Tennis is now a part of Olympics Games program as a full medal sport since the 1988 and has been played in every Olympic Games since then. After being a part of Summer Olympic games in the inaugural 1896 game, the tournament was scrapped due to disagreement between the International Lawn Tennis Federation and the International Olympic Committee due to federation allowing the amateur players to compete.
In Olympic Games the lawn for Tennis tournament keeps on changing. In 1984 the tournament was played hard court for every game. In 1992, however the Olympics and in the 2012 Olympics the court was kept of grass. Some players are good at playing clay courts and others prefer hard court and therefore it keeps on changing.
In 2012, tennis tournament in Olympics was held in London at the All England Club in Wimbledon from 28 July to August 5th. This was the first Olympics tournament that was played on the grass court after the re-inclusion of tennis in the Olympics. International Olympics Committee and the International Tennis Federation organised as well as supervised the tournament under the Association of Tennis professional tours. All matches of the tournament were played as best of three sets and finale was played as best of fives sets. In order to declare a winner tie-breaks were used in all the three sets , except during the finale of five sets.
Roger Federer and Juan Martin del Potro clashed against each other on August 2012 in the semi-finals on August 3, 2010 and played to break the tie for record 4 hours 26 minutes, scoring 19-17. Apart from being the longest singles tennis match in the history of the Olympics, it also set the record for being the longest single match in the Open era, outpacing the Nadal versus Novak Djokovic in the 2009 Madrid Masters that lasted for 4 hours 3 minutes.
William sisters created record in the tournament by winning the third gold medal in doubles and becoming the first players in male or female in tennis history to win four golds, doubles or singles by achieving the top spot in 2000, 2008 and 2012 along with Venus clinching away 2000 women’s singles and Serena winning 2012 medal in singles.
Britain superstar Andy Murray won the gold by defeating Roger Federer in three sets of 6–2, 6–1, 6–4. Argentine Tennis sensation Del Potro clinched the Bronze medal defeating Djokovic by 7-5, 6-4.
Winners (Women’s singles)
Women singles was held at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in Wimbledon from 28 July to 4 August 2012. It would be unfair to mention the biggest upset of the tournament that was created by Chinese Tennis player Li Na who defeated Wimbledon finalist and Polish International Tennis sensation Agnieszka Radwańska in three close but straight sets.
Serena Williams, American professional tennis player and Russian tennis heartthrob Maria Sharapova played into the finals for their Career Golden Slam. Williams won the medal and became only the second women to win Career Golden Slam after Steffi Graf. Not only this, William also got the honour of becoming first tennis player, male or female, to hold a career Golden Slam in both singles and doubles. Sharapova was the silver medallist and Belarus Tennis player Victoria Azarenka won the Bronze medal
American star brothers Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan took home the Gold medal in the tournament, winning over France’s Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Michaël Llodra. Bryan brothers have achieved the Golden Slam, only the second men’s double team to achieve the feat.
Serena Williams and Venus Williams once again defended their titles in the tournament by defeating Czech Republic’s Andrea Hlaváčková and Lucie Hradecká.
History of Tennis at Olympics
Tennis (lawn tennis) was part of the inaugural 1896 Summer Olympic Games program, but since then it was dropped from the 1924 Summer Olympics onwards. Then, after two appearances as a demonstration sport, it returned back as a full medal sport in the 1988 Summer Olympics and has been played in every edition of the Games since then on. In 1896, 1900, 1904, 1988, and 1992, semifinal losers were given bronze medals. Other than these years, a play-off match for the bronze medal was staged. From the 2004 Athens Olympics onwards results of the Olympics count towards both the ATP and WTA world rankings.
Events of Tennis at Olympics
Tennis was first time contested as a Summer Olympic sport in the 1896 Games which were held in Athens. In the inaugural event, only 2 tournaments were played: men’s singles and men’s doubles. Women were only allowed in beginning to compete in singles and mixed doubles tennis events at the Olympic Games in 1900. Between the era of 1928 and 1988, tennis was not included as an official Olympic program. However Demonstration tennis events took place twice, first in 1968 and later in 1984. It was reinstated as a medal sport in 1988.
Record Holders of Tennis at Olympics
Kathleen McKaneGodfree is the all-time record holder for having most medals in tennis at Olympics, with one gold, two silvers, and two bronzes medals and Reginald Doherty and Venus Williams are the all-time record holders for having most Olympic Tennis gold medals with having three gold medals a piece. Four tennis players have yet earned four medals: Doherty (who sits on top of the table for overall medals table with having 3 gold and 1 bronze), Charles Dixon with one gold, one silver, two bronze, Arantxa Sánchez Vicario and Gunnar Setterwall both with two silver, two bronze medals. There are 8 Americans who have earned two or more gold medals; while a further 10 athletes from other countries have achieved this particular feat, including 6 from Great Britain and 2 from France.
Tennis is a game in which we regard a player’s talent without taking into account their height. Who notices height when they play real good tennis! Tallest and shortest tennis players hold records in tennis for their height. Here are the shortest and tallest players male and female players of tennis:
Shortest male/female tennis players
Philippine’s Felicisimo Ampon is the shortest player who played in the history of tennis. He was 4 ft. 11 inches tall. He appeared in 1952, 1953 French Open, 1949, 1950 and 1953 Wimbledon and in 1948, 1949, 1950 and 1952 US Open. He was considered to be the best Filipino tennis player of his time. The shortest woman to play Wimbledon was C.G. Hoahing who was just 4 ft. 9 inches tall. She was a British player who played in the 1930s.
Tallest male/female tennis players
The tallest man who played in tennis history is Ivo Karlović, a 6 ft 10 inches tall man. The Croatian player started his professional career in 2000. The currently ranked 41 player has achieved a highest ranking of 14 so far in singles. In doubles, he reached the 14, as well. The tallest women in tennis history were USA’s Lindsay Ann Davenport and Russia’s Elena Bovina. Both players are 6 ft. 2.5 inches tall. Davenport started her career in 1993 and has a highest ranking of no. 1 in singles so far and she had no. 1 ranking in doubles too. She has won three Grand Slams and one Olympics gold medal. Bovina started her career in 1998 and had a top ranking of 14 in singles and the same in doubles. However there is a new tallest female player Eva Hrdinova with a height of 6’3.
In the current era, Isner of America is considered to be one of the tallest with 6’9 height.