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Pre-AO 250's

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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 Guest Thu 14 Jan 2016, 10:21 am

I don't see how it is odd. The changes I requested cater for all. It's not about just speeding up courts. It's other elements too. Racquet head size, strings etc. Like I said there is a lot that needs doing if the game is to strike a balance. I said change is incremental. It's not like if tomorrow everything changed and the top of the game looks radically different, because it won't. The game was swung in extremes.

Look at the argument you present that returning is better than the 90's. If I had a 100in racquet head with synthetic and kevlar strings versus a 85in racquet head with natural gut, what do you think requires more skill in engineering a return from say a 120mph serve? With a 100in Racquet Head I am more than likely to have more forgiveness with a shot than I would with a 85in Racquet Head.

People prefer different styles. Some like the current style, whereas others don't. I'd prefer a balance similar to the Becker/Edberg/Lendl/Wilander dynamic. By all accounts all styles should be able to strive in all conditions, but in this age it is not the case. Is this down to the conditions or dearth of talent? It's a compelling argument that will rage on.


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Post by temporary21 Thu 14 Jan 2016, 10:46 am

But making each surface deliberately very extremely different doesn't really give any variety. Just the same type of game dominating per court. You'll get grind fests on clay and serve fests on grass. What you want is a variety of styles to be able to work on any surface. Fed and novak are a pretty good example that we've got that

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Post by HM Murdock Thu 14 Jan 2016, 11:01 am

Slam semi finalists in 2015:

Djokovic
Federer
Murray
Wawrinka
Berdych
Tsonga
Gasquet
Cilic

No SVers, but not a bad spread of styles.

Interesting also to note how few could really be called defensive players, and how few would be considered great movers or having great fitness.

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Post by Guest Thu 14 Jan 2016, 11:36 am

temporary21 wrote:But making each surface deliberately very extremely different doesn't really give any variety. Just the same type of game dominating per court. You'll get grind fests on clay and serve fests on grass. What you want is a variety of styles to be able to work on any surface. Fed and novak are a pretty good example that we've got that

So two styles exceeding on multiple varied speed surfaces is less variety than 1 across multiple same speed surfaces? Not sure I follow or buy that for a second.

If players are good enough to adapt to other speeds and surfaces they will. Agassi being a prime example.

The whole serve fest cr@p is a myth as displayed by the stats provided earlier.

A slug fest is no more attractive than a serve fest is it.

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Post by LuvSports! Thu 14 Jan 2016, 12:39 pm

OK OK

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Post by Born Slippy Thu 14 Jan 2016, 1:08 pm

legendkillarV2 wrote:I don't see how it is odd. The changes I requested cater for all. It's not about just speeding up courts. It's other elements too. Racquet head size, strings etc. Like I said there is a lot that needs doing if the game is to strike a balance. I said change is incremental. It's not like if tomorrow everything changed and the top of the game looks radically different, because it won't. The game was swung in extremes.

Look at the argument you present that returning is better than the 90's. If I had a 100in racquet head with synthetic and kevlar strings versus a 85in racquet head with natural gut, what do you think requires more skill in engineering a return from say a 120mph serve? With a 100in Racquet Head I am more than likely to have more forgiveness with a shot than I would with a 85in Racquet Head.

People prefer different styles. Some like the current style, whereas others don't. I'd prefer a balance similar to the Becker/Edberg/Lendl/Wilander dynamic. By all accounts all styles should be able to strive in all conditions, but in this age it is not the case. Is this down to the conditions or dearth of talent? It's a compelling argument that will rage on.


I don't disagree with you that limiting racquet/string tech would potentially result in an increased place for volleying. If you look at my first post, that was my main point. Where I disagree is that speeding the courts up generally (or anything other than changing racquet tech) would have that effect. You would also need a massive change in racquet tech - by which I mean more or less back to wooden racquets for the change to be effective.

Your interpretation of the stats I provided to support an argument that slowing down the courts has no impact on serving is what I described as odd. If the status quo had stayed the same for everything else then that would be a sensible conclusion. However, we know that racquet/string tech has improved and we know that players on an average serving harder than in the 90s (I don't have any data to hand to support that before you ask but I'm sure it will be available). It is also uncontroversial that fast courts favour big servers - I can pull out some stats from grass compared to clay if that is disputed. Consequently, do you not accept that the logical conclusion from the stats is that serve would be even more dominant now had courts not been slowed?

I would also prefer more volleying in the game but my view is that battle is lost. There simply isn't the incentive for young players using modern day racquets (and by modern day I basically mean anything post 1990) to adopt that style. I should add that, if a player of slam winning potential did come through with that style (i.e. Sampras type levels), I suspect that they would be very successful on a wide range of current surfaces, particularly at Wimbledon. Where there is debate is whether the current balance between defence and attack is right. Certainly at slam level, I believe that it is. As HM's SF data handily shows, many different styles can still succeed. It just happens that the best current player is perceived as being relatively defensive (though how accurate that is I am unsure).

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Post by HM Murdock Thu 14 Jan 2016, 1:43 pm

Born Slippy wrote: As HM's SF data handily shows, many different styles can still succeed. It just happens that the best current player is perceived as being relatively defensive (though how accurate that is I am unsure).
I think this is a really important point.

This is necessarily speculative, but if Djokovic didn't exist, there's every chance that the 2015 slam winners would have been:

AO: Murray
RG: Wawrinka
W: Federer
USO: Federer

And in 2014, it would have been:

AO: Wawrinka
RG: Nadal
W: Federer
USO: Cilic

All the discussion would be about how attacking play is prospering (and how SHBHs are still effective!).

But because Djokovic does exist, there are complaints about the courts.

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Post by Born Slippy Thu 14 Jan 2016, 2:55 pm

Taking that one step further, if Federer didn't exist then Roddick would have won somewhere around 6 slams from 2003-2005 (including 3 Wimbledons) and by 2005 everyone would have been clamouring for Wimbledon to be slowed down to stop serve dominated tennis.

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Post by dummy_half Thu 14 Jan 2016, 4:23 pm

The stats on return games won are interesting and difficult to explain:

Rackets have changed in a way that makes them easier to return with.
Faster surfaces have generally been slowed down, which was intended to reduce the dominance of serve

Yet

Fewer breaks of serve.

My thought - it was easier to break the serve of a S&V player because it was easier to make a telling return that would either not come back (usually through a forced error) or be popped up by the advancing server, to allow a 4th shot winner. Sever stays back and they have a much better chance of controlling the rally from the third shot, but the rallies tend to be more extended.

Oh, and courts are more consistent, with reliable bounce, so it is easier to swing through ground strokes. When did you last see a genuine bad bounce?

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Post by Belovedluckyboy Thu 14 Jan 2016, 5:12 pm

^^ on clay and on grass.

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Post by Guest Thu 14 Jan 2016, 6:39 pm

 Born Slippy wrote:
legendkillarV2 wrote:I don't see how it is odd. The changes I requested cater for all. It's not about just speeding up courts. It's other elements too. Racquet head size, strings etc. Like I said there is a lot that needs doing if the game is to strike a balance. I said change is incremental. It's not like if tomorrow everything changed and the top of the game looks radically different, because it won't. The game was swung in extremes.

Look at the argument you present that returning is better than the 90's. If I had a 100in racquet head with synthetic and kevlar strings versus a 85in racquet head with natural gut, what do you think requires more skill in engineering a return from say a 120mph serve? With a 100in Racquet Head I am more than likely to have more forgiveness with a shot than I would with a 85in Racquet Head.

People prefer different styles. Some like the current style, whereas others don't. I'd prefer a balance similar to the Becker/Edberg/Lendl/Wilander dynamic. By all accounts all styles should be able to strive in all conditions, but in this age it is not the case. Is this down to the conditions or dearth of talent? It's a compelling argument that will rage on.


I don't disagree with you that limiting racquet/string tech would potentially result in an increased place for volleying. If you look at my first post, that was my main point. Where I disagree is that speeding the courts up generally (or anything other than changing racquet tech) would have that effect. You would also need a massive change in racquet tech - by which I mean more or less back to wooden racquets for the change to be effective.

Your interpretation of the stats I provided to support an argument that slowing down the courts has no impact on serving is what I described as odd. If the status quo had stayed the same for everything else then that would be a sensible conclusion. However, we know that racquet/string tech has improved and we know that players on an average serving harder than in the 90s (I don't have any data to hand to support that before you ask but I'm sure it will be available). It is also uncontroversial that fast courts favour big servers - I can pull out some stats from grass compared to clay if that is disputed. Consequently, do you not accept that the logical conclusion from the stats is that serve would be even more dominant now had courts not been slowed?

I would also prefer more volleying in the game but my view is that battle is lost. There simply isn't the incentive for young players using modern day racquets (and by modern day I basically mean anything post 1990) to adopt that style. I should add that, if a player of slam winning potential did come through with that style (i.e. Sampras type levels), I suspect that they would be very successful on a wide range of current surfaces, particularly at Wimbledon. Where there is debate is whether the current balance between defence and attack is right. Certainly at slam level, I believe that it is. As HM's SF data handily shows, many different styles can still succeed. It just happens that the best current player is perceived as being relatively defensive (though how accurate that is I am unsure).

Slowing down surfaces have seen servers hold serve far more consistently than the servebots! So how does further slowing down surfaces create bigger opportunities for those wanting to return serve? I will tell you now that speeding up surfaces will put an end to serves being rolled in and held because the other guy can't withstand a 25 shot rally!

The point I am making is that Sampras is somewhat synomonous with serving opponents into submission when he wasn't the fastest server on tour! That annoys me as much as those that associate Djokovic or Nadal as the fittest players ever.

I want to keep watching 4 hour matches!

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Post by temporary21 Thu 14 Jan 2016, 6:44 pm

well I don't want 90's tennis again. You always want a good contest between defence and attack in some way on a surface. 4 Surfaces with different, but no variety is as predictable as them all the same

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Post by Guest Thu 14 Jan 2016, 6:46 pm

HM Murdock wrote:
Born Slippy wrote: As HM's SF data handily shows, many different styles can still succeed. It just happens that the best current player is perceived as being relatively defensive (though how accurate that is I am unsure).
I think this is a really important point.

This is necessarily speculative, but if Djokovic didn't exist, there's every chance that the 2015 slam winners would have been:

AO: Murray
RG: Wawrinka
W: Federer
USO: Federer

And in 2014, it would have been:

AO: Wawrinka
RG: Nadal
W: Federer
USO: Cilic

All the discussion would be about how attacking play is prospering (and how SHBHs are still effective!).

But because Djokovic does exist, there are complaints about the courts.

Not at all. I wanted change before this period of dominance. I don't hold it personally against Djokovic. Just happens to be the best at what he does in the current climate. I don't take it personally he beats a Brit so easily and frequently. I don't take it personally that Federer gets beat like some do. 

I look at is as a monopoly in need of fresh competition and alternatives.

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Post by temporary21 Thu 14 Jan 2016, 6:47 pm

legendkillarV2 wrote:
temporary21 wrote:But making each surface deliberately very extremely different doesn't really give any variety. Just the same type of game dominating per court. You'll get grind fests on clay and serve fests on grass. What you want is a variety of styles to be able to work on any surface. Fed and novak are a pretty good example that we've got that

So two styles exceeding on multiple varied speed surfaces is less variety than 1 across multiple same speed surfaces? Not sure I follow or buy that for a second.

If players are good enough to adapt to other speeds and surfaces they will. Agassi being a prime example.

The whole serve fest cr@p is a myth as displayed by the stats provided earlier.

A slug fest is no more attractive than a serve fest is it.

You've completely misinterpreted what I was getting at.
You want all surfaces to give a chance to multiple styles. You seem to want to make it so only one style can dominate one surface just for the sake of it.


If the serve fest was a myth then what was Sampras Ivanisevic? Or Federer Roddick 2009?

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Post by Guest Thu 14 Jan 2016, 6:57 pm

temporary21 wrote:
legendkillarV2 wrote:
temporary21 wrote:But making each surface deliberately very extremely different doesn't really give any variety. Just the same type of game dominating per court. You'll get grind fests on clay and serve fests on grass. What you want is a variety of styles to be able to work on any surface. Fed and novak are a pretty good example that we've got that

So two styles exceeding on multiple varied speed surfaces is less variety than 1 across multiple same speed surfaces? Not sure I follow or buy that for a second.

If players are good enough to adapt to other speeds and surfaces they will. Agassi being a prime example.

The whole serve fest cr@p is a myth as displayed by the stats provided earlier.

A slug fest is no more attractive than a serve fest is it.

You've completely misinterpreted what I was getting at.
You want all surfaces to give a chance to multiple styles. You seem to want to make it so only one style can dominate one surface just for the sake of it.


If the serve fest was a myth then what was Sampras Ivanisevic? Or Federer Roddick 2009?

So where have I said I want one style to dominate?

I want the surfaces to play their natural way. Who wins on it is anyone's guess and down to the field.

I have no problem watching Sampras/Ivanisevic. Because I don't have image of "oh look an ace" least their encounters would be decided in under 4 hours!

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Post by socal1976 Thu 14 Jan 2016, 7:43 pm

Temporary makes good points in that variety in life is a good thing yet the changes we all see being put forward are only those aimed at helping power and attack players. 

And yes LK servefests are worse than long matches, that isn't my opinion alone that is why all the tournaments slowed down to better market themselves and give the fans what they want. I mean a quick player like fed serving on a fast surface would be done with most best of three matches in an hour or less. People like longer rallies and long encounters maybe not the purist but advertisers and those in sports marketing see the benefits of it for the business they are in. If the business people in tennis thought they could make as much with wood racquets and courts as fast as ice they would. Most fans like long matches with tough rallies for the same reason that most fat people like buffets because it is more of what they like. In the list of all time great matches you will find few if any of those matches lasted less than three hours.

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Post by Guest Thu 14 Jan 2016, 8:08 pm

Ummmmm it's not the long matches that are putting bums in seats. I haven't seen packed stadium unless it's Federer or Nadal playing and that's outside the Slams too.

Didn't the women's AO final last year attract more TV viewers than the men's someone posted?

Give them more!

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Post by socal1976 Thu 14 Jan 2016, 8:30 pm

Yes it involved a cricket match being scheduled at the same time. Again I challenge you to find a great match on anyone's list that wasn't a long match you assume that match length has no correlation but people talk of great five setters. People are nostalgic for old school tennis because they haven't seen it for awhile. Like I said the tournament owners made their decisions to garner more fan support. If the situation is dire like you and others claim they will change it instantly if they could make more money by going back to s and v

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Post by Guest Thu 14 Jan 2016, 8:40 pm

Again you like the others on here and not reading my posts. I am not saying go back to a S&V dominated game. Variety!!

Oh and for a classic. Sampras/Courier AO 1995 5 sets under 4 hours.

So Djokovic and Murray were not more popular than a cricket match? 

Alarming.

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Post by Born Slippy Thu 14 Jan 2016, 9:08 pm

Weren't the figures Oz TV figures? I would suggest that, in that country, a cricket match being on would have a big impact even if it was Fedal.

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Post by Born Slippy Thu 14 Jan 2016, 9:15 pm

legendkillarV2 wrote:
 Born Slippy wrote:
legendkillarV2 wrote:I don't see how it is odd. The changes I requested cater for all. It's not about just speeding up courts. It's other elements too. Racquet head size, strings etc. Like I said there is a lot that needs doing if the game is to strike a balance. I said change is incremental. It's not like if tomorrow everything changed and the top of the game looks radically different, because it won't. The game was swung in extremes.

Look at the argument you present that returning is better than the 90's. If I had a 100in racquet head with synthetic and kevlar strings versus a 85in racquet head with natural gut, what do you think requires more skill in engineering a return from say a 120mph serve? With a 100in Racquet Head I am more than likely to have more forgiveness with a shot than I would with a 85in Racquet Head.

People prefer different styles. Some like the current style, whereas others don't. I'd prefer a balance similar to the Becker/Edberg/Lendl/Wilander dynamic. By all accounts all styles should be able to strive in all conditions, but in this age it is not the case. Is this down to the conditions or dearth of talent? It's a compelling argument that will rage on.


I don't disagree with you that limiting racquet/string tech would potentially result in an increased place for volleying. If you look at my first post, that was my main point. Where I disagree is that speeding the courts up generally (or anything other than changing racquet tech) would have that effect. You would also need a massive change in racquet tech - by which I mean more or less back to wooden racquets for the change to be effective.

Your interpretation of the stats I provided to support an argument that slowing down the courts has no impact on serving is what I described as odd. If the status quo had stayed the same for everything else then that would be a sensible conclusion. However, we know that racquet/string tech has improved and we know that players on an average serving harder than in the 90s (I don't have any data to hand to support that before you ask but I'm sure it will be available). It is also uncontroversial that fast courts favour big servers - I can pull out some stats from grass compared to clay if that is disputed. Consequently, do you not accept that the logical conclusion from the stats is that serve would be even more dominant now had courts not been slowed?

I would also prefer more volleying in the game but my view is that battle is lost. There simply isn't the incentive for young players using modern day racquets (and by modern day I basically mean anything post 1990) to adopt that style. I should add that, if a player of slam winning potential did come through with that style (i.e. Sampras type levels), I suspect that they would be very successful on a wide range of current surfaces, particularly at Wimbledon. Where there is debate is whether the current balance between defence and attack is right. Certainly at slam level, I believe that it is. As HM's SF data handily shows, many different styles can still succeed. It just happens that the best current player is perceived as being relatively defensive (though how accurate that is I am unsure).

Slowing down surfaces have seen servers hold serve far more consistently than the servebots! So how does further slowing down surfaces create bigger opportunities for those wanting to return serve? I will tell you now that speeding up surfaces will put an end to serves being rolled in and held because the other guy can't withstand a 25 shot rally!

The point I am making is that Sampras is somewhat synomonous with serving opponents into submission when he wasn't the fastest server on tour! That annoys me as much as those that associate Djokovic or Nadal as the fittest players ever.

I want to keep watching 4 hour matches!

I can't reply any further on your first para. I think I've fully addressed the point and you keep ignoring what I say. I would say the last sentence is a straw man argument as that simply doesn't happen. Even Nadal has sought to improve his serve to make it a weapon.

I don't disagree with your second para but I don't see how it's relevant. Sampras was s fantastic all-court player who produced some stunning matches. However, he was much more watchable on medium paced courts where he had to utilise all his skills, rather than on the quicker surfaces where he was near untouchable on serve. He was also right up there in terms of speed at the time,

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Post by Guest Thu 14 Jan 2016, 9:31 pm

It doesn't happen???

All I will say is good lord.

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Post by Born Slippy Thu 14 Jan 2016, 9:40 pm

You actually think that top players roll the serve in (taking away the chance to win the point on the one shot that's totally in their control) so that they can have 25 shot rallies?

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Post by Guest Thu 14 Jan 2016, 10:19 pm

Are you suggesting top players go gun ho on 2nd serves?

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Post by socal1976 Thu 14 Jan 2016, 11:43 pm

legendkillarV2 wrote:Again you like the others on here and not reading my posts. I am not saying go back to a S&V dominated game. Variety!!

Oh and for a classic. Sampras/Courier AO 1995 5 sets under 4 hours.

So Djokovic and Murray were not more popular than a cricket match? 

Alarming.
I am not saying you want s and v dominance, what I am saying is that the variety you want is bad for business maybe it is good for the game, that is debatable. and furthermore as BS and I have said you probably need the slow conditions and tech to return the avg male players first serve. Already last year we saw a number of players well over 90 percent hold percentage. It is already highly difficult to return a first serve on the Atp tour the changes you discuss would create a whole top twenty of guys holding above 90. 

Plus I like variety, but even variety has to be in moderation. The surface specialists have been killed by the so called homogenized surfaces. That is good thing not a bad thing. I don't want to see half the top twenty get beat in the first two rounds of RG by juanpablo whoisthat and or manual neverheardovuinni like we saw routinely in the 90s. Remember this whole revolt started when continental clay courters threatened to boycott wimpy because of how terrible the bounces were that you simply could not compete. I am sorry I don't want to see guys selling out their technique and training to ambush better players for two months of the season. The whole idea back then was that the surface and conditions should not change things so much that they end up determining the outcome in favor of one or other set of players.

These things were huge concerns in the 90s, I remember the discussions back then. Power was killing the game, big serves were making wimby unwatchable, the French open was seeing a bunch of no names playing each other in the third and fourth rounds as the fast court players were all out by the first week. Again the reason we can't go a little faster is because the players can barely return the male pro serve now.

By the way I asked you for a great match under three hours and you came up with one in under 4 hrs, nice shift of the goal posts once you saw you had no chance of making the kick.

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Post by socal1976 Thu 14 Jan 2016, 11:48 pm

legendkillarV2 wrote:Are you suggesting top players go gun ho on 2nd serves?
 I swing faster on my kick serve than on any other shot other than a kill overhead. That is the only way to hit an effective kick serve. A fast, upward, swing that makes as thin a contact as possible on the ball. It sounds counterintuitive but you can't swing as big or fast on a flat serve because you can't get the ball to come into the box, while clearing the net. Without spin there is only a certain pace you can hit and still have the ball stay in the court

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Post by summerblues Fri 15 Jan 2016, 3:27 am

temporary21 wrote:What you want is a variety of styles to be able to work on any surface. Fed and novak are a pretty good example that we've got that

HM Murdock wrote:Slam semi finalists in 2015:
Djokovic
Federer
Murray
Wawrinka
Berdych
Tsonga
Gasquet
Cilic

No SVers, but not a bad spread of styles.

This is where we disagree.  We all see the same thing, we even agree on what we are seeing, but we do not agree on whether it is varied enough.  It is varied enough for you, but not even close to it for me.

Federer and Djokovic are probably on the opposite spectrum among these players style-wise, but their styles are much closer to what the opposite-styles used to be.

McEnroe compared to Borg
Edberg compared to Wilander
Sampras compared to maybe Bruguera

In all these cases the style spread was far far bigger.  That alone should at least make you understand where someone who complains about uniformity is coming from.

As much as I like Federer, he won most of his titles playing largely from the baseline - and he is the most aggressive of the players on your lists.  A list of tennis players with no S&Ver in it is - to me - by definition not showing a good spread of styles.

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Post by summerblues Fri 15 Jan 2016, 3:34 am

Born Slippy wrote:I would also prefer more volleying in the game but my view is that battle is lost.
You may well be right, but for me tennis without S&V is missing a critical component - certainly the component of tennis that I liked the most.  And that is not addressed by some second tier-players winning a match or three at Wimbledon.  Tennis should allow S&Vers (real S&Vers - such as McEnroe, Edberg or Becker - as opposed to guys who occasionally attack the net)  to have legitimate chance at #1.  And we do not have that.

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Post by socal1976 Fri 15 Jan 2016, 4:23 am

summerblues wrote:
Born Slippy wrote:I would also prefer more volleying in the game but my view is that battle is lost.
You may well be right, but for me tennis without S&V is missing a critical component - certainly the component of tennis that I liked the most.  And that is not addressed by some second tier-players winning a match or three at Wimbledon.  Tennis should allow S&Vers (real S&Vers - such as McEnroe, Edberg or Becker - as opposed to guys who occasionally attack the net)  to have legitimate chance at #1.  And we do not have that.

Ahhh, this post is a wonderful demonstration of why I just don't buy this whole variety/ bring back some S and V mumbo jumbo. Beware when anyone sells you on the word should? You seem to be missing the part of the equation that the word "should" involves huge wholesale changes to the game that would drastically alter the sport at the highest levels to things we have never seen since the introduction of the graphite racquet. Call me a creature of my times but I don't want to see the racquet go back to 1980 just like I don't want to see my phone or computer go back to then either or society as a whole.   Again these utopians always fail to realize that there were really good reasons for throwing out the way things used to be.

As I have said before to bring back S and V you would need to lop 10-15 miles an hour off of your average groundstrokes and returns. The day you take 15 or more miles an hour off of your forehand is the day that magically everyone will volley again. It is all about risk and reward ratio for players who want to win. As long as you can hit a short forehand with way less risk than charging up and volleying, then S and V will be on the way out. As it was even in the fast court 90s. Even in that period among the top 10,20 or 100 most players were not principally volleyers or Serve and Volleyers. So those that say we don't wan't the 90s back we just want S and V to comeback, I say if you want S and V to comeback with today's bigger, taller, stronger, better coached athlete than you have to go way beyond the 90s and gear everything in the game for attack. The fans won't like it and the players would revolt, just like they did with wimby in the late 90s, even worse because of the increased power of the modern male player with his increased power, strength, fitness, and height then tennis would be way more one dimensionally power based than anything, anything we have seen to date.

Even in the 90s S and V was dying. I mean lets remember that in the 70s everyone played that way, it lost ground steadily and surely long before luxilon and the big slow down. And again I don't want to neuter the groundstrokes of the great players today so you guys can watch 1980s tennis. It is a utopian pie in the sky that just will not work, as I said beware of the guy who sells you on the word "should", should comes with a lot of kickers that aren't all wonderful as the nostalgics would like you to believe.

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Post by Guest Fri 15 Jan 2016, 6:41 am

socal1976 wrote:
legendkillarV2 wrote:Again you like the others on here and not reading my posts. I am not saying go back to a S&V dominated game. Variety!!

Oh and for a classic. Sampras/Courier AO 1995 5 sets under 4 hours.

So Djokovic and Murray were not more popular than a cricket match? 

Alarming.
I am not saying you want s and v dominance, what I am saying is that the variety you want is bad for business maybe it is good for the game, that is debatable. and furthermore as BS and I have said you probably need the slow conditions and tech to return the avg male players first serve. Already last year we saw a number of players well over 90 percent hold percentage. It is already highly difficult to return a first serve on the Atp tour the changes you discuss would create a whole top twenty of guys holding above 90. 

Plus I like variety, but even variety has to be in moderation. The surface specialists have been killed by the so called homogenized surfaces. That is good thing not a bad thing. I don't want to see half the top twenty get beat in the first two rounds of RG by juanpablo whoisthat and or manual neverheardovuinni like we saw routinely in the 90s. Remember this whole revolt started when continental clay courters threatened to boycott wimpy because of how terrible the bounces were that you simply could not compete. I am sorry I don't want to see guys selling out their technique and training to ambush better players for two months of the season. The whole idea back then was that the surface and conditions should not change things so much that they end up determining the outcome in favor of one or other set of players.

These things were huge concerns in the 90s, I remember the discussions back then. Power was killing the game, big serves were making wimby unwatchable, the French open was seeing a bunch of no names playing each other in the third and fourth rounds as the fast court players were all out by the first week. Again the reason we can't go a little faster is because the players can barely return the male pro serve now.

By the way I asked you for a great match under three hours and you came up with one in under 4 hrs, nice shift of the goal posts once you saw you had no chance of making the kick.

Who shifted the goal posts when I originally stated 4 hours?

Once again you fumbled the pass.

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Post by Born Slippy Fri 15 Jan 2016, 8:32 am

legendkillarV2 wrote:Are you suggesting top players go gun ho on 2nd serves?

My apologies, I naturally assumed you were referring to first serves. In any event, having a weak second serve gets punished in today's conditions. It would get covered up more in quicker conditions (Andy's second serve stats are generally far better at Wimbledon for example) plus players could take a little off their first serve relying on the speed of the courts to get them a weak reply anyway.

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Post by Guest Fri 15 Jan 2016, 8:54 am

Look at Andy. When he can't hit his first serve around the 120-130mph mark, he drops it significantly to around 105-110mph mark to get it in. Now to me, that says he is looking to get a good enough serve in to  take control of the impending rally, that of course is based on the return not being unreturned. 

I did try and find the average serve speeds of the top guys to see the difference in speed between first and second and couldn't find a decent source. I'd hedge that difference between 1st and 2nd serve speeds in the 90's compared to this decade might be closer.

I don't have an issue with some freebie points on the serve, not saying it has to be massive. To me at least it seems everyone's memory of the 90's was Sampras cleaning up at Wimbledon. A 2 week tournament out of a 40 week calendar perhaps? There is no guarantee that if those conditions existed now that a Raonic would suddenly win on the surface.

I didn't enjoy the whole of Sampras's dominance like I didn't with Federer's or now Djokovic's. Trying to even unpick how the game can encourage competition is purely open to ideas and debate. I assume you live in the UK and if so would know that tennis has a low profile. Where I live tennis clubs are cutting back on classes for youngsters. I can't comment for the whole world, but the game needs a shakedown.

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Post by Born Slippy Fri 15 Jan 2016, 11:11 am

I firmly believe Sampras would have great shot at winning Wimbledon in current conditions. His serve would be a few miles per hour quicker and no one would be consistently bulleting it back. Look how effective Fed's serve was against Murray for example, who is one of the all time greats at returning. No need to speed the court up for him.

Andy slows his serve down to protect his weak second serve, not to deliberately engage in a 25 shot rally. His aim is to get a slightly weak return and then end the point with a couple of groundies. Of course, on quicker courts that strategy would be much easier to execute as his slower slice serve is incredibly effective.

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Post by Guest Fri 15 Jan 2016, 11:20 am

So a slower serve isn't going to equate to a troublesome return or ace is it? So if your Andy, to drop your serve down that much suggests no just protecting a second serve, but the confidence in being able to hold his own in a rally. He doesn't have a kick serve or a spin serve. It's a flat serve he has.

I don't think Sampras would have a shot in for Wimbledon. Passing shots would kill him. He wouldn't change his mindset as he did state in an interview he would still charge. The timing players now have to pick a shot makes the S&V approach more suicidal. His serve would thrive, but would the best returners get a read on it? Now how his baseline game would stack up (yes it isn't an expansive baseline game) he has the FH and a dependable BH.

Looking at Djokovic. Seriously how do you beat the guy? There are no freebies unless you put on a 90% first serve in clinic ala Karlovic/Isner. I'd go for a Lendl approach and if I can't hit winners, I'll just hit ball at him instead! Git!

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Post by temporary21 Fri 15 Jan 2016, 11:26 am

Its the same equation as Fed in 06

What could you do to beat him? Back then he had only one weakness, good stuff to the bh could get you a few cheap points and short balls.

How you beat current Novak? Either have a freak day, or perhaps don't try and just blast through him, shorter stuff and slice DOES still just about work on him, instead of moving him side to side, nearly useless, pull him in a bit with a slice then force him back.

That's why fed has some success here and there, and Murray and Nadal are getting pancaked, despite being well capable of doing that.

that's why I like the current surfaces, theres no easy out, but you can defend, and you can attack, but you need to be clever about it.

I don't think the answer is to set it up so its easier for the new guys, they need to be shown how to develop an attacking game when your opponent can defend well side to side

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Post by Guest Fri 15 Jan 2016, 11:56 am

There are players with an attacking game temp21. However, such is the norm they need to bulk up and become fitter. Look no further than Murray after and every defeat in Slams, the desire was to improve fitness and not his shotmaking. That tells a story in itself. I think tennis just needs to shift in the other direction slightly so the improvement is more varied.


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Post by summerblues Sat 16 Jan 2016, 4:25 am

socal1976 wrote:You seem to be missing the part of the equation that the word "should" involves huge wholesale changes to the game that would drastically alter the sport at the highest levels to things we have never seen since the introduction of the graphite racquet.
I do not think I am missing that part.  In some sense that is exactly my point.  You say going back would require huge changes from where we are.  Which is just about the same as admitting that where we are is hugely different from where tennis used to be.  And I liked the old style far better.

Look, in some sense I do not have any beef with what you are saying.  You effectively say something like "yes, tennis has changed a lot, and you can take it or leave it, it is not going back".  Which is fair enough.  I have bigger problem with those who like to twist and turn and talk about how today's tennis allows for variety of styles, and are reluctant to admit that it is far far more uniform than it used to be in the old days.

socal1976 wrote:Call me a creature of my times but I don't want to see the racquet go back to 1980 just like I don't want to see my phone or computer go back to then either
Here you are being disingenuous and you know it.  The implicit suggestion that allowing S&V to flourish would require to give up technical advances is just not true.  Sports can prescribe parameters for equipment that allow - in fact even further spur - technical advancement while also allowing to keep classic game style.  That said, I agree with you that we are likely not going there, but it is not because we "do not want our phones go back to 1980".

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Post by Born Slippy Sat 16 Jan 2016, 10:35 am

legendkillarV2 wrote:So a slower serve isn't going to equate to a troublesome return or ace is it? So if your Andy, to drop your serve down that much suggests no just protecting a second serve, but the confidence in being able to hold his own in a rally. He doesn't have a kick serve or a spin serve. It's a flat serve he has.

I don't think Sampras would have a shot in for Wimbledon. Passing shots would kill him. He wouldn't change his mindset as he did state in an interview he would still charge. The timing players now have to pick a shot makes the S&V approach more suicidal. His serve would thrive, but would the best returners get a read on it? Now how his baseline game would stack up (yes it isn't an expansive baseline game) he has the FH and a dependable BH.

Looking at Djokovic. Seriously how do you beat the guy? There are no freebies unless you put on a 90% first serve in clinic ala Karlovic/Isner. I'd go for a Lendl approach and if I can't hit winners, I'll just hit ball at him instead! Git!

Murray's slower serve tends to be hit with slice - he usually uses it as a change up out wide in the deuce court. Of course a slower serve carries more risk but a 110mph serve obviously carries less risk than an 80 mph second serve.

Obviously no way I can prove how Sampras would do nowadays but I see no reason why SV wouldn't still work at Wimbledon, behind his serve. 20 players won more than 90% service games on grass last year. Have to think a top server like Sampras with his net skills would be nearly unplayable for anyone outside the top 4. I see no reason why today's players would be any better at getting any form of read on his serve. His baseline skills combined with a very good slice would give him a shot at getting enough breaks. I'm convinced he would be right in the mix.

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Post by Born Slippy Sat 16 Jan 2016, 10:38 am

Great match between Troicki and Dimitrov. Dimitrov breaks back for 5-5 in the 3rd (helped by a bit of a Troicki choke) and now leads 6-5. Massive pressure on Troicki.

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Post by Born Slippy Sat 16 Jan 2016, 11:02 am

Simply wonderful final set between Dimitrov and Troicki. Troicki takes it in the final set tiebreak. Saved match point with a great volley at the end of a 27 shot rally and then pulled off an extraordinary pass to finally take it. If that's a guide to the season we're going to have it will be a good one.

Felt Troicki just about deserved it. He was the more willing to go forwards - Dimi's backhand pass remains a real weakness (Troicki was willing to just push the ball into it and come forward knowing he would probably get an error). That may also hurt Dimi quite a bit going into Oz.

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Post by LuvSports! Sat 16 Jan 2016, 11:17 am

Born Slippy wrote:
legendkillarV2 wrote:So a slower serve isn't going to equate to a troublesome return or ace is it? So if your Andy, to drop your serve down that much suggests no just protecting a second serve, but the confidence in being able to hold his own in a rally. He doesn't have a kick serve or a spin serve. It's a flat serve he has.

I don't think Sampras would have a shot in for Wimbledon. Passing shots would kill him. He wouldn't change his mindset as he did state in an interview he would still charge. The timing players now have to pick a shot makes the S&V approach more suicidal. His serve would thrive, but would the best returners get a read on it? Now how his baseline game would stack up (yes it isn't an expansive baseline game) he has the FH and a dependable BH.

Looking at Djokovic. Seriously how do you beat the guy? There are no freebies unless you put on a 90% first serve in clinic ala Karlovic/Isner. I'd go for a Lendl approach and if I can't hit winners, I'll just hit ball at him instead! Git!

Murray's slower serve tends to be hit with slice - he usually uses it as a change up out wide in the deuce court. Of course a slower serve carries more risk but a 110mph serve obviously carries less risk than an 80 mph second serve.

Obviously no way I can prove how Sampras would do nowadays but I see no reason why SV wouldn't still work at Wimbledon, behind his serve. 20 players won more than 90% service games on grass last year. Have to think a top server like Sampras with his net skills would be nearly unplayable for anyone outside the top 4. I see no reason why today's players would be any better at getting any form of read on his serve. His baseline skills combined with a very good slice would give him a shot at getting enough breaks. I'm convinced he would be right in the mix.

How did Hewitt do vs Sampras? Schooled him at times. Strings these days would make it v v v hard to be at the top. Sampras today would be a different player as he would be on the baseline a lot more as if he was at net he would be picked off. Look at the passing shots they do these days.

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Post by bogbrush Sat 16 Jan 2016, 11:21 am

Troicki is shockingly boring. Just a ball basher. Takes zero initiative in rallies, just rallies for an error.

Everything that's wrong with modern hard court tennis.
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Post by temporary21 Sat 16 Jan 2016, 1:12 pm

Somewhat true. Also though hes 22 in the rankings. The better players are taking more initiative these days

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Post by socal1976 Sat 16 Jan 2016, 11:36 pm

summerblues wrote:
socal1976 wrote:You seem to be missing the part of the equation that the word "should" involves huge wholesale changes to the game that would drastically alter the sport at the highest levels to things we have never seen since the introduction of the graphite racquet.
I do not think I am missing that part.  In some sense that is exactly my point.  You say going back would require huge changes from where we are.  Which is just about the same as admitting that where we are is hugely different from where tennis used to be.  And I liked the old style far better.

Look, in some sense I do not have any beef with what you are saying.  You effectively say something like "yes, tennis has changed a lot, and you can take it or leave it, it is not going back".  Which is fair enough.  I have bigger problem with those who like to twist and turn and talk about how today's tennis allows for variety of styles, and are reluctant to admit that it is far far more uniform than it used to be in the old days.

socal1976 wrote:Call me a creature of my times but I don't want to see the racquet go back to 1980 just like I don't want to see my phone or computer go back to then either
Here you are being disingenuous and you know it.  The implicit suggestion that allowing S&V to flourish would require to give up technical advances is just not true.  Sports can prescribe parameters for equipment that allow - in fact even further spur - technical advancement while also allowing to keep classic game style.  That said, I agree with you that we are likely not going there, but it is not because we "do not want our phones go back to 1980".
Well, here is my issue you guys aren't basing your ideas on a sound technical footing of the impact on the game. 1. You LK and others who put forward your position still dance around the logical consequences of your ideas. Not one person addresses the serving issues and how already it is historically very difficult to return and break

2. To bring back S and V viability not dominance you have to neuter the modern ground stroke, you have to take significant Mphs and Rpms off of both Fhs and backhands because that is the principal reason players approached the net in the heyday of tennis. You simply against a world class athlete could not finish points with a short fh as easy as coming to the net. A short Fh is both high reward and low risk. Volleying is high reward and high risk. So unless you change that fundamental equation and make a short fh low risk and low reward 90 percent of the tour will chose not to rush in fifty or sixty times in a match. When I call you guys illogical, nostalgic, and utopian this is what I mean. I mean you paint this beautiful picture of all styles working equally well etc. do you honestly, think without Luxi strings and modern racquets Stan wawrinka is going to be blasting 20 or 30 winners in match with his one handed backhand and be able to hit 100 miles per hour on a one handed backy?

You guys only talk about this ideal you remember 20 years ago. You fail to tell people the obvious to get there you have to pull sixth gear out of the Nadal fh, the fed fh, the wawrinka backhand, the gazza backhand, the djokovic backhand pass etc. in your bizarro world only cake and sunshine happens if we would only give up what we have and bring back a style that was dying on its own since the mid 80s. So at least be honest and logical with both the pluses and minuses. You want S and V and to get you are more than happy taking ten to 15 miles per hour out of the modern groundstroke.  Say goodbye to JMDP style Fh and wawrinka style Bh, so you can watch the style you prefer. There is no perfect world were you can have your cake and eat it to.

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Post by summerblues Sun 17 Jan 2016, 12:35 am

socal1976 wrote:So at least be honest and logical with both the pluses and minuses. You want S and V and to get you are more than happy taking ten to 15 miles per hour out of the modern groundstroke.
But I thought I was honest about it.  I told you a couple of posts ago:

summerblues wrote:Yes, I would obviously give up some of today's groundies for S&V.  [...]  I realize you cannot quite have both, and I definitely prefer less power and more variety.

As I said already, I do not really think I am in that much disagreement with you.  In spite of your sometimes colorful and OTT presentation, I think your views on this are quite sensible.  If the conversation was just between you and I, I imagine we would come to a reasonably close agreement along these lines:

1.  Yes, today's tennis is quite different from tennis in the 80s.
2.  Tennis in those old days gave far more opportunity to S&V, and it did allow both baseline and S&V to survive well, and also allowed (and called for) more varied skill set.
3.  At the same time, the old tennis did not lend itself to anywhere near the same quality of baseline game, and while today's tennis does not place as much emphasis on variety, it does require a higher level of athleticism to succeed.
4.  While the differences between the tennis of yesteryear and the current edition are fairly pronounced, it is still true that tennis was - and still is - a game in which both athleticism on one hand, and hand-eye coordination and touch/feel on the other hand play important roles, albeit the relative weights of those skills shifted over time.

We would then disagree on our preferences - I prefer the older version and you prefer the later edition.  But as beauty lies in the eye of the beholder, we would both agree that that is fair enough.

And all would be well.

To the extent my description above agrees with your views reasonably well, I do not think we really have much substantive disagreement at all.  I have more disagreement with those who try to obfuscate the fact that tennis did change, that it calls for (or at least allows) less variety than in the past, and that the players who are winning now do not necessarily have the skill set that would make them tops in the old days (but also, obviously, vice versa).

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Post by socal1976 Sun 17 Jan 2016, 5:26 pm

summerblues wrote:
socal1976 wrote:So at least be honest and logical with both the pluses and minuses. You want S and V and to get you are more than happy taking ten to 15 miles per hour out of the modern groundstroke.
But I thought I was honest about it.  I told you a couple of posts ago:

summerblues wrote:Yes, I would obviously give up some of today's groundies for S&V.  [...]  I realize you cannot quite have both, and I definitely prefer less power and more variety.

As I said already, I do not really think I am in that much disagreement with you.  In spite of your sometimes colorful and OTT presentation, I think your views on this are quite sensible.  If the conversation was just between you and I, I imagine we would come to a reasonably close agreement along these lines:

1.  Yes, today's tennis is quite different from tennis in the 80s.
2.  Tennis in those old days gave far more opportunity to S&V, and it did allow both baseline and S&V to survive well, and also allowed (and called for) more varied skill set.
3.  At the same time, the old tennis did not lend itself to anywhere near the same quality of baseline game, and while today's tennis does not place as much emphasis on variety, it does require a higher level of athleticism to succeed.
4.  While the differences between the tennis of yesteryear and the current edition are fairly pronounced, it is still true that tennis was - and still is - a game in which both athleticism on one hand, and hand-eye coordination and touch/feel on the other hand play important roles, albeit the relative weights of those skills shifted over time.

We would then disagree on our preferences - I prefer the older version and you prefer the later edition.  But as beauty lies in the eye of the beholder, we would both agree that that is fair enough.

And all would be well.

To the extent my description above agrees with your views reasonably well, I do not think we really have much substantive disagreement at all.  I have more disagreement with those who try to obfuscate the fact that tennis did change, that it calls for (or at least allows) less variety than in the past, and that the players who are winning now do not necessarily have the skill set that would make them tops in the old days (but also, obviously, vice versa).
Well I do appreciate that you unlike some do at least acknowledge that yes the modern groundstroke winner blasts would have to be tuned down to get what you want. But again my point is that is not how variety is sold. Variety is sold as these changes helping everyone succeed. It isn't it is about saving a dying tactical approach at the detriment of the modern power baseline game.


I disagree though that both baseline play and volleying was equally valid in tennis of old. No the game because of dodgy grass courts and wood racquets was hugely dominated s and v and even baseline players like Borg or Connors were coming to the net to finish once they had the edge established from their baseline shots. The first guy to principally dominate by hitting winners from the back was Lendl. Before that even the baseliners were forced to finish at net. The 80s itself was unique and a transitional period, because the new racquets still hadn't been refined to let you finish with a fh as easy as today. For most of tennis history either power baseline has dominated or s and v, the period were both thrived was a tiny sliver of tennis history with a mix of conditions unlikely to be recreated. Most likely you will have a game dominated by one or the other, and I know which I prefer.

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Post by summerblues Sun 17 Jan 2016, 10:37 pm

socal1976 wrote:I disagree though that both baseline play and volleying was equally valid in tennis of old. No the game because of dodgy grass courts and wood racquets was hugely dominated s and v and even baseline players like Borg or Connors were coming to the net to finish once they had the edge established from their baseline shots.
First, I did not say they were entirely equally valid - just that players could be successful with both styles.  Also, Connors and Borg may have had to come to the net to finish off the points, but they were baseliners and they were both able to be dominant and #1.  All the way from when tennis went pro through the late 80s and - to a lesser extent - even 90s, one could become #1 playing either S&V or from the baseline.

Not anymore.

Anyway, I think you and I got about as far as we will go with this.  We prefer different styles, but you do not go around pretending that current tennis allows diverse styles to succeed, so I really do not have too much to argue with you about.

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Post by socal1976 Mon 18 Jan 2016, 4:51 am

summerblues wrote:
socal1976 wrote:I disagree though that both baseline play and volleying was equally valid in tennis of old. No the game because of dodgy grass courts and wood racquets was hugely dominated s and v and even baseline players like Borg or Connors were coming to the net to finish once they had the edge established from their baseline shots.
First, I did not say they were entirely equally valid - just that players could be successful with both styles.  Also, Connors and Borg may have had to come to the net to finish off the points, but they were baseliners and they were both able to be dominant and #1.  All the way from when tennis went pro through the late 80s and - to a lesser extent - even 90s, one could become #1 playing either S&V or from the baseline.

Not anymore.

Anyway, I think you and I got about as far as we will go with this.  We prefer different styles, but you do not go around pretending that current tennis allows diverse styles to succeed, so I really do not have too much to argue with you about.

For a guy who doesn't have much to argue you sure argue a lot.

1. Most likely tennis isn't going to be a perfect storm where all styles are equally chanced to win

2. 98 percent of tennis history either S and V has dominated or power baseline very small period in the early life span of a graphite racquet both were able to thrive each prevalent on their favored conditions

3. Borg and Connors compared to today's players are net rushers, and they hit their Fhs like my granny. Watch a Borg match next time and count how many winners he hit from the baseline or even within a yard inside unless the other guy rushed the net. In a match I am not kidding he might not have a single winner from that range unless a passing shot. If Borg and Connors played with the same ratio of net approaches today they would be classed as Lopez or Stepanakert level volleyers. So we agree you want S and V domination, and that is what many proponents of widespread change won't say. They call it variety. No it's s And v domination and the death of power baseline they want. It can not be a have your cake and eat it to scenario.

4. If choosing between S and V tennis and modern power baseline, I can guarantee you that most fans, most advertisers, most sponsors, and most of the owners will all go power baseline favoring than s and V. why, well one is their preference of more bang for the buck in lengthier exchanges of all involved. Another is that   S and V is great in small doses. People today crave it because of the old grass is always greener on the other side nature of humanity. Most people if they had it again after a few years would again clamor for a change back. Why a huge number of points end within a few seconds on very repetitive points. You think today's 20 shot baseline rally is repetitive wait till you see matches consisting of a hundred points that involve big serve followed by routine put away or over head on the first ball. Or just an ace or unreturnable serve over and over again. Sure you get those exhilarating hand to hand exchanges at net where both guys are at the net. You get the starling diving full extension drop volley. But those are real few and real far between. A tour of Gus with Fhs like my granny no huge Bh winners and a bunch of one and two shot rallies. That is about as interesting as arching old people fccuk.


At least you are honest you want the death of power baseline tennis at the expense of S and V domination, those that sell us variety, really want what you want but won't say it that way. You can't simultaneously make a slate of changes all in favor of short point net rushing while claiming these changes will help every style thrive, which is how this is always sold to us.

socal1976

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Join date : 2011-03-18
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