Mecir vs. Lendl '87 Lipton Final

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by mrmike, Sep 19, 2012.

  1. mrmike

    mrmike Rookie

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    This was fun to watch. Mecir was an effortless mover. You could call him a pusher, but he really frustrated Lendl in this match.

    http://youtu.be/4_34nkKIUXc
     
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  2. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    Mecir carved Lendl up in that match. It's great to watch. Mecir's win over McEnroe in the 1987 WCT Dallas final was just as good, as were Mecir's numerous demolitions of Wilander.
     
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  3. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    You watch Mecir and wonder how a guy can play so smoothly and make those shots with such ease.
     
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  4. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    True, and also how he would be steadily rallying on the baseline and would then glide very fast to the net to hit a winning volley. That's where he got the "Big Cat" nickname from.
     
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  5. kiki

    kiki Banned

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    His first big win was against Connors in Phily 85 which made him workdwide famous.were there more encounters between both?
     
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  6. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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  7. kiki

    kiki Banned

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  8. slowfox

    slowfox Professional

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    One of my fav matches. Lendl was so frustrated he was blaming stray towels, malfunctioning audio tech, the stadium etc. Mecir even made fun of him for a moment.
     
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  9. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    I loved Mecir's style of play from the first time I saw him.

    He was so smooth and effortless with beautiful footwork (a pre-Fed Fed) that he often looked like he was playing in slow-mo but he wasn't.

    Everything early and graceful, nothing appears rushed or last-second.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4_34nkKIUXc
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TUZf4hATHyM&feature=related
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z2bzlj4ypvw&feature=related
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2012
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  10. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

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    Here are some stats on took on Mecir-Lendl Lipton

    Lendl
    42-98 43% 1st serve
    25-42 59.5% 1st serve pts won
    30-56 54% 2nd serve pts won
    4 aces
    7 doubles
    drew 18 return errors(5 on 2nd serve)
    10 of the return errors he drew from Mecir were bh's
    21 non service winners(13 fh, 3 bh, 4 fhv, 1 bhv)
    2 of 5 on break points

    Mecir
    71-100 70% 1st serve
    48-71 68% 1st serve pts won
    18-29 62% 2nd serve pts won
    4 aces
    1 double
    20 return errors(4 on 2nd serve)
    14 of the return errors he drew were bh's
    25 non service winners(6 fh, 9 bh, 4 fhv, 6 bhv)
    6 of 12 on break points

    stats from espn
    after 2 sets
    Lendl-14 winners, 20 unforced errors
    Mecir-21 winners, 20 unforced errors
     
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  11. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    When serves were successfully returned:

    Mecir was 28 of 51 on 1st serve (55%) and 14 of 24 on 2nd (58%).
    Lendl was 8 of 25 on 1st serve (32%) and 25 of 44 on 2nd (57%).

    So if Mecir could get Lendl's first serve back, he won 2/3 of the time.

    You can see a little of the reason why, in the 2nd point of my clip. Even though I'd classify Lendl's BH error as unforced, he did not expect his serve to come back like that, if at all. Mecir was putting pressure on him by blocking the hard serves back so well.

    Connors used to do that to Lendl a lot. Djokovic is doing it very well today.
     
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  12. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    This stands out. Very unusual to see Lendl, with his aces and service winners included, below 60% success on 1st serve. Some of that can be attributed to his low ace count.

    So in this match his 1st serve success ended up only 5 percentage points ahead of his 2nd serve success.

    In their USO final, by contrast, there were 21 percentage points between Lendl's success on 1st and 2nd (81% vs. 60%), much more what you would expect from his 1st serve even against a great returner. He had 10 aces in that match.

    In their AO final, Lendl's 1st serve was fine again (78%), though he did poorly on 2nd serve (35%). He had 14 aces.

    Out of the 3 matches -- USO, Lipton, AO -- Lendl played the best at the USO. He made 68% of his first serves and won 81% of them: so he sacrificed nothing by getting the first serve in.

    And he had healthy success on 2nd serve.

    In AO he served at only 52%, and had some difficulty on 2nd serve.

    At Key Biscayne he made only 43% of his first serves, and won only 59% of those.
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2012
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  13. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    Published stats

    New York Times:

    Lendl did not think his latest defeat was an omen. Any time he loses, he said, people question whether he is slipping.

    Still, he appeared to have more questions than answers. He has lost the touch on his ground strokes, he said, especially the backhand. Thus, he cannot generate any pace and is committing an unusual number of unforced errors. At the same time, however, he said that hitting with pace is just what Mecir feeds on.

    Lendl also minimized his problems with his serve. He made only 43 percent of his first serves today, double-faulting seven times with just four aces. ''I don't think the serve is that important against Miloslav,'' Lendl said. Yet a big serve leads to easy points, which is never a detriment when playing someone who covers a court like Mecir, keeping the ball in play.

    From the outset, it was apparent this would not be a repeat of the Open final. Mecir broke Lendl in the first game of the match as Lendl made three unforced errors and then double-faulted at break point.

    He broke Mecir in the eighth game to make it, 4-4, but was broken again in the 11th, double faulting twice and hitting two backhands wide. By now, the tempo had been established, and Lendl was playing Mecir's game. The first set took an hour to play as they engaged in prolonged baseline rallies, trading slice backhands.

    Mecir broke Lendl in the first game of the second set, too, changing his own strategy and catching Lendl napping with two volley winners. Mecir actually came to the net more than Lendl, winning 20 of 31 approaches. Lendl won only 10 of 24. It was another indication that Lendl did not feel on top of his game. ​

    Chicago Tribune:

    In five of Mecir's six service breaks, Lendl double-faulted at least once.​
     
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  14. bluetrain4

    bluetrain4 Legend

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    Mecir was awesome, and he beat all the top players of his generation at one time or another. What held him back? He got beat pretty bad in his 2 Slam finals.
     
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  15. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    Hard to say. Mecir was very much a "feel" player, and either played well or didn't, depending on how he felt on the day. Apart from this one brilliant win over Lendl at 1987 Miami (arguably the best win of Mecir's career), Mecir had a very poor record against Lendl. The 1986 US Open final was competitive until Lendl won the first set, and then it was a blowout. In the 1989 Australian Open final, Lendl kept hitting shots down the middle to deny Mecir angles, and Mecir didn't do enough to counteract this and it was again one-sided.

    Also, I have to mention 1988 Wimbledon, when Mecir destroyed Wilander in the quarter finals 6-3, 6-1, 6-3, and was just as dominant in the first 2 sets of his semi final against Edberg in winning them 6-4, 6-2. Mecir's level stayed pretty high even in the following 3 sets even if it had dropped a bit from the first 2 sets, but Edberg was hanging on and started to get more of the crucial points and he eventually came back to win by 4-6, 2-6, 6-4, 6-3, 6-4. When you watch this match, you wonder how Mecir didn't win.

    Mecir's back troubles began in 1988 as well, I believe, which forced his early retirement after 1990 Wimbledon at the age of 26.
     
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  16. ClarkC

    ClarkC Hall of Fame

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    When Lendl beat him in the U.S. Open final, Lendl forgot to get only 43% of his first serves in and hit lots of double faults. Instead, he had a normal serving day.
     
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  17. heathcliff

    heathcliff Rookie

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    did mecir play with a wooden racket ?
     
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  18. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Yes he did and I believe he reached the 1986 US Open final with one. Not 100% certain however.
     
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  19. heathcliff

    heathcliff Rookie

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    you´re right, and he won gold in seoul ´88 and reached the ao-final in ´89 with wood. but did he also played the lipton´s 1987 with wood ?
     
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  20. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    Mecir didn't have the wooden racquet by 1989. Mecir at the 1986 US Open was the last player to get to a major final with a wooden racquet.
     
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  21. beepee1972

    beepee1972 New User

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    Good to watch back. I saw Mecir's son this year, playing in the dutch competition. Same length, same style, they look very alike tennis wise...
     
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  22. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    Karol Kucera was very similar to Miloslav Mecir. Kucera had the nickname "Little Cat".
     
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  23. bluetrain4

    bluetrain4 Legend

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    Was it "pure" wood or one of those wood frames with some graphite inside?
     
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  24. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    I believe that it had more graphite than wood.
     
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  25. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Some have compared Andy Murray to Mecir. I guess I can see a little bit of similarity but in my mind he's really not close in style to Mecir.

    Any comments on this?
     
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  26. kiki

    kiki Banned

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    Mecir was more of a touch player using the pace in order to open angles while Murray generates more pace from himself
    But there are some similarities since they look a bit the same physically.I should add that Murray is the better server and the Big Cat is the better volleyer
     
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  27. paoloraz

    paoloraz New User

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    Mecir played with the same racquet throughtout his whole career. It was a midsize wood Snauwaert with graphite reinforce. It first came out as Snauwaert La Grande wood-graphite mid and then as Snauwaert Brian Gottfried Mid. When it was discontinued, he continued to use this raquet with the "green gold" paintjob of the Snauwaert Graphite Mid (full graphite racquet). He was the last pro using a wood racquet, and it is fun to see that he is...still using it!!! (if you search in the web you may eventually find pics of him hitting some balls with "his" snauwaert even in current days).

    It is a very flexy racquet, very nice from the baseline, accurate, you can put the ball wherever you want, sort of ping-pong tennis... but forget to hit decent volleys with it...
     
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  28. heathcliff

    heathcliff Rookie

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    the paintjob-thing is right. he played becker at the ao 1990 with it.
    but the racket he used in this video looks like the snauwaert orbit. was it also a paintjob?
     
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  29. paoloraz

    paoloraz New User

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    Yeah, the Mecir racquet is the wood composite with some (awful...) paintjob, maybe of the orbit...I have tennis magazines of that period, the mecir racquet is grommetless and with the "usual" diagonal string holes at the top of the head (= is a wood racquet). :)
     
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  30. heathcliff

    heathcliff Rookie

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    thanks for the info... that guy was amazing.
    i love playing with wooden composite rackets myself - you can hit any shots you want.
     
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