Steffi the only player (male or female) to have defended all the majors

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by Steffi-forever, Jun 30, 2012.

  1. woodrow1029

    woodrow1029 Hall of Fame

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    How do you expect not to lose credibility with statements like this?
     
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  2. boredone3456

    boredone3456 Legend

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    To add Martina also has over 1400 match wins, 9 straight years winning 10+ titles (Steffi only won 10+ titles in I think 4 or 5 years), won a major in singles in 3 different decades and made multiple major finals in 3 different decades. She also made 1 more major final then Steffi did, although steffi has a far superior win % in major finals ( something like 72-56 or something).

    Its close between them. Martina was also decent on hardcourts despite during her career them being less present on the tour. She had 3 seasons where she went undefeated on hard (although one of those was only 12-0) and one where she went 30-2. Her career record on hard is like 298-50 or something. I am not 100% on all these numbers but Martina deserves to be right up there with Steffi. Its close. Both were phenominal women in their own ways.
     
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  3. BTURNER

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    It's a tad harder to win a super high percentage of those finals with two other potential GOAT nominees sharing your era. Evert did not do a ton of damage, in that stat with 4 wins over Martina in major finals, but Graf did the rest of the dirty work. No other potential GOAT candidate had that kind of luck.
     
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  4. suwanee4712

    suwanee4712 Professional

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    I think Graf's record of at least 4 titles at each slam is her best argument for GOAT. Although that stat is mitigated by the fact that tennis in the 90's evolved into one big baseline slugfest in which surface mattered little to individual players. For example Steffi never faced a Wimbledon draw like Evert did in 1986 where she had to face 3 true serve and volleyers in a row much less what she faced in the 70's. Not saying Steffi couldn't come through that just that she never faced it.

    Speaking of Chris, kudos to her for showing up on grass and putting up a very good record.
     
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  5. suwanee4712

    suwanee4712 Professional

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    As to Martina's clay record, Chris is often given the benefit of the doubt (as well she should) that the late 70's brought a de-emphasization of the French and the European clay tour which was largely struggling with facilities and attendence. I have little doubt that Martina could've won multiple titles in Berlin and Rome had she tried more during her prime. I think her first trip to Berlin in the 80's wasn't until 1986. Rome wasn't until 1987. If its a hole in her record its her own fault. But her French record (2 titles, 4 r/u) suggests that Martina's clay court prowess was considerable.

    For all of her strengths, Martina's mix of power, speed, and the grace of her sliding was tops for me in terms of movement on clay. Her 1984 demolition of Chris was sheer beauty.
     
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  6. NadalAgassi

    NadalAgassi Guest

    From 1982 to 1985 the belief was Martina's best on clay > Chris's best. The 1984 French final Chris didnt even play badly and still got destroyed. The 1985 French final the belief was Chris had to play out of her mind to beat a subpar Martina. In the 1986 French Chris was up and down all event, and actually played a bad first set of the final, and still came back to win over an in form Martina, so by 1986 this had obviously changed and Chris's best on clay > Martina's best again, but for several years before that it was not the case. For that to be so shows what a strong clay court Martina was. Plus the 1987 French where at 30 and past her prime she spanked Evert (granted Chris was even older but both were still playing strong tennis then) and then outplayed and should have beaten a prime soon to be #1 Graf on a surface Graf was supposed to dominate Martina but couldnt.
     
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  7. NadalAgassi

    NadalAgassi Guest

    Monica was the real #1 of 1990, 1991, 1992, and 1993, and Sanchez in 1994. Graf wasnt even the best player any of those years really. Computer rankings are often controversial (eg- Caroline Wozniacki). She did deserve the computer #1 in 1993 since Seles was unable to play after being nearly murdered by a crazed Graf fan in April, but the early part of the year when both Graf and Seles played showed who the best player that year was.


    Who cares, this isnt a thread about Seles. She is just one of many reasons (her being stabbed, Martina and Chris being old when Steffi arrived on the scene, lack of greats or consistent threats) Steffi's competition was weak and she still couldnt dominate or even be a true #1 for more than 2 years in a row ever.


    Not as high as Martina though who in years she won 2 slams like 1985 and 1987 was said to be in a "slump" by people.



    Graf emotional about the Seles stabbing, LOL! Please. Emotional with joy as she would have a free ride on tour for awhile. Sanchez as well, in fact even worse than Graf. Just look at how Sanchez celebrated with glee winning the Hamburg event days after the Seles stabbing, knowing her career would pick up steam with the women she was a useless 1-10 against gone (atleast Graf could compete with pre stabbing Seles, Sanchez was as useless as a dead mammel on the side of the road vs Seles), sickening.


    Martinez is a completely useless player on carpet. Just look at her WTA Championships record, no appearances in the semis despite being ranked top 3 for 4 years in a row during the epic low of the womens game after the Seles stabbing. Graf to lose 6-3, 6-3 to her pigeon on what is by FAR her worst surface (and one of Graf's best) is telling to her true form at the time.

    As for the other part do you dispute Seles spanked Graf in the Australian Open final. The last 2 sets Seles won by 2 service breaks each, it wasnt even close.


    The difference is the 93 U.S Open was a semifinal. A top player should be in form by that point if they are really playing well.


    So you really think Graf didnt care about losing to Nicole Provis since it was only Fed Cup? Why was she even playing it then.



    From 1990-1993, until being stabbed, she was. Graf was looking like a short Hewitt like transition champion between Evert/Navratilova and Seles, even if more successful than Hewitt as the 2 year transition #1.


    and whose fault was that? Graf didnt have to retire at barely 30. It isnt the others fault they felt they could take on the best well into their 30s, and Graf was scared of the power of the next generation so fled when she was still fully able to play and potentially contend alot longer.


    Graf at 27/28 was already a shadow of her old self, getting crushed by Amanda Coetzer of all people. You really think Graf at 17/18, the same ages Seles completely dominated womens tennis and Graf, was further from her prime than 29/30 year old Martina? Even more incredibly you think a 32 year old Martina was in her absolute prime, LOL! OK lets go along with that nonsense just for the sake of argument though. You seem to atleast concede Graf was prime in 1987, 1989, 1991. So even if Martina was prime 1985, 1986, 1987, 1991, that means with 3 of their 5 matches being in Graf's prime she still went a lowly 1-4 vs Navratilova at the U.S Open, and as a 22 year old #1 ranked player who had dominated most of the last 4 years lost to a well past her prime 34 year old Martina. Her one win Martina had to choke a 6-3, 4-2 lead to boot or it would be a perfect 5-0 for a 28-34 year old Martina over 16-22 year old Graf at the U.S Open, their most neutral meeting ground. How embarassing, especialy for someone whose fans argue her as the so called GOAT.


    In 1987 Martina won only 4 of 12 tournaments she entered, little to do with Steffi who only denied her 2. She was suffering beatdown losses to all kinds of players, including Chris who was even older than Martina, and some much lower ranked ones. This is the same women who was losing 2 matches a year at her peak. You really think was still prime Martina? Never mind the Martina that came after the visible 1987 decline.



    Again who cares, nobody is saying Seles is the GOAT. Just that she is an asterix on Graf's career. Anyway Seles faced Graf herself winning all those slams. Graf won only 1 slam ever facing prime Seles, and it was on grass where she is useless.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 2, 2012
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  8. Gizo

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    Navratilova not winning either the German or Italian Open titles during her career is not a hole on her CV in the slightest.

    Yes they were always big tournaments for the men. However for the women it was a completely different story. Rome was pretty much meaningless and a joke of a tournament until Sabatini came along and got the Italian fans interested in women's tennis, and who cared about Berlin before Graf emerged.

    During Navratilova's prime, Amelia Island and Hilton head were much bigger clay court tournaments than Berlin and Rome, and offered significantly more prize money. And her record at those tournaments was very good.

    In the past on this forum I've seen people using revisionist theory to say that Navratilova skipped the meaningless Berlin and Rome to avoid facing Evert on the European clay. LOL if Evert herself read that she would laugh at the stupidity of those comments.
     
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  9. suwanee4712

    suwanee4712 Professional

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    So happy for Kathy Horvath in Paris in 1983. But had Chris and Martina met in the French final that year it may have been one of their best ever. Chris was on a roll in the slams but Martina had already throttled her at the YEC.

    Agreed on the 1985 final. The match was exciting but overly romanticized in our memories. Martina, as Pam Shriver put it, played so average. She hit short and rolled her forehamd with excessive topspin that made her extremely attackable and did little to set up approaches. Their matches in 1984 at the US Open and 1987 at Houston and Wimbledon were better in quality to me.
     
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  10. BTURNER

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    I NEVER decide 'best' years because its always inevitably cherry -picking for an agenda. I look at a career. Martina was clearly the best clay courter in the world in 1984. That is the year, 1984. Not '82, 83, or 85, let alone 1975, 76,77,78,79, 80,81,86,87,88,89,or 90. Now all you have to do is stop picking and choosing and ask yourself on which surface was the disparity in wins/ losses the greatest in the Evert/ Navratilova rivalry for either one, NadalAgassi . Was it hard courts, grass, carpet or clay? Its a division problem

    Hard courts: Navratilova 9-7
    Clay courts: Evert 11–3
    Grass courts: Navratilova 10–5
    Carpet courts: Navratilova 21-14

    Now don't make excuses or explain it away. Just look at the disparity including events from the first time they met on clay to the last time they met on clay in 1988.

    Now then look at all those tourney's each won on clay and add them up and who they beat. Resist the temptation to 'interpret' or spin the scores, or label the opponents. This isn't even close in results. Now while I agree Martina could have won far more if she had entered more on the continent. I don't give credit for what she could have done. she walks off with two RG titles, 4 other RG finals and virtually nothing else on red clay for a 20 year career. Tis a fine record for a women's champion. Its much better than King's, and Williams for example. Its the worst record of the 7 women I listed who have clear GOAT CREDS.
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2012
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  11. DMan

    DMan Professional

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    Oh, Gurl, so sorry the meds haven't worked.
    The "real" no. 1 as opposed to the "unreal #1. ?!?




    But you seem to have made it about Seles! I still love it that Graf's competition was weak.....but Mons' wasn't (and wasn't Martina even older when Mons became #1?)
    And about Steffi not being #1 for more than 2 years in a row.....correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't Graf hold the record for most consecutive weeks at #1, as well as the most total weeks at #1? Interesting, considering she "couldn't dominate"!




    Wow, one career loss at the end of the season to the # player in the world is "telling" about Graf's "true form" at the time! Interestingly, Graf won the VS Championships the very next week ! And of course between July 1993 and April 1994, she lost 1 match - the Martinez match! Aren't you thanking your lucky stars she DID lose that match! ; - )

    Bud Collins and I disagree. Then again, I know you have precious little to recall in the Graf/Seles H2H, right? Just 5 measly victories in 10 years!




    Wow, Graf drops 1 set to Maleeva in a US Open semi, then beats her 61,60 int he next sets, and that just proves how "bad" she was!


    In your mind, she was looking like that.



    Nothing like knee surgery to make any tennis player feel like a shadow of what they used to be like. Then again, Seles could write the book about that!!

    You are the only one obsessed with, and who seems to be the only who can define who and when a player is in their "prime"!


    Ah, keep trying with that asterisk thing!
     
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  12. treblings

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    more like an obelix after her comeback:)
     
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  13. BTURNER

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    I agree with most of this. I was very clear to specify European and South American traditional red clay because it is quite a bit slower than the our green Har -Tru clay and red is the surface that has antecedents to Lenglen, Wills, Connolly, Bueno and truly tests the patience and stamina. One problem Martina never had was moving on clay. She grew up sliding just as every other European or Latin champion did, and moved beautifully so the faster stuff here absolutely worked well for her s/v game. If she wants to prove she can win tournaments on the really slow surfaces, she has to go where there are some.

    You are also right that the traditional European events (excepting RG) had lost a bit of lustre. I use those to offer as many options as possible for someone who is squeezed out of RG titles thanks to the ill fortune of being a contempory of Evert to gain cred on the sports slowest surface. I don't expect her or anyone else, to beat Evert to win cred, I just expect her to collect some titles with some competition, if she can't manage RG as often as other GOAT candidates.

    Yes I have heard partisans claim Martina dodged Evert on clay. Again you are right. Such claims are absurd. Navratilova was afraid to play no one anywhere. I think Martina was more likely trying to avoid getting homesick. She knows she is going to play RG, Eastbourne, and stay to the very end of Wimbledon. She'd rather not fly off to Europe two weeks earlier to hit Rome or Berlin, but ask yourself which other major champions either before or after Martina, have as few European skins on their walls. Must have had some meaning to the rest of them, including Darleen Hard, Bueno,Court, Goolagong, Wade.
     
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2012
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  14. Gizo

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    Well in women's tennis surface differences has never been that big a factor, with the lack of depth compared to the men's game and a lack of surface specialists. Really the difference between red and green clay in the women's game and during Martina's era wasn't significant.

    She won the Hilton Head title 4 times and the Amelia Island title 3 titles, so she was a multiple champion at the 3 biggest clay court tournaments available to her. She won 18 clay court titles in total which is a pretty hefty amount on her weakest surface.

    There was no incentive for her to pad out her clay court record by entering and winning poor quality European red clay events, and Evert regularly skipped those events as well.

    I agree though that overall during their careers (and not just counting peak play), those other 6 women were better on her weakest surface that she was on clay. Still I think her clay court record is strong enough in the grand scheme of things.
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2012
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  15. NonP

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    BTURNER, you're usually a fair-minded poster, but I must say you're letting your bias cloud your judgment here. As Gizo noted it's simply not the case that Navratilova was trying to dodge her competition in the years she skipped the European events on clay. And we must also keep in mind that the majors didn't always have the same utmost prestige, competition and prize money they do today. The AO is a classic example, and yes, so is the FO, if to a lesser extent. Ditto the European events.

    Your point about Martina's relative dearth of European titles would be valid if she were some kind of fast-court specialist who struggled to make a splash during the clay season, but we're talking about a GOAT who won two titles and also reached 4 finals at RG. To me it does seem that you're trying to manufacture a blemish where none exists, I must say.
     
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  16. BTURNER

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    You need to reread my post. We all agree that Martina did NOT-I repeat did NOT dodge Evert or clay. I was trying tosuggest the notion was silly. I offered one alternative thought. It did not work for her to be gone from home base that long if she expected to peak at the last week of W. Could be twenty others or combinations having nothing to do with Evert.


    Here's the list I propose for candidates: Lenglen, Wills, Connolly, Court, Evert, Navratilova, and Graf. Now how many RG titles did each win, and how many finals? Now its clear enough that Navratilova has the worst record of any of them on European clay whther you include the 1 week tourneys or not. Martina has 18 majors to her credit. 12 were won on grass courts, leaving only 6 times that she won hard or clay courts. ( Yes, I realize grass was more predominant w/ twice opportunities but still it DOES suggest a problem on slower surfaces. It took her longer to get first wins at both the Open ['83] and RG ['82] and the last wins were earlier ['87 & '84 ) As the surface slows, her span restricts. There is a blemish in that dearth on red clay, not much of one, and maybe an avoidable one with a hindsight no one really has.

    Soooo let's move her not just to # 5, or 4, 3, or 2 we'll shove that candidate to the very tip-top!!! I put her high on my list, higher than Evert. But not number 1 over Graf or maybe Lenglen, Wills, Court?. Martina is between 2-5 on my page.
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2012
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  17. BTURNER

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    Yes it is strong in the grand scheme! but not to get to the pinnacle over all of them. (Evert usually entered at least one preparatory red clay event when she wasn't doing team tennis. 5 Italians and 2 Germans resulted. She had her own blemish at Wimbledon) Geez I am not burying Martina at the bottom either. I really want to give it to her. My gut tells me it was in her all along even on the slowest courts. Hell it took Evert and Graf to take her down 4 other times. That is why I am willing to look 'down the ladder' for solid evidence.There ain't enough there to prove she isn't too fast heavy to beat all the rest.. If you asked me to include doubles in general GOAT consideration, I'd put her at number 1 myself.
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2012
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  18. NonP

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    But you still maintain that Martina's clay-court record is a blemish despite having conceded that she faced legit competition and that the European events by and large didn't feature the strongest draws in those years. That was really my beef, not that you buy the canard about Martina's clay-court credentials. Also you haven't addressed my point about the majors back then not being standardized as they are today.

    Um, Connolly has all of 2 FOs in her bag, the same # as Navratilova. And it makes no sense to harp on Martina's record at RG when it was by far her weakest major but one of Court's strongest and definitely Evert's most dominant. A fair comparison would be to look at the latter two's respective record at Wimbledon, and guess what, they won the event 3 times, just once more than Martina's triumphs at RG (and not even that if you look at Evert's AO record instead).

    C'mon, BTURNER, being biased is fine, but at least you should try to be fair.

    This is dubious hair-splitting at best. For the record, except for that lone win at the '81 AO there was hardly any significant difference between Martina's AO and USO records till '83, and after that her records at the USO were actually better. And you do know that both Martina and Evert skipped the FO in '76-'78, right? Again the majors weren't always the most important events back then. You can't just look at the raw stats.

    I have no problem with any of the women up there. I'm just taking exception to your reasoning re: Navratilova.
     
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  19. Gizo

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    The problem is that you are looking down the ladder in the wrong places. The bottom line is that the French Open was the only big European red clay tournament on the circuit during Navratilova's prime. There were no other important red clay tournaments she could enter. So Berlin and Rome records in that time mean about as much as Strasbourg and Estoril records do nowadays. Graf and Sabatini single handedly made the German and Italian tournaments worthwhile in later years.

    A player's Hilton Head and Amelia Island records from that time are a much better indicator of their clay court prowess given that they had much stronger fields. Navratilova winning 7 titles at the 2nd and 3rd biggest clay court events of her era really is all that matters..

    Red clay vs green clay is meaningless in the women's game when there was so little depth outside the top 5-10 and most players had the same style on all surfaces.

    And I agree with NonP that in Navratilova's prime not all 4 slams were as equal as they have been since 1988, with Wimbledon and the US Open being the two blue chip slams. The French Open was still a huge deal of course and clearly bigger than the Australian Open, but not quite as big as those 2 slams.
     
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  20. suwanee4712

    suwanee4712 Professional

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    Remember too that Martina and Chris basically did their scheduling together to spread themselves out for marketing purposes. EVERY tournament director wanted them in their events but that physically was not possible. Largely due to the sake of the tour and in fairness to themselves M and C scheduled as they did.

    The tour also encouraged other players of market value to play in certain places where their appeal was high. Also endorsements began including appearances at certain events. Which is a big reason why Martina spent so much time in Rome later in her career .....Sabatini and Capriati as well.
     
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  21. Dedans Penthouse

    Dedans Penthouse Hall of Fame

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    ^^^^^^^^^^
    Summed up thusly:
    :rolleyes:


    NOBODY! .... NOT LAVER, NOT COURT, NOT EMERSON, NOT NAVRATILOVA, NOT EVERT OR ANY OF THESE 'ALSO-RANS' DID ANYTHING ..... WHILE STEFFI DID EVERYTHING.

    Er, got it.

    THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR THIS ILLUMINATING "never did" THREAD AND DO PLEASE EXTEND OUR WARMEST REGARDS TO YOUR PAL JOE PIKE.
     
    #71
  22. BTURNER

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    You make some good points, both of you. I am not being stubborn, I just hate surface or stylistic bias so evident at times in the 80's . Maybe a look at fed cup performance when it was played in Europe will enlighten on how often there were Horvaths, and how often there were victories over top clay courters.

    Well that wasn't hard. Fed cup record was 38-0. Certainly no Horvaths. Maybe I am just plain wrong. It has happened before.
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2012
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  23. boredone3456

    boredone3456 Legend

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    Here is Martinas W/L record by surface according to Wikipedia

    Grass: 307-40
    Hard: 298-47
    Clay: 235-57
    Carpet: 604-83

    For the mentioning that Martina cannot be a GOAT due to being a major winner primarily in grass, look at her surface record. Her Hard court record is nearly identical to her grass record. There happened to be more majors played in grass and she was at her best there and others could take her more on a hardcourt but based on that it is not like she was a slouch on hard. She has 9 fewer match wins, thats like a tournament or 2s difference. Clay was obviously her worst surface but not immensely so based on that. Carpet was the most prevalent non slam surface for a while with all the VS/Avon championships events and she dominated those and the YEC (played on Carpet for many years) seriously, her surface record sort.of dispels the myth that Martina was only a contender on grass. She could win anywhere. 1400+ matches and 160+ tournaments won (both open era record) prove it. Did she duck out on clay sometimes, debatable..but she was no slouch on it.
     
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  24. ibbi

    ibbi Professional

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    This NadalAgassi guy is a comedian, right? We're supposed to discount Steffi's victories over Martina at Wimbledon because Martina was OLD (not so old that she couldn't come back and win for the 9th time in 1990 though), but we'll include 2 victories Martina had over Steffi at the US Open when Graf was a child with basically no major match experience against a player of that caliber? Calling anything prior to 1987 prime-Graf is a joke, and trying to write Martina off prior to 1989 at the very earliest, is also nothing but a farce.

    During that period they met 8 times, Graf lead 6-2, and held victories on all 4 surfaces.
     
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  25. BTURNER

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    boredon, there is no one here offering up such a myth. Obviously someone in the finals of RG 6 times is a contender by any measure, but there is a problem using your own stats in combination with fewer RG wins and clay tournament wins


    ON grass she won 86.9 of her matches, Graf won 82%, *Evert won 88%
    On carpet she won 86.25 % of her matches, Graf won 87.8%, *Evert won 84.4%
    On hard she won 84.2 % of her matches, Graf won 88%, * Evert won 89.4%
    On clay she won 75.7 % of her matches, Graf won 87%, *Evert won 94.1%

    *see post below for link

    Winning 76% is a healthy number, no doubt, but it is a measurable decline between the clay number and the rest.
    Navratilova's career clay stat at 75.7 % is the lowest number of any of these three modern era women on any surface by over almost 7 percentage points.

    But this stat really doesn't get to the nub which I narrowed to the clay of Europe and Latin America, as opposed to the faster stuff only we use. My guess is that if you subdivided green from red, you'd find a more precipitous and telling drop on a 'graff' (pun intended)
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2012
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  26. BTURNER

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    Looking for Evert's surface breakdown but its not on wiki. Edit: Found some from http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=258005. Evertfan supplied them to me and I posted way back when . Plopped them above for easy comparison. Can't at present verify them independently but they look and add up right.

    To re-emphasize that Navratilova clay percentage is the worst among any of the three, on any surface, by 7+percentage points. I made a valid point in the first place. How important surface equity is as a measure of GOAT is subjective, but there definitely is, comparatively, a slight blemish for Martina beyond distinctions between red or green clay. Interesting to note that Evert has a higher grass percentage than Martina.( no one seriously wants Evert's grass career over Martina!) that shows the limitations of this stat, and what a really looong career outside of the top 3 in the world, can do to with these numbers in isolation from other measures.

    In the case of Navratilova's clay stats, however the W/L career percentage re-enforces the dearth of RG titles won, and fewer number of clay, especially red clay tournaments won, collectively showing the same weakness by 3 measures. But Martina does get all those 'hostest with the mostest' records from a double decade career to balance most of the time. If we could compare the other 4 GOAT contenders I mentioned originally by career w/l percentage on any surfaces widely used at the time, I suspect it would look even worse for Martina!

    Is anyone persuaded my argument has merit beyond my theoretical 'bias' I have been accused of?
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2012
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  27. ctromano

    ctromano Rookie

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    GOLDEN SLAM 88... Great tennis player 4 sure!
     
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  28. boredone3456

    boredone3456 Legend

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    And yet despite being worse on clay then any great on any other surface she won more matches and more tournaments overall then they all did ( except maybe Court depending on where you look she is listed as having more tournaments won than Martina). She trumped Evert in tournies won and matches won, and in both those categories she blows Graf out of the water. You can say she has a blemish on clay, which she does in comparison to others, but despite that she still trumps them in quite a few areas which I think more than makes up for it.
     
    #78
  29. BTURNER

    BTURNER Hall of Fame

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    [for the record, boredon,Your post quotes my faulty 'over 8%' which is actually only over 7%. I edited my posts while you were typing] Sorry.

    Absolutely. she has the 'hostest with the mostest' records all sown up. That is what happens, when you play for as long as she did and stay in such great physical and competitive shape. but you take a career risk when you run for those quantity records. She also acquires more early round losses around her peak years irrespective of surface and worse career W/ L percentages on average. The clay blemish/ surface speed disparity in her results is a separate matter and measured in 3 methods. How you end up weighing it all is subjective. For me, I can handle the lower career percentage trade-off for high volume, but not the slower court weakness when there are others without one, who played broadly in the professional era. Its all very complicated when you throw in Lenglen and Wills era. Everything 's just a stab in the dark with that many variables.
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2012
    #79
  30. boredone3456

    boredone3456 Legend

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    My point is its not all just quantity. She has a blemish, sure, but in my mind all the following things by far outweigh the blemish:
    Most match wins
    Most tourny wins
    Major victories and multiple major finals in 3 different decades (4 if including doubles)
    Being ranked in the top 10 in 3 different decades
    10-4 H2H record against Chris in major finals (at least once at every major including a french beatdown)
    43-39 H2H against Chris (turned around from 4-22)
    8 YECs(?) - Or am I confusing her doubles stat here?
    9 Wimbledons- yes I know more disparity but its still monumental
    6 major wins in a row
    9 straight years winning 10+ Tournies

    I mean I know her clay record pales in comparison to others but at the same time she in a few other categories knocks them out of the water (in some places by a large distance). Some of them punch her out on clay, well she has a few numbers with which to punch right back. To me, its more than enough to make up the difference. If for you its not, no problem, I have always said I have no problem with calling Steffi GOAT, and in fact am almost considering coranking them at number 1.
     
    #80
  31. BTURNER

    BTURNER Hall of Fame

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    Most match wins
    Most tourny wins
    Major victories and multiple major finals in 3 different decades (4 if including doubles)
    Being ranked in the top 10 in 3 different decades
    10-4 H2H record against Chris in major finals (at least once at every major including a french beatdown)
    43-39 H2H against Chris (turned around from 4-22)
    8 YECs(?) - Or am I confusing her doubles stat here?
    9 Wimbledons- yes I know more disparity but its still monumental
    6 major wins in a row
    9 straight years winning 10+ Tournies

    The ones in bold are most impressive to me and put her over the top of Evert, who's resume is damn near as impressive w/ her 34 major finals, 13 yrs in a row winning a major, 10 clay majors won, in the 16 times she entered one 52 semis or better out of 56 majors entered, ranked top 4 in the world every week from 1973-1988 17 consecutive years! and 89.96% career w/l record

    LOL, What is it that none of us claim Lenglen, Wills or Connolly?
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2012
    #81
  32. boredone3456

    boredone3456 Legend

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    I think part of it is Connollys career was so short. Not that it is not impressive but if you choose her a lot of the backing for it is the assumption she was going to have Graf/Nav type numbers.

    With Lenglen and Wills none of us have ever seen them play and also many sources say their competiton was sub far fitness wise or ability wise. Plus anyone who called them GOAT would simply be dismissed as living in the stone age or something haha. I would probably of the two back Lenglen more because many of their contemporaries named lenglen the superior player.
     
    #82
  33. BTURNER

    BTURNER Hall of Fame

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    They did indeed. I used to pick Wills over Lenglen, but I switched. Sometimes the folks who watched or played them actually know a thing or two, we don't 80 years hence.

    You are right about Connolly. I have come to demand a 'bell shaped curve' on my tennis greats. I want to see how they go up, stay up and come down with time.

    We never really saw Borg or Connolly get old, start loosing in the odd early round, face those aggravating 30 year old body injuries and recuperate and then have to prime the motivational pump for his 16th RG tournament. That is an important piece of a career to know. They don't all do equally well with age, or know when to retire.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2012
    #83
  34. Steve132

    Steve132 Professional

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    At the time of the Wimbledon's Ladies centenary (1984) I saw some footage of all the leading women players since the First World War. At that time Navratilova was at her peak, and my reaction was that she would have beaten any of them easily - except for Lenglen.

    If anything, you may have understated the preference for Lenglen among their contemporaries. Virtually everyone who saw them both in their prime considered Lenglen to be the superior player. Wills won more majors, of course, simply because she played more of them. As memories of Lenglen faded people simply looked at major counts and decided that Wills must have been the better player.
     
    #84
  35. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    I agree. Lenglen was virtually unbeatable in her career winning I believe 80 some odd tournaments. Wills actually won far less and if I recall my stats did not win that many overall tournaments in her career. Don't get me wrong she won many tournaments but not as much as you would have thought. Evert for example won far more tournaments and I believe at around the same percentage. Of course there was no tour. Wills shined in the majors winning 19 of 22 that she completed and 19 of 24 overall.

    Lenglen was so dominant that they talked about her not losing a game in some tournaments.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2012
    #85
  36. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    I used to think Lenglen and Wills were on the same level but in doing the research on both I concluded Lenglen was the better player. We put too much on majors count today.

    Incidentally BTURNER while we never saw Borg get old we do know he won 106 tournaments by the time he was 25 and 11 majors in 27 played. That's domination of the highest level that I don't think can be matched by any 25 year old or perhaps even any age. Connolly I believe was being courted to play on tour against another top female player by Jack Kramer I believe. It could have been Betz but I am not sure. I'll check tomorrow. Connolly is another example of what might have been.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2012
    #86
  37. DMan

    DMan Professional

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    This is a thread about Graf, not Borg.

    But let's get one thing straight: Borg NEVER won 106 tournaments in his career. Not even of you count junior tournaments.
     
    #87
  38. boredone3456

    boredone3456 Legend

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    Borg won 101 tournaments that I can find as a pro. 64 were official ATP tournaments and the rest were exhibition/invitation tournaments that were not officially linked the ATP and are not listed on the ATP website. But yes Borg won over 100 tournaments.
     
    #88
  39. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    I have at least 105 tournaments that Borg won but a friend of mine who is a tennis historian says he knows of 106. Some of those tournaments I believe were WTC tournaments too.
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2012
    #89
  40. DMan

    DMan Professional

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    No, Borg did not win over 100 tournaments. A two player exo is NOT a tournament!

    Nice try though!
     
    #90
  41. DMan

    DMan Professional

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    Now, just where has my NadalAgassi GURL gone? I miss her so! Words cannot express.

    Come back gurl.....we've got so much more Steffi stuff to talk about?
     
    #91
  42. iTennisPress

    iTennisPress New User

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    Yes, Steffi even didn't vote in favor of Seles to return as No. 1 in 1993 or 95. It shows she feared to Seles play of dominaation! (hhe hee hee..)
     
    #92
  43. iTennisPress

    iTennisPress New User

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    I mean questioning any proof for that?
     
    #93
  44. DMan

    DMan Professional

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    Oh, new user Tennis Press (or is it NadalAgassi gurl in bad drag?!)

    There was no such thing as a vote for #1 in 1993 or 1995. My poor misguided one. As far as who was afraid of Seles 'play of domination'....whatever that means. Why would Graf fear Seles? She had a dominating H2H over Seles! It wasn't until 1993 that Seles had a win over Graf on a surface other than clay....and it was a tough 3 set win on slow Rebound Ace. B that time, Graf had crushed Seles on every surface.....that's total domination!


    hee-hee-hee!!!

    (and is now the time you get bitter and angry, and post irrational and nasty comments in response? Ah, Selestials! Pathetically predictable as always.
     
    #94
  45. iTennisPress

    iTennisPress New User

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    There was a voting for preserving Monica's ranking at No. 1 (co-no. 1), all top players voted against Seles except Sabatini.
     
    #95
  46. DMan

    DMan Professional

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    Except Graf was not present at the Italian Open when the vote took place!
     
    #96
  47. iTennisPress

    iTennisPress New User

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    So, did Steffi say she had no problem for giving No. 1 rank to Seles in her comeback? Did she hint show stand with Sabatini to save Seles' rank?

    any proof?
     
    #97
  48. suwanee4712

    suwanee4712 Professional

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    I believe Sukova may have voted in favor of freezing Seles' ranking at #1 as well.

    I think most looked at the situation more or less the same as an injury which happens all the time without protection. I remember that at the time the vote was more symbolic than anything else because 1) Seles was probably going to come back still at a high level, and 2) womens tennis really did not have the depth that would necessitate "protection" for someone of Seles' stature. I think Monica and her family took it personally though.
     
    #98
  49. NonP

    NonP Professional

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    BTURNER, I know this is old news, but for the record you should know full well that your original contention was regarding Navratilova's relatively small number of clay-court titles (particularly at RG), not her W/L %. It was with regard to the former, not the latter, that I took you to task for your "bias." Let's try not to misrepresent other posters' claims, even when it's not intentional.

    And speakng of which, I find it odd that you speak of the limitations of the W/L stat but then fail to note how it might give a false impression of Martina's clay-court prowess. For your info, and particularly important to this discussion, high W/L %'s have been almost exclusively the domain of baseliners throughout tennis history, as they generally play with a greater margin of error than their net-rushing rivals. Of course exceptions like Mac's '84 and Martina's best years exist, but they're exceedingly rare, and only attributable to exceptional and unconventional talents. If anything it's to Navratilova's great credit that she was able to dominate her competition even on her worst surface, despite the norms of history. And don't forget, she and Evert herself skipped the FO in some of their prime years.

    Add all these together and it becomes increasingly harder to hold Martina's clay-court record against her.
     
    #99
  50. kiki

    kiki Banned

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    Maria Esther Bueno: One of the best ever players with sensational talent, seems very undervalued and undertalked here...
     

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