Stats for 1997 AO final (Sampras-Moya)

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by krosero, Apr 28, 2009.

  1. krosero

    krosero Legend

    Dec 3, 2006
    This one has come up before because the published stats are a little confusing. I've got my own stats below and the boxscore.

    Sampras d. Moya 6-2, 6-3, 6-3

    Sampras had 24 clean winners apart from serves: 10 FH, 1 BH, 6 FHV, 5 BHV, 2 overheads.

    Moya had 10 clean winners apart from serves: 7 FH, 3 BH.

    Sampras had 12 aces and 18 other unreturned serves, 2 of which I judged as service winners.

    Moya had 2 aces and 21 other unreturned serves, 1 of which I judged as a service winner.

    LA Times:

    I have Sampras at 11 volley winners, not including 2 overheads. I’ve got him at 38 total winners if I include his 12 aces and the two service winners I gave him. And I’ve got Moya at 13 total winners if I include his 2 aces and the one service winner I gave him.

    Daily Telegraph (Sydney):

    Again, including my judgment calls I've got Sampras at 14 "service winners" and Moya at 3, with the term understood here to include aces.

    The Telegraph (UK):

    In the opening game Moya did have an ace and three other unreturned serves; here those serves are casually referred to as service winners, though I didn’t judge any of them to be more than ordinary unreturned serves.

    New York Times:

    The Age (Melbourne):

    Sampras Moya
    1st serve % 72% 63%
    Aces 12 2
    Double faults 2 3
    % won on 1st serve 82% 58%
    % won on 2nd serve 53% 41%
    Winners 38 13
    Unforced errors 22 18
    Break-point conversions 100% 50%
    Net approaches 80% 20%
    Total points won 89 59
    Match time: 1hr 27mins (sets 23, 28, 36)

    (The ATP has higher figures for Total Points Won because they counted the aces and df's twice).

    Note to 380: I think in this match when Sampras is credited with 14 "service winners", and Moya with 3, the term includes aces -- something I think also happened around this time with NBC in the 1998 W final and CBS in the 2005 USO final.

    When we debated this before I think both of us had assumed that Pete's 14 service winners were separate from his 12 aces, and technically that's possible; there are enough unreturned serves to fit them in.

    But if that happened, there are a few problems. For one, I don't see why 14 of Sampras' serves would be judged as service winners, while Moya would be credited with only 3. If you look at my count, Moya actually drew more return errors than Sampras did. Yet he gets only 3 winners on those serves while Sampras gets 14? There is no difference in how those serves looked, at least none that I could judge. The substantial difference between the two men was in the aces. Including them would explain why Sampras had so many more "service winners" than Moya.

    Also, if the service winners and aces are separate, Sampras stands at 36 winners overall (12 aces, 24 volleys and groundstrokes). To get him to 38, someone still has to give him two more judgment calls, as I did. So rather than assume that someone gave him two judgments while someone else gave him 14, I think it's simpler to read the service winners as including aces -- particularly because my judgment calls line up precisely with the totals.

    Now, this is different from an older match like the 1990 USO final. That boxscore did not combine the category of service with the other winners. It just reports placement winners on the one hand and service winners and aces on the other. And in that boxscore, the "service winners" are separate from the aces. As you wrote once, we know mathematically that Sampras' 12 service winners in that boxscore can't include his 13 aces.

    Sometimes in older matches you find the service winners explicitly described as separate from the aces, for example the 1986 W final: "Becker laid the strong hand of his service game on Lendl, 15 aces and 23 other service winners" (Atlanta Journal Constitution).

    But whenever the reported "service winners" are higher than the aces I think you'd have to consider the possibility that they include the aces.

    The Sampras-Moya service winners are mostly aces, next to just a few judgment calls. But most stats that I see nowadays are done similarly.

    Anyway that's my best explanation.
  2. 380pistol

    380pistol Banned

    Aug 15, 2008
    krosero, about the the service wnners part, my dicrepancy comes based on "mathematics and not tennis logic.

    If you have Sampras with 14 service winners with 12 of them being aces, that is mathematically possibe, as it leaves room for 2 service winners that aren't aces. Sampras with Moya 3 service winners, with 2 being aces, leaving room for that 1 service winner that was not on ace. No problem.

    So mathematices state if aces are included as sevice winners, the total ace count must always be less than the total service winner count. Like the 2005 US Open final Federer in the 3rd set was credited with 21 service winners by CBS, 13 (less than 21) being aces and 8 other service winners that weren't aces. This all makes sense.

    My discrepancy came from the 1990 US Open final where Sampras was credited with 13 aces and 12 service winners. How is that possible?? If aces (in this case) were included as service winners, that would leave 1 ace left over.....

    12 service winners (12 aces, non ace service winner), so where does the 13th ace go??? In most other cases the service winners count exceeded the ace count, so the only thing I could summize in that case (1990 US Open F) aces were not included in the service winners according to the boxscore.

    Like I've told you, in almost all cases I can see where you're coming from, but I guess official scorers. boxcores, have either changed/tweaked the way they tabulate stats, or are not following the same or one consistent format, something you do. If the service winners are higher than the aces I can see they may and/or probably include aces, but then there's this....

    ..... we've returned to grammer. "Becker had 15 aces and 23 other service winners". But you told me there was an atricle written about a Serena match which by that alone it lead one to believe they didn't include aces as service winners. But when you counted them they did. But then again journalists aren't the most tennis knowldgeable. I think if one has a journalism degree they could write grammaically correct articles, for eg.....

    Player A had X aces and Y service winners.... that leads me to believe X + Y = Z (total service winners)
    Player A had X service winners including Y aces ....which leads me to believe aces are included or....
    Player A had X aces as part of his Y service winners....

    The use of the word "and" generally leads to me to combine the 2 entites, not assume they're included together.
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2009
  3. krosero

    krosero Legend

    Dec 3, 2006
    Yes, I remember we brought up the grammar in the other thread, and one thing I suggested is that maybe the journalists themselves don't understand all the stats they're given. With variable terms and changing standards for stats, and the need to write on deadline, and not all journalists knowledgeable about tennis, this is not hard to believe.

    You're right, the use of the word "and" is what led us both to assume that the service winners and aces were separate. But the numbers don't work out well that way, and in particular I find no way to explain Sampras' 14-3 lead in "service winners" that way. But if aces are included, not only those numbers, but all the numbers, line up precisely and are easy to explain.

    The only problem, I think, with including the aces in the service winners is the use of the word "and" in the article. But like I've said before, I can't depend on the grammatical precision of journalists in such news reports as these to explain the stats.
  4. 380pistol

    380pistol Banned

    Aug 15, 2008
    Understood. When you say something or explain it, it makes sense. Well t does to me. But when I read something else (boxcores, articles) etc. then they are usally off. Like you're breakdown of #'s in this match is accurate, and makes sense to me. But when I first read I had the same article you had "12 winners and 14 service winners". You're explanation makes, the articles and boxscores doesn't always.

    Like when you count aces as winners. You'll say either....
    -X clean winners including aces
    X winners and if I include Y aces that gives me Z total which coincides with...

    So I know, and it adds up. You mention judgment calls, general reports don't give that (or any type of) breakdown, so that's where my dicrepancy came from, not you. And it didn't help in the 1990 US Open they had more aces than service winners?!? Yours mathematically add up and/or make sense and always follow the same format. But I don't think every boxscore is follows the same blueprint.
  5. krosero

    krosero Legend

    Dec 3, 2006
    Yes I was talking about essentially the same thing, but then the question was not whether the term "service winners" included aces, but whether service was included in these figures for total winners: “Williams avenged that defeat today with a display of powerful forehands and serves, walloping 28 winners and seven aces.” “dominating with an impressive 28 winners and seven aces.”

    As I said, I found the boxscore later at the AO site where the 28 winners are listed as "including service." And in my own count I had Serena hitting 20 winners apart from service, so it's easy to see how she got to 28 with her aces and probably a judgment call somewhere.

    At any rate those are just some examples where the journalists use the word "and" confusingly.
  6. thalivest

    thalivest Banned

    Oct 25, 2007
    Toronto, Ontario
    97 is really when the mens game began to fall off as far as depth. Becker retiring that year, Stich retiring, Edberg already retired, Ivanisevic never the consistent factor he was from 1990-1996 again, Agassi in another mega slump, Muster playing the best hard court tennis of his life in early 1997 then being done pretty much even on his beloved clay. It was so strong in the early to mid 90s but really fell off in the late 90s. In the early to mid 90s you would not see someone like Moya who plays way behind the baseline, and has a terrible backhand and return of serve, in a hard court slam final. No way. Please dont mention Pioline who is a much better player with a much better game than Moya on non-clay surfaces.
  7. krosero

    krosero Legend

    Dec 3, 2006
    My remaining stats:

    Sampras hit three FH return winners. None were passes but he did have 1 pass (a FH).

    Moya hit one FH return pass. He had three other passing shots (2 FH).

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