Stats for 2000 USO Final (Safin-Sampras)

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by noeledmonds, Jan 3, 2008.

  1. noeledmonds

    noeledmonds Professional

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    I just counted the statistics for this match myself earlier today. The score was 6-4, 6-3, 6-3 to Safin. Unreturned serves were marked but never counted as unforced errors. Not all winners were clean winners (although the majority were) and it was sometimes difficult to distinguish between winners and forced errors. Here are the stats:

    Safin served at 49%; Sampras served at 65%

    Safin had 12 aces and 1 double fault; Sampras had 7 aces and 4 double faults

    Safin had 13 unreturned serves; Sampras had 25 unreturned serves

    Safin had 35 non-service winners; Sampras had 21 non-service winners

    Safin had 11 FH winners, 18 BH winners, 4 FHV winners, 1 BHV winner, 1 Smash winner

    Sampras had 6 FH winners, 1 BH winner, 5 FHV winners, 7 BHV winners, 2 Smash winners

    Safin had 12 unforced errors, Sampras had 20 unforced errors


    As you can see pretty much every statistic in this match goes against Sampras except for unreturned serve. Sampras's backhand let him down this day as over half his unforced errors occured on the backhand side and he only had one backhand winner. Sampras looked unusually uncomfortable at the net and was rushed and overpowered by Safin. Sampras did not have any break points until the last game of the match where Safin served his only double fault. However Safin saved two break points in the final game to win the match in straight sets.
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2008
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  2. Nadal_Monfils

    Nadal_Monfils Semi-Pro

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    Wow Sampras serves 70% and can't even get to a tiebreaker. Safin must have been returning really well.
     
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  3. alfa164164

    alfa164164 Professional

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    One of the announcers (mayber Trabert) rightfully called this match a "mugging". Safin just completely dominated.
     
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  4. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    Thanks for those, and welcome to the club. :)

    I had this match somewhere in the back of my head as one that I wanted to do, but I probably would not have gotten to it for a long time.

    If you plan to do more, just check out this page and scroll down to post #31, Moose and I list some of the matches we're working on or planning to do:

    http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=169983&page=2

    As far as I'm concerned, I'm not "set" on doing any one particular match and you're more than welcome to let me know that you're going to do any match on my list.

    One other issue. Moose and I decided to count as winners (and aces) only those balls that the returner does not touch in any way. I did make an issue out of extremely rare cases where the ball is touched so lightly that it continues undeflected in its path, but I was going to drop that as an issue: I think we should exclude those from being winners, no matter how lightly the ball is touched.

    That way there's a common standard to guide many people taking stats. And from our discussions it seems that this is how stats are taken today -- no winner unless it's a clean winner.

    I'm not talking, of course, about "service winners," which by definition are touched serves, but unreturnable. It's a problematic category, and neither Moose nor I have counted that stat in any systematic way.

    I had thought that the statisticians made a distinction in the 1990 USO final between a service winner deflected sideways by the returner and a serve that was very lightly touched -- I thought the latter one was called an ace -- but when I proofed my work I found that this was not the case. So I see little remaining basis for making the distinction, and there's plenty of reason just to keep things as simple as possible.

    Are all of the winners you listed clean winners?
     
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  5. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

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    According to the atp site, Safin was at 48% & Sampras at 63%.

    I'm curious to see what the stats were like from their 2001 USO meeting to compare.
     
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  6. CyBorg

    CyBorg Legend

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    Sampras' backhand was probably at its worst around this time and completely terrible in this match.

    Safin had a few troubles closing out the match in the third set, getting overly emotional and quite nervous. I think that it is very likely that he could have gotten himself into trouble if a few unlucky breaks came his way. Pete had a number of chances to break Safin to even the third set, but his backhand just didn't let him.
     
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  7. noeledmonds

    noeledmonds Professional

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    Safin returned very well this day. This was probabely the best display of power tennis I have ever seen.

    Thanks for the list. I may well do more matches if I have the time. Unfortunately I have lost a whole archive of matches when my computer was wiped. However I still have some good matches left.

    As stated in my original post not all winners were listed as clean winners, perhaps between five and eight of Safin's winners were not clean winners but the vast majority were passing shots.

    I do however agree that clean winners is the only objective way of marking winners.

    Interesting, I notice that Safin served three more points on the ATP website than I counted. This is probabely my error but I am afraid I am not prepared to rewatch the whole match to check. Sampras's serve percentage is a little more concerning as there is a seven percent disprepency here. I feel I did perform my counts but one can not be completely sure.

    I notice there are also slight descrepencies in the ace and double fault count but I assure you my statistics are almost certainly correct here. The ATP website has been known to be unreliable in the past.

    Sampras's backhand was simply not on song this day, while Safin's backhand was simply superb. However even if Sampras's backhand had been better I don't think Sampras would have had a lot of chance on the day. Sampras was far from his best in almost every department on the day and Safin played the game of his life. Sampras had very few chances to break in any of the sets and did not even get a break point until the final game of the match.
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2008
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  8. VGP

    VGP Legend

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    In 2000, Sampras' backhand was bad. If you watch the Safin-Sampras match in Canada a few weeks earlier it was even worse.

    I'm not sure what happened, but his backhand went from his better side in 1990 to a liability in 2000. Perhaps it was after his back injury in 1999, but he really got hitchy with the thing. His elbow jut kept creeping forward......

    Funny thing is that he's kinda fixed it now, but it still comes up from time to time.
     
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  9. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    Thanks, that's what I was looking for. Let me give you the full context. I'm planning, hopefully soon, to post a list of all the matches and stats. There will actually have to be separate lists, comparing rates of placement winners, rates of winners-plus-aces, and published rates for matches we have not done ourselves, in which we're not sure what's being counted (particularly service winners -- it's really a shame that these are counted in the total winner count today, but we're almost never told how many service winners there were; we typically only get the aces, so we don't really know how many non-service winners there were unless someone counts them). All the data will be of clean winners.

    Anyway, I'm hoping to be able to use any stats that people take in this list, and this match is a real touchstone, a super display of power tennis.

    So that's up to you, if you do more stats: I'm happy to see any stats, but if you let me know how many were not clean winners, I can put them in one of the lists (or at least include the match with some type of note appended).

    Thanks again for doing the match, it's exciting to see the numbers.

    Their ace count for Becker in the Hanover final of 1996 is off by two. The Becker-Pioline match at Wimbledon is incomplete, I don't remember offhand exactly what's missing but it looks like some of the match was not counted, though the aces and doubles may have been counted fully. It's impossible to say, though generally I still use their stats.

    Just curious, about how many matches did you lose, generally?
     
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  10. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

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    what was the difference in the amount of points Sampras served in your count & the amount shown on the atp site?

    just noticed something strange on their stats, they have Sampras at 50/79 on 1st serve & also have him winning 50 of 79 in total serve points played. that seems to be a rather strange coincidence, that the numbers from 2 different stats would match up like that.

    krosero, do you have any other info on these match stats?
     
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  11. noeledmonds

    noeledmonds Professional

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    Just realised I made an error in service statistics calulations. I ommited double faults accidentally as 1st serve faults also. Sampras's new first serve percentage comes out at 65% while Safin's is 49%. I will correct the orginal post. I will reply in more depth later.
     
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  12. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    They have him at 50/79, but not on first-serve points won, rather on first-serve percentage. I sometimes misread those two lines myself.

    I wrote down some stats months ago w/o noting the source. So I looked for more now. The LA Times has Safin at 37 winners, close to NoelEdmonds' figure.

    So far I have not found another discrepancy between published stats; I thought I did but I was looking at the wrong article.
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2008
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  13. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

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    '

    they have him at 50/79 in 2 different stats:

    1st Serve Percentage 63% (50/79)

    and further down:

    Total Service Points Won 63% (50/79)

    seems like an unlikely coincidence to me.
     
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  14. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    I found this for the 37-winner figure; it seems to include service.

     
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  15. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    I see it now. The numbers still add up, though, because if he won 38 points on first serve, then 12 on second, he's got 50 altogether. It does look like a strange coincidence, though the figures of 38 and 12 seem to be realistic as percentages for the losing player: they leave him winning 76% on first serve and 41% on second.
     
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  16. laurie

    laurie Guest

    I watched the match for the first time yesterday. I got a Sky Sports version recently on one tape, the semi and final, which I'm going to convert to disc. I listened to it live on the radio in 2000 (in disbelief as the match went on.)

    Sampras was completely outplayed from the 6th game onwards, up to that point he seemed to be doing quite well. Then he started this chipping and charging all the time which I can only assume sent the signal to Safin that he wasn't up to the task that day.

    It looks like Sampras just got stuck in a rut by this stage in 2000. He played the match completely wrongly in my view. Towards the end of the match when he started trying to play a few rallies he actually won some of them and got a couple of break points, then started chpping and charging again and that was it.

    Sampras' level dropped drammatically from 1999 to 2000. In 1999 on the hardcourts he was mixing up his game, staying back on some second serves, chpping and charging only at strategic moments in a match, in fact hardly ever, his movement from the baseline was very good. Then in 2000 he's serving and volleying on everything and chip and charging all day. He even did that at the Aussie Open against Agassi, he never did that in 1997 when he won or in previous years.
    Plus its no coincidence that in 2000 his titles tally dropped as well only winning 2 titles, after winning 5 in 1999 when he missed a lot of the season, so after this thrashing the critics were right to say Sampras was finished.

    Sampras handled defeat well and gave Safin a lot of credit (even though he was obviously in turmoil inside).

    Sampras did incredibly well to get to 2 more US Open finals after this thrashing. He also did well to beat Safin in straight sets only 3 months after in the Masters Cup, he wanted to set the record straight I suppose. I still think Sampras would never had played this type of Tennis under Tim Gullickson, Annacone really asked him to use his athleticism more but he sacrificed his all round game as a result. Under Annacone his clay results suffered badly as well. By the way I'm not placing blame on Annacone of course, just pointing what I think happened with his style of play.

    It's also interesting that they split in 2001 and Sampras sought the help of Tom Gullickson then Jose Higueras looking for a new voice. During his 2002 Indian Wells campaign, Sampras was practising ground strokes after matches, Higueras mentioned it in a 2002 interview in Tennis magazine.

    He went back to Annacone because Higueras couldn't work with him full time. During the 2002 US Open, Sampras played the youngsters a lot better. Against Haas and Roddick, he stayed back on his second serve much more than he'd been doing, getting the forehand into play as opposed to a volley to change the play and it worked frequently, which allowed him to conserve energy. Sampras is not a man to talk tactics publicly but I would be interested to know if that was his or Annacone's idea to do that.
     
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  17. federerfanatic

    federerfanatic Banned

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    Often I think coaches who were former players try to impose their own game style on their player, not due to selfishness, but because they bought into the belief so strongly that is the right way to play they honestly think it is best for their player to play that way as well. They sometimes forget just because that was the best way for them to play, does not mean it is the best way for someone else.
     
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  18. superman1

    superman1 Legend

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    I just watched the match on ESPN classic for the first time. Sampras was actually playing very well - he wasn't really chipping and charging that much, and he was fairly successful at net, 64% or something, and he had a huge number of aces, more than usual. He was hitting some second serves in the 114-116 mph range. Agassi was playing the match of his life, making almost no errors at all. Agassi looked to be the better player in the 3rd, then Sampras served his way out of trouble and got to a tiebreak, and then turned into Super Sampras and just played as well as anyone possibly can play the game of tennis, winning 7-0. Both guys were holding serve in the fourth set, and then they played the best tiebreak I've ever seen. Both played their best, but Agassi won it. As for the fifth set, I had always assumed that Sampras was just exhausted and gave to Agassi. Not true at all. He was tired, but he was still making plays, and Agassi was just hitting screaming winner after winner. Everything was going in. He was hitting return winners off of perfectly good serves. Then eventually Sampras gave up after Agassi was two breaks up, and it was over.

    By the way, the commentators said it was a fast court. I don't know what the deal was, but it did look fast. It was also a cool day/night. So no excuses for Samps.
     
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  19. laurie

    laurie Guest

    Nice you watched that one Superman1.

    That was a great match - I still think in that match Sampras gave Agassi too many targets by coming in on every 2nd serve in the match, something he never did pre 2000 (away from grass) - plus that match changed their rivalry as Agassi went on to win 3 straight matches after Sampras won four of their 5 meetings in 1999.

    There must be a reason why Sampras would change his game plan like that, some speculate it was his back. I also think 64% winning volleys at net is not a good percentage. To beat someone like Agassi it has to be over 70%, again too many targets.

    His match against Agassi in the 2002 US Open was a much better effort, Sampras was much more patient in the rallies, really one of his best matches.

    Agassi did really well to come back from the 3rd set tiebreak hammering - and that day the rebound ace looked the fastest I've seen it. Or maybe its because those two players hit the ball so hard it makes the court look fast.
     
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  20. lambielspins

    lambielspins Banned

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    Sampras did not seem nearly as fit in his final years as he did throughout the 90s, alot of that probably a function of age, perhaps some of it more divided focus with his marriage, nearing/ reaching the major milestone records, who knows what other factors. I think that is a possible reason he began attacking the net almost everywhere and rallying from the back less. To play alot from the baseline requires not only groundstroke quality and point construction which he still had seemingly, but conditioning as well, otherwise it takes it toll as the matches wear on in a tournament.
     
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  21. superman1

    superman1 Legend

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    His endurance was not where it used to be, but his sprinting speed was still as good as ever. His peak play was also as good as ever. It became more a matter of peaking at the right moments, which was always his style but then more than ever.
     
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  22. Ocean Drive

    Ocean Drive Hall of Fame

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    Safin played beautiful tennis, he was amazing back then.
     
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  23. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

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    They used fast balls that year, & many players(including Sampras) complained about them earlier in the tournament.

    Also, Sampras injured his hip flexor in the 4th set of that match, he pulled out of Davis Cup the following week. I'm not sure he would have been able to play the final had he beat Agassi in the semis.

    That said, I think this was the most important match of Agassi's career. He lost to Sampras badly at the Masters Cup '99, & many had a * on his '99 USO win since Sampras didn't play it due to injury(and was the best player that summer)

    Agassi responded very well in the 4th(after having lost set points in the 3rd) & had to hold serve to stay in the match at 4-5 & 5-6 in the 4th.

    He cracked mentally many times in the past(& the future) in situations like this, this was the most mentally tough I've seen him, many expected him to have a letdown in the 4th after losing the 3rd.

    Also Sampras told Brad Gilbert to 'shut up' in the match, you can see him glare off the court a few times during this match.
     
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  24. abmk

    abmk G.O.A.T.

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    I watched this match now and did the stats. One point , the first point of set 2 is missing(sampras won that)

    A few snippets before that though:

    sampras started his first service game ( first game of the match ) with an ace and so did marat ( second game of the match)

    The 2nd set ended with a DF from sampras

    safin did not face a breakpoint on his serve till the last game where he faced 2 ( nerves came into play at this stage big time )

    These are the stats

    Most of the stats seem to tally with the boxscore counts here :

    http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showpost.php?p=2819861&postcount=16

    Service:

    sampras had 8 aces,4 service winners and 4 DFs
    safin had 12 aces,0 service winners and 1 DF

    Winners(apart from serve):

    sampras had 6 FHW,1 BHW,5 FHV,6 BHV,2 OH winners, total=20
    safin had 11 FHW,11 BHW,2 FHV,1 BHV,0 OH winners , total=25

    Out of those, sampras had 1 forehand passing shot winner

    Safin had 10 forehand passing shot winners ( including 2 of the return ) - his only other forehand winner was a dropshot winner
    he had 9 backhand passing shot winners ( including 2 of the return ) - the other two backhand winners being a BH DTL and a lob

    Errors(apart from serve):

    sampras had 8 FH UE,14 BH UE,13 FH FE,12 BH FE, that is 22 unforced and 25 forced

    safin had 7 FH UE, 4 BH UE, 16 FH FE,11 BH FE, that is 11 unforced and 27 forced

    Note that these are the errors of those wings, not just off the ground, but also at the net

    Return errors:

    sampras had 7 return errors of the FH wing,5 return errors of the BH wing, total of 12 return errors

    safin had 11 return errors of the FH wing,10 return errors of the BH wing,total of 21 return errors

    These do NOT include the service winners

    winners and unforced errors
    :

    sampras had 32 winners and 26 UEs while safin had 37 winners and 12 UEs

    Net points:

    Sampras won 44/81 points at the net while safin won 5/11 at the net

    Overall sampras won 71 ( missed one point that sampras won - first point of second set, so becomes 72), safin won 88

    Baseline rallies ( of 3 points or more ) :

    Baseline to baseline rallies: sampras won 14 of those, safin won 19
    Including net approaches: sampras won 16 of those, safin won 26
    Counting only rallies of 4+ shots(incl approaches to the net): sampras won 14 and safin won 19
    Baseline to baseline rallies of 4+ shots: sampras won 12 of those, safin won 13 of those
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2010
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  25. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    That one was a flat first serve down the middle (an ace).

    I'll probably have more comments after I read the post carefully, I just speed-read it now.
     
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  26. abmk

    abmk G.O.A.T.

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    oh then that brings up the ace count to 9 - by set 4,4 and 1. But all the boxscores have sampras at 8 aces ...Maybe then I had one serve that safin barely got his racquet onto as an ace rather than as a service winner ...perhaps it was this: there was one that sampras served right at safin that whizzed past him, I wrote that down as an ace, maybe safin got some racquet on it ..I'll check it soon
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2010
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  27. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    Just a few things unclear to me.

    I think the "Errors(apart from serve)" include the Return errors, is that right?

    If so, do the "Errors(apart from serve)" include the service winners? I ask because the Return Errors do not include them. (Also, the phrase "apart from serve" is meant to exclude double-faults, clearly, but in this case I'm not sure if you also mean it to exclude errors made on service winners).
     
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  28. abmk

    abmk G.O.A.T.

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    yeah, they do

    no, they do not include service winners
     
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