Serving up some style
Z ZEGNA RECENTLY ANNOUNCED ALEXANDER ZVEREV AS ITS NEWEST AMBASSADOR, AND AS YOU CAN SEE, HE’S NOT THE ONLY TENNIS PLAYER TO HAVE AN EYE FOR FASHION.
1 ENTER THE CROCODILE The OG of tennis’ fashionistas, Frenchman René Lacoste created a version of the polo shirt in 1929 that would introduce a shift in tennis clothing from impractical to functional. He would go on to launch his namesake brand Lacoste in ’33 – worn today by current world No.1, Novak Djokovic. 2 FRED PERRY JOINS THE PARTY The second style pioneer to enter the game, Perry won three Wimbledon titles from 1934-36 before turning his attention to the fashion game. Founding his label in 1952, Fred Perry and its laurel sheath (borrowed from Wimbledon’s original logo, no less) is a mainstay of any teenager’s wardrobe. 3 BORG’S HEADBAND The Swede became the first player in the modern era to win 11 Slams before retiring suddenly at 26. Though not before blessing the world with some iconic style moments – his headband as legendary as his ice-cool demeanour. In ‘84 he founded his label where, in his native Sweden, it’s the second most purchased clothing brand after Calvin Klein. 4 AGASSI BREAKS THE RULES The brash American marched to the beat of his own drum and tennis was better for it. His brightly coloured high-top Nikes inspired one of the early moments in sneaker history that is still seeing its effects on streetwear today. His desire to look fresh was so strong, in fact, he refused to play Wimbledon from 1988-91 due to its strict dress code. Now, that’s commitment. 5 THE WILLIAMS SISTERS SHAKE THINGS UP Until the late-’90s, tennis remained a stuffy, predominately white sport, governed by old, stale ideas of propriety. So, when two black sisters from Compton turned up to the French Open in ‘99 sporting coloured braids and an unapologetic will to win, the sport wasn’t entirely sure what to do. Two decades later, the pair have won 30 Slams between them and continue to rock some eyebrow-raising 'fits – cue Serena’s Off-white catsuit in 2018. 6 FEDERER’S WHITE SUIT The Swiss master, often seen as the GOAT of the men’s game, plays with such effortless style it’s only natural he takes pride in how he looks. Having won four Wimbledon championships back to back from 2003-06, he arrived on Centre Court in ’07, wearing a crisp white suit. A bold statement to make – luckily he won again, securing his fifth straight Wimbledon, beating Nadal in the final. 7 TENNIS HITS THE RUNWAY If you were in need of any more evidence that tennis is the official sport for the fashion savvy, Chanel sent a racket down the catwalk in 2008, followed by Hermès two years later. Since then, Chanel’s continued to fill its quirky line of accessories with tennis motifs, and in 2017 released a racquet you can actually play with. The price – a cool $2100. 8 ADIDAS GOES ROGUE We all know about Wimbledon’s strict dress codes. The message to players is simple – keep it classic and keep it white. Which is why heads were turned when Adidas teamed up with cult London skate brand Palace to create its collection for last year’s championship. The first collab of its kind at Wimbles and if the members’ board has any say, it will likely be the last. 9 ZVEREV THE FASHION ICON When you’re tipped to succeed Roger Federer as the sport’s most dominant force, you become a man in high demand. In 2016, the big-serving youngster was announced as a brand ambassador for the luxury Swiss watch brand Richard Mille. Now add Z Zegna to the list, officially making him the leader of the new gen – on and off the court.