Slow surfaces

FranzS

Rookie
Warn you, this isn't player-related. Please let me know your most objective opinions.
I just want to know why many blame the slow surfaces (not really talking about clay, but more about old vs. new Wimbledon, old vs. new hardcourts).
For an attacking player it's more difficult to hit winners on slow surfaces, so I think he must improve his shotmaking (pace, precision, etc.).
This means better technique and strategy must be developed.
What's bad about it? Is it just because of the death of S&V?
 
Warn you, this isn't player-related. Please let me know your most objective opinions.
I just want to know why many blame the slow surfaces (not really talking about clay, but more about old vs. new Wimbledon, old vs. new hardcourts).
For an attacking player it's more difficult to hit winners on slow surfaces, so I think he must improve his shotmaking (pace, precision, etc.).
This means better technique and strategy must be developed.
What's bad about it? Is it just because of the death of S&V?
Creates a baseline slogfest for the most part, limited incentive to come to net as the player at net is a sitting duck. Have a look at mid-early 2000s US Open footage and then 2020 aus open footage. The play is so much more aggressive and appealing for the viewer back on those quicker courts.
 

FranzS

Rookie
Creates a baseline slogfest for the most part, limited incentive to come to net as the player at net is a sitting duck. Have a look at mid-early 2000s US Open footage and then 2020 aus open footage. The play is so much more aggressive and appealing for the viewer back on those quicker courts.
So, is it basically about the death of S&V and that's all? Not saying it's a minor part of the game as we would like it to be, but are other things bothering the "blamers"?
 
There is NOTHING bad about it. It is a legitimate surface type unlike any other surface type. The hating it gets is because that certain fans 'favorites' aren't benefiting from them. It's a bias.

Having said that, a tour should have a balance of slow and fast and everything in between. Currently there are more slower courts than faster courts so there should be some change in that.
 
So, is it basically about the death of S&V and that's all? Not saying it's a minor part of the game as we would like it to be, but are other things bothering the "blamers"?
IMO, HC should be between grass (fastest surface) and clay (slowest surface). I can recall that many HC tournaments in the last few years haven't achieved a near balance. That's not saying that there should be no variation.
 

PMChambers

Hall of Fame
Poly has changed the game far more than changing a little pace. Though removing carpet & wood took the fast top end out.
 

Yugram

Legend
Creates a baseline slogfest for the most part, limited incentive to come to net as the player at net is a sitting duck. Have a look at mid-early 2000s US Open footage and then 2020 aus open footage. The play is so much more aggressive and appealing for the viewer back on those quicker courts.
I find 2020 AO much more appealing as a viewer. It’s all about the perspective.
 

BeatlesFan

Bionic Poster
There is NOTHING bad about it. It is a legitimate surface type unlike any other surface type. The hating it gets is because that certain fans 'favorites' aren't benefiting from them. It's a bias.
You should have said in your opinion there's nothing bad in it, because you have a bias for Nole (and nothing wrong with that). He thrives on slow courts, so it's understandable. But it works both ways: many of us who prefer fast conditions and fast grass believe there is everything wrong with slow courts because it produces nothing but grind fests with no variety. So when calling out other fans bases for "bias," please make sure you acknowledge your own bias. ;) Slow surfaces sometimes suck for the grinders too. :p

 
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netlets

Semi-Pro
Warn you, this isn't player-related. Please let me know your most objective opinions.
I just want to know why many blame the slow surfaces (not really talking about clay, but more about old vs. new Wimbledon, old vs. new hardcourts).
For an attacking player it's more difficult to hit winners on slow surfaces, so I think he must improve his shotmaking (pace, precision, etc.).
This means better technique and strategy must be developed.
What's bad about it? Is it just because of the death of S&V?
I think it's the poly string and powerful racquets that have hurt tennis. But to answer the question, the reason why all slow surfaces are bad IMO is because you can play the some way now on all surfaces. There used to be an huge advantage to having more of an offensive game and going to net at Wimbledon. You simply could never win the tournament without coming to net often or always. Now you can stay back and win. Also, because the courts are all very slow, the game has become more physical, and in turn is harder on the bodies of the players. That's why there are more injuries. Noone needs to play for 5.5 to 6 hours.
 
You should have said in your opinion there's nothing bad in it, because you have a bias for Nole (and nothing wrong with that). He thrives on slow courts, so it's understandable. But it works both ways: many of us who prefer fast conditions and fast grass believe there is everything wrong with slow courts because it produces nothing but grind fests with no variety. So when calling out other fans bases for "bias," please make sure you acknowledge your own bias. ;) Slow surfaces sometimes suck for the grinders too. :p

Well did you read what I wrote after 'my opinion'? Exactly, you didn't because you wanted to cherry pick that part of my comment which suits your agenda ;). There should be an equal distribution of all surface types no doubt about it.

Talking about variety, how exactly do super fast courts offer variety? 90's courts had become a breeding ground for pure S&V, doesn't that go against the ideals of 'variety'? I believe medium and medium-fast courts allow for a mix of both S&V and Baseline duels, don't you think?

PS: I don't need to be biased about anything, coz Nole is great in all court types! :p
 

NoleFam

Talk Tennis Guru
For as much complaints we hear about slower surfaces, faster surfaces require the lesser amount of skills. As much as I like Venus, she was always exceptional on faster surfaces blowing away the opposition but the minute you put her on a slow court, her technical flaws would be front and center. This is why she fell apart against Suarez Navarro in 2009 AO when she was a big favorite to finally win that Slam. Sampras also was excellent on faster surfaces but when you got him on a slow court, his backhand became more of a liability and he became vulnerable in rallies. So if you are not technically flawness, the slower courts will expose you but they reward those players who are technically close to perfect. You can't rely on your power and first strike as much while hiding your flaws on a slower court, and are forced to rely on guile and point construction.
 
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FranzS

Rookie
For as much complaints we hear about slower surfaces, faster surfaces require the lesser amount of skills. As much as I like Venus, she was always exceptional on faster surfaces blowing away the opposition but the minute you put her on a slow court, her technical flaws would be front and center. This is why she fell apart against Suarez Navarro in 2009 AO when she was a big favorite to finally win that Slam. Sampras also was excellent on faster surfaces but when you got him on a slow court, his backhand became more of a liability and he became vulnerable in rallies. So if you are not technically flawness, the slower courts will expose you but they reward those players who are technically close to perfect. You can't rely on your power and first strike as much while hiding your flaws on a slower court, and are forced to rely on guile and point construction.
That's more or less what I had in my mind when I started the thread.
 

FranzS

Rookie
Talking about variety, how exactly do super fast courts offer variety? 90's courts had become a breeding ground for pure S&V, doesn't that go against the ideals of 'variety'? I believe medium and medium-fast courts allow for a mix of both S&V and Baseline duels, don't you think?
Do you (I mean you, and all of you... damn English!;)) think players could still S&V but they're not confident/gutsy enough to do it?
I mean, I often get the impression that a player who hits a great shot and sends his opponent way of the court, still doesn't come to the net to easily finish off the point (if the opponent can hit the ball back) but often waits at the baseline.
Also, how comes that some players (Nadal and Djokovic come to my mind) often play S&V to win a point when they're in a crucial situation (e.g. facing break point?). That makes S&V look like a more-effective-than-baseline-grinding tool to win points, so why don't they use it more often?
In other words, I think there's still some room for S&V nowadays, but unfortunately it's sort of forgotten.
 

canta_Brian

Professional
If slowing the courts was to combat bigger and bigger serves why did the area outside the service box need to be slowed down?
 

beard

Legend
If you want to be objective what kind of tennis most people want to watch you should look at what current surfaces are... Or you think tournament directors give people something people don't like to watch and so they like to lose money... No, the reason surfaces are slowed down is just because most of people like to watch tennis with more rallies...

If you want to be subjective you can tell that people who live of tennis, and who's job is related to tennis, has no idea what they are doing, and that you know better than them... Do you reality think some tournament wouldn't give extra fast conditions if that is what most people want, and earn load of money?

About more variety... Yes, it's logical there are more faster courts, but problem is which tournament would go against themselves and provide conditions that most people don't like, and make less money...




My personal preference is what modern tennis actually give to us. More rallies which need more tennis skills, tactics, and less serveboting and mostly brainless net approaches... Variety isn't serveboting and volley, variety is what we see in modern tennis.
 
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