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1, 6–4, 4–6, 8–6 after beating Sabatini in a three-set semifinal.
Graf then lost to Navratilova 7–5, 6–3 in the Wimbledon final, her first loss of the year.
Furthermore, she is the only tennis player to have won each Grand Slam event at least four times. 1 by the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) for a record 377 total weeks—the longest period for which any player, male or female, has held the number-one ranking since the WTA and the Association of Tennis Professionals began issuing rankings.
On August 17, after defeating Evert in a straight set final in the Virginia Slims of Los Angeles, Graf overtook Navratilova for the world number one ranking for the first time in her career, a ranking she would hold for the next 186 consecutive-weeks, a record that has not been broken (although it was tied by Serena Williams in 2016, who also held the ranking for 186 consecutive weeks).
Her 22 singles titles put her second on the list of Major wins in the female competition since the introduction of the Open Era in 1968 and is third all-time behind Margaret Court (24) and Serena Williams (23).
In 1988, she became the first and only tennis player (male or female) to achieve the Golden Slam by winning all four Grand Slam singles titles and the Olympic gold medal in the same calendar year.
Social invitations on the tour were often declined as Graf's focus was kept on practicing and match play.
Working with her father and then-coach Pavel Složil, Graf typically practiced for up to four hours a day, often heading straight from airports to practice courts.