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Post by Guest82 Thu 07 Jan 2016, 4:59 pm

First topic message reminder :

Anyone keeping an eye on these?

Rafa just struggled past Kuznetsov, yet looked brilliant yesterday against Haase.

Djokovic a couple of routine wins (not seen any of it, but scorelines suggest picking up where he left off)

Kyle Edmund into quarter finals and plays Berdych later.

Bedene with a good chance of making semi in Chennai (plays quarter final against a wildcard I've never heard of (Ramanathan))

Federer routined Kamke.

Dimitrov picking up a few good wins - plays Fed next.

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Post by LuvSports! Mon 11 Jan 2016, 9:49 pm

temporary21 wrote:
legendkillarV2 wrote:Again posters are not asking for a multi slam champ to just appear out of nowhere. We just asking for promise. The fact youngsters can't make inroads at 500 level is speaking volumes. 

The game needs to act fast.
Fair enough. You wanna see breakout stars that are younger than what were getting. What do you propose though? I'm not sure what we can do, they're just not fully developed yet


A start would be bringing more variety week-week.
Fast courts. Carpet courts. Low bouncing courts. Smaller balls. Rewarding more than just one style.

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Post by Born Slippy Mon 11 Jan 2016, 9:53 pm

lags72 wrote:Don't despair bogbrush !!

Someone could break through at any time. Literally.

I mean..... we only have to look at the players who occupied the top ranking spots back in 2008, to remind ourselves just how dramatically things have changed on the men's tour over the last eight years or so.

Way back then, those spots were occupied by the likes of Djokovic Nadal, Federer, Murray and Ferrer. But then a whole host of fresh young stars* began making their mark on the scene and gradually swept aside the old guard.

Fast forward to today ....and it's a totally different world, with those spots now occupied by the likes of er....Djokovic, Nadal, Federer, Murray and Wawrinka.

*(I won't name them now because there were just so many ....would hate to leave anyone out by mistake....)

In 2008, Nadal was 22 and Murray and Novak 21. One could argue that, in fact, the problem is that they replaced the previous generation too easily. If they had popped into the top 5 in 2012 would that still be a problem?

My view is that the group of players who are now in the 28-30 region were better than the generation above them (bar Fed) and better than all the generation below. Unsurprisingly, that means that at their peak they are still going along quite nicely.

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Post by Guest Mon 11 Jan 2016, 9:57 pm

temporary21 wrote:
legendkillarV2 wrote:Again posters are not asking for a multi slam champ to just appear out of nowhere. We just asking for promise. The fact youngsters can't make inroads at 500 level is speaking volumes. 

The game needs to act fast.
Fair enough. You wanna see breakout stars that are younger than what were getting. What do you propose though? I'm not sure what we can do, they're just not fully developed yet

Court speed variation would be one thing. Tennis seems to have gone from one extreme to another. Maybe also put a limit on strong technology. Like we have seen in golf with the belly putter being banned. 

Youngsters who have shot making talent find themselves needing to be ridiculously fit to win a tournament. They can't keep up. Surfaces need to reward some form of shot making.

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Post by Born Slippy Mon 11 Jan 2016, 9:57 pm

LuvSports! wrote:
temporary21 wrote:
legendkillarV2 wrote:Again posters are not asking for a multi slam champ to just appear out of nowhere. We just asking for promise. The fact youngsters can't make inroads at 500 level is speaking volumes. 

The game needs to act fast.
Fair enough. You wanna see breakout stars that are younger than what were getting. What do you propose though? I'm not sure what we can do, they're just not fully developed yet


A start would be bringing more variety week-week.
Fast courts. Carpet courts. Low bouncing courts. Smaller balls. Rewarding more than just one style.

No, no and no. Those courts reward one style and it isn't a pleasant one to watch. The majority of current courts allow a great server (Fed) and great returners to have some even matches. We've seen at Cincy or Brisbane that the balance is way too much in favour of the better server on those courts.

The only change which would actually lead to the type of variety of tennis you seek would be cutting back the racquet technology to take any both the extra serving power/consistency that can now be achieved and the excessive topspin which can be generated by most players.

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Post by CaledonianCraig Mon 11 Jan 2016, 10:11 pm

People frustrated that youngsters cannot beat the Berdych, Ferrer's and Gasquet's of this world shouldn't lambast those players. If this period hadn't been stacked with legends like Federer, Nadal and Djokovic then they would have been slam winners I am sure.

As I said earlier go forward three years and who knows. Dimitrov and Roanic may become multiple slam winners if the current top players have begun to fade. Who knows?
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Post by Belovedluckyboy Tue 12 Jan 2016, 2:21 am

I agree with CC. Without Fed, Nadal and Djoko, Murray would win more slams, certainly more than 2. The others like Stan, Berdych who suffered the most at the hands of Djoko and Nadal, would win some(more for Stan). Maybe Ferrer could win one too, at FO2013! Murray would be the leader of the pack.

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Post by temporary21 Tue 12 Jan 2016, 2:25 pm

We are stacked with legend type players to be sure which probably is stopping any other from developing. To promote faster courts is an idea to help them offset the physical disadvantage. Problem is you have to sell them to the players and the fans. Making an existing court faster is tough because the big ones are slam warm ups and we risk the Madrid blue clay event trouble.

Getting some new fast events needs a lot of prize money and big names to make it feel important.

Another trouble is that the young guys are not actually that good on fast stuff, the best fast players are still the established legends

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Post by Guest Tue 12 Jan 2016, 2:51 pm

It's not about selling the idea to the players for me. The organisers and tours and suppliers all made changes in the hope it moved away from one/two player dominance dynasties in the hope it could stimulate more competition. It somewhat achieved that as new stars were established and grown over a period of time, yet they have hit the same outcome. Multi 1 player dynasties. You have to go back to the mid 80's/early 90's for such an equal balance of great champions who didn't quite hit the heights of 10's of Slams. There was an element of balance.

Change in sport needs to be incremental. Radicalisation will lead to disjointed and mixed results which don't necessarily provide the standard or quality those yearn for. Just randomness and chaos.

Tennis has a uniqueness. To play on 'by nature' differing surfaces. A start would be to get those surfaces playing the way they were meant to. Build around that.

Youngsters are not building upon their breakthroughs. Is that they are not good enough? Or is it that the conditions and standards not lending themselves to development of youth? chin

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Post by temporary21 Tue 12 Jan 2016, 4:29 pm

Im not sure we can do much by making the surfaces more how they used to be. The best slow court players are Murray Nadal and Novak, and the best fast surface guys are Federer and Novak.
I mean we think of Novak as a slower surface guy, but he hoovers up almost every big title on indoor and grass, which are the fastest we have.

Speed everything up, and I dont think that will take out the stranglehold the top 3 have, the youngsters just arent the freaks that they are.

We may have to accept that until at least 2 of those 3 retire, the new generation isn't getting through

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Post by Calder106 Tue 12 Jan 2016, 5:03 pm

That's more or less what I was thinking Temp. Dubai, Cincy and Basel are meant to be some of the fastest on tour. The finals of these tournaments in 2015 featured Federer in all three, Djokovic in Dubai and Cincy, Nadal in Basel. So where is the difference.

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Post by Guest Tue 12 Jan 2016, 5:10 pm

temporary21 wrote:Im not sure we can do much by making the surfaces more how they used to be. The best slow court players are Murray Nadal and Novak, and the best fast surface guys are Federer and Novak.
I mean we think of Novak as a slower surface guy, but he hoovers up almost every big title on indoor and grass, which are the fastest we have.

Speed everything up, and I dont think that will take out the stranglehold the top 3 have, the youngsters just arent the freaks that they are.

We may have to accept that until at least 2 of those 3 retire, the new generation isn't getting through

As I said 'incremental' change would be incremental. The surfaces would at least add some advantage to guys who can't hit through slower surfaces. It's a start. It won't bring about massive change, but might give assistance to the youngsters.

The wider issue is really the tennis authorities not monitoring the technological advances and ensuring it's impact isn't detrimental to the game.

There is a hell of a lot of work to be done.

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Post by temporary21 Tue 12 Jan 2016, 5:42 pm

There is actually some limitations on raquets. They have machines that test their power, with no legal raquet allowed to exceed a 100 mph ball. I guess what you suggest is a limit on topspin revs. That's a nice idea, but very hard to do anything about, as that's got a lot to do with the players action, a lot moreso than the power.



With the youngsters, im not convinced a faster surface would benefit them. a lot of them coming up are not fast court players at all.

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Post by temporary21 Tue 12 Jan 2016, 5:45 pm

Its not undoable, but its harder to measure revs than just straight up velocity. Also how many revs would be too many?

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Post by Belovedluckyboy Tue 12 Jan 2016, 5:55 pm

Murray is a good fast court player, may be better than Novak. Murray won Cincy twice, Shanghai twice, Madrid indoors once; not to mention he beat Novak twice at Cincy.

I dont think many of the young players are fast court players. I watched Coric, Dimi and Thiem played against Fed and they couldnt cope with Fed's quick attack on the HCs, they were rushed into errors. I think only Raonic and Kygrios are better on the fast courts as they can serve well on them.

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Post by socal1976 Tue 12 Jan 2016, 6:38 pm

I have to agree with BS again he is right on point. There is a reason all the tournament organizers slowed down the courts nearly a decade and half ago. The average top male pro is just going to get completely unreturnable with even a couple of minor tweeks in their favor with balls, tech, or courts. They are damn near unreturnable now holding serve more regularly than at any time in the history of the modern tour. Sometimes I don't think people understand at all what it would be playing or watching lets say Isner on serve and on the flipside on return with these faster conditions or any number of players. I am member of a pretty big club and this guy about 6'5 and young obviously a college or pro level guy of middling proportions. I watched him serve and players try to return his serve at court level and I mean all you see of the ball is a flash and then it fires off the court. I can't imagine what it would be like returning the best male players in the world with their changes. Already the best guys are holding 95 percent of the time some of them.

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Post by socal1976 Tue 12 Jan 2016, 6:42 pm

Murray in most other generations of stars we have seen would have won probably between 5-7 slams. If Murray and Federer changed places and Murray was the lone star of the weak era he would not have nearly as much success as Federer, but I can bet my bottom dollar he would have way more slams than he has now. This reflected by the number Masters he has been able to accumulate and the huge number of finals and semis he has made only to lose to FEd, Djoko, or Nadal. Murray of 2012 and 2013 probably wins 3 or 4 slams minus those guys.

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Post by Guest Tue 12 Jan 2016, 7:43 pm

temporary21 wrote:There is actually some limitations on raquets. They have machines that test their power, with no legal raquet allowed to exceed a 100 mph ball. I guess what you suggest is a limit on topspin revs. That's a nice idea, but very hard to do anything about, as that's got a lot to do with the players action, a lot moreso than the power.



With the youngsters, im not convinced a faster surface would benefit them. a lot of them coming up are not fast court players at all.

I would restrict racquet headsize. 

There is nothing that can be done for this generation and changes aren't going to restrict the current crop. I am looking further ahead. Variation. Reward all styles, not just one.

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Post by Mad for Chelsea Wed 13 Jan 2016, 12:17 am

I think the idea that speeding up the courts will somehow help the younger generation is somewhat misleading. I mean, are the youngers doing significantly better on faster surfaces than on the slower ones? Are they pushing Djokovic, Feds, Murray? Beating Berdych, Tsonga? I'm not seeing it.

Cincinnati, the fastest Masters, saw semi-finalists of Feds, Djokovic, Murray and Dolgopolov, despite Djokovic and Murray having played a long final in Canada previously and thus struggling with fatigue. Other losing quarter-finalists were Wawrinka, Gasquet, Berdych and Lopez. So you have one "youngster" reaching the QFs, and even Dolgo's not that young.

In 2014, you had Murray, Fognini, Wawrinka and surprisingly Djokovic (to Robredo) losing in the QFs, Raonic and Benneteau losing in the SFs, and "youngster" Ferrer losing to even younger Feds in the final. So again, only Raonic could be counted as a youngster.

I can't be bothered to look up every year, but for me there's no evidence that speeding up conditions will benefit the younger generation...

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Post by summerblues Wed 13 Jan 2016, 3:25 am

I do not think speeding up the conditions would necessarily help youngsters. It might even hurt them, as they all have been learning their tennis in current environment.

Also, I agree with those who say that a raw speed-up would not make tennis better - we would end up with ATP full of Raonic's. But tennis could make changes that would make traditional attacking tennis (S&V etc) feasible. But those changes would require more than just different court speed. Equipment parameters would need to be revised. I would love to see that, as I would love to see S&V dominate again. But not likely that will happen anytime soon, if ever.

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Post by summerblues Wed 13 Jan 2016, 3:31 am

Regarding youngsters, there may be various reasons why we have not seen anyone step up.  Maybe tennis changed to make it harder for youngsters (I am not convinced though).  But I do think that at least partly it is simply due to less talent in the cohort right after the current top players.

Biugo once posted the chart below, which suggests that that cohort did not have as much talent as either those before or after them.  I find that chart very compelling:

biugo wrote:And here is the evolution of the number of teenagers in Top 50, 100, 200, 300, 500 (capped at 20 players). The drop is pretty impressive! and the future starts to look brighter. [...]

Pre-AO 250's - Page 3 Top20y11

I am taking heart from this and hoping that the drought of youngsters near the top may be nearing the end.

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Post by HM Murdock Wed 13 Jan 2016, 8:52 am

I'm convinced the issue is overwhelmingly one of talent.

Djokovic began his 2011 season at the age of 23. By that stage he'd already been the year end #3 on four occasions, and had won a slam and numerous Masters.

That is only 5 years ago. It's not a distant past where conditions were different and tennis was played in a different way.

Being young is no impediment to being very successful in the modern game.

As for court speed, clearly there is not enough variety.

But I think the idea that a crop of talented attacking players are being held back by conditions is rather undermined by a 34yo Federer and a 30yo Wawrinka being in the top 4.

We even extend this to a 30yo Berdych, a 29 year old Gasquet and 30yo Tsonga being in the top ten.

If the talent were there, it would break through.

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Post by Guest Wed 13 Jan 2016, 9:53 am

Depends how cynical one is.

Wawrinka went from a powderpuff of a FH to a Thor Hammer one! Is that talent or is he on Popeye's Spinach?

There is a whole raft of issues in the game that I think need to be looked at and involves the dastardly time and money.

I don't begrudge Djokovic being successful. Even Federer's and Sampras's dominance at points wore me down. If you took that cluster of 3 players, apart from Federer, I don't think the other 2's praise would outweigh the negatives around their style/game.


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Post by HM Murdock Wed 13 Jan 2016, 10:29 am

What are the negatives of Djokovic's game? Apart from beating players we may like more?

Genuine question.

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Post by Guest Wed 13 Jan 2016, 10:39 am

The negatives I would say are more aesthetic. For example not the biggest/more risky FH I have seen, Not the most accomplished volleying, just not the most naturally attacking/aggressive player. There are strong points to his game, not denying that, but like Sampras lacks a bit in the wow factor.

It's like with any player, if you really follow them, you enjoy their game. As I said ages ago, I can't put my finger on it, but I can't enjoy his matches.

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Post by dummy_half Wed 13 Jan 2016, 1:20 pm

LK

I kind of get your point re Djokovic - what he does is extremely impressive but a little mechanical and so it leaves me a bit cold. He doesn't have the 'wow' factor of Federer's stroke play, or even Murray's variety of shot, but has a 'plan A' that he executes to such a high standard that it is too much for any of his opponents at least 80% of the time.

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Post by LuvSports! Wed 13 Jan 2016, 1:31 pm

I think Murray hasn't had variety of shot since 2008.

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Post by Born Slippy Wed 13 Jan 2016, 1:43 pm

Born Slippy wrote:
LuvSports! wrote:
temporary21 wrote:
legendkillarV2 wrote:Again posters are not asking for a multi slam champ to just appear out of nowhere. We just asking for promise. The fact youngsters can't make inroads at 500 level is speaking volumes. 

The game needs to act fast.
Fair enough. You wanna see breakout stars that are younger than what were getting. What do you propose though? I'm not sure what we can do, they're just not fully developed yet


A start would be bringing more variety week-week.
Fast courts. Carpet courts. Low bouncing courts. Smaller balls. Rewarding more than just one style.

No, no and no. Those courts reward one style and it isn't a pleasant one to watch. The majority of current courts allow a great server (Fed) and great returners to have some even matches. We've seen at Cincy or Brisbane that the balance is way too much in favour of the better server on those courts.

The only change which would actually lead to the type of variety of tennis you seek would be cutting back the racquet technology to take any both the extra serving power/consistency that can now be achieved and the excessive topspin which can be generated by most players.

I see LS has passed my comment onto Tenez on the other forum to obtain his comment. To paraphrase, Tenez' response was that whilst he partially agreed with my comment, the fact slams had more or less always been won by the fittest player over the last 10 years indicated that the balance is too much in favour of the fitter player. He considered smaller balls would be the answer.

I think my response to that would be that there have been 6 slam winners over the past decade. Three of those are primarily offensive players (Fed, Stan and DP) and three more defensive (although how defensive they truly are is a matter of debate). The comment that the fittest player has more or less won every slam has no evidential foundation and I suspect is some way off. The other players who have reached finals (Tsonga, Gonzalez, Berdych, Roddick and Ferrer) would again indicate a fair balance between attack and defence.

Of course, all the players who have won are fairly complete baseliners. No one has won a slam based solely on having a great serve. Fantastic in my view. Conversely, I accept that no one who SVies has won a slam since Sampras. My personal view is that is due to racquet changes in the 90s. I grew up playing tennis in the UK in the 90s. I never played anybody in junior tournaments who serve volleyed. Everything was based on having a sttong baseline game, with volleying being an afterthought. Strangely, we then see from the late 90s onwards that the same principles applied in the pro game. My view is very strongly that a serve volleyer with slam winning potential could make devastating in roads currently, especially at Wimbledon. There just aren't any out there.

As for using smaller balls, my immediate thought would be that would again primarily benefit the server. As I set out last year, the general position is that less service breaks are taking place than a decade ago. Whilst I accept that would give the likes of Raonic or Fed more shot at beating Novak, I'm unsure why we would move things more in favour of the server when that's the way tennis has been going anyway.


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Post by Guest Wed 13 Jan 2016, 2:08 pm

LuvSports! wrote:I think Murray hasn't had variety of shot since 2008.

You sir have won the internet Laugh

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Post by socal1976 Wed 13 Jan 2016, 4:05 pm

summerblues wrote:I do not think speeding up the conditions would necessarily help youngsters.  It might even hurt them, as they all have been learning their tennis in current environment.

Also, I agree with those who say that a raw speed-up would not make tennis better - we would end up with ATP full of Raonic's.  But tennis could make changes that would make traditional attacking tennis (S&V etc) feasible.  But those changes would require more than just different court speed.  Equipment parameters would need to be revised.  I would love to see that, as I would love to see S&V dominate again.  But not likely that will happen anytime soon, if ever.

People are nostalgic for that tennis should go back and watch late 90s Wimbledon on YouTube. What is required for serve and volley to dominate again is simple. Cut about ten to fifteen miles an hour and make it damn hard to hit a short fh for a winner. To have S and V back you have to so neuter the low risk option of the short fh to bring back S and V. Do you want to neuter every great Groundstroke to bring back a style that has been losing ground since the eighties? Not me I will chose to keep Nadal's FH, have u seen it live or fed's FH? His ball live looks like it defies physics. It seems to speed up then it checks as the spin gets going and seems to almost stop then it just sinks and then blows up off the court. Up close you can hear the ball ball spinning it makes this fizzing hiss sound.

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Post by Guest Wed 13 Jan 2016, 4:12 pm

Again people are not nostalgic for one particular game/style to take precedence over the other.

Balance, balance, balance. Healthy competition and variation.

If I could defy physics I would force choke all on this forum!

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Post by LuvSports! Wed 13 Jan 2016, 4:40 pm

legendkillarV2 wrote:
LuvSports! wrote:I think Murray hasn't had variety of shot since 2008.

You sir have won the internet Laugh

I beat Kim Kardassian? Thanks pal!

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Post by HM Murdock Wed 13 Jan 2016, 4:56 pm

I'd hazard a guess that the people complaining that slams are being won by the fittest players were not aggrieved that Federer was fitter than Philippoussis, Safin, Roddick, Baghdatis, Gonzalez etc when he was racking up his early slams.

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Post by Guest Wed 13 Jan 2016, 6:11 pm

And in reverse those who complained about Sampras winning and "serving" his way to his Slams don't feel agrived by Nadal or Djokovic winning them now. 

No style or game should take precedence over the other.

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Post by HM Murdock Wed 13 Jan 2016, 6:51 pm

legendkillarV2 wrote:And in reverse those who complained about Sampras winning and "serving" his way to his Slams don't feel agrived by Nadal or Djokovic winning them now. 

No style or game should take precedence over the other.
Not quite the same thing because Djoko and Nadal are not serving their way to slam titles.

Those who lament that fit players are dominating tend to turn a blind eye to the fact that Federer was fitter than all the players he dominated during his extreme dominant period.

And then the argument goes "Ah, but Federer did not base his game on fitness but Djokovic does". Which is willful blindness to what Djokovic actually does.

(Not saying that's your opinion, LK)

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Post by Guest Wed 13 Jan 2016, 7:01 pm

It is the same HM because what we are doing (not specifically me and you) is generalise a brand of tennis that is based on a dominant feature that is crucial to the success of that player. Eg Sampras only won because of his serve and Djokovic/Nadal won on the basis of the fitness. We know those players have much more to their respective games.

Do we really believe that Raonic if courts were fast would serve fest to victory at a Slam?? This is a guy who collapses when that stupid arm sleeve slips!

20 years ago 3 of the 4 surfaces played at a fast pace. So I agree yes change was required accommodate other styles. We now have 3 surfaces that play same and cater to 1 style! Not quite the advancement of evolution.

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Post by temporary21 Wed 13 Jan 2016, 7:53 pm

But do they really? A 34 year reached the final of two of those. We can't say they're all slow because novak wins on them clearly at least two benefit fast play. It's hard to swallow maybe, but novak is clearly the worlds best fast court player, as well as slow. The surfaces havenf catered to him, it's the opposite

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Post by Guest Wed 13 Jan 2016, 8:15 pm

How many players play a serve and volley game? None.

The surfaces are slow as anything. We have gone from a net orentated game to a baseline orentated game. Really only one player has an all court game.

Like stated, it's not Djokovics game or dominance alone which is what has people clambering for change.

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Post by paulcz Wed 13 Jan 2016, 8:30 pm

temporary21 wrote:Im not sure we can do much by making the surfaces more how they used to be. The best slow court players are Murray Nadal and Novak, and the best fast surface guys are Federer and Novak.
I mean we think of Novak as a slower surface guy, but he hoovers up almost every big title on indoor and grass, which are the fastest we have.

Speed everything up, and I dont think that will take out the stranglehold the top 3 have, the youngsters just arent the freaks that they are.

We may have to accept that until at least 2 of those 3 retire, the new generation isn't getting through

Absolutely agree. Since Novak has improved his serve he is able to serve out the matches and as he is the best on the return then I would say that he would be for some of speeding up as well.

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Post by Born Slippy Wed 13 Jan 2016, 8:38 pm

legendkillarV2 wrote:How many players play a serve and volley game? None.

The surfaces are slow as anything. We have gone from a net orentated game to a baseline orentated game. Really only one player has an all court game.

Like stated, it's not Djokovics game or dominance alone which is what has people clambering for change.

Yet Lopez (with a very ordinary baseline game) got to his career high ranking in 2015 aged 33. As I explained above, I don't think any slow-down in the courts led to the death of serve volley. It was on its way out as soon as graphite racquets came in. See also the fact that players on average hold serve more than they did in the 90s. I've no doubt some surfaces really are slow but there are plenty of surfaces a good serve volleyer would have a good shot at - Wimbledon being the obvious one.

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Post by Guest Wed 13 Jan 2016, 9:01 pm

Born Slippy wrote:
legendkillarV2 wrote:How many players play a serve and volley game? None.

The surfaces are slow as anything. We have gone from a net orentated game to a baseline orentated game. Really only one player has an all court game.

Like stated, it's not Djokovics game or dominance alone which is what has people clambering for change.

Yet Lopez (with a very ordinary baseline game) got to his career high ranking in 2015 aged 33. As I explained above, I don't think any slow-down in the courts led to the death of serve volley. It was on its way out as soon as graphite racquets came in. See also the fact that players on average hold serve more than they did in the 90s. I've no doubt some surfaces really are slow but there are plenty of surfaces a good serve volleyer would have a good shot at - Wimbledon being the obvious one.

Can I see the stats behind the fact you stated?

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Post by Born Slippy Wed 13 Jan 2016, 9:34 pm

I confess it isn't a detailed analysis. Taken from another thread:

"There is a fairly clear pattern actually. Taking an arbitrary mark of the 20th best returner in each year, the return games won % for the 20th best player is as follows:

91 - 29%
95 - 29%
00 - 26%
05 - 26%
10 - 24%
15 - 23%"

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Post by Guest Wed 13 Jan 2016, 9:56 pm

I see 91 and 95, but not 90,92,93,94,96,97,98 or 99. Plus your measuring a 10 year span against a 15 year span. Not like for like.

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Post by Born Slippy Wed 13 Jan 2016, 10:16 pm

ATP doesn't have stats for 1990. Every year from 91-99 has the 20th player winning 27% - 29% of return games (with the majority being 28% or 29%).

The last two years the 20th best returner won 22% of return games in that year. No other years since 1991 were lower than 24% (and no year before 2010 was lower than 25%).

Taking the 20th best returner is fairly arbitrary but it's compelling evidence that it's now harder to break serve than at any time since the records start.

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Post by Guest Wed 13 Jan 2016, 11:20 pm

The question is really, is the servers being better or the returners being poorer? Which is totally subjective. 

You said in an earlier post that faster conds would equate to a serve orentated game. Clearly not the case if the stats provided are anything to go by wouldn't one agree? chin

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Post by Born Slippy Thu 14 Jan 2016, 12:41 am

I would say it's fairly clear that the level of both the average player's serve and return are higher now. You aren't seriously trying to argue that general groundstroke production skills are decreasing I assume?

Your second point ignores increases in technology which, in my view, is the reason why there has been a slight move in favour of the server over the last 20 years. The slowing down of the courts (which I feel has been significantly exaggerated in any event) has only worked to counteract that impact. There is no chance that faster courts would work in favour of the returner.

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Post by summerblues Thu 14 Jan 2016, 2:27 am

legendkillarV2 wrote:The question is really, is the servers being better or the returners being poorer?
I tend to agree with BS on the serve vs return in current game.  The stats do seem to indicate quite conclusively that the percent of holds is higher than in the past.  Most likely that is because - on average - a server has a bigger advantage than ever.  That is why simple speed-up/slow-down will not quite work.  Either way we will be stuck with power tennis - either serve only (a la Raonic, if courts are sped up), or baseline only (a la Nadal/Djokovic etc, if they are not) and a lack of variety.

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Post by summerblues Thu 14 Jan 2016, 2:30 am

socal1976 wrote:Do you want to neuter every great Groundstroke to bring back a style that has been losing ground since the eighties? Not me I will chose to keep Nadal's FH, have u seen it live or fed's FH? His ball live looks like it defies physics.
Yes, I would obviously give up some of today's groundies for S&V.  Otherwise I would not be complaining about today's tennis.  I realize you cannot quite have both, and I definitely prefer less power and more variety.

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Post by summerblues Thu 14 Jan 2016, 2:34 am

temporary21 wrote:It's hard to swallow maybe, but novak is clearly the worlds best fast court player, as well as slow. The surfaces havenf catered to him, it's the opposite
But that does not quite deal with the issue.  In current conditions, the difference between optimal gamestyle is much smaller from one court to the next.  Players who win at RG and Wimbledon play much the same game.

In the old days, the difference was much bigger (I would say even too big in the 90s), so it was much harder to dominate everywhere.

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Post by Guest Thu 14 Jan 2016, 7:29 am

Born Slippy wrote:I would say it's fairly clear that the level of both the average player's serve and return are higher now. You aren't seriously trying to argue that general groundstroke production skills are decreasing I assume?

Your second point ignores increases in technology which, in my view, is the reason why there has been a slight move in favour of the server over the last 20 years. The slowing down of the courts (which I feel has been significantly exaggerated in any event) has only worked to counteract that impact. There is no chance that faster courts would work in favour of the returner.

Are you suggesting they are higher? Because again subjective. It's your research, not mine and one you used to advocate slowing down even further which is what happened and as a result players are holding serve more frequently. How is that good for the game? Faster conditions have shown that they don't have the high frequency of players holding serve.

Now what would've been more interesting is the amount of un-returned serves in both decades wouldn't you think to add to this silly notion that a Raonic would be more successful purely because he mullers the ball. Which is what you and SB are seriously suggesting which frankly is a load of nonsense.

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Post by Born Slippy Thu 14 Jan 2016, 8:35 am

Hmm, fairly odd argument. However, if you are now arguing that fast courts are good for returners, I don't see why you would want the courts sped up. That's not going to help serve volleyers then.

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