what can you tell me about michael stich?

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by mantra33, Dec 17, 2009.

  1. mantra33

    mantra33 New User

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    when i looked at the names of the last twenty wimbledon winners i stumbled across his name. embarassingly i didn't even know who he was. never heard of him. i found two videos of him and his game seems fantastic. beating sampras and becker in two finals.

    against sampras

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k7dPWjc94xg

    against becker

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qo85SK6BUzQ

    what can you tell me about him? how good was he?
     
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  2. stapler

    stapler Professional

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    I didn't know about him until I read Sampras' autobiography, but it talked about how Sampras though Stich had the best 2nd serve in the game. Take that how you want.
     
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  3. morten

    morten Hall of Fame

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    amazing player, best timing i have ever see, allround game, hardly any weaknesses, classic game and strokes, great touch and power, Talentwise he is top5 ever IMO, but not enough desire to win...
     
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  4. svijk

    svijk Semi-Pro

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    i'd recommend google search
     
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  5. big bang

    big bang Hall of Fame

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    agree with you! beautyfull all-court game..
     
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  6. eagle

    eagle Hall of Fame

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  7. matchmaker

    matchmaker Hall of Fame

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    Perhaps the most elegant player ever to have trodden on a tennis court.

    He seemed to move effortlessly, he could acceleralte seemingly with a still arm.

    He had every shot in the book. A true all-courter.

    I have never understood how he could not win more majors.
     
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  8. nickynu

    nickynu Semi-Pro

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    In the UK he does some commentary with the BBC, and he is very funny in a sarcastic kind of way, but underneath that he has amazing knowledge of the game and is rarely wrong.

    AS a player you wont see a better server in fact his volleys and backhand were up there amongst the very best too. Fluid and graceful. Kind of a federer prototype if you will. One reason I think he didnt win more was I think he got a bit hung up with the whole cult of Boris Becker, he always seemed to be fighting for recognition in Germany and seemed to have a sense of injustice about him which perhaps made him take his eye of the ball. He married a stunning girl who I believe was also more famous in Germany than him as a tv presenter.

    Look up some old you tube footage and concentrate on the serve (so simple but deadly) and the backhand, anybody could do worse than copy his mechanics
     
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  9. ~ZoSo~

    ~ZoSo~ Semi-Pro

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    His wimby punditry on bbc is something to look forward to. Very dry funny guy. He also called serena williams out on what he saw as a faked injury which led her to say that "her career was more "stellar" than his, so he could say what he wants"
     
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  10. MichaelChang

    MichaelChang Hall of Fame

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    Stich suffered a lot from injuries. I saw on TV his ankle injury during a match, when his entire ankle bent like 90%. That looked really scary on TV and I was in big shock, even today I still remember that image. Any other people here remember that incident?

    Stich's most famous shot, as I remember, was his famous backhand overhead/smash. I haven't seen other players do that.
     
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  11. President of Serve/Volley

    President of Serve/Volley Semi-Pro

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    He could win on any surface. He could have been a top 5 player of all time if he wanted it more. I believe he is more talented than Sampras or Federer.
     
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  12. Gorecki

    Gorecki G.O.A.T.

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    Elegance, Power, classic game.. all the shots, but the bad luck and the lack of effort put shortened his career!
     
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  13. Jchurch

    Jchurch Guest

    I like the guy just for his Serena comment at Wimbledon. I do agree. His game sure looks pretty effortless in those clips.
     
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  14. Driver's Seat

    Driver's Seat Banned

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    Terrible underachiever. One of the most gifted players talent wise I have ever seen
     
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  15. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    I've posted a lot about Stich before. #1 reason, he was a big-time Flake. Perhaps not quite of Safin proportions...he TRIED...he just had a bad temper and a tendency to grow frustrated and lose concentration in matches.
     
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  16. JeMar

    JeMar Legend

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    I've only seen 4-5 of his matches. What stands out the most is his sick one-handed inside out backhand. It was just ridiculous.
     
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  17. viduka0101

    viduka0101 Hall of Fame

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    if you replace st in stich with a b you almost get a dirty word
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2009
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  18. Cantankersore

    Cantankersore Semi-Pro

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    Bich? How raunchy.
     
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  19. viduka0101

    viduka0101 Hall of Fame

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    oops, i forgot to write almost
     
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  20. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    I think it's a safe bet that Becker used this alternative nomenclature more than a few times.
     
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  21. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    Put it this way, one of the few (if only one) that Pete feared on the tennis court.
     
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  22. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    I was surprised that Stich was the one Sampras feared the most of all the players he faced. Such a gifted player with a beautiful service motion. John McEnroe won the 1992 Wimbledon Doubles title with Stich.
     
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  23. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    I think because he saw a lot of himself in Stich. Very good all around game and awesome serve. but here is where mental strength/drive divided their career. oh, and Stich did have some injury issues.
     
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  24. mantra33

    mantra33 New User

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    would love to see that match. especially the last set.
     
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  25. mantra33

    mantra33 New User

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    stich still got full hair it seems. whereas sampras....
     
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  26. SirSweetSpot

    SirSweetSpot Banned

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    Legendary underachiever, perhaps had even more squandered talent than Nalbandian, Rios, Jimmy Arias, Ivanisevic, Safin, McEnroe (successful but underachieved immensely), Frank Dancevic (dude come ON ALREADY), Ernests Gulbis...etc. etc. etc.
     
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  27. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Stich always impressed me as a taller, lankier version of Sampras with slightly loopier groundstrokes, and a better touch volley. It seemed like he came out of nowhere to beat Becker at Wimby in 1991. (He beat Courier, Edberg, and Becker easily in the quarters, semis, and finals, losing just one set to Edberg.)

    When he was on, he could serve you off the court and volley you to death.
     
    Last edited: Dec 19, 2009
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  28. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    This is true in many ways, but he didn't have anywhere near the agility of Sampras (though he moved VERY well for a 6'4 man, it'), nor the athleticism in things like leaping ability. He did have greater reach though, and as you mention, great touch...I don't know that it was BETTER than Sampras, but it was, extremely good.

    I think one thing that impressed me the most about Stich's movement is...and you really only appreciate this if you see him in close-up, say an isolation shot....despite being 6'4 (and looking even taller) and being all arms and legs, he could fold that body up like a lawn chair in an instant, and many times, I saw his knees right on the ground to make low volleys. For a man his size, to be able to do it so quickly, shows athleticism, form, and good work ethic!
     
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  29. mental midget

    mental midget Professional

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    i would place stich squarely at the top of that list, after discarding johnny mac (i see your point, but 7 slams takes him out of the discussion imo.)

    i have a hard time putting anyone in front of rios with regards to the god-given ability to just . . . romance . . . the ball, but stich combined that skill, with some serious firepower to boot.
     
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  30. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    What I meant by "better touch volley" was that when I think of the Sampras volley, I think of a "power volley" that is angled hard and fast and is not returned because it is out of play. When I think of a Stich volley, I think of a much softer "stop volley" that dies on the court out of the reach of his opponent, and thus ends the point.

    Both are very effective and end the point but in very different ways. Just MO.
     
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  31. boris becker 1

    boris becker 1 Rookie

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    Becker vs stich 93 wimbledon semi. one of best grass matches ever. becker was too tired and had nothing left vs Sampras.
     
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  32. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    That is true, though I am certain Boris would have lost anyways, note, Sampras had also gone 5 against Agassi! A truly all-time great Wimbledon draw in my opinion.

    The Becker Stich quarter was indeed exciting....and one of the most openly hostile matches I remember. Stich appeared to be swearing at Becker as they walked to their chairs! After the match, Becker went over and put a hand on Stich and tried to say words...but Stich COMPLETELY ignored him.
     
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  33. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    Yes. That's what I thought you meant. I just don't give either an advantage that way...they both could produce great touch volleys..and touch shots for that matter....although, indeed, Stich probably chose to use them more!
     
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  34. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    oh I am sure Pete is a bit envious. Pete had a nice head of hair in his "prime".:)
     
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  35. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    yep. I rememeber always being "surprised" when he would just blow out great players. But looking back, this guy had a great game. very much underachieved.
     
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  36. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    I know what HJ meant by this. If you think about it, Pete was a more power volleyer than Mac or Stich. Stich had "softer" game at the net. Pete, Rafter and Edberg maybe had more powerful volleys at the net, but guys like Mac maybe used the angles a bit more(mostly from serve returns). I think Stich was more like that (not always), but more so than Pete.
     
    Last edited: Dec 20, 2009
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  37. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    True this. It makes sense to me that both Mac and Edberg are the cream of volleyers in the game, but that they had rather different volleying styles.

    Hate to use the analogy, yet I will anyway: "separate but equal."
     
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  38. muddlehead

    muddlehead Rookie

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    stich's serve one of the the sweetest classic serves ever.
     
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  39. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    smoooooth. seemed so effortless.
     
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  40. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Is it just me, or did Goran have an odd service motion?
     
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  41. Kemitak

    Kemitak Semi-Pro

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    Maybe because there wasn't much to it? I always thought it was somehow strange, too, but I think the way he begins nearly square to his opponent and then pitches sideways and really leans into the ball is worth emulating.
     
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  42. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    true. was not prototypical. not something you would teach a young one. its all his own.:)
     
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  43. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    Really the only thing odd about it was his stance. He stared EXTREMELY open and wide in prepartation then swung his front foot back into a closed stance while stepping into a very narrow pinpoint. VERY idiosyncratic.....but didn't really affect anything important. His upper body motion was very sound, and very orthodox...
     
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  44. nfor304

    nfor304 Banned

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    Stich played an ATP doubles match like 5 months ago. Does that mean this thread should be in general pro player discussion :)
     
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  45. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Stich--
    Date of birth 18 October 1968 (age 41)
    Height 1.93 m (6 ft 4 in)
    Weight 80 kg (180 lb)

    Sampras--
    Date of birth 12 August 1971 (age 38 )
    Height 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)
    Weight 77 kg (170 lb)

    Stich does not look heavier than Sampras; I guess it's his height.
     
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  46. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    read what you wrote. that was what we meant. also, I was agreeing with another poster. You just went into it with more detail.

    why attack me??? get lost.
     
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  47. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    "All Sampras is is Karlovic with a better forehand, a better backhand, a better second serve, a better overhead, quicker legs, better eyes, and better volleys, . . . and a little shorter." ~Hoodjem
     
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  48. darthpwner

    darthpwner Banned

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    Azzuri i dont think data was trying to attack you and I agree with his assessment.
     
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  49. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    In the first sentence, I make it explicitly and clear, that I'm simply elaborating on what in particular was odd. An elaboration he apparently agrees with! Then he accuses me of not reading??? Attack? Get lost? lol! What is it with the adolscent histrionics around here lately???
     
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  50. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Azzy has often had a short fuse, but he's a good poster. (Certainly knows his stuff when it comes to Sampras.) Sometimes he does like to "mess" with people. "Clueless" is his favorite word.

    Maybe Elisha has been ignoring him recently. Maybe the Christmas season has stressed him out lately.?
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2009
    #50

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