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Beyond the Baseline

Go Figure: Esther Vergeer's dominant career in wheelchair tennis

Esther Vergeer Esther Vergeer won the last 470 matches of her illustrious career. (Leon Neal/AFP/Getty Images)

Esther Vergeer, 31, retired Tuesday after a decorated career in wheelchair tennis. How dominant was the Dutchwoman? Her last loss came 10 years ago, in January 2003. Here's a look at her career by the numbers.

12: The age at which Vergeer took up wheelchair tennis. Vergeer was 8 when she lost the use of her legs after spinal surgery. She played her first international tournament in 1996 and became No. 1 for the first time in 1999.

700-25: Vergeer's singles record, according to the ITF, for a .966 winning percentage.

10: Years in which Vergeer went unbeaten in singles to finish her career. In her last tournament, Vergeer won singles and doubles gold at the London Paralympics in September.

470: Consecutive victories for Vergeer during her 10-year unbeaten run. Her last loss was to Daniela Di Toro in January 2003, a 6-1, 6-4 defeat. That loss snapped an 89-match winning streak, meaning she won 559 of her last 560 matches.

148: Singles titles.

136: Doubles titles.

7: Paralympic gold medals, four in singles and three in doubles.

668: Weeks at No. 1. She held the top spot every week from Oct. 2, 2000, to Jan. 21, 2013, finishing the season ranked No. 1 in 13 consecutive years.

44: Grand Slam titles in both singles (21) and doubles (23).


Here are some numbers that Vergeer compiled during her 10-year, 470-match winning streak:

120: Consecutive tournaments won, including tour events, Grand Slams and the Paralympics.

95: Matches won 6-0, 6-0.

18: Sets lost.

1: Match points faced.

73: Different opponents beaten.

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