I was thinking of posting something about this, but I would have taken several paragraphs to get across a point that you made in just one. I agree with you that that H2H takes on greater significance when, to use your words, there is no structured tour or a widely accepted computer ranking. That was the case with the computer ranking in the 70s; and the schedule was hardly standardized, with various players playing different tours, and no mandatory tournaments. Today everything is more or less ideal: all the top players attend the Slams and the Masters Series, and the computer ranking is widely accepted. If a player misses a top event, he does it knowing full well that it is a top event featuring all the top players. In today's environment it seems less necessary to go by H2H results. You can safely total up the titles and assume that all the players, when they got their titles, were playing under the same conditions. They all played the same tour, with the top players generally present in the same places. But in an environment in which players didn't regularly meet each other, H2H had more significance. Think about what it was like in the early 20th century, when players on different continents rarely crossed the oceans. Everyone played what might be called "local" tournaments. They were certainly playing different "tours" then. How would you make comparisons then, without any common ground? In that sort of environment, when a top player did make the effort to cross the ocean and play the top player of another continent, it was a major event (no pun intended). That's why I think some fans today look back at the weight assigned to H2H in certain years like '76 and '77, and their reaction is more or less, "What? Are you serious? Just add up the titles, it's that simple." But I think tennis writers and other observers back then looked at things somewhat differently than we do. They knew the chaos that was going on, and I don't think they simply counted up titles and left it at that (they certainly didn't just count up Slams the way we do). Back then a player could choose tournaments that didn't necessarily have as many top players in attendance as did the tournaments chosen by another player. For example in '77 Vilas played about 150 matches, far more than Borg. A natural assumption would be that they played in equal conditions and that Vilas racked up many more wins over Top Ten players than Borg did. But when you actually count up the Top Ten "scalps" as we did in the other thread, Borg comes out with 15 victories over Top Ten players, Vilas only 13, in standard tournaments (Vilas gets two more if Davis Cup is included). And Borg met Top Ten players nearly as many times as Vilas did, despite playing far less. Additionally, Vilas' victories over Top 25 players are comprised heavily of wins over players ranked 11-25, when compared to Borg. All of that is evidence that Vilas' draws were weaker than Borg's. And that has to be taken into account to some degree, though naturally we won't all agree on how much importance to place on that issue (or other issues, like surface). Absolutely it has been tapering off, I think at least some of us in this thread seem to agree that that has been taking place in recent decades. Probably because the tour has been getting more standardized. There seems to be less need to look at draws, or to check things like victories over Top Ten players. That last stat, of course, is a H2H stat. This is something I want to clarify: when I say that H2H was important in the mid-70s, I don't mean exclusively those handful of matches between Borg and Connors, or between Borg and Vilas. It's the H2H against the whole field that ultimately has to be taken into account. Of course, the meetings between the top 2 or 3 players were the most important H2H meetings (think of those heavyweight battles between Borg and Connors). But H2H encompasses more than that, which is why I think it's so hard to leave it all in the next room and not even look at it unless the other numbers are tied. And you and I were both counting up wins over Top Ten, Top 25 players, in that other thread. You suggested H2H should be set aside and brought in only if needed; and you may have been doing that with the Borg-Vilas meetings; but neither of us was really doing that with the H2H against the overall field. I think we agreed it was important. Someone wrote an article in '78 (there was no byline so I don't know the author's name) with an interesting statement. He said in tennis the secret to ranking is all about who can beat whom, not about who earns the most money. And the article names Borg as top player, citing his 16-3 record against the Top Ten in 1977. (You and I both had Borg at 15-3; probably they were counting an extra, non-sanctioned event). At any rate, it wasn't just the 3 matches against Vilas that people were looking at.