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View Full Version : reason for borg's decline in senior tennis


paolo2143
06-17-2009, 11:26 AM
there were several factors that made borg so good in his prime and most of them were related to his physical attributes and mental strength rather than natural ability or talent unlike mcenroe.If you watch some of borg's old matches on you tube such as pepsi grand slam clash with connors or wimbledon matches with mcenroe or french open v lendl ,vilas,pecci and gerualitis what stands out is his amazing speed and agility arround the court,his stamina as he never even seemed to draw breath,his incredible ability to win the big points and the fact that compared to thers he made so few unforced errors during rallies and finally he had an aura about him that i don't think even sampras or federer even had.


There is no doubt in my mind that connors,mcenroe and some othere had much more natural talent and purer shots but borg more than compensated for this with his other attributes.I agree watching him in the seniors is like watching a diffrent player he is totally unrecognisable as the player he once was maybe due to not having as much natural ability as some others,most of the physical attributes no longer being as important or helpful and also having taken such a long break from tennis for nearly 10 years at one point in time, wheras a much more naturally gifted player like mcenroe has still been able to play to a decent standard.

Tennis Dunce
06-17-2009, 12:13 PM
He quit...yes, I said it...QUIT tennis because he couldn't bear being number 2.:oops:

He says he burnt out, and he probably did.

I don't think he likes playing tennis still...to this day...but they pay him lotsa cold cash.

Borgforever
06-17-2009, 12:39 PM
Björn Borg hates his popularity to a large degree. He's sick of hearing how "invincible" he was -- seeing all those admiring "empty stares" and "frozen smiles" because he thinks he just an ordinary dude -- and no one deserves to be so worshipped.

The hysteria and it's inevitable isolation made him tired of the whole deal. He's one of those guys who dislikes attention -- especially on an insane level.

He always refer to his fame "as a serious problem" or "an enormous drag". He always gives you an incredulous stare "See?!" when people start to react around him. Swedes generally leave him alone -- partly because he got a truckload of bad press some of the time (a fact he likes since that decreases his popularity). He would prefer to be completely unknown. The hassles with this "problem" was his biggest hurdle. Add the cramped, jam-packed playing schedule to this and you've got the nitro and the glycerine in a great combo.

Peolpe always seem to underestimate the problems with being the most famous man on the planet. Few have known how it is. Chaplin, Elvis, Michael Jackson...

Death-threats, people chasing you always, assaulting you, scheming around you, the flashbulbs always, always, always...

It's uncontrolled madness around you 24/7. If you're a down to earth guy -- that's not a good thing...

If his fame was less I'm certain -- and many around him -- that he woud've gone on (also providing that he didn't do any exxos -- which today is almost obsolete)...

He lives now a very subdued life and you would be shocked to witness the simplicity. Yes, sometimes he shows up in something resembling great style. But that's not often.

He cared so much for winning that when the burnout happened winning wasn't anything that held any attraction for him anymore. Been there, done that. Crushed everybody. Had every streak. Stunned even himself. What else is there? Go on? Give one good reason for him to continue under such problematic circumstances?

Borg feel tired of the image transmitted of him as the invincible and who can blame him for that. That's why you never hear him say (like he did back in the day) "I don't care if it's my parents I'm playing against -- I'm going to win this match" -- therefore you don't see that "fire" anymore. You have to a be shameless extrovert to like his situation and in a way it's too bad he wasn't that type. A lot of people have opinions about him without knowing one iota about his situation and life...

Tennis Dunce
06-17-2009, 12:56 PM
People say that he deserted tennis, and there was indeed a void, an immense vacuum in his absence. But he didn't owe anybody anything.

Neil Peart, the great drummer, said once that he doesn't owe anybody a damn thing...except his absolute best performance 100% of the time.

Once Borg stepped off the court for good, tennis felt that he cheated them. We were all deprived of his greatness and a lot of us still hold that against him unfortunately.

Like football fans who never got to see Bo Jackson run because of that hip injury...feeling cheated. It truly sucks...but life sucks sometimes.

Mick
06-17-2009, 12:58 PM
probably because borg's game relied more heavily on his quickness than mcenroe's or connors' game. so, when he lost his quickness due to age, his game suffered more.

!Tym
06-17-2009, 12:58 PM
...in other words, he's a classic ISFP.

rod99
06-17-2009, 01:28 PM
borg himself described his game in his prime as "a young person's game". his best skills are going to naturally decline with age.

Devilito
06-17-2009, 01:31 PM
Any athlete that says they didn’t want the fame needs to STFU. The only reason your *** is making $1,500,000 for winning the US open and another $100,000,000,000,000 in sponsorship money is because you are an ENTERNAINER. People watch you play tennis the same way they watch a stage actor in a play or an actor in a movie. The fame goes with your career choice. If there was no fame associated with tennis you would be lucky to make $1000 for winning a tennis tournament.

If you don’t want the fame then go bang a hammer at a construction job or get an education and be an engineer or something. He wines about the fame while in Miami with some hooker driving his stupid yellow Bentley that was flown in from Monaco. Lick-my-nuts.

cork_screw
06-17-2009, 01:46 PM
Funny thing is that even when he was younger at the height of his career he retired at a very young age (25 years old). When he reconsidered his retirement and got back into the game, the game completely changed. Nobody was using wood racquets anymore. He tried to compete a few matches with his wood racquet lost all those matches, then tried to switch over to the graphites and aluminums and lost those matches as well. There's a crazy statistic that he didn't win a single match after his retirement after making the switch with racquets and i guess playing against guys using different equipment also was a big factor in that as well. But he was one of the best and a lot of people say he had more speed than rafa today.

Borgforever
06-17-2009, 02:33 PM
Fame goes with success in a big sport -- Borg had never any problems with that fact. If he was as famous as Jimbo or Mac he would've very likely gone on but it wasn't just fame or even great fame -- it was insane, sickening, never be let alone fame -- right around you while you needed to perform on a top level. That's incredibly tough and straining.

Don't confuse Sampras' or Federer's fame with Borg's. They don't compare at all. Completely different...

And Borg didn't take his "comeback" so seriously as the papers did. Physically when he was 34 he was, well over, his speed wasn't at all what is was and had the seniors tour (that Jimbo started) existed then he would've jumped on that train -- so what to do when he wanted to play a little again?

Of course his rep (which he hated) made it out like he was gunning for No. 1 again. What a joke. Only the truly ignorant swallows that hype...

Borgforever
06-17-2009, 03:39 PM
And I'll say this -- Borg has great respect for his tennis fans. If a fan asks for an autograph he usually if not always complies happily. The tennis fans were never the problem he says. It was the media, the nut-cases, the star-fu*kers, the people who wormed themselves close to him -- not because they appreciated his game -- just because he was the most famous man on the planet and they wanted to sunbathe in his glow...

In front of tennis fans (at RG or Wimby) he feels humble and grateful. He likes them because he's also just a manic tennis fan. But the other stuff, away from the immediate tennis, the backside...

Borg doesn't like to talk about this since he didn't like to put himself up as, well, blowing his own horn, but when he was active he felt it very, very important to give time to his fans. An amazing amount in fact. Most notably he took a lot of time especially to actually go and surprise-visit his young fans who were unlucky enough to be staying at a hospital, being sick.

Everyone needs cheering up -- especially young people in hospitals...

I come to think of how Steve McQueen traveled around to poor neighborhoods in between movie-shoots placing out baseball-mitts and bats and all sorts of sports-stuff in the parks. So the kids can have something cool to do. Steve also refused to mention this or would sue anyone who wrote about it. McQueen even organized a relief of roughly a mill out of his own pocket for earthquake-victims when that occurred -- among other things...

Say what you will about these people -- but that is heart...

gpt
06-17-2009, 04:49 PM
I think all of Borgforever's points are valid. But what about today's racquets. When Borg attempted a comeback in 1990 he chose to play with wooden racquets. That seems crazy in hindsight. But I think it says something significant.

Tennis with wooden racquets was a different game. Borg was a master at consructing a point during a long rally, in order to create an error from his opponent or force him to take a risk. Like coming in to the net where Bjorn could pass or lob him.

Bjorn Borg played chess in comparison to today's pro tennis.

Borgforever
06-17-2009, 05:02 PM
True -- but Borg started to up the ante on his game in the early 80s and particularly in 1982 (check out the AKAI-clips) you see Borg hitting more instant winners from the baseline on returns, in rallies, well from anywhere.

He had a reinforced Donnay-racquet, which was even more graphite-like, without actually be graphite, which allowed better control, precision and power which is seen instantly. Borg also makes mincemeat out of Mac's serve here on the return -- FINALLY -- doing what Lendl and Jimbo had done for years already -- returning Mac's serve from the baseline instead of standing in the fifteenth row in the stands to receive...

And the result is clear. Borg always had lightning-reflexes, sorry, cobra-reflexes :-)

Too bad we never got to see Björn Borg 2.0 with the new sword at RG, Wimby, USO and Kooyong -- as fast as always and more deadly...

Remember at AKAI -- Borg beat Lendl 6-1, 6-4, 6-2 -- when Lendl was unbeatable indoors (if the AKAI-matches were deemed official Ivan's streak that year would've been broken by this loss and another indoor loss in Perth again against Bear)...

The graphite was made for Borg's play. He was fighting to play todays graphite game with the old, wooden teaspoons -- and he made it...

He would've been much better with graphite -- back then in the early 80s...

jimbo333
06-17-2009, 05:08 PM
Declined due to lack of mental toughness basically, which up to that point had made him a winner.

I agree he should have waited to come back in the Seniors tour.

(although it hadn't started so he couldn't)

Borgforever
06-17-2009, 05:22 PM
Borg had more psychological strength than Jimbo -- which he proved in their five-setters (which Jimbo lost them all -- even when he was up 6-0, 6-4) and won more big titles and had all those records DURING the time Jimbo played.

If you, Jimbo333, equate mental strength with playing a long career you confuse meaning of the expression. And you know this as well...

A willingness to continue during death-threats and all the hassle -- it sounds more like insanity...

And when did Jimbo suffer from all the hassles of being the most famous man on the planet?

Jimmy was chillin' when Björn was hounded...

Jimbo was never even on the top 500 of famous. No one made a death-threat to him (although I bet Arthur Ashe and a few others wished to do him in at one time or another -- in contrast to Borg).

3000 people didn't stand behind a rope just to watch Jimbo walk into his car and drive off after every match at Wimby for six years running -- like Björn...

Benhur
06-17-2009, 05:29 PM
He would prefer to be completely unknown. The hassles with this "problem" was his biggest hurdle.

This post is too rich to go unanswered.

It may well be that Borg would prefer to be completely unknown. But if so, one wonders why this intense craving for anonimity is expressed by driving around Miami with a bimbo by his side, on a gold-trim Bentley registered in Montecarlo, with license plates that read BJORN, in case anyone missed the identity of the driver.

It is also a source of wonder that the same person, and that would be you, who works as a 24/7 fan boy singing the unearthly greatness of his idol, takes a schizophrenic break to wax plaintive about the ravages that excessive idolization performs on celebrities.

Additionally, none of the above explains in the least the question of this thread. Celebrities as stellar as this one have grown old maintaining great skills at their art.

Well, at least I relish the fact that you had enough lucidity to put the word "problem" in quotation marks.

Borgforever
06-17-2009, 05:37 PM
Ben-hur -- why don't you go back and argue about why Ivan Lendl was the true No. 1 for 1989. I think you only made 67866544 posts saying the same thing -- I think you can wax fan-boy-stylie in at least 4567 more times -- saying exactly the same thing as you said all the other posts...

Please? You can do it... Be a good little Ben-Hur now... Run the 1989-Lendl-chariot-race some more rounds...

pc1
06-17-2009, 05:59 PM
True -- but Borg started to up the ante on his game in the early 80s and particularly in 1982 (check out the AKAI-clips) you see Borg hitting more instant winners from the baseline on returns, in rallies, well from anywhere.

He had a reinforced Donnay-racquet, which was even more graphite-like, without actually be graphite, which allowed better control, precision and power which is seen instantly. Borg also makes mincemeat out of Mac's serve here on the return -- FINALLY -- doing what Lendl and Jimbo had done for years already -- returning Mac's serve from the baseline instead of standing in the fifteenth row in the stands to receive...

And the result is clear. Borg always had lightning-reflexes, sorry, cobra-reflexes :-)

Too bad we never got to see Björn Borg 2.0 with the new sword at RG, Wimby, USO and Kooyong -- as fast as always and more deadly...

Remember at AKAI -- Borg beat Lendl 6-1, 6-4, 6-2 -- when Lendl was unbeatable indoors (if the AKAI-matches were deemed official Ivan's streak that year would've been broken by this loss and another indoor loss in Perth again against Bear)...

The graphite was made for Borg's play. He was fighting to play todays graphite game with the old, wooden teaspoons -- and he made it...

He would've been much better with graphite -- back then in the early 80s...

I think Borg would have been fantastic with graphite. His style and swing was ideal for it.

It was incredible the amount of topspin Borg got with those old small wooden rackets. If memory serves they did some sort of a test years ago to see who could hit the most topspin and Borg was easily number one over all the active players.

I think they give Laver some sort of a soup up racket some he could hit more topspin and he came relatively close. I think the test was done in the late 1970's when Laver was retired.

CyBorg
06-17-2009, 06:06 PM
If memory serves they did some sort of a test years ago to see who could hit the most topspin and Borg was easily number one over all the active players.

If someone has more information I would be interested.

CyBorg
06-17-2009, 06:07 PM
It may well be that Borg would prefer to be completely unknown. But if so, one wonders why this intense craving for anonimity is expressed by driving around Miami with a bimbo by his side, on a gold-trim Bentley registered in Montecarlo, with license plates that read BJORN, in case anyone missed the identity of the driver.

haha - In Bjorn's defense he wasn't in Miami. He was in MC. :)
(or so says the OP, who's just relaying what someone else said)

Borgforever
06-17-2009, 06:15 PM
Every player benefitted from the wood/graphite switch -- it really amped up the tempo and precision.

And as regards to one player who would've also made a tremedous leap forward were -- and here I fully agree with Arthur Ashe -- Rod Laver in the 60s with graphite -- look out -- duck -- here's your head what's your hurry!? :-)

pc1
06-17-2009, 06:28 PM
If someone has more information I would be interested.

I'm fairly certain it's true but I can't find anything on it on the internet.

jimbo333
06-17-2009, 07:07 PM
Borg had more psychological strength than Jimbo -- which he proved in their five-setters (which Jimbo lost them all -- even when he was up 6-0, 6-4) and won more big titles and had all those records DURING the time Jimbo played.

If you, Jimbo333, equate mental strength with playing a long career you confuse meaning of the expression. And you know this as well...

A willingness to continue during death-threats and all the hassle -- it sounds more like insanity...

And when did Jimbo suffer from all the hassles of being the most famous man on the planet?

Jimmy was chillin' when Björn was hounded...

Jimbo was never even on the top 500 of famous. No one made a death-threat to him (although I bet Arthur Ashe and a few others wished to do him in at one time or another -- in contrast to Borg).

3000 people didn't stand behind a rope just to watch Jimbo walk into his car and drive off after every match at Wimby for six years running -- like Björn...

If you're saying Borg went mad, then yes I agree with you. I was trying to be polite.

(and Connors was as mentally tough as anyone)

Benhur
06-17-2009, 08:21 PM
Ben-hur -- why don't you go back and argue about why Ivan Lendl was the true No. 1 for 1989. I think you only made 67866544 posts saying the same thing -- I think you can wax fan-boy-stylie in at least 4567 more times -- saying exactly the same thing as you said all the other posts...

Please? You can do it... Be a good little Ben-Hur now... Run the 1989-Lendl-chariot-race some more rounds...

There is nothing left to argue. My arguments are clearly expressed in the Lendl - Becker 1989 thread. I doubt I have 67866544 posts on the matter, since my total post count is around 900, and only a very small percentage of them deal with Lendl, of whom I am not particularly fond but who I think was a very good player. I am not a Lendl fanboy in any way near the fashion you are a Borg mystic groupie. I do of course think that Lendl has the best record in 1989, and you will see why I think so if you are able to read my posts.

Do you have anything to say about what I wrote?

And how is your fatherland behaving these days? I was there once and I felt it was undescribably depressing, even worse than Quebec, which is so bleak that I left it for California with few regrets. If you are looking for a fatherly figure to soothe the corrosive effect of those dismal winter nights, I recommend you turn your attention to our good Lord, His Son, Manitú, Allah, Yasenbrenia, and all their numerous twins, rather than good old Bjorn who never hurt nobody and, as you point out, was just a tennis player in the 70s. Your rhapsodies do grow old.

Benhur
06-17-2009, 08:32 PM
haha - In Bjorn's defense he wasn't in Miami. He was in MC. :)
(or so says the OP, who's just relaying what someone else said)

Oops. Thanks for that. I have no idea why I thought it was Miami. It does indeed lower the seriousness of the charge, but still...
Not that I am bothered at all if good old Bjorn likes to toot his horn a little bit. Why not? He earned it. But all this jiving by the fanboy how he would just love to be unknown. P-l-e-e-a-s-e. Spare me.

CyBorg
06-17-2009, 08:55 PM
Oops. Thanks for that. I have no idea why I thought it was Miami. It does indeed lower the seriousness of the charge, but still...
Not that I am bothered at all if good old Bjorn likes to toot his horn a little bit. Why not? He earned it. But all this jiving by the fanboy how he would just love to be unknown. P-l-e-e-a-s-e. Spare me.

I think Bjorn was indeed tired of the fame, but perhaps the feeling dissipated after a while. I think he got wrapped up in the Federer-Nadal drama, as many folks did too.

Moose Malloy
06-19-2009, 08:53 AM
one wonders why this intense craving for anonimity is expressed by driving around Miami with a bimbo by his side

Yeah, what a jerk, being seen driving around with - his wife.

Benhur
06-23-2009, 10:50 PM
Yeah, what a jerk, being seen driving around with - his wife.

The girl was the wife?
Well, good. It's better to tout the family as a whole, than just yourself.
Not that I have any problem with that. Not at all. A Bentley in Miami with BJORN on the plates sounds very acceptable to me. He has earned it. In spades.
I do have a problem with mystic idolizers ranting about the awful effects of the idolization of their idol, due to the poisonous work of the idolizers.

Datacipher
06-26-2009, 03:55 PM
This post is too rich to go unanswered.

It may well be that Borg would prefer to be completely unknown. But if so, one wonders why this intense craving for anonimity is expressed by driving around Miami with a bimbo by his side, on a gold-trim Bentley registered in Montecarlo, with license plates that read BJORN, in case anyone missed the identity of the driver.

It is also a source of wonder that the same person, and that would be you, who works as a 24/7 fan boy singing the unearthly greatness of his idol, takes a schizophrenic break to wax plaintive about the ravages that excessive idolization performs on celebrities.
.

YIKES. You're dead on about both BorgForever (who has shown an astonishing lack of knowledge about his own idol in previous threads, despite posting volumes of copied info), and Borg.

AAAA
06-26-2009, 04:48 PM
I'd accept Mac's skillset has more longevity but even so Mac never really retired whereas Borg did so Borg's skillset atrophied more. It's a consideration when talking about the huge disparity between them today.

As you were.

NLBwell
06-27-2009, 11:32 PM
Borg doesn't care about the seniors tour the same way as Connors, McEnroe, and Courier.