Stats for 1979 Masters SF (Borg-McEnroe)

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by krosero, Aug 23, 2008.

  1. krosero

    krosero Legend

    Dec 3, 2006
    So this is Borg's highest rate of winners that we've found so far. He had 47 clean winners (in the 33 games shown on my copy), or 1.42 per game. With aces it's a rate of 1.55.

    Borg d. McEnroe 6-7 (5), 6-3, 7-6 (1)

    (I'm missing the first two games of a copy from French TV; somewhere there's probably a full version from CBS).

    Borg was 23, McEnroe almost 21.

    The win put Borg up 4-3 in his rivalry with McEnroe. They had yet to meet in a Slam.

    (This was the 1979 Masters Championship, played in January 1980).

    The next day Borg won his first of two Masters championships. He had lost in the final round to Nastase in 1975 and Connors in 1978.

    Per my count, over the last 33 games:

    Borg won 120 points overall to McEnroe’s 106. Borg won 79 of 120 points on serve (or 66%), McEnroe 65 of 106 (or 61%).


    In the 33 games I saw, Borg made 75 of 120 first serves (or 63%). McEnroe made 54 of 106 (or 51%).

    In the first tiebreak McEnroe actually missed all 6 of his first serves but still won it, while Borg made 3 of his 6. Again in the last tiebreak, McEnroe missed only 1 of his 4, while Borg missed 2 of 4.

    Borg’s service percentages by set:

    68% (in 11 games)


    41% (in 11 games)

    If we assume they held in the first two games, Borg was broken twice, McEnroe 3 times. McEnroe was broken at 2-3 in the first set and broke right back. He was broken at 3-4 in the second set and in his next service game, to open the third. But he broke Borg back at 2-1.

    Borg won 3 of 6 break points, McEnroe 2 of 12.

    Borg faced 9 break points in the first set while McEnroe faced just 1 (not including the first two games).

    Borg got his first serve into play on 10 of 12 break points (or 83%). He was broken once on first serve and once on second.

    McEnroe got his first serve into play on 5 of 6 break points (also 83%). He was broken twice on first serve, though, and once on second.

    Each man had 4 aces and 1 double.

    Borg got 17 return errors from McEnroe (12 on first serve); I judged 3 as service winners.

    McEnroe got 22 return errors from Borg (16 on first serve); I judged 2 as service winners.

    I think that Borg stands in closer to receive McEnroe’s serve than he does at the U.S. Open, or even at Wimbledon.

    WINNERS (not including the first two games)

    Borg hit 47 clean winners: 14 FH, 19 BH, 4 FHV, 3 BHV, 7 overheads.
    McEnroe hit 36 clean winners: 5 FH, 2 BH, 16 FHV, 10 BHV, 3 overheads.

    Borg had 9 service return winners, all passes, including 6 BH’s. In addition he had 13 passing shots, including 10 BH’s (one of which was a lob). Altogether he passed McEnroe 22 times.

    McEnroe had no service return winners, and just two passing shots (one off each side). Borg played the match mostly from the baseline.

    Borg's winners by set: 17, 12, 18
    McEnroe's winners by set: 16, 5, 15

    Moose did stats for their Masters match one year later:
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2011
  2. krosero

    krosero Legend

    Dec 3, 2006
    From Sports Illustrated:

    The rest of the article here:
  3. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

    Dec 27, 2005
    Pretty surprising stats, I would think Mac always had the edge in winners, win or lose, vs Borg.
  4. borg number one

    borg number one Legend

    Oct 30, 2007
    Houston, Texas
    Krosero, thanks for the stats on this excellent match. I found this thread you did with the stats, so I thought I'd add some video links here. Excellent work as always. Here are all 13 parts of this match, that were recently uploaded to YT. It's interesting to think that later in the year, they would face off in that epic '80 Wimbledon Final. Borg won against McEnroe at the 80 Masters played in Jan. 81 as well. He won the Masters events for both 1979 and 1980 (played in Jan. of 80-81), going 5-0 vs. Lendl, McEnroe, and Connors. Borg won 22 "official" indoor ATP titles among a total of 63 "official" ATP titles.

    See Parts 1-13 below in order:
  5. juan guzman

    juan guzman Rookie

    Oct 21, 2010
    According to John Barrett this match had an epic quality that lifted into a class of its own.So fast were the exchanges,so quick the thought,so brave the recoveries that the 15.437 spectators erupted time and again to acknowledge the daring deeds they witnessed.It was a match wrote Barrett to etch into the memory,in the level of the wim 80 final if not better.

    The match between Connors and Borg was also a classic.Connors broke twice in the first set to pocket the 40 minute first set 6 3.Borg won the second 6 3 and the final set was spectacular when Connors struck back from 2 5 in the third.Connors was playing by far his best match against Borg since the Open in 78.The 16.753 New Yorkers loved it concluded Barrett.

    What a Masters 1979.The final was anticlimatic when Borg duly beat his friend and practice partner Vitas Gerulaitis 6 2 6 2 in 76 minutes a fifteenth win over his Buddy.

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