Match Stats/Report - Wilander vs McEnroe, Australian Open semi-final, 1983

Waspsting

Hall of Fame
Mats Wilander beat John McEnroe 4-6, 6-3, 6-4, 6-3 in the Australian Open semi-final, 1983 on grass

Wilander would go onto win the title, beating Ivan Lendl in the final. McEnroe was the reigning Wimbledon champion and playing this event for the first time

Wilander won 127 points, McEnroe 113

McEnroe serve-volleyed off all first serves and most seconds, Wilander off all but 2 first serves and very rarely off seconds

Serve Stats
Wilander...
- 1st serve percentage (53/110) 48%
- 1st serve points won (34/53) 64%
- 2nd serve points won (35/57) 61%
- Aces 2
- Double Faults 4
- Unreturned Serve Percentage (29/110) 26%

McEnroe...
- 1st serve percentage (63/130) 48%
- 1st serve points won (42/63) 67%
- 2nd serve points won (30/67) 45%
- Aces 9, Service Winners 1
- Double Faults 10
- Unreturned Serve Percentage (39/130) 30%

Serve Patterns
Wilander served...
- to FH 17%
- to BH 79%
- to Body 4%

McEnroe served...
- to FH 34%
- to BH 58%
- to Body 8%

Return Stats
Wilander made...
- 81 (28 FH, 53 BH), including 3 runaround FHs & 1 return-approach
- 9 Winners (2 FH, 7 BH)
- 29 Errors, comprising...
- 3 Unforced (1 FH, 2 BH)
- 26 Forced (12 FH, 14 BH), including 1 runaround FH & 1 runaround BH
- Return Rate (81/120) 68%

McEnroe made...
- 77 (20 FH, 57 BH), including 5 runaround FHs & 18 return-approaches
- 6 Winners (2 FH, 4 BH)
- 27 Errors, comprising...
- 16 Unforced (1 FH, 15 BH), including 1 runaround FH & 8 return-approach attempts
- 11 Forced (3 FH, 8 BH)
- Return Rate (77/106) 73%

Break Points
Wilander 7/15 (9 games)
McEnroe 4/7 (6 games)

Winners (including returns, excluding serves)
Wilander 37 (10 FH, 17 BH, 5 FHV, 4 BHV, 1 OH)
McEnroe 33 (8 FH, 7 BH, 7 FHV, 8 BHV, 2 OH, 1 BHOH)

Wilander had 10 from serve-volley points
- 7 first 'volleys' (2 FHV, 2 BHV, 1 OH, 2 FH at net)... the OH was on the bounce
- 3 second volleys (3 FHV)... 1 FHV can reasonably be called an OH

- 1 from 1 return-approach point, a BHV

- 25 passes - 9 returns (2 FH, 7 BH) & 16 regular (6 FH, 10 BH)
- FH returns - 2 dtl
- BH returns - 4 dtl, 1 inside-out, 1 inside-in and 1 inside-out/lob (unintentional lob, that McEnroe left)
- regular FHs - 2 cc, 1 dtl, 1 dtl/inside-out, 1 longline and 1 lob
- regular BHs - 2 cc, 4 dtl (1 at net), 1 inside-out, 2 lobs and 1 running-down-drop-shot cc at net

McEnroe had 13 from serve-volley points
- 8 first volleys (2 FHV, 6 BHV)
- 5 second volleys (2 FHV, 1 BHV, 1 OH, 1 BHOH)

- 5 from return-approach points (3 FHV, 1 BHV, 1 OH)

- 14 passes - 6 returns (2 FH, 4 BH) & 8 regular (5 FH, 3 BH)
- FH returns - 2 inside-out
- BH returns - 3 dtl and 1 inside-out
- regular FHs - 1 cc, 3 inside-out (1 net chord pop over) and 1 lob
- regular BHs - 2 dtl and 1 lob

- non-pass FH - 1 inside-out

Errors (excluding serves and returns)
Wilander 37
- 6 Unforced (1 FH, 1 FHV, 2 BHV, 2 OH)
- 31 Forced (10 FH, 17 BH, 1 FHV, 1 FH1/2V, 2 BHV)... with 1 BH running-down-drop-shot at net
- Unforced Error Forcefulness Index 55

McEnroe 51
- 24 Unforced (1 FH, 4 BH, 7 FHV, 12 BHV)... with 1 BH at net
- 27 Forced (7 FH, 11 BH, 1 FHV, 5 BHV, 3 BH1/2V)
- Unforced Error Forcefulness Index 54.6

(Note 1: All 1/2 volleys refer to such shots played at net. 1/2 volleys played from other parts of the court are included within relevant groundstroke numbers)

(Note 2: the Unforced Error Forcefulness Index is an indicator of how aggressive the average UE was. The numbers presented are keyed on 4 categories - 20 defensive, 40 neutral, 50 attacking and 60 winner attempt)

Net Points & Serve-Volley
Wilander was...
- 43/68 (63%) at net, including...
- 34/55 (62%) serve-volleying, comprising...
- 30/49 (61%) off 1st serve and...
- 4/6 (67%) off 2nd serve
---
- 1/1 return-approaching

McEnroe was...
- 69/125 (55%) at net, including...
- 51/98 (52%) serve-volleying, comprising...
- 32/53 (60%) off 1st serve and...
- 19/45 (42%) off 2nd serve
---
- 13/18 (72%) return-approaching
- 0/2 forced back

Match Report
Collected and sober showing from Wilander, particularly serve-volleying, while the standout of it is his BH play in all areas (return, pass, even baseline play). McEnroe plays terribly in just about all ways, more so than his winning opponent plays well

At start, it looks like Mac will serve-volley off all serves, Mats off all first serves and not off seconds and Mac will return-approach off 2nd returns regularly

With that tune playing, Mac dominates the first set, despite strong play from Mats. He wins his first serve volley points as he’s used to counting on, hits a spate of return winners to get a large chunk of Mats’ first serve-volley points and finally, return-approaches against Mats’ second serve to dominate those points

Mats doesn’t roll over. He does well on return too. But not being able to do much against first serves and having his second serve exposed outweighs that sizably, and he loses the set

Its hard to see how Mats can turn it around, without things changing. Mac might be counted on to stop hitting first return winners, but one wouldn’t count on anything else changing (unless Mats chooses to 2nd serve-volley, which given how his firsts have been treated doesn’t sound like a great idea). On top of having returned and passed well himself, his prospective silver lining is Mac hasn’t been too secure on the volley and missed a few routine ones

Things do change. Almost unbelievably so

- Mac’s volleying gets worse and he’s apt to miss anything that’s not outright easy (and a few of those too). Its bad enough that he starts staying back on second serves fairly often. Solid firm returning by Mats to help things along, but mostly Mac messing up volleys
- Mac double faults frequently
- Mac starts missing 2nd returns he’s trying to chip-charge regularly
- Mac can’t make headway with his 1st return in the same way

With the exception of the last point, none of the above were to be counted on and come as a surprise

McEnroe’s Showing
This is the worst match I’ve seen from John McEnroe. There isn’t a single area of the game that he isn’t bad

- Serve - 48% first serves in - not good, but if the serves are of good quality and he volleys well, not necessarily a problem. The serves aren’t of a particularly good quality (and he doesn’t volley well either). Just before the end, he sends down 3 great serves (an ace, and error drawing serves to either wing), all well wide and having Wilander lunge to no avail

Seeing 3 in a row like that brings home how rarely he’s sent down such serves all match. Generally, these are almost Mac’s staple. For almost all match, even his first serves have been not hard to reach

And there’s 10 double faults. He has 9 aces (+ a service winner). How often does Mac have more doubles than aces?

- Return - this is poor too, though not uniformly. Starts the match superbly - guiding first returns for passing winners and chip-charging regularly on seconds to great success. This goes on all of first set, where he’s dominant

Thereafter, he can’t get strong returns off against first serves. Not a big problem. Mats’ first serve isn’t strong and its possible to dominate it, but counting on doing so would be very ambitious. More realisitically, be happy for dominating it for a set and get by for rest of match. That’s what Mac does

It’s the second return that goes haywire. Early on, he’d chip-charged with typical ease and won a big lot of points. After that, he keeps missing the return. There’s nothing different and there’s nothing particularly strong about Mats’ 2nd serve. Mac, simply, goes off on his favourite chip-charge return

He eventually settles on just passive push-slicing returns back and playing from the baseline

- ‘Volleys’ (including half-volleys and groundstrokes at net). 18 winners. 20 UEs

That’s horrendous. He misses routine volleys almost all match. Firm-ish returns slightly under the net are as likely as not to get an error out of him as not. And what he makes, he places where Mats can reach them without trouble. This is no volleying into corners display

Its not uncommon for even a Mac calibre volleyer (all 2 or 3 of them) to have days where they’re missing a good lot of volleys, but even on those days, the ones they make tend to be deadly. For Mac himself, famous wins such as ‘80 Wimbledon and ‘81 US open finals fit this bill

Not here. He misses a lot and he doesn’t do much with the ones he makes

Few good volleys sprinkled in there. 1 in particular stands out as the most feathered touch volley one can imagine. With racquet point upward, he light as can strokes the ball to drop it dead on the spot for a winner

- baseline play. Strangely enough, this is the area he does best in (which isn’t saying much, given the low bar set by him in other areas). And he’s still outdone by Mats (as would be expected) in it

Ground UEs - Mats a measly 1, Mac 4
Rallying to net - Mats 8/12 at 67%, Mac 5/9 at 56%

‘nuff said

Mac’s movements are a bit down too. He’s wearing strapping just under his right knee all match and fiddles about with it and shows minor signs of discomfort through the match around that area

Basic Stats, Odd Stats
3 odd stats come to mind as worth mentioning. Before getting to them, lets look at the most basic stats

1st serve in - both 48%
1st serve won - Mats 64%, Mac 67%
2nd serve won - Mats 61%, Mac 45%

The in-count (one imagines) would be a huge win for Mac. He has by far the more damaging first serve, so to get as many in as Mats’ average shot is all in Mac’s favour

1st serves won is a relative win for Mats. Again, with Mac having so much the better serve and thought to be the much better volleyer, one would expect Mac to have a huge advantage here. A slim one is a win for Mats
 

Waspsting

Hall of Fame
1st serve points are all virtually all serve-volleys (Mats stays back on 2, and wins both points)

Mac’s got big lead in unreturnables - Mac 10, Mats 2

Actual 1st serve-volleying winning rate - Mac 60%, Mats 61%

Big, big win for Mats. His efficiency on the volley is on show. His quality returning has a significant hand in keeping Mac’s winning rate down (though Mac’s poor volleying is bigger factor)

Match is won on 2nd serve points and Mats’ huge advantage in it. Which brings us to odd stats

Odd Stats 1 & 2 - Mats’ 2nd serve points winning spree and shifting serving direction

For the last 2 sets, winning rates for the 4 serves on show
- Mats’ 2nd - 23/29 or 79%
- Mats’ 1st - 16/23 or 70%
- Mac’s 1st - 19/31 or 61%
- Mac’s 2nd - 14/31 or 45%

Why so high? One reason is his picking up on Mac making a hash of returns and feeding him every chance of continuing to do so. After Mac misses a few chip-charge returns, Mats scarcely serves anywhere else (including with 1st serves)

From early in 3rd set, Mats directs 23 straight serves to BH. Then 3/4 to FH. And then finishes match on an unbroken run of 14 straight to the BH

That’s a run of 38/41 serves or 93% directed to Mac’s BH

Prior to that, its 71% directed that way

There’s no particular reason to serve so high as 71% to Mac’s BH - he’s an even by wings returner - to begin with, though there’s no particular reason not to. Its close enough to default serving patterns for most players

93% directed that way though, is no accident. He’s noticed Mac having a bad BH returning day and made the most of it

All 16 Mac return UEs are to serves directed to BH. And 8/11 FEs for that matter

Odd Stat 3 - Mac’s 2nd serve points breakdown, specifically his doing so much better not serve-volleying

Mac’s 2nd serve points comprise
- 10 double faults
- serve-volleying 19/45 or 42%
- not serve-volleying 11/12 or 92%

Why doing so well not serve-volleying? The first non- serve-volley is for fun (as in, he’s well ahead in first set and just stays back for no particular reason), and he hits a third ball FH inside-out winner

He takes to staying back fairly regularly later on, as he’s losing a lot of points serve-volleying. And, wins all but one so doing

Wins them in all ways. Mats misses 3 returns. Baseline rallies. Mac coming to net and winning. Mats coming to net and losing

The numbers are clear in indicating Mac should have stayed back more and maybe Mats is on to something with all the staying back

Practically, it doesn’t sound right. Mats does as well as he does largely due to Mac making a hash of returning. Mac’s numbers though has no ready explanation. Its unlikely he’d continue to win such a proportion of points if it became a habitual thing, but facts are facts. He’s 92% staying back and 42% serve-volleying behind second serves
 

Waspsting

Hall of Fame
Wilander’s Showing
A good, solid showing from the winner Wilander

He serve-volleys off virtually all 1st serves (stays back on 2, both of which he wins) and stays back off virtually all 2nds (serve-volleys 6 times, winning 4)

Ordinary serve. Neither powerful, nor well placed. Just 2 aces and 26% unreturneds would be on low side with 100% serve-volleying. He’s only serve-volleying about 50% off serves - and his freebies include the huge lot of Mac 2nd return errors

16/29 unreturneds are Mac return UEs. That’s very much due to Mac messing up, not the quality of the serve

Volleys efficiently. Good finishing to dispatchable balls with 7/10 serve-volley winners being first ‘volleys’. To the routine, net high-ish volley, he doesn’t miss much (just 2 volley UEs. He also has 2 OHs) but doesn’t put them in corners either. Reasonable looks for Mac on the pass after, but Mac can’t make many

Gist of Mats’ serve games is doing the needful. Mac’s poor returning of second serves help (and Mats helps him help it by feeding the faltering BH return), but there’s no blackmark degree of fault with the returning against first serves. Mats does what he needs to win bulk of ‘em with contained volleying

Its in return games where Mats shines brightest, particularly with the BH

Just looking at his 2 returns -

- returns made - FH 28, BH 53
- return FEs - FH 12, BH 14
- return winners - FH 2, BH 7

… speaks to superiority of the BH return. Lot lower proportion of errors, about double the proportion of winners by the BH. If Mats was wise to direct traffic to Mac’s BH return, Mac’s blundered by doing the same. He directs 58% serves to BH , 34% to FH

Even the return errors don’t miss by much. Good lot hit the very top of the tape or land just out

On the pass in play, about equally good off each side
- FH - 6 pass winners, 10 FEs
- BH - 10 winners, 16 FEs

Mats targets Mac’s BHV. He returns BH inside-out from deuce court and trys to go dtl on the other side. Not a change on the fly like his serve directions but seemingly a ploy from the start, though he ups it as match wears on

And BHV, both reputedly and actually, Mac’s less strong volley, is the one to falter with 12/19 UEs and for that matter, 8/9 FEs. Mats even lobs BH longline or inside-out’ish so if Mac’s able to smash it, he’ll have to do so with BHOH.

And to wrap up, 0 BH UEs. Not a big deal (he has just 1 of the FH), but can’t do better than that


Match Progression
Great set of tennis to open the match. There are 5 breaks, 6 games with break points in them and 1 other deuce game

Mac breaks to love to start, starting with 2 chip-charge returns, following with another net point to reach 0-40. On break point, he strikes a BH inside-out return pass winner

Mats breaks right back. Double fault and missing a regulation FHV opens the window, and Mats crashes through it by forcing a wide BH1/2V error and on break point, smacking a body serve for a BH dtl return pass winner

More chip-charges (3), return pass winners (2) and a couple of passing winners (2) get Mac 2 more breaks to lead 5-2. A running, touch BH lob winner is particularly good

He’s broken first time of serving for the set though in a long, 14 point game. Plenty of good passing from Mats in it, but some help from Mac too, who leaves a return that lands in for a winner, misses a couple easy volleys, double faults. On Mats’ second break point, a not good first volley allows Mats up to net, where he’s able to win the point

Mats’ is under the gun to hold too though, courtesy of more chip-charges and another return-pass winner but manages, with Mac missing a few returns

2 passing winners (FH dtl/inside-out and BH lob) put Mac down 0-30 as he serves for set a second time. He has to save a break point with a service winner before closing out.

Fine set of tennis. 4/6 Mac’s return winners are in the set. Mats meanwhile as returned and passed every bit as well as Mac. But Mats’ second serve being chip-charged so regularly looks like a big problem for him going forward

Terrible volleying from Mac in the second set and he starts missing his chip-charge returns. Regulation, slightly under net volleys give him a lot of trouble - just in making them, let alone making them well. Solid, firm returning from Mats, usually towards the BHV.

Mac’s broken to go down 0-2. Couple of volleying UEs from him and when he stays back off a second serve, Mats comes in to volley home a winner. Some other excellent plays from Mats - a BH inside-in return pass winner and a BH inside-out pass one (after Mac volleys the ball right back to him) and on his second break point, a wide FH return low to Mac at feet level forces BHV error

Its game after that Mac’s woes with the return-approach starts. He misses all 3 attempts as Mats holds for 3-0. And then break again for 4-0, with Mac opening and closing with double faults, and throwing in an easy as can be FHV miss on penulimate point. The 7 points in between feature plenty of strong passes from Mats too

Mac hits right back with a break.Chip-charge works again and he wins 2/2 with the play, including the most delicate of FHV winners. Looks like last return game was a blip

Turns out not to be. This is the last break Mac has all match and he can only reach break point twice more. Mats nurses his one break advantage to winning the set.

Third set is continuation. Still bad volleying from Mac, still solid returning from Mats. Missing still more chip-charges, Mac drops the play and slices BH returns back passively (and misses some of those too), content to play quiet baseline rallies. Mats wins vast bulk of these points

The break comes in game 3. Mac missing a putaway easy high BHV starts it, but Mats forcefully wins the next 3 points. Mac has a chance to break back on back of 2 chip-charge returns and a pass winner after forcing a first 1/2volley, but he also misses 2 second serve returns (1 chip-charge attempt, and on break point, a runaround FH) plus a routine first return Mats stayed back on. Mats holds with a FH at net winner serve-volleying

Forecourt errors keeps Mac on his toes to hold for rest of set. Mats is more comfortable and holds serves to the end

Fourth set is pretty good, with Mats being that much better. Mac threatens in game 4 with good passes and a bolt from the blue power BH cc in a baseline rally. Mats holds, finishing by passing Mac FH dtl

And then breaks. From 40-30, Mac double faults and misses 2 easy volleys. He’d double faulted earlier in the game too. He survives another hairy service game, finally unleashing with 3 great first serves as he’d failed to do all match, to hold

He’s less lucky time after, as Mats breaks to 15 to end it - the only Mats break without some help from Mac in it. 3 passing winners and a low BHV error account for the points

Summing up, a solid showing from Wilander, who serve-volleys efficiently behind an ordinary serve and its in return games that he’s at his best with the BH starring. Consistent, firm returns that he controls to the tune of targetting McEnroe’s BHV, with perfectly placed ones that go through for winners liberally sprinkled in and some excellent follow-up passing make him a fairly regular threat on return

He’s aided in all ways by his opponent, who plays badly. McEnroe misses lots of first serves and doesn’t do too much with the ones he makes, misses lots of volleys and doesn’t do much with the ones he makes, double faults plenty and makes a hash of returning Wilander’s harmless second serve after a bright start where he takes it to the cleaners

A good showing from the Wilander, a bad one from McEnroe, more the latter than the former

Stats for the final between Wilander and Ivan Lendl - Match Stats/Report - Wilander vs Lendl, Australian Open final, 1983 | Talk Tennis (tennis-warehouse.com)
 

buscemi

Hall of Fame
Thanks for the report! Really interesting that McEnroe played so poorly here. I wonder what role this match had in McEnroe having such an incredible 1984. Did it light a fire under him?

He loses this match in December 1983, then wins WTF and goes undefeated all the way to the French Open final.
 

jrepac

Hall of Fame
1983 was very much up and down year for Mac.....he managed to win W, perhaps lucky that Connors lost early (as he was the fave)....Mac was then favored at the USO and he lost early to Scanlon...I was surprised he lost to Mats on grass. Don't believe I've seen this match...maybe...I know I saw the final and was very impressed. Mats a bit under-rated for sure. Not flashy, highly competent.
 

WCT

Professional
Always learn something new from you, Wasp. You are so critical of Mac's volley here that I may have to check this out. He do seem to recall that he was battling some kind of injury here. I remember being very surprised at the result. I did not see Wilander beating him on grass.
 

paolo2143

Professional
i cant imagine mcenroe losing to wilander on grass esp in '83 with his max200G o_O
THe grass courts at Aussie open were completely different from the slick, fast & low bouncing Wimbledon court's.

Players like Vilas and Wilander who could barely get by 4th round of Wimbledon won 5 titles between them. Borg & Connors would have cleaned up between 76-81 i think.
 

buscemi

Hall of Fame
THe grass courts at Aussie open were completely different from the slick, fast & low bouncing Wimbledon court's.

Players like Vilas and Wilander who could barely get by 4th round of Wimbledon won 5 titles between them. Borg & Connors would have cleaned up between 76-81 i think.
I still think this is a bit overblown. In twenty years during the Open Era of the AO on grass, 16 winners fully make sense based on how good the winner was on grass and the draw they faced. That leaves the 4 years when Vilas/Wilander won. Vilas beat pretty poor fields to win his AOs in 1978/1979, with the best player he beat being Roche, who he also beat at Wimbledon in 1976. When Vilas faced a solid grass court player in Tanner in 1977, he lost in straight sets.

Turning to Wilander, he won in 1983/1984, beating McEnroe and Edberg among others. But that was baby Edberg, who was coming off his second straight second round loss at Wimbledon. The next year, in the 1985 AO final, Edberg would beat Wilander pretty easily.

So, the grass at the AO was a bit more neutral than the grass at Wimbledon, but I still think it favored S&V players.
 

paolo2143

Professional
I am not saying it favoured baseliners but it certainly took away quite a bit from S&V players, as well as giving baseliners a much better chance.

As i said Borg would have likely eaten up all the opposition between 76-80 and possibly even 81 as well. Yes he payed 2 epic matches with McEnroe in 80 and 81 at Wimbledon (1-1). However, at the Aussie open he would almost certainly have won both encounters due to the big difference in grass courts.
 

buscemi

Hall of Fame
I am not saying it favoured baseliners but it certainly took away quite a bit from S&V players, as well as giving baseliners a much better chance.

As i said Borg would have likely eaten up all the opposition between 76-80 and possibly even 81 as well. Yes he payed 2 epic matches with McEnroe in 80 and 81 at Wimbledon (1-1). However, at the Aussie open he would almost certainly have won both encounters due to the big difference in grass courts.
I think Connors would have fared better against Borg at the AO than at Wimbledon, due to the lower bounce at Wimbledon being kryptonite to Jimbo's forehand. We also have pretty good proof of concept of Connors being good at the AO, winning once and making the finals the two times he played in 1974/1975. OTOH, all we have is baby Borg winning 6-7, 6-3, 6-1 against Thies Röpcke, getting a walkover, and losing to Phil Dent, 6-4, 6-1, 6-2 in 1974.
 

WCT

Professional
What do Borg's results mean? What had he done on grass by early 1974? I don't take his one result there as much of an indicator on how 1979 Borg would have done.
He was 17 years old the only time he played there,

As I said in another thread about this topic, I don't care if you classify them as baseliners, players won by coming to the net. That's how Vilas won, how Wilander won. Maybe not classic textbook s/v on both serves tennis, but Connors and Borg won Wimbledon without doing that. You came to the net a bunch, though. For the most part, anyway.

This isn't me disputing that there may well have been a difference in the grass. Vilas' improved results can be attributed to the fields he competed against. However, by the time Wilander won in 83 the fields were a lot better. And he never had close to the success at Wimbledon as he had in Australia.

I'm just saying it was still a grass court. It's not like playing on hard courts or clay. And you didn't win by playing predominately from the baseline. Newcombe beat Connors in 75. Tanner beat Vilas in straight sets in 77. That said, I don't think Wilander every had a Wimbledon win that matched beating Mcenroe here. Then he beat Curren the next year. So, I don't dispute the argument that he never had near the success at Wimbledon. Even if he won by coming in , the Australian grass helped his results.
 

Waspsting

Hall of Fame
i cant imagine mcenroe losing to wilander on grass esp in '83 with his max200G o_O

Always learn something new from you, Wasp. You are so critical of Mac's volley here that I may have to check this out. He do seem to recall that he was battling some kind of injury here. I remember being very surprised at the result. I did not see Wilander beating him on grass.
First set is an example of how I'd expect things to go between them on grass

Mac serve-volley all the time, Wilander off first serves only
Mac free to chip-charge Wilander's second serve - and doing so

That doesn't sound good from Wilander's point of view

Best case scenario I'd say would be he keeps Mac's second serve-volleying winning rate down (which he's most capable of, he's a great returner) and he has a run of making the pass his second is chip-charged

But the latter isn't likely to last indefinately. And I'd back Mac to win more first serve return points than Wilander, given his much better serve (and volley)

That's how I would have seen prospects

THe way it plays out in that first set is both players are particularly good in their counter-serve-volleying returning, with Mac having edge because he's facing the weaker serve, and his chip-charges doing the work

re: possiblity of Mac carrying an injury - his right leg is taped just under the knee and he shows mild signs of discomfort from it and has it changed at one point. Still, when a guy has reached the semi-final, I don't like to attribute a bad result to injury. If he can get to the semis, he can't be too badly hurt

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regarding questions of difference between Aus grass and Wimby grass - its not hard to see that Wimby is usually faster. Baseline rallies at Wimby invariably involve balls between shin and knee height. Much more comfy hip height in Aus

Volleys fly through at Wimby usually. At Aus, not as much

In terms of results that need explaining - why was Boris Becker not successful at Aus?

Quarter final, second round and 4th round showings from 84-87
 
First set is an example of how I'd expect things to go between them on grass

Mac serve-volley all the time, Wilander off first serves only
Mac free to chip-charge Wilander's second serve - and doing so

That doesn't sound good from Wilander's point of view

Best case scenario I'd say would be he keeps Mac's second serve-volleying winning rate down (which he's most capable of, he's a great returner) and he has a run of making the pass his second is chip-charged

But the latter isn't likely to last indefinately. And I'd back Mac to win more first serve return points than Wilander, given his much better serve (and volley)

That's how I would have seen prospects

THe way it plays out in that first set is both players are particularly good in their counter-serve-volleying returning, with Mac having edge because he's facing the weaker serve, and his chip-charges doing the work

re: possiblity of Mac carrying an injury - his right leg is taped just under the knee and he shows mild signs of discomfort from it and has it changed at one point. Still, when a guy has reached the semi-final, I don't like to attribute a bad result to injury. If he can get to the semis, he can't be too badly hurt

-------------

regarding questions of difference between Aus grass and Wimby grass - its not hard to see that Wimby is usually faster. Baseline rallies at Wimby invariably involve balls between shin and knee height. Much more comfy hip height in Aus

Volleys fly through at Wimby usually. At Aus, not as much

In terms of results that need explaining - why was Boris Becker not successful at Aus?

Quarter final, second round and 4th round showings from 84-87
How would you rate the Queens Club bounce height?
 

Waspsting

Hall of Fame
How would you rate the Queens Club bounce height?

About the same as Wimby.

I haven't noticed anything categorically different from it and Wimby, but I don't have anywhere near as strong a reference point for it

The odd match here and there, from odd years - '82, '83, '90, '96, maybe a couple others
At Wimby, I have a few matches every year to go on
 

NedStark

Professional
About the same as Wimby.

I haven't noticed anything categorically different from it and Wimby, but I don't have anywhere near as strong a reference point for it

The odd match here and there, from odd years - '82, '83, '90, '96, maybe a couple others
At Wimby, I have a few matches every year to go on
Yet, there are quite a lot of claims about Queens grass having truer bounce and playing more like hardcourt, mostly about the 1990s period.
 
That said, I don't think Wilander every had a Wimbledon win that matched beating Mcenroe here.

I can't believe you could overlook his come-from-behind five-set triumph in 1986 against grass court übermensch Andrew Castle, who was in the form of his life at the time.

gd98tplwvle81.jpg
 

Waspsting

Hall of Fame
Yet, there are quite a lot of claims about Queens grass having truer bounce and playing more like hardcourt, mostly about the 1990s period.

1990 final
Lendl Unreturned serve percentage (27/47) 57%

'94 final
Martin Unreturned Serve Percentage (36/77) 47%
Sampras Unreturned Serve Percentage (47/84) 56%

'95 final
Sampras Unreturned Serve Percentage (46/68) 68%
Forget Unreturned Serve Percentage (40/71) 56%

That's not cherry picked. I have just 2 other matches from the period
 
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