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bluetrain4
04-06-2007, 03:28 PM
All of the Seles-Graf threads inspired me to go watch clips on youtube.

All I can say is that I LOVE watching these three play.

Graf's slice backhand may be the most underrated shot in tennis history, overshadowed, of course, by her forehand. It wasn't a defensive or positoning backhand. She hit it hard and it was fast and low. Very agressive. I can't imagine tying to hit against that. She could pass with it also. Everyone asks why she didn't hit more topspin backhands, because her topspin was good. But, why hit topspin with that slice?

Unprecedented (to this day) foot speed. She looks like a champion boxer. Perfect footwork.

Also, he forehand looks awesome after all these years. Hard and relentless. I always thought it was a great unique shot becauase she used an eastern grip and caught the less out in front than a lot of players. Tough to read.

There's much more, but I only have so much time.

I loved Seles' relentlessness and hitting patterns. she kept the elbows close to her body and created obscene angles, sometimes when the ball was behind her.

It's interesting to watch her hit line to line to line. Her serve is better than I remember. I loved it when she was in perfect position and just slapped at the ball like a slap shot in hockey.

She really got down on the ball, bending her knees and lunging into the ball moving forward. This would be much more difficult for her to sustain today.

I'm really impressed with all of these players with the trunk rotation into the shot. They didn't just arm it.

Sabatini was so great to watch. She hit harder than I remember. Hard, topspin, and she mixed it up a lot. Her high backhand topspin with the wrist flick at the end was sublime.

I know she was mentally weak at times, but her physical game impresses me more than I remember. Great mixure of high shots and low.

Also, from watching these clips, I remember that I can't stand Aranxta SV. Also, Mary Pierce, when she was in the zone was so great to watch. A power player who didn't mess around, didn't pretend she had finesse. Also, love watching Kimiko Date.

Condoleezza
04-06-2007, 03:34 PM
All of the Seles-Graf threads inspired me to go watch clips on youtube.

All I can say is that I LOVE watching these three play.

Graf's slice backhand may be the most underrated shot in tennis history, overshadowed, of course, by her forehand. It wasn't a defensive or positoning backhand. She hit it hard and it was fast and low. Very agressive. I can't imagine tying to hit against that. She could pass with it also. Everyone asks why she didn't hit more topspin backhands, because her topspin was good. But, why hit topspin with that slice?

Unprecedented (to this day) foot speed. She looks like a champion boxer. Perfect footwork.

Also, he forehand looks awesome after all these years. Hard and relentless. I always thought it was a great unique shot becauase she used an eastern grip and caught the less out in front than a lot of players. Tough to read.

There's much more, but I only have so much time.

I loved Seles' relentlessness and hitting patterns. she kept the elbows close to her body and created obscene angles, sometimes when the ball was behind her.

It's interesting to watch her hit line to line to line. Her serve is better than I remember. I loved it when she was in perfect position and just slapped at the ball like a slap shot in hockey.

She really got down on the ball, bending her knees and lunging into the ball moving forward. This would be much more difficult for her to sustain today.

I'm really impressed with all of these players with the trunk rotation into the shot. They didn't just arm it.

Sabatini was so great to watch. She hit harder than I remember. Hard, topspin, and she mixed it up a lot. Her high backhand topspin with the wrist flick at the end was sublime.

I know she was mentally weak at times, but her physical game impresses me more than I remember. Great mixure of high shots and low.

Also, from watching these clips, I remember that I can't stand Aranxta SV. Also, Mary Pierce, when she was in the zone was so great to watch. A power player who didn't mess around, didn't pretend she had finesse. Also, love watching Kimiko Date.


Indeed, those were the times.
And don't forget Novotna!
BTW, ASV was great when she was in-form.

Condi

bluetrain4
04-06-2007, 03:45 PM
Indeed, those were the times.
And don't forget Novotna!
BTW, ASV was great when she was in-form.

Condi

Yeah, ASV had her moments. I think I'm biased against her because she lacked big shots, and would beat the aforementioned players (who I liked better) on occasion. But you have to give it to her. Great defense, great retreiving skills, great passing shots, and she could volley.

Novatna, last of the great serve and volleyers. Can't forget her.

Mid career Conchita Martinez was also fun to watch

laurie
04-06-2007, 03:56 PM
It was a great era for sure for womens tennis.

Under the circumstances of slower surfaces all round I consider Amelie Mauresmo to be a great serve and volleyer today. Two Wimbledon semis and one title in the last 3 years says it all. And she's the only top player to serve and volley at least 75% of the time on grass today.

bluetrain4
04-07-2007, 12:20 AM
I've watched even more clips and have to say there were a lot of good players during that era.

Capriati was awesome before she went astray. Natasha Zverva, although destroyed by Graf in the French Final, was a real talent who was a joy to watch when she was on.

Even players like Amanda Coetzer, Dominique Van Roost, Caterina Endqvist, and Manuela Maleeva were way more interesting to watch than players today.

Larissa Savchenko anyone?

Condoleezza
04-07-2007, 12:36 AM
I've watched even more clips and have to say there were a lot of good players during that era.

Capriati was awesome before she went astray. Natasha Zverva, although destroyed by Graf in the French Final, was a real talent who was a joy to watch when she was on.

Even players like Amanda Coetzer, Dominique Van Roost, Caterina Endqvist, and Manuela Maleeva were way more interesting to watch than players today.

Larissa Savchenko anyone?

Savchenko-Neiland player a great semi against Graf at the 88 Olympics, was a break up in the third set. Almost prevented Graf from winning the Golden Grand Slam. A S&V player, too.

Condi

PS: You mean Katarina LINDquist? I'd place her more in the 80ies than in the 90ies, though.

bluetrain4
04-07-2007, 12:50 AM
Yeah, Katarina Lindquist. Thanks for the correction. Just one of many players who have popped into my head today.

Just one more: Mary Joe Fernandez had some game. Not enough game to win a Slam (almost), but good to watch against the right opponent.

Condoleezza
04-07-2007, 01:42 AM
Yeah, Katarina Lindquist. Thanks for the correction. Just one of many players who have popped into my head today.

Just one more: Mary Joe Fernandez had some game. Not enough game to win a Slam (almost), but good to watch against the right opponent.

MJF played at her best in the FO 93 final against Graf, was one break up in the third set (at 4-3).

But there were many even greater slam finals in the 90ies, those being the most spectacular:

Seles-Graf, FO 92 (voted greatest open era slam final by journalists in 99)
Graf-Novotna, Wimbledon 93 (the tears)
Graf-ASV, Wimbledon 95 (the famous 11th game in the third set)
Graf-Seles, USO 95 (Seles's return, Pa Graf just thrown into the slammer)
Graf-Hingis, FO 99 (voted greatest open era slam final by fans in 99)

Fans will talk of these classics even in 20 years from now.
In this decade we only have Venus-Davenport, Wimbledon 05. Everything else is already forgotten ...

Condi

bluetrain4
04-07-2007, 02:22 AM
MJF played at her best in the FO 93 final against Graf, was one break up in the third set (at 4-3).

But there were many even greater slam finals in the 90ies, those being the most spectacular:

Seles-Graf, FO 92 (voted greatest open era slam final by journalists in 99)
Graf-Novotna, Wimbledon 93 (the tears)
Graf-ASV, Wimbledon 95 (the famous 11th game in the third set)
Graf-Seles, USO 95 (Seles's return, Pa Graf just thrown into the slammer)
Graf-Hingis, FO 99 (voted greatest open era slam final by fans in 99)

Fans will talk of these classics even in 20 years from now.
In this decade we only have Venus-Davenport, Wimbledon 05. Everything else is already forgotten ...

Condi

I generally agree that most everything else from this era is forgotten, except maybe Hingis-Capriati, when Hingis had 4 match points.

bluetrain4
04-07-2007, 02:23 AM
That was Hingis-Capriati in the Australian Open Final BTW.

laurie
04-07-2007, 02:40 AM
In that era, many players knew how to construct points - I also enjoyed watching Chanda Rubin, I think she could have ben a very good player without all those injuries - maybe even a slam contender.

If I think of today's girls who are good at constructing points, Anna Chakvetadze is a real throwback to the 1990s - her favourite player is Mary Pierce - she even looks and walks like her - like Mary's younger sister. Anna plays very smart and is not a power player. Svetlana Kuzntesova is working hard to expand her game - she no longer hits drive volleys and looks to hit conventional volleys at all times. She also looks to serve and volley once a game and has been looking to hit more one handed slices. These improvements to her game should manifest themselves well in 2 years and she will still be only 23 by then.

Of course Amelie and Justine construct points as well as anyone. Now Serena has really cut down on her unforced errors - she claims her new racquet gives her the control she requires - I wish she switched to a control racquet long ago but better late than never for sure. Players like Tatiana Golovin, Patty Schnyder and Sybille Bammer also concentrate heavily on point construction. Jelena Jankovic is till improving.

The girsl who still hit out like there's no tomorrow right now? Defintitely Kim Clijsters - she never improved her control side of her game - her unforced error count in a match is always high and is one of the reasons she hardly ever beats Amelie or Justine these days. I woud really like to see both Ana Ivanovic and Nicole Vaidisova really add more control to their games - both girls still get carried away and don't play within themselves - I hope that will change as they mature.

So actually, the top 30 of the womens game is a mixture now - it's no longer just all about power.

bluetrain4
04-07-2007, 02:47 AM
Schnyder is someone from this era who I actually like watching, at least when she is playing well. Her and Mauresmo used to have great matches.

But, she's a partial head case and can't seem ever to put it all together for a sustained run. But, to her credit she's been to a couple of Slam QFs and a SF.

CEvertFan
04-13-2007, 07:12 PM
Yeah, ASV had her moments. I think I'm biased against her because she lacked big shots, and would beat the aforementioned players (who I liked better) on occasion. But you have to give it to her. Great defense, great retreiving skills, great passing shots, and she could volley.


ASV had outstanding retreiving skills and that one element of her game would give Graf fits because Steffi would time and again think she had the point won, but would have to hit at least another shot, and many times more than one in order to win the point. I've seen most of their matches and there were times when Graf lost patience and started going for too much and making errors instead of winners. This also happened to a lesser degree with Amanda Coetzer against Graf.

bluetrain4
04-13-2007, 09:38 PM
ASV had outstanding retreiving skills and that one element of her game would give Graf fits because Steffi would time and again think she had the point won, but would have to hit at least another shot, and many times more than one in order to win the point. I've seen most of their matches and there were times when Graf lost patience and started going for too much and making errors instead of winners. This also happened to a lesser degree with Amanda Coetzer against Graf.


Yeah, Coetzer was an unbelievable mover who could make anyone frustrated. Glad you mentioned her.

Condoleezza
04-14-2007, 02:12 AM
Yeah, Coetzer was an unbelievable mover who could make anyone frustrated. Glad you mentioned her.

Coetzer beat Graf four times.
First was in August 1995, 2 weeks after Graf's dad had been imprisoned.
Second was at AO 1996 when Graf was full of antibiotics and went down in the Australian heat.
Third and fourth were in May 1997 just weeks/days before Graf's knee fell apart (had reconstructive knee sugery at end of May) which virtually ended her career.
Undisputable facts.

Graf usually beat Coetzer 6-2 6-1 or so.


Condi