Probably the most famous tennis battle of the sexes took place in 1973, between Bobby Riggs, winner of the Wimbledon men's singles title in 1939, who was aged 55 and still playing some tennis in 1973 but was well past his prime.
He defeated female player Margaret Court in a match on Mother's Day 1973, the score 6-2. Court had achieved the Grand Slam in 1970, so was at her peak.
Immediately after Bobby Riggs had beaten Margaret Court, he challenged the current women's champion Billie Jean King.
During the 1998 Australian Open, sisters Serena and Venus Williams boasted that they could beat any man ranked outside the world's top 200.
The challenge was accepted by Karsten Braasch, a German player ranked No 203 (his highest ranking was No 38).
There have been several high profile tennis matches between men and women, and despite the men generally getting the upper hand in these matches, there are some who still think that the best women in the world could be competitive against the men. Two of the greats of the 1920's are said to have played a match, with Will Tilden beating Suzanne Lenglen to love in a couple of sets.
A dominent player from the 1920s and 30s, Helen Wills Moody routinely practised against men.
Her millionaire banker fiancé popped the question last summer with a dazzling diamond ring worth an estimated £200,000.
James reportedly asked Pippa's father for permission for his daughter's hand before getting down on one knee.'James is a traditionalist and very much wanted to do things properly.
The US Open champion believed she could take on and beat the best players in the men's game - she even applied for a wild card entry to take part in a men's singles event, the Eurocard Open, but this did not eventuate, mainly because she could not compete as she was not a man.
Yannick Noah and Justine Henin played a friendly match at the Forest National in Brussels in December 2003.
That meant getting his future father in law's consent,' a friend of the couple told the Daily Mail's Richard Kay.