Does Chang beat Becker in 89 RG final?

dryeagle

New User
Becker was always a difficult matchup for Chang, winning 9 out of 10 sets in there 3 biggest matches - 91 RG QF, 95 ATP F and 96 AUS F. Seems like he was simply overpowered by the likes of Becker, Sampras and Agassi.

Chang on the other hand played a great final against Edberg in 89 RG. He took out Lendl in Round 4 and seemed to matchup well with him throughout his career.

So if Boris had gotten through that 5th set against Stefan in the SF, could Chang have beaten Becker as well?
 
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thrust

Hall of Fame
Becker was always a difficult matchup for Chang, winning 9 out of 10 sets in there 3 biggest matches - 91 RG QF, 95 ATP F and 96 AUS F. Seems like he was simply overpowered by the likes of Becker, Sampras and Agassi.

Chang on the other hand played a great final against Edberg in 89 RG. He took out Lendl in Round 4 and seemed to matchup well with him throughout his career.

So if Boris had gotten through that 5th set against Stefan in the SF, could Chang have beaten Becker as well?
YES!
 
It is hard to say but I think Becker would be less likely to crack mentally than Edberg. Additionaly as you said Becker was always a super nightmarish match up for Chang. Rebound ace was a pretty slow court, and Becker still beat Chang quite easily in the 96 Australian Open final. I honestly thought Chang had a good shot to win before that match, even with Becker's easy win in the 95 YEC final. I actually lean towards Becker winning if that final happened, yes even knowing Becker never won a clay event as a pro.
 
Becker was always a difficult matchup for Chang, winning 9 out of 10 sets in there 3 biggest matches - 91 RG QF, 95 ATP F and 96 AUS F. Seems like he was simply overpowered by the likes of Becker, Sampras and Agassi.

Chang on the other hand played a great final against Edberg in 89 RG. He took out Lendl in Round 4 and seemed to matchup well with him throughout his career.
While the FO match is by far their most famous encounter, Lendl is 5-2 overall, and the two matches he lost were five setters where he let a two-set lead over Chang slip away. Basically, Ivan won the first two sets of every single match they played.

At 8-12 vs Sampras (33%) and 7-15 vs Agassi (32%), MC has a better record against both those guys than Lendl, against whom he won only 29% of the time. Only his H2H against Boris at 1-5 (20%) is more lopsided.

As for your overall question, given that when they met at Roland Garros in the 1991 QF, Becker won in straight sets, so it seems highly plausible.
 

dryeagle

New User
uhhh, are we talking about the Becker who didn't win a single tournament on clay as a pro??
Did Becker play many clay events outside of Masters (Super 9) and RG? He did make finals at Rome, Hamburg and had a couple tough losses at Monte Carlo finals. And made 3 SFs at RG. Not bad for a s&v player in that era that was always looking ahead to Wimbledon during the clay season. I bet he would have won a clay event if he prioritized and played events like Houston year in and out.
 

hoodjem

G.O.A.T.
In what match did Chang cramp up a bunch and serve underhand? Was that the final?
Nope, fourth round against Lendl.
 
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GameSetR

Rookie
Of the Big 4 Americans of the 90s, Becker really struggled against Pete & Dre, but he owned Chang & Courier.
 

fezer

Rookie
OP should be: Does Becker lose a potential RG89 final? I think the outcome depends more on Becker. If Becker plays well He would certainly win. He would overpower Chang. It seems very unlikely to me, that Becker would let an opportunity like that Slip away. Becker was in good shape, so I wouldve put my money in Boris.
And one more thing: I'm pretty sure If Becker wins RG 89 he will NOT win Wimbledon and USOpen!
 

dryeagle

New User
Of the Big 4 Americans of the 90s, Becker really struggled against Pete & Dre, but he owned Chang & Courier.
Between Boris and Pete, thought they were pretty even indoors. Some really good battles between 94-96. Pete was in control in those 3 Wimby matchups.

With Andre, BB dominated early culminating with 89 Davis Cup 5 set win. AA then dominated the next 5 years. But 95 brought the intensity to a head with 2 excellent SFs at Wimby and US resulting in a split. Great matches.
 

BGod

Legend
It's funny as I think for both Edberg & Becker their semifinal gave Chang an edge in endurance along with him being younger of course. So I think Edberg wins the final if he finishes Boris in straights and yes I would take Becker if he beats Edberg in 4. But I think the match going the distance drained both guys so not sure, margins would be tight.
 

bluetrain4

G.O.A.T.
He definitely could have. I mean Edberg went 5 with Chang and their rivalry (12-9 Edberg) is much closer than Becker and Chang (5-1 Becker). Edberg even beat Chang in 4 sets at the 1996 French Open when he was clearly past his prime and Chang was still in his relative prime - he made the AO and USO finals that year.

No clay titles notwithstanding, Becker could have certainly beat Chang in the 1989 FO final, but it's impossible know if he actually would have.

Becker's lack of clay titles is an interesting tidbit about him, especially considering how accomplished he was and that he grew up on the surface. But people make too much of it. He wasn't gonna play a bunch of clay 250s just so he could say he won a clay title. He was good on clay, even very good in some instances, though better on other surfaces.
 

goldengate14

Professional
Becker was always a difficult matchup for Chang, winning 9 out of 10 sets in there 3 biggest matches - 91 RG QF, 95 ATP F and 96 AUS F. Seems like he was simply overpowered by the likes of Becker, Sampras and Agassi.

Chang on the other hand played a great final against Edberg in 89 RG. He took out Lendl in Round 4 and seemed to matchup well with him throughout his career.

So if Boris had gotten through that 5th set against Stefan in the SF, could Chang have beaten Becker as well?
Chang would have beat Boris in 4. He would have nullified the power game Boris tried to play
 

goldengate14

Professional
He definitely could have. I mean Edberg went 5 with Chang and their rivalry (12-9 Edberg) is much closer than Becker and Chang (5-1 Becker). Edberg even beat Chang in 4 sets at the 1996 French Open when he was clearly past his prime and Chang was still in his relative prime - he made the AO and USO finals that year.

No clay titles notwithstanding, Becker could have certainly beat Chang in the 1989 FO final, but it's impossible know if he actually would have.

Becker's lack of clay titles is an interesting tidbit about him, especially considering how accomplished he was and that he grew up on the surface. But people make too much of it. He wasn't gonna play a bunch of clay 250s just so he could say he won a clay title. He was good on clay, even very good in some instances, though better on other surfaces.
The loss Muster in 1995 in monte carlo was a devastatig blow.
 
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