Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by Vegito, Mar 14, 2011.
Oh! The good old days!
Well, Orantes beat Connors in the Final, so I don't think it is that far a stretch to think Villas could have beaten Connors in the final. And this was when I think Forrest Hills was on clay, a surface that is more suited to Argentine and Spanish players since they grow up playing on that surface.
Wish I could see this match. I believe Orantes trailed 0-5 in the fourth set and was down match points, but came back to win in 5 sets.
Orantes beating Connors in the final was a big upset. It was thought that Orantes would be too tired after that marathon comeback win over Vilas to beat Connors, but Orantes was still on such a high from beating Vilas the way he did and he used that momentum to beat Connors.
I know it technically was an upset against Connors but I saw Orantes throughout that tournament and I thought he was playing at the highest level. I really didn't think it was much of an upset.
I was lucky enough to be at that match and it obviously had long grueling rallies. I watched the match intently and when it was 5-0 in favor of Vilas I moved to a seat near the portal so I could leave quickly. Well you know the story, I had to be there for a much longer time.
Orantes defeated Nastase, Vilas and Connors to win that US Open. That's pretty impressive. Incidentally he was in total control during his match against Nastase despite the fact Nastase won one set. Nastase played very well in my opinion but Orantes was too much for him.
Great that you actually saw the match, pc1
I have seen the 1975 US Open final, and I seem to remember the commentators speculating that Orantes might be too fatigued to beat Connors, but Orantes showed hardly any signs of fatigue and actually looked in the zone at times. Orantes played very smart tennis to win.
Are those CB 3.3s?
Weird thing is that Orantes could almost get into a "touch" zone where the ball seems to be on a string to him. He hit that zone at 0-2 in the third set and won the last six games to win the set. Maybe it's faulty memory because it was long time ago but those six games seemed to pass by really quickly, relatively speaking of course. I was a Vilas fan at that time because he was on constantly on the PBS tennis broadcasts during the Summer tennis circuit and I grow to enjoy his play. But in retrospect I'm not sure if Orantes' best on har tru wasn't better than Vilas' best.
It was one of Orantes peaks.He was a player of peaks, when everything was flowing and his confidence brimmed.Here is a guy that has beaten all the great players from the end of the 60´s to the early 80´s.All of them, and more than once.
I recall that he was called "Lazarus" Orantes, because of that resurection, which was almost a miracle, similar to Cochet vs Tilden in 1927.In fact, Orantes has been one of the greatest, if not the greatest himself, specialist in comebacks.
He won the 1976 Masters final after a great comeback.He beat Nastase on a comeback on DC tie, and did the same vs taylor in another come back miracle.Finally, he won the Barcelona event over Dibbs... after another legendary comeback.
He beat Connors, even easier, in the 1977 Indianapolis finals.Indy was one of the top clay courts tournaments, a sort of Master 9 of today.
Interesting about Nastase, and impressive. I always think of the Vilas and Connors matches, but with Nastase in there that's a great set of wins in the last 3 rounds.
I think so too. Vilas hit more impressive winners in that '77 final, but what Orantes did in the '75 final was so solid, so free of errors, he shut Connors out. He gave Connors virtually nothing to work with, no way to get into the match.
If Vilas had beaten Orantes, I have a hard time seeing him beat Connors in the final. They met in the '76 semis and Connors overpowered him 4, 2 and 1. Of course in '76 Connors was playing great ball, and maybe in '75 he might not have done the same to Vilas. But Vilas really had his breakthrough as a champion in '77, first by winning RG and then with that truly great victory over Connors at USO. Could he have reached that self-assurance as early as '75? Maybe but I doubt it.
I'm looking up these matches, but he has only one Davis Cup match against Nastase, a straight-set loss: http://www.daviscup.com/en/players/player/profile.aspx?playerid=10002336
He does have a win over Nastase in doubles from two sets down. And a five-set win in singles over Taylor, from 2 sets to 1 up.
I was a ballboy at that match and I can tell you that when Orantes started his comeback Vilas started talking to himself on the changeovers and was totally gassed. He hit a wall and Orantes just keep grinding Vilas was a mess after - he could hardly breathe towards the end of the 5th set and remember this was before Tiriac took over his training...etc it was after this loss that Vilas asked Tiriac to "help" him.
Great live accounts PC1 and Gavna! It's great to hear from posters that were there at a match between two great players. It sounds like Orantes was at a great level during that entire tournament on the "rubico" courts as we called them. Gavna, that's very interesting that you mentioned that match and how Vilas asked for Tiriac's assistance. He did push Vilas very hard with his training and it paid off later.
"I was a Vilas fan at that time because he was on constantly on the PBS tennis broadcasts during the Summer tennis circuit and I grow to enjoy his play."
With B. Collins and D. Dell.
I was at that match too and Connors overpowered Vilas. Vilas couldn't handle the Connors power off both sides. One thing that may have favored Vilas in 1975 over 1976 however was that Vilas was in great form in 1975 if I recall and he wasn't quite up to that in 1976.
Facing Connors is tough and I don't think Vilas was prepared to handle that power. I think in 1977 he knew what to expect.
Totally agree - Vilas in 77 was a new player under Tiriac aside from the mental changes Ion made just look at pics from 74 and 75 compared to 77 and Vilas got very very fit. In 76 Conners was on a mission I got to work the 74, 75, 76, 77, 78 US Opens and The WCT events in 78, 79 and 80 when it was at Forest Hills awesome since I lived only 6 blocks away at the time. Orantes in the finals was just sooo smooth and gave Conners nothing, Manolo was in the zone for sure.
The other thing I remember most about 75 was that Navratilova defected just before mens finals at the facility.
Orantes had a great game to match Vilas.he´d take those looping, high bouncing shots and sliced them down, into a corner.Vilas thrived on rythym and pace, orantes would change rythyms and pace, depriving Vilas of an edge.
Vilas seldom changed tactics.I saw him lose to Lendl twice in a row and to Wilander twice in a row in Gran prix Finals, and he never would be able to try another tactic.
But, surprisingly, I´ve seen him do that on Australia´s grass, opening lots of angles and following serve with a volley.May be it is a menthal think or may be it´s Tiriac influence.
Wonderful video, thanks Vegito.
That pic looks like Vilas got a bad bounce and was early/off balance on his shot prep.
so Orantes basically saves all those match points by serve & volleying. and this guy was considered a typical 'claycourter' of the time. god tennis today is boring.
"so Orantes basically saves all those match points by serve & volleying. and this guy was considered a typical 'claycourter' of the time. god tennis today is boring."
I've been watching quite a bit of tennis since the early 70s and I've heard the "tennis today is boring" in every single era including the mid-70s.
No matter what style is in vogue people think some other era was more exciting. I look back at some of those 70s matches and it looks like they were playing in slow motion. For me, W I think it was '92, plus or minus a year, may have been the low-point. That Sampras-Goran final. I'll take Djoker v. anyone over that snoozefest.
Remember that Borg-Vilas final at the FO (with 90 shot rallies).!?
There is much truth here.
I readily remember watching a Wimbledon "breakfast" men's match in the 1970s. My mother sat down to watch also. She stayed about 2 minutes, then got up to leave and said: "This grass-court tennis is boring. All it is is serve, volley. Point over. Serve, volley. Point over. No rallies. How boring!"
These rallies are fantastic ! Today, in ten seconds, the point is finished, even on clay. That is boring !
Here's the epic 86 stroke rally between Borg and Vilas from the 1978 French Open final, posted by krosero back in 2008.
The resurection of Lazarus, was the headtitle of the New York Times.how appropiate...but Orantes had a long tradition of comebacks ( he also suffered some by his opponents, namely Borg in the 1974 FO final)
Orantes has had some other wins against Nastase,Vilas,Connors ( and Borg) along his carereer.In the 1977 US CC championships at Indianapolis, one of the world´s biggest cc events, beat Connors again: 6-1, 6-3 ( Connors got his revenge at that year´s USO quarterfinals)
Yes the US Open at Forest Hills was on clay in 1975, 1976 and 1977.
I remember that, it was when Vilas had that great run, there was a tournament on every wknd it seemed, then Borg ended it all at the French Open final - great days..
He was mainly a baseline playet but one of the most agressive, looking forwards coming to the net
He had great hands at the net
i hate to admit this but i was there and left after the first 2 sets..I remember Vilas' bright all yellow outfit on stadium court and obviously it was under the lights..I used to go almost everyday and i was tired..I think the tickets cost $8 or $9 dollars
The Orantes/Vilas rivalry on clay ended abruptly in 1980.They were scheduled to play a fourth rounder at Paris; Orantes was ready to play but, at last minute, Tiriac announced Vilas was...INJURIED¡¡¡.
In this case, he should be defaulted and Orantes qualified for the QF.But that didn´t happen.Umpire Richard Hoffman gave Vilas another chance and rescheduled the match for the next day.Orantes wrotte a letter to ITF President, Philip Chartrier in ( correct) protest.To no avail.He rejected to replay the match and was defaulted.
Remember Hings vs Graf at the 99 RG?
Separate names with a comma.