What was the best tennis season?

Third Serve

G.O.A.T.
We hear a lot of talk about most competitive seasons (AKA stronk eras), most dominant seasons (AKA weak eras), and such, but I wanted to create a thread to help us look back at some of the history of tennis. Which season, if there was any, do you believe was the most enjoyable for you to watch as a tennis viewer?

Best matches, best tournaments, best stories, best comebacks, best moments, etc. So if you think that in some certain season, you were consistently entertained by the tennis being put on display and some of your favorite players did well, then by all means nominate it here.

What about me? As a Fed fan and a lover of tennis in general, I'd have to go with 2009. Every Grand Slam had its own story/stories to go with it.

AO: Who can forget Verdasco's unforgettable semis run and that epic with Nadal? The same Nadal who later went on to defeat Federer in another match for the ages for his first hard court slam? That was one of the most epic wins ever, speaking objectively. The trophy ceremony was one that most Fed fans (myself included) would rather forget, but it's the moment that sparked the rise, as the very next slam can attest.

RG: Just like that, Soderling tossed the four-time defending champion Nadal out the window. He then made it to the final as well. And then we have Federer's amazing run to the title. 4th Round, Haas is on the other side of the court. 0-2, 3-4, 30-40, Fed is serving. I have no doubt that that inside-out forehand is etched in the minds of many a Fed fan. Next match, Delpo is up 2-1 in sets, but clutcherer strikes again and takes the win. This tournament was definitely one of the greatest mental feats I've ever seen from any athlete.

Wimbledon: Poor Roddick. That sums this tournament up very accurately. Federer had returned as the defending finalist, possibly coping with the stress of breaking the coveted Slam record. But while Nadal pulls out injured, another of Fed's old friends stepped up to the mantle. Andy Roddick discovered a newfound resurgence in this tournament as he took apart Berdych, Hewitt, and Murray to reach the Wimbledon final. That match, despite the heartbreaking end, was a fitting successor to the 2008 final, and equally dramatic. It might be the only time I ever found myself guilty rooting for Roger. But in the end, the Slam record got broken and Federer has stayed atop that lofty mountain ever since.

USO: I don't have as much to say about this one, but as Delpo is one of my favorite players, this one Slam win was also pretty cool, despite how Federer choked the final away. You gotta give it to the guy, though, crushing Nadal in straights and then going on to clutch through in five against the newly crowned GS king is an awesome achievement, and it's really interesting when you look at his progression from getting double-bageled at the AO earlier that year. It's a crying shame that injuries have screwed up his career so much.

So yeah, I loved 2009. I think that's obvious. I think the only two "problems" with it were Nadal's injuries and Djokovic's slump in form for part of the year. Even so, they had their share in the action (Madrid 2009, folks?).

Thoughts?
 

tudwell

Legend
2008 was epic af. From Fed/Tipsy/Tsonga/Djokovic at the AO all the way till Muzz tiring out Rafa at the USO, etc. Venus slaying peak Serena at Wimby :) probably the year I had the most fun watching as a fan.
Not my all-time favorite, but probably underrated by non-Nadal fans. There was definitely something special about it. Djokovic breaking through with his first slam win. Nadal finally dethroning Fed at Wimbledon and the top of the ranking. Tsonga bursting onto the scene in magical fashion. Murray stepping it up and turning the Fed-Nadal duopoly into the Big 4. And even Fed himself got some sweet redemption with his US Open win. One of his more emotional slam titles, almost up there with his French Open. Felt necessary at the time, urgent in a way almost none of his other titles felt. It felt like he would've been utterly eclipsed had one of the younger guys won that one, but he managed to hang on to at least some of his dominant, slam-winning ways.

Plus some devious fun from Simon in the second half of the year, frustrating Fedal into some embarrassing losses.
 

guitarra

Professional
2009 was the greatest year in 21st century and by far. We had so many players playing great that year:
  • Nadal (great start of the year, won his only AO in great style)
  • Federer (pretty much whole year, completed career slam and beat Pete's slam record)
  • DelPotro (his only slam won in great fashion)
  • Verdasco (his great AO run playing the tennis of his life)
  • Roddick (his legendary last WM final and good season generally)
  • Soderling (beating Nadal at Roland Garros and playing great)
  • Davydenko (WTF and end of the season)
  • Djokovic (won Paris ending his drought, maybe not great year but was still in the mix)
  • Murray (won two masters, not his best year but a good one)
So much variety, so many players playing great. 3 slam finals went 5 sets. No other season/ year comes even close to 2009.
 

Third Serve

G.O.A.T.
2009 was the greatest year in 21st century and by far. We had so many players playing great that year:
  • Nadal (great start of the year, won his only AO in great style)
  • Federer (pretty much whole year, completed career slam and beat Pete's slam record)
  • DelPotro (his only slam won in great fashion)
  • Verdasco (his great AO run playing the tennis of his life)
  • Roddick (his legendary last WM final and good season generally)
  • Soderling (beating Nadal at Roland Garros and playing great)
  • Davydenko (WTF and end of the season)
  • Djokovic (won Paris ending his drought, maybe not great year but was still in the mix)
  • Murray (won two masters, not his best year but a good one)
So much variety, so many players playing great. 3 slam finals went 5 sets. No other season/ year comes even close to 2009.
Gonzo also made the SF of RG and the quarters of RG. His AO run was also pretty underrated considering what he went through just to get to the fourth round. Had a pretty good season by his standards.

Honestly, the whole top 20 of 2009 was filled with great players with many different styles compared to what we have now:

1. Federer
2. Nadal
3. Djokovic
4. Murray
5. Delpo (it's really funny that Delpo won a fricking slam and made the WTF final but still only ended at No. 5)
6. Davydenko
7. Roddick
8. Soderling
9. Verdasco
10. Tsonga
11. Gonzalez
12. Stepanek
13. Monfils
14. Cilic
15. Simon
16. Robredo
17. Ferrer
18. Haas
19. Youzhny
20. Berdych
 

Pheasant

Hall of Fame
1981. This is when Borg's dominance was seriously threatened. Baby Lendl pushed Borg to 5 in the RG final. I watched in disbelief as McEnroe ended the Borg's insane winning streak at Wimbledon. Note: The 1980 Wimbledon final was arguably the best tennis match ever. But I was too much of a McEnroe fan to appreciate it. So I'm going with 1981. Also, McEnroe beat Borg again at the USO. 1981 was the year that really got me into tennis.

After that, 1984, although Lendl's epic comeback at the FO really ticked me off at the time.
 

mike danny

Bionic Poster
Gonzo also made the SF of RG and the quarters of RG. His AO run was also pretty underrated considering what he went through just to get to the fourth round. Had a pretty good season by his standards.

Honestly, the whole top 20 of 2009 was filled with great players with many different styles compared to what we have now:

1. Federer
2. Nadal
3. Djokovic
4. Murray
5. Delpo (it's really funny that Delpo won a fricking slam and made the WTF final but still only ended at No. 5)
6. Davydenko
7. Roddick
8. Soderling
9. Verdasco
10. Tsonga
11. Gonzalez
12. Stepanek
13. Monfils
14. Cilic
15. Simon
16. Robredo
17. Ferrer
18. Haas
19. Youzhny
20. Berdych
And do you notice how the oldest age among the top 10 players was 28, shared by Federer and Davydenko? In 2015, that was the average age of the players. Players were actually considered young at that age in 2015.
 

Third Serve

G.O.A.T.
And do you notice how the oldest age among the top 10 players was 28, shared by Federer and Davydenko? In 2015, that was the average age of the players. Players were actually considered young at that age in 2015.
Did not know that, thanks! It's amazing how so many old players are dominating the game these days. Like, where even is the Lost gen? They should have been the ones to take over at around 2015 or 2016 and the Next gen should be routinely challenging the top players by now.
 
1981. This is when Borg's dominance was seriously threatened. Baby Lendl pushed Borg to 5 in the RG final. I watched in disbelief as McEnroe ended the Borg's insane winning streak at Wimbledon. Note: The 1980 Wimbledon final was arguably the best tennis match ever. But I was too much of a McEnroe fan to appreciate it. So I'm going with 1981. Also, McEnroe beat Borg again at the USO. 1981 was the year that really got me into tennis.

After that, 1984, although Lendl's epic comeback at the FO really ticked me off at the time.
A very good year.

How about 1991? Edberg, Courier, Lendl, Becker, Agassi, Sampras and Stich.

Lendl was aging, but He still managed to defeat very good-outstanding players. https://www.atptour.com/en/players/ivan-lendl/l018/player-activity?year=1991
 

papertank

Hall of Fame
2011 is a very underrated season. It was the first time someone not only threatened but bashed a huge hole in Fedal’s dominance. Not only that but all of the big 4 played a very high level that year. There were so many great encounters, from Fed stopping Djokovic’s 40+ match win streak at RG, to Djokovic and Murray in Rome, to Djokovic and Nadal’s huge stretch of finals, to the drama filled USO semi final between Djokovic and Fed. Very exciting year.
 

metsman

G.O.A.T.
From start to finish, 09 for sure. All 4 slams were extremely memorable, WTF was one of the best, plenty of great masters matches of too, tons of drama and storylines.

99, 05, 12 were great too, but 99 started poor, 05 sort of sputtered to the finish, and 12 didn't have much depth.
 

Druss

Hall of Fame
Gonzo also made the SF of RG and the quarters of RG. His AO run was also pretty underrated considering what he went through just to get to the fourth round. Had a pretty good season by his standards.

Honestly, the whole top 20 of 2009 was filled with great players with many different styles compared to what we have now:

1. Federer
2. Nadal
3. Djokovic
4. Murray
5. Delpo (it's really funny that Delpo won a fricking slam and made the WTF final but still only ended at No. 5)
6. Davydenko
7. Roddick
8. Soderling
9. Verdasco
10. Tsonga
11. Gonzalez
12. Stepanek
13. Monfils
14. Cilic
15. Simon
16. Robredo
17. Ferrer
18. Haas
19. Youzhny
20. Berdych
That’s just insane! Would be very difficult to pick a season that tops this top 10 quality in recent years. Looking at the top 20, it’s also deep with quality. I reckon Zverev ranked No3 would be pushing for a top 15 in 2009.
 
1928, when Henri Cochet won the French and US Open, reached the final in Wimbledon to lose only to Jean Borotra, and won the Davis Cup for France. What great season that was. I remember it like it was yesterday.
Well, forgive me first and then answer my question...
You're talking about 1928 season, how old you actually are??!!
 

flanker2000fr

Professional
Well, forgive me first and then answer my question...
You're talking about 1928 season, how old you actually are??!!
I am Thor, Odinson, and I am 1,500 years old. My hammer is a 13.5 oz. Adidas GTX Pro that can conjure thunder, and returns to my hand when I drop it.




















No, really, my first comment was completely tongue in cheek. I think it's very difficult to grade the best tennis season, the sport has changed so much over the years.

I am 49 years old and my first tennis memories are probably watching Borg - Vilas in the final of the French Open in 1978.
 

MeatTornado

G.O.A.T.
2009 was insane. That year shows us that tennis is not just about the big 4.
You say that like previous years were all about the Big 4. Novak & Andy definitely made big strides in 07-08, but it's not like we were sick of their dominance and 09 was a breath of fresh air.
 
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