Sampras on post-2002 Grass of Wimbledon

Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by Prisoner of Birth, Jan 10, 2013.

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How many Wimbledons would Sampras have won on "Slow Grass"?

  1. 0

    8.3%
  2. 1

    2.1%
  3. 2

    8.3%
  4. 3

    25.0%
  5. 4

    14.6%
  6. 5

    18.8%
  7. 6

    4.2%
  8. 7

    10.4%
  9. 8

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  10. 9

    8.3%
  1. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    And the article I posted says that 2002 was the first. What we can say for sure is that it was 2002 Wimbledon that had all the controversy about the playing conditions, serve and volleyers struggling, baseliners going deep into the tournament, Henman calling the grass "the slowest court I've played on all year" etc. The playing conditions at 2001 Wimbledon were clearly no different to the immediate preceeding years.
     
  2. borg number one

    borg number one Legend

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    Mustard, I'll go with the Time article, but I agree that the two articles do contradict each other. For whatever reason, perhaps it was at least some moderate rain, the grass just didn't produce that "higher bounce" that is typical of the new grass at Wimbledon. The surface has definitely become harder and more durable though, which is a good thing. Players used to talk about how sore they would get at Wimbledon due to the really low bounces (bending low), but that has changed somewhat. I think the dryness in 2002 versus 2001 probably made a significant difference there as to the success of baseliners throughout the tournament and then many probably "learned the formula" there so to speak.
     
  3. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    I don't remember 2001 Wimbledon being any wetter than 2002 Wimbledon aside from the Ivanisevic vs. Henman drama. The Nalbandian vs. Malisse semi final in 2002 finished on the Saturday, with lack of daylight and rain playing a part.

    At 2002 Wimbledon, we had upsets like Agassi losing to Srichaphan, Safin losing to O. Rochus, Sampras losing to Bastl(!), Henman struggling all the way through to the semi finals, baseliners like Nalbandian, Malisse, Lapentti and Sa going deep into the tournament. I knew something was strange when Malisse beat Rusedski and Krajicek in succession, because Rusedski and Krajicek were in very good serve and volley form and it was Wimbledon. Rusedski had produced what I thought was a career best performance when he destroyed Roddick in the third round.

    If there's any doubt, I just think this evidence shows the reality.
     
  4. borg number one

    borg number one Legend

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    Mustard, I hear you, but I just think it was just a combination of more rain during the 2001 (at least sometime before the SF/F, I don't know) tourney and the 2002 event plus, you know how players are..they learn from experience and by testing a new surface. With the 2002 event, the word may have really been out and baseliners were able to impose their preferred style of play at the event. Anyway, let's agree to disagree about the timing then, we're not going to change our respective positions. I had a chance to visit the AELTC for the first time this past year and seeing those courts was a dream come true. The Tour there is pretty cool. Now I just need to go there and actually watch some matches during the "fortnight". Anyway, interesting discussion. I actually thought Malisse could be very dangerous for years to come when I saw him play in 2002 and go deep. I liked his game. A decade ago. Time flies.
     
  5. merlinpinpin

    merlinpinpin Hall of Fame

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    Which is why he was so dominant on clay, I guess. :roll:

    Back to the OP, 3-5 seems about fair--although 5 might be a tad optimistic for Sampras in today's conditions.

    I can see him going 3/1 against Roddick at Wimbledon, and probably no more than 3/2 vs Hewitt on slow grass (maybe even 2/3). Starting from 2007, Nadal would obviously become a huge threat for him, as would Djokovic and Murray a few years later. Plus, there's also the (not so offside) chance that he would be totally unable to deal with a big server's serve (say, Isner or Karlovic), like he did with Krajicek, and that could result in an early round upset. So yeah, I guess 3-5.

    Good news for him, though--from 2003 on, Bastl was cearly out of his prime, so he wouldn't have rosolled Sampras out of Wimbledon multiple times in a row. ;)
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2013
  6. Blocker

    Blocker Semi-Pro

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    Pete was an extremely agressive player and I'm sure he would have no problems handling Nadal at Wimnbledon. I just picture Nadal being a fish out of water against Sampras because I see Sampras taking Nadal completely out of his comfort zone.

    Sampras is no Murray.
     
  7. Blocker

    Blocker Semi-Pro

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    And it was just the once, between 1993 and 2000. Nadal at the FO has also lost just the once in 8 years. Thanks for confirming Sampras' total domination at Wimbledon. One time in 8 years. Remarkable.
     
  8. merlinpinpin

    merlinpinpin Hall of Fame

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    Weak grass era, obviously. :D
     
  9. Prisoner of Birth

    Prisoner of Birth Banned

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    One time in freaking straights to Krajicek. And he's been irrelevant at the Wimbledon outside of those 8 years. Federer, on the other hand, has been relevant for 10 years now, and counting. Not to mention how he eliminated Sampras when he was just a greenhorn in 2001 when Sampras was on his biggest winning streak at a Slam.
     

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