Bjorn Borg (Sweden)
The first of this lot was a genial Swede named Bjorn Borg.
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As a 16-year-old, Borg beat Briton Buster Mottram 6-3, 4-6, 7-5 in the boys' singles final in 1972 to mark his arrival on Centre Court.
He made his men's singles debut a year later, with an opening round win over India's Premjit Lall. He would eventually make the quarter-finals and lose to another Briton, Roger Taylor in five sets. Three years later, he would go on to beat Romanian Ilie Nastase in straight sets for his first title.
Borg dominated Wimbledon for the next few years -- winning five titles and finishing runner's up to McEnroe in 1981 and compiling a 51-4 career singles match record.
And though Pete Sampras, and later Roger Federer, dominated at the Big W in later years, Borg's dominance outweighs them for the sheer quality of his opponents.