After several posts on another thread, it seems that a thread about Stefan Edberg was appropriate. The first time I saw Stefan Edberg play was at Wimbledon. He didn't do very well, but caught the attention of the world. An Italian journalist whose name escapes me, said if Edberg didn't win Wimbledon in 5 years, he'd quit his job. Well, Edberg beat him to the punch and won it 3 years later. Many forget that Edberg also got to the finals of the French Open where he lost to Chang. I would have bet my house and everything I own on Edberg that year, but it was Chang's year. Edberg is one of the few players in the history of the Open era to make it to all four Grand Slam finals. He won 6 of those Grand Slam tournaments, two Australian, two Wimbledon, and two U.S. Opens. It would seem that Edberg was as balanced in his victory count as he was on court. Edberg's chief rival in my view was Becker. The two were perfect foils for each other. Becker was very German IMO. Becker's game was built on precision and power, just like most exports from Germany (the four wheeled kind). Edberg was the antithesis of this, playing more like a refined McEnroe. You know you got beat, you just didn't know quite how. Edberg's Game Edberg's game centered around two things, his serve and his volley. Edberg had the most awesome kick serve the world has ever seen, before or since. He routinely hit 115 MPH kick serves. The service delivery had one purpose, to allow Edberg time to get into volleying position. He did this as well as anyone who's ever volleyed. His serve has been described as awkward, but I thought it was really a defining part of his overall game. Edberg's volleys are classic. The thing I noticed most about his volleys is that he kept the racket head close to eye level, and his balance was impeccable. Edberg had very little racket movement incorporated into his volleys and used placement more than power. His whole game was built around placment rather than power. Of all the strokes Edberg possessed, more has been said about his backhand than any other stroke. I have yet to see a better looking one handed backhand from any player, male or female. He could hit all three backhands with equal proficiency. Edberg could rally from backcourt hitting topspin backhands, hit a slice that was both defensive and offensive, and he could come through the backhand and drive it through the court. Probably the most classic one-handed backhand the game has ever seen. Edberg's forehand was described as his weakness. It may well have been, but it possessed the same elegance that the rest of his game did. He never really got a ton of racket head speed on any of his groundies, but he always met the ball very cleanly. I remember when Edberg put down his ProStaff in favor of an all-encompassing Adidas contract. Adidas had built him an all white frame and he played with it at the Masters in NYC. It was a good looking frame, but it did little for Edberg save give him a touch of tendonitis. He went back to Wilson and played for two or three years (one of them as number 1 in the world) without a contract. I remember him being quoted as saying "I guess they don't want me". It didn't matter to him and he kept playing with the ProStaff. Wilson later signed him and kept him I guess ever since. Becker and Edberg really parallel each other. They both own 6 Grand Slams, both love the grass at Wimbledon, and both consider each other as their chief rival and greatest advesary. They had some epic battles at Wimbledon and their matches are the last classic S/V vs. S/V that we're likely to see. Edberg and Becker both moved like they played tennis. Edberg forever graceful and elegant, Becker powerful and throwing himself about the court.