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View Full Version : Who was more popular in their prime, Kournikova or Sharapova?


JarkaFish
Dec 26th, 2012, 02:56 AM
Who do you reckon was more popular?

Barktra
Dec 26th, 2012, 02:57 AM
Kournikova

StoneRose
Dec 26th, 2012, 02:59 AM
Don't know. It's hardly fair comparison, Maria is a tennis player who does some modelling on the side. Kournikova a model who sometimes strayed to the court until she got fed up with it.

Julian.
Dec 26th, 2012, 03:41 AM
Maria Sharapova :oh:

MashaAzarenka
Dec 26th, 2012, 03:58 AM
Kournikova was never relevant.

denny5576
Dec 26th, 2012, 04:10 AM
Sharapova by far...

Dav.
Dec 26th, 2012, 04:15 AM
Don't know. It's hardly fair comparison, Maria is a tennis player who does some modelling on the side. Kournikova a model who sometimes strayed to the court until she got fed up with it.

Yeah, that's not what happened...

Cooper96
Dec 26th, 2012, 04:20 AM
Isn't Maria still in her prime?

Brad[le]y.
Dec 26th, 2012, 04:22 AM
Kournikova was never relevant.

she's a former top 10 player and GS SFist. On top of that she won two doubles slams. Not bad for someone irrelevant :lol:

But the world's highest paid female athlete wins this one.

MashaAzarenka
Dec 26th, 2012, 04:23 AM
y.;22626257']she's a former top 10 player and GS SFist. On top of that she won two doubles slams. Not bad for someone irrelevant :lol:

But the world's highest paid female athlete wins this one.

She was all hype!

Brad[le]y.
Dec 26th, 2012, 04:28 AM
She was all hype!

Not true, Anna was a very talented player. Her run in Miami 1998 was seriously impressive taking down 4 top ten players including outplaying Davenport in her slam winning years. She didn't win the title but that's beside the point. Both Anna and Maria are very talented women, but Maria was able to produce success.

young_gunner913
Dec 26th, 2012, 04:29 AM
Kournikova. She was a household name. Sharapova isn't.

Cooper96
Dec 26th, 2012, 04:30 AM
Kournikova. She was a household name. Sharapova isn't.

That's just not true. Almost everyone knows who Maria Sharapova is.

MashaAzarenka
Dec 26th, 2012, 04:31 AM
Kournikova. She was a household name. Sharapova isn't.

You're kidding right? Sharapova is 10x more of a household name than Kournikova ever was.

Noten
Dec 26th, 2012, 04:41 AM
http://img19.imageshack.us/img19/5166/89890.gif

Obvs.

thegreendestiny
Dec 26th, 2012, 04:58 AM
Kournikova. She was a household name. Sharapova isn't.

Still can't get over the fact that Maria is more popular than Serena worldwide? :happy:

young_gunner913
Dec 26th, 2012, 05:12 AM
Still can't get over the fact that Maria is more popular than Serena worldwide? :happy:

Serena has nothing to do with it and honestly, I could care less about popularity when it comes to a tennis player. Tennis achievements are more relevant IMO. I know you Sharapova turds love a good popularity contest but you've been sacked by Aga's Army back to back years and you're not winning one vs Kournikova. :shrug:

Charlatan
Dec 26th, 2012, 05:18 AM
http://legacy.barstoolsports.com/_images/articles/2008/04/07/anna_maria_tennis_big.jpg

Both

Dav.
Dec 26th, 2012, 05:27 AM
She was all hype!

Lol, no. Year-end doubles #1, two doubles slams, singles top 8, 3 Tier I finals, Wimbledon SF, Aussie QF and wins over the likes of Hingis, Seles, Davenport, Graf (on grass), Sanchez-Vicario (on clay), Capriati, etc.

And all of this before the age of 20 :lol:

pancake
Dec 26th, 2012, 05:40 AM
It's probably Sharapova. I mean if Kournikova was an up-and-coming player nowadays she'd probably be just as popular, if not more, thanks to Facebook and Twiitter and stuff like that.

sammy01
Dec 26th, 2012, 05:59 AM
Obviously far too many posters on here were too young to have experienced the Kournikova couple of years where she was tennis. Sharapova may earn more money these days but then inflation has gone through the roof.

The days when the Sun newspaper would post any stories just to have pictures of her in it, FHM's readers voted her the sexiest woman in the world, celeb gossip mags couldn't get enough of her and Enrique.

She completely transcended tennis. The world has moved on in terms of women's sports and money will forever be rising, but Kournikova for a brief period was as hot property as anyone can get.

Stonerpova
Dec 26th, 2012, 06:17 AM
Lol, no. Year-end doubles #1, two doubles slams, singles top 8, 3 Tier I finals, Wimbledon SF, Aussie QF and wins over the likes of Hingis, Seles, Davenport, Graf (on grass), Sanchez-Vicario (on clay), Capriati, etc.

And all of this before the age of 20 :lol:

And 90% of the people who know Anna Kournikova have no idea about any of this, nor do they care.

Dav.
Dec 26th, 2012, 07:21 AM
And 90% of the people who know Anna Kournikova have no idea about any of this, nor do they care.

How does that make her any less relevant in terms of popularity? Same thing applies to Sharapova, despite her more accomplished career. The "90%" you mentioned have a much different priority. :p

And those facts were only a response to the user that said she was solely the subject of hype in tennis. ;)

Dominic
Dec 26th, 2012, 07:46 AM
Serena has nothing to do with it and honestly, I could care less about popularity when it comes to a tennis player. Tennis achievements are more relevant IMO. I know you Sharapova turds love a good popularity contest but you've been sacked by Aga's Army back to back years and you're not winning one vs Kournikova. :shrug:

Ahem no tennis player is as popular as Maria Sharapova globally you realize that? Aga doesn't even come close, what a few fans on this forum have voted is insignificant. Maria did pretty damn well anyway.

CJ07
Dec 26th, 2012, 08:04 AM
Obviously far too many posters on here were too young to have experienced the Kournikova couple of years where she was tennis. Sharapova may earn more money these days but then inflation has gone through the roof.

The days when the Sun newspaper would post any stories just to have pictures of her in it, FHM's readers voted her the sexiest woman in the world, celeb gossip mags couldn't get enough of her and Enrique.

She completely transcended tennis. The world has moved on in terms of women's sports and money will forever be rising, but Kournikova for a brief period was as hot property as anyone can get.

This.

Also:

[Kournikova] continued to be the most searched athlete on the Internet through 2008 even though she had retired from the professional tennis circuit years earlier.[39] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anna_Kournikova#cite_note-39)[40] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anna_Kournikova#cite_note-40)[41] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anna_Kournikova#cite_note-41)[42] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anna_Kournikova#cite_note-42) After slipping from first to sixth among athletes in 2009,[43] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anna_Kournikova#cite_note-43) she moved back up to third place among athletes in terms of search popularity in 2010.[44] (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anna_Kournikova#cite_note-44)

faboozadoo15
Dec 26th, 2012, 08:22 AM
Anna at her peak caused hysteria. She may have he highest peak in popularity than any tennis player, man or woman.

Overall nowadays I'm sure many more people know who Maria is than ever knew who Anna was. Maria isn't as relentlessly pursued by the media though (not even close). Sharapova makes headlines for winning or making finals, and Anna made headlines for losses and her personal life.

hingis-seles
Dec 26th, 2012, 08:31 AM
Anna Kournikova was a celebrity who transcended tennis more than any other player before or since. No one even comes close.

Royals.
Dec 26th, 2012, 09:14 AM
Kournikova. She was a household name. Sharapova isn't.


Kournikova was the BITCH back in the day. I loved that girl. Sharapova should have just went hoeing like her tbh.

Serena has nothing to do with it and honestly, I could care less about popularity when it comes to a tennis player. Tennis achievements are more relevant IMO. I know you Sharapova turds love a good popularity contest but you've been sacked by Aga's Army back to back years and you're not winning one vs Kournikova. :shrug:

Agreed.

15 (GOAT List)>>>>>> 4 i know what i'd rather have. :)

saint2
Dec 26th, 2012, 09:39 AM
Pova. Even my grandmother knows Maria Sharapova.

vixter
Dec 26th, 2012, 09:47 AM
Anna Kournikova of course. She was the Pamela Anderson of sports. There will never be a new Anna. Her tennis was really nice, too.

Chrissie-fan
Dec 26th, 2012, 09:52 AM
Obviously far too many posters on here were too young to have experienced the Kournikova couple of years where she was tennis. Sharapova may earn more money these days but then inflation has gone through the roof.

The days when the Sun newspaper would post any stories just to have pictures of her in it, FHM's readers voted her the sexiest woman in the world, celeb gossip mags couldn't get enough of her and Enrique.

She completely transcended tennis. The world has moved on in terms of women's sports and money will forever be rising, but Kournikova for a brief period was as hot property as anyone can get.
Kournikova is probably the most popular female player in history. Indeed, some are just too young to have experienced Kournikova mania. Practice sessions of Kournikova often had bigger crowds than real matches from others, including ATP players. Kournikova is as close to a Marilyn Monroe or Brigitte Bardot as tennis will ever get. Of course Sharapova will in the long run be more remembered by tennis fans because she has the ideal mix of glamour, star quality and accomplishments on the courts. I'm not saying that Kournikova wasn't a good tennis player or that her stardom was all based on hot air though. She was much better than many usually give her credit for, and if she hadn't suffered all those injuries I'm sure she would have been a top ten player for much longer than she was.

Alejandrawrrr
Dec 26th, 2012, 09:54 AM
Both can thank their looks for their popularity especially Anna, but it's definitely Kournikova. Sharapova came in at the right time to ride the "sexy blond tennis player" wave, but no one ever had the ridiculous phenomena of Peak Anna(at least here in the US.) I know plenty of people who know Sharapova's name but couldn't pick her out in a crowd, whereas everyone knew Kournikova's face because she was allover magazines and tv ads. To be fair to Sharapova, Kounikova's time was a much more popular era for women's tennis, so maybe that contributed :shrug:

Mateo Mathieu
Dec 26th, 2012, 09:58 AM
Anna Kournikova, hands down.

She changed the tour. The women's tennis were increased popularity because of her. Sharapova doesn't have the same effect on people.


Sent from my iPhone using Verticalsports.com Free App (http://www.verticalsports.com/mobile)

Igorche
Dec 26th, 2012, 10:05 AM
Anna

arn
Dec 26th, 2012, 10:36 AM
It was Kournikova giving female tennis a huge popularity boost. A not to be underestimated part of todays popularity is still based on what Kournikova did for the sport. I bet if you would organise a tournament both would play in, Kournikova's matches would get a crowd that's easily the double of Sharapova. Like said here above, she was the Marilyn Monroe of tennis.

Talula
Dec 26th, 2012, 10:46 AM
No comparison. Sharapova is not a household name. Ana was.

saint2
Dec 26th, 2012, 10:48 AM
No comparison. Sharapova is not a household name. Ana was.

What is a "household name" ?

Believe me, no one cares here about Kournikova. Sharapova is an icon of tennis.
I say most recognizable of all time.

Joelina
Dec 26th, 2012, 11:12 AM
Both :shrug:

Gaby Gasparyan
Dec 26th, 2012, 11:14 AM
Who's Sharapova?

Trickle
Dec 26th, 2012, 12:17 PM
Does Maria Sharapova have a computer virus named after her? Yeah... didn't think so. Any woman who can turn a computer nerd away from copulating with his computer and paying attention to any sport is a woman that has influence.

The older posters spill that truth tea.

I could argue that peak mediawhore Maria Sharapova vs peak mediawhore Anna Kournikova, peak mediawhore Maria would win for the attention she got on that auspicious July 2004 day but longitudinally, Anna wins.

People til this day who I meet still don't know who Maria Sharapova is except in the form of "Is that the girl that screams like she's about to come when she hits the ball?". As for Anna Kournikova, alot of older people will definitely remember her.

Trust me, if you were cognizant enough back in the late 90s (and I know alot of people claim they were but really if you remove any retrieval of information obtained, particularly vicariously from the internet, from the past 10 years from their developing brain and had to work with what you had left, the real story shows), you would know that... Anna was THE NAME on everyone's lips. Because of how weak the men's era was at that time, with Pete Sampras predictably flopping harder than his wife's movie career in RG and apart from Wimbledon, every other slam could have been won by the late 90s male version of Roberta Vinci and how strong the women's era was, the women's game came to the forefront and Anna was the poster child even though she wasn't winning anything. If only there was Google trends in the late 90s. If only.

The reason why I started getting into tennis is because I saw the Anna Kournikova playstation video game advertised in my department store. It was sold out, so I had to go back and wait for them to get new stock. I still remember what the cashier looked like who told me it was sold out. He was pudgy and had black hair. Why would I remember this, if me wanting this game wasn't such a big deal? By this time, I was too old to aspire to be a professional tennis player but i was enthralled by the game, partly because of her.

Long live Anna and her underrated status. :angel:

Sammo
Dec 26th, 2012, 12:20 PM
I don't know I started following tennis around 2006, but everyone in the planet knows who is Maria Sharapova

viktory
Dec 26th, 2012, 12:29 PM
I would say kournikova.

tejmeglekvár
Dec 26th, 2012, 12:32 PM
Nobody remembers Kournikova as a tennisplayer except few tennis-geek.

viktory
Dec 26th, 2012, 12:33 PM
I think kournikova. Sharapova is phenomenally popular amongst tennis fans. But kounikova was well known to even general public.

hankqq
Dec 26th, 2012, 12:34 PM
At least in the US, Sharapova is known almost exclusively to tennis fans. A lot of people who don't follow tennis couldn't name her. Kournikova back in the day was known to tennis fans and the rest of the public. As others have said, she was all over sports, fashion and gossip magazines, appeared in that Iglesias music video and there was that computer virus :lol: Even though she failed to win any singles titles, Kournikova frequently played her matches on the main/center courts at slams and big tennis events because organizers could count on her to fill seats.

tennismaster8820
Dec 26th, 2012, 12:55 PM
Kournikova was way more popular, there was no person who didn't know who she is.
Not the case with Sharapova....

saint2
Dec 26th, 2012, 01:11 PM
I think kournikova. Sharapova is phenomenally popular amongst tennis fans. But kounikova was well known to even general public.

And general public knows her...for what ?
For being mediocre tennisplayer ? Or for being most overrated woman in look department in history ?

She was never ever popular here where I live.

Sharapova is a symbol of tennis, and a brand of her own.

Sammo
Dec 26th, 2012, 01:19 PM
And general public knows her...for what ?
For being mediocre tennisplayer ? Or for being most overrated woman in look department in history ?

She was never ever popular here where I live.

Sharapova is a symbol of tennis, and a brand of her own.

How can you be mediocre being in the top 10 for years, reaching the wimbledon semifinals, and being one of the best doubles players of the past few decades? :confused:

Lilowannabe
Dec 26th, 2012, 01:25 PM
Kournikova, I mean she's arguably the most famous women's tennis player ever. Sharapova is widely known too, but not on the scale kournikova in the late 90s, early 2000 was.

saint2
Dec 26th, 2012, 01:25 PM
How can you be mediocre being in the top 10 for years, reaching the wimbledon semifinals, and being one of the best doubles players of the past few decades? :confused:

Not "for years", but maybe for a weeks. "For years" she was mediocre.
Reaching Wimbledon sf ? See Pironkova.

doomsday
Dec 26th, 2012, 01:27 PM
How can you be mediocre being in the top 10 for years, reaching the wimbledon semifinals, and being one of the best doubles players of the past few decades? :confused:

Maybe because even after all those years in top 10 she never won a single title :hysteric:

saint2
Dec 26th, 2012, 01:31 PM
Kournikova, I mean she's arguably the most famous women's tennis player ever. Sharapova is widely known too, but not on the scale kournikova in the late 90s, early 2000 was.


Forgot to add shes cure the cancer.

volta
Dec 26th, 2012, 01:34 PM
Obviously far too many posters on here were too young to have experienced the Kournikova couple of years where she was tennis. Sharapova may earn more money these days but then inflation has gone through the roof.

The days when the Sun newspaper would post any stories just to have pictures of her in it, FHM's readers voted her the sexiest woman in the world, celeb gossip mags couldn't get enough of her and Enrique.

She completely transcended tennis. The world has moved on in terms of women's sports and money will forever be rising, but Kournikova for a brief period was as hot property as anyone can get.

I agree for once. Kournikova was huge back than like HUGE

ElusiveChanteuse
Dec 26th, 2012, 01:34 PM
Well, Kournikova has already become very popular even without a major win in her career.:oh: Maria is only popular because "she won Wimbledon at 17". If that didn't happen, well, we will never know.:oh:

Cosmic Voices
Dec 26th, 2012, 01:48 PM
Accidentally voted for Masha :hysteric:
but we all know Anna K is the more globally recognised in terms of media attention because well, she was a media whore - and quite rightly so.
Masha entered the tour as a influencer of Anna K and the 'blonde russian tennis player' aura. But tbh I'd rather remember an amazing tennis player than a girl with nothing that incredible to show for her career - in reality, after 30 years noone is going to care that she beat Hingis etc. but they'll know she was on the cover of sports illustrated or w/e. I'd rather my fave be in the history books then on the top shelf :oh:

Lilowannabe
Dec 26th, 2012, 02:01 PM
Forgot to add shes cure the cancer.

I sed shes 'arguably' the most famous woman tennis player. She was once the most searched person on the Internet.... She may not have had the success of Sharapova, but that's not what the threads asking.

Mistress of Evil
Dec 26th, 2012, 02:02 PM
This is such a petty, irrelevant inquiry. Yet I cannot help but dive into it. Both are quite the recognisable public figures. To me, nowadays Kournikova's fame has very little to do with tennis, she is Enrique Iglesias girlfriend and has starred in a music video of his in which they 'had sex'. She is more of a run-of-the-mill celebrity without much credentials. I have no idea how it was in the early 00s since I was like 8 back then. Clearly, she was a pioneer in tennis as to the fame department. As to Sharapova, she is a worldwide household name and more importantly a brand. All in all, money makes the world go round and in the end of the day even though the numbers ain't 100% accurate Maria is cashing in the most of everyone else past or present. Her deal with Nike is just groundbreaking in terms of female athletes.

No comparison. Sharapova is not a household name. Ana was.
Gosh, if Sharapova isn't who else is a household name in women's tennis? I fail to realise why is there need to fully discredit one of them in order to state that the other was/is more popular.

At least in the US, Sharapova is known almost exclusively to tennis fans. A lot of people who don't follow tennis couldn't name her. Kournikova back in the day was known to tennis fans and the rest of the public. As others have said, she was all over sports, fashion and gossip magazines, appeared in that Iglesias music video and there was that computer virus :lol: Even though she failed to win any singles titles, Kournikova frequently played her matches on the main/center courts at slams and big tennis events because organizers could count on her to fill seats.
Granted that she is way more popular in Asia, Europe compared to the States it is ridiculous to say that; this statement just reeks of plain hatred, like seriously.

Lilowannabe
Dec 26th, 2012, 02:10 PM
This is such a petty, irrelevant inquiry. Yet I cannot help but dive into it. Both are quite the recognisable public figures. To me, nowadays Kournikova's fame has very little to do with tennis, she is Enrique Iglesias girlfriend and has starred in a music video of his in which they 'had sex'. She is more of a run-of-the-mill celebrity without much credentials. I have no idea how it was in the early 00s since I was like 8 back then. Clearly, she was a pioneer in tennis as to the fame department. As to Sharapova, she is a worldwide household name and more importantly a brand. All in all, money makes the world go round and in the end of the day even though the numbers ain't 100% accurate Maria is cashing in the most of everyone else past or present. Her deal with Nike is just groundbreaking in terms of female athletes.



Gosh, if Sharapova isn't who else is a household name in women's tennis? I fail to realise why is there need to fully discredit one of them in order to state that the other was/is more popular.


Granted that she is way more popular in Asia, Europe compared to the States it is ridiculous to say that; this statement just reeks of plain hatred, like seriously.

Well everyone on here is a tennis fan right, of course Sharapova is a household name to us. And yes in sports, she's a'list. I knew of kournikova before I even knew what deuce ment... she benefitted from being part of women's tennis at its most popular 99-02

Sammo
Dec 26th, 2012, 02:21 PM
Maybe because even after all those years in top 10 she never won a single title :hysteric:

Oh so Lourdes Dominguez Lino is better than Kournikova then? :lol:

Jimmie48
Dec 26th, 2012, 02:34 PM
God knows I give Sharapova a lot of shit for her off-court activities but this really is a no-brainer. Sharapova at least has the results to justify the hype around her, she's tennis player first and foremost.

It's still a dark spot in tennis history that a player who never won anything (please don't start mentioning doubles titles...) got to be as popular as Kournikova was..in hindsight everyone should be embarrassed.

Sammo
Dec 26th, 2012, 02:36 PM
God knows I give Sharapova a lot of shit for her off-court activities but this really is a no-brainer. Sharapova at least has the results to justify the hype around her, she's tennis player first and foremost.

It's still a dark spot in tennis history that a player who never won anything (please don't start mentioning doubles titles...) got to be as popular as Kournikova was..in hindsight everyone should be embarrassed.

:spit:

viktory
Dec 26th, 2012, 02:37 PM
Accidentally voted for Masha :hysteric:
but we all know Anna K is the more globally recognised in terms of media attention because well, she was a media whore - and quite rightly so.
Masha entered the tour as a influencer of Anna K and the 'blonde russian tennis player' aura. But tbh I'd rather remember an amazing tennis player than a girl with nothing that incredible to show for her career - in reality, after 30 years noone is going to care that she beat Hingis etc. but they'll know she was on the cover of sports illustrated or w/e. I'd rather my fave be in the history books then on the top shelf :oh:

lol. Voting for masha probably comes for you at spinal level,not even cortical function is necessary,like a true fan ;) j/k. And i totally agree with your second part as a fellow masha fan.

Start da Game
Dec 26th, 2012, 02:38 PM
adult men always liked kournikova over sharapova......

viktory
Dec 26th, 2012, 02:46 PM
@jimmie your irrational hatred towards anna is not a bright spot either,imo. Yes,she was definitely not popular for her tennis,but she definitely contributed in making women's tennis popular. In my opinion,she deserves the mention for that. And she didn't do anything criminal to get as popular as she was. If public worships her swimsuit posters,i think major part of responsibility goes to them,rather than her.

Trickle
Dec 26th, 2012, 02:50 PM
Here is the BBC news article of Anna's virus... it's still up 11 years later.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/1167453.stm

Jimmie48
Dec 26th, 2012, 02:54 PM
@jimmie your irrational hatred towards anna is not a bright spot either,imo.

:lol: What? Irrational hatred? I'm pretty sure this is the first time I ever commented on Kournikova... please dial the drama down.

Fact is, she has never won anything. We're not talking about slams, we're talking about nothing at all. A player like that usually gets very little attention and the fact that she was such a huge star proves that people were following her for all the wrong reasons that had nothing to do with tennis...which is embarrassing. In fact, I didn't even blame her at all, I said everybody who was all over her should be embarrassed.. so I really don't see where I'm "hating" on her... unless mentioning her non existing titles counts as hate already.

Chrissie-fan
Dec 26th, 2012, 03:16 PM
It's still a dark spot in tennis history that a player who never won anything (please don't start mentioning doubles titles...) got to be as popular as Kournikova was..in hindsight everyone should be embarrassed.
A "dark spot" in tennis history from which womens tennis as a whole and Russian tennis especially has benefitted. Like it or not, to popularize an individual sport like tennis it needs charismatic players to sell the game to a wider audience. Not just great players, but charismatic players that put asses on seats and that the media are interested in. And although some other players were jealous of Kournikova at the time, they too profitted from the fact that Kournikova was so popular. Tennis is a star driven sport. There's no 'home team' in tennis like in football or basketball which in itself already creates a big fanbase. Tennis needs the Kournikova's and Sharapova's of this world.

Besides, hype or not, Kournikova WAS a good player. Not as good as Maria or some of Anna's contemporaries, but she was nevertheless a good player and for awhile (before injuries made it impossible) it looked like she would even be one of the greats of her time.

HRHoliviasmith
Dec 26th, 2012, 03:16 PM
I think kournikova. Sharapova is phenomenally popular amongst tennis fans. But kounikova was well known to even general public.

At least in the US, Sharapova is known almost exclusively to tennis fans. A lot of people who don't follow tennis couldn't name her. Kournikova back in the day was known to tennis fans and the rest of the public. As others have said, she was all over sports, fashion and gossip magazines, appeared in that Iglesias music video and there was that computer virus :lol: Even though she failed to win any singles titles, Kournikova frequently played her matches on the main/center courts at slams and big tennis events because organizers could count on her to fill seats.

Kournikova was way more popular, there was no person who didn't know who she is.
Not the case with Sharapova....

I agree for once. Kournikova was huge back than like HUGE

These.

HRHoliviasmith
Dec 26th, 2012, 03:17 PM
adult men always liked kournikova over sharapova......

LOL.

viktory
Dec 26th, 2012, 03:17 PM
^i am not looking for drama. I worded 'hatred' because you said'dark spot'. Maybe my wording was wrong,then yours was too. i in fact agree with all of what you said in your secnd post. That is what i said too,public is responsible for her popularity,she is not to be blamed. I am sorry if i misunderstood but i thought you were blaming her for her off court activities,which i don't agree with. That's all. I don't have any personal vendetta against you or any other poster. Pardon my english. Is nt my first language.

young_gunner913
Dec 26th, 2012, 03:23 PM
Ahem no tennis player is as popular as Maria Sharapova globally you realize that? Aga doesn't even come close, what a few fans on this forum have voted is insignificant. Maria did pretty damn well anyway.

The last two bits were jokes but Kournikova was a much larger IT-Girl than Sharapova was and is.

Jimmie48
Dec 26th, 2012, 03:23 PM
A "dark spot" in tennis history from which womens tennis as a whole and Russian tennis especially has benefitted. Like it or not, to popularize an individual sport like tennis it needs charismatic players to sell the game to a wider audience. Not just great players, but charismatic players that put asses on seats and that the media are interested in. And although some other players were jealous of Kournikova at the time, they too profitted from the fact that Kournikova was so popular. Tennis is a star driven sport. There's no 'home team' in tennis like in football or basketball which in itself already creates a big fanbase. Tennis needs the Kournikova's and Sharapova's of this world.


To a degree, yes. If a player is popular and successful like Sharapova is now, that is healthy. But if the most popular player dosen't have any results to back it up it makes tennis even weaker looking in from the outside as everybody assume that people just watch because a player is hot. Is that what we need? It gets attention but not all attention is good... it diminishes the actual sport to be a sideshow and that's not what we need at all.

The WTA's approach of forcing the players into fitting the "model-type" mold in their marketing is a big problem these days and players like Kournikova paved the ground for that. Just being a good tennis player isn't enough anymore... not being a good tennis player but being hot instead somehow is though.

young_gunner913
Dec 26th, 2012, 03:24 PM
@jimmie your irrational hatred towards anna is not a bright spot either,imo. Yes,she was definitely not popular for her tennis,but she definitely contributed in making women's tennis popular. In my opinion,she deserves the mention for that. And she didn't do anything criminal to get as popular as she was. If public worships her swimsuit posters,i think major part of responsibility goes to them,rather than her.

Don't worry, he had irrational hatred towards Azarenka and look at his avy now. :)

Chrissie-fan
Dec 26th, 2012, 03:41 PM
To a degree, yes. If a player is popular and successful like Sharapova is now, that is healthy. But if the most popular player dosen't have any results to back it up it makes tennis even weaker looking in from the outside as everybody assume that people just watch because a player is hot. Is that what we need? It gets attention but not all attention is good... it diminishes the actual sport to be a sideshow and that's not what we need at all.
Well, the media hype around Kournikova was to some degree based not only on how hot she was but also on the prospect of a player as hot as her being one of the main contenders of her generation. And in the early years of Kournikova mania, say from 1997-2000 there was every reason to believe that she would indeed be a future great. It's not only her good looks that created the hype. If her career high ranking had been #100 she probably would still have been more popular than other players with a similar ranking, but nowhere near to what it was. It's the combination of expectations about what her future as a player would look like and her hotness that made her a superstar.

fouc
Dec 26th, 2012, 03:41 PM
Sharapova by far...

ur kidding right? i remember everyone in school new kournikova even though i had no idea whatsoever about tennis. she was the only phenomenon where tennis made it to the very mainstream. sharapova is also very popular, but it's not even close.

Gaby Gasparyan
Dec 26th, 2012, 03:44 PM
A "dark spot" in tennis history from which womens tennis as a whole and Russian tennis especially has benefitted. Like it or not, to popularize an individual sport like tennis it needs charismatic players to sell the game to a wider audience. Not just great players, but charismatic players that put asses on seats and that the media are interested in. And although some other players were jealous of Kournikova at the time, they too profitted from the fact that Kournikova was so popular. Tennis is a star driven sport. There's no 'home team' in tennis like in football or basketball which in itself already creates a big fanbase. Tennis needs the Kournikova's and Sharapova's of this world.

Besides, hype or not, Kournikova WAS a good player. Not as good as Maria or some of Anna's contemporaries, but she was nevertheless a good player and for awhile (before injuries made it impossible) it looked like she would even be one of the greats of her time.

I like your posts, they're very good. :)

I think Paul Weller sumed it up perfectly - 'That's Entertainment'.

viktory
Dec 26th, 2012, 03:56 PM
Well, the media hype around Kournikova was to some degree based not only on how hot she was but also on the prospect of a player as hot as her being one of the main contenders of her generation. And in the early years of Kournikova mania, say from 1997-2000 there was every reason to believe that she would indeed be a future great. It's not only her good looks that created the hype. If her career high ranking had been #100 she probably would still have been more popular than other players with a similar ranking, but nowhere near to what it was. It's the combination of expectations about what her future as a player would look like and her hotness that made her a superstar.

couldn't have said it better myself.

Annie.
Dec 26th, 2012, 04:19 PM
At least in the US, Sharapova is known almost exclusively to tennis fans. A lot of people who don't follow tennis couldn't name her. Kournikova back in the day was known to tennis fans and the rest of the public. As others have said, she was all over sports, fashion and gossip magazines, appeared in that Iglesias music video and there was that computer virus :lol: Even though she failed to win any singles titles, Kournikova frequently played her matches on the main/center courts at slams and big tennis events because organizers could count on her to fill seats.

THIS!! People still love Kournikova here in the US.

Stonerpova
Dec 26th, 2012, 04:32 PM
I'm sure Kournikova was probably more popular (I was about 7 when Kournikova was in her prime, so I'm not really knowledgeable to answer this question), but honestly who gives a shit? They're both beautiful, blonde, and glamorous. You're splitting hairs at this point.

Papi
Dec 26th, 2012, 04:38 PM
Kournikova paved the way for Sharapova.

JamieOwen3
Dec 26th, 2012, 04:49 PM
I like both but it doesn't really matter, Anna was gone at 21 with her injuries. Maria at 25 has a career slam and is in the history books for her tennis achievements.

http://i1014.photobucket.com/albums/af264/JamieOwen3/5nuclf.jpg

KournikovaFan91
Dec 26th, 2012, 05:01 PM
I'm not sure any female sports star will have the popularity level of Kournikova, at her peak she was one of the most famous people in the world, on the same level as Hollywood a-listers.

NashaMasha
Dec 26th, 2012, 05:16 PM
Kournikova was the first real tennis star , "Miss Tennis" , who opened the way for Sharapova, Ivanovic etc.
Her peak of popularity was extremely high and really incomparable with the popularity of other tennis players of that time.

But Sharapova's peak was even higher. Her win over Serena at Wimbledon was like an atomic bomb explosion, it's not a peak of popularity, it's more like absolute maximum of popularity , an extremum.

even checking google trends it's hard to find a person who reached higher peak in media coverage than Pova in 2004.... Even reelection of G.Bush doesn't reach that peak

http://www.google.com/trends/explore#q=sharapova%2C%20george%20bush%2C%20Serena %20Williams%2C%20kournikova&date=5%2F2004%208m&cmpt=q

harloo
Dec 26th, 2012, 05:29 PM
Anna Kournikova's popularity transcended tennis regardless of the fact that she never won a WTA tournament. Despite my dislike of what she represented Anna was a household name that people recognized. She was naturally beautiful and gifted as a tennis player even though she never possessed mental toughness on court.

On the other hand, Maria's popularity came from the tennis establishment's hunger for a waif like blond champion(not her fault). This is why Maria was openly accepted and promoted by the WTA and the USTA to become the next superstar. They wanted a replacement for Ana hence all the unnecessary hype and falsehoods the commentators told during her earlier matches.

Maria still gets a smidgen of hype but now the commentators and tennis experts alike have slowed down on the praise due to Maria's results. They assumed Maria would be dominating the tour by now but that hasn't happened. She's let Azarenka come into the picture who isn't considered pretty by euro standards.

Kournikova was the originator and gave Maria the blueprint for success. To think if Ana just won one slam she would have racked up in every department. Hell, even without a WTA tournament win she was making more money than all of the top ten at the time.

Stonerpova
Dec 26th, 2012, 05:32 PM
Anna Kournikova's popularity transcended tennis regardless of the fact that she never won a WTA tournament. Despite my dislike of what she represented Anna was a household name that people recognized. She was naturally beautiful and gifted as a tennis player even though she never possessed mental toughness on court.

On the other hand, Maria's popularity came from the tennis establishment's hunger for a waif like blond champion(not her fault). This is why Maria was openly accepted and promoted by the WTA and the USTA to become the next superstar. They wanted a replacement for Ana hence all the unnecessary hype and falsehoods the commentators told during her earlier matches.

Maria still gets a smidgen of hype but now the commentators and tennis experts alike have slowed down on the praise due to Maria's results. They assumed Maria would be dominating the tour by now but that hasn't happened. She's let Azarenka come into the picture who isn't considered pretty by euro standards.

Kournikova was the originator and gave Maria the blueprint for success. To think if Ana just won one slam she would have racked up in every department. Hell, even without a WTA tournament win she was making more money than all of the top ten at the time.

If that's true they must have HATED her :lol:

fouc
Dec 26th, 2012, 05:33 PM
Kournikova was the first real tennis star , "Miss Tennis" , who opened the way for Sharapova, Ivanovic etc.
Her peak of popularity was extremely high and really incomparable with the popularity of other tennis players of that time.

But Sharapova's peak was even higher. Her win over Serena at Wimbledon was like an atomic bomb explosion, it's not a peak of popularity, it's more like absolute maximum of popularity , an extremum.

even checking google trends it's hard to find a person who reached higher peak in media coverage than Pova in 2004.... Even reelection of G.Bush doesn't reach that peak

http://www.google.com/trends/explore#q=sharapova%2C%20george%20bush%2C%20Serena %20Williams%2C%20kournikova&date=5%2F2004%208m&cmpt=q

lol i actually thought you're actually making some point for once :LOL: back in 2004 i sure as hell knew Kournikova, and for 100% I had absolutely no idea that Sharapova defeated Serena in Wimbledon :lol: Just as all my friends who weren't into tennis.

Trickle
Dec 26th, 2012, 05:52 PM
Kournikova was the first real tennis star , "Miss Tennis" , who opened the way for Sharapova, Ivanovic etc.
Her peak of popularity was extremely high and really incomparable with the popularity of other tennis players of that time.

But Sharapova's peak was even higher. Her win over Serena at Wimbledon was like an atomic bomb explosion, it's not a peak of popularity, it's more like absolute maximum of popularity , an extremum.

even checking google trends it's hard to find a person who reached higher peak in media coverage than Pova in 2004.... Even reelection of G.Bush doesn't reach that peak

http://www.google.com/trends/explore#q=sharapova%2C%20george%20bush%2C%20Serena %20Williams%2C%20kournikova&date=5%2F2004%208m&cmpt=q

You're right, Maria winning Wimbledon at 17 was probably the biggest media story related to a single individual in 2004.

http://i47.tinypic.com/11b21rr.png

Even Roger Federer has never been able to court attention the way Maria did in 2004. Even from 2004 onwards, people were looking for Maria on the internet moreso than Roger, that could be attested to young teenage boys looking up pictures of her, to touch themselves with, who knows. But Roger started to surpass her at the end of 2008 when she was off with her shoulder ordeal.

http://i50.tinypic.com/b5ksuf.png

Even Nadal and his ass has never been able beat her.

The two ATP titans against Miss Sharapova, and she bludgeons them media-wise at her peak. :lol:

Like I said in my previous post, I WISH google trends was around the late 90s-early 2000s. :p

sammy01
Dec 26th, 2012, 06:01 PM
If that's true they must have HATED her :lol:

They did. Not as a person but more for what she represented.

I remember when ACE magazine used to do their annual 'rich list' Anna always used to top it and a couple of lines stuck in my head one year "whilst it may have been another blank year on court title wise for Anna, it was another year of blank cheques".

Start da Game
Dec 26th, 2012, 06:01 PM
tennis was very popular among teenagers in 2004 and 2005......after the retirements of sampras and company, most of the old timers stopped following the sport and left it for teenagers who instantly got attracted to flashy models who could also hold a tennis racket......

as for federer being searched a lot around late 2009, lots of global sheep read in print media and watched on tele that somebody broke somebody's all time slams record(sampras's 14 slams) in tennis.......they searched the name and jumped on the bandwagon.......

nadal is the only genuine search in that google trends map......

Gaby Gasparyan
Dec 26th, 2012, 06:06 PM
Kournikova was the first real tennis star , "Miss Tennis" , who opened the way for Sharapova, Ivanovic etc.
Her peak of popularity was extremely high and really incomparable with the popularity of other tennis players of that time.

But Sharapova's peak was even higher. Her win over Serena at Wimbledon was like an atomic bomb explosion, it's not a peak of popularity, it's more like absolute maximum of popularity , an extremum.

even checking google trends it's hard to find a person who reached higher peak in media coverage than Pova in 2004.... Even reelection of G.Bush doesn't reach that peak

http://www.google.com/trends/explore#q=sharapova%2C%20george%20bush%2C%20Serena %20Williams%2C%20kournikova&date=5%2F2004%208m&cmpt=q

It reached, 69th best [UK] TV moment of 2004 (on a Channel 4 poll)

Craig.
Dec 26th, 2012, 06:12 PM
DEAD @ EVERYONE knowing who Kournikova was/is. What a load of BS :lol:

Defs more well known than Maria though.

dsanders06
Dec 26th, 2012, 06:13 PM
Kournikova was more famous, Sharapova is/was more popular and has more actual fans :shrug:

Doesn't Sabatini have a case of once being more famous than either of them though? After all, tennis had MUCH higher global popularity when she was around than when Kournikova emerged (despite this strange TF myth that 1999-03 was the "golden age), and she was meant to be the Kournikova of her day :shrug:

Brad[le]y.
Dec 26th, 2012, 06:14 PM
God knows I give Sharapova a lot of shit for her off-court activities but this really is a no-brainer. Sharapova at least has the results to justify the hype around her, she's tennis player first and foremost.

It's still a dark spot in tennis history that a player who never won anything (please don't start mentioning doubles titles...) got to be as popular as Kournikova was..in hindsight everyone should be embarrassed.

Why do doubles not count? :lol: There are people elected into the Tennis Hall of Fame entirely on doubles results. :lol:

And Kournikova reached a Wimbledon SF and the next year made the Miami final beating four top ten players en route. It's not like she never did anything.

Gaby Gasparyan
Dec 26th, 2012, 06:28 PM
Kournikova was more famous, Sharapova is/was more popular and has more actual fans :shrug:

Doesn't Sabatini have a case of once being more famous than either of them though? After all, tennis had MUCH higher global popularity when she was around than when Kournikova emerged (despite this strange TF myth that 1999-03 was the "golden age), and she was meant to be the Kournikova of her day :shrug:

I don't think so. Among tennis fans yes but, general public....I don't think so. In the 80's many casual fans/joe public knew who Steffi was, as much as they did who Gaby was

Today there's so much more media attention, the internet and just look at how many times WTA players appear in the likes of ladz mags....

And before Gaby was Carling Bassett. I just think the more years go on, the more the most (thought of) attractive players have a wider audience, that's all

hablo
Dec 26th, 2012, 06:35 PM
Kournikova. :lol:

Gagsquet
Dec 26th, 2012, 06:38 PM
Kournikova prime was Petit as final. She went downhill after this peak.

WhatTheDeuce
Dec 26th, 2012, 06:46 PM
Well, the media hype around Kournikova was to some degree based not only on how hot she was but also on the prospect of a player as hot as her being one of the main contenders of her generation. And in the early years of Kournikova mania, say from 1997-2000 there was every reason to believe that she would indeed be a future great. It's not only her good looks that created the hype. If her career high ranking had been #100 she probably would still have been more popular than other players with a similar ranking, but nowhere near to what it was. It's the combination of expectations about what her future as a player would look like and her hotness that made her a superstar.
Well said.

Julian.
Dec 26th, 2012, 06:57 PM
Kournikova was way more popular, there was no person who didn't know who she is.
Not the case with Sharapova....

The one I bolded is not true :sobbing:

Roookie
Dec 26th, 2012, 06:58 PM
Kournikova. She was a household name. Sharapova isn't.

The biggest female tennis superstar in the world is not a household name. :bs:

hankqq
Dec 26th, 2012, 07:08 PM
Granted that she is way more popular in Asia, Europe compared to the States it is ridiculous to say that; this statement just reeks of plain hatred, like seriously.
It has nothing to do with my dislike of Sharapova :lol: What I said is simply the truth. Whether you want to accept it or not is just your own personal issue.

young_gunner913
Dec 26th, 2012, 07:14 PM
The biggest female tennis superstar in the world is not a household name. :bs:

Not in the United States. Not like Kournikova was and still is.

Raiden
Dec 26th, 2012, 07:27 PM
Kournikova, and it's not even close.

She's THE tennis babe by which all others are measured.

And lest we forget, Pova herself was early on constantly compared to AK, who was a real household name, known by people who never watched any of her matches.

At one point she was on television day after day, every day! (e.g on David Letterman show in some sort of a running joke involving her moving in slow motion).

Oh and in a couple of tennis-midget countries like Holland, Kournikova is still equally renowned even today (!)
.

NashaMasha
Dec 26th, 2012, 07:29 PM
people in this thread are forgetting that Sharapova is also very popular in China and India and it is about 1/3 of population

Raiden
Dec 26th, 2012, 07:45 PM
people in this thread are forgetting that Sharapova is also very popular in China and India and it is about 1/3 of population
You're talking about present situation. Obviously Sharap is more popular overall nowadays.

But that's not the question asked.

Kasey
Dec 26th, 2012, 07:51 PM
Kurnikova by far. Pova is known only among razor producers and just as an example of what non shaving may lead to.

tennismaster8820
Dec 26th, 2012, 07:56 PM
The one I bolded is not true :sobbing:

It was pretty much true, unless you have taken it literally.
She was appearing EVERYWHERE, in all magazines, TV shows, it didn't have to be about tennis.
It was uncomparable with Sharapova's popularity.

HRHoliviasmith
Dec 26th, 2012, 08:05 PM
It was pretty much true, unless you have taken it literally.
She was appearing EVERYWHERE, in all magazines, TV shows, it didn't have to be about tennis.
It was uncomparable with Sharapova's popularity.

Exactly. When was the last time that individual has been on a major magazine cover? 2004? Shouldn't someone of her "popularity and status" have covered UNITED STATES Vogue, GQ, InStyle, Glamour, etc, etc... and all the other major fashion magazines by now since she's, like, "a fashion icon" and stuff? Everytime I turn around she's in some obscure foreign publication. :rolleyes:

Didn't Anna make the cover of SI just for being Anna?

Cecig
Dec 26th, 2012, 08:09 PM
Well, Maria is the cover for Glamour Russia

Sammo
Dec 26th, 2012, 08:14 PM
Well, Maria is the cover for Glamour Russia

:spit:

Oh you were serious...

From what I've read here and from the images I've seen from the actual photoshot that magazine is crap

JamieOwen3
Dec 26th, 2012, 08:17 PM
What exactly is the relevance of the thread? :lol: It only once again started arguments.

I'm sure Maria has had plenty of chances to do SI since 2006 *her first and last one* but she said during the making of that one that she wasn't sure she would be doing it again so to enjoy that one. No doubt her popularity with people who don't give a shit about tennis would be higher *just like Anna was when she did her hot bikini shoots*

Stonerpova
Dec 26th, 2012, 08:19 PM
What exactly is the relevance of the thread? :lol: It only once again started arguments.

I'm sure Maria has had plenty of chances to do SI since 2006 *her first and last one* but she said during the making of that one that she wasn't sure she would be doing it again so to enjoy that one. No doubt her popularity with people who don't give a shit about tennis would be higher *just like Anna was when she did her hot bikini shoots*

Just look at who started it :lol:

heavyhorse
Dec 26th, 2012, 08:33 PM
Kournikova, definitely.

Yeah, that's not what happened...

That's exactly what happened. Over the years Anna's tennis deteriorated because she would spend more time doing commercials and modelling than she would playing tennis. She was a talented player but she chose money and fame over tennis.

Trickle
Dec 26th, 2012, 08:54 PM
What exactly is the relevance of the thread? :lol: It only once again started arguments.


People making the most of the few days of off-season left. Woohoo. :cool:

NashaMasha
Dec 26th, 2012, 08:54 PM
:spit:

Oh you were serious...

From what I've read here and from the images I've seen from the actual photoshot that magazine is crap

this crap is one of the most popular women's magazines in Russia

Sammo
Dec 26th, 2012, 08:58 PM
this crap is one of the most popular women's magazines in Russia

I guess that says a lot about Russia :spit:

No I'm just kidding, the magazine is a total crap though, successful or not

tennisbum79
Dec 26th, 2012, 09:00 PM
With all due respect to Anna K.,, not only is Maria more popular than Anna, furthermore, notwithstanding some of her fans on this TF, Maria's popularity is backed and sustained by a more serious and adult base than Anna K support, which is largely made up of pre-adolescents and teens, with very little interest in tennis, and who were more invested in how Anna looks and/or what she was wearing. Anna was well aware of this, she often talks it up in her press conferences. Flirting with the press, stressing the importance of her looks, etc...

Very few adults in the tennis world talk about Anna’s tennis in a serious way; when they do, the conversation quickly veered in an aspirational direction... pointing out what Anna needs to do become a serious and viable player.

Outside of tennis, Anna was known for her looks. Yes, people knew she appears in tennis tournaments, but never viewed her more as tennis player, rather a sideshow.

ON the other hand, Maria is serious tennis player, and she does not have to do anything to convince people of that.
She does not pimp her looks as Anna K. seemed to do very often in press conferences, shamelessly

Viktymise
Dec 26th, 2012, 09:01 PM
Kournikova, obviously. Unless you were born about 10 years ago or something.

saint2
Dec 26th, 2012, 09:09 PM
can you stop this shit about how "everyone knew Kournikova" ? :o:o
I know people who don't know Kournikova, even some of them are occasionally tennis watchers, and no, they weren't born 10 years ago.

Viktymise
Dec 26th, 2012, 09:20 PM
Maybe it's a culture thing, but in "Americanized" parts of the world, Anna Kournikova was a big fucking deal. It's not about how much she achieved or whatever. It's about, as people have said, how she transcended the sport to be more than just a tennis player. She was one of the most famous people on the planet. Maria Sharapova has never reached the same heights of notoriety.

NashaMasha
Dec 26th, 2012, 09:22 PM
Maybe it's a culture thing, but in "Americanized" parts of the world, Anna Kournikova was a big fucking deal. It's not about how much she achieved or whatever. It's about, as people have said, how she transcended the sport to be more than just a tennis player. She was one of the most famous people on the planet. Maria Sharapova has never reached the same heights of notoriety.


one remark , it's about USA and probably some european countries ..... it's not even a 1/7 of the World

Jimmie48
Dec 26th, 2012, 09:24 PM
Maybe it's a culture thing, but in "Americanized" parts of the world, Anna Kournikova was a big fucking deal. It's not about how much she achieved or whatever. It's about, as people have said, how she transcended the sport to be more than just a tennis player. She was one of the most famous people on the planet. Maria Sharapova has never reached the same heights of notoriety.

Let's just agree on that she was bigger than Jesus....

Chrissie-fan
Dec 26th, 2012, 09:35 PM
Over the years Anna's tennis deteriorated because she would spend more time doing commercials and modelling than she would playing tennis. She was a talented player but she chose money and fame over tennis.
Her tennis deteriorated because of back and foot injuries.

Alejandrawrrr
Dec 26th, 2012, 09:49 PM
Maybe it's a culture thing, but in "Americanized" parts of the world, Anna Kournikova was a big fucking deal. It's not about how much she achieved or whatever. It's about, as people have said, how she transcended the sport to be more than just a tennis player. She was one of the most famous people on the planet. Maria Sharapova has never reached the same heights of notoriety.

Yeah, one of my first tennis-related memories is my brother drooling(and god knows what else :unsure:) over Anna in my sister's People magazine in 2000 or 2001 :lol: We're not even a tennis household btw, I'm the only tennis fan in my family, so that was kind of a big deal. This thread actually inspired me to ask him if he remembered her and he quickly responded "oh yeah she's fckin' hot!" :lol: Maybe she wasn't famous for the right reasons, but at least in the US she was definitely widely known.

Dav.
Dec 26th, 2012, 10:11 PM
Kournikova, definitely.



That's exactly what happened. Over the years Anna's tennis deteriorated because she would spend more time doing commercials and modelling than she would playing tennis. She was a talented player but she chose money and fame over tennis.

She was only 21 and she couldn't continue anyway with her back the way it was. It's a chronic injury :shrug:

ZeroSumGame
Dec 26th, 2012, 10:34 PM
Isn't Kournikova one of 3 tennis players to ever pose naked in SI?
Tennis-wise Maria is more well known ...looks wise Kournikova!!

saint2
Dec 26th, 2012, 10:35 PM
Isn't Kournikova one of 3 tennis players to ever pose naked in SI?
Tennis-wise Maria is more well known ...looks wise Kournikova!!


WHAAT ???

denny5576
Dec 26th, 2012, 11:37 PM
I cannot understand why are all these discussions who is more popular when the things are clear. The players are in completely different conditions. Women tennis never ever was so popular like it is now. Internet completely changed the environment. For example Hingis and Kournikova were not able to take the advantage of Internet like Sharapova and Venus, Serena, Caro and all currently active players. The TV hours from the tournaments had increased dramatically, TV reached new territories and many millions new customers, which automatically increased the popularity of the current players. Before 2004 Kournikova was at least 3 times more popular than Sharapova even on internet. But after that Sharapova went far ahead. In July 2004 Sharapova was more than 5 times more popular than Kournikova. The average from 2004 till today is double popularity of Maria over Anna.
The same story is with Venus and Hingis. Venus is approximately 1.5 times more popular then Martina. But without Internet that ratio could have been in favour of Martina.

madmax
Dec 27th, 2012, 12:06 AM
how do you TF folks define "popular" anyway?
Is it exclusively tennis watching crowd? The whole population all over the world? Media "darling"?
If you sum up all of these, then Maria has no equals amongst all female athletes of all time. If you wanna argue that Anna was more popular because of her looks and was more of a celebrity than a tennis player, then it's fine too, but like denny already said, today's social media and tennis popularity is incomparable to pre-internet days. Therefore I'm pretty sure more people have heard of Sharapova's name than Kournikova's up untill now through one channel or another...

denny5576
Dec 27th, 2012, 12:07 AM
What a waste.

You obviously have difficulty understanding the concept that Kournikova transcended the sport.

All the tennis/WTA popularity stats you threw around are (apart from them not being true) totally irrelevant.
Sharapova transcended the sport, much more than Kournikova.
Read first some literature about the subject of popularity and then speak.

dsanders06
Dec 27th, 2012, 12:22 AM
In fairness, someone did raise a legit point about Maria being absolutely HUGE in China and Japan, she really is one of the best known athletes (male or female) there....I genuinely don't know one way or the other if Kournikova was as well. But there's no doubt Kournikova is more famous in the Western world.

babsi
Dec 27th, 2012, 12:35 AM
Anna retired in 2003 and over time the interest has dropped - she has done less and less PR appearances, not around as much.

When Maria retires I think she could be the first crossover tennis player - meaning years after she has retired she will be in the public eye and the interest will still be there - not too sure what she will be doing but there was a reason that SugarPova was set up...

tennisbum79
Dec 27th, 2012, 12:45 AM
Anna retired in 2003 and over time the interest has dropped - she has done less and less PR appearances, not around as much.

When Maria retires I think she could be the first crossover tennis player - meaning years after she has retired she will be in the public eye and the interest will still be there - not too sure what she will be doing but there was a reason that SugarPova was set up...
That would be nice, but highly doubtful.

What will she do to stay in the public eye?

Aaside from her appearance with sponsors, I have not seen her in more civic, non-commercial setting advocating for any cause. She does not seem to have that inclincation.

Maybe she could become a tennis commentator, but it remained to be seen if that appeals to her.

sammy01
Dec 27th, 2012, 12:58 AM
Anna retired in 2003 and over time the interest has dropped - she has done less and less PR appearances, not around as much.

When Maria retires I think she could be the first crossover tennis player - meaning years after she has retired she will be in the public eye and the interest will still be there - not too sure what she will be doing but there was a reason that SugarPova was set up...

I highly doubt Sharapova will be anything of note after tennis. On a scale of hotness she is decent but was never in kournikova's league of hotness (anyone who had one of anna's official calenders usually had the pages all stuck together by Jan 2nd). Sharapova's main selling point is she is the prettiest of the current tennis champions. If she was ranked 12 and average or not playing she would basically be a 2nd rate kirilenko popularity wise.

Sharapova's main selling point has always been being a winner and as soon as that stops she will be pretty much irrelevant. She would have never been a blip on the radar had she had kournikova's career, which tells you how popular Anna really was and how beautiful that she was, as sh was basically seen as average (unfairly) on court, but it didn't matter as she had the face and body of every boy's wet dream.

olivero
Dec 27th, 2012, 01:11 AM
I'd say it is closer than some of the posters suggest but still Anna wins. She was one of the global sex symbols in her prime, just like someone said it well 'Pamela Anderson of sport'. I think Steffi, Martina and Anna were the most regonizable tennis players in the late 90's, before WS stole the show (at least in my country). People who think she's is famous mostly for dating Enrique are clueless.
Obviously Maria is more popular now because she's at her peak atm, plus she's far more accomplished as a player. But still it's not the same level as Anna around 2000.

In The Zone
Dec 27th, 2012, 01:20 AM
Kournikova, easy.

faboozadoo15
Jan 5th, 2013, 07:31 AM
I'm not sure any female sports star will have the popularity level of Kournikova, at her peak she was one of the most famous people in the world, on the same level as Hollywood a-listers.

That's BS. Unless you have a long list of Hollywood A-listers.

I don't think anyone doubts that Anna probably had the highest level of fame of any female sports star ever. However, hardly anyone knows who she is now.

Meanwhile Sharapova has been the highest earning and most searched female athlete on the planet for the past decade.

If you currently sampled a target 18-40 year old group of men and women, Sharapova would win in popularity and recognition hands down.

faboozadoo15
Jan 5th, 2013, 07:36 AM
y.;22628949']Why do doubles not count? :lol: There are people elected into the Tennis Hall of Fame entirely on doubles results. :lol:


Hold up. Are you talking about Pam Shriver who won 19 more doubles majors, reached #3 in the world and won 21 titles in singles as well?

faboozadoo15
Jan 5th, 2013, 07:37 AM
Not in the United States. Not like Kournikova was and still is.

If you think more people are buzzing about Anna Kournikova than Maria Sharapova, then you must hang around with a bunch of people who haven't left home in a decade and are wanking to back issues of Maxim.

HRHoliviasmith
Jan 5th, 2013, 07:49 AM
Anna retired in 2003 and over time the interest has dropped - she has done less and less PR appearances, not around as much.

When Maria retires I think she could be the first crossover tennis player - meaning years after she has retired she will be in the public eye and the interest will still be there - not too sure what she will be doing but there was a reason that SugarPova was set up...

sorry but this is bull. :lol:

sammy01
Jan 5th, 2013, 07:53 AM
I have no idea why Sharapova and Serena fans have such trouble on this forum ever admitting someone may have eclipsed them at something at some point. It is like if their fans think by admitting this they are calling them shit, which is just not true.

donniedarkofan
Jan 5th, 2013, 08:16 AM
Kournikova could walk through my town and no one would even notice her.
Hell, I know people who watch tennis occasionally and don't know who Kournikova is.

Sharapova is ONLY recognizable female athlete in my country, except for Radwanska, and maybe WS (but to way lesser degree)
:lol: What a load of BS.
Please stop talking crap about Poland, beacuse to say that Korunikova was never popular here is just so far away from truth that I'm worried if you're ok.

duhcity
Jan 5th, 2013, 08:49 AM
Anna has stayed in the public eye - dating Enrique, working on the biggest loser etc.

Wasn't there a poll done like 3 years ago for American households, listing the top 5 women tennis players: It went Graf, Evert, Serena, Maria, and Anna in no particular order.

If anything, it's Kournikova that transcended the sport. Maria has continually been linked to tennis, but I have no doubt she, and Serena, will be celebrities after they retire as well.

GAGAlady
Jan 5th, 2013, 09:07 AM
Maria is bigger

saint2
Jan 5th, 2013, 09:15 AM
:lol: What a load of BS.
Please stop talking crap about Poland, beacuse to say that Korunikova was never popular here is just so far away from truth that I'm worried if you're ok.

She wasn't. Unless you followed tennis, or was reading tabloid press, you had no business in knowing who Kournikova is.

dencod16
Jan 5th, 2013, 10:18 AM
I like Sharapova more, but i have to say Kournikova even now she is still very popular.

dencod16
Jan 5th, 2013, 10:21 AM
Anna has stayed in the public eye - dating Enrique, working on the biggest loser etc.

Wasn't there a poll done like 3 years ago for American households, listing the top 5 women tennis players: It went Graf, Evert, Serena, Maria, and Anna in no particular order.

If anything, it's Kournikova that transcended the sport. Maria has continually been linked to tennis, but I have no doubt she, and Serena, will be celebrities after they retire as well.

I think they still will be, but not in the rate of Kournikova is.

Becool
Jan 5th, 2013, 10:22 AM
Kournikova was an OK tennis player and yet she was extremely popular, imagine if she was a GS champion what would've been.

HotSpot
Jan 5th, 2013, 10:25 AM
Kournikova..

SerenaSiren
Jan 5th, 2013, 10:26 AM
i dont get it why Kournikova got higher votes than Maria
I mean Seriously its Maria Sharapova..I'm not even a fan...
but u guys aren't credible.. :wavey:

Brad[le]y.
Jan 5th, 2013, 10:28 AM
Hold up. Are you talking about Pam Shriver who won 19 more doubles majors, reached #3 in the world and won 21 titles in singles as well?

Natasha Zvereva.

donniedarkofan
Jan 5th, 2013, 10:31 AM
She wasn't. Unless you followed tennis, or was reading tabloid press, you had no business in knowing who Kournikova is.

Seriously, you have no idea what you're talking about. How old are you? In 1998 random polish tv stations and radio stations reported how this young beautiful child tennis prodigy beat 4 Top Ten players in one tournament and her name was Anna Korunikova. That's how I heard about her in the first place. I didn't follow tennis and I was far too young to be interested in tabloid press. People quickly became aware of her good looks, almost half od the guys in my school were crazy for her, even though they didn't give a damn about tennis. So you're wrong. Big time.

Kournikova was known not only by tennis fans and sports fans but also by horny dudes, jealous girls. Her fame is far beyond what Sharapova's is, despite her obvious lack of big results. Get over it.

saint2
Jan 5th, 2013, 10:35 AM
Seriously, you have no idea what you're talking about. How old are you?

Old enough to not spam other people PMs and not insult others over nonsense.
And old enough to actually follow tennis (though more ATP) during Kournikova prime.


That's how I heard about her in the first place. I didn't follow tennis and I was far too young to be interested in tabloid press. People quickly became aware of her good looks, almost half od the guys in my school were crazy for her, even though they didn't give a damn about tennis. So you're wrong. Big time.

Don't know a single man who went crazy over Kournikova. I know people who actually follow tennis occasionally and don't know who Kournikova is. I speak only from my experience.

donniedarkofan
Jan 5th, 2013, 10:36 AM
Anna has stayed in the public eye - dating Enrique, working on the biggest loser etc.

Wasn't there a poll done like 3 years ago for American households, listing the top 5 women tennis players: It went Graf, Evert, Serena, Maria, and Anna in no particular order.

If anything, it's Kournikova that transcended the sport. Maria has continually been linked to tennis, but I have no doubt she, and Serena, will be celebrities after they retire as well.

Yes, Anna stayed in the public light, but it's not like she threw herself out there. There were tons and tons of deals for her, but she concentrated on charity work. From 2002 she works with multiple charities, she's doing so much for kids all over the world, she uses her fame the best way she can. She visited hospitals, schools, universities etc, she is an active participant of the programme that is promoting fitness and healthy way of life.

donniedarkofan
Jan 5th, 2013, 10:42 AM
Old enough to not spam other people PMs and not insult others over nonsense.
And old enough to actually follow tennis (though more ATP) during Kournikova prime.




Don't know a single man who went crazy over Kournikova. I know people who actually follow tennis occasionally and don't know who Kournikova is. I speak only from my experience.

Reasonable PM isn't a spam. If you're old enough, then I'm even more amazed how on earth you can say the things you've said. People who follow tennis occasionally from, let's say, 2004 may not know who Anna Kournikova is. I refuse to belive that there is a single person who followed tennis in 2000,2001 and 2002 without knowing who Kournikova is. The same goes for Sharapova, of course, but Anna was far more popular back in the day.

**mashafierce**
Jan 5th, 2013, 10:43 AM
Obviously far too many posters on here were too young to have experienced the Kournikova couple of years where she was tennis. Sharapova may earn more money these days but then inflation has gone through the roof.

The days when the Sun newspaper would post any stories just to have pictures of her in it, FHM's readers voted her the sexiest woman in the world, celeb gossip mags couldn't get enough of her and Enrique.

She completely transcended tennis. The world has moved on in terms of women's sports and money will forever be rising, but Kournikova for a brief period was as hot property as anyone can get.

I agree . Kournikova changed the face of women's tennis .She still is one of the most recognisable athletes .

saint2
Jan 5th, 2013, 10:45 AM
Reasonable PM isn't a spam. If you're old enough, then I'm even more amazed how on earth you can say the things you've said. People who follow tennis occasionally from, let's say, 2004 may not know who Anna Kournikova is. I refuse to belive that there is a single person who followed tennis in 2000,2001 and 2002 without knowing who Kournikova is. The same goes for Sharapova, of course, but Anna was far more popular back in the day.


The people Im speaking about actually went for Radwanska hype :lol::lol::lol:
People who followed tennis before obviously knew who Kournikova was, but its not like she was biggest thing on earth...
All I spoke here comes from my own experience. You act like your honor was hurt by my statement. Its unnesecary.

donniedarkofan
Jan 5th, 2013, 11:59 AM
The people Im speaking about actually went for Radwanska hype :lol::lol::lol:
People who followed tennis before obviously knew who Kournikova was, but its not like she was biggest thing on earth...
All I spoke here comes from my own experience. You act like your honor was hurt by my statement. Its unnesecary.

But it's only beacuse you were telling people no one cares for Kournikova in Poland, while Sharapova is the most famous female athlete in our country, which is obviously not true. Anyway, no bad feelings, sorry if you felt offended.

olivero
Jan 5th, 2013, 12:04 PM
She wasn't. Unless you followed tennis, or was reading tabloid press, you had no business in knowing who Kournikova is.

That is not true. A lot of my friends who are not interested in tennis know Anna (and knew her back in the days). Same with the members of my family. They also recognise her as a tennis player and many of them have no idea she's dating Enrique ;)
She was very popular in the late 90s, more than Maria is now.

The Dawntreader
Jan 5th, 2013, 12:08 PM
Kournikova. She transcended tennis. The first genuine tennis celebrity.

Olórin
Jan 5th, 2013, 12:23 PM
That's BS. Unless you have a long list of Hollywood A-listers.

I don't think anyone doubts that Anna probably had the highest level of fame of any female sports star ever. However, hardly anyone knows who she is now.

Meanwhile Sharapova has been the highest earning and most searched female athlete on the planet for the past decade.

If you currently sampled a target 18-40 year old group of men and women, Sharapova would win in popularity and recognition hands down.

I agree. Kournikova's popularity is definitely overrated on this board. She was definitely one of the most known tennis players of her day male or female, and better known than Martina Hingis 97-99, which is impressive on its own. But level of hollywood A-Listers? (I think an argument could be made for Serena or Sharapova being A Listers now as they have both been the premier names in women's sports for so long now).

People continue to confuse being the object of tabloid attention as genuine "fame" or "popularity". It's a sad indictment of the culture we live in. That is only one aspect of it. Being most searched for on google is only one aspect of fame as well (unless Psy is now a bigger star in music than ADELE). With regards to Sharapova, a lot of her fame and popularity to this day stem from her Wimbledon win in 2004 and her subsequent US Open win in 2006 for which she garnered so much press coverage, solidified her status as commercial darling etc. You need those "peak" moments in the sun as well as overall public awareness and newspaper coverage to reach anything approaching A-Lister status, awareness/fame.

As for staying the public eye by being married to Enrique as someone mentioned (no that it is relevant to the question how popular Anna was in her prime), I remember when Enrique went on a UK talk show and his wife was referred to as "that tennis girl". Right I can imagine "other" now inactive A-listers from the 90's such as Demi Moore or Meg Ryan being referred to in that way.

Laura_VeeFan
Jan 5th, 2013, 12:23 PM
Kournikova by far

donniedarkofan
Jan 5th, 2013, 12:32 PM
i dont get it why Kournikova got higher votes than Maria
I mean Seriously its Maria Sharapova..I'm not even a fan...
but u guys aren't credible.. :wavey:

Obviously you were in a coma or not born in 1999,2000,2001 and 2002 when Kournikova was at her prime. Kournikova was way and I mean WAY much more popular back then than Sharapova is now. Everyone wanted to see her, there were songs made for her, she was in a huge demand, movie producers were by her door when she stated she would like to have a small cameo in a movie, she was huge.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JhCVNasvwZA

Si_Hi
Jan 5th, 2013, 12:52 PM
Anna Kournikova was a celebrity who transcended tennis more than any other player before or since. No one even comes close.

somehow so true, lol

youngbuck
Jan 5th, 2013, 01:24 PM
Obviously you were in a coma or not born in 1999,2000,2001 and 2002 when Kournikova was at her prime. Kournikova was way and I mean WAY much more popular back then than Sharapova is now. Everyone wanted to see her, there were songs made for her, she was in a huge demand, movie producers were by her door when she stated she would like to have a small cameo in a movie, she was huge.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JhCVNasvwZA

If you go by those criteria Kim Kardashian trumps everyone. Kournikova's legacy isn't one to be proud of unlike Sharapova. What you achieved and how you will be remembered far outweighs hotness which Sharapova also has in spades. I really enjoyed her slam victories, real tennis fans go for glory, not the bikini shoots.

liuxuan
Jan 5th, 2013, 02:55 PM
I can only account for whats its like in britain, but for kournikova, Wimbledon 1997 was one of the biggest coming out parties of any sportsperson ever. Even though Hingis won, Kournikova WAS teh story of Wimbledon.

1997 was back in the days when only a minority used the interview so the national newspapers, in particular, the Sun, was the nation's way of tracking news and sport on a daily basis, and for that fortnight, Kournikova was on the front page pretty much every day, and few general fans could have told you the results of the other players. It meant that for the following 3 years until her results started to go downhill, Kournikova was the subject matter of about 95% of printed media in Britain about womens tennis - this is not an exxageration as normal reporting about wta finals was normaly a mere footnote at the side of the rugby or golf news, whereas any kind of noteworthy result of Anna's was either front page or back page news.

Sharapova has never had that kind of media domination over her peers.

Another thing - Kournikova actually WAS the victim of several injuries which hampered her progress when she was on the up.

She had come on leaps and bounds in 1998, from pushing Hingis in Australia, to the Miami final, to beating Hingis on clay, to the 4th round of RG. Coming into the grass court season, which was her best surface, attention in the media about her upcoming appearance at Wimbledon was at fever pitch. Watching her play at Eastbourne, she was actually playing outstanding grass court tennis and would have been one of the hot favourites. She pulled off the victory of her career in beating Steffi Graf - it was so unfortunate that she sprained her thumb in this match and had to pull out of her next match and then Wimbledon, as I genuinly believe 1998 could have been the year of the Russian 17 Year Old Wimbledon Champion.

Novotna or Tauziat wouldn't have been out-with anna's capabilities that year!

mystic ice cube
Jan 5th, 2013, 03:43 PM
Sharapova and it's not even close. Anna was a pin up to only a certain few young teens but Maria's status continues to be very popular worldwide, with tennis and outside of it.

égalité
Jan 5th, 2013, 03:54 PM
She was all hype!

Yes and all that hype made her more famous than Sharapova will ever be. :cheer:

Helen Lawson
Jan 5th, 2013, 04:08 PM
You need to follow tennis at least slightly to know who Sharapova is, but people who never followed tennis knew who Anna was.

Sammo
Jan 5th, 2013, 04:08 PM
Sharapova never had a video game.

iWill
Jan 5th, 2013, 04:17 PM
Are you guys serious?? Sharapova is 1000x more popular and famous than Anna Kournikova was/is. People who don't even watch tennis can pick Maria Sharapova out on the street, shes's been all over tv marketing different products so I think her brand is way larger. Its kinda hard not to say Maria considering shes won a title before not to mention 4 Grand Slam singles.

Helen Lawson
Jan 5th, 2013, 04:22 PM
Are you guys serious?? Sharapova is 1000x more popular and famous than Anna Kournikova was/is. People who don't even watch tennis can pick Maria Sharapova out on the street, shes's been all over tv marketing different products so I think her brand is way larger. Its kinda hard not to say Maria considering shes won a title before not to mention 4 Grand Slam singles.

Right now? Yes. At their primes, not even close, when Anna was playing, she was saturated in the media, absolutely everywhere, it was insane, Martha is not anywhere near what that was when Anna was playing.

Alejandrawrrr
Jan 5th, 2013, 04:22 PM
If you go by those criteria Kim Kardashian trumps everyone. Kournikova's legacy isn't one to be proud of unlike Sharapova. What you achieved and how you will be remembered far outweighs hotness which Sharapova also has in spades. I really enjoyed her slam victories, real tennis fans go for glory, not the bikini shoots.

But that's not the poll question, it's "who was more popular in their prime?" not "who deserves more respect in tennis circles?" And if you're going to go down that road one can mention the fact that Sharapova's popularity utterly trumps the likes of Kim Clijsters, Justine Henin, and in most of the world both Williams Sisters as well, for the exact same reason Anna trumps her :shrug:

saint2
Jan 5th, 2013, 04:24 PM
But it's only beacuse you were telling people no one cares for Kournikova in Poland, while Sharapova is the most famous female athlete in our country, which is obviously not true. Anyway, no bad feelings, sorry if you felt offended.

You didn't offended me, you just acted like I offended you. I don't know why.
And yep, right now Sharapova is most popular female athlete in Poland, right after A-Rad.

Alejandrawrrr
Jan 5th, 2013, 04:34 PM
Are you guys serious?? Sharapova is 1000x more popular and famous than Anna Kournikova was/is. People who don't even watch tennis can pick Maria Sharapova out on the street, shes's been all over tv marketing different products so I think her brand is way larger. Its kinda hard not to say Maria considering shes won a title before not to mention 4 Grand Slam singles.

I have to say you're probably the first American I've met to say this. Everyone in my family is familiar with the name Sharapova but can't recognize her by face, I actually had to tell them who she was during the Olympics final. At least here in east coast USA, Kournikova early in the new millenium was approaching A-list celebrity status usually reserved for pop musicians and actors/actresses, while the most famous tennis players in the US Sharapova and the Williams Sisters(just so that it doesn't look like I'm just hating on Sharapova) are D-list at best. Maybe as tennis fans we have a distorted view on how the average joe sees the players we discuss 24/7 on these boards.

I do agree that Sharapova has probably made herself a bigger BRAND than Kournikova. She's a better businesswoman and makes far more money off of her name, but in terms of popularity in the western world it literally isn't even close.

madmax
Jan 5th, 2013, 04:35 PM
You need to follow tennis at least slightly to know who Sharapova is, but people who never followed tennis knew who Anna was.

no, you really don't have to:wavey:

Lilowannabe
Jan 5th, 2013, 04:36 PM
Anna was easily the most famous sportswoman in the world at one time, heck maybe even the most famous athlete in the world. Man or woman. Sharapova almost achieved that hype in 2004, but that brief few months was it in terms of Maria-mania.

HRHoliviasmith
Jan 5th, 2013, 04:38 PM
Are you guys serious?? Sharapova is 1000x more popular and famous than Anna Kournikova was/is. People who don't even watch tennis can pick Maria Sharapova out on the street, shes's been all over tv marketing different products so I think her brand is way larger. Its kinda hard not to say Maria considering shes won a title before not to mention 4 Grand Slam singles.

this is just not true.

Lilowannabe
Jan 5th, 2013, 04:41 PM
I have to say you're probably the first American I've met to say this. Everyone in my family is familiar with the name Sharapova but can't recognize her by face, I actually had to tell them who she was during the Olympics final. At least here in east coast USA, Kournikova early in the new millenium was approaching A-list celebrity status usually reserved for pop musicians and actors/actresses, while the most famous tennis players in the US Sharapova and the Williams Sisters(just so that it doesn't look like I'm just hating on Sharapova) are D-list at best. Maybe as tennis fans we have a distorted view on how the average joe sees the players we discuss 24/7 on these boards.

I do agree that Sharapova has probably made herself a bigger BRAND than Kournikova. She's a better businesswoman and makes far more money off of her name, but in terms of popularity in the western world it literally isn't even close.

This. I mean to me, a massive tennis fan, Maria and serena are a'list. But to my friends and family, their barely on their radar. Kournikova, deserved or not, was part of popular culture. I mean girl had her own E true Hollywood story...

Exordes
Jan 5th, 2013, 04:42 PM
Even poker players know who is Anna Kournikova:
The pocket cards A-K, either suited or offsuit.
Nickname originates partly from the former tennis pro's initials, A.K. In addition to playing on Kournikova's initials, the hand nickname also has roots in an analogy between the pro and the hand: They are both said to "look better than they play."
Synonym: Big Slick

$uricate
Jan 5th, 2013, 04:43 PM
Right now? Yes. At their primes, not even close, when Anna was playing, she was saturated in the media, absolutely everywhere, it was insane, Martha is not anywhere near what that was when Anna was playing.

Yes. Anna supposedly getting engaged to a random hockey player was featured on the front page of a UK tabloid :lol:

cn ireland
Jan 5th, 2013, 04:44 PM
Kournikova was more popular but Sharapova was more respected.

Laura_VeeFan
Jan 5th, 2013, 08:31 PM
Most people know who Anna Kournikova is. You can't say that about Maria.

EDIT: no tennis players are currently A-list like she was. Not even Serena, Venus and Maria.

Sammo
Jan 5th, 2013, 08:33 PM
Everyone in my country knows that Sharapova is a tall blond tennis player that screams a lot and is hot. But Kournikova is also known everywhere here, but because she's been Enrique Iglesias' girlfriend for over a decade, that's the main reason.

Start da Game
Jan 5th, 2013, 08:47 PM
kournikova's peak was just at a different level altogether......i remember as a kid she sent serious heat waves across the youths in many countries.......

sharapova is just a flashy doll who merely benefited from the much advanced media and promoters.......

ITF strategies changed in and around 2000......they took major steps like surface homogenization, racket contracts, additional media campaigns etc. in order to mold the sport of tennis into a stars-centric one.......by 2002 and 2003, gone were the days when the sport used to be diverse.......that approach was no longer profitable to them......so these new "stars" followed.......the same happened with men's tennis......

in an era which was not really suitable for excessive stardom and with relatively far little media coverage and promotional campaigns, kournikova was clearly ahead of her time......

doomsday
Jan 5th, 2013, 09:12 PM
People are still fighting over this.:help:

Give that title to Kournikova, she never won anything.

antonella
Jan 5th, 2013, 09:15 PM
...1997 was back in the days when only a minority used the interview so the national newspapers, in particular, the Sun, was the nation's way of tracking news and sport on a daily basis, and for that fortnight, Kournikova was on the front page pretty much every day

I remember one year, AK withdrew from Wimbeldon due to an injury and even before the event started, one of those Brit tabloids headline was : TOURNAMENT'S OVER!!!. Don't see that happening with Sharpie.

debby
Jan 5th, 2013, 09:16 PM
kournikova's peak was just at a different level altogether......i remember as a kid she sent serious heat waves across the youths in many countries.......

sharapova is just a flashy doll who merely benefited from the much advanced media and promoters.......

ITF strategies changed in and around 2000......they took major steps like surface homogenization, racket contracts, additional media campaigns etc. in order to mold the sport of tennis into a stars-centric one.......by 2002 and 2003, gone were the days when the sport used to be diverse.......that approach was no longer profitable to them......so these new "stars" followed.......the same happened with men's tennis......

in an era which was not really suitable for excessive stardom and with relatively far little media coverage and promotional campaigns, kournikova was clearly ahead of her time......

so are you acknowledging it benefited Rafa ?

moby
Jan 5th, 2013, 09:25 PM
As everyone said, Kournikova transcended tennis. In fact, most people (outside of tennis) thought she was a terrible tennis player who not only looked good, but looked good playing tennis.

She had a flashy, smooth, beautiful all-around game to match her looks, even if that game often leaked too many errors for her to win the big ones.

She also started that whole "Russian girls can't serve" thing, which makes her still relevant in tennis. :tape:

Sharapova isn't known so much for her looks rather than for her image (of which her looks are part of) as a fierce intense competitor who wins. She would be another Hantuchova, or even Ivanovic, without her success on the tennis courts.

JamieOwen3
Jan 5th, 2013, 09:32 PM
OK I've thought about this again.

During Anna's time there weren't many beautiful players *Sabatini retired in 96* and she came around just at the right time, plus she could actually play *contrary to what some people say* these days there are plenty of great looking players who get noticed. Anna was the only one around her time so she got all the attention. I doubt a stunning player would get that much ever again before they win a big tournament anyway.

Sammo
Jan 5th, 2013, 09:34 PM
I remember one year, AK withdrew from Wimbeldon due to an injury and even before the event started, one of those Brit tabloids headline was : TOURNAMENT'S OVER!!!. Don't see that happening with Sharpie.

OMG that's incredible :lol:

GoofyDuck
Jan 5th, 2013, 09:37 PM
Anna :hearts:

Novichok
Jan 5th, 2013, 09:38 PM
Are you guys serious?? Sharapova is 1000x more popular and famous than Anna Kournikova was/is. People who don't even watch tennis can pick Maria Sharapova out on the street, shes's been all over tv marketing different products so I think her brand is way larger. Its kinda hard not to say Maria considering shes won a title before not to mention 4 Grand Slam singles.

No they can't.

égalité
Jan 5th, 2013, 09:41 PM
Kournikova was a superstar. Sharapova is a niche superstar. :lol:

saint2
Jan 5th, 2013, 10:15 PM
OK I've thought about this again.

During Anna's time there weren't many beautiful players *Sabatini retired in 96* and she came around just at the right time, plus she could actually play *contrary to what some people say* these days there are plenty of great looking players who get noticed. Anna was the only one around her time so she got all the attention. I doubt a stunning player would get that much ever again before they win a big tournament anyway.

Barbara Schett was way hotter than Kournikova :hearts::hearts:
Shes still hot at her late 30s...:drool:
And she came to Poland to play MM (or was it ITF...don't remember) when Poland was tennis shithole.

denny5576
Jan 5th, 2013, 10:18 PM
O My! How many people here are far away from the reality...

dsanders06
Jan 5th, 2013, 10:42 PM
I highly doubt Sharapova will be anything of note after tennis. On a scale of hotness she is decent but was never in kournikova's league of hotness (anyone who had one of anna's official calenders usually had the pages all stuck together by Jan 2nd). Sharapova's main selling point is she is the prettiest of the current tennis champions. If she was ranked 12 and average or not playing she would basically be a 2nd rate kirilenko popularity wise.

Sharapova's main selling point has always been being a winner and as soon as that stops she will be pretty much irrelevant. She would have never been a blip on the radar had she had kournikova's career, which tells you how popular Anna really was and how beautiful that she was, as sh was basically seen as average (unfairly) on court, but it didn't matter as she had the face and body of every boy's wet dream.

God, you're making me bring out the demonic stan :lol: Maria WAS ranked 12 and below for two years, and was still raking in sponsorships and used to promote all the tournaments.

Also, even as someone who voted Kournikova, people in this thread are overdoing it :lol: In Britain atleast, the average person would be able to identify Maria, and they'd be able to identify both Serena and Venus as "one of the Williams sisters" (even if they'd struggle to distinguish between them). People are making the assumption that just because a small proportion of people watch tennis these days, that that would mean they wouldn't even have been exposed even briefly to the sport's stars. I mean I don't recall ever watching golf out of choice, but I would still be able to easily recognise McIlroy, Woods and even Luke Donald, and I'm pretty sure there's many others here who are the same.

Though, with that said, none of today's stars can match the level of recognition that Navratilova, Evert, Graf and Seles all had in their heydays.

HRHoliviasmith
Jan 6th, 2013, 05:16 AM
People are still fighting over this.:help:

Give that title to Kournikova, she never won anything.

:lol: a mess.

Stonerpova
Jan 6th, 2013, 05:22 AM
:lol: a mess.

Come on girl it was funny :haha:

Craig.
Jan 6th, 2013, 05:25 AM
Come on girl it was funny :haha:

Such a doomsday thing to say :crying2:

HRHoliviasmith
Jan 6th, 2013, 05:54 AM
Come on girl it was funny :haha:

it is. i was calling doomsday a mess.

Such a doomsday thing to say :crying2:

this. :lol:

Stamp Paid
Jan 6th, 2013, 10:37 AM
Kournikova is the most beautiful woman to ever play professional tennis. She wins this, obviously :lol:

debby
Jan 6th, 2013, 10:38 AM
Kournikova is the most beautiful woman to ever play professional tennis. She wins this, obviously :lol:

OMG !!!! #ENDOFTHEWORLD
Lbv endorsing some spoiled white trash beauty :speakles: :rolls:

Stamp Paid
Jan 6th, 2013, 10:43 AM
OMG !!!! #ENDOFTHEWORLD
Lbv endorsing some spoiled white trash beauty :speakles: :rolls:She was not trash. Being in Bradenton didn't spoil her, like it did some others :lol:

debby
Jan 6th, 2013, 10:46 AM
She was not trash. Being in Bradenton didn't spoil her, like it did some others :lol:

:lol: between Kournikova and Serena, who wins? :angel: :lol:

doomsday
Jan 6th, 2013, 10:47 AM
She was not trash. Being in Bradenton didn't spoil her, like it did some others :lol:

Say what you want about Maria but she always played with panties unlike Anna.:lol:

Stamp Paid
Jan 6th, 2013, 10:49 AM
:lol: between Kournikova and Serena, who wins? :angel: :lol:Peak Serena vs Peak Kournikova, or everyday Serena vs everyday Kournikova?

Stamp Paid
Jan 6th, 2013, 10:52 AM
Say what you want about Maria but she always played with panties unlike Anna.:lol:The street committee told me that apparently, Serena is your ultimate 2nd fave. :eek: Why is that? Racial pride and solidarity? :lol:

debby
Jan 6th, 2013, 10:58 AM
Say what you want about Maria but she always played with panties unlike Anna.:lol:


Wait, what, did Anna ever play without panties?!? :lol: I am sure you liked it :lol:


Peak Serena vs Peak Kournikova, or everyday Serena vs everyday Kournikova?


In terms of looks? Well why not, is there any pics of Peak Serena? :lol:




The street committee told me that apparently, Serena is your ultimate 2nd fave. :eek: Why is that? Racial pride and solidarity? :lol:

I can't :sobbing: you won't let that go, will you? :lol:

Stamp Paid
Jan 6th, 2013, 11:02 AM
Wait, what, did Anna ever play without panties?!? :lol: I am sure you liked it :lol:





In terms of looks? Well why not, is there any pics of Peak Serena? :lol:






I can't :sobbing: you won't let that go, will you? :lol:IMO, Peak Serena > Peak Kournikova. I consider them both at their peaks when they were 20. Peak Serena was a stunning Amazon goddess, Peak Kournikova was just a very beautiful woman.

Sammo
Jan 6th, 2013, 11:06 AM
IMO, Peak Serena > Peak Kournikova. I consider them both at their peaks when they were 20. Peak Serena was a stunning Amazon goddess, Peak Kournikova was just a very beautiful woman.

:spit:

Stamp Paid
Jan 6th, 2013, 11:09 AM
:spit:
Its just my opinion, Sammo.
In the real world with regular people, its actually okay if people have different opinions. Just an FYI in case you make it out one day. :lol:

Alejandrawrrr
Jan 6th, 2013, 11:12 AM
Its just my opinion, Sammo.
In the real world with regular people, its actually okay if people have different opinions. Just an FYI in case you make it out one day. :lol:

I mean really :lol: Some people on this board are shell-shocked when they find out not everyone subscribes to the western/eurocentric idea of female beauty.

Sam L
Jan 6th, 2013, 11:14 AM
IMO, Peak Serena > Peak Kournikova. I consider them both at their peaks when they were 20. Peak Serena was a stunning Amazon goddess, Peak Kournikova was just a very beautiful woman.

I agree except I never thought Kournikova was beautiful at all. I just didn't get the hype. Her facial features are so plain and so boring. Sharapova was quite ugly as a teenager. She looks OK now. I think Serena's more beautiful than either.

The most beautiful Russian is probably Lenochka but I didn't really like her.

Stamp Paid
Jan 6th, 2013, 11:20 AM
I mean really :lol: Some people on this board are shell-shocked when they find out not everyone subscribes to the western/eurocentric idea of female beauty.Ikr. But let me stop, before they start the PMs about how I'm a racist because I think my black women are particularly beautiful. :lol:

I agree except I never thought Kournikova was beautiful at all. I just didn't get the hype. Her facial features are so plain and so boring. Sharapova was quite ugly as a teenager. She looks OK now. I think Serena's more beautiful than either.

The most beautiful Russian is probably Lenochka but I didn't really like her.Really? I thought she was gorgeous, something about her facial proportions once she became a woman. I thought she was just a cute girl until she was 20/21/22. Pova gets prettier as she gets older as well, but I hope she takes care of her skin so she doesn't look like Chris Evert at 30.

Sammo
Jan 6th, 2013, 11:23 AM
Ikr. But let me stop, before they start the PMs about how I'm a racist because I think my black women are particularly beautiful. :lol:


Who could care to do that?

*Jool*
Jan 6th, 2013, 11:25 AM
well... honestly, I don't think the hype WTA got when Anna K started playing tennis and the new glamour-ditacted era they entered , can ever be challenged , even by Sharapova ..

Stamp Paid
Jan 6th, 2013, 11:25 AM
Who could care to do that?Some people take this stuff seriously like that, bb :lol:

doomsday
Jan 6th, 2013, 11:28 AM
The street committee told me that apparently, Serena is your ultimate 2nd fave. :eek: Why is that? Racial pride and solidarity? :lol:

:lol::lol: Debby is so gonna pay for that :lol:

And I can't express my feelings towards Serena, if only she and her fans could go easy on Maria sometimes it would help.

thegreendestiny
Jan 6th, 2013, 11:33 AM
Wow. Kournikova is actually winning something. :oh:

debby
Jan 6th, 2013, 11:39 AM
:lol::lol: Debby is so gonna pay for that :lol:

And I can't express my feelings towards Serena, if only she and her fans could go easy on Maria sometimes it would help.

Gurl you are already a Serena fan, look at that threat :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Start da Game
Jan 6th, 2013, 05:42 PM
so are you acknowledging it benefited Rafa ?

yes.....nadal, federer and djokovic all benefited from it......career grandslams wouldn't have happened otherwise......federer is the biggest beneficiary.......

i have no doubt that kournikova would have won a slam or two minimum in this generation......she just couldn't take the amount of diversity and instead started focusing on fashion......

p.s. nadal is the only one in the history of men's tennis with at least two grandslams on each surface - clay, grass and hardcourts......so that somehow makes me believe that he could have possible won at least one slam on all three surfaces in the 90s......no chance for federer or djokovic.......

tonybotz
Jan 6th, 2013, 06:31 PM
Kournikova by far. She was actually sexy. Every guy i knew wanted to bang her. Sharapova is more for gays. She has model looks, meaning she only looks good in tons of make up and photographed well. Anna K. was just a natural sex-appeal machine.

See the throngs of boys and men at Anna's practices and matches for proof.

Not even close on this one.

TheGoldenChild
Jan 6th, 2013, 06:36 PM
Gurl you are already a Serena fan, look at that threat :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

DO YOU know that Maria find Anna more hotter than her? YEAH REALLY....OH hold on, I think that's she find Ana more hotter...or maybe it's Ana who find ANNA more hotter? :confused: NO.....I Remember now:D it's Ana who finds ANNA more hotter than ANNA(THE other ANNA , not the ANNA we mean) :confused:

Novichok
Jan 6th, 2013, 06:40 PM
Sharapova's beauty in her prime >>>>>>> Kournikova's beauty in her prime.

debby
Jan 6th, 2013, 06:41 PM
DO YOU know that Maria find Anna more hotter than her? YEAH REALLY....OH hold on, I think that's she find Ana more hotter...or maybe it's Ana who find ANNA more hotter? :confused: NO.....I Remember now:D it's Ana who finds ANNA more hotter than ANNA(THE other ANNA , not the ANNA we mean) :confused:

why did you quote me :confused:

TheGoldenChild
Jan 6th, 2013, 06:43 PM
why did you quote me :confused:
Aren't you Debby Dingle? :confused:

She told me she be here at 19:40 tonight

debby
Jan 6th, 2013, 06:51 PM
Aren't you Debby Dingle? :confused:

She told me she be here at 19:40 tonight

OMG

faboozadoo15
Jan 6th, 2013, 10:19 PM
y.;22692084']Natasha Zvereva.

:lol: Ok, well Natasha made it to #5, won 4 titles, a major final in singles. She also won 18 doubles slams to Anna's 2.

mauresmofan
Jan 6th, 2013, 11:22 PM
Anna by miles. There is something about Sharapova that is very difficult to warm to. Anna on the other hand was loved regardless of her attitude. The French Crowd is always the litmus test and Anna acted like a brat against Novotna in 98 looking to delay the match when it was getting dark so she could play the following day as Novotna at that moment had the momentum and when leaving the court a while later Novotna was the one who was roundly booed whereas Sharapova argues a little and gets booed big time by the French crowd. I'm not saying the French crowd is the be all and end all of judging but if you can win over the harshest GS crowd in the world then that's a very good indicator of your popularity.

Stonerpova
Jan 6th, 2013, 11:25 PM
Anna by miles. There is something about Sharapova that is very difficult to warm to. Anna on the other hand was loved regardless of her attitude. The French Crowd is always the litmus test and Anna acted like a brat against Novotna in 98 looking to delay the match when it was getting dark so she could play the following day as Novotna at that moment had the momentum and when leaving the court a while later Novotna was the one who was roundly booed whereas Sharapova argues a little and gets booed big time by the French crowd. I'm not saying the French crowd is the be all and end all of judging but if you can win over the harshest GS crowd in the world then that's a very good indicator of your popularity.

That's exactly what you're saying :lol:

carling
Jan 7th, 2013, 12:53 AM
Anna without question.

Libertango
Jan 7th, 2013, 08:42 AM
The hype and buzz around Anna was HUGE. I've never felt quite the same excitement over Maria, even though she's been far more successful on court. Just my interpretation of it.