One match (if won) would completely change a player's place in tennis history?

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by bluetrain4, Nov 29, 2007.

  1. bluetrain4

    bluetrain4 Legend

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    Almost all I can think of involve a player completing a career slam.

    For example:

    Edberg winning the 1989 French Final
    McEnroe winning the 1984 French Final
    Lendl winning one of his 2 Wimbledon finals

    Hingis winning the 1997 French Final - results in a Grand Slam. Doesn't move her up much in terms of overall Slams, but obviously would be huge.

    Evert winning one of those early to mid 80s Wimbledon or US Open finals vs. Navratilova. Would change the singles slam totals from 18-18, to 19-17 in favor of Evert. Of course, the same would be true in reverse for any final that Martina lost to Chris.

    On a lesser note, Sabatini or Conchita Martinez winning one of their other Slam finals - would take them out of the one-slam wonder category. Sabatini, though, had the morre realistic chance with the close losses to Graf at the USO and Wimbledon. Martinez was beaten rather handily in her other 2 Slam finals.

    Obviously any player who lost in a Slam final that never won a final- but there's too many of those to list.
     
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  2. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

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    If von Cramm would have beaten Budge in the 1937 DC, after leading 4-1 in the fifth, he wouldn't have been put into prison by the Gestapo. Germany would have won the DC, and maybe Budge wouldn't have won the Grand Slam in 1938, with von Cramm present at RG. If Ashe hadn't beaten Connors at Wim 1975 (and showed a way to beat Connors), maybe Jimbo would have dominated the scene for the next 5 years.
     
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  3. Wuornos

    Wuornos Professional

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    I always think a huge emphasis is put on the Grand Slam by the tennis community. I also would go along with this as while I don't value the Grand Slam in itself, I do value dominanance. And while crude the Grand Slam, whether Calendar year or not is the most widely recognised indicator of dominance.

    With this in mind for the open era I would say the major finals lost by Roger Federer in the 2006 and 2007 French Opens. Had he won these I doubt there would be any debate regarding Men's GOAT right now.

    Also Andre Agassi's Wimbledon Final of 1999 which would have allowed him a none calendar year Grand Slam Ending in the Australian Open of 2000.

    On the Women's side looking to the same criteria for the open era Monica Seles loss in the 1992 Wimbledon Final to Steffi Graff stopped what would have been a Calendar year Grand Slam for Monica. While Chris Evert's loss to Navratilova in the 1982 Wimbledon Final stopped what would have become a none Calendar Year Grand Slam for Chrissie ending at the French in 1983.

    As you have already identified Hingis at the French Open of 1997.

    All of these results would have influenced by opinion within the confines of increased levels of domination during their peak years but I believe they would have had an even greater effect upon how these players would be viewed by the tennis fans.

    Nice post Bluetrain.

    Regards

    Tim
     
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  4. msunderland71

    msunderland71 New User

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    If Federer had won the French Open final this year, it would allow him to have a better claim as GOAT (13 separate slams + 1 grand slam). But maybe not the biggest change in status.
    If Lendl had won his 1986 Wimbledon final he would have won all the slams that year (Australian not held in '86). Not a grand slam, but close.
    Considering Lendl's lack of a Wimbledon title is the most talked about in terms of "the one that eluded him" I'd say it would have had a greater effect than Edberg winning the French in '89 or McEnroe in '84.

    Now that I think about it - Malavai Washington winning his Wimbledon final in 1996 vs. Krajicek would lift him tremendously. Yes - any outsider getting to a grand slam final just once would be the one to pick.
     
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  5. msunderland71

    msunderland71 New User

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    Shame on me. I should have picked my countryman Chris Lewis in his Wimbledon final in 1983. Possibly an even bigger underdog vs. McEnroe than Washington was vs. Krajicek. Chris was a legend over here for his effort, but to win would have made people remember him better (Chris who I hear you say?)!
     
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  6. tzinc

    tzinc Semi-Pro

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    Federer losing the French is HUGE!
     
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  7. OrangeOne

    OrangeOne Legend

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    I don't think it's possible to go past Fed at the French or Lendl at Wimbledon, at least not in the last 30 years.
     
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  8. HyperHorse

    HyperHorse Banned

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    How about Sampras winning one or 2 of his lost US Open finals?
    Roger would have to win 1 or 2 slams more to break his record..

    On a lighter note, how's my new avatar? :p
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2007
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  9. SgtJohn

    SgtJohn Rookie

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    Funny question, the only weak point of the approach, is that we assume that if the player won THE match, everything afterwards would have gone as it did in 'our world'. Winning this very significant match coud add pressure (especially when a player is on his way to a Grand Slam), and prevent him from winning subsequent tournaments... Anyway, as I said, this is mostly for fun.

    -About Federer, it's obviously very early to tell. Given his sudden bursts of genius in significant matches and maybe Nadal's physical problems, it's not very unlikely for him to win one or even two Roland Garros. In this case, his lost finals wouldn't look as career-defining of course.

    -I agree with McEnroe at RG '84, and I would add Borg at the US Open '78 and '80. If they had won these matches, both of them would have been on their way to a Grand Slam, as they would probably have played in Australia, on grass, a surface on which they seemed invincible on these respective years... Mac is currently not in the GOAT discussion but would obviously be with a Grand Slam. Borg is in this discussion, but with a GS the decision would be between him and Laver.

    Then, chronologically:

    -Tilden in the 1927 RG final against Lacoste (he had match points). A win gives him the fourth of the most significant titles at the times (RG, Wimbledon, Forest Hills, Davis Cup), and 1926-1930 don't look as years when he was totally dominated by the Mousquetaires anymore.

    -obviously, Crawford and Hoad's finals at Forest Hills. A win would have meant a Grand Slam, and a dramatic change in these players' place in history.

    -Von Cramm in the Wimbledon final, 1936. Unfortunately this great player is not much remembered today. A RG-Wimbledon double in 1936 would have changed that... Or maybe simply if the Na-zis [strange thing, the forum don't seem to allow writing this word directly...] had left him alone (three more shots at RG, and one very serious shot at Wimbledon in 1939 (he beat eventual Wimbledon winner Riggs in the Queens event, 61 60)).

    -1969 US Open final. In 1968-1969, Roche looked very much like Laver's heir. An injury in 1970 prevented him from winning a Slam in the Open Era. Winning at Forest Hills would have been very prestigious, stopping Laver's way towards the Grand Slam, just like Perry and Rosewall had done in the past.

    -Rosewall's 1970 and 1974 Wimbledon finals. The 1970 final would give him a SW19-US Open double and make him, at age 36, a very clear #1 for that year, as well as a career slam. A win in 1974 would give him a Career Slam and an unbeatable record in longevity for the Open Era.

    -Nastase in Wimbledon '72. He was a brilliant player, but could never really focus to reach his full potential. A Wim-US Open double in '72 would mean a really dominant year, and change our view of this player.

    -1978 RG Final: obviously, keeping his RG title against Borg would have totally changed the way we see Vilas, and his '77 title would seem totally legitimate, retrospectively...But it wasn't even close.

    -1981 RG: Lendl beating Borg would make him look like a very gifted young player, rather than a late bloomer/choker, and people would remember more of his great '81 and '82 seasons.

    -Wimbledon 1986. There was no AO that year, so Lendl's year would be regarded as a Grand Slam year, all the more as he won Boca West, 128-players, best-of-5 tournament in march.

    -Jim Courier is a good player, but unfortunately his fate is to be forgotten over time due to weak credentials compared to his American contemporaries. A win in either RG or Wimbledon in '93 would give him a 5th Slam as well as second year at the top, which would have made it for him.

    -1995 US Open. A win by Agassi gives him the top spot, and a nearly perfect year on hardcourt (AO, USO, Key Biscayne, Canada, Cincy, etc.).

    -Marcelo Rios at the '98 AO. A Grand Slam win plus his 3 Masters Series and good showing in tournaments would give him the year-end top spot and one of the most dominant years in the 90s.

    -Marat Safin at the 2002 AO? This is just speculation, but a win could have given him more confidence for years to come.Anyway, with Safin you can't get much beyond speculation...

    -Montreal 2003: Not career-defining at all, but if Federer had won this match (in a 3rd set tie-breaker!), he would've got the top spot for 2003. As he's on his way to breaking every record, an extra year at #1 would've been a nice addition and a shot at breaking Sampras's 6-year streak.

    -Roddick in 2004 Wimbledon. I don't see him winning it in the future, unfortunately he is likely to stay a 1 slam-winner.

    -Hewitt in the 2005 AO. A win gives him a 'non-clay' career-Slam and makes him a national hero.

    Jonathan
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2007
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  10. OrangeOne

    OrangeOne Legend

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    ^^ Monster list, but the whole "what would have then happened" is irrelevant for Fed. He needs the career slam far more than the calendar year slam, and when he played his two (to date) French finals, he already had the other 3.

    He'd have retired a legend if he'd won this year's French and no other match thereafter....
     
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  11. NadalandFedererfan

    NadalandFedererfan Banned

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    Federer winning 1 of the last 2 French Open finals.

    Nadal winning 1 of the last 2 Wimbledon finals.

    Edberg winning the 1989 French Open final, he would be rated atleast as highly as Agassi today, maybe higher.

    Agassi winning the 1995 U.S Open final with Sampras. He would have been much more motivated the next 3 years were he wasted a large chunk of his physical prime, and instead later refocused and had alot of his actual prime past his physical peak so not what it could have been.

    Rosewall winning 1 of his Wimbledon finals lost.

    Lendl winning that Wimbledon final he lost to Cash.

    Seles winning Wimbledon final over Graf in 1992.

    Hingis winning French Open final vs Majoli in 1997.

    Henin winning Wimbledon semis with Bartoli this year.
     
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  12. gsquicksilver

    gsquicksilver Semi-Pro

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    if michael chang would have beaten pete sampras in the 1996 us open final, he would have been the first asian #1 in the world.
     
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  13. GS

    GS Professional

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    Hey, what about the guys that almost won THEE Grand Slam? Connors won 3 Slams in '74 but was banned from playing the French. And Wilander won 3 Slams in '88 but lost to Mecir in the quarters at Wimbledon.
     
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  14. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    With Connors there's no one match that you can point to; he would have had to win 7 matches in Paris, and I don't think he would have won. Same with Wilander, if he had beaten Mecir; I don't think he would have won the tournament.
     
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  15. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    All true, and it would also change our perception of the Sampras-Agassi rivalry. Agassi would have a win over Sampras at one of the two big events, W and USO. It's a little like Chris Evert winning a final against Martina Navratilova at W/USO (though she did have semifinal wins over her).
     
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  16. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    Arthur's win did have a huge effect, no doubt. But I think 5 years is going too far. Jimmy's weaknesses were going to come out before then.
     
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  17. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    If Lendl had won the 1983 USO final -- he had 3 sets points in the third set -- he would not have the most infamous of his "choker" performances. He would then have only two Slam finals lost at the outset of his career: Borg at RG, which is understandable, and which no one faults him for even today (it went five sets); and Connors at the '82 USO. And that one he would "make good" by reversing the result the next year. He would then have gone to Australia in December and would surely have been a different player than the one who went down meekly to Wilander in straight sets. In short, there would be a lot less for us to point to as "choker" performances, and more good stuff to set against it.

    It would have made some difference even if he had just not double-faulted when he had set point in the third, and not given up in the fourth set.
     
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  18. bluetrain4

    bluetrain4 Legend

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    True, but I literally meant one match. Wilander for example, if he would have won his Wimbledon quarterfinal in 1988, would have simply been a semfinalist.

    Your examples are good ones, but speak more to which one tournament (entailing more than one match that the player didn't win) (if won) would completely change a player's place in tennis history. This would expand the discussion greatly.
     
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  19. bluetrain4

    bluetrain4 Legend

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    I like this answer. Like I said initially, the easiest examples to think of are matches that would complete the career Slam or the calendar year Grand Slam. Good to see something different.
     
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  20. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    If Lendl had won the 1988 USO final against Wilander (and he came very close), he would have 4 straight USO's, 9 Slams overall, a fourth straight year as #1 (it would have broken Connors' record of 159 consecutive weeks at the top, a record broken only this year by Federer). His record in USO finals would be 4-4, and in Slams overall 9-10.

    The effect on Wilander would be even greater, because it was his only win at W or the U.S. He would drop down to six Slams, and we'd remember him as the guy that lost three Slams finals to Lendl in 1987-88 including two straight at Flushing Meadow; the guy who could not beat Lendl in any tour match after 1985. Wilander's win in '88 was in many ways his greatest victory and the culmination of his career. That match made him #1; previously he had been regarded as the guy who wanted to "backdoor" his way into #1 (as I think John McEnroe put it); and that reputation might have stuck if he hadn't gotten to #1, even though he did work hard and produced many good performances in '87 and '88.

    On the flip side, maybe Wilander would not have dropped off the radar if he had lost that match in '88. If loss did not discourage him too much, he might have continued working and stuck around longer.

    Also: Becker's win over Lendl at the '89 USO would take on more luster. He, not Wilander, would have stopped Lendl at the Open and removed him from the top spot (though he could not do it on the computer; Lendl retained that until 1990, and if he had not lost it briefly in 1988 his record streak at the top would still not be broken by Federer).

    Similar things can be said about the 2001 Wimbledon final: it would have been huge for Rafter, and it would have devastated Goran, who had no other Slam titles. Goran would then be the guy that was 0-4 in Wimbledon finals.
     
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2007
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  21. bluetrain4

    bluetrain4 Legend

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    Great answer and analysis.
     
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  22. bluetrain4

    bluetrain4 Legend

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    While not earth shattering, I'd nominate Edberg's 1990 loss to Lendl at the AO final, where he had to default because of an abdominal strain. He had all the momentum when the injury occurred, winning the first set and I think up a break in the second. He very easily could have won that match as he was a difficult matchup for Lendl (in fact, he leads 14-13 head to head). If he won the match, Lendl, McEnroe, Wilander, and Edberg are all tied at 7 Slams and puts each of them in a different light. Also puts Connors, with 8 Slams, ahead of that group, instead of tied with Lendl.

    Obviously, all of these examples assume that everything else would have remained the same for the rest of the players' careers, which it probably wouldn't, but it's fun nonetheless.
     
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  23. pabloJD

    pabloJD Rookie

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    If I remember well, Gabriela Sabatini was one match away of being #1 in the world. If she had defeated Monica Seles in their 1992 (or '91?) French Open semifinal, she'd have reached #1 in the WTA Rankings. She lost and was not even able to be #2, ever (Seles, Graf and Sabatini were very tight at the top 3 at that time).
     
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  24. SgtJohn

    SgtJohn Rookie

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    I'm not sure Lendl would have been #1, Wilander would still have the AO, Roland Garros, a USO final, Wimbledon QF, and some great tournaments, including Key Biscayne. That amounts to quite a lot of points...
     
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  25. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

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    If Edberg won the French he wouldn't be ranked GOAT or something. I doubt he'd be even top 10 on most lists. You need to dominate the game as well to get high on that list.

    But Borg winning the US Open? Even if didn't win Australia? He would be elevated to another level.

    In terms of what-ifs, its a shame Mac didn't play more majors. It seems rather bizarre he could be tied with Wilander in total majors won, considering the huge gap in the domination factor.

    But I think Rosewall winning Wimbledon, esp in the Open Era, would probably be the biggest single win in terms of how historians(& I mean real historians, not TV commentators who's level of knowledge on tennis history is rather suspect) views him today. Too often he is spun as Laver's Agassi or something, when his peak level was as high as anyone in history. He had to play even more of his prime pre-open era than Laver did, but Laver got a chance to still be close enough in his prime when the Open Era begun to win the Calendar Grand Slam.

    Despite that, Rosewall was able to win 3 of the 4 majors in the Open Era.

    If he won Wimbledon, he would have joined Agassi & Laver as the only players to win all 4 slams in the Open Era. That, combined with his pre-Open era record(complete domination for many years) would have put him much higher on many lists.

    But Wimbledon was(& I suppose still is) so much bigger in importance than all the others slams in the 60s/70s, if he just won Wimbledon in the 70s instead of the US Open, that alone may have elevated him as well.
     
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  26. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    True, I only meant on the computer; I hadn't thought at all about who might be the true #1 of 1988, the year's best player.
     
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  27. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

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    The ranking system was quite different back then(one day I will list all the points' averages listed by month for a year in the 80s for certain players, so maybe hops can make sense of it)

    The fascinating thing about Wilander's year in 1988, was that he didn't get to #1(even for just one week) at any point in that year until he won the US Open!

    Can you imagine a player today winning 2 majors, being fairly consistent at all other events throughout the year & not getting to #1 until that late in the year?

    The gap between Lendl & the field was much bigger through most of '88 than people realize(at least according to the computer of the time)
     
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  28. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    I'm just going on the fact that the #1 ranking on the computer hung on the USO final, and presuming that Lendl would have stayed #1 for the rest of the year if he had won the Open ... but that may not be a correct assumption. He did have surgery after the Open and did not play until the Masters.
     
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  29. Wuornos

    Wuornos Professional

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    That's really interesting Moose. The DOT Ratings put Wilander at #1 after the French Open and he stayed there for a year. Since I redid the methodology on DOT there seems to be a reasoanble level of correlation between DOT and the official rankings. I wonder why it was so different for this year? Is this possibly a volume effect or an imbalance between weightings bewteen major and lesser events.

    Curious nevertheless.

    Regards

    Tim
     
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  30. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

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    Just looked up Lendl's activity for '88, he only played 10 events(had injury problems) that year.

    He played no events between the US Open & Year end Masters, if he played a full indoor season in the fall that year & did well(which he historically did do, plus Wilander played very poorly in the fall that year), I think he could have ended '88 #1(with no majors to Wilander's 3)

    A US Open win could have put him out of reach for Wilander.
     
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  31. pabloJD

    pabloJD Rookie

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    Wilander didn't have consistent results at lesser tournaments, and that decreased his average. He lost early in Orlando, Montecarlo, Rome and Boston. Add to that first round losses in Scottsdale and Stockholm, and R16 at Frankfurt from the previous year and that's why he needed the US Open to surpass Lendl.
     
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  32. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

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    also don't forget the many majors won by players that had to face match point.

    Rod Laver had to save a match point in the QF of the '62 French. He went on to win the Calendar Grand Slam that year.
     
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  33. s_andrean

    s_andrean Rookie

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    Sorry to be so british, but why has no-one metioned 2001 Wimbledon?

    Henman vs. Goran semi final...

    That was his best chance IMHO
     
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  34. 10nisDude~

    10nisDude~ Semi-Pro

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    wut if andre agassi won that match against fererro...and versed andy roddick in the final....wut wud happen????
     
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  35. firstservethenvolley

    firstservethenvolley Banned

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    I agree. Henman,had he won one of his semis, would've changed his place in tennis history.
     
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  36. KANZA

    KANZA Rookie

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    Agassi winning the French in 1990 or 1991. I think those losses devastated him. He would not have had the hunger to win Wimbledon in 1992, and may have never won it at all, thus not having the 'Grand Slam'. He probably would have gone on to win five French Opens.
     
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  37. Gorecki

    Gorecki G.O.A.T.

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    Anyone said the loss of Sampras to Krajicec at WIMB?
    that would be the highest landmark of tennis history imo...
     
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  38. Nickognito

    Nickognito Rookie

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    Seles not playing in Hamburg (or losing or winning by walkover in few games)

    c.
     
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  39. AndrewD

    AndrewD Legend

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    bluetrain,

    The most obvious one to me is Navratilova losing her semi-final to Helena Sukova at the 1984 Australian Open. Navratilova had done all the hard work by winning the French Open (her stumbling block in 1983: a match you could almost exchange in signficance for the 84 Aus) and was at her most dominant. A win would have put her into the final against Evert and overwhelming favouritism for the title. Winning a genuine Grand Slam would have made that the argument for her as the greatest of all time even stronger. Her loss, however, puts her very clearly behind Court, Graf and Connolly because, on the two occasions it mattered most, she couldn't master her nerves. Even Court, who was prone to the jitters at Wimbledon, was able to keep it together when it really mattered.

    Personally, I don't think that Mats Wilander's place in history would be changed if he hadn't won the US Open. Wimbledon, now that would have been an entirely different kettle of fish. For similar reasons, I don't believe that Ivan Lendl's status would have been increased if he'd won the 88 US Open. However, if he'd won either the 86 or 87 Wimbledon we'd most certainly have to reassess his place in history. Same goes for McEnroe at the 84 French. If he'd won that it would have made it much harder to know where he stands (also interesting to speculate what would have happened if he'd gone on to the Aus with 3 majors).

    Oh, and I wonder what would have happened had Bjorn Borg won either the 1978 or 1980 US Opens. Three majors in the hand, only one more needed for the Grand Slam and him at the top of his game - who'd have bet against him? If Borg had won those two extra events he'd have 13 majors, 6 on clay, 6 on grass, 1 on hard courts and 1 Grand Slam. Could you rate anyone above him - even Laver?
     
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  40. OrangeOne

    OrangeOne Legend

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    Really? I mean, sure it's Sampras losing at Wimbledon, but he finished with a 4-6 record against Richard, clearly someone who gave him trouble.

    That said: I suppose a loss is a loss, and Sampras losing at Wimbledon is always a story, so I see your point.

    OT, but I wonder if Sampras was perhaps lucky he only ran into Krajicek once at Wimbledon?
     
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  41. Gorecki

    Gorecki G.O.A.T.

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    dude; you missed my point. i was talking about the possibility of winning wimb 8 years in a row if he had won that match...
     
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  42. OrangeOne

    OrangeOne Legend

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    Well, I wasn't completely sure if *that* was the year, but I had a hunch it was. So I didn't miss it as much as I wasn't sure of it :)

    I'm not sure it'd be the highest landmark in tennis history - well, not in my book, I mean, I think Sampras winning the French (or Lendl winning Wimbledon) would have been much more significant than Sampras just proving himself a little better at Wimbledon.
     
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  43. my_forehand

    my_forehand Professional

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    haha.HA!
    Speaking of Roddick,
    Wonder what would have happened if he won the '04 final at Wimbledon against Fed
     
    #43
  44. noeledmonds

    noeledmonds Professional

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    Looking at open-era ATP players only I have these thoughts.

    Firstly there are the obvious choices of matches that complete players' Grand Slam or Career Grand Slam. All of these matches (such as Federer's FO losses or Lendl's Wimbledon losses) if won would surely change the players' image dramatically. Also the matches that would have virtually complete a players' career slam when the AO was not so important, such as Borg's 4 USO final losses and McEnroe's 1984 FO loss.

    Equally players who did complete The Grand Slam (or Career Grand Slam) would have their legacy reduced if they had failed to. If Laver had lost his 1969 5 setter to Newcombe at Wimlbedon then he would no doubt have less respect despite his other Grand Slam. Agassi would lose much credibility without his 1992 Wimbledon title or without his 1999 French Open title.

    Other matches are speculation really but here are my thoughts on other seemingly important matches:

    1975: Ashe's shock win over Connors at Wimbledon surely ended Connors's dominance of the game and despite his longitivity afterwards he never achieved any where near the success of the previous year.

    1981: McEnroe beat Borg at Wimbledon. If Borg had won this match then perhaps he would not have retired the next year or perhaps he would have managed to beat McEnroe at the USO later in the year.

    1995: Agassi loses to Sampras in the USO final. Had Agassi won this match he would have secured the year end number 1 ranking I believe. Sampras would not have 6 consecutive year end number 1 rankings. Perhaps this would have stopped Agassi's tempory collapse over the next few years. Agassi would have an the impressive hard court season and would have owned Sampras this year (head to head for 1995 would have be 4-1 and 2-0 in grand slam finals).

    2006: Federer beats Nadal at Wimbeldon. Federer was being dominated by Nadal at this time. Nadal had beat Federer in 4 finals earlier this year, inlcuding on hard court. Had Nadal won this it might have been the start of a world number 1 take over for Nadal. However as it turns out this Wimbledon win for Federer started to turn the rivallry around.
     
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  45. Gorecki

    Gorecki G.O.A.T.

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    Puerto y Galgo....
    OK... fair enough!
     
    #45
  46. AndrewD

    AndrewD Legend

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    I wouldn't rate that near the highest mark in tennis history. Of infinitely greater significance (the most significant, in my opinion) is the ban on professionals playing at Wimbledon. Without that in place I truly believe that Ken Rosewall would have won over 20 majors and Laver would have won close to 20. Sampras's 14 and whatever Federer ends with would still be huge achievements but they would be seen in a totally different light.

    The biggest 'losses' in tennis history are the 19 years Pancho Gonzalez lost, the 12 years Ken Rosewall lost and the 5 years Rod Laver lost due to the ban on professionals.
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2007
    #46
  47. hyogen

    hyogen Hall of Fame

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    Federer at any Roland Garros :p

    >:F

    Sampras at his one semi-finals of the Roland Garros
     
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  48. superman1

    superman1 Legend

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    Yeah, I'm going to go with Sampras v. Kafelnikov French Open SF. Probably the biggest match ever lost by a player when you think about it, because he probably would have been able to beat Stich in the final. He was 4-5 against Stich, but the guy knew how to win Grand Slam finals. Second to that is McEnroe v. Lendl 1984 French Open final. And then I'd say Agassi v. Sampras 1995 US Open final. Agassi was on top of the world at that point, and then promptly went careening down when he realized that his best wasn't enough to beat Sampras at his best.
     
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  49. CollegeBound

    CollegeBound Rookie

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    Please tell me you're joking. You honestly reckon that's the biggest match ever lost by a player? Mac's loss to Lendl I can buy, but Sampras being demolished by Kafelnikov (he even bageled Pete in the second set), no way.
     
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  50. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

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    The one big win, a player may have regretted, may be Becker's first Wimby in 1985 at age 17. It came too soon, for his own sake, leaving a big psychological burden on the young guy. I think, if Boris would have reached the semi and won Wimbledon a year later, his whole career would have been much smoother and he would have eventually won around 10 majors.
     
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