Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by 90's Clay, Aug 22, 2012.
pc1, Thanks for your support. Federer had his big problems with Tsonga as well.
Did you see how well Tsonga was serving and how hard he was hitting the ball? No shame in being played hard for 4 sets by Tsonga, Federer pulled away in the fifth. Nadal was given a right thumping by Tsonga at the AO 2008...
Gimeno would have been the favourite in the amateurs to win at Roland Garros for 1963 to 1967 and maybe also for 1961 and 1962.
And don't underrate Gimeno on grass: He reached final of the first Australian Open after a win against Rosewall, he reached, as an old man, Wimbledon SF, he lost at 35 to Smith in five sets in the US Open, he finished ahead of Rosewall in the 1967 Newport tournament, he beat Rosewall in the 1967 US Pro in straight sets and lost to Laver (in Rod's best year) in four...In his peak he was awesome on any surface! Thus he could have won more than 12 amateur majors.
Sorry I don't agree with you. A guy doesn't go from winning absolutely nothing in the pro ranks to winning 12+ amateur slams. This is just your attempt to boost the pro champions of the time.....Laver and guess who, Rosewall!
Dan, Bach in my opinion is one of the top four, Händel one of the top eight but Haydn (the Emerson of music) is not in my top ten: no deep feeling, no moving music, 100 times the same symphony composed...
Dan, I understand.
Phoenix, I don't have an pro scene agenda. I go with facts only.
Gimeno winning absolutely nothing in the pro ranks? He won nine tournaments where he beat both Laver and Rosewall and about 30 more where he beat at least one of them. In 1966 he won both big claycourt tournaments thus being No.1 claycourter of the words. He thrice beat my "darling", Rosewall in pro majors. In the first open year he beat "amateur king" Emerson 6:1 matches...
By the way, Laver and Rosewall won 8 out of the first ten open era majors where they participated even though they were seniors...
I would agree with you with Djokovic. He hasn't accomplished enough yet. Hopefully you're wrong about Nadal and I sure you want to be wrong about him.
Look, Rosewall was well past prime when open tennis arrived, and he won more than his share of Open majors against Newcombe, Roche, Ashe and other younger players.
Rosewall probably peaked in 1958-59, when he ranked third behind Gonzales and Hoad.
Think about it.
Sedgman picked Kramer number one, but on consistency, Gonzales second, but in 1964 he stated that when Hoad was playing well he was "unbeatable".
That is what I mean by "peak", a great player on a hot day.
Sedgman himself had some great days where he could overwhelm Gonzales and Kramer (in Cleveland, for example, the reporter stated that Sedgman played at a much higher level than Kramer that day.)
I don't think Kramer had "hot" days, where he played "above himself", just an incredible consistency.
Riggs stated that he could beat Kramer for a few matches, but that Kramer wore him down in a long series.
Gonzales suggested the same, and seemed to have more respect for Budge.
The first time Roger lost to Tsonga in a major was in Wimbledon 2011, a five setter and then Roger was just one month away from his 30th birthday. He was past his prime.
Yes I know. I have a lot of respect for the old pro because Rosewall proved how strong he was, not only in the early days of the open era, but until the end of the 70's! It is not to please Bobby that I have him in the second place of my list. But to there is a long way between acknowledging the greatness of Ken, Rod and Gorgo, and claiming the greatness of some Trabert, like Bobby does, because he defeated the top guy in a few tournaments. Davydenko won a lot of tournament too (considering the norm of the current era), including some important one, and he defeated the top guys in the process: Nadal several time, Federer, Del Potro, etc.
I can't see Davydenko as an all time great, and it seems to me that Trabert was a kind of Davydenko.
I believe you are wrong there by a mile. Trabert was a tremendous player with a big serve, huge groundies (especially the backhand) and a top volley. He wasn't the quickest player in the world but he had every shot. He was overshadowed by guys like Gonzalez, Rosewall, Sedgman and Hoad although he could defeat them even on some big occasions.
The man won five classic majors and two pro majors over Gonzalez and Sedgman. He was a terrific player on all surfaces.
I'm just comforted in what I think. Davydenko is just an example, but I'm speaking about dozen of players who are really good, who have strong weapons, who were overshadowed by top players, even if they did beat them from time to time. The field of the 1956 french pro is not that impressive by the way: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Pro_Championship_Draws#1959
I was trying to think of a player of recent times that comes closest to Trabert. It's tough because players have two handers now instead of one handers. The closest I could think of as a match for Trabert may be Agassi. Trabert like Agassi had a great forceful return. They were strong on backhand and forehand and they weren't the quickest on the court. Trabert was a superior volleyer and had a better serve but Agassi was probably quicker. I do think Agassi's groundies were somewhat stronger.
May not be the best comparison but for now that's the best I could think of.
I didn't mean playing style but playing level. A lot of players deserve full recognition, but a top-10 list have to be a little bit selective, otherwise we can simply list the numerous players who impressed us, played good to great on some occasion, and so on.
I also meant playing level. Trabert didn't have as long a career as Agassi but he was superb. I would say Agassi was perhaps better but at that high level it's debatable.
Maybe Boris Becker would be a better match as far as level and style of play for recent players.
Flash, I can't remember that I was claiming the greatness of Trabert, But in fact he was a great player, as Sedgman, Hoad and Segura also were.
pc1, I think that Becker was stronger than Trabert.
urban and Mustard, I miss your contributions since a while. Hope you are well.
By the way, I'm well now after my long cold.
Of course, PC1 is right, I wish Nadal the best on his return.
I certainly do.
Really? You must have heard some bad Haydn performances.
Try Toscanini, Furtwangler, Bernstein, Davis (Concertgebouw) for the symphonies.
For the Creation, Karajan with Wunderlich (live and studio).
For the piano sonatas, Glenn Gould (I lived and worked a few blocks from him for some years, but never met him).
Consult a book written by my former teacher and friend, Philip Downs, "Classical Music" published by Norton.
Emerson made a good run at Forest Hills in 1969 and Wimbledon in 1970.
Gimeno did what at Wimbledon?
Emerson and Gimeno met at Wimbledon in 1959. No contest.
Andres reached the semis.But peak Newcombe just crushed him.Newcombe is heavily underrated by some of those that worship Rosewall and Gimeno.and maybe those that have in such high esteem minor players such as Nusslein and Segura...
You may be right but I'm trying to find a relative match to Trabert in recent times. Both good serve and volley who had good groundies. I think Trabert was superior on clay. Becker had the bigger serve but Trabert's serve was pretty strong.
For Sedgman I would think the relative match would be Edberg. Both are considered by some to be the best volleyer ever. Both had very good but not great serve and both exceptional movers. Sedgman had a superior forehand to his backhand while Edberg's backhand was superior to his forehand. In this case I could see Sedgman as the superior player.
In 1970, Newcombe crushed Gimeno, but just barely beat Emerson at 11-9 in the fifth in the previous round.
Dan, Haydn has "cold" music without feelings, without highlights...
Gimeno reached SF at Wimbledon in 1970!
Nüsslein and Segura minor players? Only a minor expert can say that.
You must have heard some cold performances. Listen to Bernstein, Karajon, Gould and hear the feelings.
Gimeno made a poor showing that year against Newcombe, Emmo almost won against Newk.
In 1959, Emmo clobbered Gimeno at Wimbledon.
Correction.Not minor players but slamless ones.
I know, still the semis are better than the quarters.
Dan, I just wonder how many posts about Emerson and Gimeno I and other posters are forced to write before you and others accept that Gimeno was stronger than Emerson...
kiki, This sounds better but you might know that Nüsslein and Segura won some pro majors.
kiki, Yes, and we should consider that Gimeno fared much better generally in open GS tournaments than Emerson: Gimeno reached four SFs while Emerson did not reach any.
Dan, I only have heard "cold performances". And I have heard the best musicians. I can give you the difference between f.i. Schubert (or Beethoven) and Haydn: Schubert's music brings me to tears, Haydn's music brings me to yawn... Robert Schumann once said that Haydn is dull.
No amount of posts would make me rank Gimeno ahead of Emerson. The very thought is just absurd to me. Basically in your view a guy could dominate the amateurs as much as he wanted but he would still not be greater than a guy who never won an amateur or pro major. This is all part of your agenda to make Rosewall's competition look incredibly tough and thus raise his status.
Why would it be absurd when people like Jack Kramer and the Wimbledon seeding committee thought Gimeno was the superior player when Open Tennis started, at least on grass? Gimeno was seeded third at the first Open Wimbledon and Emerson fifth. Kramer thought for much of the 1960's that Gimeno was the third best player in the world behind Laver and Rosewall.
The point is that you may be correct (and you may be incorrect) but the notion that BobbyOne puts forth is not ridiculous. Facts are that Gimeno had a better head to head against Emerson and fact is the during the Open Era Gimeno won a major and Emerson did not.
Emerson was an excellent player but we all know (and I use the word know not believe) that there is no way Emerson would have won 12 majors during a truly Open Era in the 1960's. Gimeno often defeated Laver and Rosewall during the same tournament to win a tournament. You could not have much tougher than that for competition.
Many may say Emerson was the superior player but the notion was that Gimeno was a better player than Roy Emerson is not a notion that only BobbyOne had but many knowledgeable experts in the game. I pointed out just a few earlier in the post.
Here's the seedings for the 1968 Wimbledon below.
At the 1968 US Open Gimeno was dropped to tenth seed but Emerson was dropped to fourteenth seed.
Either way the people at the time who did the seedings thought Gimeno was at least for grass superior to Emerson.
3rd best player in the world in a particular decade could not win a single major tournament - I'm including pro majors - in that decade? Doesn't that strike you as a bit of an odd thought? No matter how strong the top two, the 3rd best should have been able to win majors (I refer you to the case of Djokovic in comparison to Federer/Nadal).
I can only assume the seeding system at that time was not as scientific as it is today. In fact Wimbledon, even until relatively recently, picked and chose their seeding and did not base it on official rankings. Kramer obviously had a vested interest in seeing pros seeded highly.
h2h doesn't mean much when ranking greats IMHO - could have been a match-up issue. I give credit to Gimeno for his FO in 1972 but fact is that's the only major title he ever won, amateur, pro or Open.
Never in a pro major though.
Yes, and I can (sort of) understand why they thought that - but IMHO they were giving way too much credit to the 'lesser' professionals ahead of the leading amateurs. Laver and Rosewall were the only pros who went on to dominate the early years of the Open Era (Gonzales of course put in tremendous performances for his age).
I guess all I'm saying is that, although we should rank the pros well above the amateurs, there has to be some kind of cut-off point, so we can't rank a guy who won 1 Open Era slam above a guy who won 12 amateur slams.
The amateur-pro ranking pre 1968 is one of the biggest problems for proper evaluation. I prefer two separate rankings for each year. Before the internet age and some new books like that one of McCauley, amateur tennis often was regarded as the lone worldwide circuit, while the pros were seen as outlaws, who played only exhibitions at secondary venues. So historically, and we see this still in public polls, pro tennis has been underrated. The level of pro tennis was generally higher than that of the amateurs, all new pros confirmed this. On the other hand, really great amateurs adapted well to the new format and the difficult circumstances and reached the top of the pro game, after dealing with a rough bapstism for a half year or so.
Nevertheless i am not dogmatic in this question and would regard different time periods. In the late 50s for instance, when all top players had turned pro, there was no contest between pros and amateurs. In the early 50s however, the pro circuit was quite a mess (no valid circuit, Kramer often absent, Pancho in and out, few leading tournaments and players), and in some years like 1952, players like Sedgman could be ranked among or on top of the best pros. For the 60s, i think amateurs like Emerson or Santana had real class and would have done well at the pros. If they were better than Gimeno is a tricky question, i would put them technically quite on the same level. I have seen all three quite often on tv, Gimeno and Emmo live. I even saw a Spoga Cup final 1969 at Cologne between these two, with Gimeno winning in two long close sets. The last match i saw from Gimeno was a fine Hilversum final against Okker over 5 sets. My take is, that Gimeno technically and tactically was the most sound and consistent player of these three, but that Santana was more unpredictable and on occasion, when getting hot, more dangerous (like Nastase). Emmo was the most athletic and fit and mentally the strongest. In a big final or Davis Cup tie i would have feared him the most.
That's too bad.
Haydn is vastly under-rated. I'll take Haydn over Mozart in almost any genre.
Haydn is earthier and wittier, and rhythmically more interesting. Mozart is too elegant, too Rococo, too suave, too superficial, too saccharine. (Torture--thy name is Eine Kleine Nachtmusik.) Try Haydn's Symphony No. 92 or No. 88 or No. 45. Try Adam Fischer's performances. Try Haydn's Piano Sonata No. 32 or 42 or 59, or the Piano Trio No. 38. Wonderful stuff!
It's a very good thing that Haydn was Beethoven's teacher and not Mozart.
My latest - ' King Fed/Laver/Sampras/Nadal/Borg/Agassi/Connors/Emerson/Lendl/McEnroe/.
Phoenix1983, Your hate against me makes me tired. You don't have any serious arguments and neglect all arguments I and others have given you.
You are very nasty that you claim I have a Rosewall agenda in praising Gimeno.
Why do I praise also Nüsslein, Segura and Kovacs f.i., all of them certainly underrated? To push Rosewall too???
Emerson did NOT dominate the amateurs as much as he wanted. In fact he only dominated two years and generally lost many majors he should have won.
Gimeno won an open GS tournament while Emerson failed totally in open era.
Gimeno reached four open era major's SFs, Emerson none.
In your ignorance you not only try to blame Rosewall for not winning Wimbledon (even though you are disproved already) but also cannot imagine what was the reason why Gimeno did not win a pro major. Guess what!!!
Phoenix, Gimeno did beat Rosewall in four majors.
Gimeno, Gonzalez, Anderson, Buchholz and Ralston showed in open era how strong they still were.
Haydn ahead of Mozart? I mean to dream a nightmare. ALL composers after them claimed that Mozart was greater. Beethoven admired only Mozart, not Haydn.
Haydn does not have any feelings in his music. He lacks any increasing of emotions and highlights. In fact he does not have any emotions apart from wit.
Eine kleine Nachtmusik is a great work but not one of Mozart's best. Did you ever hear the Requiem or the 40th symphony or the Piano concertos 466 and 491?. They have all what great music needs.
bluegrasser, Emerson ahead of Rosewall????????????
That alone makes your list very doubtful.
Don´t overrate his FO title.depleted fields and a journeyman in the finals, Patrick Proiysy.
They were second fidder although they must have been very good players.
Gimeno fared worse, in my view.
Emmo and Gimeno both lost to Laver and Newcombe at some of those events, but Emmo gave Laver and Newk their toughest matches of the tournament, while Gimeno lost in straight sets.
Gimeno had relatively easy pathways to those standings.
No, Emmo looks better.
Their only meeting was at Wimbledon in 1959, and Emmo crushed Gimeno.
Schumann must have heard bad performances.
Again, listen to Karajan with Wunderlich in the Creation, both studio and live, and then tell me that you hear no emotion. Wunderlich was the Haydn singer of them all.
Or Gould in the sonatas.
Furtwangler in symphony 88 (Furtwangler was never dull), or Bernstein in the symphonies (always had passion and a range of emotions).
As an Austrian, you must appreciate these performers.
And get a hold of Philip Downs' book "Classical Music" for an understanding of Haydn's life and compositional approach.
Separate names with a comma.