5 fastest serves in Women's tennis history

Former World No.10 player Brenda Schultz-McCarthy’s serve of 126 mph is the sixth fastest in Women’s tennis history

A good start to a match in any sport is important to gain confidence and keep some momentum and in tennis, a good start to a match is always built through a powerful and precise serve. Players like Margaret Court, Chris Evert, Martina Navratilova, Steffi Graf, and Monica Seles made Women’s tennis very exciting to watch and the present players including Serena Williams, Venus Williams, Angelique Kerber, Maria Sharapova, etc have carried on that legacy.One of the many things that have advanced in Women’s tennis in recent times has been the service speeds of the players. As a matter of fact, all of the Top 10 serves in Women’s tennis history have been recorded within the last ten years. Here are the Top five serves in Women’s tennis history


#5. 126 mph by Brenda Schultz-McCarthy

Brenda Schultz-McCarthy is one of Netherlands’ most famed tennis players and achieved a career-high ranking of World No.9 in May 1996, shortly after reaching the quarter-finals of Wimbledon and US Open. Schultz-McCarthy was known for her fast serve but did not record her fastest serve until the twilight of her career.It was the 2007 Indian Wells Masters and the 36-year old Dutchwoman had qualified for the tournament as a wildcard. In the first round, Schultz-McCarthy was up against another wildcard, USA’s Bethanie Mattek-Sands and during that match, she hit a serve recorded at 126 mph (202.7 km/h).

Schultz-McCarthy went on to lose the match 6-1, 6-1 but her serve remains to be the sixth-fastest serve in Women’s tennis history.

#4. 126.1 mph by Julia Gorges and Caroline Garcia

Both Julia Gorges and Caroline Garcia hold the record for the fourth fastest serve in Women’s tennis

The fourth-fastest serve in Women’s tennis history of 126.1 mph (203 km/h) is held by two players - Germany’s Julia Gorges and France’s Caroline Garcia. Gorges was the first to record this speed during her first round match against Lucie Hradecka at the 2012 French Open where she reached the third round before losing to Arantxa Rus.

Caroline Garcia recorded her serve at 126.1 mph against Italy’s Sara Errani during the 2016 Fed Cup. Garcia won the match in straight sets and France defeated Italy 4-1. France eventually made the final of the Fed Cup where they lost 3-2 to the Czech Republic.

#3. 128.3 mph by Serena Williams

Serena Williams’ 128.3 mph serve is the third fastest in Women’s tennis history

Serena Williams is not only regarded to be one of the greatest exponents of the sport but also the greatest server in Women’s tennis history. While it is really difficult to tell which shot Serena has mastered the most, her powerful and accurate serve has always been one of her biggest weapons and has always fascinated the spectators.

Williams’ fastest serve was recorded at 128.3 mph (206.4 km/h) during her third round match against Japan’s Ayumi Morita at the 2013 Australian Open which Williams won comfortably in straight sets. However, her path was cut short in the quarter-finals as she lost to compatriot Sloane Stephens.

Nevertheless, her 128.3 mph serve at that tournament was the fastest of the year and remains to be the third-fastest Women’s serve of all-time.

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#2. 129 mph by Venus Williams

Venus Williams’ 129 mph serve at the 2007 US Open was the fastest serve in Women’s tennis before it was bettered in 2014

Like her younger sibling, Venus also has an extremely powerful serve and holds the record for the fastest serve at three different Grand Slam tournaments- 2007 French Open, 2008 Wimbledon, and the 2007 US Open.

Venus Williams had a disappointing 2006 which was marred by a wrist injury but made a remarkable comeback in 2007 by winning the Wimbledon title. After a successful Wimbledon, Venus was one of the favourites heading into the US Open.

In her first round match of the tournament against Hungarian Kira Nagy, Williams hit a serve recorded at 129.0 mph (207.6 km/h) which was the fastest serve in Women’s history at that time. Williams went on to reach the semi-finals of the tournament where she was beaten by eventual champion Justine Henin.

Williams nearly bettered this serve by 129.8 mph at the 2013 Toray Pan Pacific Open against Eugenie Bouchard but her serve was not recognised by the WTA because the company collecting the data of the serve speeds during the match wasn’t IDS.

Here’s the video of the serve at Toray Pan Pacific Open,

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Williams’ 129 mph serve was a record for nearly seven years before it was broken by a former Wimbledon finalist whose name you’ll come across in the next slide.

#1. 131 mph by Sabine Lisicki

Lisicki’s serve of 131 mph at the 2014 Stanford Classic is the fastest recorded serve in Women’s tennis history

Germany’s Sabine Lisicki is known for her extremely aggressive game and has been given the nickname “Boom Boomfor her powerful serve. Despite having reached most of her WTA finals at hard courts, Lisicki’s favourite surface is grass.

Despite being allergic to grass, Lisicki has shown most of her career’s best performances at this surface, reaching the Wimbledon final in 2013 and having qualified for at least the quarter-finals from 2011-2014. It was at a grass court tournament that Lisicki scripted a historical record in 2014.

The tournament was the Stanford Classic and Lisicki was up against former French Open champion Ana Ivanovic. During the 11th game of the first set of the match, Lisicki hit a serve recorded at 131 mph (210.8 km/h), thus breaking Venus Williams’ record of 129 mph for the fastest serve in Women’s tennis history which was unbroken for nearly seven years.

Lisicki went on to lose the match in straight sets but she scripted one of her career’s finest moments during the match.

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Venus Williams and Father Richard recall one match that 7-time Grand Slam champion "should have won"

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Edited by Staff Editor
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