Wimbledon has had women raising plates and men biting trophies since 1877, as the London stage hosts oldest and most traditional tennis tournament in the world. The most prestigious Grand Slam is known for sticking to the sport's original grass surface as well as a strict "all-white-apparel" rule, creating a clean look on the green. Colorways are out, but the sneaker heat is in. These are The Sneakers Worn by the 10 Most Iconic Tennis Champs at Wimbledon.
No. 1 - Stan Smith
Sneaker: adidas Stan Smith
It was a good year for adidas and tennis icon Stan Smith, the man who changed the tennis shoe game forever with his signature shoe was in 1971. Classic, simple, and clean, sneaker was the first leather tennis shoe in production, selling over 40 million pairs since its release. The white and green OG colorway is set to make a comeback January 2014, so if you’re trying to start the New Year with a power move, cop yourself up a pair.
No. 2 - Billie Jean King
Sneaker: adidas "B.J. King"
One of the greatest female tennis players of all time, Billie Jean King, won most of her early Wimbledon titles rocking adidas. The B.J. King model is a classic low-top tennis shoe with a thick rubber outsole and a baby blue/gray/white color scheme. The tongue had a sketch of Billie Jean herself and her signature was stitched in gold on the side giving the the lady her credit in the signature shoe game.
No. 3 - Arthur Ashe
Sneaker: Le Coq Sportif Arthur Ashe
The year marked the first time in Wimbledon history for an African-American to win the title. Arthur Ashe was the American No. 1 ranked tennis player with three Grand Slam titles under his belt, including Wimbledon, U.S. and Australian Open. His signature shoe, the Le Coq Sportif Arthur Ashe, are simple and easy on the eye much like the Stan Smith’s. The leather low-top had perforated holes along the side which allowed the shoe to breathe, with the classic Arther Ashe scrolled across the upper.
No. 4 - Bjorn Borg
Sneaker: Diadora Borg Elite
Bjorn Borg is no joke in the tennis world, a five-time consecutive Wimbledon champion. But it wasn’t his elegant style, the shorts or all the sweat bands in the world that sealed the deal for Bjorg, it was his Diadora Borg Elite tennis shoes. Made from kangaroo leather with gold, silver, black or red stripes along the side, Borg made bolt statements about his sigs, “If I were in your shoes, I’d buy my shoes.”
No. 5 - John McEnroe
Sneaker: Nike Wimbledon GTS
Before getting drunk, egging cars, and jumping over taxis with Adam Sandler, John McEnroe was out winning Wimbledon titles in some OG Nikes. The Nike Wimbledons were the brand's original tennis shoe and McEnroe's favorite of the decade. Low top leather with an iconic blue swoosh, this shoe was one of the brand's most successful shoes for tennis.
No. 6 - Chris Evert
Sneaker: Converse Chris Evert
The former No. 1 pro from the US is also a three-time Wimbledon champion and record holder for the most Grand Slam singles titles in the history of professional tennis. Evert choose to take the canvas Converse to London in '81, a brand that has since lost it's footing on the tennis court.
No. 7 - Steffi Graf
Sneaker: adidas Grand Slam
Steffi Graf has won 22 Grand Slams, which marks a record for Grand Slam titles by men and women. As the first and only tennis player to win the Calendar Year Golden Slam (all four Grand Slam titles and an Olympic Gold in the same year) Graf is one of the best. Sporting the adidas Grand Slam, we wonder if Graf ever put that peg cushioning system to work.
No. 8 - Stefan Edberg
Sneaker: adidas Edberg
Stefan Edberg is a two-time Wimbledon champion, both times in his signature shoe. The adidas Edberg, like the Lendl’s, were a product of the late '80s with a nylon upper and a beefier outsole, strongly influenced by the heftier basketball and cross-training products that were making a splash at the time.
No. 9 - Andre Agassi
Sneaker: Nike Air Tech Challenge Huarache
The Huarache technology had made it's way to Wimbledon. The unconventional look had to have made a splash, even in an all-white colorway, on the court in London. Inspired by the woven leather sandal, the “Huarache-fit” bootie acted as an early form of compression for wearers. Nike asked consumers, “Have you hugged your foot today?” Agassi did, taking the Wimbledon title in ’92.
No. 10 - Pete Sampras
Sneaker: Nike Air Oscillate
The Air Oscillate is a legendary tennis shoe from Nike, thanks to Pete Sampras, the 14-time Grand Slam Champion who claimed seven Wimbledon titles. After Tinker Hatfield tricked Sampras into wearing the Oscillates by way of a quick game of basketball. The rest is history.