These females have produced some of the most memorable matches on the grass courts in London.

The Wimbledon Championships is the world’s oldest tennis tournament and is widely regarded as the most prestigious. It has been held since 1877 and is the only Grand Slam that does not conduct night matches.

The ongoing Wimbledon tournament is the 135th edition of the tournament, with Novak Djokovic and Ashleigh Barty the defending gentlemen’s and ladies’ champions.

Over the years the competition has witnessed some of the most entertaining, hard-fought, gripping matches, and here are five of the best ladies’ singles matches to have been played at the grass Major.

5) Steffi Graf vs Arantxa Sanchez Vicario [1995]

Steffi Graf and Arantxa Sanchez Vicario traded the World No. 1 rank six times in 1995, even before their meeting in the Wimbledon final. There was nothing much to stand out in the match until the third set, where at 5-5 Vicario was serving to take a 6-5 lead. The 11th game lasted 20 minutes and had 13 deuces, with Graf eventually breaking serve on the 32nd point of the game and then holding serve to complete a 4-6, 6-1, 7-5 victory. It was Graf’s sixth Wimbledon title and 19th Grand Slam title overall.

4) Steffi Graf vs Gabriella Sabbatini [1991]

Top seed and World No. 1 Steffi Graf faced Argentine 2nd seed Gabriella Sabbatini in the 1991 Wimbledon final. There was little to separate both players, who made it to the final without losing a single set.

They split the first two sets. Sabbatini then had the opportunity to serve out the match on two occasions but she squandered her chances. The resilient Graf did just enough to clinch the set, and the final, with a 6-4, 3-6, 8-6 scoreline.

Graf and Sabatini first met in 1985 and by the end of 1987 had met a total of eleven times, Graf winning all of them. Sabatini then went on to defeat Graf 11 times in the next 21 matches, before Sabatini lost the final eight matches they contested.

3) Martina Navratilova vs Zina Garrison [1990]

Martina Navratilova remains one of the sport’s greatest players. She made and broke records aplenty, but cared very little for them. The one record she always vocally spoke about was having the most Wimbledon singles titles.

She won her first Wimbledon title in 1978 and her eighth in 1987, which tied the record set by Helen Wills Moody in 1938. Navratilova then lost in the final to Steffi Graf in 1988 and 1989, and many considered that her best days were behind her.

She proved everyone wrong the following year, winning the 1990 Wimbledon crown for her record ninth title, and did so with one of the most dominating performances the grass courts of London have ever seen. The 1990 title was Navratilova’s final Major title, which also made her the then oldest woman to win a Grand Slam singles trophy.

2) Venus Williams v Lindsay Davenport [2005]

Before her younger sister Serena burst onto the scene, Venus Williams was the main attraction on the women’s circuit. However, in 2005, Venus was not at her best. She was dumped out of the French Open by little-known Bulgarian Sesil Karatantcheva and went down the rankings. At SW19, not many gave her a chance to compete for the title.

Venus diligently went about her business and the semifinals, where defending champion Maria Sharapova awaited her. The Russian was dispatched 6-2, 6-1 with ease, surprising many.

She took on American compatriot Lindsay Davenport in the final, which turned out to be quite the tussle. Venus had reached the final without dropping a set, but Davenport stunned her by taking the first set 6-4. The two greats fought hard in the second set, which was clinched by Venus in the tie-break. In the third and final set, Venus did just enough to take the match, and the title, with a 4–6, 7–6, 9–7 win. 

1) Martina Navratilova vs Chris Evert [1978]

Martina Navratilova and Chris Evert have had one of the most well-documented rivalries in the sport. Both players won 18 Grand Slam Singles titles each, with Navratilova considered unbeaten on grass and Evert holding that reputation on clay.

Both players met in the 1978 final, with the 23-year-old Evert having won the title in 1974 and 1976 while Navratilova was yet to win a Grand Slam title. Evert was cruising to victory in the second set having won the first comfortably when Navratilova saved three break points in the second set to serve it out and take the set 6-4. Navratilova then won 12 of the last 13 points to win the third set 7-5 and win 2-6, 6-4, 7-5, and with that her maiden Grand Slam title.

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