Better clay courter: Muster or Kuerten?

40L0VE

Semi-Pro
Guga has 3 FOs to 1 for Muster. Guga also has a 3-0 h2h with 2 wins on clay; Mallorca SF and Roland Garros R32.

Some one will chime in and say the Garros match was 5 sets but looking at the score line of 67(3) 61 63 36 64 it's looks like Guga was more in control of the match. I won't be replying to anyone who objects to this viewpoint.
 

Phoenix1983

G.O.A.T.
I loved them both and it's a tough call because Guga won three RG's to Muster's one RG title. But Muster dominated clay far more than Guga. Thomas won 40 career clay titles, Guga won 20 career titles across all surfaces. I actually would give the nod to Muster as the better clay court player. A beast!
Muster is overrated on clay. He dominated mickey mouse tournaments for a few years and had one big title at RG.

Kuerten on the other hand was a triple champion in Paris, regularly beating fellow clay court champs like Kafelnikov and Ferrero. There's no contest who was greater on clay, for me.
 

DSH

G.O.A.T.
Muster is overrated on clay. He dominated mickey mouse tournaments for a few years and had one big title at RG.

Kuerten on the other hand was a triple champion in Paris, regularly beating fellow clay court champs like Kafelnikov and Ferrero. There's no contest who was greater on clay, for me.
And how can we forget his last Masterclass given to the young and impetuous Swiss named Federer?
8-B
 

Musterrific

Semi-Pro
Guga has 3 FOs to 1 for Muster. Guga also has a 3-0 h2h with 2 wins on clay; Mallorca SF and Roland Garros R32.

Some one will chime in and say the Garros match was 5 sets but looking at the score line of 67(3) 61 63 36 64 it's looks like Guga was more in control of the match. I won't be replying to anyone who objects to this viewpoint.
I wouldn't read much into the h2h. Guga was a major talent on the rise and Muster was past his prime, especially on clay. And their epic '97 FO encounter was a choke job from Muster, who was up 3-0 in the fith set.

EDIT: Shouldn't this thread be in the former pro section?
 

Start da Game

Hall of Fame
definitely guga........muster was known for his famous resilient comeback........guga at his best dominated everyone in sight on clay........
 

Mainad

Bionic Poster
Muster is overrated on clay. He dominated mickey mouse tournaments for a few years and had one big title at RG.
He also won 6 claycourt Masters (3 at MC, 3 at Rome) which is more than any other player prior to the current Big 3.

Kuerten on the other hand was a triple champion in Paris, regularly beating fellow clay court champs like Kafelnikov and Ferrero. There's no contest who was greater on clay, for me.
That obviously makes him the higher achiever although Muster was much more prolific.
 

dahcovixx

Professional
He dominated mickey mouse tournaments
Some consider the French a mickey mouse tournament...

Muster had 625 wins with 44 titles. 14 yrs (including his injury)
Gustavo only had 358 wins and 20 titles. 13yrs

Both reached #1 in the world.

I really liked Kuerten but his career was extremely spotty. He has 3 grand slams and a WTF though.

So the casual fan who only watches a few tournaments (GS's) a year would easily say Gustavo, but people who actually play and watch all the tournaments may side with Thomas.

I agree with the OP, Muster was feared like Nadal on clay.

Consistency vs potential IMO
 

DSH

G.O.A.T.
Kuerten foi muito melhor que o austríaco no torneio mais importante que o tour de saibro tem: o lendário torneio de Roland Garros.
Por isso, "Guga" é o melhor dos dois nessa superfície.
:)
 

BorgTheGOAT

Hall of Fame
agree with the OP, Muster was feared like Nadal on clay.
Ridiculous statements like this is why I see Muster as the most overrated clay courter of all time. His FO record where it counted most is arguably the worst of all FO winners of the 90s. To compare him to nadal in any way is so unbelievably far away from reality it isn’t even funny. He lost to all kind of S&V player who weren’t even good clay courter, so he was definitely not feared the same like Nadal.
 

buscemi

Hall of Fame
Kuerten.

It's tough to get past the fact that, outside of 1995, Muster had one win (against an unranked Agassi) against a great clay court player in 13 appearances at the French Open.
 

BorgTheGOAT

Hall of Fame
Kuerten.

It's tough to get past the fact that, outside of 1995, Muster had one win (against an unranked Agassi) against a great clay court player in 13 appearances at the French Open.
Yes and even Agassi is not really a “great” clay courter and he was in a slump when he lost to Muster. Also important to note that one round later Muster lost to clay legend Rafter which was even before Patrick’s breakthrough and before he even had won one single tournament. This Muster overrating here is really funny. His legacy is mostly built on Mickey Mouse tournaments. Yes I know he also won six masters but let’s face it, masters especially clay masters didn’t have the same value in the 90s. Many top players used to skip them (Agassi, Courier, Sampras), while other clay court specialists saw them more as warm-up tournaments and did not go all out (Gomes, Bruguera). So all in all, winning six masters was not a bad achievement but given his abysmal FO record outside of 95, this is definitely not enough to put Muster into top 5 all time on clay let alone mention him in the same sentence as Nadal.
 

Phoenix1983

G.O.A.T.
Well this is yet another opinion we will have to agree to disagree on. Mine is backed by the ATP though.
They only started saying that to promote the supposed race between the big 3.

You obviously like Masters bring thought of as big titles because this favours a certain Scotsman.
 

bluetrain4

G.O.A.T.
Better and greater aren't necessarily the same thing.

"Better" - given Muster's much more expansive clay resume - a strong argument can be made for him.

"Greater" - I'd lean towards Kuerten - I mean, he has 3 titles at the only clay Slam, the one tournament that speaks to clay prominence vs. only one for Muster.

I recognize, of course, that there are multiple factors that can be considered in assessing each question - "who is better" and "who is greater."
 

Phoenix1983

G.O.A.T.
Take it up with the ATP.



Sigh...whatever floats your boat. Now can you go and harass some other poor sod who posts about things he finds interesting but you do not.
Wasn’t harassing you mate. I was enjoying your No 1 players threads until you got to about the 30th one, lol. Surprised you didn’t get bored posting them tbh.
 

Phoenix1983

G.O.A.T.
There are only 26 and I never get bored posting about the best players in history.
I was obviously exaggerating/being sarcastic when saying 30. It just felt like 30 or more.

Personally, I find some players much more interesting than others, and wouldn't write a thread on every No 1 - would feel like a box ticking exercise, when I could spend my time writing about more interesting things.

:whistle:
 

Slowtwitcher

Hall of Fame
I was obviously exaggerating/being sarcastic when saying 30. It just felt like 30 or more.

Personally, I find some players much more interesting than others, and wouldn't write a thread on every No 1 - would feel like a box ticking exercise, when I could spend my time writing about more interesting things.

:whistle:
Writing about #1 players a lot more interesting than writing about writing about #1 players
 

Mainad

Bionic Poster
I was obviously exaggerating/being sarcastic when saying 30. It just felt like 30 or more.

Personally, I find some players much more interesting than others, and wouldn't write a thread on every No 1 - would feel like a box ticking exercise, when I could spend my time writing about more interesting things.

:whistle:
I guess I could have gathered them all together in one thread but, heyho.

How about you start some threads about things that interest you? Might make a refreshing change from criticising threads that other people are interested in starting. :cool:
 

Phoenix1983

G.O.A.T.
I guess I could have gathered them all together in one thread but, heyho.

How about you start some threads about things that interest you? Might make a refreshing change from criticising threads that other people are interested in starting. :cool:
I have started threads on this forum. I shall start others when I am good and ready.

:whistle:
 

BorgTheGOAT

Hall of Fame
I
Better and greater aren't necessarily the same thing.

"Better" - given Muster's much more expansive clay resume - a strong argument can be made for him.

"Greater" - I'd lean towards Kuerten - I mean, he has 3 titles at the only clay Slam, the one tournament that speaks to clay prominence vs. only one for Muster.

I recognize, of course, that there are multiple factors that can be considered in assessing each question - "who is better" and "who is greater."
agree it is not the same thing but in this case it does not matter since Kuerten is both greater and better. Greater goes without saying there is next two nothing which could make up for two additional FO. But I also cannot see how one can say Muster was “better”. Muster has lost against a lot of very weak clay players at the FO and has very few wins against big names there. Kuerten on the other hand had very tough draws in all his wins and even after hip surgery was good enough to straight set an upcoming Federer close to his peak. Peak level wise it is Kuerten > Muster and it is not close (H2H also favors him). I cannot see any argument supporting that Muster was “better”, building up a resume on Mickey Mouse tournaments does not make you better than a three times FO winner with lots of wins against tough opposition.
 

Slowtwitcher

Hall of Fame
You only got to watch Muster go down to Stich to see he was not "great."

Muster was a very good player, a great personality and a good example of what you can accomplish when you relentlessly pursue your goals.
 

Cashman

Hall of Fame
I think it is a lot closer than the statistics make it look. Muster played in a very strong clay era, and his results need to be viewed in the context of his horrific 1989 car accident.

On the flip side Kuerten was a great player, but I do feel that he benefited greatly from being an early adopter of polyester strings.
 
D

Deleted member 22147

Guest
It's a bit of a stupid argument. Kuerten was done by 25 with that hip injury and he managed to secure 3 French Open titles in that space of time. Who knows how many more he could have won without that happening, but he we would've entered 2002 edition as defending champion and not the shadow player he was.
 
D

Deleted member 22147

Guest
It seems like Muster's whole style, ability and reputation are exacerbated by how he used to groan like he was climaxing on just about every shot. People seem to think he was a big scary monster who hit incredibly hard and thus people feared him.
 

rafa_prestige89

Professional
I loved them both and it's a tough call because Guga won three RG's to Muster's one RG title. But Muster dominated clay far more than Guga. Thomas won 40 career clay titles, Guga won 20 career titles across all surfaces. I actually would give the nod to Muster as the better clay court player. A beast!
How can a clay beast win only one Roland Garros? You gotta be kidding me...
 

rafa_prestige89

Professional
It's a bit of a stupid argument. Kuerten was done by 25 with that hip injury and he managed to secure 3 French Open titles in that space of time. Who knows how many more he could have won without that happening, but he we would've entered 2002 edition as defending champion and not the shadow player he was.
Great point, specially if you consider that the 2002 French Open champion was Albert Costa, a much weaker player than prime Kuerten. I'm pretty sure Kuerten would win at least 2 more French Open (2002 and 2003 or 2004) if he kept his body healthy.
 
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