Originally Posted by Laurie
one more thing - becker said before the match that sampras serves big, but not as big as stich, whom he played in qf...agassi basically said the same before their qf match, comparing sampras to krajicek (agassi beat krajicek round earlier)
Thanks for the interesting stats. Well to me that statement show two things:
2. Even with Sampras' shoulder trouble, he outplayed Agassi for most of the match, winning the 1st two sets 6-2 6-2, and despite Agassi rallying won the 5th set 6-4 after 3 successive breaks. Then he really took care of Becker. So it shows that serving hard is not enough to beat the best players in the world, Sampras backed up his serve with good movement, good net play and good groundstrokes, that's why he won a lot more tournaments than other attacking players with big serves. That is often overlooked because a lot of people can only focus on one thing, his serve, and not acknowledge his other attributes. Not everyone but enough people to cause lots of discussions and arguments on internet forums!
that's it, yes. sampras name has become synonym for the serve, not without the reason, but he had many other qualities. i often borrow my friends my dvds with his matches, and they are usually stunned how well he plays off the ground and how potent his return game is. serve, volley, they expect that. the usual comment is "wow, he plays so much like federer".
i remember even my picture of him was distorted before i started getting lots of his matches, from all parts of his career. for example, i was stunned to see that he doesn't S&V on his 2nd serve almost at all, despite the quallity of it, even on a fast indoor carpets (before he changed style in his last years). also, that he rarely chip&charges, and doesn't really press the net as much as i remembered etc, etc