Fed and Steffi and Nadal and Seles

Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by roysid, Mar 3, 2009.

  1. roysid

    roysid Professional

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    No it's not mixed doubles line up.
    I just got amazed by the similarity between Fed-Nadal and Graf-Seles.

    1) In both cases, one right handed player with excellent serve and all time best forehand dominates the tour like anything. Then a left handed upstart comes and topples the empire. They play some great finals, including GrandSlams. The left handed player first takes over clay and slowly expands into other surface as well.

    2) There are differences too. Graf dominated Seles in early years whereas Nadal was always leading head to head against Fed.

    Now the tragedy. Seles was attacked by Gunther Parche's knife and the rivalry got terminated just when she extended her first win over Graf in hard court.


    Everyone still wonders what would have happened if there was no stabbing, would Seles went on and on or Graf could have turned over.

    Is it only me that thinks that Federer-Nadal is the answer. That we are in a mirror of that rivalry. After dominating tour till 2007 (including wins over Nadal in hard and grass) Federer finally wilted in 2008 which is still going on.
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2009
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  2. anointedone

    anointedone Banned

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    Graf is alot tougher mentally than Federer IMO, and while I think Seles is slightly mentally tougher than Graf the two are far closer in mental toughness than are Federer and Nadal were Nadal IMO is far ahead (yes I am a Nadal but that is my objective belief). Nadal has stripped Federer of feeling he can beat him anywhere it seems. Atleast it seemed Graf had grass where she sort of could count on beating Seles, unless Seles really made some just enormous improvements and changes on that surface in the years to come. Graf also had alteast a fighting chance vs Seles on all surfaces, while Federer has had close to none vs Nadal on clay for awhile, and now absolutely none.

    So I dont think they are totally the same and I dont think Seles could have ever had Graf reach the point of almost total futility that Nadal seemingly has Federer at. I think it would have continued to be a great rivalry and a better one than Federer vs Nadal currently is. That being said no way does Graf win as many as 22 majors without the stabbing IMO, and Seles wins alot more than the 9 she currently has. As Evert said on air one time those numbers are really lopsided and they really shouldnt be.
     
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  3. Warriorroger

    Warriorroger Hall of Fame

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    There are similarities in genius in all four players, like Rafa, Monica created great angles and power and hit unbelievable returns not even seen today. And, although I like and see similarities between Roger and Steffi, the difference between those two is the mental part. Federer won most of his GS finals purely on tennistalent, respect from the opponent. Graf, although responsible for many bagle matches, had many epic matches where she had to fight to the win the title. With the excpetioon of the AO 1999 (against) Monica, I have never seen her defeated before the match started. Monica took over the tour and had wins over Graf, but never dominated her, Graf always had the career lead.

    Many similarities, but also many differences.
     
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  4. DMan

    DMan Professional

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    Is this the 10,000th different take on the whole Graf-Seles debate?
     
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  5. 380pistol

    380pistol Banned

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    Except ...... SELES NEVER OWNED GRAF!!!!!!!!!!!

    At no point in the Graf/Seles rivalry did Monica lead Steffi, pre or post stabbing. In fact during the height of Seles dominance (1991-92), she competed in 7 of 8 slams, reaching the finals of all 7, winning 6. In that same time span she played Graf 4 times losing 3. In fact Seles' only victory was the 1992 Roland Garros final 10-8 in the 3rd.

    And Seles never beat Graf at SW19 or in Flushing Meadows, so how she expanded her dominance across all surfaces is something I don't see.
     
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  6. thalivest

    thalivest Banned

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    Seles played Graf twice at Wimbledon and won a grand total of 4 games in 4 sets.
     
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  7. jman

    jman Semi-Pro

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    That would be a great exhibition match! Fed & Steffi Vs Nadal & Seles.
     
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  8. roysid

    roysid Professional

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    It's true that Graf is mentally tougher than Federer. And Seles didn't dominate Graf at all.
    But was '93 AO final a change. I felt that Seles turned the tables in that final after losing the first set. And Seles would have been dominant for the rest of the tour.
     
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  9. rolandg

    rolandg Semi-Pro

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    Slam finals
     
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  10. gj011

    gj011 Banned

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    Seles dominated Graf on all surfaces except grass from 1990 until the stabbing. Anybody who says differently is delusional. All those who mention their H2H forget that first 3 wins by Graf were when Seles was 16 years old and that Seles was leading 3-1 in slam finals, and that single Graf's win was in Wimbledon.

    Why would Parche pull a knife if there was no domination?
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2009
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  11. ksbh

    ksbh Banned

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    Poor man, no Graf fans to tell him that! LOL! :)

     
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  12. veroniquem

    veroniquem Bionic Poster

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    Yes, one major difference is Wimbledon. Seles was nowhere near as good on grass as Nadal is.
     
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  13. vince evert

    vince evert New User

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    "At no point in the Graf/Seles rivalry did Monica lead Steffi, pre or post stabbing. In fact during the height of Seles dominance (1991-92), she competed in 7 of 8 slams, reaching the finals of all 7, winning 6. In that same time span she played Graf 4 times losing 3. In fact Seles' only victory was the 1992 Roland Garros final 10-8 in the 3rd.

    And Seles never beat Graf at SW19 or in Flushing Meadows, so how she expanded her dominance across all surfaces is something I don't see."

    Aren't you forgetting Monica's 1993 Australian Open win Vs. Graf, 4-6,6-3,6-2.

    That said, Steffi Graf was overall a better player than Monica Seles. It's just a tragedy however that she was out of tennis for nearly two and a half years after the Hamburg incident. We would have surely seen some more memorable Graf-Seles matches if it wasn't for some demented Graf fan. Theirs could've become the best ever rivalry in women's sport. I miss them both.
     
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  14. LDVTennis

    LDVTennis Professional

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    It's not just the mental part. Steffi was a truly great athlete, and could fight late into a third set, or come from behind when down a set and breaks in the second because of her high level of fitness and endurance.

    I just don't see that kind of endurance in Federer's game. I think Federer could learn a lot from watching some of Steffi's last matches vs. Seles. I'm thinking in particular of the '98 meeting with Seles at the Tour Championships.

    By '98, Steffi had learned that the secret to beating Seles all those years on any surface other than grass was to hang in there and to outlast her. So, against Seles from '95 onward, Steffi toned down her "A" game and took a position on the court that put her more in the middle of the court.

    Federer's gotten to the point against Nadal where he's just giving it away with too many unforced errors from the forehand side. That's what Steffi had been doing vs. Seles prior to 1995. Granted in Nadal Federer is facing an athlete on Steffi's level, not Seles'. So, trying to outlast Nadal may be impossible.
     
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  15. julesb

    julesb Banned

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    Seles wishes she could ever dominate Graf like Nadal does Federer. Only in her dreams.
     
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  16. Warriorroger

    Warriorroger Hall of Fame

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    Yes. I wonder who would win. But it would be great to see two players with perfect tennis bodies (Graf and Federer), perfect dancerlike footwork (Graf and Federer) against the brute force and angles (Nadal and Seles).
     
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  17. TheNatural

    TheNatural Legend

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    I think we can compare Seles more to Hingis. Seles started off with a bang but maxed out her game early. She came back very young and still right at the top of the women's game as evidenced by being a runner up and winner in her first 2 slams back, but she just couldn't keep evolving her game. She did try for 8 years though!

    Rafa is a whole different animal, hes continuously evolving every aspect of his game

     
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  18. thalivest

    thalivest Banned

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    I really like Monica but I still dont see the parallel her.
     
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  19. Warriorroger

    Warriorroger Hall of Fame

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    I think the OP is more referring to the parallel of the rivalry. But there are similarities. When Graf and Seles were co-ranked and stepped onto the court together, that sort of electricity, anticipation, excitement for a match, for watching these two talented superstars, only Roger and Rafa come close. Mentally in their prime, Monica and Steffi rarely broke down mentally. They knew how to fight their way back into a match and both were never afraid of losing (which can't be said of the current wta, except the Williams sisters). Roger has to find a way to cme bakc mentally, because he has all the strokes, but I think the wrong game plan. As LDV pointed out in the Seles-Graf match in 1998 (MSG), Seles was whiping the floor with Graf. Seles was playing better that match than prime Seles. Steffi however, hung in, until she detected that little way in and took it and turned it around. Roger when down, hasn't got that ability yet. He should mybe athc that match, because what Seles was throwing at Graf (at their level) is similar to what Rafa did at the AO (at their level).

    If any have time, wtch this match: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ye6uoeG8P0U
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2009
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