The Kings of Grass

NoleFam

G.O.A.T.
It was far more than that. Roddick just had no idea what Federer was all about so he could play fearless for a bit. A champion always sees through his peers and establish is own authority and Federer did just that at that time. Roddick - as solid as he was, at the end of the day, he was only as good as his results.
To me, it felt like this match happened at a crossroads—before Federer's domination and before Roddick developed a fear of him so it felt different. Roddick was so good the first half of this match and he looked like he was going to be Wimbledon champion. I do think after this he was only as good as his results but I did feel he played his best level in 2003 summer and 2004, and much higher than anything that came after.
 

ReeceSachs

Hall of Fame
Yeah OK. I guess I'm just saying I think the 2009 is more like what I'd expect of a peak for peak match, a tough 4 or 5 set match going one way or the other.
Roddick-Hewitt-Murray are all closely matched on grass. I would agree a peak for peak match will not end in straights sets like in 2006.
 

NatF

Bionic Poster
Well, at least Sampras never lost to a clay courter on grass that's for sure. And Nadal never let a grass courter beat him on clay.

Laugh it up, Nat. Good times.
Doesn't matter. Fed has 8 Wimbledons and Sampras has 7 - and he didn't get destroyed in straight sets in the QF in the middle of his run (not even a final :oops:).

But keep coming with the double standards.
 

ReeceSachs

Hall of Fame
Federer was insane on grass in 2004, the first set of that QF was maybe his best ever in grass. He wasn't as sharp in the final.

Hewitt was just in really good form, his 4R win over Moya was really high quality - check the stats on that one.
Did you get the impression he was off by his standards in the Wimbledon 2004 final before the rain delay?
 

Zara

Legend
To me, it felt like this match happened at a crossroads—before Federer's domination and before Roddick developed a fear of him so it felt different. Roddick was so good the first half of this match and he looked like he was going to be Wimbledon champion. I do think after this he was only as good as his results but I did feel he played his best level in 2003 summer and 2004, and much higher than anything that came after.
That's truly not a big enough sample to measure these two players. Federer is arguably the greatest player whereas Roddick has only 1 slam to his credit. Roddick could have never become what he never became in other words because he was never a true champion. He was a threat at best. I liked him and respected him for giving 100% in each match because I find that extremely admirable, but to me, Roddick was always a true top 10 player and that's all he had in him. We can't really afford to make any other arguments because there are no other fact-based scenarios available. It's what could have been or should have been etc.

I used to struggle with Hewitt and Murray with the same sentiment. Especially in case of Murray because I'd felt back then that he was better than Djokovic but Nole proved me wrong in every way possible. A great champion just has a different task (mindset) and they tend to rise against all odds and adversities.
 

Zara

Legend
Doesn't matter. Fed has 8 Wimbledons and Sampras has 7 - and he didn't get destroyed in straight sets in the QF in the middle of his run (not even a final :oops:).

But keep coming with the double standards.
But if you feel Sampras was a great court player/champion who left little doubt as far as Wimbledon is concerned, then all the more reason to realize that a player like him doesn't and shouldn't typically lose to any player in straight sets at Wimbledon in his prime unless there's more to it. Even in 2001, he lost to Federer in a 5 setter, case in point.

But don't let these nuances bother your little head too much.
 

NatF

Bionic Poster
Did you get the impression he was off by his standards in the Wimbledon 2004 final before the rain delay?
Yeah, even an off Federer on grass in 2004 is still a beast but he was definitely not firing at his best from the beginning there. I think it was a combination of nerves as the defending champion and favourite and Roddick pulling the trigger with such authority that he couldn't find his rhythme.
 

NoleFam

G.O.A.T.
That's truly not a big enough sample to measure these two players. Federer is arguably the greatest player whereas Roddick has only 1 slam to his credit. Roddick could have never become what he never became in other words because he was never a true champion. He was a threat at best. I liked him and respected him for giving 100% in each match because I find that extremely admirable, but to me, Roddick was always a true top 10 player and that's all he had in him. We can't really afford to make any other arguments because there are no other fact-based scenarios available. It's what could have been or should have been etc.

I used to struggle with Hewitt and Murray with the same sentiment. Especially in case of Murray because I'd felt back then that he was better than Djokovic but Nole proved me wrong in every way possible. A great champion just has a different task (mindset) and they tend to rise against all odds and adversities.
True but I just think Roddick was worth 3 Slams at least. I think he could have done that, if he stayed on the path he was on with Gilbert, kept improving his game, etc. You're right though. We can't say for sure because it is based on speculation and not fact, but for me especially, there did seem to be a change, and not for the better, when he parted ways with Brad Gilbert.
 

NatF

Bionic Poster
But if you feel Sampras was a great court player/champion who left little doubt as far as Wimbledon is concerned, then all the more reason to realize that a player like him doesn't and shouldn't typically lose to any player in straight sets at Wimbledon in his prime unless there's more to it. Even in 2001, he lost to Federer in a 5 setter, case in point.

But don't let these nuances bother your little head too much.
Again, you're so quick to make excuses for Sampras but allow non for Federer. Everything I'm saying is in response to your bitter garbage.

Considering the stuff you come out with I'd be careful about being too ironic and saying stuff like "your little head"...
 

ReeceSachs

Hall of Fame
Yeah, even an off Federer on grass in 2004 is still a beast but he was definitely not firing at his best from the beginning there. I think it was a combination of nerves as the defending champion and favourite and Roddick pulling the trigger with such authority that he couldn't find his rhythme.
I felt he was struggling with Roddick power and his serve and Roddick's actually was a little off. He started and ended the 2nd set well though and he was obviously very good after the delay.
 

ReeceSachs

Hall of Fame
True but I just think Roddick was worth 3 Slams at least. I think he could have done that, if he stayed on the path he was on with Gilbert, kept improving his game, etc. You're right though. We can't say for sure because it is based on speculation and not fact, but for me especially, there did seem to be a change, and not for the better, when he parted ways with Brad Gilbert.
Roddick was still a good player from 2005 to 2010. Mainly on HC though.
 

Zara

Legend
Again, you're so quick to make excuses for Sampras but allow non for Federer. Everything I'm saying is in response to your bitter garbage.

Considering the stuff you come out with I'd be careful about being too ironic and saying stuff like "your little head"...
But you started with the insults though with your 'double standard' and 'bitter garbage' and then play innocent that you don't attack people on a personal level. I am just following your trend now.

So let's not make excuses.

What I am debating here is fairly simple. As I see it, Nadal is the clear choice as the clay king. Federer is not as there are arguments that can be made and the fact that, Sampras is too close to him (8 vs 7) and was very dominant in his time on that surface as well and didn't lose to his main rivals.
 

Zara

Legend
True but I just think Roddick was worth 3 Slams at least. I think he could have done that, if he stayed on the path he was on with Gilbert, kept improving his game, etc. You're right though. We can't say for sure because it is based on speculation and not fact, but for me especially, there did seem to be a change, and not for the better, when he parted ways with Brad Gilbert.
Quite sadly, I used to feel the same way about Murray too and nowadays especially over time, I realized he was only good enough to win as many as he's won. Although I won't rule out one more slam!
 

NoleFam

G.O.A.T.
Quite sadly, I used to feel the same way about Murray too and nowadays especially over time, I realized he was only good enough to win as many as he's won. Although I won't rule out one more slam!
Murray had a great career though and the career I once thought Roddick would have. You should feel proud of everything he achieved and the fact that he achieved it the era he did makes it even more special.
 

NatF

Bionic Poster
But you started with the insults though with your 'double standard' and 'bitter garbage' and then play innocent that you don't attack people on a personal level. I am just following your trend now.

So let's not make excuses.

What I am debating here is fairly simple. As I see it, Nadal is the clear choice as the clay king. Federer is not as there are arguments that can be made and the fact that, Sampras is too close to him (8 vs 7) and was very dominant in his time on that surface as well and didn't lose to his main rivals.
Saying you're using double standards isn't an insult, sheesh.

I've never claimed Fed is the undisputed king of grass, I just think your arguments against Fed are terrible and full of more logical holes than Swiss cheese.
 

tennis_pro

Bionic Poster
It was 8-6 in the H2H after 2007 concluded. I wouldn't say that was smashing, I would say it was highly competitive.

It is the period of 2008 to 2013 that Nadal pulled away.
Welcome back!

And 5-2 for Fed outside of clay and all 5 of their 5 biggest non clay matches. It's the Monte Carlos that Nadal built the early h2h on.
 

mike danny

Bionic Poster
By the same token, wasn't Federer also an established clay threat at RG? Was he able to beat Nadal there?

Sampras' loss had at least perspectives. He lost to a genuine grass-court player and Kraijack got him at the right time at the right round when Sampras was still reeling from his RG semi-final loss and lost significant energy there and the surface change (from very slow to very quick) was hard to adjust. Therefore, Sampras' loss is and will always be significantly better than Federer's.
Only on your dreams is a QF loss to a one slam wonder better than a final loss to an ATG.

You also conveniently omit how Federer was reeling from his RG 2008 loss, but carry on :p
 

Zara

Legend
Saying you're using double standards isn't an insult, sheesh.

I've never claimed Fed is the undisputed king of grass, I just think your arguments against Fed are terrible and full of more logical holes than Swiss cheese.
That's right. Anything Swiss has its fair shares of holes. I am merely pointing those out.
 

Zara

Legend
Only on your dreams is a QF loss to a one slam wonder better than a final loss to an ATG.

You also conveniently omit how Federer was reeling from his RG 2008 loss, but carry on :p
You mean 'in your dreams'? Btw, if Kraijeck was a one slam wonder than so was Roddick. In the future, don't ever make a bigger case for Roddick and pass him on as one of Federer's true rivals.

Actually, I am sure that loss at the RG 2008 was devastating for Federer (I don't doubt it) and he did let Nadal get inside his head. But given that Federer too was fairly good on clay, and made a few finals there as well, why then was he put aside in straight sets in 2008 RG? He too was coming close too, was he not? So the next step would have been to beat Nadal in the final and yet, we see something entirely different.
 
Is that an excuse? Anyway, Murray did beat Federer at the Olympics final in straight sets and that's something. Though Murray is not a true champion like Federer, Nadal, Djokovic etc. he's still better than Roddick in all respects. He's probably a champion on the second level. Roddick was never one.
Nah it's not. Fred played 'true champions' Djokodal 8 times at Wimbledon and never lost in straight sets, so how come he lost in straights to a false champion like Murray? Obviously he had to play terrible, so he did. lol.
 
Why do you always have to act like the new millennium version of Ernie Goes To Camp to make your point? We kaan undastannnd yew.

Sorry. I forgot. Federer is so good he bagels and breadsticks guys who are playing the match of their lives. LOL. I must remember these things when I dwell in the house of thy lord.
I don't like your assertions and respond accordingly. ;) Don't recall insulting you personally and don't intend to, only what you say.

Hewitt was pretty awful in ze bagel set but Fred legitimately goated in the first, it was as awesome as the fabled 3-2 break game in the 07 fifth set. Hewitt also led *4-3 in the fourth and kinda mugged up, should've forced a fifth set really.
 

Mainad

Bionic Poster
But the five “next most important” are minor tournaments...competition is questionable...sorry mate, we’re talking big boy venues, I’ll stick with my list...no Murray :)
Ummm nope. Queen's has always been the next most important grasscourt tournament in the calendar and many past Wimbledon champions have first played and won there. If it were not so they wouldn't have done so.

You stick with your list and I'll stick with mine except that I have more facts to back up my case than you do your's. Sorry mate. :cool:
 

Mainad

Bionic Poster
Roddick-Hewitt-Murray are all closely matched on grass. I would agree a peak for peak match will not end in straights sets like in 2006.
Roddick and Hewitt never beat an ATG on grass. Murray did and did it twice. He is way ahead of them.
 

TMF

Talk Tennis Guru
In 2008, the grass was slow enough to allow Nadal to thrive from the baseline and of top of that, he was a very tough matchup for Federer due to well know reasons.It's not like Fed lost on a grass that was fast like back in the 90s, so your comparison with the Krajicek case is incorrect.
The clay court specialists of the 90s would have probably won Wimbledon on a grass like the one post 2001, especially in years when it was even slower and bouncier, like 2007.
Exactly.

 

Mainad

Bionic Poster
Hewitt has wins over Sampras and Federer on grass. Roddick also beat Murray and some call him an ATG ;)
Oops, forgot about Hewitt's win over Sampras at 2000 Queen's and Fed at 2010 Halle, my apologies. However Murray beat Djokovic (twice) and Federer on the most hallowed grass surface of all. :cool:

Roddick was in his best form ever at 2009 Wimbledon and deserved his win over Murray. He justified it by almost beating Fed in the final. However, their grass H2H is still 2-1 to Murray. :)
 

Sunny Ali

Hall of Fame
The point is, when Nadal beat Federer, he was primarily a clay specialist and Wimbledon was his first big win outside clay and he beat Federer, the apparent grass king who was at his peak at the moment.

On the other hand, Sampras was beaten by Kraijack who was also great on grass or had the game to be lethal on grass and upset anyone even Pete.

It would have been unheard of to be beaten by a clay specialist on grass in the final no less in the 90s. Especially if you take into a player like Federer into account who’s supposed to be the grass king.

No excuses please.
Great post Zara! (y)
 

tonylg

Hall of Fame
The saddest thing about that diagram is that in 2003, it was ALREADY slow and high bouncing .. and they made it worse.

Nothing since 2001 is a true measure of a player's grass court ability, including Federer.
 

DSH

Legend
The saddest thing about that diagram is that in 2003, it was ALREADY slow and high bouncing .. and they made it worse.

Nothing since 2001 is a true measure of a player's grass court ability, including Federer.
Is there a big difference between the 2000 and 2001 editions of Wimbledon?
 

mike danny

Bionic Poster
You mean 'in your dreams'? Btw, if Kraijeck was a one slam wonder than so was Roddick. In the future, don't ever make a bigger case for Roddick and pass him on as one of Federer's true rivals.

Actually, I am sure that loss at the RG 2008 was devastating for Federer (I don't doubt it) and he did let Nadal get inside his head. But given that Federer too was fairly good on clay, and made a few finals there as well, why then was he put aside in straight sets in 2008 RG? He too was coming close too, was he not? So the next step would have been to beat Nadal in the final and yet, we see something entirely different.
Au contraire, Krajicek is a worse player than Roddick career wise. He did not reach another slam final after his success.

Clay is Fed's weakest surface, but he is still better on it than Sampras. It doesn't mean he has to beat Nadal at RG, while you keep finding all excuses for Sampras. It's laughable really.

In no universe was Pete's loss better, especially since at his very peak he did not even win a set.
 
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Not that I'm aware of. Why?

To my knowledge, 2002 was the year they changed both the grass and the balls.

Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
You’re right it was after the 2001 tourney.


“Following the 2001 championship, Wimbledon ripped up all of its courts and sowed new ones made of 100% perennial rye grass. The old courts were a 70-30 split of rye grass and creeping red fescue and caused the baseline area to become one large patch of dirt by the end of the tournament. The change was ostensibly made to make the courts more durable. But because rye grass stands taller and its soil is drier and firmer, the side effect was that the ball now bounced higher and slower.”
 

ForehandRF

Hall of Fame

“Following the 2001 championship, Wimbledon ripped up all of its courts and sowed new ones made of 100% perennial rye grass. The old courts were a 70-30 split of rye grass and creeping red fescue and caused the baseline area to become one large patch of dirt by the end of the tournament. The change was ostensibly made to make the courts more durable. But because rye grass stands taller and its soil is drier and firmer, the side effect was that the ball now bounced higher and slower.”

[/QUOTE]
Good post.Some posters here disagreed with me when I said that in 2001 it was still the old grass.
 

Tennis_Hands

Bionic Poster
Not that I'm aware of. Why?

To my knowledge, 2002 was the year they changed both the grass and the balls.

Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
They changed it in 2001, but the conditions at Wimbledon that year made it play like the old grass. It is also possible that, being the first year of the change and all they were still experimenting how and what works. In any event, the change was gradual, as it was the first year with the new grass formula. It is obvious that its properties could be quite varied even within the same formula as the regress towards slower speeds and higher bounces in the last decade plus showed.

 

Hitman

Hall of Fame
Au contraire, Krajicek is a worse player than Roddick career wise. He did not reach another slam final after his success.

Clay is Fed's weakest surface, but he is still better on it than Sampras. It doesn't mean he has to beat Nadal at RG, while you keep finding all excuses for Sampras. It's laughable really.

In no universe was Pete's loss better, especially since at his very peak he did not even win a set.
I'm a massive Pete fan, and while I still stand by the fact that you cannot compare eras, Pete's world was very different to the world we have seen these past few years, if you had to put everyone side by side and had to choose, then the numbers favor Federer. It is Federer when you look at just what he has achieved on this surface.
 

mike danny

Bionic Poster
To me, Fed's grass king credentials have taken a huge hit in the last 6 years. I can't consider him the best ever on this surface with a 0-3 record against Novak in Wimb finals.

Most accomplished? Yes. Best? Not a chance.
 

Tennis_Hands

Bionic Poster
To me, Fed's grass king credentials have taken a huge hit in the last 6 years. I can't consider him the best ever on this surface with a 0-3 record against Novak in Wimb finals.

Most accomplished? Yes. Best? Not a chance.
That is OK. You probably have the whole story and all those 33 y o plus ATGs poised vs 26 y o ATGs that have defended their status as the "best ever" at their favourite Major. If that is the case you are straight up just observing the trend.

 

Hitman

Hall of Fame
That is OK. You probably have the whole story and all those 33 y o plus ATGs poised vs 26 y o ATGs that have defended their status as the "best ever" at their favourite Major. If that is the case you are straight up just observing the trend.

Even the fact Federer is making Wimbledon finals at 38 years old is staggering....Not sure how it lessens his legacy. Legends like Pete had already been retired for seven years up to that point.
 

Fedforever

Hall of Fame
There's no-one who consistently attacks the net like a McEnroe, Becker, Edberg or Sampras.
I watched the classic 1980 Borg/McEnroe tie-break recently having not seen it since it happened and just realised how much things have changed - it's like watching a whole different game!

It made me realise though that whereas the long rallies might be threatening the five set game, they are very good for TV highlights. Because of the build-up from the rallies you still get some sense of excitement despite knowing the result. Whereas the Borg/McEnroe tiebreak - it's just impossible it to explain to anyone how incredible and tense it was to watch at the time. The rallies are so short that knowing the result in advance just takes all that away. Whereas if you watch the famous rally from the fifth set in AO 2017 it still feels a bit like you're actually there.

I
 

Fedforever

Hall of Fame
But given that Federer too was fairly good on clay, and made a few finals there as well, why then was he put aside in straight sets in 2008 RG? He too was coming close too, was he not? So the next step would have been to beat Nadal in the final and yet, we see something entirely different.
Suspect it was a combination of Nadal being utterly incredible in that tournament and Federer not being at absolute peak fitness.

I take a similar view on the Soderling/Nadal match, where the debate is always "was Soderling brilliant or was Nadal below par" . Simplest explanation is that it was a bit of both.
 
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