I watched this match a few times to get different kinds of stats from it – including, for the first time, forced and unforced errors. I never get tired of watching it. From the time I saw it live, it has always thrilled me to see Cash’s skill, athleticism and concentration against Lendl. Score: 7-6 (5), 6-2, 7-5 Cash served 4 aces and 6 doubles. He got a service return error from Lendl 36 times (of which, by my own judgment, 6 were service winners). Lendl served 6 aces and 6 doubles. He got a service return error from Cash 29 times (of which, by my own judgment, 12 were service winners). NBC credited Lendl with 7 aces because they gave him an ace on what today we would call a service winner. Lendl threw his racquet down in frustration while serving at 1-3 in the second set, a game in which he doubled three times. The stats on the return errors are deceptive. Cash and Lendl each got a similar number of return errors, but Lendl’s service games were much longer than Cash’s (see the service percentages below). In other words, Cash earned free points with his serve more frequently than Lendl did. Cash served at 67%, making 54 of 81 first serves. Lendl served at 61%, making 80 of 131 first serves. Cash’s first-serve percentage by set: 29/37 (78%) 12/16 (75%) 13/28 (46%) Lendl’s first-serve percentage by set: 45/63 (71%) 13/31 (42%) 22/37 (59%) Cash won 66 of 81 points on his serve, Lendl 77 of 131. Cash won his serve 9 times at love, Lendl 3 times. Cash won 120 points overall, Lendl 92. Cash won 4 of 18 break points that he held. Lendl won 1 of 1. Cash got his first serve into play on the only break point he faced. Lendl got his first serve in on 8 of 18 break points (only 44% of the time). Cash hit 44 non-service winners: 6 FH, 16 BH, 11 FHV, 6 BHV, and 5 overheads. Lendl hit 27 non-service winners: 7 FH, 2 BH, 8 FHV, 7 BHV, and 3 overheads. (At 1-all in the third, the screen went blank for one point in NBC’s coverage, but the sound remained. It sounded like a quick exchange at the end, with Lendl apparently finishing it at net. I credited him on that point with a forehand volley winner). Cash’s winners by set: 21, 12, 11 Lendl’s winners by set: 15, 5, 7 Cash is nicely balanced, with exactly half of his winners coming off his ground strokes. Cash returned Lendl’s second serve for a winner 7 times with his backhand, and once with his forehand. He returned Lendl’s first serve cleanly once off each side. At 4-5 in the first set, when Lendl had not yet been passed cleanly on a service return, it happened to him four times – three times when serving to Cash’s backhand. Lendl managed to save the set then, but he saw two more backhand returns pass by him in the tiebreak. All of these involved second serves. I could not help wondering how much better Lendl might have done in this match if he’d stayed back on at least some of his second serves and tried to work his way in. A good example is the one time that Lendl stayed back – on a second serve at 1-5, love-15 in the second set. Again, he went to Cash’s backhand. But since he didn’t rush the net, he got an ordinary return down the line, instead of a sharp backhand directed at his feet or out of his reach. He took that return on the bounce and pummeled it with his forehand; Cash fell trying to get it. Per the New York Times, Lendl had a losing percentage of points won at net – 43% (compared to 60% for Cash). This is partly because he could not win points coming in behind his second serve: at 1-all in the second set, per NBC, Lendl was winning just 33% of such points. Apart from service returns, Cash passed Lendl another 6 times – four times off the backhand. He also hit 6 lob winners – again, four times off the backhand. So all 22 of Cash’s ground stroke winners were passing shots or lobs. By contrast, only 3 of Lendl’s ground strokes were passing shots: a forehand lob and two service return winners, all in the first set. Lendl did pass Cash one other time by taking a sitter in the air (with a smash, from no-man’s land). And, of course, he forced some volley errors from Cash, just as Cash did to him. Not counting service returns, I have Cash making 23 forced errors (including 7 volleys), and Lendl 15 (including 6 volleys). Not counting doubles, I have Cash making 5 unforced errors, and Lendl 15. Cash won 28 of 43 approaches (13 of 22 in the first set, 7 of 7 in the second, 8 of 14 in the third). Lendl won 41 of 89 approaches (21 of 44 in the first set, 7 of 18 in the second, 13 of 27 in the third). It may seem strange that I got Lendl approaching the net twice as much as Cash. But so did the New York Times, as I’ll describe in the post below. Both men followed all their serves into the net. And each man got to net on his opponent’s serve only a handful of times. So basically they went to net about as frequently as they served. And Lendl served a lot more points than Cash did: 131 compared to 81. That is how he came to net so much more than Cash did. Some stats from NBC. In the first set, Cash served at 78%, Lendl at 71%. At 1-love in the third, Cash was serving at 77%, Lendl at 62%. In the first set, Cash lost 8 points on serve, Lendl 24. At 1-love in the third, Cash had lost 8 points on serve, Lendl 40. At 1-all in the second, Cash was winning 80% of points on his second serve, Lendl just 33%. In the first set, Cash made 2 unforced errors, Lendl 8. At 1-love in the third, Cash had made 3 unforced errors, Lendl 18. NBC gave Cash 2 unforced errors in the first set; I gave him only one. They gave Lendl 8, while I gave him 7. In the second game of the third set, NBC had Lendl at 18 unforced errors. I had him only at 9.