serve, and has won 92.03% of his service games. Karlovic is absolutely ruthless on hard courts, as he has served 8,609 aces on this surface itself. Ivo Karlovic’s fastest serve was clocked at 251 km/h in a David Cup encounter in 2011.
John Isner is another tall American, who has a huge serve in his armory. The experienced campaigner has 12,582 serves in his career so far, and if he continues playing for a few more plays, one can expect him to overtake Karlovic. He averages about 18 aces per match and has won about 92% of his points on first serve. Isner’s fastest serve was 253 km/h recorded at Davis Cup in 2016. Isner served a record 113 aces during his 3-day marathon battle against Nicolas Mahut at Wimbledon 2010.
Roger Federer does not have a huge serve like John Isner and Ivo Karlovic. But the Swiss maestro has a unique technique and incredible skill, which make him one of the finest serves of the game till date. The 39-year old has 11,372 aces up his sleeve, and averages about 8 aces per match. He has 7,116 serves on hard courts itself, and just about 1600 aces on clay courts. Federer has won 88.80% of his service games, and has won 77.34% of his points on first serve. During his peak year in 2006, Roger Federer won 90.15% of his service games and claimed three Grandslam titles.
A surprise name on this list is Feliciano Lopez. The left-handed Spaniard has a pretty relaxed served, but he makes sure that he gets it right almost every time. He has served 9,896 aces during his career, and averages about 11 aces per match. Lopez has won 76.14% of his points on first serve, and has won about 84% of his service games.
Sam Querrey has served 8,406 aces in his 662 matches so far, and averages about 13 aces per match. During his peak year in 2017, the American recorded 742 aces in just 55 matches, which includes 192 aces on grass courts alone. Querrey has won 84.86% of his service games. Out of all surfaces, Querrey seems to love serving on the grass courts and he has the fourth most aces on this surface among the active players on tour.
Andy Roddick was one of the most lethal servers of the ball. The American served 9,067 aces during his career and most of them came on hard courts, where he has 6,429 aces to his name. Roddick won 79% of his points on first serve, and won an incredible 90% of his service games.
Milos Raonic has served 8,081 aces in his just 523 matches and is another big server of the tennis ball. The Canadian has won 81.46% of his points on first serve, which is an incredible stat to say the least. Raonic has won 91.22% of his service games and is ranked third among the active players in this aspect. He has served 5,633 aces on hard courts, and had 549 aces on this surface alone in 2016.
Kevin Anderson, the tall South African has served 7,260 aces in 572 matches so far, which makes it almost more than 11 aces per match. Anderson has won 76.90% of his points on first serve, and 86.62% of his service games. The South African served 208 aces during his the 2018 grass court season, where he reached the finals of Wimbledon. He had 738 aces to his name in 2017, which was one of his most successful seasons on tour.
Marin Cilic has served 6,990 aces during his career, and averages about 10 aces a match. The tall Croatian has won 76.64% of his points on first serve, and has won about 83% of his service games. One time Grandslam champion, Cilic served 744 aces in 2014, when he won the US Open title. Again in 2017, he served 724 aces, as he managed to finish as the runner up at Wimbledon that year.
Novak Djokovic is in the same league as that of Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, as the trio rely more on their groundstrokes to win points. However, the Serbian has managed to hit 6,028 aces during his career, and averages about 6 aces per match. Djokovic has won 73.29% of his points on first serve, and has claimed 85.70% of his service games. His most impressive record is on the grass courts, where has won 89.16 of his service games.
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