Paris (AFP) – Rafael Nadal goes for an 11th French Open title when he faces Dominic Thiem in Sunday’s final.
AFP Sports takes a look at an elite group of other athletes with 11 or more titles in the same event:
— The legendary Boston Celtics centre won a record 11 NBA championships as the franchise dominated the league in the late 1950s and throughout the 1960s. Russell notably operated as player-coach during his final two title-winning seasons in 1968 and 1969. He was voted the NBA’s Most Valuable Player five times and later inducted into the Hall of Fame. Team-mate Sam Jones, drafted after Boston’s 1957 triumph, teamed up with Russell to win 10 of those 11 titles.
— Phil “The Power” Taylor is the undisputed greatest darts player in history with a record 16 world titles. He won the first of those in 1990 before sweeping to eight in a row between 1995 and 2002. Taylor has been instrumental in transforming darts into the force it is today. The Englishman retired from the sport after losing the 2018 final to Rob Cross.
— The Manchester United great’s career coincided with the club’s most successful period in its history as the Welshman won a remarkable 13 Premier League titles. Giggs broke through as a teenager at Old Trafford, helping United end a 26-year wait as they claimed the 1992-93 league crown. He eventually retired in 2014, a year after United lifted the league trophy once more in Alex Ferguson’s final season as manager.
— Court’s legacy as the most successful player in Grand Slam history has been overshadowed by her controversial and sustained outbursts over homosexuality. But she remains the only player in history to win 10 or more titles at a single Slam — lifting the Australian Open a staggering 11 times between 1960 and 1973. Her 24 major titles is one more than Serena Williams’ Open era record.
— Evans won 11 women’s world snooker titles in her career including 10 in a row from 2005 to 2014. She also recorded another landmark in 2017 when she defeated Finland’s Robin Hull in the first round of qualifyng for the men’s world championship. She was beaten in the second round by Lee Walker. Evans was unable to attempt to qualify for the 2018 world championship as the women’s event in 2017 was won by Hong Kong’s Ng On Yee. Famously won the 2006 women’s world title while seven months pregnant.