COMMENTS ON COMMENTATORS

Annecone is good--but too much jargon--if you're a beginner you would have no idea what the hell he's talking about half the time. If you're a teaching pro he'll supply you with all the latest tennis razzle-dazzle jargon to impress the 3.0/3.5's at your clinics--like "green light ball". If you're trying to educate KISS (keep it simple stupid)--but, maybe he's not there to educate--maybe he's trying to impress Martina and Brett Haber--don't get me wrong I like Anne--about 50% of the time.
 

Johnny505

Semi-Pro
Wimbledon used the service of Becker in the past before he went bankrupt. His commentary was as dull as watching paint dry. Spoke a few words here and there sounded as if he was half asleep.
Cash was another one painful to listen to, can't string a complete sentence together without hesitating and disrupting himself when speaking.
Good job Wim decided not to use them again.
 

Bumbaliceps

Semi-Pro
French commentators on Eurosport are terrible. They basically only talk about how the big 3 has improved their game over the years, that they push each other to keep going etc etc, you know the song. I'm very disappointed that former players like Cédric Pioline, Arnaud Clément, Paul-Henri Mathieu, Arnaud Di Pasquale who seem like very likeable persons can care so little about actually talking tennis.

Whether the big 3 are playing or not, it doesn't matter, it is just constant praise. It becomes more and more cringe. Marion Bartoli is the one who actually makes the efforts to go into analysis but she can't stop talking for a second and your brain starts to burn. The best commentator is Jean-Paul Loth, a former player who is 80 YEARS OLD.

I can't stand Robbie Koenig :-D
 
Koening is extremely partial to Nadal but he keeps it subtle. But his combo with Jason Goddall(Spelling?) that used to be the norm on ATP masters during early 2010s was my favorite.

Courier is good when he isn't in his "Look how witty I am" mode.


Boris Becker is both irritating and fascinating.
But at times has outstanding gut feeling.
When Djokovic went 2-1 up in WB, final I thought the match was done. But Boris was like "Nah not yet", way before Fed got the M.P , Boris picked him.


I absolutely despise ESPN team. Way too commercial, way too in your face. Not to mention they just have to bring one of Federer ,Nadal or esp Serena into someone else's match and keep talking about them if not that they will talk of anything but the actual Match. Mac is bearable but too much of an smartass.
 
The BEST non player Tennis Commentator by far in the past twenty years is someone most of you would never have heard of .... his name is Bruce McAvaney !

The BEST player Tennis Commentator by a country mile is Lleyton Hewitt. Jim Courier is a distant second. After that possibly Koenig.
 

King No1e

G.O.A.T.
The ESPN dream team of Chris Fowler, Darren Cahill, and Patrick McEnroe is/was my favorite as a group. Fowler filling the announcer role well while Cahill and Mac do the expert analysis in between points. Especially loved Darren Cahill's pre-match checkboards.
 

Blade0324

Hall of Fame
Anyone other than Chris Everett, Pam Shriver, or Tracy Austin. They all have no clue and talk about too many things that are irrelevant to the match and in most cases even the game of tennis. Taylor Dent has done some for US Open qualifying and was very good.
 

Mainad

Bionic Poster
Wimbledon used the service of Becker in the past before he went bankrupt. His commentary was as dull as watching paint dry. Spoke a few words here and there sounded as if he was half asleep.
Cash was another one painful to listen to, can't string a complete sentence together without hesitating and disrupting himself when speaking.
Good job Wim decided not to use them again.
Becker commentates at Wimbledon every year (his financial woes have got nothing to do with it). I couldn't disagree more about his commentating style. Always been lively and interesting to my ear.
 

Open Stance

Semi-Pro
Anyone other than Chris Everett, Pam Shriver, or Tracy Austin. They all have no clue and talk about too many things that are irrelevant to the match and in most cases even the game of tennis. Taylor Dent has done some for US Open qualifying and was very good.
Totally agree on Evert and Austin. 'Chrissy' is very boring and Austin does not understand a thing about modern tennis.

I'm ok with most of the ESPN announcers but do they really need 22 of them? I mean, you have Fowler, the two McEnroes, Cahill, Gilbert, Evert, Shriver, Fernandez, Drysdale, Goodall, Stubbs, Mattik-Sands, Rinaldi, McKendry, the guy who sued ESPN for wrongful termination after saying Venus was using guerrilla tactics and I'm sure I'm missing somebody. Then you have Mouratoglou in the studio half the time lobbying for his next gig after Serena dumps him. Their payroll and travel expenses must be obscene (well, at least before we entered the corona world we live in now).
 

20fed04

New User
Robbie Koenig seriously needs to stop saying "OH STOP IT".
I feel like muting the TV when Mary Carillo is on, same for most of the ESPN team, save for the McEnroes.

I remember hearing Roddick's commentary on some match and enjoyed it, same for Arthur Ashe.
90s tennis had pretty good commentary, I'm probably thinking of Cliff Drysdale but can't be bothered to check.
 

fed1

Professional
The only negative to watching the return of tennis in the US today is having to listen to the ultimate Fan Boy Brett Haber on Tennis Channel.
 

sureshs

Bionic Poster
What I don't like is the grip Chris Evert and her pal Pam Shriver have on Tennis Channel and ESPN. Evert is the editor or something of Tennis mag and tennis.com and has a huge influence on the sport. But she has to realize that people are no longer interested in what she, Navratilova and Pam Shriver did back in the day. The game has completely changed and people are interested in what is happening today. Casting everything in the light of yesteryear with heavy doses of fake humility and obsequious praise from the likes of Davenport is boring to hear.

And frankly, this is show business, and however bad it sounds, we need young good-looking people on the show as anchors to keep the audience entertained and grow the sport.

Watch for r2473 to reply saying it is sexist
 

Hitman

G.O.A.T.
Mark Petchy is the GOAT for me. Robbie is a little too hyped up, and honestly, I have heard the one liners now a dozen times each. It's OK to want to try to comment as if you are commentating for a Pro Wrestling match, but it doesn't quite work using the same material over and over.
 

MeatTornado

G.O.A.T.
The ESPN dream team of Chris Fowler, Darren Cahill, and Patrick McEnroe is/was my favorite as a group. Fowler filling the announcer role well while Cahill and Mac do the expert analysis in between points. Especially loved Darren Cahill's pre-match checkboards.
I don't love or hate Fowler or PMac. But any broadcast with Cahill instantly gets me to pay more attention. Love listening to that guy, just pure analysis without any overt bias or hyperbole trying to "sell" the match the or the moment. Just a coach that wants to tell you what he's seeing out there.
 

Hitman

G.O.A.T.
I don't love or hate Fowler or PMac. But any broadcast with Cahill instantly gets me to pay more attention. Love listening to that guy, just pure analysis without any overt bias or hyperbole trying to "sell" the match the or the moment. Just a coach that wants to tell you what he's seeing out there.
Yes, Cahill is very good. I remember watching him give detail analysis to why Wawrinka's return of serve can be a weakness. He opens up a lot of different dimensions in his analysis and I do enjoy listening to him.
 

King No1e

G.O.A.T.
Mark Petchy is the GOAT for me. Robbie is a little too hyped up, and honestly, I have heard the one liners now a dozen times each. It's OK to want to try to comment as if you are commentating for a Pro Wrestling match, but it doesn't quite work using the same material over and over.
Koenig was cool for about a year, in like 2012 and 13. Then it got annoying real fast.
 

Hitman

G.O.A.T.
Koenig was cool for about a year, in like 2012 and 13. Then it got annoying real fast.
You gotta keep the new material coming in, otherwise nobody is going to sit through the same movie over and over again for years on end.
 

King No1e

G.O.A.T.
You gotta keep the new material coming in, otherwise nobody is going to sit through the same movie over and over again for years on end.
I don't know why for some reason Mark Petchey's "Can't get any better than that!" catchphrase never gets old while Koenig's one-liners do. I guess it just doesn't sound contrived, and it's his genuine reaction.
 

Hitman

G.O.A.T.
I don't know why for some reason Mark Petchey's "Can't get any better than that!" catchphrase never gets old while Koenig's one-liners do. I guess it just doesn't sound contrived, and it's his genuine reaction.
I just get the sense that Robbie is trying too hard at times. I don't get that with Petchy.
 

Mainad

Bionic Poster
I don't know why for some reason Mark Petchey's "Can't get any better than that!" catchphrase never gets old while Koenig's one-liners do. I guess it just doesn't sound contrived, and it's his genuine reaction.
Petchey doesn't get as over-the-top excited as Koenig often does. That may be the difference. The nearest thing to excitement I ever witnessed from Petchey was when Murray won his maiden Slam at the US Open (Petchey was his first professional coach) but even that pales into comparison with some of Robbie's more routine performances. :cool:
 

ChrisRF

Hall of Fame
On German Eurosport we have an absolutely horrible chief commentator who is always more interested in gossip stories than in the actual match. And he presents his nonsense extremely detailed like "The father of this or that player has a hotel in his home town with 73 rooms." Or he talks about any random person which is just shown in audience. And the score doesn’t matter one bit then. He also does it at 4-4 in the deciding set of a Slam final if there is an opportunity.

Since 2-3 years or so he often commentates together with Boris Becker, and I thought it would become a bit better. But no, Becker willingly takes part in that kind of talking as well. He often talks about soccer, movie stars or prominent women in the stands he finds pretty.

Another problem is that they are often wrong when talking about tennis history, memories or such things. Regularly talking about nonsense and making multiple mistakes when being on topic is a bad combination. And I have to say this as a fan of Boris as a player.
 

King No1e

G.O.A.T.
Petchey doesn't get as over-the-top excited as Koenig often does. That may be the difference. The nearest thing to excitement I ever witnessed from Petchey was when Murray won his maiden Slam at the US Open (Petchey was his first professional coach) but even that pales into comparison with some of Robbie's more routine performances. :cool:
I agree with this. I guess the difference is that when commentating epic moments Koenig sounds overexcited while Petchey sounds reverent.
 

King No1e

G.O.A.T.
On German Eurosport we have an absolutely horrible chief commentator who is always more interested in gossip stories than in the actual match. And he presents his nonsense extremely detailed like "The father of this or that player has a hotel in his home town with 73 rooms." Or he talks about any random person which is just shown in audience. And the score doesn’t matter one bit then. He also does it at 4-4 in the deciding set of a Slam final if there is an opportunity.

Since 2-3 years or so he often commentates together with Boris Becker, and I thought it would become a bit better. But no, Becker willingly takes part in that kind of talking as well. He often talks about soccer, movie stars or prominent women in the stands he finds pretty.

Another problem is that they are often wrong when talking about tennis history, memories or such things. Regularly talking about nonsense and making multiple mistakes when being on topic is a bad combination. And I have to say this as a fan of Boris as a player.
Sounds like the Chris Bradnam/Mats Wilander duo.
 
D

Deleted member 771911

Guest
Frew McMillan is the benchmark for me. I love listening to Virginia Wade, too. I enjoy Marion Bartoli and Mary Pierce, but I liked them a lot as players so some bias there. Really enjoy John Millman.
 
Taylor Townsend is refreshingly good as a newcomer to announcing--she sounds like a pro at it. She has good insights having played on the tour recently. She has a good voice and a nicely cadenced clear delivery.

Mark Petchey : good information but low monotone colorless delivery--hard to understand--makes me want to turn on closed captioning to decipher what he is saying.
 
The BEST non player Tennis Commentator by far in the past twenty years is someone most of you would never have heard of .... his name is Bruce McAvaney !

The BEST player Tennis Commentator by a country mile is Lleyton Hewitt. Jim Courier is a distant second. After that possibly Koenig.
Bruce McAvaney is the goat.
 

Rattler

Hall of Fame
Taylor Townsend is refreshingly good as a newcomer to announcing--she sounds like a pro at it. She has good insights having played on the tour recently. She has a good voice and a nicely cadenced clear delivery.
I was gonna post about Taylor. She does a great job, and has taken to commentary like a fish to water. Also Taylor is one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. I’d run into her at tournaments from when she was a Junior, on the USTA circuit, at WTA events, and at the US Open…she always said hello and ask me how I was, how my wife was doing all with the biggest smile.

Alexander Stephenson is a cringe-fest
 
Vania King is doing a great job!--strong clear voice, good insights.
She's a straight shooter too giving her honest opinion on that tape being used by many today ( she's wearing it in her photo), that it does virtually nothing except to remind you that you have a boo-boo. I bought some just for grins to see what the big deal is--I don't think it has any active ingredients in it that could penetrate the skin to heal anything. It is useful as an adhesive tape to hold other bandages on and is easily removable, so it can serve a useful purpose, I am using it as a general adhesive tape to protect areas that are getting banged a lot.

Vania grew up in Sampras country SoCal, Long Beach area and her brother who played for Duke practiced with Pete. She was #50 in singles and #3 in the world in doubles--she's been there, knows her stuff having recently retired from the tour offering fresh insights.
 

tex123

Professional
Becker is the worst.

I'm ok with Courier & J Mcenroe but other American commentators are annoying and they talk a LOT.

Wilander and Annabel - neutral.

Petchey is very good with technical analysis. So is Henman. I like Koenig's one liners. Rusedski is good as well.

Hantuchova is hot. She can talk but she does not need to :).
 

Bartelby

Bionic Poster
Fred Stolle had a comforting and warm voice. Becker has a rather too unobtrusive a voice. McEnroe has a great character voice, but doesn't say much interesting.

Then there are those guerrilla commentators with a flair for the ambiguity of language.
 

ibbi

Legend
Annecone is good--but too much jargon--if you're a beginner you would have no idea what the hell he's talking about half the time. If you're a teaching pro he'll supply you with all the latest tennis razzle-dazzle jargon to impress the 3.0/3.5's at your clinics--like "green light ball". If you're trying to educate KISS (keep it simple stupid)--but, maybe he's not there to educate--maybe he's trying to impress Martina and Brett Haber--don't get me wrong I like Anne--about 50% of the time.
Yes, people like that require a partner to ground them. It's why I love the pairing of Petchey and Courier that we're occasionally lucky enough to get in this country. Petch is a total stat head, loves to go really in depth with all the detailed stuff, and then Courier anchors him to reality, forces him to contextualize the stats and what they mean in the real world rather than just letting him reel off numbers.
 

ark_28

Legend
Big fan of Mark Petchey’s self depreciating style.

The other commentator said once a few years ago “Djokovic is 43-1 this year we can never relate to these numbers”

Petch replied “ I can but the other way around.”
 

WYK

Hall of Fame
Koenig needs to move to soccer matches. I have to mute him because tennis has nothing to do with mongooses or amphetamines(well, OK, I suspect a lot of pros sneak in the latter on 'bathroom breaks', but still...).
I would actually prefer Will Ferrell to him:

 
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