Originally Posted by Mustard
I know, but they still weren't majors. I don't know why some people can't see the difference between majors and big events, and that in those days, they weren't always the same thing per se. When they said "Lendl hasn't won the big ones", they were talking about the Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon and US Open, particularly the latter three.
Something similar was said about Vilas not winning the big ones. When he won the French, a lot of people said he had the monkey off his back. But not everyone. When he won the USO, this was in the Associated Press:
Guillermo Vilas finally has won a big one....solidifying his claim toward being the No. 1 tennis player in the world.... Although Vilas had captured the French Open title in Paris earlier this summer, he never had won one of the sport’s two premier events – Forest Hills or Wimbledon. But now the stigma of not being able to win the big one has ended – decisively....
I just think that the top tournaments were viewed on a continuum, more than being sharply divided between traditional majors and non-majors.
And if there was ever a time when there was confusion about what a major was, it was the early Open Era.