These are my own stats, unless otherwise noted. Score: 3-6, 7-6 (5), 7-6 (4), 6-7 (11), 6-4 (58 games) (4 hours) Coming into the match, Sampras was 4-7 against Becker on indoor courts, and 9-7 overall (according to stats displayed during the match). Sampras served at 64%, Becker at 58%, per the ATP site. Sampras had 15 aces and 5 double faults. Becker had 32 aces and 8 doubles. (The ATP site puts Becker at 30 aces, but he had 32 clean ones, per my own count and that of the ZDF German television network). Sampras made 50 winners: 16 FH, 8 BH, 14 FHV, 9 BHV, and 3 smashes. Becker made 38 winners: 10 FH, 12 BH, 10 FHV, 5 BHV, and 1 smash. (Note that both of my copies of this match are missing the first point won by Becker at 2-3 in the second set, so there could be 1 more winner). Sampras' winners by set: 6, 13, 12, 13, 6 Becker's winners by set: 5, 8, 8, 11, 6 There was a bit of a letdown in the fifth set, with only one winner in the first 6 games. You can also see a letdown in their service percentages, not in Becker's but in Sampras'. Sampras' first-serve percentage by set: 63, 68, 65, 70, 50 Becker's first-serve percentage by set: 62, 66, 53, 56, 58 (These percentages are provided by the ZDF network for the first four sets; I counted serves myself in the fifth set). So Sampras did not serve particularly well in the fifth set but held on. At the start of the set he looks clearly discouraged to me, having lost two match points in the fourth-set tiebreak. Of all his service games in the final set, he had the most trouble with his first. But he got through that one with two key service winners. Both men served themselves out of trouble. Becker served a service winner and an ace down double break point at 2-3 in the second set. Sampras had service winners down break point at the start of the fourth set, and again when he faced two set points in the tiebreak. Neither Becker nor Sampras was able to pull out these sets in the end, however. More critical to the outcome is Sampras saving two break points at 2-3 in the third set with back-to-back aces. Had he not done so, with Becker holding so easily, Sampras might well have lost the third set and gone down two sets to one. Sampras displayed great defense in Becker’s last service game. Six times Becker came in behind a first serve, and Sampras won four of those points – three times with clean passing shots. That was the first time Becker was broken in the match, after 27 consecutive holds. Sampras himself held 25 straight times after being broken at 1-2 in the first set. Each man won 1 of 5 break points. Two breaks in 55 service games, a remarkable achievement. I watched their service motions; they are very different. Becker holds his racquet momentarily in the upright position before striking the ball. Sampras has his racquet in constant motion before hitting the ball. When it goes into play it looks like it’s been whipped into the court. Becker’s motion looks like a hammer coming down. I did count service winners that were not aces, but it was a rough count at best. Without a clear definition of a service winner, I put Sampras at 14, Becker at 4. I got the impression that Pete may have let some of Becker’s aces go rather than stretch for an unreturnable serve. Becker often reached as far as he could for Sampras serves. If you include only aces as service winners, then Sampras has 65 winners for the entire match, Becker 70. ZDF included at least the aces, and perhaps other service winners, in their count of direkte punkte. After four sets, Sampras had 62 of these kinds of winners, and Becker 66. At that point Sampras had 38 unforced errors (vermeidbare fehler), Becker 37. Sampras won 166 points overall, Becker 178. So in his two most difficult wins of 1996, Sampras won fewer points than did the man he beat (Alex Corretja won 218 points, and Sampras 213, in their USO quarterfinal). [These numbers are from the ATP and incorrect; see below]. Sampras and Becker hit fewer non-service winners than I had expected for a match of 58 games. Sampras leads Becker but he is still well below a rate of 1 winner per game (at .86). Laver in the 1969 Wimbledon final, 42 games long, had struck 54 winners – a rate of 1.29 per game. In a 1995 Wimbledon semifinal, 44 games long, Becker hit 48 winners, Agassi 49 (both rates standing at about 1.1). One issue here may be that the 1996 match went by with unusual swiftness. There were few break points, as noted, and all but two of Becker’s service games failed even to go to deuce. In a way it’s not a surprise that Sampras and Becker would hit few winners per game, if the average game was short. The Becker-Agassi match, even though it was 14 games shorter than this one, had nearly as many points: 340 vs. 344. The most destructive stroke on my chart (after Becker’s serve) is Sampras’ forehand, with 16 winners. It even exceeds Sampras’ 15 aces. Not far behind is Sampras’ forehand volley, with 14 winners. Becker’s most destructive stroke is his backhand, with 12 winners, followed by his forehand with 10 winners (in previous matches I have done for him his forehand has always been the more destructive). Both Becker and Sampras are balanced, with Sampras getting slightly more winners from volleys/smashes than from ground strokes, and Becker slightly more from ground strokes. But Sampras seems like the more diverse player in the sense that he struck 50 non-service winners and also hit 15 aces, while Becker struck 38 non-service winners and hit 32 aces. Forty-six percent of Becker’s clean winning shots came from his serve, while Sampras got just about a quarter of his clean winning shots from his serve. Almost all of the service return winners in this match were off the first serve. Becker returned Sampras' first serve 8 times with outright winners. He did it on three consecutive points in the opening game of the fourth set, when he forced Sampras to save two break points. Sampras returned Becker's first serve twice with outright winners, and his second serve twice as well. Becker had 6 other passing shots: 3 FH and 3 BH. Sampras had 9 other passing shots: 4 FH and 5 BH. He hit 3 of his passing shots in a single game -- when he broke Becker in the fifth set. There were no lob winners. These two basically hammered at each other, and threw up only defensive lobs, on the full stretch. Moose, did you have net stats for this match, from ESPN?