Question about Jimmy Connors Raquet

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by damazing, Jun 17, 2009.

  1. damazing

    damazing Rookie

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    I just watched some of the classic Wimbledon match between Connors and Ashe on the Tennis Channel and noticed some really strange looking stringing on Connors racquet. It looked like the strings were pulled through and then around the side of the racquet in a circular loop then back into the next side - was this done to try to retain the tension or increase the tension?

    It almost made me want to try to hit with one of my old racquets from the 70's to see how it felt now. I was somewhat surprised at the number of unforced errors that they both had on volleys and baseline shots.
     
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  2. Kemitak

    Kemitak Semi-Pro

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    Because it was a T2000?
     
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  3. AHSEagles2012

    AHSEagles2012 New User

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    it was a wilson T2000 created by rene lacoste he then sold it to wilson...the frame just looks like that its really to help the balance out and easier to string
     
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  4. damazing

    damazing Rookie

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    Thanks for the info.
     
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  5. Tennis Dunce

    Tennis Dunce Semi-Pro

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    Errr...because they were using racquets with like a 65 sq. in. hoop. :neutral:
     
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  6. damazing

    damazing Rookie

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    It was really apparent when Ashe was trying to reach out for a volley at net. He had no problem putting the volleys away that were hit at his body, but the ones where he had to extend his reach he couldn't get many back over the net.
     
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  7. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    What is amazing is that Connors continued to play that tiny T2000 racquet until about 84!!!

    How he managed to control it, only he knows:)

    (it was quite a high powered racquet the way he set it up, with very small sweet spot)
     
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  8. gpt

    gpt Professional

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    Hey Jimbo. Is it true that Connors lead taped just one side of his T2000. I see you are collecting Connors Racquets, which is the rarest?
     
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  9. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    Hi, I hadn't heard Connors lead taped just one side of his T2000! Any more info on this anyone? Is it really possible to always keep your racquets the right way up in a match?

    The rarest Connors racquets are the ones I havn't got yet:)

    Actually it seems to depend where you live for the wood and metal Wilsons seem rarer in UK, and Slazengers less rare in UK!

    The Estusa's seem hardest to find, athough I do have quite a few now:)

    Always on the lookout for more though!!!
     
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  10. gpt

    gpt Professional

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    Jimmy Connors is an original and an all time great who performed at the highest level for a very long time. He was regularly described as brash and arrogant in the press and i suppose he was. But I always thought he was gracious in defeat. He was very unpopular in Australia when he won the 74 open. He came back in 75 and lost in the final to Newcombe after lots of trash talk via the press in the weeks before. His losing speech was very respectful to Newcombe and he won a lot of respect for himself. A great and relentless competitor who I appreciate more as the years go by.

    Well the lead tape on one side thing was something I read in a book or magazine. I'll try and find it but dont hold your breath. I am in Australia and I am not sure there have been Estusas on sale here. I have a couple of T2000's . One is mint and one is bashed up but I keep it to hit with it occasionally.

    Good luck with your racquet hunting.
     
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  11. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    Thanks mate:)

    I too will now look into the lead tape thing, and see what I can find out! Will post whatever I find here.

    Connors was obviously my favourite player. He was always exciting to watch, giving 100% and had one of the best backhand return of serves ever:)

    I'm finding more Connors Estusas all the time, mainly from the US, they seem to be really well made quality racquets as well!!!

    Would like to find many more:)
     
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  12. Mick

    Mick Legend

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    for the full effect, jimbo, you have to got to get the jimmy connors clothes too :)
     
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  13. Cup8489

    Cup8489 Legend

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    and the trademark hair, along with the 'uhh' half-grunt he always did. i love imitating connors, but my T3000 isn't as cool as the 2000 series was.
     
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  14. Mick

    Mick Legend

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    haha. some years ago, there was this one guy whom i would play with every day, his idol was jimmy connors. he did everything like jimmy connors and he got the jimmy connors 2hbh down almost perfectly. I had some great matches with him, most of them were 5 setters :)
     
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  15. Mick

    Mick Legend

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    this is what I was talking about, the full effect :D

    [​IMG]
     
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  16. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    I do have some of his 80's shirts, yes:)

    Would really like some of the shirts he wore in the 70's, if anyone has some they'd like to part with, let me know:)
     
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  17. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    I had the same hair in 1980, but I was only 8:)

    (And the coolest is the C-1)
     
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  18. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    Hahahaha:)

    Did he give you the first 2 sets, looked miserable, play one superb backhand return winner down the line, fist pumped for 2 minutes, and then play every point like it was his last, and beat you in 5 sets:)
     
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  19. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    Great stuff as ever Mick:)

    Yes I have a couple of shirts from that time!!!
     
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  20. Mick

    Mick Legend

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    this guy did a lot of things to get into my head. when the games were close or about to be decided, he would bounce the ball for a long time like djokovic does long before the world ever heard of djokovic.

    for a while he was at my exact level. all of our matches were very close and tight and then one day he asked me to play for tennis balls and that's when I began to have a winning record over him. i guess it's because he took more risks with his style of play, so when wager was involved it affected him more than me and he never was able to regain the evenly split head to head record that he had against me :)
     
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  21. GS

    GS Professional

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    I remember Connors playing the Estusa widebody with the lead-taped side up only. I also remember Connors saying at the time, "I shoulda gone to a mid-sized frame long ago---I would of won more tournaments."
    Anyone want to buy my T2000 with a 4-1/2 grip?
    My local shop still has a T3000 on display---it was for sale years ago. Good ole boy, Renee Richards, used to be its owner.
     
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  22. Mick

    Mick Legend

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    i know at our level, when you beat other players with a t-2000 or t-3000 they would an unbelief look on their faces. can't imagine what it was like for JC's opponents in the graphite era.
     
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  23. Z-Man

    Z-Man Professional

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    There is a guy in my area who still uses a T-2000, and he plays at a pretty high level. Played for a good D-2 school when he was in his late 30s and won a lot of matches with it. (This was only about 10 years ago.) At one point he was one of the top ranked open players in the south. I've played him a few times, and there's nothing wrong with that racquet. It hits a heavy ball.
     
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  24. Mick

    Mick Legend

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    the bad thing about it is when you have to get it strung. my stringer said it is not easy to put string on this racquet.
     
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  25. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    Well it's amazing what motivates some people:)

    Until I joined a tennis club, I would always suggest loser pays for the court. That was enough to get me going!!!
     
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  26. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    Like I said, set up correctly, it's a really powerful racquet!!!

    But controlling it is another matter:)

    I gave up trying really quickly like most people, that's why it's easy to find Mint condition T2000's:)
     
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  27. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    The stringer who taught me to string also said it was his least favorite of any racquet he had ever strung. Not a surprise when you see one!
     
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  28. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    Imagine mounting this ugly stick? Remember the T-5000?
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2009
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  29. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    It's really not ugly!!!

    Classic design I reckon:)

    As for the T5000, another great racquet, I'd like a NEW one of these if anyone has one? And a NEW T4000 also:)
     
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  30. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    My bad, the T-2000 was so flexible that calling it an ugly stick meant this. http://www.shakespeare-fishing.com/products/ugly.shtml
     
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  31. Lefty78

    Lefty78 Professional

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    I cannot confirm Connors' lead tape setup on the T 2000, but GS is absolutely correct that Jimmy leaded his Estusa frames on the 'up' side only.
     
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  32. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    I never actually saw a t5000! Gotta love that..uh...crossbar...though! lol
     
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  33. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    Back-in-the-day there was some preference between the T-2000s that were welded and some that were braised. Anyone familiar with the differences and why one was preferred over the other.
     
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  34. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    I don't really know what you mean by braised?

    I'm aware that the weld at the bottom of the hoop was notorious for breaking, and I remember Wilson fixing this somehow? I really don't know to be honest:)
     
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  35. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    By the way if anyone is reading this and actually has a NEW T4000 and T5000 lying around somewhere:)

    I'd really like one of each, I'll pay more than you'd think for them as well!!!
     
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  36. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    Yes, that weld. Met players that preferred the older racquets with the weld. Believe Connors tried to trackdown the old racquets.
     
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  37. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    "new" as in totally unused?? Yikes, good luck! haha!
     
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  38. PBODY99

    PBODY99 Hall of Fame

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    The first production runs of t-2000 had a welded throat, they played a little differently than the later version. Jimmy only used the welded version, which is why he had trouble finding frames towards the end of his run with the t-2000.
    He did in fact apply lead tape to the edge of the racket, which he always kept in the up position.
    I saw him try to use the special Pro Staff, leaded the same way at the Philadelphia Indoor Championships, Jan 1985/85 and smash all of the frames in his bag as he went down the tunnel after an early round lost.
     
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  39. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    Yep:)

    NEW T4000 and T5000, totally unused:shock:

    Would really like these to go with my NEW T2000 and T3000!!!

    Anyone with these, please let me know!!!
     
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  40. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    Was this the smaller headed Pro Staff???

    I'd really like more details about this racquet:)
     
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  41. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    Impressed you found unusued t2000/3000, well done! I couldn't do it. One day, I'd snap and have to hit with them! haha! ;-)
     
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  42. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    #42
  43. Mick

    Mick Legend

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    i bought two new t3000 from the auction site some time ago. the sellers shipped them in the original wilson box complete with 30 year old dust. i was so impressed :D
     
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  44. VGP

    VGP Legend

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    Connors used to add lead tape to his frames at 12 and 9 o'clock (9 being the up side). One side of the racket face would be the forehand/serve side, the other the backhand. I remember hearing that he didn't weigh his frames exactly. He just added it until it felt right.

    Some pics over the years:

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
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  45. VGP

    VGP Legend

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    Even on the yellow Estusa:

    [​IMG]
     
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  46. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    Thanks, great stuff:)

    So this sort of goes back to the old days, when players frequently did this, I have an old Fred Perry racquet, marked in this way (use one side for forehand etc)!!!
     
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  47. jaggy

    jaggy G.O.A.T.

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    Fred Perry made racquets? Any pics anyone?
     
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  48. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    They are old Slazengers!!!

    Loads of them around, but difficult to find in excellent condition, for example, mine isn't:(

    Unfortunately I can't post photos (computer problem).
     
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