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View Full Version : Who did Muster lose to in 1995 to interrupt his clay court winning streak?


BreakPoint
05-16-2006, 01:55 AM
I saw this list in the newspaper today of the longest winning streaks on clay:

53 - Nadal, 2005-present
53 - Vilas, 1977
46 - Borg, 1977-79
40 - Muster, 1995
38 - Muster, 1995-96
38 - Nastase, 1973

So my question is, who did Muster lose to in 1995 that interrupted his clay court winning streak? Was it just one match that he lost between his two winning streaks? If so, I guess that means that had he won that one match, his winning streak would have stretched out to 79 straight matches on clay!!! :eek:

Could anyone, even Nadal, have beaten that record?

federmann
05-16-2006, 02:41 AM
Muster lost to Albert Costa in five sets in the final of kitzbuehel (austria) in 1995.

vive le beau jeu !
05-16-2006, 03:00 AM
Muster lost to Albert Costa in five sets in the final of kitzbuehel (austria) in 1995.

mmmh i think it's corretja at gstaad (1st round)...
i'm going to check it.

federmann
05-16-2006, 06:28 AM
no no, you don't need to check it. i know it for sure and besides that i have already checked it ;)

federmann
05-16-2006, 06:29 AM
it was costa

vive le beau jeu !
05-16-2006, 06:31 AM
it was costa

and no-no-no... i checked it and it was corretja !!! ;)

http://www.atptennis.com/en/players/playerprofiles/playeractivity/default.asp?year=1995&query=Singles&player=M099&x=18&y=9

BabolatFan
05-16-2006, 06:33 AM
Put muster in the books now and let's look forward to GR this year...

BreakPoint
05-16-2006, 10:54 AM
You're both correct! Muster lost to Corretja at Gstaad in the 1st round in straight sets in early July 1995 and then lost to Costa at Kitzbuhel in 5 sets at the end of July 1995. Thanks for the replies and the link.

So he actually lost twice that month in 1995. It also looks like he withdrew in the 2nd round against Fillipini that same month in Amsterdam.

Oh well, he wasn't as close to setting the all-time record as I thought he might have been.

Moose Malloy
05-16-2006, 11:49 AM
BP, don't forget:

In a conference call last week, Vilas, who was driven to distraction and retired trailing 1-6, 5-7 to Nastase, said, "Really I didn't lose to a player, I lost to a racquet."

The racquet was banned a week later & Vilas won 23 straight more matches on clay, so his streak should be 76, not 53.

And Borg's streak ended with a retirement due to injury in Hamburg '79. Had he not played that match, he also would have a 76 match streak.

And let's see Nadal equal this:

From May 1990 to August 1995, Muster won 24 consecutive finals on clay!

Nadal is up to 12.

armand
05-16-2006, 12:08 PM
Wow, Nadal really sucks! Just kidding.

Moose Malloy: What racquet was that? Was it perhaps the spaghetti string set up?

BreakPoint
05-16-2006, 12:15 PM
The racquet was banned a week later & Vilas won 23 straight more matches on clay, so his streak should be 76, not 53.

And Borg's streak ended with a retirement due to injury in Hamburg '79. Had he not played that match, he also would have a 76 match streak.


Actually, had Nastase not had that spaghetti strung racquet and Vilas had beaten him, Vilas' streak would have been 77 (adding in the win against Nastase). Wouldn't that have been fitting? 77 straight wins in '77. :p His record would have been the same number as his greatest year on tour ever. :D

He also would have exceeded Borg's record by one, had Borg not retired during that match in Hamburg in '79.

BreakPoint
05-16-2006, 12:16 PM
Moose Malloy: What racquet was that? Was it perhaps the spaghetti string et up?

Yes, Nastase was using the spaghetti strung racquet.

federmann
05-17-2006, 04:54 AM
and no-no-no... i checked it and it was corretja !!! ;)

http://www.atptennis.com/en/players/playerprofiles/playeractivity/default.asp?year=1995&query=Singles&player=M099&x=18&y=9

sorry, you're right. i knew for sure that he lost to costa in 1995 in kitzbuehel. i thought it was the only match he lost that year (must have forgotten that) and so i didn't check his activity of 1995, but only if it's true that he lost to costa. ;)

!Tym
05-17-2006, 05:49 AM
BP, don't forget:

In a conference call last week, Vilas, who was driven to distraction and retired trailing 1-6, 5-7 to Nastase, said, "Really I didn't lose to a player, I lost to a racquet."

The racquet was banned a week later & Vilas won 23 straight more matches on clay, so his streak should be 76, not 53.

And Borg's streak ended with a retirement due to injury in Hamburg '79. Had he not played that match, he also would have a 76 match streak.

And let's see Nadal equal this:

From May 1990 to August 1995, Muster won 24 consecutive finals on clay!

Nadal is up to 12.

Yes, Muster was the exact opposite of Pioline in finals. Pioline was a basket case mentally in finals and would just play inhibited and tense compared to the free flowing strokes that got him there in the first place.

Muster on the other hand was a freakin' animal mentally in finals, once he got you in his death claws, don't know that I've ever seen a more fearsome killer instinct in a guy.

In short, in finals = Muster = hungry lion, your head raw steak. Pioline = Minnie Mouse in a Marilyn Monroe get-up trying to hold her skirt from blowing up.

Steve Huff
05-17-2006, 09:16 PM
I never really thought of Muster as a fierce attacker--maybe an aggressive baseliner. Mostly, he was a retriever. He'd get to everything. He had more energy than about anyone.

travlerajm
05-17-2006, 09:22 PM
I think the spaghetti string will resurface soon with a different configuration. They banned the spaghetti string, but they didn't ban the lateral deformation mechanism that allows them to generate immense amounts of spin. Imagine a racquet strung at low tension with large gauge rubber bands. It would be legal, and it would be strong enough to last a match, and it would generate almost as much spin as spaghetti strings!

!Tym
05-18-2006, 05:54 AM
I never really thought of Muster as a fierce attacker--maybe an aggressive baseliner. Mostly, he was a retriever. He'd get to everything. He had more energy than about anyone.

Really, this is a slight albeight understandable misperception in my opinion. He didn't just retrieve, he also forced many errors. He pounded it off both sides all day long with immense spin, and hit as heavy a ball as there was. Muster in his prime hit very hard, and as relentlessly and consistently as anyone I've ever seen. He just stood far back to do this, but he really wasn't a retriever during his peak.

He was as Patrick McEnroe said actually an agressive baseliner in that he forced errors with the heaviness of his shot. However, you can be this while also still being a retriever in the sense that you're willing to run down any ball to the end of the earth. However, a mere retriever doesn't have the power or OFFENSIVE spin Muster had. When you get to the true extreme levels of topspin that Muster, Bruguera, and Nadal could/put on a ball, that's a result of extreme racket head speed. When you put that kind of tour leading spin on the ball, it forces errors, wheras extreme racket head speed in a flat arc simply creates an outright winner; still they both result in a point that was won rather than lost in my opinion. If Nadal, all he could do was run all day and hit medium pace shots like Hewitt with medium spin? Nadal's shots by themselves induce more erros in my opinion, the spin itself causes many more errors. Add that with his immense dedication to retrieiving anything as well, then well you can see why he's so dominant on clay, he's got all the bases covered so to speak.

A guy like Felix Mantilla hit with a lot of topspin, but definitely not as heavy or without the same vicious bite as the other three mentioned, which is why at his peak he was never anything more than a dark horse contender for the French rather than considered the man to beat. The difference between merely being a very good clay courter like Corretja, Mantilla, and Costa types in my opinion is that the great clay courter has to have that little extra besides just speed and court coverage, and fairly heavy, but not that heavy strokes.

Of all the guys who've managed to be "the man" on clay in the 90s, the only one who didn't have that little extra required in sting or heaviness/weight of shot to separate them from the rest of the field; that guy is Coria. And Coria was relatively short-lived, and he choked like a dog when he had his chance. Coria doesn't have that super heavy weight behind his shot that is capable of inducing errors by itself, but his placement at his peak was pinpoint, he had superb feel and disguise for the drop shot (as good as any clay courter I've seen) and really made that a weapon for himself he could count on in key moments, and he had an amazing agility in movement that surpassed a guy like Corretja who was supremely fast himself. Still, to me he was more the exception to the rule among "dominant" clay courters since the 90s. He was too me more a retriever in the sense that he couldn't dictate a point with power/spin the way the other dominant guys of the 90s did at their peak. He used his unparalleled ability to hit well and in perfect balance on the run to make his payday.

An example of what I mean is Muster over Chang in the French final. Chang may have been more of a "hard court" player, but Muster after the early nerves, pretty much just pushed Chang around. The key word is pushed. Chang didn't have that extra component of power and spin that Muster did. When Bruguera was at his best, he did the same thing to Chang, by pushing him too deep into the court and unable to generate offense and inducing/forcing errors despite Chang's speed and obviously remarkable retrieving skills and consistency and mental toughness. A guy like Michael Chang doesn't just make errors, you have to make him make errors. You could do that by hitting flat winners or hitting very heavy spin balls to him. Of course, you had to be having a good day, but still if a top class flat hitter or top class heavy spin player were on, they'd force errors or hit winners on him regardless, despite his speed.

Bottom-line, to me, a retrieiver is more someone who doesn't have power/extreme spin that can force errors.

Moose Malloy
05-18-2006, 08:20 AM
The difference between merely being a very good clay courter like Corretja, Mantilla, and Costa types in my opinion is that the great clay courter has to have that little extra besides just speed and court coverage, and fairly heavy, but not that heavy strokes.


Why do you think Costa was a tough opponent for a prime Muster? They had some great battles '95/'96.

lucky leprechaun
05-18-2006, 09:18 AM
In a conference call last week, Vilas, who was driven to distraction and retired trailing 1-6, 5-7 to Nastase, said, "Really I didn't lose to a player, I lost to a racquet."

The racquet was banned a week later & Vilas won 23 straight more matches on clay, so his streak should be 76, not 53.


I wonder why it got banned, seems like its just strings and racquet in a different configuration, it fits within the dimensions. I've always wondered about this. It's kind of exciting, to think that you can become instantly twice as good as you are just by restringing your racquet a different way. I have to find out how to string one of my beater racquets this way just to try it out, though it looks kind of daunting.

Moose Malloy
05-18-2006, 09:31 AM
I wonder why it got banned, seems like its just strings and racquet in a different configuration, it fits within the dimensions. I've always wondered about this.

Tennis was very different in 70s with wood racquets. It was very hard to generate topspin with those racquets which is why Borg & Vilas were so unique. The spaghetti racquet was so different in its spin compared to the way the game was played then, which is why it was controversial & was banned.

With today's modern racquets, the stringing doesn't change the game that much relative to the way the overall game is. There is so much spin anyway, no stringing would make a player that different today like in '77.

Heyford Price
08-22-2008, 01:26 PM
Actually, had Nastase not had that spaghetti strung racquet and Vilas had beaten him, Vilas' streak would have been 77 (adding in the win against Nastase). Wouldn't that have been fitting? 77 straight wins in '77. :p His record would have been the same number as his greatest year on tour ever. :D

He also would have exceeded Borg's record by one, had Borg not retired during that match in Hamburg in '79.

Don't understand the last sentence :confused: