Whats your top 10 of all time right now?

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by 90's Clay, Aug 22, 2012.

  1. forzamilan90

    forzamilan90 Legend

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  2. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Then I guess Budge's GS does not count either.
     
  3. FedericRoma83

    FedericRoma83 Rookie

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    In the 30s amateur fields were a lot stronger than in the 60s.
    After his 1938 Grand Slam Budge went to dominate the Pro circuit.
    After his 1962 Grand Slam Laver was destroyed by both Rosewall (12-33) and Hoad (0-8 ).
     
  4. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    We can also say that in 1938, Budge won the Grand Slam without having to worry about Vines, Perry, Nusslein and Tilden (professional players), as well as von Cramm (his biggest amateur rival, who was jailed by the Nazis).

    The official majors, as designated by the ITF since 1924-1925, are the Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon and US Open. Strength of the draw doesn't change the fact that they have officially been majors since then. The players who showed up and won the tournaments deserve full credit for doing so. Also, those who missed certain majors because of political disputes/bans/strikes etc. shouldn't have it held against them when we look at their career records. For example, Vilas deserves full credit for winning the 1977 French Open, but it shouldn't be held against Borg as a player that he played WTT and made himself ineligible for the 1977 French Open. But Borg's decision still needs to be recognised as his personal decision, a choice that he made. For that reason, Vilas gets full credit for winning the French Open while Borg doesn't lose any credibility as a player for choosing WTT.

    Multi-dimensional, dialectical thinking is required on issues like this. It isn't black and white.
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2013
  5. FedericRoma83

    FedericRoma83 Rookie

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    Surely, but he demonstrated that he was superior to them all in 1939. What I admit is that if he had to face all them, he probably wouldn't have won four Majors in 1938.
    On the other hand, the Pro circuit was soooo badly organized until 1938. That year Vines was on tour and he didn't enter a tournament, the same for Perry (he entered just a weak US Pro were he was the only strong player). Tilden and Nusslein played tournaments where they were the only two top-tier players, never facing Vines or Perry.
    Considering that, I think that the four classic Slam tournaments (all won by Donald Budge) were still the best ones (even if they were missing a lot of names).
    Things changed radically in 1939: since that year, the Pro circuit started to be well organized, and top players started to enter tournaments with regularity. Moreover, for the first time in tennis history, the top-4 players were all Pro (Budge, Perry, Vines, Nusslein). I think that if there's a year were Pro tennis definitely surpassed amateur tennis, it was 1939 (obviously it didn't happen all of sudden, but it was the culmination of a gradual process).



    You're mixing Open Era and pre-Open Era, it doesn't make much sense to me.
    I agree with you on RG 1977, but it wasn't always so easy. We aren't talking only about Borg (it was a personal choice). At Wimbledon 1973 80-85 players over 100 boycotted the event (only one top-10 played): if we have to enstablish who was stronger in 1973 we really can't consider Wimbledon.
    It was still a Major, but only nominally, it doesn't help us to understand who was stronger, because strong players weren't there (except Nastase and Kodes, and Kodes wasn't a top-10 in that moment anyway).
    If we go back to the Pro Era things are even more difficult to understand because there weren't exact parameters. A tournament had a strong field in the year X, but then it disappeared, or changed surface and location the next year. Moreover, some Pro players used to tour.
    To understand who were the strongers from the WWII to 1967 our only possibility is to find the best Pro tournaments year after year and analize them. Not necessarily a Pro Slam was a good tournament (in 1960-61-62 US Pro was just insignificant), on the contrary some tournaments were not Pro Slam but they were Majors "de facto" (i.e. World's Hard Court Pro in Los Angeles, 1945, not a Pro Slam but the only real Major that year).


    We agree. But even if we need a multi-dimensional thinking, there is an indisputable fact: a tournament with only a top-10 player in its field doesn't help us to understand who were the strongest players in that moment, even if nominally it's still a Major. :)
    We had the same identical discussion about a year ago, Mustard. I guess some things never change, ahahah :D
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2013
  6. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne Banned

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    Federico di Roma, I agree. Nevertheless I plead to rank Wimbledon 1973 as a major.
     
  7. abmk

    abmk G.O.A.T.

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    here are some ideas on why it was nowhere *NEAR* a true major :

    13 out of 16 top players not present
    81 players boycotted it in total

    by far worst Wimbledon in the open era.
     
  8. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne Banned

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    Forza, Wood's list is the proof that even a first class player is not inevitably an expert. Omitting Rosewall off the first fifteen but including Emerson shows: This man has not realized too much about tennis.
     
  9. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne Banned

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    Mustard, I fully agree.
     
  10. abmk

    abmk G.O.A.T.

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    agree .... that list is weird ... I don't agree with many of the choices ..
     
  11. FedericRoma83

    FedericRoma83 Rookie

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    It was a Major nominally, but not de facto.
    We are trying to analize tennis history to find the strongest players: to do that, we need to look at the best tournaments.
    How can Wimbledon '73 help us in our investigation?
    How can a victory on a weak field (remember: only a top-10 player) help us to understand which player was stronger?
    To understand who were the best players in 1973 we have to look at US Open, Roland Garros, WCT Finals, Masters.
    Wimbledon was nominally a Major, but it all ends there: no strong players, no interest in our analysis.

    I agree to pick up the Slam tournaments if they have partially depleted fields, because it means that they still have some strong players: add them to the prestige of the title and you have a Major... but when they are totally depleted, they are just useless. They simply can't help us in our research, it doesn't matter what the Grand Prix or the ILTF said...
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2013
  12. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne Banned

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    abmk, I'm very glad you agree with me at least once...
     
  13. treblings

    treblings Hall of Fame

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    Sidney Woods list gives every poster here the chance to say:" my list makes more sense than that of a former Wimbledon champion":)
    unless of course, kiki comes up with a list that includes Kodes in the top 10:)
    i guess Mr Woods made a list of his own personal favourite players, rather than a best-ever list.
     
  14. Flash O'Groove

    Flash O'Groove Hall of Fame

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    Yep, I don't see anybody being happy with this list.
     
  15. FedericRoma83

    FedericRoma83 Rookie

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    I don't give so much credit to any list without Rosewall in the top-5... but if he isn't not even in the top-15, then it's just a joke.
     
  16. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    abmk,

    Oddly enough the list isn't that weird considering the opinions of players at that time and by that I mean during Wood's time. Many thought that Budge was the GOAT. Many thought Jack Kramer was the GOAT. Many thought Bill Tilden was the GOAT. I think Budge was the type of player who give an awesome impression to those who saw him. You add the 1938 Grand Slam and to many he was the GOAT. It's only in hindsight that we examine the record and find it wanting in some areas. Of course Wood have some fairly current players also.

    I think Kramer still has some decent arguments for being the GOAT. Yes the list is odd by some of today's standards by actually not that off.

    Tilden, Kramer, Gonzalez, Budge, Laver have all been called the GOAT and they are in the top five. In 1969 they took a poll of the greatest tennis players up to that time and it was in order Tilden, Budge and Laver for the top three. When I was a kid I used to read stories about the invincible Budge. It was only later that I looked at his record and while it was great I saw he was far from invincible. Tilden however was pretty much invincible.

    The top ten in the poll of 1969 was in order Tilden, Budge, Laver, Gonzalez, Kramer, Perry, Cochet, Lacoste, Hoad, Vines. After that it was Rosewall, R L Doherty, Brookes, Sedgman and Johnston (tied), William Renshaw, Crawford and von Cramm, Segura, Wilding, Emerson in a four way tie.

    Remember a lot of these lists was not only based on accomplishments but on opinion. We know more information now. Players like Rosewall accomplished tremendous things that people did not know about.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2013
  17. Onehandedbackhand

    Onehandedbackhand Professional

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    I don't know if I make Lendl greatest of the 80s. He had an otherworldly four years from 85-89(with the 84 French as the catalyst), but he had quite a few years where people wondered if he'd win a big one. Marc's 80-84 was very strong too, as was Becker from 85-89.

    Pancho DID dominate the 50s, Laver the 60s, and Borg the 70s(although Connors is up there too). The 80s, though, saw an unbelievable amount of players that could just light it up. Mac and Connors(early 80s), Becker and Lendl, Edberg and Wilander...just a fun era of tennis.

    Don't get me wrong, Lendl was a beast. But, IMO, there were too many players that had godly levels of play in that time to make him the best.
     
  18. FedericRoma83

    FedericRoma83 Rookie

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    To me it is an another evidence of his greatness. He was the most winning player in the most competitive era of tennis history: what can we ask more?
    Easily an all-time top-10 player, surely the most underrated one.
     
  19. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne Banned

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    Sorry, pc1, I cannot defend and accept Wood's list. The key player is the omitted Rosewall. I can await from an "expert" that he at least knows a bit about the players' achievements. Even if Wood did not know much about the old pro scene he should at least know that Muscles was the world's No.1 players for years. And even if he ignores that he should have been aware that Rosewall won four majors in open era while Emerson won none.

    I have the impression Sidney took what he had heard from others without caring too much for own valuing.
     
  20. forzamilan90

    forzamilan90 Legend

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    Let me give my thoughts on the link I posted and some quite deep ****. That guy was a young man when Budge was playing. Here's my take on things. I think we all identify with somebody or like somebody a lot in sports growing up and hold a special attachment or preference. Pretty obvious with me who it is, also obvious with Bobby, 90s clay, kiki, etc. Probably these guys played during an era where we had good times, we enjoyed the sports. Sentimental values. I guess that's how that guy views Budge and other very early players. Hell, he was probably hitting puberty while those guys were playing, emotional times no doubt. It's obvious Laver's accomplishments are similar to that of Budge (the slam) except they go above and beyond and then some. I don't agree with it, but it's nice to see his perspective. I know I probably made a crapload of grammar errors, blame iPhone's tiny keyboard for that.
     
  21. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    I'm not defending the list. I just saying the list unfortunately mimics his time. I believe many of the old lists were very poorly done. I doubt if Wood knew about all the information available today. It's not that widely known.
     
  22. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Basically that's what I was writing. We all have great impressions from when we were younger. Wood wrote in his book he felt helpless playing against Budge. I think that meant a lot in his judgment to rank Budge as number one. The thing is that many rank Budge number one like Kramer for example. I don't think he was when you examine the record nor do I think Budge is even close to number one.

    I do have Wood's book and it is interesting reading.
     
  23. Flash O'Groove

    Flash O'Groove Hall of Fame

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    I fully agree. His resume is awesome, while facing so many all-time greats. He is the most underrated all-time top-10 player along Connors.
     
  24. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Lendl won 146 tournaments in his career. He won eight majors and during a five year span in his peak years he won 91% of his matches. That is actually a slightly higher percentage than Federer during Federer's best five year span to put it in perspective. A fantastic player.
     
  25. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne Banned

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    Federic, I still believe that we should also consider the amateur majors.

    Altogether Rosewall won 23 majors and Laver won 19. But it might be interesting if we count also important tournaments that are not majors in the classic sense, events like WCT finals, Wembley pro after 1967, BBC 2 tournament, South Africa, US Pro Hardcourt (won by Rosewall three times), US Pro Indoor (Philadelphia), won by Laver four times, MSG, Dunlop 1970, Wimbledon 1967, Italian Championships, won by Laver in 1962, Los Angeles, 1968 and similary tournaments.

    Then (adding the majors) I come to 34 tournaments won by Rosewall and 37 won by Laver.

    Of course Laver has also the big edge regarding all tournaments (200 to 137).

    Laver also was able to sometimes blow Rosewall off the court but not vice versa. Of course we should consider that Rosewall was rather old then.

    My conclusion: Laver deserves a place in the top tier.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2013
  26. forzamilan90

    forzamilan90 Legend

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    Pc1 who is your favorite great player?
     
  27. FedericRoma83

    FedericRoma83 Rookie

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    No way, I really can't give any credit to a Grand Slam if who realized it the next year has lost 41 matches over 53 against the two top Pros. Between WWII and 1967 the classic Slam tournaments were simply not that good, and they cannot be counted as effective Majors. I think every serious tennis historician should accept that.


    Italian Championships were hardly a great tournament in 1962, with that amateur field. In the Open Era, we can count the other events that you saying only in years with depleted Slams, and we obviously can't surpass the mark of four-Majors per year.
    That means that we need a substitute Major in 1968 (AO was still amateur), two in 1970 (both AO and RG were weak), one in 1972 (weak AO), two in 1973 (both AO and Wimbledon were weak), one from 1974 to 1982 (still a poor AO), one in 1986 (no AO).
    My choices would be Pacific Southwest Open in 1968, WCT Finals in 1972, WCT Finals and the Masters in 1973, WCT Finals in 1974 and 1975, the Masters from 1977 to 1982, and again in 1986.
    1970 and 1976 are more intricated, there were a lot of equally prestigious and strong tournaments in these two seasons, is not easy to choose.
    So there is no way for Laver to surpass Rosewall. The highest margin that Laver can reach is 17 Majors, while Rosewall's lowest is 19. (On my personal count Rosewall is at 20, Laver at 15 - if we take only undisputed Majors Rosewall is still ahead 19 at 14).


    Overall titles are a nice record, but they are not so important, otherwise we should consider Vilas better than Nadal, or McEnroe better than Sampras.


    Not vice versa?
    In 1965, when Laver was considered no. 1, Rosewall (30 at the time) defeated him 64 63 63 at US Pro and 63 62 64 at French Pro.
    In 1966, still during Laver domination, Rosewall (31 at the time) defeated him 63 63 at Madison Square Garden Pro (easily the fourth greatest tournament that year) and 63 62 14-12 at French Pro, having some troubles only in the last set. In 1973 he defeated him 63 62 in Dallas (even though it was only a 3rd place final).
    Those were all key-matches in their rivalry, and I've not taken in consideration the 1963 season because you would say that it was not a top-form Laver (but even Rosewall in 1966 was not at his top-form).

    I'm not saying that Laver is not one of the top-10 players ever, so I can't understand your problem. I'm just saying that if I have to choose a GOAT candidate between him and Rosewall, I'd pick Rosewall.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2013
  28. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne Banned

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    Federic, My goal was not to find substitutes for weak Grand Slam tournaments (although it might be interesting to do so) but to pick those strong tournaments that are a bit below the majors but still very tough events.

    For instance Laver won many important tournaments in 1970 but failed at the majors. Thus I give him a Co. No1 place.

    Rosewall never beat Laver as Rod did to Ken in the 1968 Wembley final and in the 1968 L.A. final.

    Even though I'm glad you admire Rosewall about as far as I do, I cannot accept your opinions on Laver. Both are in the same league.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2013
  29. forzamilan90

    forzamilan90 Legend

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    ^^^Laver's a tier above imo
     
  30. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne Banned

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    Federic, I must smile that you don't say that Laver is not one of the top ten players ever. Shall I be glad about that statement? Otherwise you would be a first class ignorant...

    Please try to avoid any exaggeration about Rosewall's feats and importance. Otherwise you get in danger that other posters don't deal with your opinions but neglect you totally.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2013
  31. FedericRoma83

    FedericRoma83 Rookie

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    And I don't accept yours. My favourite player ever is Ivan Lendl but I wouldn't say he was the GOAT, because numbers are against him. On the contrary, I really can't stand Roger Federer but he was arguably the greatest player of the Open Era.

    I know that numbers aren't everything and that they should be examined, but in that case we have Rosewall ahead in Major victories, strongly ahead in longevity, and ahead in Major head-to-head too.
    Laver wins only on less important parameters such as overall head-to-head (but as you said, you have to count that Rosewall was 4 years older, this is not a little difference in tennis!) and overall titles (a lot of which were little ones).
    Anyway, I agree that Laver can be considered a co-no. 1 player in 1970.
     
  32. FedericRoma83

    FedericRoma83 Rookie

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    The more I talk to you, Bobby, the more you seem to me a Laver's fanatic. Sorry if I'm too rude, just my personal impression.

    How can Rosewall's 19-20 Majors be "exaggerated" in any kind of way? Come on...
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2013
  33. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Federic,

    There is no way BobbyOne is a Laver fanatic. He is just being objective. As he has stated in the past he is a friend of Ken Rosewall's.
     
  34. FedericRoma83

    FedericRoma83 Rookie

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    And the fact that Rosewall as won more Majors than Laver is not objective?
    Am I inventing something?

    I just expressed my opinion, and he came here saying "I don't accept it": who is he to say something like that? Why should my opinion be less good than his?
    I think I have well explained my motivations.
     
  35. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Lots of them. I enjoyed Gonzalez, Laver, Rosewall, Lendl, Agassi but I didn't see Gonzalez until well past his prime. While I didn't care for them while they played in watching the videos I've grown to enjoy watching Borg, Connors and McEnroe.

    Rosewall is someone I admired because of his economical greatness. He never seemed spectacular like Laver or McEnroe could be but he did everything so smoothly efficiently that it was incredible to watch.

    I liked Vilas a lot also. The Public Television here had the summer tour on every week on Sundays and Mondays. It would be on for many hours usually broadcast by Bud Collins and Donald Dell. Vilas always seemed to be on in those days and I grew to like him. He could be boring as watching grass grow but he was an interesting person I thought.

    I wouldn't call these players great but my wife and I loved watching Noah and Leconte, the two French Players.

    Perhaps the player I've enjoyed watching the most in the last 30 years is Mecir.

    Of the top players today I enjoy watching the top four.
     
  36. forzamilan90

    forzamilan90 Legend

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    I'll say this that Tanner fellow had a crazy serve. Looks so bada$$ watching old footage yet the dude still massacres that serve. If more footage was available he'll be somebody I'd watch just for awe's sake
     
  37. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne Banned

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    Hi Federico, Now I really must laugh a lot. BobbyOne a Laver fanatic?? I can tell you that I have got some punishment since July (when I firstly posted) from Laver fanatics (and Federer fanatics) for my ROSEWALL admiration...

    You should be glad that I am contradicting you and not the true Laver fanatics. They can be much "sharper" than I ever could be...

    I just try to be objective towards Rosewall, Laver and all other GOAT candidates.
     
  38. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Wait, this makes no sense according to TMF. He states categorically that tennis is always getting stronger and better over time.

    So amateur tennis in the 60s would necessarily be better than amateur tennis in the 30s.

    Wouldn't it?:wink:
     
  39. FedericRoma83

    FedericRoma83 Rookie

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    Moreover, the fact of picking up the effective Majors of every year is not my personal obsession, it's an old game that all tennis lovers like to do, I remember a lot of people in this forum who tried it (often with very similar results).
    So, can you explain me why if I try it, my opinion "cannot be accepted"? I think it is not a nice thing to say.
     
  40. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne Banned

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    Federic, of course you are entitled to say your opinion. But I also have the right to say that I cannot accept this or that of a poster's statement. People just cannot accept always all what other people say. Not accepting a poster's opinion does not mean to disregard the other person per se.

    Federic, Since we both are Rosewall admirers we should not fight each other but against those who still ignore or belittle Muscles...If all people always accept all what other people say, then we never would have fruitful discussions!
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2013
  41. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Are you a person who only values majors? As I've written in the past if a person does that we may as well only have four tournaments a year.

    The keys in any player's career is not only the overall total accomplishments but the degree of dominance a player has displayed in his or her career.

    Rosewall won may overall majors than Laver. That is pretty much undisputed. But Laver also won far more tournaments than Rosewall, many of them incredibly strong tournaments like the 1971 Tournament of Champions that Laver over over an elite field by winning 13 straight matches without a loss. Laver won the amateur Grand Slam, the Pro Grand Slam and the Open Grand Slam. When a player wins the Grand Slam that displayed an astonishing degree of dominance. Laver won three of them. Rosewall one. I know you decided not to count the amateur Grand Slam but it does count for something in the areas of accomplishments. Laver won 19 majors in 55 attempts. Rosewall won 23 in 69 attempts. So Laver also won a higher percentage of majors.

    Question-If you rank tournaments based on strength of field, how do you rank Laver's feat of winning 13 straight matches without a loss against Roche, Newcombe, Rosewall, Emerson, Okker, Ralston, Roger Taylor, Ashe? Surely this is the strongest field a player has ever had to face to win a tournament. Laver played almost double the usual amount of matches to win a major in this tournament. It was also a best of five in all matches. It was also very prestigious and I'm sure many would want to enter this tournament over majors.

    I have a hunch that BobbyOne has done much writing on tennis in the past and the majority of us have seen his writings and have been influenced by him, including you. So do I rank his opinions very highly? Yes I do. I may not accept all of them but I do take his opinions into account.

    No one is telling you to accept his opinions but I found it amusing that you call him a Laver fanatic when some have called him a fan of Rosewall's.
     
  42. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Don't forget that Laver had also more years as world no. 1.

    I believe that is is a false dichotomy that one cannot admire Laver and Rosewall. I have both in my top-5 OAT.
     
  43. FedericRoma83

    FedericRoma83 Rookie

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    I'm not, in fact I consider Laver a co-no. 1 in 1970 even if he didn't win a Major, and I accept who says that Laver was no. 1 in 1965 even if Rosewall won two of three Majors.

    But you should admit that, if we have to look not only a season, but the entire career, a five Majors margin is pretty huge. Also, Rosewall's longevity is another very strong factor, and their overall head-to-head is very well balanced if you consider that Rosewall was four years old.
    Am I wrong?


    The percentage factor is a distortion in my opinion. Borg percentage is unbeatable because he retired at 25-26. Rosewall percentage in Major tournaments is lowered by his longevity.
    Anyway, Laver's amateur Slam isn't counted by any serious tennis historician as far as I know, because it doesn't show any kind of dominance (in fact he lost 43 out of 51 matches in 1963 against Hoad and Rosewall: how can you call it a dominance?).


    The Tennis Champions Classic 1970 can be counted as a Major without problems, because that year two Slam tournaments were depleted. In 1971 I prefer to count effective Slam (I always do if they are not really weak!) because they all had pretty good fields.


    I don't know him, I can judge only his behaviour in this thread, and I think it was not so good. Anyway, let's leave this behind us, it was not a great accident.
     
  44. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne Banned

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    hoodjem, I just wished that all experts would have Laver and Rosewall among the top five...
     
  45. FedericRoma83

    FedericRoma83 Rookie

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    We agree on this at least.
     
  46. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne Banned

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    Federic, I hope you are not annoyed but I again must contradict: I would say that most serious experts yet respect Laver's first Grand Slam (maybe to a too exaggerated degree). If it was not a great feat, then why have only two men achieved it?
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2013
  47. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne Banned

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    Federic, we most of all agree also that Rosewall is maybe the GOAT. That's not a little thing. Remember that almost all experts don't think so.
     
  48. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    It's a four major margin and you also have to consider the Grand Slams and the differences in total tournaments won. You have to consider Rosewall entered 14 more majors than Laver in their respective career.

    I don't think you should decide what is a major in one year and what is not a major in another year.

    And incidentally while I did not count the total amount of matches but Laver defeated Hoad and Rosewall far more than the amount you wrote in 1963.
     
  49. FedericRoma83

    FedericRoma83 Rookie

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    Because obviously amateaur players had their own level and if you was an amateur it was not easy feat to achieve.
    But that doesn't change a fact: Pros were on an much higher level, so to achieve an amateur Grand Slam doesn't show any kind of domination.

    In fact, he lost 41 matches over 53 he played against Rosewall and Hoad in 1963. You keep ignoring this fact, but numbers speak clearly: 12-33 against Rosewall, 0-8 against Hoad. Is that a dominance?
    What a strange concept of dominance you have...
     
  50. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne Banned

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    Thanks, pc1 for your nice words.
     

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