PDA

View Full Version : The best rivalries of recent times?


laurie
02-15-2005, 02:43 AM
Which rivalries have given you most enjoyment and why? There have been many over the years and could bes some developing this year baring injuries. I'll give you my favourites:

Sampras v Agassi - lasted 14 years and out of 34 meetings- 16 were finals all over the world. Thats a lot. Plus, here in England Andrew Castle said the Aussie final, he hadn't seen ball striking by two men since Sampras Agassi in the mid 1990s. Remember 1995? They played eachother in 2 slam finals plus supernine finals in Indian Wells, Miami and Canada. The other thing I liked about their rivalry was the last match. It summed it up, 4 sets no tiebreaks. Bar the 2001 US Open match they hardly played tiebreaks. They annihilated eachother. For instance, 1993 Wimbledon quarters, Sampras wins first two sets 6:2, 6:2..then Agassi wins next two 6:3, 6:3...and then 3 breaks in the fifth! with Sampras coming out on top.

Rafter v Agassi - that was one hell of a rivalry especailly at slams. They always played five setters!

Serena Willams v Capriati - they always meet in the quarters of slams!

Becker v Lendl - I'm not sure they liked eacother! They played hard!

Rafter v Sampras - Now they didn't like eachother much! Rafter always gave everything!

Becker v Sampras - they played great matches indoors.

Graf v Sanchez Vicario - great matches at Wimbledon!

Hewitt v Federer - Federer has the edge at the moment but they played great matches from 2002 Shanghai Masters to 2004 Wimbledon and I'm sure will play great matches in the future.

What rivalries can you guys come up with?

BLiND
02-15-2005, 03:41 AM
I wouldn't call Hewitt/Federer a great reivalry... Federer copes with Hewitt to easily... Safin/Federer is more like it!

Camilio Pascual
02-15-2005, 03:50 AM
Evert vs. Navratilova - The 2 greatest over a span of many years and many matches, this may be the greatest rivalry of all, except for...
Rosewall vs. Laver - A close look at their complete careers and you may be wondering if Rod is the greatest, after all.
Serena v. Jennifer is my favourite current one.
The 2 most intense rivalries:
Rios vs. Rios - Rios finally dominated Rios to the point of his retirement.
Safin vs. Safin - After an early win years ago and then a string of losses, Safin is currently winning that one.

AndrewD
02-15-2005, 04:40 AM
Camilio,
great call on the Laver/Rosewall rivalry. Guess it shows, nomatter how great you are there's always one guy you dont match up well to (helps when you're a left hander naturally hitting to a backhand like Rosewall's LOL)
Evert vs Navratilova - the benchmark
Becker vs Edberg
Lendl vs McEnroe
Lendl vs Connors
Safin vs Rochus or Santoro (he just seems to hate playing those little guys but its very entertaining, although not advisable if you dislike violence against racquets)
Serena vs Sharapova (although I hate watching them play: listening to them is even worse lol)

Serve-And-Volley
02-15-2005, 04:49 AM
I think Evert and Navratilova, Safin and Federer, Sampras and Agassi, along with my favorite Connors and McEnroe. Those are just a few I love to watch.

LordRaceR
02-15-2005, 04:55 AM
Seles VS Graf
Becker VS Edberg

my fav match ups

Aykhan Mammadov
02-15-2005, 05:03 AM
I can't tell that there is rivalry between Federer and Safin or between Fed and anybody else. It may begin, but at the moment Fed has been much stronger than his opponents.

verdasco67
02-15-2005, 05:07 AM
Sampras vs Agassi
Federer vs Safin

These two mathcups might not be the "best" rivalries of all time...but i like it when they play each other... you'll always get your moneys worth!!! :)

TheNatural
02-15-2005, 05:11 AM
Federer beat everyone last year but lost a fair few times in 2003.If you only consider lasy year , he has no rivals, but rivalries span longer periods than just 1 year. Some of opponents have to win a few more before it becomes a rivalry. He's won the last 6 versus hewitt, last 5 vs Agassi, won the previous 3 before he lost against Safin. he's 3-6 against henman but won the last 2, and he's 2-5 against Nalbandian but won the last 2, so you could say he has a rivalry with those 2 guys and he has a score to settle.

Theres a bit of a rivalry between Safin and Hewitt, they've each won 2 in a row for their last 10 matches. Now it's Hewitt's turn to win the next 2.

Edberg and Lendl had a great rivalry. I remember that -I was supporting Lendl, but Edberg kept beating him in all the last slams they played.

davey25
02-15-2005, 06:34 AM
Here are mine:

Graf vs Seles-would have been so much better if Seles wasnt stabbed. Was only starting to heat up in early 93.

Graf vs Sanchez V-Sanchez V is not nearly as talented but made it a battle through shear will, persistance, and hunger to succeed.

Navratilova vs Evert-the best of the best.

Sampras vs Agassi-didnt like their matches but a great rivalry.

Federer vs Agassi-They still have some very close matches and remember Agassi has won 2 of their meetings.

Safin vs Federer-I think this will the future rivalry of the game.


The most overlooked:

Sampras vs Krajicek-this guy was a total nemisis to Pete. He actually lead their head to head. He was the only guy to beat Pete at Wimbledon during his 8 year streak and won the title that year. They are definitely rivals.

Nadal vs Hewitt-Omigod, these guys produce so many incredable matches. Hewitt has had to pull out the best tennis of his career to beat Nadal.

Camilio Pascual
02-15-2005, 07:28 AM
AndrewD - Thanks. Benchmark is the perfect description for the Evert/Navratilova rivalry, it is tops for the Open Era.

rhubarb
02-15-2005, 07:30 AM
Nadal vs Hewitt-Omigod, these guys produce so many incredable matches. Hewitt has had to pull out the best tennis of his career to beat Nadal.

I think if Lleyton were to take a hyphenated surname, it's more likely to be "Hewitt-Comeon", don't you think?

Nadal is getting closer and closer. Just wait until they play on clay. :)

Camilio Pascual
02-15-2005, 08:26 AM
I just looked up Chrissie's and Martina's records. Martina led 43-37 in their 80 matches. Of those 80 matches, 61 (not a typppo) were finals! Wow!

RoddickRulez
02-15-2005, 08:26 AM
Andy Roddick vs Andre Agassi
Serena vs. Sharapova

Galactus
02-15-2005, 08:52 AM
As of 2005, Federer owns Roddick 8-1 and Safin 6-2: hardly great 'rivalries'...although they could (I hope) all change over the next 5 years.
The best matchup for Federer is Hewitt...on any surface. They have played each other 15 times with Federer leading by one...

RoddickRulez
02-15-2005, 09:02 AM
Hewitt only beat Fed when Fed was younger
From 99-02 Hewitt 6-2
03-present Fed 6-1

Rabbit
02-15-2005, 10:11 AM
AndrewD & Camilio & Davey25, I agree wholeheartedly on the Martina/Chrissie rivalry. We're not likely to see anything that good again. The matches were close and they were blow outs, but they were all memorable for one reason or another.

I also think that shortlived as it was, Borg/McEnroe was an awesome rivalry comprised of epic matches that showcased two players playing as well as anyone ever could with wood.

Rosewall/Laver is also a great call. I remember that there was a guy making the argument, and successfully, that Rosewall was the greatest ever because of his longevity and success.

Finally, Jimmy Connors vs insert name here. Basically anyone he played more than once he had history with. Connors was, IMO, a true warrior or court. He took it to extremes, but then again tennis is theater.

Rickson
02-15-2005, 10:30 AM
Federer/Safin might be a good one to come. Federer will no doubt beat Safin the next time they meet, but if Safin can somehow squeeze out another win within their next 5 meetings, a rivalry will have been born.

davey25
02-17-2005, 01:11 PM
I always like to hear how Martina and Chris talk about each other today. They both have great self confidence yet they talk glowingly of each other as a player and person. I remember Martina at a World Sports Event Awards saying, "if Chris had not been born, or I had not been born she may have won more titles or I may have won more titles, but we would not have been the players we were because we pushed each other throughout our careers." It was such a wonderful statement full of great respect and admiration for one another. Such a contrast to today where wannabees who will never be as great as Martina or Chris diss each other, and claim they play 10% of themselves every match, win or lose(Serena, hello, Serena anyone).

gustavo33
02-17-2005, 02:27 PM
not the best rivaliries, but very good:

guga x safin - they always have great matches
guga x ferrero

Camilio Pascual
02-18-2005, 03:25 AM
I always like to hear how Martina and Chris talk about each other today. They both have great self confidence yet they talk glowingly of each other as a player and person. I remember Martina at a World Sports Event Awards saying, "if Chris had not been born, or I had not been born she may have won more titles or I may have won more titles, but we would not have been the players we were because we pushed each other throughout our careers." It was such a wonderful statement full of great respect and admiration for one another. Such a contrast to today where wannabees who will never be as great as Martina or Chris diss each other, and claim they play 10% of themselves every match, win or lose(Serena, hello, Serena anyone).

VERY nice post and I see your point. But, let's remember the wars are over and they are well over 40 now. Serena is still in the battle and a brash 20-something. Let's not forget the "Martina-hits-bigger-ground-strokes-than-Chrissie" bull that came out of the Navratilova camp one year. It wasn't true, but a great idea to try to plant in Chrissie's head, the point being it wasn't ALL peace and love at the time.

davey25
02-18-2005, 07:10 AM
VERY nice post and I see your point. But, let's remember the wars are over and they are well over 40 now. Serena is still in the battle and a brash 20-something. Let's not forget the "Martina-hits-bigger-ground-strokes-than-Chrissie" bull that came out of the Navratilova camp one year. It wasn't true, but a great idea to try to plant in Chrissie's head, the point being it wasn't ALL peace and love at the time.

Fair enough. I was a baby when there rivalry was at their peak so I may not have as clear an idea what they were really like personality-wise at Martina's zenith, when Chris was trying to hold onto her at an advancing age.
All old footage and chronicles I have seen or read seems to indicate respect, sportsmanship, and class, but you probably dont get a full perspective of the potshots, swipes, snipes, backhanded compliments, that went back and forth.

Rabbit
02-18-2005, 08:16 AM
The clearest memory I have of the really competitive nature of the two was after the finals of the U.S. Open one year. Chris lost a 3-setter, if I remember correctly. She was interviewed on court, which has to be tough to do after a loss like that, and Chris said "I may have lost the match, but I could hear you rooting for me." or words to that effect. Implying, of course, that the crowd was in her corner. Chris was gracious in most of her losses to Martina often saying that Martina "should join the men's tour for some competition", but on this occassion, you could tell that it really got to Evert.

coach
02-18-2005, 08:51 AM
Serena vs Venus.... oops, you wanted the BEST rivalry didn't you. Those two are the antithesis of the term SIBLING RIVALRY.

Camilio Pascual
02-22-2005, 03:52 AM
Serena vs Venus.... oops, you wanted the BEST rivalry didn't you. Those two are the antithesis of the term SIBLING RIVALRY.

Completely true, bad for tennis. But good for them and their parents, which is the more important and meaningful thing.

35ft6
02-22-2005, 04:22 AM
I must admit that for a while I loved watching Rafter play Sampras. Pete was such a freakin' baby in that one. I wish Rafter would have just called it like it was (Pete=wahwah), but he chose the classy route.

joe sch
02-22-2005, 07:24 AM
My fav is Mac vs Connors, maybe the best ever on a tennis court ?

BERDI4
02-22-2005, 11:34 AM
What about Connors (5) - Vilas (4)? They are both exactly the same age, left-handers and retired old.

katarddx
02-22-2005, 06:19 PM
GORAN IVANISEVIC vs. GORAN IVANISEVIC!!!!!!!!!!!!!
and the winner is GORAN IVANISEVIC THE 3RD!

nimxnooj
02-22-2005, 06:27 PM
I' agree with the Safin v. Safin rivalry...He seems to be fighting a demon within wen he plays his matches. But golly, dang, when he's on, he's ON! Favorite player of all time. SAFIN IS THE G.O.A.T.!!! (greatest of all time)

sliceroni
02-22-2005, 07:26 PM
Safin has to consistently make it to the semis and finals of each tournament in order to play Fed, in his recent performance shows he's still incapable of doing it on a regular basis as Fed does. Makes it tough to be a Safin fan, but when they do meet it is potentially the best matchup since Safin is the only person who had frustrate Federer when he's on.

nkhera1
02-22-2005, 07:31 PM
I' agree with the Safin v. Safin rivalry...He seems to be fighting a demon within wen he plays his matches. But golly, dang, when he's on, he's ON! Favorite player of all time. SAFIN IS THE G.O.A.T.!!! (greatest of all time)
to be the G.O.A.T you have to at least be the best of your era