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View Full Version : Tournament of Champions - 1956 to 1959 - is it a Pro. Slam - yes or no?


timnz
06-19-2012, 11:17 PM
Tournament of Champions is figuring on a number of Wikipedia pages as being one of the Pro. Slams (look at Lew Hoad's wikipedia page for instance where he won the 1959 event). It hasn't traditionally been regarded as one of the 'Pro Slams' - but is it?

Same question for Pro. Wimbledon of 1967.

urban
06-20-2012, 07:14 AM
I am not happy with the term pro slam, but its reasonable, to reckon those championships as at least equal with the so called pro majors, yes. Still for most years, there were only 3 pro majors instead of the normal 4 majors per year, so the majors counting is still somewhat misleading.

Mustard
06-20-2012, 08:07 AM
Yes, they are. They were arguably the biggest professional tournaments of the year. To not count them is ridiculous really. We all know how big Wimbledon is, so to not count the first professional tournament to be held at Wimbledon, would clearly be wrong. The same is true with a tournament as big as the Tournament of Champions.

Dan Lobb
06-20-2012, 12:44 PM
Tournament of Champions is figuring on a number of Wikipedia pages as being one of the Pro. Slams (look at Lew Hoad's wikipedia page for instance where he won the 1959 event). It hasn't traditionally been regarded as one of the 'Pro Slams' - but is it?

Same question for Pro. Wimbledon of 1967.

I would rate the 1957, 1958, and 1959 T of C at Forest Hills, plus the 1967 Wimbledon Pro as the greatest pro tournaments ever. Just look at the fields, and the level of play in the finals. The best ever.

timnz
06-20-2012, 05:11 PM
I would rate the 1957, 1958, and 1959 T of C at Forest Hills, plus the 1967 Wimbledon Pro as the greatest pro tournaments ever. Just look at the fields, and the level of play in the finals. The best ever.

Interesting. Tell me about your thoughts on the 1956 Tournament of Champions. Obviously you don't rate it as high.

Dan Lobb
06-22-2012, 10:31 AM
Interesting. Tell me about your thoughts on the 1956 Tournament of Champions. Obviously you don't rate it as high.

The 1956 T of C was an inaugural event, intended to be the pre-eminent event in the pro game, but lacked Hoad and Rosewall, was only best-of-three sets, and was not at Forest Hills, the media and cultural centre of USA (and the world?). Why not at Forest Hills? Because the event lacked the cache and drawing power at this stage to justify the expense of Forest Hills.
Note: The T of C was also played at White City Sydney in 1959, following the re-designation of the Forest Hills event as the US Pro.
Gonzales won the Sydney T of C by beating both Hoad and Rosewall, his biggest tournament win of 1959.

Q&M son
06-30-2012, 12:50 PM
The 1956 T of C was an inaugural event, intended to be the pre-eminent event in the pro game, but lacked Hoad and Rosewall, was only best-of-three sets, and was not at Forest Hills, the media and cultural centre of USA (and the world?). Why not at Forest Hills? Because the event lacked the cache and drawing power at this stage to justify the expense of Forest Hills.
Note: The T of C was also played at White City Sydney in 1959, following the re-designation of the Forest Hills event as the US Pro.
Gonzales won the Sydney T of C by beating both Hoad and Rosewall, his biggest tournament win of 1959.

Thanks for the answer

BobbyOne
07-27-2012, 11:21 AM
Dan Lobb,

I disagree that ToC and Wimbledon 1967 were the best ever pro tournaments.
Wembley and French Pro had often as strong fields and in several years had 16 participants. I agree that ToC and Wimbledon 1967 were first-class events.

Why do you always denigrate Wembley and French Pro?

I don't give ToC and Wim. 1967 a pro GS status because they were played only a few times and once respectively.

The Masters in the late 1950s and in 1964 had as tough participation.

Dan Lobb
07-29-2012, 11:34 AM
Dan Lobb,

I disagree that ToC and Wimbledon 1967 were the best ever pro tournaments.
Wembley and French Pro had often as strong fields and in several years had 16 participants. I agree that ToC and Wimbledon 1967 were first-class events.

Why do you always denigrate Wembley and French Pro?

I don't give ToC and Wim. 1967 a pro GS status because they were played only a few times and once respectively.

The Masters in the late 1950s and in 1964 had as tough participation.

The status of the Wembley and French Pro changed according to the year and the venue.

Mustard
07-29-2012, 11:39 AM
The status of the Wembley and French Pro changed according to the year and the venue.

Certainly not as drastically as you've made out in the past. You only seem to care if it was at Forest Hills or Roland Garros. Remember the "smoke and lack of oxygen" line you were pushing in regards to the 1952 Wembley Pro final between Gonzales and Kramer, which only kicked in, in your view, when Kramer led 5-2 in the fifth set? ;)

Mustard
07-29-2012, 11:44 AM
The 1956 T of C was an inaugural event, intended to be the pre-eminent event in the pro game, but lacked Hoad and Rosewall, was only best-of-three sets, and was not at Forest Hills, the media and cultural centre of USA (and the world?)

You do realise that Rosewall and Hoad were both still amateurs at the time of the 1956 Tournament of Champions? With you being a Hoad fan, you should know that he turned professional after retaining his Wimbledon title in July 1957.

BobbyOne
07-29-2012, 03:43 PM
Dan Lobb,

Your "majorlike" Kooyong event also changed according to time. That's my answer to your Wembley and French Pro changed according to time.

Dan Lobb
07-29-2012, 07:16 PM
You do realise that Rosewall and Hoad were both still amateurs at the time of the 1956 Tournament of Champions? With you being a Hoad fan, you should know that he turned professional after retaining his Wimbledon title in July 1957.

Of course, and that is the point. Hoad and Rosewall were still amateurs, but big names and big draws.

Dan Lobb
07-29-2012, 07:26 PM
Dan Lobb,

Your "majorlike" Kooyong event also changed according to time. That's my answer to your Wembley and French Pro changed according to time.

Exactly, and every major tennis event has to be judged individually.

Mustard
07-29-2012, 07:36 PM
Of course, and that is the point. Hoad and Rosewall were still amateurs, but big names and big draws.

Why say it, though? Amateurs like what Hoad and Rosewall were in August 1956, were never going to play at the 1956 Tournament of Champions. By the 1957 Tournament of Champions, Hoad had just turned professional after retaining his Wimbledon title and Rosewall had been a pro for 10 months since ruining Hoad's tilt at the 1956 Grand Slam.

Dan Lobb
07-29-2012, 07:52 PM
Why say it, though? Amateurs like what Hoad and Rosewall were in August 1956, were never going to play at the 1956 Tournament of Champions. By the 1957 Tournament of Champions, Hoad had just turned professional after retaining his Wimbledon title and Rosewall had been a pro for 10 months since ruining Hoad's tilt at the 1956 Grand Slam.

And that is why the 1957, 1958, 1959 T of C at Forest Hills took place at Forest Hills, the media centre of the planet. The 1956 event had a lesser field, and could not command Forest Hills as a venue.

BobbyOne
07-29-2012, 07:59 PM
Dan Lobb,

Was Forest Hills really regarded as the top venue in the world in the end-1950s? I would say that Wimbledon was a bit higher regarded as it is also nowadays in comparison to US Open.

Mustard
07-29-2012, 08:01 PM
Wimbledon didn't allow professional tennis players on their courts until August 1967.

BobbyOne
07-30-2012, 09:29 AM
Mustard,

You are of course right about Wimbledon.

But Wembley was at least as important than Pro Forest Hills which did not have the tradition of the Wembley event.

Dan Lobb
08-01-2012, 10:45 AM
Wimbledon didn't allow professional tennis players on their courts until August 1967.

Exactly, but at that time, New York was a more exciting and prosperous city, with big things happening in every avenue of human endeavour. (The United Nations, Bernstein and the NY Philharmonic, the great Yankee teams, live television drama,great Broadway shows, etc.)
Wimbledon snobbishly banned the pros, and this was a great mistake for the greater good of the game.
Forest Hills was light years ahead of Wembley as a tennis venue, with more history, open air (not the gas chamber of Wembley), major media.

BobbyOne
08-02-2012, 09:06 AM
Dan Lobb,

Your words "gas chambers of Wembley" are disgusting...

krosero
08-02-2012, 01:13 PM
Dan Lobb,

Your words "gas chambers of Wembley" are disgusting...Second that.

Dan Lobb
08-02-2012, 08:09 PM
Dan Lobb,

Your words "gas chambers of Wembley" are disgusting...

Wembley's legendary smoke buildup was even more disgusting.
Perhaps "smoke-chamber" would be more to your liking.

urban
08-03-2012, 12:31 AM
As a German, i know the undertone of gas-chamber too well (and am ashamed of it).

Dan Lobb
08-03-2012, 08:56 AM
As a German, i know the undertone of gas-chamber too well (and am ashamed of it).

Several players, including Hoad and Gonzales, died prematurely from smoke-related illnesses. Both of these players, and others, (perhaps Drobny?) smoked as if their lives depended on it.

BobbyOne
08-03-2012, 09:00 AM
Dan Lobb,

You don't understand why "gas chambers" is not a fitting term...

Dan Lobb
08-03-2012, 09:03 AM
Dan Lobb,

You don't understand why "gas chambers" is not a fitting term...

If you would prefer "smoke-chamber", that is fine with me.

pc1
08-03-2012, 09:04 AM
Second that.

I third that and like to add that his theory make absolutely no sense.

pc1
08-03-2012, 09:07 AM
Several players, including Hoad and Gonzales, died prematurely from smoke-related illnesses. Both of these players, and others, (perhaps Drobny?) smoked as if their lives depended on it.

You realize that was the times and people did smoke. Movie theater in the United States used to be smoke filled as was restaurants just a few years ago. Perhaps the pros could have given the inane excuse that they lost due to eating at a smoked filled restaurant. I never realize the scientific basis of your theory Dan. I understand the medical journals are being rewritten based on this. Grants are now given to medical groups to work on this.

Mustard
08-03-2012, 11:07 AM
Several players, including Hoad and Gonzales, died prematurely from smoke-related illnesses. Both of these players, and others, (perhaps Drobny?) smoked as if their lives depended on it.

Hoad died of a heart attack on the 3rd July 1994 at the age of 59, having had leukaemia and had been awaiting a bone marrow donor. Gonzales died exactly 1 year later on the 3rd July 1995 at the age of 67, from metastasised cancer, 10 months after originally being diagnosed with stomach cancer. When Gonzales first noticed that something was wrong, he was watching Agassi vs. Chang at the 1994 US Open.

Dan Lobb
08-04-2012, 09:27 AM
Hoad died of a heart attack on the 3rd July 1994 at the age of 59, having had leukaemia and had been awaiting a bone marrow donor. Gonzales died exactly 1 year later on the 3rd July 1995 at the age of 67, from metastasised cancer, 10 months after originally being diagnosed with stomach cancer. When Gonzales first noticed that something was wrong, he was watching Agassi vs. Chang at the 1994 US Open.
Both leukemia and non-lung cancers are statistically related to smoking, even second-hand smoke.

urban
08-04-2012, 10:05 AM
Hoad's wife Jenny, writes that the rare blood desease of Hoad was maybe caused by nuclear treatments, he got for his back problems in the late 50s. His heavy drinking certainly didn't help.

Dan Lobb
08-04-2012, 01:33 PM
Hoad's wife Jenny, writes that the rare blood desease of Hoad was maybe caused by nuclear treatments, he got for his back problems in the late 50s. His heavy drinking certainly didn't help.

In 1976, I watched Hoad on television during an interview puffing heavily from a two-pronged cigarette holder.

Dan Lobb
08-11-2012, 11:01 AM
Hoad died of a heart attack on the 3rd July 1994 at the age of 59, having had leukaemia and had been awaiting a bone marrow donor. Gonzales died exactly 1 year later on the 3rd July 1995 at the age of 67, from metastasised cancer, 10 months after originally being diagnosed with stomach cancer. When Gonzales first noticed that something was wrong, he was watching Agassi vs. Chang at the 1994 US Open.

Did Hoad die while watching the Wimbledon final with Sampras? Could this have caused his heart attack? Hoad was married at Wimbledon church, and is also buried there.
During the famous Borg/McEnroe final at Wimbledon in 1980, something like a dozen Swedes suffered fatal heart attacks.

Dan Lobb
08-15-2012, 10:25 AM
Hoad's wife Jenny, writes that the rare blood desease of Hoad was maybe caused by nuclear treatments, he got for his back problems in the late 50s. His heavy drinking certainly didn't help.

Hoad's back problem was finally treated successfully in 1983 when he had a spinal fusion operation to heal the two herniated discs that had bothered him for years and hindered his tennis career.
The problem was caused in 1955 or even earlier when Hoad would do pushups with 50-pound weights on his back. His back problem first surfaced in 1955.

timnz
09-06-2012, 11:05 PM
Does the World Pro Championships of 1932 and 1933 have a lesser case of being a Pro Major than the 1950's Tournament of Champions. I don't think so. It's clear that the 1932 Tournament was a large part of Bill Tilden's thinking when he ranked tennis players in early 1933.

It seems that this was really regarded as the Professional World Championship at the time. If so, it should have a case from being regarded as a Pro Major.

timnz
09-06-2012, 11:08 PM
Apparently this was regarded as the most prestigous Pro tournament in the world in the 1920's. Should it have Pro. Major status?

I really think that it and the World Pro Championships in Berlin deserve that status. Otherwise we are guilty of historical revisionism by not giving them status just because they are far back in the public memory. The important thing was....were they regarded as the elite Professional top tournament at the time? It seems yes is the answer.

BobbyOne
09-07-2012, 09:16 AM
Apparently this was regarded as the most prestigous Pro tournament in the world in the 1920's. Should it have Pro. Major status?

I really think that it and the World Pro Championships in Berlin deserve that status. Otherwise we are guilty of historical revisionism by not giving them status just because they are far back in the public memory. The important thing was....were they regarded as the elite Professional top tournament at the time? It seems yes is the answer.

Yes, both events were then regarded as pro majors.

timnz
09-09-2012, 02:36 PM
Does the World Pro Championships of 1932 and 1933 have a lesser case of being a Pro Major than the 1950's Tournament of Champions. I don't think so. It's clear that the 1932 Tournament was a large part of Bill Tilden's thinking when he ranked tennis players in early 1933.

It seems that this was really regarded as the Professional World Championship at the time. If so, it should have a case from being regarded as a Pro Major.

From http://www.tennisserver.com/lines/lines_02_10_05.html

by Ray Bowers

“The troupe then traveled to Berlin for the World’s Pro Championship on the red dirt at Rot-Weiss Club in the Grunewald, September 20-26.........The 1932 event clearly ranked with the U.S. Pro as the year's foremost pro tournament, listing 82 entrants in singles........It was a rare triumph for Martin Plaa. Martin, now in his mid-thirties, had sometimes been called the Fifth Musketeer for his past role in helping train the great French national teams. Now, he was met by reporters and cameramen on his return at Gare Nord.....1932 RANKINGS
Tilden’s dominance in the year’s first half and his near-successes in the Chicago and Berlin tournaments place him first in our ranking of pros for 1932. Second place goes to Kozeluh for his triumphs in Chicago and Beaulieu, and third to Plaa, who narrowly won the most prestigious title (Berlin)

83 entrants! It puts the Pro championships of the 1950's and the 1960's in its shadow. Can there be any doubt that the 1932 and 1933 Berlin World Professional Championships were any less a Pro Major than Wembley, French Pro, US Pro, the Tournament of Champions & the Wimbledon Pro?

It is very clear that the players at the time like Tilden rated it as the most prestigious event. Based on that he ranked Plaa ahead of himself in the 1932 rankings.

Dan Lobb
09-09-2012, 02:51 PM
From http://www.tennisserver.com/lines/lines_02_10_05.html

by Ray Bowers

“The troupe then traveled to Berlin for the World’s Pro Championship on the red dirt at Rot-Weiss Club in the Grunewald, September 20-26.........The 1932 event clearly ranked with the U.S. Pro as the year's foremost pro tournament, listing 82 entrants in singles........It was a rare triumph for Martin Plaa. Martin, now in his mid-thirties, had sometimes been called the Fifth Musketeer for his past role in helping train the great French national teams. Now, he was met by reporters and cameramen on his return at Gare Nord.....1932 RANKINGS
Tilden’s dominance in the year’s first half and his near-successes in the Chicago and Berlin tournaments place him first in our ranking of pros for 1932. Second place goes to Kozeluh for his triumphs in Chicago and Beaulieu, and third to Plaa, who narrowly won the most prestigious title (Berlin)

83 entrants! It puts the Pro championships of the 1950's and the 1960's in its shadow. Can there be any doubt that the 1932 and 1933 Berlin World Professional Championships were any less a Pro Major than Wembley, French Pro, US Pro, the Tournament of Champions & the Wimbledon Pro?

It is very clear that the players at the time like Tilden rated it as the most prestigious event. Based on that he ranked Plaa ahead of himself in the 1932 rankings.

Right.
Take a look at the field for the 1959 Forest Hills Tournament of Champions.
Hoad, Gonzales, Rosewall, Trabert, Sedgman, Segura, Cooper, Anderson, Rose, Giammalva.
Six members of the ITHF (Hall of Fame), all but Giammalva winners of multiple major titles. (Rose won both the Australian and French singles titles.)
How many major winners and ITHF members were in the Berlin "World Pro Championship", an event which was officially sanctioned by whom?
Need we go on with this? Really?

BobbyOne
09-09-2012, 03:04 PM
Right.
Take a look at the field for the 1959 Forest Hills Tournament of Champions.
Hoad, Gonzales, Rosewall, Trabert, Sedgman, Segura, Cooper, Anderson, Rose, Giammalva.
Six members of the ITHF (Hall of Fame), all but Giammalva winners of multiple major titles. (Rose won both the Australian and French singles titles.)
How many major winners and ITHF members were in the Berlin "World Pro Championship", an event which was officially sanctioned by whom?
Need we go on with this? Really?

Ther Berlin World Pro Championship was sanctioned by the international Pro Players Association (I forgot the exact name).

You can't compare it with the 1959 event because in the early 1930s not many of the top players had turned pro but with Tilden, K. Kozeluh, Nüsslein, Richards, Plaa, Ramillon, Najuch there were some excellent pros around.

Dan Lobb
09-09-2012, 03:06 PM
Ther Berlin World Pro Championship was sanctioned by the international Pro Players Association (I forgot the exact name).

Thank you for answering the least important of my questions.
But the major objections remain.

Mustard
09-09-2012, 03:33 PM
In 1932-1933, Vines was still amateur, and the only really prominent big-time player to turn professional had been Bill Tilden, who had a fantastic first year as a pro in 1931. But Plaa, and especially Nusslein, were starting to become a nuisance for an aging Tilden before long, and then Vines, Perry and Budge came over as the 1930s went on.

BobbyOne
09-09-2012, 03:42 PM
Thank you for answering the least important of my questions.
But the major objections remain.

Winners of majors (mostly pro majors) were Tilden, K. Kozeluh, Nüsslein, Richards, Plaa, Ramillon, Najuch and A. Burke...

Members of Hall of Fame are Tilden, Richards, Kozeluh and Nüsslein (by the way, the latter two proposed by myself and later by Bud Collins).

timnz
09-09-2012, 04:51 PM
Right.
Take a look at the field for the 1959 Forest Hills Tournament of Champions.
Hoad, Gonzales, Rosewall, Trabert, Sedgman, Segura, Cooper, Anderson, Rose, Giammalva.
Six members of the ITHF (Hall of Fame), all but Giammalva winners of multiple major titles. (Rose won both the Australian and French singles titles.)
How many major winners and ITHF members were in the Berlin "World Pro Championship", an event which was officially sanctioned by whom?
Need we go on with this? Really?

Yes absolutely we need to go with this (with full respect Dan).

Karel Kozeluh
Bill Tilden
Albert Burke
Hans Nüsslein

were all great players. The Pro. game at the time was the Pro game. If you were discounting the 1932, 1933 World Championships because there wasn't enough depth, in your opinion, to the Pro game - wouldn't you also need to discount the US Pro and the French Pro at the same time period? I am not saying that they were better than Vines. I am simply saying it was the top Pro tournament. And being the Top professional tournament it was worthy of major status. It is also reported and respected during the period as the Pro World title - hence this isn't imagined - it is real. I am just trying to bring the history books up to date with what was true on the ground at the time.

timnz
09-09-2012, 08:21 PM
Not seeing any reason to deny the Berlin World Pro Championships 1932 & 1933 and the Bristol Cup (1920's and early 1930')- Pro Major status. They were regarded as amongst the Major Pro tournaments at the time. Hence, that is good enough for me. My only question is about the Bristol Cup in the early 1930's - was it still regarded as a Major then with Berlin being around in 1932 and the French Pro being around in 1930 and 1931?

If you add them to the list of Wembley, French Pro, US Pro, Tournament of Champions and Wimbledon Pro - then it still ensures that there aren't more than 4 Pro Majors in any one calendar year.

Dan Lobb
09-10-2012, 03:24 AM
Yes absolutely we need to go with this (with full respect Dan).

Karel Kozeluh
Bill Tilden
Albert Burke
Hans Nüsslein

were all great players. The Pro. game at the time was the Pro game. If you were discounting the 1932, 1933 World Championships because there wasn't enough depth, in your opinion, to the Pro game - wouldn't you also need to discount the US Pro and the French Pro at the same time period? I am not saying that they were better than Vines. I am simply saying it was the top Pro tournament. And being the Top professional tournament it was worthy of major status. It is also reported and respected during the period as the Pro World title - hence this isn't imagined - it is real. I am just trying to bring the history books up to date with what was true on the ground at the time.

The problem remains that only Tilden had established himself in the more competitive world of amateur tennis, and the others only by playing among themselves. This fails the test of credibility.
In 1959, all the players had made names in the amateur field first, even Segura (he won Queens Club in 1947).
The Forest Hills T of C was in a much higher league then the inaugural events of the 1920's and early 1930's. Likewise the 1967 Wimbledon Pro.

timnz
09-10-2012, 04:33 AM
The problem remains that only Tilden had established himself in the more competitive world of amateur tennis, and the others only by playing among themselves. This fails the test of credibility.
In 1959, all the players had made names in the amateur field first, even Segura (he won Queens Club in 1947).
The Forest Hills T of C was in a much higher league then the inaugural events of the 1920's and early 1930's. Likewise the 1967 Wimbledon Pro.

So you don't think any pro majors (wembley, french pro, us pro) should be counted until what year? (since you don't think the fields were deep enough at that time)

Most people count the US pro as being a major from 1927. What year do you think it should be counted from?

Most people count the French pro as being a major from 1930. What year do you think it should be counted from?

Most people count wembley as being a major from 1934. What year do you think it should be counted from?

BobbyOne
09-10-2012, 07:01 AM
Not seeing any reason to deny the Berlin World Pro Championships 1932 & 1933 and the Bristol Cup (1920's and early 1930')- Pro Major status. They were regarded as amongst the Major Pro tournaments at the time. Hence, that is good enough for me. My only question is about the Bristol Cup in the early 1930's - was it still regarded as a Major then with Berlin being around in 1932 and the French Pro being around in 1930 and 1931?

If you add them to the list of Wembley, French Pro, US Pro, Tournament of Champions and Wimbledon Pro - then it still ensures that there aren't more than 4 Pro Majors in any one calendar year.

It's a very tough decision if we should count Bristol Cup 1930 and later as a major. I don't know the answer.

Dan Lobb
09-10-2012, 11:56 AM
So you don't think any pro majors (wembley, french pro, us pro) should be counted until what year? (since you don't think the fields were deep enough at that time)

Most people count the US pro as being a major from 1927. What year do you think it should be counted from?

Most people count the French pro as being a major from 1930. What year do you think it should be counted from?

Most people count wembley as being a major from 1934. What year do you think it should be counted from?

Excellent questions.
I would suggest that if there are only two reasonable contenders in a tournament, it should be regarded as a two-man show, not a real tournament.
That would exclude most pro tournaments before 1939, when there were about four or five reasonable contenders for the major pro events. Budge ruined this calculation by withdrawing from the 1939 US Pro for strange reasons, perhaps to avoid facing Vines at this time.
The Budge/Riggs tournaments in 1946 and 1947 had only Kovacs and van Horn to offer any challenge to the top two guys. Budge and Riggs regularly made the big finals.
I would say that by 1953, with the emergence of Segura and Sedgman in the pro ranks, there is sufficient depth to start talking about "majors" in the pro context.
There should be some consideration of stamina in a major event, which you do not get when you only have one serious challenge.
This is where the amateur majors have a huge edge on the pro majors, with seven rounds, sometimes with a challenge in an early round.

Mustard
09-25-2012, 12:44 PM
I notice on wikipedia that the World Pro Championships in Berlin in 1932-1933 had been added to the list of professional majors. Does anybody know what the scores were for the finals in these years?

BobbyOne
09-25-2012, 05:07 PM
I notice on wikipedia that the World Pro Championships in Berlin in 1932-1933 had been added to the list of professional majors. Does anybody know what the scores were for the finals in these years?

In 1932 Plaa d. Tilden for first place (it was a r.r. with also Nüsslein and Albert Burke participating) 6-0,7-5,8-6. Nüsslein emerged third.

In 1933 there was again a round robin. Nüsslein beat Tilden 1-6,6-4,7-5,6-3 for first place. Third was K. Kozeluh, fourth Najuch.

It's worth mentioning that both events had large participation. In 1932 there were at least 64 players participating.

Mustard
09-25-2012, 06:17 PM
In 1932 Plaa d. Tilden for first place (it was a r.r. with also Nüsslein and Albert Burke participating) 6-0,7-5,8-6. Nüsslein emerged third.

In 1933 there was again a round robin. Nüsslein beat Tilden 1-6,6-4,7-5,6-3 for first place. Third was K. Kozeluh, fourth Najuch.

It's worth mentioning that both events had large participation. In 1932 there were at least 64 players participating.

Thanks very much :)

timnz
09-25-2012, 10:12 PM
I notice on wikipedia that the World Pro Championships in Berlin in 1932-1933 had been added to the list of professional majors. Does anybody know what the scores were for the finals in these years?

Yes I will own up. That was me who updated the Wikipedia article.

The evidence just got overwhelming that this was a Pro Major. It had a much larger field than any of the other Pro Majors of the 50's or 60's. In 1933 it had over 80 players! I also did an Internet Search of the newspapers at the time - consistently it was called the World Pro. Championship. Tilden who was runner up to Plaa in 1932 - rated Plaa the number 1 for 1932 - one would think largely on the basis of that tournament. The final confirmation for me was Tennis Historian Ray Bowers in the 'History of the Pro Tennis Wars Chapter IV' this tournament at the time was regarded as the most prestigious professional tournament in the world.

I have to say, an equally strong case is developing for the Bristol Cup being a Pro. Major. It is very clear that Kozeluh was regarded by everyone as the World Pro. Champion at the beginning of 1931. That was the primary reason he had the head to head tour with Tilden once Tilden turned Pro. to determine who the new Pro Champion was. Why was Kozeluh regarded as the World Pro Champion? - because he was the winner of the Bristol Cup (he actually won it many times). Now if a tournament establishes who is the World Champion for the year - surely it should be regarded as a Pro. Major.

BobbyOne
09-25-2012, 10:45 PM
Thanks very much :)

Mustard, I have forgotten something to tell: I possess a photograph (got it from Frau Nüsslein) showing Martin Plaa after his sensational win against Tilden. It shows Plaa in tears...

I find it worth to mention that Plaa won the first set by 6-0! Tilden in those days seldom lost a set that way...


In 1935 he lost two sets by 6-0 in the final of the US Pro against K. Kozeluh.

Plaa's win shows also that he, Kozeluh, Nüsslein, Ramillon, A. Burke and Najuch were more than just journeymen as some posters (or is it only one poster?) try to insinuate...

treblings
09-25-2012, 11:03 PM
Mustard, I have forgotten something to tell: I possess a photograph (got it from Frau Nüsslein) showing Martin Plaa after his sensational win against Tilden. It shows Plaa in tears...

I find it worth to mention that Plaa won the first set by 6-0! Tilden in those days seldom lost a set that way...


In 1935 he lost two sets by 6-0 in the final of the US Pro against K. Kozeluh.

Plaa's win shows also that he, Kozeluh, Nüsslein, Ramillon, A. Burke and Najuch were more than just journeymen as some posters (or is it only one poster?) try to insinuate...

is there a definition of the term ´journeymen´that is widely accepted?

BobbyOne
09-26-2012, 12:17 AM
is there a definition of the term ´journeymen´that is widely accepted?

I'm not of English language but I think that kiki and maybe others use that word to belittle players like Nüsslein and K. Kozeluh...

treblings
09-26-2012, 03:47 AM
I'm not of English language but I think that kiki and maybe others use that word to belittle players like Nüsslein and K. Kozeluh...

i sense that as well, that it is sometimes used to belittle players.
i wanted to ask for a definition of that term in order to see whether everybodys definition is about the same:) if it´s not, how can you argue?
is someone not a journeyman, who beats the no.1 player in the world?
or do you need to win a major or be ranked top ten to not be a journeyman?
btw, i don´t think kiki is a native english speaker and i know i´m not.
the more reason to find a common definition to know what the other means

kiki
09-26-2012, 05:30 AM
Winners of majors (mostly pro majors) were Tilden, K. Kozeluh, Nüsslein, Richards, Plaa, Ramillon, Najuch and A. Burke...

Members of Hall of Fame are Tilden, Richards, Kozeluh and Nüsslein (by the way, the latter two proposed by myself and later by Bud Collins).

Never heard of guys like Plaa,Ramillom,Najuch and Burke
Where did they come frpm?

kiki
09-26-2012, 05:44 AM
Mustard, I have forgotten something to tell: I possess a photograph (got it from Frau Nüsslein) showing Martin Plaa after his sensational win against Tilden. It shows Plaa in tears...

I find it worth to mention that Plaa won the first set by 6-0! Tilden in those days seldom lost a set that way...


In 1935 he lost two sets by 6-0 in the final of the US Pro against K. Kozeluh.

Plaa's win shows also that he, Kozeluh, Nüsslein, Ramillon, A. Burke and Najuch were more than just journeymen as some posters (or is it only one poster?) try to insinuate...

Aren' you a vampire? I mean your relation to old Fraulwin Nusslein is just....
Journeymamship is the general standart for 90% of normal people that must work a whole journey to make a living including middle to high class, midle to middle class, middle to working class and, of course, working class
In my mouth it never pretends being an insult but rather to aknowlwdge a non true champuion player who, in spite of this shortcoming he or she never overcame, can have high middle class status and be respected in his profession in the way a Nusslein, a Kovacs, a Segura or more recently a Ferrer and other non major achievers were respected

Carsomyr
09-26-2012, 06:02 AM
is there a definition of the term ´journeymen´that is widely accepted?

In no definition of "journeymen" would you find reference to players like Nusslein and Segura.

Mustard
09-26-2012, 08:24 AM
Yes I will own up. That was me who updated the Wikipedia article.

Just one thing you need to do now, get the World Pro and "W (1933)" to show up on Hans Nusslein's infobox on his wikipedia page. Also, "F (1932, 1933)" on Bill Tilden's wikipedia page.

Never heard of guys like Plaa,Ramillom,Najuch and Burke
Where did they come frpm?

Plaa won the 1931 French Pro and the 1932 World Pro. Ramillon won the 1932 French Pro. Najuch and Burke were professional in the relatively early Bristol Cup years, when there was no professional tour to speak of, as such. Burke beat Najuch in the 1924 Bristol Cup final in Cannes.

urban
09-26-2012, 10:41 AM
We should consider up and downs in pro tennis history. The pro scene of the 20s was in reality contested by tennis coaches, who had given tennis lessons and were no longer available for the strict amateur code. Dan Maskell tells his story in his autobiography. Real pro tennis as a spectators sport started with Suzanne Lenglen and C.C. (Cash and Carry) Pyle, who promoted the first tour between the French star, who had trouble with the Queen Mary and the Wimbledon committee, and a hapless US counterpart. Some men played on the undercart, among them Vinnie Richards. Despite the boost given by Tilden, the pro scene in the 30s was still evolving; all in all i still reckon the amateur game at the majors and the DC to be a bit more competitive.

In the late 40s, the pro game got a shot in the arm with the arrival of Kramer. The 1948 US pro at Forest Hills was a fine affair with 128 men competing, and Kramer, Budge, Riggs and Kovacs in the draw. In the early 50s the pro game took a dip. Kramer was very selective in his play, Gonzalez sometimes in and out, the whole tour sometimes in disarray. McCauley describes the Gonzalez-Trabert tour as the begin of the real strong pro game. In the late 50s, the pro tour overshadowed the amateur game, when virtually all leading amateurs had turned pro. But somehow, promoter Kramer let this big chance for an earlier pro or open game go. In the early 60s, the tour had financial and personal problems before Laver's arrival. 1967 was again a strong year, when 7 pros were in the overall top ten.

treblings
09-26-2012, 11:23 AM
In no definition of "journeymen" would you find reference to players like Nusslein and Segura.

agreed, to include them in a list of journeymen seems just to be meant as a provocation

treblings
09-26-2012, 11:25 AM
We should consider up and downs in pro tennis history. The pro scene of the 20s was in reality contested by tennis coaches, who had given tennis lessons and were no longer available for the strict amateur code. Dan Maskell tells his story in his autobiography. Real pro tennis as a spectators sport started with Suzanne Lenglen and C.C. (Cash and Carry) Pyle, who promoted the first tour between the French star, who had trouble with the Queen Mary and the Wimbledon committee, and a hapless US counterpart. Some men played on the undercart, among them Vinnie Richards. Despite the boost given by Tilden, the pro scene in the 30s was still evolving; all in all i still reckon the amateur game at the majors and the DC to be a bit more competitive.

In the late 40s, the pro game got a shot in the arm with the arrival of Kramer. The 1948 US pro at Forest Hills was a fine affair with 128 men competing, and Kramer, Budge, Riggs and Kovacs in the draw. In the early 50s the pro game took a dip. Kramer was very selective in his play, Gonzalez sometimes in and out, the whole tour sometimes in disarray. McCauley describes the Gonzalez-Trabert tour as the begin of the real strong pro game. In the late 50s, the pro tour overshadowed the amateur game, when virtually all leading amateurs had turned pro. But somehow, promoter Kramer let this big chance for an earlier pro or open game go. In the early 60s, the tour had financial and personal problems before Laver's arrival. 1967 was again a strong year, when 7 pros were in the overall top ten.

was there a real chance in the late 50´s for open tennis to come that soon?

Mustard
09-26-2012, 11:29 AM
I think the top pros were better by the times Vines became professional (as well as Tilden in 1931), although the gap between the top pros and the top amateurs was close from 1931-1947. When Kramer became the best pro, the level of the top professionals started to become considerably greater than the level of the top amateurs.

For example, I think Vines in 1934-1936 was better than Perry in the same period, and I also think Vines was better than Budge in 1938. Although, as I said earlier, the gap was close.

Mustard
09-26-2012, 11:31 AM
was there a real chance in the late 50´s for open tennis to come that soon?

There was a vote on whether tennis should go open in 1960, and it missed out by 5 votes.

treblings
09-26-2012, 11:40 AM
There was a vote on whether tennis should go open in 1960, and it missed out by 5 votes.

i didn´t know that. who had the right to vote? members of the ITF?

Mustard
09-26-2012, 12:30 PM
i didn´t know that. who had the right to vote? members of the ITF?

The latter. The ITF (then ILTF) voted on it in Paris in 1960. In order to pass, it needed 139 yes votes out of the 209 votes in total. There were 134 yes votes in total, so 5 short of what was needed.

Mustard
09-26-2012, 12:43 PM
I have to say, an equally strong case is developing for the Bristol Cup being a Pro. Major. It is very clear that Kozeluh was regarded by everyone as the World Pro. Champion at the beginning of 1931. That was the primary reason he had the head to head tour with Tilden once Tilden turned Pro. to determine who the new Pro Champion was. Why was Kozeluh regarded as the World Pro Champion? - because he was the winner of the Bristol Cup (he actually won it many times). Now if a tournament establishes who is the World Champion for the year - surely it should be regarded as a Pro. Major.

I have Karel Kozeluh as the best professional player in 1929 and 1930, with Vinny Richards as the second best professional player in those years.

Kozeluh won the 1930 French Pro at Roland Garros, the first French Pro tournament. At the time when Tilden turned professional, it's clear that Kozeluh (French Pro champion) and Richards (US Pro champion) were the best professional players at that time.

timnz
09-26-2012, 01:33 PM
Someone has just updated the wikipedia article

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Major_professional_tennis_tournaments_before_the_O pen_Era

and wiped out the tournament of champions, wimbledon pro and world pro from being pro majors. I just don't get it. At the time these tournaments were regarded as majors. See this link of Nusslein with his 1934 US Pro trophy where it refers to him being the current World Pro champion (from his win at the berlin world pro the previous september)

http://www.corbisimages.com/stock-photo/rights-managed/VV12245/hans-nusslein-holding-his-trophy

There is no sense from that webpage that the world pro is a lesser championship than the US Pro

I just think that we should judge history from how things were viewed at the time. If sometime in the future people say, well the French open wasnt really a major because xyz reason.....well we would view that as not being right, because we know that we all viewed it as a major now. Same with these 3 tournaments under discussion.

Mustard
09-26-2012, 01:51 PM
The guy says that the French Pro, Wembley Pro and US Pro are seen as the big 3 by sources because of their longevity, but that in some years, the other big tournaments listed were as big, if not bigger, but they were shortlived by comparison.

Personally, I agree with you Timnz, that the Tournament of Champions, Wimbledon Pro and World Pro, should be listed there on the table. I have never understood the argument that "sources" should predominate, as if sources were any more impartial and perfect.

timnz
09-26-2012, 01:57 PM
The guy says that the French Pro, Wembley Pro and US Pro are seen as the big 3 by sources because of their longevity, but that in some years, the other big tournaments listed were as big, if not bigger, but they were shortlived by comparison.

Personally, I agree with you Timnz, that the Tournament of Champions, Wimbledon Pro and World Pro, should be listed there on the table. I have never understood the argument that "sources" should predominate, as if sources were any more impartial and perfect.

Who are these 'Sources'? Why can they not be challenged? And are they in fact saying that these three tournaments weren't majors? I know that Ray Bowers for instance says that the World Pro was the most prestigious Professional Tournament in the world. How then can it not be a major? See to me it is all opinion. But the way to establish 'Major' status is how were the tennis Authorities and public, at the time, viewing these events. It is clear when you look at the history - they viewed them as majors. So to not have them on the list wipes out the achievements of Hoad (1959 Tournament of Champions winner), Nusselin (1933 World Pro winner) etc - just because of these 'Sources'......

Mustard
09-26-2012, 02:25 PM
On the wikipedia page now, there's the French Pro, Wembley Pro and US Pro on the main table, and the other shorter lived big tournaments listed below, with champions each year also listed.

BobbyOne
09-26-2012, 02:59 PM
In no definition of "journeymen" would you find reference to players like Nusslein and Segura.

In kiki's posts you would.

BobbyOne
09-26-2012, 03:03 PM
Never heard of guys like Plaa,Ramillom,Najuch and Burke
Where did they come frpm?

They came from Mars. That's why you don't know them.

BobbyOne
09-26-2012, 03:06 PM
Aren' you a vampire? I mean your relation to old Fraulwin Nusslein is just....
Journeymamship is the general standart for 90% of normal people that must work a whole journey to make a living including middle to high class, midle to middle class, middle to working class and, of course, working class
In my mouth it never pretends being an insult but rather to aknowlwdge a non true champuion player who, in spite of this shortcoming he or she never overcame, can have high middle class status and be respected in his profession in the way a Nusslein, a Kovacs, a Segura or more recently a Ferrer and other non major achievers were respected

Anneliese Nüsslein (she died a few years ago) was not a Fräulein but a Frau (Mrs.)

You can't compare Ferrer with Nüsslein, Kovacs and Segura who were first class competitors.

BobbyOne
09-26-2012, 03:32 PM
On the wikipedia page now, there's the French Pro, Wembley Pro and US Pro on the main table, and the other shorter lived big tournaments listed below, with champions each year also listed.

That's also my view: World Pro, F.H. pro and Wimbledon 1967 are big tournaments but not majors because they did not be equivalents to the GS tournament and did not have enough tradition.

timnz
09-26-2012, 05:11 PM
That's also my view: World Pro, F.H. pro and Wimbledon 1967 are big tournaments but not majors because they did not be equivalents to the GS tournament and did not have enough tradition.

What is equivalency in your view? What made them equivalent?

Regarding Tradition - what establishes tradition? The duration of the event right? But that is only discovered retrospectively. They only knew the French Pro, Wembley and the US Pro had longevity retrospectively. But at the time, refer to the photo of Nusslein from my last posts, they regarded the World Pro alongside of the US Pro. - as being part of the 'big' events. They weren't to know that the World Pro. didn't have staying legs. We must judge history as how people perceived it at the time. Otherwise if we might find that the present 4 majors drop off the list of majors in the future because one or more might go out of fashion.

I think it is useful to compare this to golf. Golf's 4 majors changed over times. Bobby Jones is regarded as the guy who won Golf's calendar Grand Slam. However, the majors he won are different than today's majors. Nobody depreciates Jones' achievement and says that it is not a grand slam, because the events are not the same as today's events. No, they realise that the majors change over time - so they judge his achievements according to what was perceived at the time. Everybody in late 1933 early 1934 regarded Nusslein as World Pro. Champion. They did because of his win in Berlin. It's very clear that that event held at least as much weight if not more than the US Pro championships at the time. The fact that it didn't continue as the World Championship shouldn't take anything away from the fact, at the time, it was the World Championship and therefore worthy of a Major status.

Let me rephrase this. If the Berlin World Pro. Championships had continued for decades - then it would be regarded as a Pro. Slam right? (According to your 'tradition' statement). But if it had continued in 1934,1935, 1936...etc etc, 1966, 1967 - would that have made the 1933 event more different for Nusslein to win? No, not at all. It was was it was at the time. He should be given credit for winner what was a major at the time.

The same problem has happened with the World Hard Court Championships. It was officially (according to the ILTF) and regarded by all of the players of the day as a Major. But these days because it is a forgotten event - suddenly people don't recognize it as a Major anymore. But that doesn't take away from the fact that it was recognized as a major at the time. We must get away from historical revisionism.

Mustard
09-26-2012, 06:22 PM
Agreed timnz. The tennis authorities are truly appalling at explaining the sport's history, such as the fact that there were once 3 official majors, which were the World Hard Court Championships, the World Grass Court Championships (aka Wimbledon) and the World Covered Court Championships, rather than the 4 official majors we know today (which only came into effect in 1924-1925). Of course, when the WHCC, Wimbledon and the WCCC were the official majors, the US Championships was widely seen as an unofficial fourth major. This is seldom explained though, as some people who should know better act like the current 4 majors were always so from the beginning of their existence.

Then there's the pro-am split, which lasted for more than 4 decades, and which the authorities are dreadful at explaining, and the single most important reason as to why Pancho Gonzales is criminally underrated on the GOAT lists, not to mention other greats whose greatest achievements were on the professional tour rather than on the amateur tour.

Even in the open era, there was chaos for much of the 1970s and early 1980s with politics on the tour. The order to the tour's structure, like we see today, only really began in 1983, which is less than 30 years ago.

BobbyOne
09-26-2012, 11:22 PM
What is equivalency in your view? What made them equivalent?

Regarding Tradition - what establishes tradition? The duration of the event right? But that is only discovered retrospectively. They only knew the French Pro, Wembley and the US Pro had longevity retrospectively. But at the time, refer to the photo of Nusslein from my last posts, they regarded the World Pro alongside of the US Pro. - as being part of the 'big' events. They weren't to know that the World Pro. didn't have staying legs. We must judge history as how people perceived it at the time. Otherwise if we might find that the present 4 majors drop off the list of majors in the future because one or more might go out of fashion.

I think it is useful to compare this to golf. Golf's 4 majors changed over times. Bobby Jones is regarded as the guy who won Golf's calendar Grand Slam. However, the majors he won are different than today's majors. Nobody depreciates Jones' achievement and says that it is not a grand slam, because the events are not the same as today's events. No, they realise that the majors change over time - so they judge his achievements according to what was perceived at the time. Everybody in late 1933 early 1934 regarded Nusslein as World Pro. Champion. They did because of his win in Berlin. It's very clear that that event held at least as much weight if not more than the US Pro championships at the time. The fact that it didn't continue as the World Championship shouldn't take anything away from the fact, at the time, it was the World Championship and therefore worthy of a Major status.

Let me rephrase this. If the Berlin World Pro. Championships had continued for decades - then it would be regarded as a Pro. Slam right? (According to your 'tradition' statement). But if it had continued in 1934,1935, 1936...etc etc, 1966, 1967 - would that have made the 1933 event more different for Nusslein to win? No, not at all. It was was it was at the time. He should be given credit for winner what was a major at the time.

The same problem has happened with the World Hard Court Championships. It was officially (according to the ILTF) and regarded by all of the players of the day as a Major. But these days because it is a forgotten event - suddenly people don't recognize it as a Major anymore. But that doesn't take away from the fact that it was recognized as a major at the time. We must get away from historical revisionism.

I partly agree with your reservation regarding tradition and equivalents. But only regarding the pre WW2 events. Not regarding the post WW2 events. The latter had long tradition and were equivalents to the G.S. tournaments as they were held at Paris, at London and in the USA.

The US Pro was establishes as early as 1927 and had a certain tradition even in the 1930s.

I think it's common sense at the majority of experts that pro tennis had three majors after the war (or since 1956 the Paris event). Thus we were able to state that Rosewall and Laver achieved a so called Pro Grand Slam even though the players themselves did not call it that way.

Mustard
09-27-2012, 08:19 AM
I think it's common sense at the majority of experts that pro tennis had three majors after the war (or since 1956 the Paris event).

The Tournament of Champions (1956-1959) was just as big an event, as was the Wimbledon Pro of 1967.

Thus we were able to state that Rosewall and Laver achieved a so called Pro Grand Slam even though the players themselves did not call it that way.

Laver won the Wimbledon Pro in 1967, anyway.

pc1
09-27-2012, 08:41 AM
The Tournament of Champions (1956-1959) was just as big an event, as was the Wimbledon Pro of 1967.



Laver won the Wimbledon Pro in 1967, anyway.

I think sometimes we get too much in technicalities. The Tournament of Champions and the Wimbledon Pro were super important tournaments and arguably the most important of the year. Were they Pro Majors? I don't think so. But the fact they were so prestigious is more important. I don't think the pros were into the idea that "I have to build up my majors count now." They were into winning big tournaments and winning money.

What was more important to the Pros in 1972, the WCT Championship or the French and Australian? I would think the WCT Championship. Rosewall won it over Laver that year. Some may argue that it was a small field but I would argue back that they earned it by playing so well over the course of the WCT circuit as the WTF tournament is now.

I would also argue that the 1967 Wimbledon Pro, while perhaps not a Pro Major was the biggest and most important tournament in the Old Pro Tour history.

This is another reason why I think it's so flawed to count majors as the most important criteria to determine the best player of all time.

Mustard
09-27-2012, 11:04 AM
The Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon and US Open have been official majors, recognised by the ITF, since 1924-1925. That is why WCT Dallas and the Masters, as big as they were at the time, were not majors. They were just the tournaments that had the most prize money and were more up to date with the immediate demands of open tennis, unlike the establishment that clung to the old ways as much as possible.

pc1
09-27-2012, 12:24 PM
The Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon and US Open have been official majors, recognised by the ITF, since 1924-1925. That is why WCT Dallas and the Masters, as big as they were at the time, were not majors. They were just the tournaments that had the most prize money and were more up to date with the immediate demands of open tennis, unlike the establishment that clung to the old ways as much as possible.

But as you know the WCT Dallas was perhaps a title more desired by at least some players over at least some majors.

timnz
09-27-2012, 05:01 PM
But as you know the WCT Dallas was perhaps a title more desired by at least some players over at least some majors.

But it wasn't self-describing itself as a Major - whereas the World Pro in Berlin in 32/33 was. The public perceived it as such at the time - newspaper clipping reveal that. Nobody in 32/33 didn't think that the World Pro wasn't a major championship. In fact they though of it as THE Professional Major championship.

BobbyOne
09-27-2012, 06:05 PM
[QUOTE=Mustard;6922106]The Tournament of Champions (1956-1959) was just as big an event, as was the Wimbledon Pro of 1967.



Laver won the Wimbledon Pro in 1967, anyway.[/QUOTE

The Tournament of Champions and Wimbledon 1967 were surely big events but should we include them as pro majors? Then-where is the limit? Should not we include also L.A. Masters, Madison Square Garden, PSW, Masters (1970 and later) and WCT finals? I would say a NO to all of them.

Mustard
09-27-2012, 06:37 PM
[QUOTE=Mustard;6922106]The Tournament of Champions (1956-1959) was just as big an event, as was the Wimbledon Pro of 1967.



Laver won the Wimbledon Pro in 1967, anyway.[/QUOTE

The Tournament of Champions and Wimbledon 1967 were surely big events but should we include them as pro majors? Then-where is the limit? Should not we include also L.A. Masters, Madison Square Garden, PSW, Masters (1970 and later) and WCT finals? I would say a NO to all of them.

What Pro majors had official status? As I said before, the current 4 have been official in the open era and amateur era since 1924-1925.

BobbyOne
09-27-2012, 06:55 PM
[QUOTE=BobbyOne;6923215]

What Pro majors had official status? As I said before, the current 4 have been official in the open era and amateur era since 1924-1925.

Mustard, you are right that the pro majors did have a doubtful status. They did not have the official label "Pro Grand Slam". Nevertheless it was common sense among the pros that Wembley, French Pro and US Pro were the foremost tournaments, and we should rate them as pro majors. Additional tournaments are thus the more doubtful.

But It's maybe interesting that Rosewall valued his two WCT finals as his greatest achievements even though he won four open era G.S. events. I stress that I don't agree with him because I rate his US Open win of 1970 his best win.

timnz
09-27-2012, 08:13 PM
[QUOTE=Mustard;6923258]

Mustard, you are right that the pro majors did have a doubtful status. They did not have the official label "Pro Grand Slam". Nevertheless it was common sense among the pros that Wembley, French Pro and US Pro were the foremost tournaments, and we should rate them as pro majors. Additional tournaments are thus the more doubtful.
.

Was there a sense in 1933 that those 3 tournaments were above the World Pro in Berlin? In reading the newpaper entries and hearing about Tilden's rating of the tournament I don't get that sense at all. The sense is that if anything the World Pro rated above them - or at least at their level. Hence, would it be more proper to say that the World Pro. was a Pro major but lost it's Pro Major status retrospectively because it didn't continue as such? But should Nusslein and Plaa be penalised for that?

BobbyOne
09-27-2012, 10:54 PM
[QUOTE=BobbyOne;6923306]

Was there a sense in 1933 that those 3 tournaments were above the World Pro in Berlin? In reading the newpaper entries and hearing about Tilden's rating of the tournament I don't get that sense at all. The sense is that if anything the World Pro rated above them - or at least at their level. Hence, would it be more proper to say that the World Pro. was a Pro major but lost it's Pro Major status retrospectively because it didn't continue as such? But should Nusslein and Plaa be penalised for that?

I can add a bit about the old World's Pro Championship.

The 1934 French Pro (Tilden beat Plaa in final) was originally called "World's Pro Championship" even though world champion Nüsslein did not paticipate.

In 1935 there also must have been a World pro Championship at Paris because I have an old clipping of 1936 with a hint to the 1935 event when Tilden won. No details known.

In August 1936 Nüsslein beat Tilden (SF) and Cochet (final) at Roland Garros in the world pro championship. No details known.

The 1937 Wembley event was called the world's pro indoor champ.

The 1939 French Pro was also labelled the world pro championship.

Thus we get a certain tradition of the World Pro...

Dan Lobb
09-30-2012, 11:30 AM
I think sometimes we get too much in technicalities. The Tournament of Champions and the Wimbledon Pro were super important tournaments and arguably the most important of the year. Were they Pro Majors? I don't think so. But the fact they were so prestigious is more important. I don't think the pros were into the idea that "I have to build up my majors count now." They were into winning big tournaments and winning money.

What was more important to the Pros in 1972, the WCT Championship or the French and Australian? I would think the WCT Championship. Rosewall won it over Laver that year. Some may argue that it was a small field but I would argue back that they earned it by playing so well over the course of the WCT circuit as the WTF tournament is now.

I would also argue that the 1967 Wimbledon Pro, while perhaps not a Pro Major was the biggest and most important tournament in the Old Pro Tour history.

This is another reason why I think it's so flawed to count majors as the most important criteria to determine the best player of all time.

Great points here. The "official" pro majors were often minor events.
While the 1967 Wimbledon was the most important pro tournament in the way it transitioned to open tennis, and showed Laver at his absolute peak form, I would suggest that the 1959 Forest Hills had a stronger field and showcased a number of greats at their prime. Hoad, Gonzales, a younger and better Rosewall, Sedgman, Trabert, Anderson at his best, Cooper, Segura, Rose, Giammalva (who was a good player, and won a pro tournament that year at Tuscaloosa beating both Riggs and Budge).
Plus, the last TWO rounds were best-of-five sets, a tougher challenge than the semis in 1967, which featured a very deteriorated Hoad among the last four.

BobbyOne
09-30-2012, 05:58 PM
Great points here. The "official" pro majors were often minor events.
While the 1967 Wimbledon was the most important pro tournament in the way it transitioned to open tennis, and showed Laver at his absolute peak form, I would suggest that the 1959 Forest Hills had a stronger field and showcased a number of greats at their prime. Hoad, Gonzales, a younger and better Rosewall, Sedgman, Trabert, Anderson at his best, Cooper, Segura, Rose, Giammalva (who was a good player, and won a pro tournament that year at Tuscaloosa beating both Riggs and Budge).
Plus, the last TWO rounds were best-of-five sets, a tougher challenge than the semis in 1967, which featured a very deteriorated Hoad among the last four.

I agree that 1959 ToC had a stronger field than Wimbledon pro 1967.

Dan, do you realize that Budge was 44 and Riggs was 41 at Tuscaloosa? It's hardly a proof of Giammalva's greatness...

timnz
09-30-2012, 06:30 PM
[QUOTE=timnz;6923482]

I can add a bit about the old World's Pro Championship.

The 1934 French Pro (Tilden beat Plaa in final) was originally called "World's Pro Championship" even though world champion Nüsslein did not paticipate.

In 1935 there also must have been a World pro Championship at Paris because I have an old clipping of 1936 with a hint to the 1935 event when Tilden won. No details known.

In August 1936 Nüsslein beat Tilden (SF) and Cochet (final) at Roland Garros in the world pro championship. No details known.

The 1937 Wembley event was called the world's pro indoor champ.

The 1939 French Pro was also labelled the world pro championship.

Thus we get a certain tradition of the World Pro...

I don't have the references to your indications above. However, rather than Berlin being vaguely the 'World Pro Championships' - it was universally and unambiguously regarded as such. Your above mentions maybe some promoter 'talking up' the event (though it was reasonable to call the Wembley event the World Pro indoor). In contrast universally Berlin in 1932/33 was called and regarded as the World Pro. It was a major at the time, regarded by all as such.

BobbyOne
09-30-2012, 11:34 PM
[QUOTE=BobbyOne;6923663]

I don't have the references to your indications above. However, rather than Berlin being vaguely the 'World Pro Championships' - it was universally and unambiguously regarded as such. Your above mentions maybe some promoter 'talking up' the event (though it was reasonable to call the Wembley event the World Pro indoor). In contrast universally Berlin in 1932/33 was called and regarded as the World Pro. It was a major at the time, regarded by all as such.

timnz, there are newspaper clippings about those maybe strange championships.

Hans Nüsslein used to claim that he won three world pro championships: Berlin 1933, Paris 1936 and Wembley 1937

Dan Lobb
10-01-2012, 06:03 PM
I agree that 1959 ToC had a stronger field than Wimbledon pro 1967.

Dan, do you realize that Budge was 44 and Riggs was 41 at Tuscaloosa? It's hardly a proof of Giammalva's greatness...

True, but they were not REALLY ancient, and could probably beat a lot of players in 1959.
Giammalva won the 1955 Eastern Grasscourts Championships, an important tournament, and played for the U.S.A. Davis Cup team.

BobbyOne
10-01-2012, 11:37 PM
True, but they were not REALLY ancient, and could probably beat a lot of players in 1959.
Giammalva won the 1955 Eastern Grasscourts Championships, an important tournament, and played for the U.S.A. Davis Cup team.

Budge won only ONE match in his 1954 tour...5 years earlier than 1959!

Dan Lobb
10-02-2012, 12:21 PM
Budge won only ONE match in his 1954 tour...5 years earlier than 1959!

That ONE match was a great win against first-place Gonzales.

BobbyOne
10-02-2012, 12:24 PM
That ONE match was a great win against first-place Gonzales.

Yes it was. But what did Budge win in 1959?

Dan Lobb
10-02-2012, 12:48 PM
Yes it was. But what did Budge win in 1959?

Budge and Riggs were still active, and Budge won a set off Laver in 1962.
Riggs beat someone in 1973, who was that?

Dan Lobb
10-02-2012, 01:01 PM
True, but they were not REALLY ancient, and could probably beat a lot of players in 1959.
Giammalva won the 1955 Eastern Grasscourts Championships, an important tournament, and played for the U.S.A. Davis Cup team.

In the Eastern Grasscouts tournament, Giammalva beat Seixas, Nielsen (Wimbledon runner-up that year), and Shea in impressive matches to win the event.

kiki
10-02-2012, 01:14 PM
In 1932 Plaa d. Tilden for first place (it was a r.r. with also Nüsslein and Albert Burke participating) 6-0,7-5,8-6. Nüsslein emerged third.

In 1933 there was again a round robin. Nüsslein beat Tilden 1-6,6-4,7-5,6-3 for first place. Third was K. Kozeluh, fourth Najuch.

It's worth mentioning that both events had large participation. In 1932 there were at least 64 players participating.

Big win for Nusslein¡¡¡ Tilden was, what, 40?

pc1
10-02-2012, 01:34 PM
Big win for Nusslein¡¡¡ Tilden was, what, 40?

Nusslein had his share of big wins my friend. For example he won the 1934 US Pro Champs by defeating Ellsworth Vines in the semi by 7-9 6-1 6-3 6-2 and Kozeluh in the final 6-4 6-2 1-6 7-5.

Dan Lobb
10-03-2012, 09:28 AM
The Tournament of Champions (1956-1959) was just as big an event, as was the Wimbledon Pro of 1967.



Laver won the Wimbledon Pro in 1967, anyway.

Actually, I think that the point we have been trying to make, despite some distractions, is that the Forest Hills Tournament of Champions, and the 1967 Wimbledon were not merely the EQUIVALENT of the established pro majors, but were significantly SUPERIOR to them. That, I believe, is the point.
A marked SUPERIORITY, which the established pro majors, for a number of reasons, could not hope to emulate.
Then, does it make any sense whatsoever NOT to include these super-tournaments among the pro majors? Obviously, the amswer must be "NO"!

BobbyOne
10-03-2012, 12:35 PM
Budge and Riggs were still active, and Budge won a set off Laver in 1962.
Riggs beat someone in 1973, who was that?

I doubt bthat Budge would have won a set off Laver when they played in a serious match.

BobbyOne
10-03-2012, 12:37 PM
In the Eastern Grasscouts tournament, Giammalva beat Seixas, Nielsen (Wimbledon runner-up that year), and Shea in impressive matches to win the event.

I never doubted that Giammalva was a good player. I only wrote that it was not great of him to beat Budge and Riggs in 1959.

BobbyOne
10-03-2012, 12:40 PM
Actually, I think that the point we have been trying to make, despite some distractions, is that the Forest Hills Tournament of Champions, and the 1967 Wimbledon were not merely the EQUIVALENT of the established pro majors, but were significantly SUPERIOR to them. That, I believe, is the point.
A marked SUPERIORITY, which the established pro majors, for a number of reasons, could not hope to emulate.
Then, does it make any sense whatsoever NOT to include these super-tournaments among the pro majors? Obviously, the amswer must be "NO"!

Wembley and French pro were on the same level with Forest Hills and Wimbledon 1967. They had 16 great players in several years.

Dan Lobb
10-03-2012, 02:03 PM
Wembley and French pro were on the same level with Forest Hills and Wimbledon 1967. They had 16 great players in several years.

The French Pro was not always held at Roland Garros, when it would be a major. Stade Coubertin was an embarrassment for a major venue.
Likewise Wembley.
In the years when Forest Hills and Wimbledon Pro were held, they overshadowed the other tournaments. Not even close.

Limpinhitter
10-03-2012, 02:08 PM
I doubt bthat Budge would have won a set off Laver when they played in a serious match.

Prime Don Budge was one of the greatest shotmakers of all time. He was very close to prime Laver, IMO. It doesn't surprise me that a 47 year old Budge could split sets with a pre-prime Laver in a friendly exo.

timnz
10-03-2012, 04:54 PM
Forgive me but I would include the berlin world pro championships in 32/33 if I was retarting the thread today. Big field, best players playing it, universal recognition of it being a major in the press and amongst the players at the time. I would also argue for the bristol cup as well (because its winner was routinally called the world pro champion in the press) but lets leave that aside for now.

It just seems wrong that Plaa, Nusslein, Gonzales, Hoad & Laver are missing majors from their Resume.

Dan Lobb
10-06-2012, 10:53 AM
It just seems wrong that Plaa, Nusslein, Gonzales, Hoad & Laver are missing majors from their Resume.

Indeed it does.
We should add for the above, at least
Gonzales Tournament of Champions Forest Hills (the LA 1956 field was much weaker) in 1957 and 1958
Hoad Tournament of Champions Forest Hills 1959
Laver Wimbledon Pro 1967

There is no reeason to remove these events from the list of major wins, as someone anonymously did.

Dan Lobb
10-06-2012, 11:31 AM
Forgive me but I would include the berlin world pro championships in 32/33 if I was retarting the thread today. Big field, best players playing it, universal recognition of it being a major in the press and amongst the players at the time. I would also argue for the bristol cup as well (because its winner was routinally called the world pro champion in the press) but lets leave that aside for now.

It just seems wrong that Plaa, Nusslein, Gonzales, Hoad & Laver are missing majors from their Resume.

Gonzales' Widipedia biography lists the Tournament of Champions and the Wimbledon Pro among the Pro Slams he participated in, winning three of them.