Weakest Year Ever - 1986

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by McEnroeisanartist, Oct 18, 2012.

  1. McEnroeisanartist

    McEnroeisanartist Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2006
    Messages:
    2,182
    Was this the weakest year ever for tennis?

    Only 3 Grand Slams were played.

    Lendl defeated Pernfors in the French Open final losing 9 games.
    Becker defeated Lendl in the Wimbledon final winning in straight sets.
    Lendl defeated Mecir in the U.S. Open final losing 6 games.

    Lendl defeated Becker in straight sets in the Masters Played in January and again the Masters Played in December.

    The only good matches that I can think of were the U.S. Open semifinals Mecir-Becker and the Stratton Mountain Semifinals Becker-McEnroe.

    This year McEnroe and Connors fell from #2 and #4 to #14 and #8, respectively.

    Oh yeah, and Mats Wilander, the world #3, did not even reach a Grand Slam semifinal.
     
    #1
  2. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2005
    Messages:
    7,864
    You weren't even born in '86, so maybe you should just stick to creating your many useless Federer threads.

    Oh yeah, the guys he lost to at the 3 majors were Chesnokov, Cash, Mecir. The depth from 5-20 was much higher back then compared to today(didn't you just start a thread saying that Nadal will finish the year #4 without having won a match in the 2nd half of the year? what does that say about the field?)
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2012
    #2
  3. NadalAgassi

    NadalAgassi Guest

    didn't you just start a thread saying that Nadal will finish the year #4 without having won a match in the 2nd half of the year? what does that say about the field?

    Bingo! End of thread. Atleast the pro tour was about 100 players back then, rather than about 4.
     
    #3
  4. McEnroeisanartist

    McEnroeisanartist Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2006
    Messages:
    2,182
    I was born in 84, hence my name. But, I have more historical knowledge and perspective than the vast majority, except you. Not sure why Federer threads are useless. I think many find them interesting. More interesting than a lot of the opinionated drivel that is spewed by most posters. The top 10 year end of 1986:
    1 Ivan Lendl
    2 Boris Becker
    3 Mats Wilander
    4 Yannick Noah
    5 Stefan Edberg
    6 Henri Leconte
    7 Joakim Nystrom
    8 Jimmy Connors
    9 Miloslav Mecir
    10 Andres Gomez

    6 Grand Slam champs, and one future Grand Slam champ. Total grand slams won by the players at the time: 19

    The top 10 of 2012:
    1 Federer
    2 Djokovic
    3 Murray
    4 Nadal
    5 Ferrer
    6 Berdych, Tomas
    7 Tsonga, Jo-Wilfried
    8 Del Potro, Juan Martin
    9 Tipsarevic, Janko
    10 Monaco, Juan

    5 Grand Slam champs, who knows how many future Grand Slam champs. Total grand slams won by the players at the time: 35.

    Of course, 1986 and 2003 were the only years in the open era, where all the men's singles grand slam finals were only 3 sets.
     
    #4
  5. jrepac

    jrepac Professional

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2009
    Messages:
    1,387
    1986

    It was an odd year, surely.
    Mac was losing his Mojo altogether and Lendl was on the rise but not quite the dominant force he would soon become. Still, 2 of 3 majors is quite good, no?
    Connors had a god awful year and was really showing his age....definitely not the best year for American tennis. I really thought going into '86, Wilander would have a break through year, but it did not quite happen.
     
    #5
  6. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2009
    Messages:
    25,065
    Location:
    Cwmbran, Wales
    Lendl on the rise in 1986? I thought 1986 was Lendl's best year, he won both Masters titles at MSG as well as winning 2 of the 3 majors (French Open, US Open) and being runner-up in the other major (Wimbledon).
     
    #6
  7. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    21,049
    Nadal is a much deserving #4 than Wilandar at #3. He won RG, made the AO final, and 2 Master Shields. Wilander only won 2 titles in '86, it's possible for him to reach that high because the weak competition allow him to get there. Raonic, Cilic, Monaco have won multiple titles this year and they aren't even in the top 10. That speak volumes.
     
    #7
  8. kiki

    kiki Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    Messages:
    18,715
    Fully agree with this post.Still, 86 was not as good as 85 or 87 and 88, but still a good year.
     
    #8
  9. kiki

    kiki Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    Messages:
    18,715
    I agree Wilander did not deserve such a high position that year but reason is simple: the ATP rankings worked in a different way and kept the full results of the former year until the equivalent week of next year would erase it.If you had, say, 10 great months in 1985, you could keep very highly ranked until those 10 months had been completely erased.I think current system is better.

    Ashe, while retiring in the middle of 1979 kept highly ranked till the first quarter of 1980.Reason is that he had a sensational first half of 1979 and until those results were not completely erased, he could be highly ranked...even if retired long time before.
     
    #9
  10. McEnroeisanartist

    McEnroeisanartist Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2006
    Messages:
    2,182
    Again, I can not think of any great matches from that year.

    I suppose Pernfors at the French Open was a great story beating Edberg in the round of 16 and Becker in the quarterfinals and Leconte in the semifinals. Lendl-Gomez in the quarterfinals that year was interesting as Lendl lost the first set 7-6, won the second set 7-6, and then didn't lose a game in sets 3 and 4.

    Wimbledon had nothing of significance that year, unless you count Lendl's grittiness in winning 5 setters in the quarterfinals and semifinals against opposition he never should have.
     
    #10
  11. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2009
    Messages:
    25,065
    Location:
    Cwmbran, Wales
    Mecir vs. Becker at the 1986 US Open was a very good match. There's also Connors vs. Lendl at 1986 Boca West, where Connors got himself defaulted after losing his cool with the umpire.
     
    #11
  12. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2009
    Messages:
    25,065
    Location:
    Cwmbran, Wales
    Tim Mayotte was at his grass-court peak at that time. He had won Queen's Club, gotten to the quarter finals of Wimbledon against the man he would never beat (0-17 against Lendl by the end), and he pushed Lendl to 5 sets (losing 7-9 in the fifth set).

    Zivojinovic is tough on grass too. He had upset Wilander at 1985 Wimbledon and had a famous 5-set win over McEnroe in the quarter finals of the 1985 Australian Open.
     
    #12
  13. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2007
    Messages:
    12,658
    Location:
    Bierlandt
    Ouch!!

    So much for the billions of players forming the present talent-pool that TMF is always going on (ad infinitum) about.

    And how that proves this is the greatest era in the history of the game.


    As I always suspected: it sounds convincing, but the logic is sieve-like.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2012
    #13
  14. Nadal_Power

    Nadal_Power Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2010
    Messages:
    506
    Boca Raton 1/2 between Ivan and Jimbo.. what else do you need :D
     
    #14
  15. NadalAgassi

    NadalAgassi Guest

    For all we know Nadal might already be retired and even if he were still probably wont lose his #4 ranking until atleast April, having not played any tennis for roughly 10 months under a 12 month ranking system. That speaks volumes to the field today.
     
    #15
  16. NadalDramaQueen

    NadalDramaQueen Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2012
    Messages:
    1,561
    It could also have something to do with the fact that at least (quick check) 4500 out of his 6995 total points were won during the clay season. Rafa has almost always been able to dominate the clay season to such an extent to make up for being subpar in the latter part of the season.

    In addition, the guy has already won a slam and made the final of another. How many people are supposed to surpass that? Even if you have a competitive top 100, there are still only four slams. It really isn't shocking that he won't drop out of the top four.

    As for everyone being upset that only the top four can win anything worth winning, that has been discussed enough already.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2012
    #16
  17. 90's Clay

    90's Clay Legend

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2012
    Messages:
    7,224
    I think you are confusing 1986 with 2006. There have been more horrible years from the early 2000's-present (barring a few years) in terms of inconsistency, underachievers, lack of depth lack of talent, , lack of anyone doing anything, then there was from the 60's to the 90s
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2012
    #17
  18. Gizo

    Gizo Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    May 15, 2007
    Messages:
    1,689
    1986 was a very underrated season of dominance from Lendl's point of view.

    His record at the 4 biggest tournaments that year was outstanding. He dropped just one set en-route to the RG title (in his QF against Gomez) and just one set on his way to the US Open title (in his QF against Leconte). At Wimbledon he showed tremendous fighting spirit to win those back to back 5 set matches against Mayotte and Zivojinovic and reach the final. At the Masters he came through a very difficult draw against Edberg, Gomez, Noah, Wilander and Becker to win the tournament without dropping a set.

    Plus he won other very big titles that year at Philadelphia, Boca West, Milan and Rome. All in all in 1986 he entered 15 tournaments, winning 9 titles, finishing as the runner-up 3 times and a losing semi-finalist twice. Toronto was the only event that he failed to reach the semis or better in. His 6 defeats in 1986 came against Becker 3 times, Edberg, Noah and Curren, so he had no 'bad losses' that year.

    His record at RG, Wimbledon, the US Open and the Masters was identical 1987. Plus that year he beat Wilander in his RG and US Open finals as opposed to Pernfors and Mecir, and beat Edberg at Wimbledon. However in 1987 he won one less title and suffered one more defeat. Plus that year he had losses against David Pate and Peter Lundgren. Both statistically and in-terms of his overall standard of play, I think that his 1986 was slightly better than his 1987.

    The US media were labelling the US Open as the Czechoslovakian Open around that time. From 1985-1987, all 6 singles champions in the men's and women's tournaments, and 9 out of the 12 finalists, were born in Czechoslovakia. In 1986, all 4 finalists (Lendl, Mecir, Navratilova and Sukova) were born there. Talk about domination.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2012
    #18
  19. NadalAgassi

    NadalAgassi Guest

    Yes year end #3 in 2006 was Davydenko who made 1 slam semifinal that year where he feel meekly to Federer. A player who in his career made 0 slam finals. Year end #4 was James Blake who made 1 slam quarterfinal that year, and who in his career never made a slam semifinal. #3 in the World early that year was Ivan Ljubicic whose only ever slam semifinal was on his worst surface at Roland Garros in 2006. 20 year old Nadal was still the overwhelming #2 despite winning 0 non clay Masters this year, and posting results of DNP, quarterfinals, and semifinals at the years big 3 hard court events.
     
    #19
  20. AndrewD

    AndrewD Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2004
    Messages:
    6,581
    Nope, I think 2009 was a much weaker year. Federer wins Wimbledon because Roddick chokes. Federer loses the US Open because he chokes. Federer wins the French because someone else beat Nadal. Nadal wins the Aus because he doesn't choke.

    All up I'd rather have 1986. At least no-one won their major because the other bloke choked. You could also make a very good case that Cash was playing so well he would have won even if Becker hadn't been upset by Doohan. Oh, and they all had personality (Lendl never lacked personality, he just chose not to show it).
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2012
    #20
  21. Nadal_Power

    Nadal_Power Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2010
    Messages:
    506
    And what about bloody 2005., when Federer and Nadal won every third ATP crown and almost all of 14 big ones
     
    #21
  22. McEnroeisanartist

    McEnroeisanartist Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2006
    Messages:
    2,182
    They both had a tremendous season. Two all time greats having an awesome year. Every grand slam final that year was immeasurably more entertaining than the crap finals of 86.
     
    #22
  23. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    21,049
    So that explained why Wilander only needed to win 2 titles to end the year #3
    while Nadal won a slam, made another final and 2 MS and has to settle #4. Tennis is so much easier not to reach the top. Sure, that makes a lot of sense.:rolleyes:
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2012
    #23
  24. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    21,049
    Nadal had a great year winning 11 titles that includes RG and 4 MS and he had to settle being #2. Unlike Sampras in '98 who only 4 titles and ended the year #1.

    Unfortunately some people believe tennis is getting easier to compete. When the population reaches 14 billions, expect the game to be as easy as walking in the park. :roll:
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2012
    #24
  25. NadalAgassi

    NadalAgassi Guest

    LOL Nadal never won 11 titles and ended a year at #4. In 2005 he ended the year at #2 with 11 titles but did so with the following slam and WTF results: 4th round, win, 2nd round, 3rd round, DNP. Yet with those he was thousands of points ahead of the World #3.
     
    #25
  26. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    21,049
    It was a typo, he was #2 in 2005.

    Even this year Nadal had a better year than Sampras '98 and still has to settle at #4. Nole,Fed, Murray, Nadal is good enough to be #1 in the 90s based on their ranking points.

    The point is it takes a lot more for today's player to reach the top.
     
    #26
  27. NadalAgassi

    NadalAgassi Guest

    Nadal's 2005 was not neccessarily a "better" year. Yes he won alot of puny clay events, and did very well winning Masters. However his slam results outside the RG title sucked and the WTF you build up as some godly event he didnt even play. Sampras in 1998 reached quarters, 1st round, win, semis, and semis of the Slams and WTF, so did far better than Nadal. Nadal's slam results in 2005 would be an utter embarassment for a #1.

    You also have to factor into the extreme lack of depth in the mens game today to why Djokovic, Federer, Murray, and Nadal are all so easily able to collect points. Others have pointed this out too, the 5-20 ranked players in the current field are probably the worst in history (even the Federer era of 04-07 was slightly better in that regard than now, although not much). The World #5 is a poor mans Chang minus any sort of champions mentality who is light years behind the top 4 in ability, and it only goes down from there, scanning the names you see headcase, erratic, headcase, choker, almost ways injured, overranked journeyman, etc...
     
    #27
  28. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    21,049
    11 titles > 4 titles.

    Sampras didn't win any significant title outside of Wimbledon while Nadal won 4 MS on clay and hard court. Sampras lost 18 times in '98, there's no player with Sampras results can end the year #1 in this era. Nadal also accumulated more atp points(convert Sampras's point to current ranking system).


    Having 4 great players doesn't necessary means the field is weak. It means they are better than their peers. The players below them could be more accomplished playing in the previous generations. They are facing the current top 4 when no top 4 in any era that can reach their top level. To say the field is weak is like saying NBA in the '80 was weaker than in the '70 because the Lakers/Celtics dominated their respective conference.
     
    #28
  29. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    21,049
    You're absolutely right. Ranking is base on 1 year, it's not about how much time a player was sidelined during the year, but it's about his accomplishment. At the end of the year, Nadal still has 1 FO, 1 AO final and 2 MS. That certainly good enough to be #4. As I've mentioned before, Sampras had 4 titles and ended the year #1.

    If Nadal isn't warrant for being #4, what does that say about players in the past generations have accomplished less and ranked higher? That doesn't look good.
     
    #29
  30. kiki

    kiki Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    Messages:
    18,715
    There have been a bunch of best top 4 players in history-Djokovic and Murray are short yet.
     
    #30
  31. chrischris

    chrischris Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2010
    Messages:
    2,725
    1986 was a great year imo. Lendl was actually a great player although we loved to 'hate' him back then.
    Gas was cheap and AGW wasnt spinning out of control nor were tennis balls..
    Music was better also.Live aid was only a year old memory.Tom Petty , John Mellencamp and Bruce Springsteen were all peaking .. ah nostalgia.
     
    #31
  32. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    21,049
    Take the top 4 basketball players from one state and compare to the top 4 players in a nation and tell me which group is better. That's all I have to say.
     
    #32
  33. Gizo

    Gizo Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    May 15, 2007
    Messages:
    1,689
    One highlight of 1986 was Cash's Davis Cup heroics as he led them to the title that year.

    He played in 10 live singles/doubles rubbers that year, and won 9 of them, including getting 3 points for Australia in the final against Sweden, with victories against Edberg, Edberg/Jarryd in the doubles with Fitzgerald and Pernfors.
     
    #33
  34. kiki

    kiki Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    Messages:
    18,715
    and what is your point?
     
    #34
  35. kiki

    kiki Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    Messages:
    18,715
    Good music but the end of the great bands.1970´s is the Golden Era of Music, with almost all GOATS in it.
     
    #35
  36. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2007
    Messages:
    12,658
    Location:
    Bierlandt
    I wonder if the tennis talent-pool was larger back in 1986?

    Was tennis more popular then? Were more people playing?
     
    #36
  37. krosero

    krosero Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    Messages:
    5,582
    Cash-Pernfors was probably the best match of the year. Great contrast of styles and very entertaining.
     
    #37
  38. kiki

    kiki Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    Messages:
    18,715
    In a very rich decade, I´ll agree that 1986 looks dull to the rest of the years.
     
    #38
  39. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    21,049
    Another words...7 billions > 3 billions. :wink:
     
    #39
  40. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    21,049
    More popular in the US, but today, the sport has spread well across the globe. The eastern world are much involved. We have what it's call an "asian swing" after the USO. So no, the talent pool is larger today.
     
    #40
  41. kiki

    kiki Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    Messages:
    18,715
    in the 80´s, Asia had Amritraj,Matusoka and Krishnan.Other than Nikishori , how many more?

    Maybe there are a bit more of eastern europeans, due to an increase of popularity in Russia and Ukraine,and Serbai and Croatia but no Fibak, no Taroczy, czechs quite worse than then...I can´t see any signal that the pool has increased.I´d say it has decreased a lot.
     
    #41
  42. 90's Clay

    90's Clay Legend

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2012
    Messages:
    7,224
    Once Nadal and Fed retire, the popularity of the sport will PLUMMET, regardless of how many more nations are involved in the sport now
     
    #42
  43. kiki

    kiki Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    Messages:
    18,715
    Tim was a steady, experienced grass court player.It amazes me how long he kept a great record at both, Wimbledon and the Australian Open.I think he never got beaten before the quarters at the All England for 7 or 8 successive years.
     
    #43
  44. Gizo

    Gizo Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    May 15, 2007
    Messages:
    1,689
    That was such a great era for grass court tennis. There were so many dangerous players floating around on the surface who could take out or at least scare the hell out of the top guys, as well as a lot of good rivalries at the top end and aesthetically pleasing tennis to watch.

    The 1990s also had strong competition on grass, but with more emphasis on power and the serve, grass court tennis wasn't as fun to watch any more.

    In a way I'm sort of glad that Lendl never won Wimbledon, Mac never won RG, Borg never won the US Open etc. If those guys had all won everything it would have been pretty boring and not as much fun to analyse their careers.
     
    #44

Share This Page