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-   -   Rosewall and Gonzales Careers Official Thread (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=450379)

forzamilan90 01-09-2013 09:40 AM

Rosewall and Gonzales Careers Official Thread
 
Both have great records, great longevity. Let's analyze their careers and compare them. Also, let's Try not to emphasize other players (a lot of threads get their topics off track). Serious discussion only. I personally want to get educated about these two cause they fly under the radar somewhat and there may be some misconceptions about these guys. Of particular interest to me is which of the two you feel had a greater career.

FedericRoma83 01-09-2013 12:44 PM

Gonzales was a pretty epic character, in the modern era he probably would have been a sort of Lendl. I'm not talking about his playing style obviously (very different from the czech), but he was described by Trabert as a lonesome man, he didn't like to stay with other Pro players.
He probably would have been a "hated one", opposed to yankee and australian super-heroes. :D
I definitely like what I know about him.

forzamilan90 01-09-2013 02:40 PM

I see they both have 15 pro majors, which is the most respectably in that category. I don't know how to separate these two. Rosewall has 8 slams to Gonzales' 2 in addition to the pro majors, so technically Rosewall has more and would lead him to a higher tier. However, from what I've read Gonzales tends to be rated higher by experts. Is that cause he has more time spent as number 1?

FedericRoma83 01-09-2013 02:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by forzamilan90 (Post 7108491)
I see they both have 15 pro majors, which is the most respectably in that category. I don't know how to separate these two. Rosewall has 8 slams to Gonzales' 2 in addition to the pro majors, so technically Rosewall has more and would lead him to a higher tier. However, from what I've read Gonzales tends to be rated higher by experts. Is that cause he has more time spent as number 1?

Pancho also had a positive head-to-head, but I think it was because they had a lot of matches in 1957 (top-form Gonzales defeated a strong but not top-form Rosewall 58-28 ), while they didn't meet each other in 1962-63, when Rosewall was at his absolute peak.
In my opinion Gonzales may have been more dominant on fast courts, but he was slightly less complete than Muscles (Trabert stated that on clay, where his serve was slowed down, he was not one of the strongest).

pc1 01-09-2013 02:57 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by FedericRoma83 (Post 7108510)
Pancho also had a positive head-to-head, but I think it was because they had a lot of matches in 1957 (top-form Gonzales defeated a strong but not top-form Rosewall 58-28 ), while they didn't meet each other in 1962-63, when Rosewall was at his absolute peak.
In my opinion Gonzales may have been more dominant on fast courts, but he was slightly less complete than Muscles (Trabert stated that on clay, where his serve was slowed down, he was not one of the strongest).

The thing that weights heavily in Gonzalez's favor is that in 1960 he played a tour against Rosewall, Segura and Olmedo and won it with an incredible won lost of 49-8. The individual head to head was I believe around 15-4 against Rosewall. Now they probably were playing mostly indoors on canvas which favored Gonzalez but it was still against peak Rosewall. That's a great achievement by Gonzalez. That was obviously for the World Title. Gonzalez was the greatest in history on these head to head tours. These tours can be argued to be toughest and perhaps more important than majors.

forzamilan90 01-09-2013 03:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pc1 (Post 7108528)
The thing that weights heavily in Gonzalez's favor is that in 1960 he played a tour against Rosewall, Segura and Olmedo and won it with an incredible won lost of 49-8. The individual head to head was I believe around 15-4 against Rosewall. Now they probably were playing mostly indoors on canvas which favored Gonzalez but it was still against peak Rosewall. That's a great achievement by Gonzalez. That was obviously for the World Title. Gonzalez was the greatest in history on these head to head tours. These tours can be argued to be toughest and perhaps more important than majors.

Care to elaborate on the bolded? That sure as hell isn't present in today's game. It's like they just play against each other consecutively in a certain time frame or what? I'm not familiar at all.

FedericRoma83 01-09-2013 03:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pc1 (Post 7108528)
The thing that weights heavily in Gonzalez's favor is that in 1960 he played a tour against Rosewall, Segura and Olmedo and won it with an incredible won lost of 49-8. The individual head to head was I believe around 15-4 against Rosewall. Now they probably were playing mostly indoors on canvas which favored Gonzalez but it was still against peak Rosewall. .

True, but in my opinion it was just the start of Rosewall reign (in fact, some consider Gonzales the world no. 1 in 1960), while they had no matches when Rosewall was totally dominant.

No doubt that Gonzales had a greater career achievement than Rosewall on wood indoor. I think he was clearly the GOAT on that surface.

FedericRoma83 01-09-2013 03:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by forzamilan90 (Post 7108544)
It's like they just play against each other consecutively in a certain time frame

Exactly. :)
It was a four men tour: Gonzales, Rosewall, Segura, Olmedo. Gonzales won it 49-8 (15-4 against Rosewall) and then retired. He didn't play at Wembley Pro and French Pro (the two Major tournaments that year), both won by Rosewall (Gonzales wouldn't have won the French anyway in my opinion, as it was played on clay).
That's basically why there's no clear consesus on who was the world no. 1 in 1960.

forzamilan90 01-09-2013 03:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by FedericRoma83 (Post 7108581)
Exactly. :)
It was a four men tour: Gonzales, Rosewall, Segura, Olmedo. Gonzales won it 49-8 (15-4 against Rosewall) and then retired. He didn't play at Wembley Pro and French Pro (the two Major tournaments that year), both won by Rosewall (Gonzales wouldn't have won the French anyway in my opinion, as it was played on clay).
That's basically why there's no clear consesus on who was the world no. 1 in 1960.

what was the time frame for the tour? Did they play each other every day, several times a day?

FedericRoma83 01-09-2013 03:51 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by forzamilan90 (Post 7108633)
what was the time frame for the tour? Did they play each other every day, several times a day?

It depends, it changed from tour to tour. It wasn't their first tour anyway, the first was in 1957, when they played against each other nearly every day (2-set matches, sometimes using a super tie-break in the third) from janaury to may. The 1960 tour was also played in the first half of the year (as most of the tours were).

FedericRoma83 01-09-2013 04:03 PM

a thing that I like to note is that Gonzales was comfortably against Rosewall (at least on wood indoor), but he had a lot of trouble against Hoad.

If you think that Rosewall dominated Hoad, it is clear how much tennis was a strange game even back in the days!

forzamilan90 01-09-2013 04:03 PM

That's pretty cool, yeah there's clearly nothing like that today. I'd love to see it done (on a smaller scale I guess) with the current top 4 doing a tour against each other

forzamilan90 01-09-2013 04:05 PM

Would you say Gonzales is better on clay, than say Rosewall on grass (assuming grass is Rosewall's weakest and clay is Gonzales' strongest surface)?

FedericRoma83 01-09-2013 04:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by forzamilan90 (Post 7108694)
Would you say Gonzales is better on clay, than say Rosewall on grass (assuming grass is Rosewall's weakest and clay is Gonzales' strongest surface)?

Pros played not many tournaments on clay and grass, they played mainly on wood indoor. Anyway, Rosewall was more complete in my opinion: he won some Majors on grass (Australian Open 1971, US Open 1970, US Pro 1963 & 1965), while Gonzales never won a Major on clay (lost two finals at the French Pro, in 1956 against Trabert, in 1961 against Rosewall). Rosewall had not weak surfaces.
But on wood indoor Gonzales was the king, as he had one of the most incredible serves ever (up there with Tilden, Sampras and a few others, as far as I know).

p.s. I'm not saying that Gonzales was weak on clay, he was strong on every surface, but on clay he was not as strong as elsewhere (let's say just like Lendl on grass).

forzamilan90 01-09-2013 04:20 PM

Hmmm the more I learn about Rosewall, the stronger he seems. Definitely underrated.

pc1 01-09-2013 05:08 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by FedericRoma83 (Post 7108724)
Pros played not many tournaments on clay and grass, they played mainly on wood indoor. Anyway, Rosewall was more complete in my opinion: he won some Majors on grass (Australian Open 1971, US Open 1970, US Pro 1963 & 1965), while Gonzales never won a Major on clay (lost two finals at the French Pro, in 1956 against Trabert, in 1961 against Rosewall). Rosewall had not weak surfaces.
But on wood indoor Gonzales was the king, as he had one of the most incredible serves ever (up there with Tilden, Sampras and a few others, as far as I know).

p.s. I'm not saying that Gonzales was weak on clay, he was strong on every surface, but on clay he was not as strong as elsewhere (let's say just like Lendl on grass).

It wasn't played that often on wood indoors. They played also on indoor canvas during the head to head tours. In fact Kramer used to transport an indoor canvas from tournament to tournament to have it laid down on the area where they would play in previous years. Remember I'm talking about the head to head tours also and not just the tournaments. They played often on hard court, clay and grass also. I would say the clay, grass and hard court were actually the most common. Wood of course would be played on occasionally, particularly at Wembley. A great feat of Rosewall was that he would win the French Pro on red clay and the next week play and win Wembley on wood, perhaps the fastest of all surfaces. This is perhaps superior to Borg winning on red clay at the French and a few weeks later winning at Wimbledon on grass.

pc1 01-09-2013 05:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by forzamilan90 (Post 7108735)
Hmmm the more I learn about Rosewall, the stronger he seems. Definitely underrated.

That's why we cannot automatically assume the best players of all time are always playing in the present. People make that assumption all the time. Yes it could be true but I'm always of the opinion that the odds are the perhaps the greatest player of all time already has played regardless of the sport or just about anything to be honest. My logic is that in the history of tennis there have been so many greats that outnumber the very few great players in recent years that the odds favor the past.

forzamilan90,

You are discovering what I enjoy about reading and learning about past players. You often uncover information that surprises you and interests you. Rosewall is a player I often compare to the great former World Chess Champion of the 1920's Jose Capablanca who is considered even to this day perhaps the greatest and most gifted chess player of all time. Capablanca played a crystal clear chess style. It's was smooth elegant and but the moves just didn't seem often spectacular. A sort of a joke comment was made about Capablanca's games in that he played easy obvious moves that anyone could see. And yet when the game ended with another victory for Capablanca they would "How did he do it?!"

Rosewall has super footwork, great anticipation and he was a great mover. He was a terrific volleyer with super groundies. It was maximum efficiency with minimum effort. He didn't always hit the mind boggling shots (he did hit his share however) like Laver did but often he was more effective. Rosewall's movement was so great that he was on balance to hit shots that others, even very quick players would have to rush to hit well.

Here's a video of an old Rosewall against the great Tony Roche in the finals of the 1970 US Open.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lJubuKDN7Fk

forzamilan90 01-09-2013 05:40 PM

Shame footage is extremely limited.

FedericRoma83 01-09-2013 05:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pc1 (Post 7108815)
It wasn't played that often on wood indoors. They played also on indoor canvas during the head to head tours. In fact Kramer used to transport an indoor canvas from tournament to tournament to have it laid down on the area where they would play in previous years. Remember I'm talking about the head to head tours also and not just the tournaments. They played often on hard court, clay and grass also.

I didn't know about canvas, I thought that except where stated otherwise, their indoor matches were all on wood. What's the difference between canvas and wood? Is it like saying hard indoor vs carpet indoor?


Quote:

I would say the clay, grass and hard court were actually the most common.
Not from what I've seen. It depends on nations also. In Australia and Britain they played mainly on grass, but the american tours were mostly indoor, and they were the longest ones.

Frankc 01-09-2013 05:51 PM

Great thread - I am just "discovering" Rosewall myself. Watching his 5 set Wimby win over Smith right now - Muscles was was 39 right?

Pc1 - thanks for the link - just gorgeous, varied stuff...


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