Who was the better player: Krajicek or Rafter?

Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by djones, Jan 30, 2006.


Who was the better player?

Poll closed Mar 1, 2006.
  1. Krajicek

    0 vote(s)
  2. Rafter

    0 vote(s)
  1. djones

    djones Hall of Fame

    May 19, 2004
    I thought this might be a nice comparishment!

    Krajicek has a 7-2 advantage in Head to Heads.
    Krajicek has won 17 Tournaments, Rafter 11.

    Rafter has won the US open twice and made the Finals of wimbledon 3 times, while Krajicek has only won Wimbledon once and hasn't made it to any GS finals.
  2. Andres

    Andres G.O.A.T.

    Apr 21, 2005
    Mar del Plata, Argentina
    Krajicek had better serve and Rafter got better volleys.
    When you play them both together, you got Pete Sampras ;)
  3. Grimjack

    Grimjack Banned

    Feb 18, 2004
    I would say Krajicek was the better player, and Rafter had the better career.

    Put another way, Krajicek was better, while Rafter was "greater."

    This is in the same way I would say Rios was a better player than, say, Sergi Bruguera or Andres Gomez, but by no means did he have as great a career as either man.
  4. laurie

    laurie Guest

    In this instance it doesn't matter at all who the better player was. They were both very good and have significant achievements.

    The only thing I can think of is that Krajicek had a better forehand and a very good running forehand.
  5. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

    Apr 22, 2005
    Like Michael Stich, Krajicek had all the shots and was one of the most talented players in the 90s, but an underachiever, partly due to his (physically) weak knees and injury problems, partly due to a lack of motivation. Rafter was a late bloomer, maybe an overachiever - Becker never thought of him as top 5 material -, who was a sort of serve-and- volley grinder with a weak backhand. His excessive kicker later gave him trouble on his shoulder and back. And maybe because of his late surge to the top, he never believed fully in himself as a top player. He blew his chances to get the computer Nr.1 in 1998 (when he was the real Nr.1), and choked away at least 1 Wimbledon, vs. Sampras 2000, when leading 4-1 with his serves to come in the 2nd set tiebreaker. Maybe Rafter was more popular, bur Kraj was the better player.
  6. nickybol

    nickybol Semi-Pro

    Sep 15, 2005
    Richard Krajicek didn`t lack motivation. He didn`t have a good childhood, his father was not very nice to his kid at that time, he is now. Richard became a kid that was quickly scared, and later on he broke up with his father. He had some mental problems because of the public opinion in the Netherlands.
  7. omniexist

    omniexist Semi-Pro

    Sep 9, 2004
    Krajicek was more talented...monster serve...hard groundies...

    But Rafter was more athletic and made the most of his talent (more or less).
  8. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

    Feb 11, 2004
    When Krajicek was on, he was unstoppable. Rafter was more consistent and "on" more often. Rafter had the better legs and physical stamina. If they were horses, Krajicek would've been a thoroughbred and Rafter a quarter horse.
  9. Phil

    Phil Hall of Fame

    Feb 11, 2004
    In a tent, along the Silk Road
    Agree with this, totally; especially the horse metaphor!

    Krajicek, when he was healthy, didn't have a weakness-the massive serve is obvious, but he has a deft touch at the net and hit laser beams from both sides on the baseline-he had one sweet one-handed b/h. Rafter was the consumate serve and vollyer and was quicker and more athletic than RK, but stroke for stroke, RK comes out ahead. I really liked watching both of them play, and was sorry to see them both retire way too early, for my tastes at least.
  10. Kobble

    Kobble Hall of Fame

    Feb 19, 2004
    Rafter had the better career, but only because of Krajicek's injuries. Krajicek steamrolled players when he was on, and it was basically big serve and put away the floater. Then, after an easy hold, he rushed the net on your serve and forcing you to hit passing shots. I've seen him beat 3 multi-slam winners(Sampras, Agassi, Ivanisevic and Kafelnikov) in one tournament. No way you get by that bunch on a typical hot streak.
  11. RiosTheGenius

    RiosTheGenius Hall of Fame

    Apr 4, 2005
    Textbook wise I think Krajicek was the better player, but Rafter was a champ, a guy who would always be a factor at slams. Rafter was mentally a better competitor though inferior in many ways next to Krajicek (that BH !!!)

    let's put it this way..... they were both better than Slava Dosedel :)
  12. xanctus

    xanctus Semi-Pro

    Jul 16, 2005
    I like both, but I think Pat. Rafter is better...
  13. Babblelot

    Babblelot Professional

    Jun 25, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    As much as I like Kraijcek, I have to go with Rafter, despite their H2H. Having said that, I've thoroughly enjoyed reading your comments.

    Excellent arguments.

    (I'm still trying to get Kafelnikov at least on par with Rafter.) :p
  14. federerhoogenbandfan

    federerhoogenbandfan Banned

    Mar 5, 2005
    If Krajiceck had not been such a big underachiever in grand slams I would say Krajieck. However Krajiceck was a big underachiever in grand slams, and Rafter IMO was a bit of an overachiever to win back to back U.S Opens, and back to back Wimbledon finals, and the semis of all 4 slams. So I went with Rafter. I think Krajiceck had more ability, but was too injury prone, and got too nervous for grand slams.
  15. Dedans Penthouse

    Dedans Penthouse Legend

    Feb 11, 2004
    Joe Pike
    Tundra, planet williams, are you two stupid or what?! Steffi Graf was clearly better than Rafter or Krajicek!

    Agree, with Rafter as being more consistent, but Krajicek (when healthy) the more dangerous threat to beat anyone.
  16. tenalyser

    tenalyser Rookie

    Jan 23, 2006
    I my opinion Richard was the better player (talent wise) but Rafter was the one who fulfilled his potential. When Richard was on even Sampras couldn't stop him so imagine if he hadn't all those injuries to prevent him , he could have been a major threat to Sampras.
  17. 35ft6

    35ft6 Legend

    Feb 18, 2005
    This is a very interesting topic. Urban pretty much nailed it. Rafter was a serve and volley grinder. How is that even possible I have no idea but somehow Patrick managed to be one. Nothing looked natural to Rafter, he always seemed like he was scrambling even if the ball came right to him. Go figure.

    Krajicek had all the shots and every shot looked effortless. He looked well coached/trained, whereas Patrick looked like he learned tennis from books he borrowed from the library.

    But who's the "better" player? Tough to say.
  18. djones

    djones Hall of Fame

    May 19, 2004
    I'm quite surprised actually about the Rafter's 34 votes to Krajicek's 14!
    I thought it would have been a closer poll.
    From reading the arguments you'd think that the poll would be something like 28 - 20.
  19. Yours!05

    Yours!05 Professional

    Mar 11, 2005
    You've invited them??
  20. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

    Dec 27, 2005
    Krajicek probably has the record for most retirements in slams. Guy always had an injury.
    Agree with what was said. Agassi/Sampras feared him more than Rafter, even though they played Rafter in more big matches. Rafter did get to #1 however(briefly) something Krajicek didn't do.

    An example of Krajicek's talent:he missed all of '01 due to injury. Makes his comeback at Wimbledon '02, makes the quarters, is a couple points aways from winning. I think he would have made the final had he won that match(this was the year that Nalbandian made the final). Even without any match play for 1 1/2 year, he was a very dangerous player on grass(and this was the slow grass that Wimbledon switched to in '02) & legit threat to win Wimbledon that year.

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