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Which Indian has won most Grand Slams?

Published at :January 27, 2024 at 11:46 PM
Modified at :February 14, 2024 at 1:54 PM
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Sahaj Nair

Rohan Bopanna won India’s most recent tennis major in 2024.

In India, the sport of tennis has always been associated as the one for the elite. It wasn’t until a few Indian tennis players started to make their impression at the international level that the interest in the sport started to catch up in India. Players like Ramanathan Krishnan, Ramesh Krishnan and Vijay Amritraj lay the foundation for the popularization of the sport. Players like Leander Paes, Mahesh Bhupathi and Sania Mirza built further on it to lead the charge to make the sport famous in India. The effort in which they were quite successful to an extent.

In this article we will be taking a look at the Indian players who have won one or more Grand Slams throughout their careers:

1. Leander Paes – 18 Grand Slams

First on the list is Leander Paes, the most successful Indian player in the sport, winning a total of 14 Grand Slams across his career. Paes has won eight Grand Slams in the men’s doubles category and 10 in mixed doubles. Hailing from Kolkata, Paes began his career as a singles player. He won the historic bronze medal in the 1996 Atlanta Games. The medal back then was India’s first individual medal in the Olympics since 1952.

Paes’ career took off after he shifted his focus onto the doubles category and became a specialized doubles player afterwards. The Paes-Bhupathi (Mahesh Bhupathi) combination became one of the most dynamic pairs on the court in the late 90s. In 1998, the pair reached the semi-finals of three Grand Slams. The following year, the pair went on to reach the finals of all four Grand Slams.

They became the first Indian pair to win the French Open in. Leander Paes capped the successful year with a double-title victory at Wimbledon. He won both mixed doubles (with Lisa Raymond) and the men’s doubles with Bhupathi. In a career that has spanned 24 years, Paes has managed to etch his name in tennis history books as one of the greatest doubles players to have ever played the game.

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2. Mahesh Bhupathi – 12 Grand Slams

Next up on the list is India’s second most successful player, Mahesh Bhupathi. Bhupathi has won 12 Grand Slams over the course of his career. He was also the first Indian to win a Grand Slam when he won the French Open mixed doubles with Rika Hiraki in 1997. His major share of Grand Slam victories (8 out of 12) came in the mixed doubles category while his three out of four Grand Slam victories in the men’s doubles category came when he partnered with Leander Paes.

Bhupathi has won seven out of his eight mixed doubles titles with seven different partners. He teamed up with Sania Mirza and the pair won two titles – 2009 Australian Open and 2012 French Open.

3. Sania Mirza – 6 Grand Slams

The only Indian woman to have made her mark in the sport of tennis, Sania Mirza, is one of the best players to have played the sport of tennis for India. She achieved her highest singles career ranking of 27 in 2007 and has singles victories against major names in the sport like Svetlana Kuznetsova, Martina Hingis, Marion Bartoli and Victoria Azarenka amongst others.

Sania Mirza shifted her focus to the doubles category after a series of wrist injuries and ended up winning three Grand Slams each in women’s doubles and mixed doubles categories. All three of her women’s doubles titles came with Martina Hingis and two out of her three mixed doubles majors were partnering Mahesh Bhupathi. Sania also achieved the World No. 1 rankings in doubles on Aril 2015, becoming the first Indian to reach the pinnacle of WTA rankings. She also won four of her six Grand Slam titles around this period.

4. Rohan Bopanna – 2 Grand Slams

Fourth on the list is Rohan Bopanna, who has won two Grand Slams trophies so far in his career, the latest one at the age of 43. His first tennis major came at the French Open in 2017 in the mixed doubles category. Bopanna entered the French Open with Canadian Gabriela Dabrowski and won the title by defeating Anna-Lena Gronefeld and Robert Farah in the final to win the title, making him the fourth Indian in total to win a Grand Slam.

Seven years later having aged like fine wine, Bopanna tasted Slam glory yet again at the Australian Open 2024, where partnering Matthew Ebden, he defeated Italian duo Simone Bolelli/Andrea Vavassori 7-6(7-0), 7-5 to become the oldest Grand Slam champion at 43 years and 439 days old. In the same week that lifted the trophy at Melbourne Park, Bopanna also wrote another piece of history by becoming the oldest tennis player to be ranked World No. 1. He and Ebden became the top-ranked doubles pair in ATP rankings.

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