Chris Evert has a firm grasp on one of the greatest feats in sports

Evert is one of the best tennis players ever, of course, but one record she holds is arguably the best in the history of sports.
Chris Evert at Wimbledon
Chris Evert at Wimbledon / Fox Photos/GettyImages

Chris Evert has always been great for tennis. In her first year playing professional tennis, she reached the semifinal of the US Open. That was in 1971. By the time she had finished in 1989, she had won 18 majors and spent a combined 260 weeks ranked No. 1. That number remains fourth all-time.

At the time of her retirement, Evert's 18 major titles were second-best. If one discounts Margaret Court (no, Court was not a bad player, but when she was winning many of her Grand Slams, women's tennis was organized completely differently), Evert had the most Grand Slam titles. In simpler terms, she was one of the best players in the history of the sport.

One accomplishment Evert reached might be unrivaled in the history of sports in general, however. Between 1971 and 1987, if Evert reached the quarterfinal of a Grand Slam - which she did in every major tournament she played except one - she won the match and reached the semifinals. That is a string of 48 straight wins when reaching the quarters. Forty. Eight.

Chris Evert has a win-streak unlikely to ever be matched

In comparison, current WTA No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka has started her career by winning her first nine quarterfinal matches. She trails Evert by 40. If Sabalenka were to play every Grand Slam event for the next ten years, she would have to make the quarterfinals and win her match. That seems implausible as Sabalenka would be 36 years old at the end of that run.

No. 1 Iga Swiatek has been the dominant force on the WTA tour for most of two years, but she has lost in the quarterfinals twice in seven tries. Once she reaches the finals of events, she is nearly unbeatable, but she is beatable in the quarters in a way Chris Evert never was.

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Serena Williams might be the best women's player ever, but she lost in the quarterfinals of Grand Slams 14 times. While Williams won 23 major titles, five more than Evert, Evert has a better winning percentage at Grand Slams. She won 89.0 percent of her major matches (299-37). Williams won 86.8 percent of her Grand Slam matches (368-56).

Evert's 48 straight wins in the quarterfinals of Grand Slams equals 12 straight years of not losing in the quarters. The American did miss some tournaments so her run needed to last 16 years, but the number is ridiculously impressive either way. The mark is also unlikely to ever be equaled.

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