Stats for 1969 USO final (Laver-Roche)

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by krosero, Apr 12, 2008.

  1. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    Laver d. Roche 7-9, 6-1, 6-2, 6-2

    The match that won the Grand Slam.

    Laver was 31, Roche 24.

    Laver went to spiked shoes after failing to serve out the first set at 5-4. He had an agreement with Mike Gibson, the referee, that he could do so if the court was slippery.

    Roche’s level of play fell after the first set. He'd beaten Newcombe 8-6 in the fifth the day before in the semis, so perhaps he simply got tired at that point. Laver thought Roche was not at his best and not digging in as usual.

    Roche had beaten Laver in 5 of their last 7 meetings, per the New York Times.

    The match was called by Jack Kramer and Bud Collins.

    Collins said that Laver’s winning streak was 29 matches, going back to a loss in June at Queens Club to Newcombe. He said the streak included 6 tournaments, not including the USO.

    Laver’s wife was about to give birth; she was three days’ overdue.


    My counts below.

    Laver won 138 points overall, Roche 110.


    SERVICE

    Laver won 78 of 122 points on his serve (or 64%).
    Roche won 66 of 126 points on his serve (or 52%).

    Laver won 16 straight points on serve, from his first service game of the second to his first of the third.

    Laver served 6 aces, Roche none.

    Laver served 5 double-faults (all in the first set). Roche also served 5 (two in the first set).

    Laver got 28 return errors from Roche, of which I judged 5 as service winners.

    Roche got 33 return errors from Laver, of which I judged 7 as service winners.

    Laver served at 53%, making 65 of 122 first serves. His percentages by set: 54, 40, 60, 57.

    Roche served at 67%, making 84 of 126 first serves. His percentages by set: 60, 67, 78, 68.


    Laver won 9 of 13 break points.
    Roche won 4 of 11 break points.

    Laver was unbroken in the last three sets, and in that time he faced only one break point – right after Roche took the first set.

    Laver got his first serve into play on 7 of the 11 break points he faced (or 64% of the time, higher than his overall percentage).

    Roche got his first serve into play on 8 of the 13 break points he faced (or 62% of the time, lower than his overall percentage).


    WINNERS

    Laver hit 50 winners apart from service: 7 FH, 17 BH, 9 FHV, 10 BHV, 7 overheads.

    Roche hit 30 winners apart from service: 6 FH, 8 BH, 5 FHV, 6 BHV, 5 overheads.

    Both Laver and Roche have nearly as many winners from ground strokes as from volleys/smashes.

    The big stroke of the match was Laver’s backhand: 17 winners.

    Roche is known for his backhand volley: he had slightly more winners from that side than his forehand side.

    Laver had 5 service return winners, all backhand passes. He hit 17 other passing shots, a dozen from the backhand. In fact he broke at 3-4 in the first set with four backhand passes.

    Roche had 6 service return winners (none after the first game of the second set), four from the FH. All of these returns were passes. And he hit 6 other passing shots (none in the fourth set and only one in the third), including five backhands.

    Neither man had a lob winner.


    Errors (forced and unforced)

    Subtracting the aces and clean winners from the total points won:

    Laver made 80 total errors. Of those I counted 33 return errors and 5 double-faults. That leaves him making 42 errors in points that had at least a successful return, that is, in rallies.

    Roche made 82 total errors. Of those I counted 28 return errors and 5 double-faults. That leaves him making 49 errors in rallies.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2009
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  2. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

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    Again good work, Krosero. Laver had a 4-5 record vs. Roche in 1969, but he always won the big things: Australian open sf, Philadelphia indoor f., Forest Hills final, and Wembley British Indoor f. Roche won the Sydney warm up to the AO, New Zealand open, LA pro, Florida pro and a third place play off at Durch pro, all at the begin of the year. One observation to the stats: In all encounters, you counted, we see Laver's backhand doing real damage. There seems no other player in history (this side of Don Budge) with so many clean backhand winners. A comparison with the best results of Gasquet in recent times would be interesting.
     
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  3. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Agreed. Laver's backhand is underrated, and I think equal to Rosewall's as one of the great backhands in tennis. It may have been indeed better because he could hit slice, flat, or topspin.
     
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  4. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    You know, I have Gasquet-Roddick on order; I want to do a breakdown of the winners. (The other stats are available, obviously). Kohlschreiber-Roddick is another one I plan to do.
     
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  5. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    Just looking over the matches we all did. Laver's backhand was the most destructive stroke of the match in the AO semi that Moose did (against Roche), this final against Roche, and the 1970 Dunlop final in Sydney (Rosewall).

    In the '69 W final (Newcombe), it would have been the most destructive stroke of the match with 13 winners, except that Laver had just as many winners from his own forehand. In the semifinal you did against Ashe, Laver had 13 backhand winners, slightly edged out by his own forehand (15 winners) and, no surprise, Ashe's backhand (14 winners). That's an impressive stat for Ashe, considering he lost the match.
     
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  6. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    A while ago I did the Hilton Head match with Borg, and there it was a different story.

    I have Laver's forehand at 7 winners and 12 unforced errors. His backhand had only 2 winners and 23 unforced errors.

    All the other matches had short rallies, against net-rushers, and Laver had a lot of backhand passes. Against Borg, who did not come in, Laver's backhand was not as imposing. Of course, in all the other matches Laver was in his prime, too. By 1976 his game was surely no longer the same.

    If we had some clay-court stats for him in his prime we could say more, though I don't know of any such matches that are available.
     
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  7. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

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    Laver himself said, that he, when he got into his mid-thirties, sliced his backhand much more, because he had lost a step, to get into position for a topspin backhand. I saw a life exhibition Borg -Laver in 1978, and then 40 year old Laver let go his screaming drive backhand only occasionally, when he got behind the ball.
     
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  8. Borgforever

    Borgforever Hall of Fame

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    Hi everybody!

    After an extremely work-intensive month -- I love hard work -- and lots of tennis and long-distance running -- I have earned a little free-time.

    Things have been going well -- and I know this is against "Christmas rules" but I must announce that I will post 4 clips of the finest rallies and shots of this remarkable, unique and astonishing match on Youtube on Christmas Day for all you Laver-aficionados as my gift to you -- all my friends here at TW -- Urban, Hoodjem, pc1, krosero, CyB, Borg Number One, FiveO, Moose and others -- the list is too long to include everybody here if you forgive me...

    It will truly knock your socks off straight into the Andromeda-galaxy!

    No joke...

    It took a long time to make it -- the copy is mediocre, but I polished the image and made it much, much better. It truly must be seen to be believed. And you will...

    This is my salute to maybe the greatest tennis-player of all time ROD "THE ROCKET" LAVER!

    I love him and this is one of my top five matches of all time to revisit.

    Don't worry I will include many jaw-dropping shots made by "Tiger Tony" too. Tony Roche is very underrated and I love him too.

    Hope you will love it as much as I do.

    I will also -- at the same time -- post the last two clips -- clip 1 and 3 to complete my 4-part clip-series of 20-year-old Björn Borg's granite-cracking thunderbolt performance at Wimby 1976 against mercurial genius Ilie Nastase -- on the hottest (by weather I mean -- 41 degrees Celsius down in the centrecourt-cauldron) Wimby-edition in its entire history.

    What I am especially proud of is that I have edited all material to include many, many brilliant comments made by the late great Jack Kramer (RIP) that hits the nail to head every single time -- like "The Rocket" on the damp Forest Hills' sodden turf. That man had a tennis-computer between his ears and eagle-eyes to pin-point exactly the most important detail with Dashiell Hammett-like, diamond-cutter precision.

    The great Jack Kramer's observations will be richly included in both the unmatched battles of 1969 and 1976. You will not be disappointed.

    I also, by pure luck, secured a deal and a contract to produce, direct and write an hour-long documentary about the, perhaps, greatest and most forgotten player of all time LAWRENCE DOHERTY from London, England.

    This will of course include lots of slow-motion analysis of his shots and playing style from the remarkable footage of him in singles against "Hurricane Smith" in the Eastbourne-final in September of 1900 and the doubles-final -- with the immortal H. L. paired with his incomparable brother R. F.

    It will also show them play in correct speed with added sound, ball-bounces -- everything-- for the shots.

    It's a total restoration of long-lost footage of the greatest winner in singles and doubles top-tennis ever witnessed.

    I've taken a lot of time to correct the speed -- paying several very experienced and expert film-restorers a handsome sum to correct and fine-tune it so the footage will be as close to reality as is humanly possible to do.

    You must remember that back in the early 1900s film-cameras were hand-cranked -- which inevitably made the recording speed of the film inconsistent -- resulting in the fluttering, "speeded-up"-effect that so plagues many very old film clips up until the mid 1920s.

    I am so satisfied with the results I get goose-bumbs. But I am never really satisfied. "Nobody's perfect" as the great Billy Wilder and I. A. L. Diamond told us in the last line of the classic movie "SOME LIKE IT HOT".

    Until next time -- a really, really, reeeaaally Merry Christmas and, I hope, a very Happy New Year TO YOU ALL from Borgforever in Gothenburg, Sweden...
     
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2009
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  9. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

    Ethereal company indeed!
     
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  10. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Krosero,
    Do you have this match on DVD?
     
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  11. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

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    Thanks Borgforever, nice Christmas gift.
     
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  12. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    I'm looking forward to any and all clips you may have, Borgforever. In particular I'm glad you're finishing the Borg/Nastase clips.

    Merry Christmas to you.
     
    #12
  13. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Congratulations! Sounds like a dream-job for you.

    Absolutely correct. I took lots of film-making and film history courses as an undergrad. We often noted this, and had to make allowances with our imaginations in watching very old, vintage films. (In the US we call it the "Keystone Cops" effect where everyone seems to running around really fast--very comic.)

    Your restorations should make a much better evaluation of HL Doherty's strokes that much easier. We can't wait!
     
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  14. Borgforever

    Borgforever Hall of Fame

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    Better late than never.

    I consider this as my finest work on Youtube. This is about 21 minutes and 30 seconds of spectacular rallies and key points -- baked in the precise narrative provided by the brilliantly sharp eagle-eye of Jack Kramer, flanked by the young Bud Collins.

    I've worked on the image -- which was very bad to begin with -- increasing the contrast and so forth to see the ball as much as possible without destroying the background completely. It still leaves much to be desired. It took a lot of time even to get this classic in a presentable shape.

    So here goes Rod Laver, 31, in 1969 -- arguably his 6th straight year as World No. 1 -- against Tiger Tony Roche during that difficult, rainy, misty afternoon when he pulled off that amazing feat -- as the only male in the Open Era to win all four major championships in one season --

    -- so get yourself a drink of your choice, take comfortable seat and enjoy the ferocious S&V-brilliance of 40 years ago --

    -- Enjoy The Rocket launch the Grand Slam!!! :)

    Part 1:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dWMUMG3Xb6I

    Part 2:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3y2CpBpV5pg

    Part 3:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CvpckZmLaEc

    Part 4 and the last:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2f60jJTbEps
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2010
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  15. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Great job Borgforever. Interesting that around a little over 4 minutes of part 1 that Kramer says Laver's backhand is around Budge's or Kovac's level. Of course in books and later he did maintained Budge's backhand was the best ever.
     
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  16. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

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    Tremendous job, Borgforever. Had seen only short clips before. I think, its astounding shotmaking despite very, very difficult conditions. The court looks more like a potatoe-field, especially around the baseline. No top player today would set a foot on that kind of surface.They had used a helicopter to dry it somewhat.

    But we see so many winners, and great work of the racket head, to adjust and correct the poor footing and irregular bounces on the slippery court. Laver turned to spikes at around 5-5, but it had no immediate effect. Roche was returning extremely well with his forehand early on. When Laver broke free in the last 3 sets, he became irrestitible. That backhand, directed from wrist and arm alone, keeps soaring past Roche and finding the lines, and that straight forehand winner of a Roche smash, is fantastic. Nobody can tell me, that there is anyone with that racket control today.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2010
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  17. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    I believe you're correct Urban. Incredible shotmaking by the Rocket. Amazing power and control on the awful Forest Hills grass courts with the old regular size wood rackets.
     
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  18. borg number one

    borg number one Legend

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    Great work BorgForever. Thanks for posting these. The color looks really good and the video is quite clear. Also, yes, great shotmaking by Laver especially, as Roche must have been a step slow after going 5 sets the day before. That's impressive that they could still play so much on such a worn/slippery surface.
     
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  19. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Man!! Is this good stuff, absolutely! (Thanks a great deal, BF.)

    Laver's backhand is so deadly--and so versatile: the best!
     
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2010
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  20. borg number one

    borg number one Legend

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    Yes, thanks again for this video BorgForever nand Hoodjem yes, his backhand looks great for sure.

    Now, per about 30% of the people that participated in the poll in the Spadea v. Laver thread, today's V. Spadea could in fact beat this guy most times with a wood racquet, if he had some time to adjust to wood frames. How could Spadea pull off the shots necessary to win points against Laver even playing on this troubled court? In fact, which players could do it? Picture say Del Potro out there with say a wood Dunlop and moving QUICKLY all over the court and lunging. Would Del Potro be able to stand in the middle of the back court and just slug away like he does with his Wilson?
     
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  21. Nadal_Power

    Nadal_Power Semi-Pro

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    I will put my stats of the match in few days time.. incredible how Roche just went from the court after first set
     
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  22. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Interesting, very interesting.
     
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  23. kiki

    kiki Banned

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    Not a ggreat match to end it all but what mattered to Laver was to win it anyway.if it had ben their AO semi, this would still be a hot issue...

    Laver´s maturity, not getting overanxious and tense, and controlling the bad bounces is astonishing and the basic reason that he would still win the GS at 31.

    One , simply and plainly has one reaction to that: take his hat off.
     
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