Stats for 1978 RG final (Borg-Vilas)

krosero

Legend
Borg d. Vilas 6-1, 6-1, 6-3

The match lasted 1 hour 49 minutes.

By my count, there were 133 points. Borg won 84, Vilas 49 (so Borg got 63% of the points). Borg gave up 22 points on serve and won more points on Vilas’ serve than Vilas himself did (38 to 27).

Borg had 0 aces and 1 double.
Vilas had 0 aces and 5 doubles.

The exact winner counts are a problem because the Italian TV coverage isolated on one player at a time during a stretch spanning six points (for example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T4pPc9YesFc).

In that stretch there were only 2 winners, both by Borg: I put them down as a BHV and a BH pass.

The totals:

Borg made 21 clean winners: 9 FH, 7 BH, 2 FHV, 3 BHV.

Vilas made 20 clean winners: 4 FH, 3 BH, 5 FHV, 5 BHV, 3 overheads.

Vilas had more winners from volleys/smashes than from ground strokes, 13 vs. 7 (in the third set alone it was 6 vs. 2).

Borg had 2 BH passes in the first set, 2 FH passes in the second, and 4 more of each in the third. His 8 passing shots in the third set account for all but two of his winners in that set. His 12 passing shots altogether account for a majority of his winners.

If not for Vilas' increasingly frequent trips to the net, neither player would have had a high winner count.

Vilas had only one passing shot, a FH in the first set. He did have a BH lob winner in the next game, though.


I counted the net advances, though it was some time ago, and unfortunately I did not describe exactly what method I used. Nevertheless the picture is clear: Borg coming in less as the match progressed, Vilas more.

Borg came to net 26 times and won 16 (or 62%). Since he won 63% of all the points in the match, what he was doing at net was essentially no more successful than anything else.

Vilas came to net 49 times and won 25 (or 51%). Since Vilas won only 37% of the points overall, he was right to come in.

Borg’s trips to net became less frequent as the match went on, divided by set as follows: 14, 6, 6.

Vilas came to net with increasing frequency. His approaches per set were: 6, 16, 26.

There were only 6 serve-and-volley points in the match, all by Vilas, all following a wide serve in the ad court. He won five of them (but did not make his first attempt until the last game of the second set).

Vilas used his backhand slice to approach at least 13 times (once for a clear winner), while Borg did so at least twice.

Vilas was the only one to return a serve and come in, losing both of his attempts, each on Borg’s second serve. Borg came to net 9 times during Vilas’ service games, Vilas 18 times on Borg’s serve.
 
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hoodjem

G.O.A.T.
Sounds like there was no way (either rallying or at net) Vilas could beat Borg that day.

63% of the points: wow!
 
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krosero

Legend
Additional stats

By my count (again doing a little guesswork on those 6 points where only one side of the court is shown):

Borg made 19 unforced errors: 10 FH, 4 BH, 2 FHV, 1 BHV, 1 OV, 1 DF
Vilas made 51 unforced errors: 9 FH, 31 BH, 4 FHV, 1 BHV, 1 OV, 5 DF

Borg made 10 forced errors: 2 FH, 4 BH, 1 FHV, 3 BHV
Vilas made 12 forced errors: 4 FH, 5 BH, 3 FHV

Borg worked over Vilas’ backhand and really broke it down. His tactic seemed often to pull Vilas wide with crosscourt backhands and then drive a forehand into Vilas’ backhand corner. That forced Vilas into some errors, but he coughed up plenty of unforced errors under the pressure as well.

31 UE and only 3 clean winners from the Vilas BH.
 

krosero

Legend
Some service stats (these did not involve any guesswork on those 6 points in question).

Borg had no aces but he had 5 unreturned serves. Vilas had 3. Neither man had a service winner in my judgment.

Borg made 35 of 68 first serves (51.5%).
Vilas made 44 of 65 first serves (67.7%).

Borg converted 8 of 10 break points, Vilas 2 of 3.

Borg made his first serve on 2 of 3 break points, Vilas on 4 of 10.

Vilas held in 3 of 11 service games; he did not hold serve until the second set but he did hold in his last two service games of the match.

Borg won 25 of 35 points on first serve (71%), and 21 of 33 on second (64%).

Vilas won 18 of 44 points on first serve (41%), and 9 of 21 on second (43%).

And if you set aside Vilas’ 5 double-faults, he won 9 of 16 points on second serve, or 56%. So really if his serve went in he was quite a bit more likely to win on second serve than on first. In fact his rate on second serve is better than even, and you can’t say that about too many of his stats in this match.
 
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krosero

Legend
The New York Times reported that Vilas did not look sharp throughout the tournament, that he lacked punch on his backhand:

Both players favor baseline play, but it was Borg, playing to Vilas’s backhand and hammering the ball with his forehand, who did most of the attacking. The match was marked by long rallies as both players slugged it out from the baselines.

In the second game of the second set, the ball crossed the net 39 times in a single rally. Two points later it crossed the net 86 times. Borg won both rallies.
Bud Collins in The Boston Globe:

The awesome Swede lost 32 games, no sets in seven matches.

“We play much alike, but I do everything a little better than Guillermo,” was Borg’s accurate summary. Vilas hasn’t the variety to bother Borg as Adriano Panatta did, pushing the Italian final to five sets a fortnight ago.

“Go to the net,” muttered spectator Henri Cochet, 76, who had led the parade of champions and won the inaugural title at Roland Garros in 1928. Cochet, Lacoste and Borotra made France supreme as Davis Cup holders between 1927 and 1932. Eventually Vilas took that advice, at the direction of his courtside guru, Ion Tiriac. Although that pepped up the match somewhat, and Vilas’ unaccustomed number of forays (41) were reasonably successful (21 points), the fact remains that Vilas is as happy near the net as a haddock. “I like it when Guillermo comes in,” said Borg, now 17-4 in the rivalry.
 

Mustard

Bionic Poster
Vilas played a lot better than the scoreline suggests. Borg was just a little better in everything, though, which is why Vilas' usual strengths became weaknesses.
 

krosero

Legend
Vilas played a lot better than the scoreline suggests. Borg was just a little better in everything, though, which is why Vilas' usual strengths became weaknesses.
Right, if you just take a quick look at the stats you'd think that Vilas' BH was his weakness. But Vilas had a fine BH. It's just that this was a match of long rallies, and Vilas was usually the first to cough up the error. And since Borg was playing to Vilas' BH (the stroke that is usually attacked in tennis anyway), that's where the error came from.

That's not to say that Vilas could not have done better. It's not as if all of these errors came after long strenous rallies; many came near the start of rallies and were clearly unforced. But it is to say that you have to look at Vilas' BH errors in the context of how the match was played.
 

krosero

Legend
Here are a few stats and observations for some of their other matches -- these were all won by Borg.

1975 French final (6-2, 6-3, 6-4):

Vilas seemed to be missing his first serve often and making unforced errors on his backhand. (Associated Press)
1976 Dallas WCT final (1-6, 6-1, 7-5, 6-1):

Borg won the second set, 6-1, in 20 minutes. The backhand that some observers consider the best in the game failed Vilas, as he made 10 errors on that side, compared to but four for Borg, who put Vilas under pressure by hitting deep to the baseline. (NY Times)
1976 Wimbledon QF (6-3, 6-0, 6-2)

He hit vicious top-spin forehands and subdued his rival with sheer power. Vilas did not help himself by serving 10 double-faults. (St. Petersburg Times)
1980 Pepsi Grand Slam SF (6-2, 6-1):

Borg jerked Vilas around the court with deep, top-spin strokes, setting himself up for unplayable forehand blasts. “I tried to be a little more aggressive than usual, especially when I had a chance to come in on my forehand,” said Borg. Vilas, who had 33 unforced errors, seemed off balance on the slow, green clay, which normally is his favorite surface. He was content to rally defensively from the baseline, waiting for errors that never came. (AP)
The New York Times wrote a bit about their friendship before their '76 final in Dallas:

“When you go on the court,” Borg said today, “you hate everyone. It is the way it has to be.”

“For sure, I hate,” Vilas said. “The friendship will exist after the match. But on the court you must do what you must to beat the man on the other side.”

... They will probably trade topspin ground strokes from the baseline, and the player with the most patience will win....

The difference some tennis followers seem to be speculating is intensity. This is Vilas’s first appearance in the W.C.T. final, while Borg has reached the final in the two years he has played the circuit, losing to Ashe last year and to John Newcombe in 1974.

“I will try so hard to win,” Bork [sic] said, showing a rare public depth of emotion. “I will do everything to win. I have lost here twice, and I want so badly to win. I have not felt like this before, not like this time. I think Guillermo wants badly to win. But I know how badly I want to win.”

They practiced together this afternoon, as they had all week. And they left the court as friends, as they had all week and for the three years they had been practicing together.
 

BTURNER

Legend
there are basically only four was a point can end here. Borg hits a winner. Borg makes an error. Vilas hits a winner. Vilas makes an error. Vilas isn't going to hit many winners on clay vs the fastest man in the sport. and Borg isn't going to make many errors on any surface. That makes for the inevitable. Vilas simply makes the rallies longer before the inevitable than most.
 

krosero

Legend
surprisingly low % for Borg



do you know what his bh error count was in the '77 USO final?
A little surprising considering his high % in the 79-81 finals. But he had low percentages in some matches against Connors, too, because he didn't have to worry about Jimmy taking his second serve and coming in behind it. I think this was similar, except that Borg really wasn't even doing much with the first serve. He knew it would come down to rallying with Vilas and he didn't put any special effort into his serving.

And Vilas didn't, either, for the most part. Very casual serving in large stretches of this match, just start-the-point serving.

It's pretty rare to see a player go a whole set without missing a return, but Borg did it in the first set, Vilas in the second.

I do think Vilas started to do more with his serves at the end when he decided to do some SV.

Don't have Vilas' BH stat for '77.
 
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Stuart S

New User
French Open, NOT the RG!

Just as an aside, folks: the "RG final" (sic) is the FRENCH OPEN, to give it its proper (and pretty obvious) title.

I find it quite amazing how frequently on this site the French Open is referred to as either "The RG" or "Roland Garros".

Roland Garros is the LOCATION of that tournament. That's all. It is not, and never has been, its TITLE.
 

BTURNER

Legend
Just as an aside, folks: the "RG final" (sic) is the FRENCH OPEN, to give it its proper (and pretty obvious) title.

I find it quite amazing how frequently on this site the French Open is referred to as either "The RG" or "Roland Garros".

Roland Garros is the LOCATION of that tournament. That's all. It is not, and never has been, its TITLE.
From Wiki:
" Roland Garros was a French aviator during World War I.

Roland Garros may also refer to:

The French Open, a Grand Slam tennis tournament referred to in French as Les internationaux de France de Roland-Garros or Tournoi de Roland-Garros.
Roland Garros Airport, the airport in Saint-Denis, Réunion
Stade Roland Garros, a tennis stadium in Paris, France..."

I emboldened the relevant part. We use it as a synonym for the entire tournament because it is one!
 

Stuart S

New User
I'm the sort of person who always puts his hand up when he's wrong. And I do that now :oops:

I've checked your source and also others, and the French Open is, indeed, also known as Roland Garros.

Thanks, BTurner, for correcting me.
 

jean pierre

Professional
Friends, Im a 22 years old Vilas fan, and I allways wants opinions and information about him. Anyone have stats, declarations of the players or any kind of information about the semifinal match at te Masters 77? I would like to know if Vilas was fine physically. I found different versions in various newspaper files. Vilas beat Connors in that Masters, playing a great tennis, but then lost to Borg in semifinals. After that, Vilas didn´t play for months. Some persons talked about ak kind of complex of Vilas against Borg, if Vilas was good physically in that match, it means Borg was really difficult to him, because Guillermo was in a great shape in that moment. Anyway I would have liked to see Vilas playing against Borg in 1977 French Open Final or in the "american tour" that year. Who would win? Some things I read about that match and the links:

"Vilas was a bit slower than in his magnificent second round victory over Connors, but Borg was simply flawless"
http://news.google.com/newspapers?n...DAcAAAAIBAJ&sjid=E1gEAAAAIBAJ&pg=6906,2506820

Tremendous accusations of a journalist against Vilas and Borg:
http://news.google.com/newspapers?n...fsrAAAAIBAJ&sjid=98YEAAAAIBAJ&pg=4833,1203058

Interestant description of the match and some declarations of the players:
http://news.google.com/newspapers?n...fsrAAAAIBAJ&sjid=98YEAAAAIBAJ&pg=2903,1366266

I have another question. If ATP had given the number one to Vilas, at least for a month(for example september-october 1977, or at any time that year)You think the rest of his career would have been any different. This affected Guillermo?

And you know what happened in those first months of 1978? Because I read somewhere that he lost in many early rounds, but this does not appear in the ATP site.

Regards to everyone.

I read a lot of times that Vilas had an injury at his wrist during this semi-final against Borg.
About 1977, the ATP ranking was totally absurd, and everyone knows that Vilas was the real world champion this year. But I think it affects a little Vilas. ATP should say today : OK, the system was stupid, and Vilas is the n°1 in 1977. It would be fair.
 

kiki

Banned
Friends, Im a 22 years old Vilas fan, and I allways wants opinions and information about him. Anyone have stats, declarations of the players or any kind of information about the semifinal match at te Masters 77? I would like to know if Vilas was fine physically. I found different versions in various newspaper files. Vilas beat Connors in that Masters, playing a great tennis, but then lost to Borg in semifinals. After that, Vilas didn´t play for months. Some persons talked about ak kind of complex of Vilas against Borg, if Vilas was good physically in that match, it means Borg was really difficult to him, because Guillermo was in a great shape in that moment. Anyway I would have liked to see Vilas playing against Borg in 1977 French Open Final or in the "american tour" that year. Who would win? Some things I read about that match and the links:

"Vilas was a bit slower than in his magnificent second round victory over Connors, but Borg was simply flawless"
http://news.google.com/newspapers?n...DAcAAAAIBAJ&sjid=E1gEAAAAIBAJ&pg=6906,2506820

Tremendous accusations of a journalist against Vilas and Borg:
http://news.google.com/newspapers?n...fsrAAAAIBAJ&sjid=98YEAAAAIBAJ&pg=4833,1203058

Interestant description of the match and some declarations of the players:
http://news.google.com/newspapers?n...fsrAAAAIBAJ&sjid=98YEAAAAIBAJ&pg=2903,1366266

I have another question. If ATP had given the number one to Vilas, at least for a month(for example september-october 1977, or at any time that year)You think the rest of his career would have been any different. This affected Guillermo?

And you know what happened in those first months of 1978? Because I read somewhere that he lost in many early rounds, but this does not appear in the ATP site.

Regards to everyone.
tankings and calculations were part of the Masters history in the 1970´s, allowed by the round robin format, that made players try to win or try to lose according to the next rival they´d have.many words were said about Borg tanking in the 1975 Masters to avoid facing Nastase before the final and the same was talked about that 1977 Masters, Borg wouldn´t want to play Connors before the finals.In 1980,Lendl gave away his match against Connors to avoid playing Borg in the semis.In 1982,Mc Enroe lost on purpose to Teltscher feeling Connors would defeat Tanner and, thus, Mac wouldn´t face Lendl before the finals...but Connors lost to Roscoe in a terrific match ( 7-6,6-7,7-6), so Mac had to face Lendl in the sf...
 

kiki

Banned
Thanks jean pierre, but you think if Vilas was at his 100%, he might have won? I wonder that.

The ATP decided when to update the ranking or what? Because I saw that, for example, in 1974, the ranking was updated much more frequently.

People I need opinions! :)
Vilas never beat Borg on fast indoors: Borg defeated him in the 1976 WCT Finals and destroyed him in the 1979 WCT Richmond tournament, in the finals.he had no chance.

well, Vilas beat Borg in the 1975 Masters but Borg lost that match on purpose, as I said before, to avoid facing Nastase in the sf...he faced Ilie in the finals...and, fortunately, was roundly beaten ( Nastase played with him like a toy in front of local Stockholm fans)
 
Vilas never beat Borg on fast indoors: Borg defeated him in the 1976 WCT Finals and destroyed him in the 1979 WCT Richmond tournament, in the finals.he had no chance.

well, Vilas beat Borg in the 1975 Masters but Borg lost that match on purpose, as I said before, to avoid facing Nastase in the sf...he faced Ilie in the finals...and, fortunately, was roundly beaten ( Nastase played with him like a toy in front of local Stockholm fans)
Interesting story as to Nastase against Borg. That was 19 year old Borg. I bet that motivated Borg big time. Nastase tried some gamesmanship against Borg in that '76 W final, absolutely to no avail. Borg had become the Angelic Assassin in many ways by then. We know what he did in that '76 Wimbledon tourney. Won it without losing a set and beating Nastase in straight sets on grass, though Nastase was supposed to be the superior "grass court player" and Borg was supposed to be this clay courter primarily. He served and volleyed beautifully and showed no nerves. That was at 20 in his W final!
 

kiki

Banned
Nastase and Borg played great matches, they were like a mixture of heat and ice, creative tennis vs machine tennis.Both were getting along very fine; Borg was a really easy going guy and Nastase was a guy that made Borg laugh.
 
Nastase and Borg played great matches, they were like a mixture of heat and ice, creative tennis vs machine tennis.Both were getting along very fine; Borg was a really easy going guy and Nastase was a guy that made Borg laugh.
Completely agree with that Kiki, but on court Borg liked to get down to business and that was Borg's first W final. He came up with a big clutch performance in 1976 there and he was still only 20. Nastase and Connors were good friends too. Of course, later Borg, Gerulaitis, and McEnroe were friends too.
 

kiki

Banned
Completely agree with that Kiki, but on court Borg liked to get down to business and that was Borg's first W final. He came up with a big clutch performance in 1976 there and he was still only 20. Nastase and Connors were good friends too. Of course, later Borg, Gerulaitis, and McEnroe were friends too.
I think Nastase had in Wimbledon, the same menthal problem Borg had at New York.He should have won that great 1972 final vs Smith and he had trounced Borg just a few months before at the Masters...played on Borg´s home soil.It was really amazing that Borg could beat Nastase so easily at their 1976 final.Nastase should have won it, but Borg played with no nerves and a complete self confidence...and a much imporved serve as a result of hiring somebody to help him develop his serve...a certain Ilie Nastase ( so, Nasty has a great % of the success of Borg, unfortunately it turned out being a boomerang agaisnt him)

And for the friendship, yes.Borg was close to Nastase,Panatta,Gerulaitis and pretty good friends with Mc Enroe and, for a few years, Vilas.He also got along fine with other guys like Orantes and Ashe, with whom he trained a lot.
 
Interesting Kiki. Bergelin has spoken about how he and Borg worked on his serve for a week or two before that tourney at Cumberland tennis club (private). He was spending hours just hitting serves and the courts played fast that year due to heat/no rain. He said it had become "pretty good" in his typical understated way. Was Nastase out there too practicing and giving Borg some advice on serve? Fascinating stuff.
 

jean pierre

Professional
Vilas never beat Borg on fast indoors: Borg defeated him in the 1976 WCT Finals and destroyed him in the 1979 WCT Richmond tournament, in the finals.he had no chance.

well, Vilas beat Borg in the 1975 Masters but Borg lost that match on purpose, as I said before, to avoid facing Nastase in the sf...he faced Ilie in the finals...and, fortunately, was roundly beaten ( Nastase played with him like a toy in front of local Stockholm fans)
In 1975, Vilas won 7/5 4/6 6/1. I don't think that Borg lost intentionnaly : Why winning a set in this case ?? It was more simple to loose 6/4 6/1 !!
 

kiki

Banned
Interesting Kiki. Bergelin has spoken about how he and Borg worked on his serve for a week or two before that tourney at Cumberland tennis club (private). He was spending hours just hitting serves and the courts played fast that year due to heat/no rain. He said it had become "pretty good" in his typical understated way. Was Nastase out there too practicing and giving Borg some advice on serve? Fascinating stuff.
french journalist Jean Couvercell, from L´Equipe wrotte a fantastic book called " les cannibales du tennis" that covered 1968-1979 with very amusing chapters for the major players of that period.In Borg´s chapter, he positively says that Borg had looked upon Nastase ( not a big server but a pretty good one) to help him out with his serve.

BTW, any french fan of the 70´s has that book? I lost it many years ago, and it was a great one to read.It also has a very long introduction that summarizes the greatest moments of the 1920´s (Tilden and les Mousquetaires), 30´s (Perry and Budge ), 40´s (Kramer) and 50´s and 60´s till pro era (Gonzales,Trabert,Patty,Drobny,Seixas,Cooper,Hoad,Fraser,Emerson,Santana and Pietrangeli)...a real must for people like us, so found of tennis hsitory and, specifically, the Golden Era ( 1968-1993 )
 

kiki

Banned
Vilas was in great shape in the Masters 1977, so I think maybe he would have won. Vilas also beat Borg in the Canadian Open 1976, in an Outdoor Hard Surface. I read once in Wikipedia this tournament was in clay, but at least the ATP site say it was in Hard. Apparently Vilas felt comfortable there in Canada, he won twice. Vilas won some tournament in hard, so I wonder if he could have gone further in the US Open betwenn 1978 and 1981. Maybe it was a faster and more difficult surface? Vilas also won in Basel 1978 beating McEnroe in the final. Anyone know something about that Borg-Vilas match in Canada?
Not and it would be great to know about.I think, last time that Vilas beat Borg in an official tourney would be the 1975 Masters...in 1980, he also beat the swede at the ATP World team Cup, on clay, at Dusseldorf, but this event, which gathered many top pros, was semiofficial ( at most)
 

kiki

Banned
In 1975, Vilas won 7/5 4/6 6/1. I don't think that Borg lost intentionnaly : Why winning a set in this case ?? It was more simple to loose 6/4 6/1 !!
Well, you can tank in a way that makes it seem like you did your best.If Borg lost so easily to Vilas, then everybody would suspect.Jean Pierre, I like Vilas and I would really like to know that it was a honest match.But I just don´t think so.

Remember many exos in the 70´s and 80´s? I have seen Borg and Mac share one set and play an honest third, and also, because of TV schedule, Mac and Lendl share one set in time for TV to catch up the finals et...and you know how much hate did it go between both of them¡¡¡ but TV - and its money- is bigger than heat...
 

Mustard

Bionic Poster
Vilas was in great shape in the Masters 1977, so I think maybe he would have won. Vilas also beat Borg in the Canadian Open 1976, in an Outdoor Hard Surface. I read once in Wikipedia this tournament was in clay, but at least the ATP site say it was in Hard. Apparently Vilas felt comfortable there in Canada, he won twice. Vilas won some tournament in hard, so I wonder if he could have gone further in the US Open betwenn 1978 and 1981. Maybe it was a faster and more difficult surface? Vilas also won in Basel 1978 beating McEnroe in the final. Anyone know something about that Borg-Vilas match in Canada?
That was in Toronto in 1974 on hardcourt. Vilas beat Borg 7-6, 6-0 in the quarter finals. Vilas didn't drop a set on his way to the title.
 
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