WHERE ARE THEY NOW? The biggest tennis stars of the 1990s
- The generation of tennis players that took the court in the 1990s is filled with legends.
- Tennis greats, such as Martina Navratilova, Andre Agassi, and Steffi Graf, were at the top of the ranks and helped pave the way for the generation that dominants the court today.
- Their success landed them in the halls of tennis history forever with some still being involved in the sport today.
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Roger Federer, Serena Williams, and Rafael Nadal may be the big names in tennis today, but there are always greats who pave the way for the future.
The generation before these stars hit the court is filled with legends, such as Andre Agassi, Steffi Graf, and Pete Sampras – all who dominated in the 1990s.
Their success landed them in the halls of tennis history forever with some still being involved in tennis today.
Below we take you through the biggest tennis stars from the 1990s and where they are today.
Jim Courier won four Grand Slam singles titles. He was the youngest man to reach the finals of all four Grand Slam singles tournaments, at the age of 22 years and 11 months.
Since retiring in 2000, Courier has been a broadcaster for the Tennis Channel, USA Network, NBC Sports, and many others. He is the leading commentator for the Australian Open on the host broadcast station since 2005.
Steffi Graf won 22 Grand Slam singles titles, which ties her for third all-time. She is also one of two players to win three Grand Slam titles in one year five times.
In 1998, Graf founded her own foundation, Children of Tomorrow, dedicated to raising awareness for the needs of children. She married fellow tennis player Andre Agassi in 2001. They have two children.
Pete Sampras held the record for Wimbledon men’s singles titles with seven until Roger Federer won his eighth title in 2017. Sampras also has 14 Grand Slam titles and is regarded as of the greatest players in history.
In 2007, Sampras was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame. Now, he’s primarily spending time with wife and two sons, while sometimes picking up a tennis racket or golf club.
Monica Seles became the youngest ever to win the French Open at 16 in 1990. She won eight Grand Slam singles titles as a teenager representing Yugoslavia and another while representing the US. In 1993 she was stabbed in an on-court attack and took over two years away from tennis.
Seles played her last professional match at the 2003 French Open and officially retired in 2008. She was inducted to the International Tennis Hall of Fame (ITF) in 2009. She has written three books since then and is a spokesperson for a pharmaceutical company raising awareness for Binge Eating Disorder.
Andre Agassi is credited with reviving tennis in the 1990s and was the first male player to win all four Grand Slam tournaments on three different surfaces. He won an Olympic gold medal in 1996 and is an eight-time time Grand Slam singles champion (1986-2006).
Agassi married tennis star Steffi Graf in 2001 and retired from tennis after the 2006 US Open. He has since delved into his philanthropy, partnering with an investment fund to finance the construction of over 80 charter schools across the US.
Martina Hingis became the youngest-ever Grand Slam champion in 1996. She won 25 major titles throughout her career across singles, women’s doubles, and mixed doubles matches. She retired in November 2007.
Hingis came out of retirement in 2013 to play doubles events. She won four Grand Slam women’s doubles tournaments and six Grand Slam mixed doubles tournaments. She retired after the 2017 WTA Finals while ranked world No. 1 and had her first daughter, Lia, in February 2019.
Stefan Edberg won six Grand Slam singles titles and three Grand Slam men’s doubles titles. Hailing from Sweden, he is regarded as one of the best to play the game from the country.
Edberg retired in 1996 and went on to coach Roger Federer from 2014 to December 2015. Now, he still plays tennis occasionally, but has invested a lot of his time in finance and real estate.
Gabriela Sabatini was a prominent woman in the sport in the late 1880s and early 1990s. She won 27 singles titles overall, including a US Open Grand Slam, and 14 doubles titles.
Since retiring in 1996, she promoted her perfume line. In 2019, she received the Philippe Chatrier Award winner – the International Tennis Federation’s highest honor.
Michael Chang won the French Open Grand Slam singles title at 17 years old. He won 34 singles titles in his career. Chang was known for his speed since he was shorter than most opponents. He retired in 2003.
Chang was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2008. He has coached Kei Nishikori since 2014.
Jennifer Capriati made her professional debut at 13 years old, reaching the finals in two of her first three pro events. She won a gold medal and the 1992 Games and three Grand Slam singles titles in her career.
Capriati retired in 2004 and was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2012. She has had several run-ins with the law throughout her life, most recently in 2013. Since then, she has remained largely out of the spotlight.
Boris Becker became the first unseeded player and first German to win the Wimbledon singles title in 1985. He won six major singles titles and an Olympic gold medal for men’s doubles.
Becker retired in 1999 and went on to partake in poker and coaching. He coached Novak Djokovic from 2013-2016. He is also a commentator on FOX Sports Australia’s “The Daily Serve.” In 2017, Becker was declared bankrupt and sold memorabilia in 2019 to pay off his debt.
Spanish tennis star Arantxa Sánchez Vicario won 14 Grand Slam titles, including three singles titles at the French Open and one at the US Open. She is the only tennis player to play in five Olympics, winning two silver and two bronze medals.
Sánchez Vicario was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2007. In July 2019, La Vanguardia reported she was fighting for custody of her children after her divorce.
Goran Ivanisevic became the only person to win the men’s singles title at Wimbledon as a wildcard in 2001. It was his only Grand Slam title. He won 22 singles titles in his career.
Ivanisevic began coaching in 2013 after retiring in 2004. Novak Djokovic added him to his coaching team in June 2019.
Jana Novotna won the 1998 Wimbledon women’s singles title and was particularly successful in women’s doubles. She won 12 Grand Slam women’s doubles titles (two Career Grand Slams), along with four Grand Slam mixed doubles titles.
Novotna retired in 1999 and was inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2005. She was a commentator on the BBC for two years. She died of cancer in November 2017.
Patrick Rafter was the first man in the Open Era to win the Canada Masters, Cincinnati Masters and the US Open in the same year. He is the only player with at least three meetings that remains undefeated against Roger Federer. Rafter won the US Open in 1997 and 1998.
Since 2014, Rafter has remained largely away from the spotlight. He resides in the Northern Rivers region of Australia, where he is raising his children and is enjoying his life with his family.
Mary Pierce turned pro at 14 years old. She won four Grand Slam titles in her career – two in singles, one in women’s doubles, and one in mixed doubles. Pierce won the French Open in 2000. She is the last French player, male or female, to do so.
An on-court knee injury sidelined Pierce in 2006, and she was unable to return to the tour. She was inducted into the ITF Hall of Fame in 2019. For more than a decade, she has lived in Black River, Mauritius, where she teaches tennis. She created the Mary Pierce Indian Ocean Series in 2015 to give young girls a path to pro.
Yevgeny Kafelnikov is the last man to win both the men’s singles and doubles titles at the same Grand Slam tournament. He completed the feat at the 1996 French Open. He won six Grand Slam titles in his career, as well as a gold medal at the 2000 Olympics. He played his last match in 2003 and officially retired in 2010.
After retiring, Kafelnikov ventured into the worlds of poker and golf. By 2015, he was one of Russia’s top golfers. His golf success has since dipped. He was inducted into the ITF Hall of Fame in 2019.
Martina Navratilova is the only player in history to rank No. 1 in both singles and doubles for more than 200 weeks. Her 31 major women’s titles are an all-time record. She also won 18 Grand Slam singles titles. Navratilova are the only Open Era players to win six major singles titles without losing a set.
Navratilova retired from full-time singles competition in 1994 and was inducted into the ITF Hall of Fame in 2019. She returned in 2000, playing mostly doubles before retiring in 2006. She lives in South Florida with her wife and two children. She is also an activist and a Tennis Channel analyst.
Now read about the next generation of tennis…
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