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Paris Masters 2015

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Post by Born Slippy Sun 01 Nov 2015, 5:45 pm

First topic message reminder :

Last Masters of the year with Novak winning 5 so far, Murray 2 and Fed 1. Will Paris return to its previous status as the "underdog" Masters or will 2013/14 champ Djokovic reign supreme again?

The draw is out:

http://www.atpworldtour.com/en/scores/current/paris/352/draws

Potential last 16:

Djokovic v Simon
Tsonga v Berdych
Wawrinka v Lopez
Anderson v Nadal
Ferrer v Cilic
Isner v Federer
Gasquet v Nishikori
Goffin v Murray

Big 5 starters:

Djokovic : Gabashvili or Bellucci
Wawrinka: Tomic or Fognini (ouch!)
Nadal: Rosol(!) or GGL
Federer: Seppi or Cuevas
Murray: Coric or Verdasco

R1 To Watch

Tomic v Fognini
Paire v Monfils
Vesely v Dolgopolov

Predictions

Q1: Djokovic - best player in the world by a distance. Monfils in his 2nd match could be tricky but should reach the QF with ease. Dismantled Tsonga with ease in Shanghai and always crushes Berdych. Should cruise to the SF.

Q2: Nadal - could well face Rosol again but have to feel he should handle him better with the confidence gained this week. Think he will have too much for Wawrinka in a potential QF.

Q3: Federer - great draw for Roger. Won't enjoy playing Isner but should get through. Only possible danger is Cilic and I doubt he will get past Ferrer. Federer v Ferrer the easiest call in tennis.

Q4: Murray - assuming he has some focus this week - and the number 2 ranking should mean that he does - should reach the QF easily. Given Kei's questionable current fitness have to pick him to also reach the SF.

Not picking beyond that until I have seen the relative form!

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Post by ShankyCricket Sun 08 Nov 2015, 4:21 pm

6-2, 6-4. This was Nole's most comfortable win of the tournament by a long distance. Even Bellucci and Simon in the first 2 rounds took 8 games each off him. Berdych didn't lose his serve and was beaten in two close tie breaks. Stan took a set off him. And in the final..... BOOM! This when Andy had lost a total of 4 games across his first 2 games (1/4th of what Novak had lost) and only 7 games in the semi final (fewer than what Nole lost in the first 2 rounds - 8 each). There is very little doubt as to who was the form player in this tournament going into the final. Pretty damning for Andy if he can't even compete with Nole after their respective performances in the lead up to the final. If not now, when? Montreal final looks like an accident with every passing day. He has now lost 10 of his last 11 matches against Novak since the 2013 Wimbledon final. This is going a bit like the Serena-Sharapova rivalry post the 2004 Wimbledon final.

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Post by Jahu Sun 08 Nov 2015, 4:21 pm

HMM, congrats buddy to you, and to my other far away buddy, socal Hug
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Post by summerblues Sun 08 Nov 2015, 4:21 pm

HM Murdock wrote:Whatever happens in London, I now consider this season the equal of Fed's 2006 in terms of results.

If he wins London, I'd rate it a fraction higher.
If he wins London - especially if he wins without losing any matches there - I agree. But if he does not, then to me his season would be a fraction below Fed's 2006.

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Post by Guest Sun 08 Nov 2015, 4:24 pm

Djokouarry becoming like Fedal, only one horse in it.

Looking at the season, I keep asking myself with the season that is Djokovic, does the titles reflect the quality of play? chin

Not sure how long it will take me to appreciate Djokovic. Just don't know what it is.

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Post by temporary21 Sun 08 Nov 2015, 4:25 pm

summerblues wrote:
temporary21 wrote:The two best players today at doing that, the Swiss twins, have had about the same luck as he has, one or two wins, but pummeled into oblivion when it matters...
I wonder if Stan - or Novak, for that matter - would agree.
point taken... I kinda forgot about RG for some reason...
Stan arguably as had the best success I suppose. Thn again Muzz took him to five the match before, so its not like hes doing noticeable worse than the other guys

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Post by HM Murdock Sun 08 Nov 2015, 4:25 pm

Aut0Gr4ph wrote:With Novak's brilliance on return often grabbing the headlines, one development that's easy to overlook is the improvement on serve. Novak has always put Andy's serve under pressure, but, in the past, I think Andy was usually pretty confident he could return the favour. Novak's serve has become a real weapon, while, if anything, Andy's serve has gone backwards a bit. Taken together that really tips the balance to Novak.
I'd say the serve is the single biggest improvement of the year.

When you see the graphics of the spots Novak is hitting, you see how much variety he is using.

The second serve in particular has improved enormously. He has the highest second serve conversion rate on tour in 2015: 60%. Federer, Isner and Raonic on 58%.

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Post by temporary21 Sun 08 Nov 2015, 4:28 pm

Beauty comes in many forms, Feds a landscape painting, Novaks the clockwork in a watch. Novaks quaity of play has been amazing, as good as Fed in his prime to me. If your not a fan of his style though you might not see it

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 08 Nov 2015, 4:28 pm

ShankyCricket wrote:Djoker has played average tennis throughout this tournament tbh. The match against Berdych was apparently the first time he won in his career without breaking his opponent's serve and he dropped a set to Big Stan (his first since the US final and only the 2nd since the Cincinnati final!!!!). Murray OTOH was in ominous form throughout the tournament yet is getting ripped apart by Nole here. Murray has had a very consistent year but I'm amused by people calling it his best ever. Of course, its a vast improvement on the disastrous 2014 but to me, he is playing like he was pre 2012 (except for the improved clay game). Good enough to consistently beat guys ranked below him, good enough to consistently make semis and finals but considerably short of the class to beat the best. Djokovic and a 34 year old Federer (against whom he actually had a favourable H2H record pre 2014) have wiped the floor with him this year. Expect a resurgent Nadal to get the better of him next year too. He just hasn't been the same player under pressure since Lendl left. The epic choke in this year's Australia Open final a good case in point

What you need to understand is the enormousity of Federer, Nadal and Djokovic who Murray has often pitted against in the business ends of tournaments. Those three have and continue to set records and will retire as all-time greats of the sport - better than your Edbergs, Agassi's, Beckers and Lendls who were the all-time greats of bygone ages. That is what Murray is up against and for him to have reached so many slam finals, won two slams, an Olympic Gold, a Davis Cup Finalist and has a few impressive stats and records himself then I'd say it puts into context that he is a mighty fine player.
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Post by HM Murdock Sun 08 Nov 2015, 4:31 pm

summerblues wrote:
HM Murdock wrote:Whatever happens in London, I now consider this season the equal of Fed's 2006 in terms of results.

If he wins London, I'd rate it a fraction higher.
If he wins London - especially if he wins without losing any matches there - I agree.  But if he does not, then to me his season would be a fraction below Fed's 2006.
Not much in it either way. It comes down to whether one rates the better W/L and a WTF title as more important than 6 Masters v 4 Masters.

If it were say 5 Masters v 4, I'd give Fed's 06 the edge.

But as 6 Masters is a record, I'm more inclined to call it a tie.

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Post by ShankyCricket Sun 08 Nov 2015, 4:32 pm

Indeed! But he is nowhere near the league of the Big 3 which is why the Big 4 references amuse me.

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Post by summerblues Sun 08 Nov 2015, 4:38 pm

temporary21 wrote:Stan arguably as had the best success I suppose. Thn again Muzz took him to five the match before, so its not like hes doing noticeable worse than the other guys
Stan usually gets pummeled when it does not matter but their recent slam matches (and not only RG this year) show that he has clearly managed to find a way to make Nole's life uncomfortable - perhaps more so than anyone else recently.

Fed gets beaten in slams but in general is able to also make Nole somewhat uncomfortable.  Last year he was the only guy winning multiple matches against Nole, and he is again so far this year.  His record the last two years against Nole is 5-6.  Not too bad at all, given where their respective careers are.

Andy has been getting worse results for some reason.  Maybe part of the problem is that his game is too similar to Nole's.  Fed and Stan can bring something different to the table - not usually good enough to win but enough to stir things up.  Andy's overall level may be no worse - or even better - than those two, but his game is kind of similar to Nole's - just a bit worse in most respects.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 08 Nov 2015, 4:57 pm

ShankyCricket wrote:Indeed! But he is nowhere near the league of the Big 3 which is why the Big 4 references amuse me.

The big four term comes from the fact that they very often made the slam semis often in back-to-back slams or more - and yes Murray did win some of those semis as well so to try to disqualify him from the group seems a bit mean to me. Also he has had more wins against Federer and Djokovic than others in this era hence another reason he gets put in the category of big four along with his longevity of being ranked in the top four (aside from his spell with a back injury).
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Post by temporary21 Sun 08 Nov 2015, 5:38 pm

The big 4 by definition looks to stand those 4 out from the rest of the pack. Hes not as good as the other 3 but clearly miles better than the rest. Hence the big 4 is a perfectly good moniker

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Post by Born Slippy Sun 08 Nov 2015, 5:46 pm

temporary21 wrote:I would suggest lf for your health, you stop pinning your hopes on Murray being able to blast through Novaks defenses with winner after winner, thats never how hes done it.

The two best players today at doing that, the Swiss twins, have had about the same luck as he has, one or two wins, but pummeled into oblivion when it matters...

Instead of us getting angry that Murray isnt playing as good as Novak, maybe just accept that he isnt nearly a good as Novak, hence why his best cant come out...

What can he do about that? Shore up the second serve, probably change up to some rope a dope tactics instead, almost certainly still wont work...

He needs to play like he did for 2 sets in Oz, 2 more sets in Miami, 2 more at RG and all three in Canada. High quality tennis using his greater power to unsettle Novak. It isn't always going to work but it gives him a shot. All of that should be well within his abilities - but he hasn't produced it at all in the last two Nolandy matches, despite being in sensational form going into the Shanghai match in particular.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 08 Nov 2015, 5:48 pm

temporary21 wrote:The big 4 by definition looks to stand those 4 out from the rest of the pack. Hes not as good as the other 3 but clearly miles better than the rest. Hence the big 4 is a perfectly good moniker

Precisely.

By no means is it a disgrace to not be in the same class as Djokovic, Federer and Nadal. After all you will struggle to name five players in the history of tennis that can lay claim to being that.
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Post by laverfan Sun 08 Nov 2015, 6:08 pm

Born Slippy wrote:
He needs to play like he did for 2 sets in Oz, 2 more sets in Miami, 2 more at RG and all three in Canada. High quality tennis using his greater power to unsettle Novak. It isn't always going to work but it gives him a shot. All of that should be well within his abilities - but he hasn't produced it at all in the last two Nolandy matches, despite being in sensational form going into the Shanghai match in particular.  

He has not produced it in the last 10 matches. He will do it in patches, which to me is the mystery. If he wants to be the perennial Ferrer, that is fine.


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Post by laverfan Sun 08 Nov 2015, 6:10 pm

ShankyCricket wrote:Indeed! But he is nowhere near the league of the Big 3 which is why the Big 4 references amuse me.

He is very capable, but his demons get the better of him. Crying or Very sad

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 08 Nov 2015, 6:15 pm

laverfan wrote:
Born Slippy wrote:
He needs to play like he did for 2 sets in Oz, 2 more sets in Miami, 2 more at RG and all three in Canada. High quality tennis using his greater power to unsettle Novak. It isn't always going to work but it gives him a shot. All of that should be well within his abilities - but he hasn't produced it at all in the last two Nolandy matches, despite being in sensational form going into the Shanghai match in particular.  

He has not produced it in the last 10 matches. He will do it in patches, which to me is the mystery. If he wants to be the perennial Ferrer, that is fine.


Like I said earlier - and am surprised others can't see this - Andy is a mental player. When mentally tuned in and confident he has the game to beat anyone. However, Murray has gone through long lean spells in matches against Federer and Djokovic of late and (like his long run of slam final losses) they must weigh heavily on his mind. Getting out of that trough was not easy for him iin slam finals and likewise in these runs here against Fed and Djoko. I think I have said it before here - Murray when not 100% mentally all there for a match (confidence and self-belief wise) is not going to win these big matches whereas Fed and Djoko can. I would say that goes some way to explaining his paltry total of two slam wins thus far.
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Post by temporary21 Sun 08 Nov 2015, 6:21 pm

To label him the perennial ferrer I couldn't think if a more backhanded insult to him. He far exceeds ferrer, he's juzt not as good as novak

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Post by sirfredperry Sun 08 Nov 2015, 6:26 pm

Re where this stands in terms of an outstanding season - I still don't think this quite equals Djoko's 2011.
Four years ago Djoko had to contend with - and generally beat - a Rafa at the height of his powers. Fed, of course, was four years younger and then there was Murray to contend with.
For Djoko to win the first 43 matches of the season in 2011 was quite incredible. This year, there's hardly been a time when anyone has been able to give him a half-decent match. Fed, Murray and Stan have done it but he's just been out there on his own with no real rival.
I know you can only beat what's in front of you, but what Nole had in front of him in 2011 was, IMHO, a lot more challenging than the class of 2015.

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Post by summerblues Sun 08 Nov 2015, 6:34 pm

If you have a player who is clearly behind the three ahead of him and clearly ahead of everyone else, is it a "Big 4" or a "Big 3"?  Strikes me as rather arbitrary.

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Post by HM Murdock Sun 08 Nov 2015, 6:41 pm

sirfredperry wrote:Re where this stands in terms of an outstanding season - I still don't think this quite equals Djoko's 2011.
  Four years ago Djoko had to contend with - and generally beat - a Rafa at the height of his powers. Fed, of course, was four years younger and then there was Murray to contend with.
  For Djoko to win the first 43 matches of the season in 2011 was quite incredible. This year, there's hardly been a time when anyone has been able to give him a half-decent match. Fed, Murray and Stan have done it but he's just been out there on his own with no real rival.
  I know you can only beat what's in front of you, but what Nole had in front of him in 2011 was, IMHO, a lot more challenging than the class of 2015.
The comparison with 2011 is an interesting one.

I agree with you about the level of the opposition.

I also think 2011 was more exciting, partly from its unexpected nature and partly due to the smattering of genuinely classic matches that took place in that year.

Nevertheless, I think that Novak's level is higher this year. If you go through his whole game, I think it is only the BHDTL that was better in 2011. In all other respects, I think he is superior in 2015, sometimes markedly so.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 08 Nov 2015, 6:41 pm

summerblues wrote:If you have a player who is clearly behind the three ahead of him and clearly ahead of everyone else, is it a "Big 4" or a "Big 3"?  Strikes me as rather arbitrary.

Lets not forget the term remained in place when Federer had a poor run of form in 2013 (was it?) with no slam wins and Nadal lately has had a stinking run of form with no slam wins so you see it wasn't put in place just to appease Murray. It was there because these four have contested the latter stages of the major tournaments almost exclusively for the last five or six years.
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Post by Guest Sun 08 Nov 2015, 6:43 pm

laverfan wrote:
Born Slippy wrote:
He needs to play like he did for 2 sets in Oz, 2 more sets in Miami, 2 more at RG and all three in Canada. High quality tennis using his greater power to unsettle Novak. It isn't always going to work but it gives him a shot. All of that should be well within his abilities - but he hasn't produced it at all in the last two Nolandy matches, despite being in sensational form going into the Shanghai match in particular.  

He has not produced it in the last 10 matches. He will do it in patches, which to me is the mystery. If he wants to be the perennial Ferrer, that is fine.


Hug

It's not a mystery as such. He is having the same problems with Djokovic as he did with Nadal early in his career. Facing a wall of a player on the baseline who he will not outlast in a rally. Has to go for more aggressive shots which is so far out his comfort zone. 

It's a sad reflection I know. I just hope Bjorkman can bring out some aggression in a more sustained burst.

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Post by summerblues Sun 08 Nov 2015, 6:54 pm

CaledonianCraig wrote:
summerblues wrote:If you have a player who is clearly behind the three ahead of him and clearly ahead of everyone else, is it a "Big 4" or a "Big 3"?  Strikes me as rather arbitrary.

Lets not forget the term remained in place when Federer had a poor run of form in 2013 (was it?) with no slam wins and Nadal lately has had a stinking run of form with no slam wins
I do not understand what point you are trying to make.

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Post by summerblues Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:00 pm

sirfredperry wrote:Re where this stands in terms of an outstanding season - I still don't think this quite equals Djoko's 2011.
That is not how I see it.  To me, what Nole did in the first half of 2011 - and to a lesser extent all the way through the USO 2011 - was more spectacular than anything he did this year.  But in terms of the season overall, I would say 2015 is better.  The end of the season in 2011 was too weak to make it better overall than 2015.  Of course, if he now fails to get out of his group in London, it will bring 2011 season comparison back in play Smile

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Post by Guest Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:02 pm

summerblues wrote:
CaledonianCraig wrote:
summerblues wrote:If you have a player who is clearly behind the three ahead of him and clearly ahead of everyone else, is it a "Big 4" or a "Big 3"?  Strikes me as rather arbitrary.

Lets not forget the term remained in place when Federer had a poor run of form in 2013 (was it?) with no slam wins and Nadal lately has had a stinking run of form with no slam wins
I do not understand what point you are trying to make.

That the big 4's achievements only relate to what they won in its conception Wink

So 17 and counting doesn't count Very Happy

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:04 pm

summerblues wrote:
CaledonianCraig wrote:
summerblues wrote:If you have a player who is clearly behind the three ahead of him and clearly ahead of everyone else, is it a "Big 4" or a "Big 3"?  Strikes me as rather arbitrary.

Lets not forget the term remained in place when Federer had a poor run of form in 2013 (was it?) with no slam wins and Nadal lately has had a stinking run of form with no slam wins
I do not understand what point you are trying to make.

My point is Murray is not doing great in the big match-ups just now - it happens. He's had better spells for sure. Federer and Nadal themselves have had lean spells in the last few years but were always part of the 'big four' through that poor run of form so why should Murray be any different? Remember that Murray has virtually been a constant in the top four rankings for the last four or five years, had spells where he made all four slam semis (or better) in a calendar year and is one of only a handful of players to do that. Now the only way I see you can say disqualify him from being in a top four conversation is by going on slam wins talk but even then look at the slam runners-up accolades he has. Dispel from the top four then you struggle to categorize him as he is far above any other player around at the moment (yes Stan also has two slam wins but in other terms he falls way short of Andy's consistency in slams, Masters and title wins).
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Post by HM Murdock Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:06 pm

Murray's big problem v Novak is that he doesn't/can't bring the aspects of the game where he is superior to Novak into play.

When Fed and Stan play Novak, they pretty much play the same patterns and tactics as they do against everyone else.

Fortunately for them, Novak cannot equal them in the skills that are the foundations of their game. They are naturally more aggressive players, with Stan having greater power than Novak and Federer having greater variety. If they execute well enough, they cause Novak problems.

But Murray's relative strengths v Novak - his touch, his imagination, his game in the forecourt - do not form the basis of his normal game anymore.

His "normal" game is, without wanting to cruel, pretty much Novak-lite. It works well against nearly everyone but clearly those patterns will be less successful against Novak himself.

So, as much as we say that he needs to use more variety against Novak, it's not as simple as flipping a switch.

If Murray is to turn that match up around, I think he probably has to adjust how he plays against everyone else too.

The great unknown is that, if he changes his style in a way that creates Novak more problems, will the dynamics of the other match ups remain the same?

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Post by summerblues Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:16 pm

CaledonianCraig wrote:My point is Murray is not doing great in the big match-ups just now - it happens.
I see. But I was not talking about now - if we were talking about now Rafa would obviously not be in "Big 4".  I was more thinking career-wise.  And I think my point stands.  He is clearly better than those behind but also clearly behind to those ahead of him.

Yes, you can say "Big 4", justify it with everyone else being far behind, and you will be right.

But you can also say "Big 3", justify it with everyone else being far behind, and you will still be right.

CaledonianCraig wrote:Now the only way I see you can say disqualify him from being in a top four conversation is by going on slam wins talk
Hehe, I like your terminology. It is like saying that "the only way" you can say January is colder than July is because temperatures are lower.

On top of that, there are plenty other ways too - how about weeks at No 1?

The guy is miles behind the other three.  But yes, he is also miles ahead of everyone else.  Hence one can say either "Big 3" or "Big 4", and both sound reasonable.

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Post by summerblues Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:17 pm

HM Murdock wrote:His "normal" game is, without wanting to cruel, pretty much Novak-lite.
Exactly. Nicely put.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:20 pm

I never invented the terminology summerblues. Wink

It is up to personal preference where you place him or where he stands but as this argument has resurfaced following his defeat today it is only fair to point out he will end this year as No.2 in the world - so that throws a spanner in the works.
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Post by laverfan Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:21 pm

HM Murdock wrote:His "normal" game is, without wanting to cruel, pretty much Novak-lite.

I now have a I-want-be-Nadal-then-i-want-to-be-Djokovic player shell left, with neither looking a possibility.

At least we have an agreement, in principle.  kiss

HM Murdock wrote:So, as much as we say that he needs to use more variety against Novak, it's not as simple as flipping a switch.

If Murray is to turn that match up around, I think he probably has to adjust how he plays against everyone else too.

The great unknown is that, if he changes his style in a way that creates Novak more problems, will the dynamics of the other match ups remain the same?

There is a clear answer to this. He will win against others as well. He had a better h2h v Federer, till he went down the imitate-Nadal-Djokovic route.

PS: I am just going to walk away from this side-bar. It is not good for my blood pressure. Run All the best to Murray. rose broken


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Post by socal1976 Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:22 pm

In comparison, to 2011 this is a better level from Novak. I mean what is that 14 straight finals and he just won like 29 or 30 sets in a row against full fields in Beijing, Shanghai, and Paris. To me 2011 was great but the injury and exhaustion at the very end along with losing in the semis to Fed at RG was a huge disappoint. This year you look and only losing to Stan at RG in the final is the only dark spot.

I mean this year he has already won one more masters and played in the finals of every tournament he has entered except for one. So more masters, one more slam final, more finals this year in comparison to 2011. And in 2011 he didn't win the year end masters therefore I think this year tops 2011. If Djokovic wins the Masters cup probably the second best season in the open era. Win loss percentage doesn't decide it all in respect to the greatest season ever. I mean lets say Novak had eight or nine losses as opposed to 5 but instead had won the FO. Season's for me are measured by slam performance and major tournament wins. Novak did as well as you can do at the slams with the exception of winning all 4 of them. Then he wins the most masters ever, so if he wins the year ender as well this will be clearly better than Fed 06 Mac 84, the only other one that is close is Connors 74 and of course only bested by Laver's second slam at the start of the open era.

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Post by laverfan Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:25 pm

Federer and Nadal are also older than 2011, SoCal. Wink. Relatively better with Stan and Murray providing rear-guard, certainly. thumbsup

And it took 4 years to replicate 2011, but glad that he did make better numbers.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:26 pm

laverfan wrote:Federer and Nadal are also older than 2011, SoCal. Wink.

And Novak is far more polished than he was then I'd say.
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Post by summerblues Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:30 pm

socal1976 wrote:so if he wins the year ender as well this will be clearly better than Fed 06 Mac 84
Why clearly better than Mac's 1984?

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Post by socal1976 Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:34 pm

As for Murray I think people who doubt that he is an all time great really don't get the game. The fact is that he is just not as good as three historically greats that are better than him. Still his career places him firmly into the category of a great player when looking at the totality of circumstances; maintaining high ranking for a long time, winning masters, getting to slam finals, winning two slams. I doubt many tennis people that would not acknowledge Murray as a great player and he still isn't done yet.

But he just isn't as good as two guys who are within a year of his age. No shame because those two are pretty beyond the standard deviation amazing. There are a couple of shortcomings when comparing Novak and Andy in Novak's favor. One Novak hits heavier therefore he is more consistent in the long rallies and the weight of his shot is more likely to draw errors from Murray. Novak has the better second serve. Murray is a great returner but he just couldn't do anything on Novak's second serve. This is a huge edge for Novak. Additionally Novak goes up the line with the FH better than Murray. So for Murray to beat Novak he has to hope Novak is off his game a little and that he himself plays better than his usual game. But the same is true for Wawrinka and Federer. Wawrinka's regular level is reflected by his H2h with Novak which is worse than Murray's. But Wawrinka is a big puncher so he always has the chance of landing the big haymaker to win the match, Murray doesn't have that extra gear of power. But Stan doesn't move and doesn't return as well so these weaknesses are there to exploit. Fed is the best player but of course just older now and can't live with Novak in a neutral rally at this stage in his career so he to has to take the punchers chance against Novak. Despite winning a few matches he has lost all the big ones against Novak now for a number of years.

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Post by socal1976 Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:40 pm

summerblues wrote:
socal1976 wrote:so if he wins the year ender as well this will be clearly better than Fed 06 Mac 84
Why clearly better than Mac's 1984?

2 slam wins, one final for mac

3 slam wins, one final for Novak

Look I get Mac didn't play at the AO, but do we give him full credit of winning the AO if he had deigned to show up, Novak did win it. Plus if you want to nitpick Mac choked away 84 RG final against a player known at that time as the biggest choker in the sport. The nature of his 84 final loss to me was more devastating. He lost his cool, started doing his stick with the official and lost from 2 sets and a break up. Novak's loss to Stan came against a guy who was just hitting every single shot. I mean Wawrinka was in Yahweh mode that day pummeling every first ball right on the line. Both guys lost, but if you want to split hairs Mac got closer to winning the FO but the brutal nature of the choke to lose it left a bad taste in his own mouth more than anybody elses.

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Post by socal1976 Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:45 pm

laverfan wrote:Federer and Nadal are also older than 2011, SoCal. Wink. Relatively better with Stan and Murray providing rear-guard, certainly. thumbsup

And it took 4 years to replicate 2011, but glad that he did make better numbers.

Yeah and where was Borg and how old was Connors in 1984?

Oh by the way are we now discounting for competition level? I mean when I do it people throw fits about how there are no weak eras etc. I mean if I am going to discount any one of the all time great seasons because of competition level I'd start with Federer 06,05, and 04.

Anyway he still has to win the year ender for me to say it is the second best season of the open era.


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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 08 Nov 2015, 7:48 pm

socal1976 wrote:
laverfan wrote:Federer and Nadal are also older than 2011, SoCal. Wink. Relatively better with Stan and Murray providing rear-guard, certainly. thumbsup

And it took 4 years to replicate 2011, but glad that he did make better numbers.

Yeah and where were was Borg and how old was Connors in 1984?

Oh by the way are we now discounting for competition level? I mean when I do it people throw fits about how there are no weak eras etc. I mean if I am going to discount any one of the all time great seasons because of competition level I'd start with Federer 06,05, and 04.

Nail on the head. thumbsup
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Post by summerblues Sun 08 Nov 2015, 8:07 pm

Among the active players.

Current slam tally - best 6:
17, 14, 10, 2, 2, 1

Current weeks at No 1 - best 6 (and counting Hewitt as retired already):
302, 172, 141, 0, 0, 0

Not too hard to see why some might prefer to talk about "Big 3".  As I said, I think "Big 4" is not unreasonable either, but on the understanding that one of them is clearly the weakest link there.


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Post by summerblues Sun 08 Nov 2015, 8:11 pm

As part of this conversation, I decided to have a closer look at Andy's slam record against the Big 3 - and I only now realized how poor it really has been. I knew that his record was not great, but I was tacitly assuming it would be better than for just about anyone else. To my surprise, it is not so:

vs Big 3, in slams:

Andy: 5-18 (22% win ratio)
Stan: 4-12 (25%)
Berd: 4-10 (29%)
Tsonga: 4-10 (29%)

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 08 Nov 2015, 8:41 pm

Andy slam semis or better = 17. Titles won = 35 Wins against the top three = 27
Stan slam semis or better = 5. Titles won = 11 Wins against the top three = 10
Berdych slam semis or better = 5. Titles won = 12 Wins against the top three = 12
Tsonga slam semis or better = 6. Titles won = 12 Wins against the top three = 15
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Post by Jahu Sun 08 Nov 2015, 8:42 pm

So a week ago we watch the 2 greats fighting a great Final in Basel.

This week we see the other 2 greats, just showing up on court, with Djoko deservedly better.

Someone wake me up when Dimi or Coric wins a GS Laugh
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Post by paulcz Sun 08 Nov 2015, 9:02 pm

A lot of talks about Murray, don't be so harsh on him. Compared to Shanghai he did a fair progress in his attitude and tried to mix up his game as possible today. Despite that it  was still not enough, he deserves a credit.
I see him as the second ranked player for next year and what is more he already as a Davis cup winner.

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Post by summerblues Sun 08 Nov 2015, 9:14 pm

What are you trying to say, cc? That Andy has been a better player than Stan/Berd/Tsonga? But that is obvious, no? We all know that and nobody is disputing it.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Sun 08 Nov 2015, 9:26 pm

summerblues wrote:What are you trying to say, cc?  That Andy has been a better player than Stan/Berd/Tsonga?  But that is obvious, no?  We all know that and nobody is disputing it.

I think we are both singing from the same songsheet but looking at it from different angles.

I am saying that Murray has many impressive accomplishments in his career (even if he quit tomorrow) and don't believe I've tried saying he is at the same level as Djokovic, Federer and Nadal because he isn't consistent enough in matches against them. If he was then he would be up there with them. Andy is far above any player in the world in terms of accomplishments barring Federer, Djokovic and Nadal. Those three lest we forget would be in a lot pf people's top five players of all-time so it is no disgrace or shame that Murray can't match up to them.

People here are harsh on Murray merely (I think) because they feel he could/should have achieved even more than he has. I am not sure about that. Murray's weakness is his mentality which goes through too many peaks and troughs compared to the 'big three'. He has the game to beat them (27 times he has proved that) but that is if everything aligns for him at once such as he mentally truly believes he will and can win on that day, that he is confident enough to go for big winners and that his first serve fires. If those strengths don't come to the fore then he can't beat the big three playing 80% of his best for example.
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Post by summerblues Sun 08 Nov 2015, 9:55 pm

Yes cc, I agree, I think what we are saying is quite similar - even if we are looking at it from different angles, as you say.

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Post by summerblues Sun 08 Nov 2015, 10:00 pm

socal1976 wrote:
summerblues wrote:
socal1976 wrote:so if he wins the year ender as well this will be clearly better than Fed 06 Mac 84
Why clearly better than Mac's 1984?

2 slam wins, one final for mac

3 slam wins, one final for Novak

Look I get Mac didn't play at the AO, but do we give him full credit of winning the AO if he had deigned to show up, Novak did win it. Plus if you want to nitpick Mac choked away 84 RG final against a player known at that time as the biggest choker in the sport. The nature of his 84 final loss to me was more devastating.
I would not go into that nitpicking - once you go there you can easily end up on either side.  One could equally say that Nole's RG was worse.  For all his success this year, he arguably lost the biggest match of his season.  Whereas one would not have viewed Mac's RG final as his biggest match of 1984 - unless perhaps in hindsight.

The slam argument - 2/3 vs 3/4 - I can see as more critical, but it is difficult too - nobody was playing AO.  Even if Mac did show up and did win it, how much would it have really counted for back then?  It was a different tour, so one needs to make some adjustments to the relative weight of the tournaments - just not clear exactly what the right adjustments are.

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