Esther Vergeer

Esther Vergeer

Wheelchair Tennis Player
Wheelchair Tennis Player Less

Esther Vergeer

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Esther Vergeer (born 18 July 1981, Woerden) is a Dutch wheelchair tennis player. Combining singles and doubles, she has won 37 Grand Slams, 21 year-end championships and 5 Paralympics titles. Vergeer has been the world number one wheel chair tennis player since 1999. In singles, she has not been beaten since January 2003 and is on a winning streak of 422 matches<!--as of July 31, 2011-->. She is often considered the most dominant player in professional sports.

Early life and career

Vergeer developed paraplegia when she was 8 years old due to an otherwise successful, very risky surgery concerning hemorrhaging blood vessels around her spinal cord. During rehabilitation she learned to play volleyball, basketball, and tennis in a wheelchair. After playing basketball for several years at club level, she was invited to join the national wheelchair basketball team. She played with the Dutch team that won the European championship in 1997.

Vergeer had started playing tennis in parallel with basketball, playing her first international tournament in 1996, and switched to full-time tennis in 1998. Coached by Marc Kalkman, her first big win was at the US Open championships in 1998, moving her from 15th to 2nd in the world ranking. She beat top seed Daniela Di Toro to win the singles title and partnered with Sonja...
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