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Old 07-26-2013, 07:34 AM   #3202
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Originally Posted by borg number one View Post
Imagine if tennis was as big in the U.S., Great Britain, and Australia these days as it was back in say 1950-1990. Federer may have fewer majors and the same goes for Nadal. You'd have countries with rich histories producing many tough players, which is somewhat different than brand new countries on the scene having tennis gain a foothold. There are more "tennis playing countries" these days, but there are offsets as well. That's something that many simply gloss over.

With the greater popularity of tennis post 2003 (due largely to the Federer/Nadal rivalry among other things relative to say 1999 or so, why aren't there more great players following behind those guys? Where are all the great players inspired by Nadal in Spain? More juniors and pros from there right? Well, why will there likely not be another Nadal from there anytime soon? How about Switzerland? More players playing there now, inspired by Federer. How many great players will come out of Switzerland in the next decade? More players, more greats, right? No, there are many other factors. More players does not automatically translate into more great players or even greater players. Depth at the top is important and there is something about great players facing off and basically sharpening their skills in the process (a very tough top 10/top 10 even in 1950 or 1960).

Some things are tougher now, but somethings are easier. Just look at these factors: time between points, sitting during changeovers, coaching during matches, challenging calls, tougher travel, central air/heat, sports medicine. What the guys were doing in say 1950 was not easy by ANY stretch of the imagination. In fact, in many ways, they had it significantly harder than the players today.
I don't want to waste too much time in this silly thread, but the bolded portion is simply absurd. Talk of what countries are producing "top players" is irrelevant. Any significant increase in size of a pool of players is going to result in a better field in general along with better top players. This is only an expectation, of course, but it is a very strong one given a big increase. Anyway, read the literature on the subject if you're interested, as I'm not going through it for you. The most ridiculous assumption on this board is that you can tell with your eyes how good top players from an era were compared to other eras when you only saw them play against their respective fields.

Last edited by NadalDramaQueen; 07-26-2013 at 07:36 AM.
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