WORLD NO. 1 (by year)

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by hoodjem, Oct 30, 2009.

  1. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter G.O.A.T.

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    It appears that, unlike Rosewall fanboys and their imaginary magical, mystery, deciding tour, Carlo Giovanni Colussi understands the purpose of this kind of thread.
     
  2. 70sHollywood

    70sHollywood Semi-Pro

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    Rosewall won a "World Championship" match and so must be considered as a possible number 1, right?
     
  3. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    There was no World Championship Tour in 1964. Buchholz in my recent communication with him make it very clear that there was no World Championship Tour in 1964.

    Rosewall could not have won any World Championship Tour in 1964.
     
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2016
  4. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne G.O.A.T.

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    Thank you so much, Dan, for this top joke! About 43 times you have explained that the 1964 tour cannot be a world championship tour because it did not have the label "world championship tour" . Now you claim that the (short) New Zealand tour was the true and deciding world championship even though you admit it did not have the label "world championship".

    You are truly funny, boy!!!
     
  5. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne G.O.A.T.

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    70sHollywood, At least we do know as of now that Rosewall won the deciding tour (see Buchholz article).

    I still plead for a split No.1 for 1964.
     
  6. Dan Lobb

    Dan Lobb Hall of Fame

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    The deciding tour, whether or not it was officially labelled world championship, we do not know yet, was obviously the 4 man NZ tour of 1964, an elite tour using the traditional world championship format.
     
  7. Dan Lobb

    Dan Lobb Hall of Fame

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    We do not yet know if it had the title world championship, although it should be regarded as the deciding tour for that year.
     
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2016
  8. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne G.O.A.T.

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    Dan, It's too curious and funny what you write...
     
  9. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne G.O.A.T.

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    Dan, You even don't realize that you contradict your own words that you have used so many times about the big "Buchholz" tour, now when taking over my argumentation that a tour can be deciding even without an official title. That's double standard and cherry picking...
     
  10. Dan Lobb

    Dan Lobb Hall of Fame

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    Bobby, I cannot match your wild sense of humour.
     
  11. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne G.O.A.T.

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    Dan, I do hope that you will not get "difficulties" with your friend, Limpinhitter, because you also use now the term "deciding tour"...
     
  12. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne G.O.A.T.

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    Dan, Don't worry. You can't match me also at other points (such as tennis history, logic etc).
     
  13. Dan Lobb

    Dan Lobb Hall of Fame

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    This has the appearance of a deciding tour.
     
  14. NatF

    NatF Talk Tennis Guru

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    1964 has been done to death what about 1960 and 1961? ;)
     
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  15. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    Gonzalez won legitimate World Championship Tours in 1960 and 1961 so he was clear World Champion both years.

    In 1960 the World Championship Tour won over Rosewall, Segura and Hoad was quite an overwhelmingly win by Gonzalez. Gonzalez was an incredible 49-8 which was miles ahead of Rosewall's 32-25 followed by Segura at 22-28 and Olmedo trailing the field at 11-44. Gonzalez individually, according to Krosero's new numbers was 19-5 against Rosewall head to head on that tour. Most sources have Gonzalez at 15-4 against Rosewall. Having won the World Title for that year Gonzalez, except for a small tournament won took the rest of the year off. Rosewall that year won six tournaments including Wembley and the French Pro. An excellent showing. Rosewall was 62-30 for the entire year with at least half or more of those losses to Gonzalez. It was a superb year by Rosewall and if he never played Gonzalez it would look like an awesome year but he faced a clearly superior player on that tour. It is arguable that Rosewall had a superior year (although I don't believe so) overall because of his excellent tournament record.

    However in measuring the level of both Gonzalez versus Rosewall we cannot forget how he pulverized Rosewall on this tour in 1960 by a huge margin head to head (19 to 5 according to Krosero) and overall on tour in winning 17 more matches on a 57 match tour 49-8 by Gonzalez to 32-25 by Rosewall. This is especially impressive considering Gonzalez would be 32 on May 9th that year and imo past his prime by a few years. Rosewall was 25 the whole tour and would be 26 on November 2nd that year and at his absolute peak. Rosewall was a veteran of the Pro Tour and was used to the tour conditions yet he couldn't come close to handling Gonzalez! There was about a 6.5 year age gap between the two.

    Let me compare the Gonzalez year in 1960 to team sports or World Championship individual sports. I'll use an example in the 1987 Season in Major League Baseball in the United States. The Minnesota Twins in 1987 won their division with a good by not great record of 85-77. They entered the Baseball Playoffs to determine the World Champion in 1987 as huge underdogs to the Detroit Tigers who won 98 games and lost 64 games. Yet the Twins defeated the Tigers 4 games to 1 and advanced to the World Series against the powerful St. Louis Cardinals who won 95 and lost 67. Again the Twins were huge underdogs to the Cardinals in that World Series in which the first to win 4 games would win. The Minnesota Twins amazingly enough rallied from 3-2 down in the World Series to win the last 2 games to win the World Series 4 games to 3 and therefore became the 1987 World Champions of Majors League Baseball! There is no doubt they were the official World Champions in 1987 because they won the postseason playoffs.

    If this was tennis perhaps some moronic voters would vote the Tigers or Cardinals as World Champions because of their superior regular season records. That's however not the way it works and clearly the Twins were the champions. The Tigers or Cardinals, if given the choice to trade their season for the Twins wouldn't hesitate for a fraction of a second to do it.

    I will also use the example of the 100 meter dash in 2015. We all know of Usain Bolt but apparently his rival Justin Gatlin was seemingly invincible in 2015 defeating Bolt several times. Bolt won when he needed to and was World Champion. Gatlin probably had the better year. Bolt was World Champion. You could argue that Bolt was perhaps more talented and could turn it on if he needed assuming no injury. This would easily be the case with Pancho Gonzalez versus Ken Rosewall also imo.

    http://edition.cnn.com/2015/08/23/sport/world-athletics-championship-gatlin-bolt/

    In 1961 it seems to me that it is a much easier choice. Gonzalez won his usual World Championship Tour keeping his World Championship over players like GImeno, Lew Hoad, Tony Trabert, MacKay, Olmedo and Buchholz. However he also won the US Pro with a field with Sedgman, Gimeno, MacKay, Parker and Giammalva in it. He won the prestigious Geneva Gold Trophy with a field of Trabert, Rosewall, Buchholz, Gimeno, Segura, Davies and MacKay in that. Gonzalez defeated Rosewall on clay in that final 8-6 6-0. Gonzalez won the Scandinavian Pro Champs in a powerful field with Rosewall, Cooper, Davies, Olmedo, MacKay, Ayala, Segura, Hoad and Anderson in it. Gonzalez also won the Milan Pro Champs over another powerful field with Trabert, Hoad, Anderson, Rosewall, Gimeno, MacKay, Segura, Cooper, Olmedo, Buchholz in it. Gonzalez won the Austrian Pro Indoor over another extremely strong field with Rosewall, Cooper, Olmedo, Segura, Buchholz, Hoad, MacKay, Ayala, Davies, Trabert, Anderson in it by defeating MacKay in the final easily. So Gonzalez for 1961 won the World Championship Tour over many powerful players. Won a Pro major in the US Pro. And he also won 4 other strong tournaments for that year.

    Rosewall in 1961 won three tournament out of 8 played that year. However the big kicker is that he won Wembley and the French Pro. The French Pro was won over Gonzalez in four sets in the final 2-6 6-4 6-3 8-6. Still it is an impressive victory by Rosewall it doesn't take away that Gonzalez did reach the final of the French Pro that year. The field was excellent at the French Pro that year with Anderson, MacKay, Buchholz, Trabert, Gimeno, Segura, Cooper and Segura among the players.

    So my summary of 1961 is this Gonzalez won one Pro Major and was in the finals of another. Gonzalez won the biggest one of them all in the World Championship Tour. Gonzalez also won four other extremely strong tournaments that year.

    Rosewall won two Pro Majors that year. One was over Gonzalez in the final of the French Pro. He won only one other tournament the whole year in the Adelaide South Australian Pro over a field with Buchholz, Sedgman, Rose, MacKay, Cooper, Trabert and Hoad.

    It seems to me that it's a no brainer that Gonzalez not only was 1961 World Champion but had the superior overall year by an easy margin.

    Gonzalez had his first retirement after the 1961 season and not surprisingly Rosewall became clear number one in 1962 and 1963.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2016
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  16. NatF

    NatF Talk Tennis Guru

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    I think Rosewall has a better claim to 1960 than 1961 as you say. I'll let someone else debate this with you if they choose, krosero has offered some good points on the 1960's tour in the past - although it's a clear victory for Gonzalez and impressive statement for his YE #1 credentials regardless.

    My initial post was mostly in jest, switching one contested Rosewall #1 year for another ;)
     
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  17. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    I think often we could joke about any discussion involving Rosewall nowadays. I may just do that at times.

    Rosewall being number two in some years isn't exactly the end of the world.
     
  18. NatF

    NatF Talk Tennis Guru

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    That would depend on who you ask ;) :D
     
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  19. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    Who would that be? I have no idea. Can you give me any clues? I had no idea Rosewall not being number one would start the apocalypse. ;)
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2016
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  20. 70sHollywood

    70sHollywood Semi-Pro

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    Regarding the h2h tours it is interesting that in 1950 and 1951 the PLTA did not rank Kramer number 1. He was not ranked at all in 1951.
     
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  21. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    A lot of it can be tennis politics or simply a lack of understanding. Kramer won the World Championship Tour over Segura that year 64 to 28 and he also won a powerful Round Robin tournament in Philadelphia with a 5-0 record over Gonzalez at 4-1, Segura at 3-2, Kovacs at 2-3 Van Horn at 1-4 and Riggs at 0-5. He defeated the second place Gonzalez in straight sets 6-4 6-3 and lost only one set in the tournament. It was stupid not to rank Kramer. Kramer played around 100 matches that year and was extremely strong.

    Kramer was clear World Champion in 1951.
     
  22. Dan Lobb

    Dan Lobb Hall of Fame

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    Because there was an absence of play between Kramer and the other pros, apart from Gonzales and Segura in the hth tours.
    But Philadelphia Indoor should have been the deciding event.
     
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  23. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    Gary, if you'd like to see more historical material I've gathered up a lot in recent weeks particularly with regard to the rankings that the Kramer Pros calculated, based on their system of points assigned to tournaments. As you might recall from some weeks ago I agreed with Urban that the pros had some time of rolling ranking system. I am not yet certain but they do not appear to be 52-week rankings (eg, July 1961 through June 1962) but rather were started from January 1 each year. But as I say, of that particular point, I am not yet certain; first thing I'd like to do is post the rankings as they were reported in the press (including World Tennis). I have reported rankings from 1962 (just one report for that year) through 1964-65 (I have many such reports from that span because naturally that's the one we've been debating).

    None of this information was published with anything like the frequency or detail that we have regarding today's rankings, so we are forced to enter into some detective work. And I have no point totals, only the system of points allocated for each tournament, as reported in the Buchholz article. But I think you'll find the historical material interesting, and I also have some long reports (similar to the Buchholz article) that I'm sure you'll like because they go into all topics about the pros. You're one of a small group here who definitely absorb every word of historical articles, even the most lengthy ones.

    McCauley, as BobbyOne said, made a distinction between tournaments of 8 men or more, and those with 8 or less. From Joe's book:

    Rosewall was determined not to be usurped just yet and once more finished at the top of the points table when the 1964 tournament circuit had been played. Both he and Laver won 7 tournaments each where the draws were of at least 8 players plus another 4 each in smaller events.​

    This division appears again in Laver's recent autobiography, where Laver says that in 1964 he and Ken "each won seven important pro titles."

    Buchholz himself does not state there was such a distinction among the tournaments, though I've noticed in my study of his article that he does not mention any of the known 4-man tournaments played throughout the year. He mentions a total of 17 tournaments, all of them 8-man events. He makes a passing reference to his playing some matches in Cairo and Beirut; we do know there was a four-man tournament in Cairo; but other than that none of the 4-man tournaments played throughout the year get a mention. He even says that Ayala "hasn't had a match victory in a tournament in two or three years," but for some reason he's not counting Ayala's winning of the 4-man tournament in La Baule (beating Hoad in the final).

    The exact list of which tournaments McCauley regards as the 14 big-draw events won by Laver and Rosewall is a matter of debate. For example McCauley has Laver and Rosewall each winning 11 total titles, but Joe himself lists only 10 for Rosewall: 10 conventionally defined tournaments. As PC1 pointed out in an old post of his, it's possible that Rosewall's 11th title is the Trofeo Facis: a series of "one-night stands" (ie, a h2h tour) that he won over several players. Another debatable detail is whether McCauley regarded Hannover (won by Rosewall) as an 8-man event; he lists only 6 men, but is that because those were the only results he could track down for that tournament, or is it because there really were only 6 men entered?

    You can see, and I'm sure you can appreciate, the difficulties involved in studying the old pro tour.

    More to come.
     
  24. Dan Lobb

    Dan Lobb Hall of Fame

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    The lack of detail for 1964 is rather shocking...we have much more complete and comprehensive details for the 1959 world tournament series, including a detailed list of final points standings.

    This suggests to me that the 1964 tour was less organized and formalized than in 1959, which is not surprising considering that there was no overall winner's money prize or an award for the tour of any kind in 1964.

    Further, it is clear from Buchholz' article that Rosewall controlled and managed all of the money, and made the arrangements for the tournaments through correspondence.
    Rosewall being a modest man, it seems in keeping that he would not arrange a grand awards ceremony at the end of the tour.
     
  25. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    PC1, I'm not sure how you're defining a world championship tour but Carlo certainly does mention it in the post that you replied to: he says that 17 tournaments were chosen by the pros to determine their rankings. He believed that such a tournament circuit was used, and so did Urban and JeffreyNeave, and BobbyOne. As Urban said recently, the debate a few years ago was about the exact number of tournaments that gave out ranking points (14? 17? 19?) Jeffrey believed it was 17 plus the 4-man Golden Racquet event as a special exception (perhaps because it was held at Wembley and was such a prominent event).

    Anyway after speaking with Buchholz recently you said that there was no championship tour in '64, which means that there was no division between tournaments that gave out ranking points and tournaments that did not. So I would have expected you to say that Carlo mentioned a championship tour in his post but that he was wrong in doing so, as you now know from talking to Buchholz. Instead you say that Carlo doesn't mention a championship tour at all, which is what I find confusing.

    I hope that there's been no misunderstanding in this long debate regarding what we all mean by "championship tour".

    I define a championship tour as a set of matches set aside as determining the year-end rankings. In the old H2H tours, the matches set aside for this purpose were all one-night stands. In 1964, as Carlo, Jeffrey, Urban and others said in older debates, it was conventional tournaments that were set aside for this purpose (the exact number of events being debated).

    How do you define a championship tour?
     
  26. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    By the way I wish posters would take a more relaxed attitude toward these things. Like I said, it's fun but not the end all. I'm sure 1960, 1961 and 1964 will continue to be debated by some posters. I do think it's hilarious how one article is being interpreted one way by some and another way by others and yes I know I'm one of the others. LOL. What's particular strange for me to see is when the author makes it clear when he means and yet there's still a battle on the meaning by some. Sometimes I think it's out of the Twilight Zone.
     
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  27. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    You know something. This is getting way out of hand. It's really silly. As NatF said in jest but I actually agree, it's been analyzed to death. I could discuss this more but it's boring to me after a while. I know if I discuss it, the cycle will continue ad nauseam.

    You can define it how you like.

    I think all of us should stop discussing 1964. What's the use of it? I'd rather see grass grow. They did have a great World's Fair that year in Flushing, NY.

    Edit-Krosero, in glancing over your post, you misinterpreted some of the things I wrote about Carlo's post and made some incorrect assumptions. Don't assume. Please.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2016
  28. Dan Lobb

    Dan Lobb Hall of Fame

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    As PC1 has said, it is not of great importance.
    For 1964, there was no formal prize or money prize or even an awards ceremony to mark the tour victory, assuming that there was even a formal tour winner.
    It was VERY casual that year in terms of organization...it looks like they tried to construct a formal tour, but that it did not quite come off in the end.

    1964 was not a red letter year for pro tennis, they had trouble getting decent venues to play, why, even the amateurs made much more money than the pros, and Emerson turned down an $80,000 pro offer from Laver and Rosewall, Emmo could make much more than the top pros by staying amateur.
     
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  29. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    Thank you Dan. :)

    Let's discuss non-1964 Tour tennis related themes. People are getting too upset, obsessive and angry. It's not worth it.
     
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  30. Dan Lobb

    Dan Lobb Hall of Fame

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    Yes, indeed, especially over a rather trifling matter, when it appears that the 1964 "tour" was rather a hodge-podge affair, no real formal championship at all.
     
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  31. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    This is my list of document rankings for the Kramer Pro group. In some cases I don't have a full list, so only one or a few names will appear. You'll see what I mean if you look at the source for the ranking: in each case I list the rankings, followed by the sources documenting them.

    RANKINGS AT YEAR-END 1962

    4. Buchholz

    St. Louis Post-Dispatch of April 27, 1965, just as the ’65 tournament tour was about to begin:

    The temperamental Gonzales, unbeatable on many days with his smashing service, finished third in the 1964 competition. Gimeno was fourth and Buchholz, who had been No. 4 in the two previous years, settled for fifth place.



    RANKINGS AT YEAR-END 1963

    1. Rosewall

    2. Laver

    3. Gimeno

    4. Buchholz

    The Daily Mail (Hagerstown, Maryland) of May 12, 1964, previewing the College Park tournament:

    Ken Rosewall, Rod Laver, Andres Gimeno and Earl Buchholz, ranked in that order among the world’s professional tennis players for 1963, were seeded in that sequence for the Indoor Championship.​

    The year-end 1963 rankings were determined directly by – that is, were equivalent to – the standings of the 1963 world championship tour. McCauley reports that the final standings on that tour (which ended in May 1963) were 1. Rosewall, 2. Laver, 3. Gimeno, 4. Buchholz, 5. MacKay, 6. Ayala



    RANKINGS AT AUGUST 25, 1964
    (at conclusion of Dutch Pro tournament at Noordwijk):


    1. Rosewall

    2. Gonzalez

    3. Laver

    4. Gimeno


    European Stars and Stripes on August 25, 1964:

    After the four-day tournament, which was attended by 3,000 fans Sunday, standings in the pro world championships are: 1. Rosewall, 2. Pancho Gonzalez, U.S.; 3. Laver, 4. Gimeno


    RANKINGS AT SEPTEMBER 20, 1964
    (at conclusion of Wembley Pro):


    1. Rosewall
    2. Laver

    Gerald Williams in The Daily Mail:

    ROD LAVER has two remaining ambitions now that he has conquered Ken Rosewall, five times winner, in the final of the London professional indoor championship.

    The first: To win the professionals’ own league, and be undisputed “best in the world.”

    The second: To play at Wimbledon again.​

    McCauley quoting Laver:

    "I‘ve still plenty of ambitions left and would like to be the World's No. 1. Despite this win, I am not that yet — Ken is. I may have beaten him more often than he has beaten me this year but he has won the biggest tournaments except here. I've lost to other people but Ken hasn't".​



    RANKINGS AT BEGINNING OF NOVEMBER 1964:

    1. Rosewall
    2. Laver
    3. Gonzalez and Gimeno (tied)
    5. Hoad
    6. Olmedo
    7. Buchholz and Haillet (tied)


    In the December 1964 issue of World Tennis, covering all events through the first days of November:

    The ranking of the Playing Pros, based on their performance through last month, is as follows:

    1. Ken Rosewall

    2. Rod Laver

    3. Pancho Gonzales and Andres Gimeno (jointly)

    5. Lew Hoad

    6. Alex Olmedo

    7. Butch Buchholz and Robert Haillet (jointly)​

    World Tennis in that same issue, in a photo caption:

    “Muscles” Rosewall still leads the pros in matches won, with Laver right behind him at No. 2. Ken has lost several big matches to Rod, but he has had fewer losses to the other pros.​

    Reuters on November 1, 1964:

    Rosewell [sic] Tops

    JOHANNESBURG—(Reuters)—Ken Rosewall retained his No. 1 position in world professional lawn tennis when he beat fellow-Australian Rod Laver, 6-4, 6-1, 6-4, in a special challenge match.​

    UPI on November 1, 1964:

    Rosewall Earns World Net Title

    JOHANNESBURG, South Africa—UPI—Ken Rosewall won the world professional tennis championship Challenge Match when he downed fellow countryman Rod Laver 6-4, 6-1, 6-4.

    Laver was strangely off form from the start to finish of the match. His backhand and his smashes were often mistimed, and in the final game he had three double faults.​

    Note: by this point (through October 1964), Rosewall still led Laver 10-9 in tournament victories. Officially ranked #1, he ended his season; the win in Johannesburg over Laver on Oct. 31 was his last match. He and Hoad both went home, in fact, and together they met with Emerson during the month of November, trying to sign him up as a new pro for the ’65 season.


    RANKINGS IN MID-NOVEMBER, 1964:

    1. Rosewall

    2. Laver

    3. Gimeno

    UPI report on November 18, 1964:

    Laver Takes Second in Pro Net Rankings

    NICE, France--UPI--Rod Laver of Australia finished in second place in the 1964 world professional tennis rankings when he beat Spain's Andres Gimeno 6-4, 6-3, in the final of the Nice Professional Tennis Tourney last night.

    Ken Rosewall finished the season in first place ahead of Laver and Gimeno is officially ranked third.​

    In the November 11, 1964 edition of Arabian Sun and Flare:

    The most highly touted of the visitors is 26-year-old Laver, who is challenging Ken Rosewall for the No. 1 spot in the professional tennis ranks.

    Laver is the first player since Donald Budge in 1938 to achieve the “grand slam,” the singles championships of Wimbledon, France, Australia, and the United States.

    The high mark in his career came this year when he scored a stunning five-set final round victory over Rosewall at Wembley, England, in a match experts rate as one of the greatest in tennis history.​
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2016
  32. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    RANKINGS AT YEAR-END 1964:

    Singles:

    1. Rosewall

    2. Laver

    3. Gonzalez

    4. Gimeno

    5. Buchholz

    6. Hoad

    7. Olmedo

    8. Ayala



    Doubles:

    2. Laver/Buchholz



    Buchholz in his World Tennis article:

    The Pro Rankings

    The pros operate on a point system. The winner gets 7 points, the runner-up 4, third place earns 3, fourth place 2, and the quarter-finalists 1. During the greater part of the tour, my point score was very low. Lew Hoad and Alex ("The Chief") were ahead of me most of the time. Then I earned 12 points in South Africa and jumped from No. 7 to No. 5. The final tour ratings were as follows:

    1. Ken Rosewall

    2. Rod Laver

    3. Pancho Gonzales

    4. Andres Gimeno

    5. Butch Buchholz

    6. Lew Hoad

    7. Alex Olmedo

    8. Luis Ayala​

    St. Louis Post-Dispatch of April 27, 1965, just as the ’65 tournament tour was about to begin:

    Laver Eyes Top Spot on Pro List

    By Harold Flachsbart

    Australia has the Davis Cup, emblematic of amateur tennis supremacy. Australia also is the home of the No. 1 and No. 2 professionals in the sport and the No. 2 pro has high hopes of becoming No. 1 in 1965.

    Ken Rosewall and Rod Laver, the top two play-for-pay players, visited St. Louis yesterday to do a little tub-thumping for the second annual St. Louis International professional tennis tournament at Triple A June 29 through July 5….

    The lefthanded Laver, who reached the No. 2 position in the list of touring players in just his second year as a professional, won three of six tournaments in Australia last winter and one in Oklahoma City last weekend.

    “I don’t know if I can beat Ken for the top spot,” Laver said, “but I’m sure going to give it a good try. At least I’m off to a good start and I’m looking forward to the series of eight or nine big tournaments we have scheduled in the United States.”

    … Neither Rosewall nor Laver is overlooking the powerful influence of Gonzales. The temperamental Gonzales, unbeatable on many days with his smashing service, finished third in the 1964 competition. Gimeno was fourth and Buchholz, who had been No. 4 in the two previous years, settled for fifth place.

    Gonzales won only one of the major ’64 American tourneys, Rosewall captured three and Laver two. Gonzales did better in the European phase of the tour.

    .... Buchholz, who teams with Laver in doubles and finished second in that department in 1964 competition, earned about $25,000 on the tour, not to mention royalties from shirt promotions and TV commercials.
    These rankings in singles are equivalent to those reported by Buchholz in his report of the 1964 tour.

    Sydney Morning Herald of January 24, 1965:

    The “Old Master,” Pancho Gonzales, produced some of the best tennis of his 15-year professional career to win the N.S.W. title at White City last night.

    Gonzales, 36, beat the current world champion, Ken Rosewall, in the final last night.

    The New York Times on April 29, 1965:

    Rosewall has dominated the pros since 1961, but Laver, who accomplished the grand slam as an amateur in 1962, is now challenging him for the leadership.​

    World Tennis in its June 1965 issue had a report by Mal Anderson of the US Pro Indoors in NYC (played April 26-May 2):

    Rod, who wound up a close No. 2 behind Ken in last year’s tour (Rocket was actually ahead in tournament victories but behind in tour matches), is a clear No. 1 this year on the basis of the first four months’ results. He has six tournament wins (four in Australia) as against two for Gonzales (one in Australia) and one for Rosewall (in Australia). Gonzales is now No. 2, Muscles No. 3 and Andres Gimeno No. 4....

    Pancho’s great triumph was on Saturday when he handled Muscles with the ease and grace of a Champion. He was relentless. He kept the pressure on throughout the match, and in the last game his serve was unreturnable.... The real difference, however, was in desire. Gonzales just wasn’t going to lose. Muscles was discouraged and depressed. He had no confidence in his ability to come in on his serve (basically, although he is the greatest volleyer in the game, he is a “baseliner”) and also no confidence in his forehand or serve. He double-faulted a lot and netted his forehands.

    The reason for Muscles’ depression goes back to Australia. Ken was not only the No. 1 man on the tour there but he also shouldered most of the responsibilities. He tried to do too much. He was treasurer, vice-president and director of the Association, and he had both to make decisions and to play his matches. When he wasn’t playing he was answering the phone; when the matches were over at night, he checked the tickets and counted the money. He was doing the work of two men and trying at the same time to maintain his position as world’s best player.


    RANKINGS AT BEGINNING OF MARCH 1965:

    1. Rosewall

    2. Laver


    World Tennis in its “Around the World” section, April 1965 issue:

    Rod Laver may usurp Ken Rosewall’s title of “King of the Pros.” At the end of the Australian season, Laver had won four consecutive tournaments, followed by Rosewall and Gonzales with one each. Rod took the pro titles in Adelaide, Perth, Melbourne and Hobart, although he barely managed to win the latter.​


    RANKINGS IN MID-APRIL, 1965:

    1. Rosewall

    2. Laver

    3. Gonzalez

    4. Gimeno


    Pacific Stars and Stripes on April 24, 1965:

    Ken Rosewall of Australia is seeded first for the National Professional Indoor Tennis Championships here April 28-May 2.

    Rod Laver, who is ranked second behind Rosewall in the professional world ratings, was seeded No. 2. Pancho Gonzales of the U.S. was seeded third and Andres Gimeno of Spain fourth.​


    RANKINGS AT END OF APRIL, 1965:

    1. Rosewall
    2. Laver
    3.
    4. Gimeno
    5.
    6. Olmedo


    Independent Press-Telegram (Long Beach, CA) of Sunday, May 2, 1965:

    Emcee for the afternoon will be personable Jack Kramer, who built his first club in Rolling Hills Estates.

    With pride he’ll introduce Rosewall, No. 1 ranking player in international professional tennis and winner of American, Australian, English and French championships.

    Laver ranks second, was second man in tennis history (after Don Budge) to win the Grand Slam of tennis, four championships in the same year.

    Buchholz was No. 1 man on America’s Davis Cup team before he turned pro at a mere 20 years of age.

    Olmedo, a Peruvian noted for his serve, ranks sixth in world pro ranks and was a member of the U.S. victorious Davis Cup team in 1958.

    Segura, most colorful player with his two-handed forehand, has won almost every major pro tourney and is a three-time winner of the U.S. Intercollegiate championships.

    Anderson almost beat Pancho Gonzales in his first pro play in 1959. Before then he won U.S. Amateur Nationals.

    Gimeno comes from Barcelona, climbed to fourth in pro standings with a ball to match Rod Laver’s for swiftness.

    Ayala had the longest record of Davis Cup wins, from 1952 through 1960.

    Davis, whose name in England was synonymous with the world’s top match, is the pride of Wales with cup-winning experience from 1952 to 1960.​
     
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  33. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    RANKINGS AT BEGINNING OF MAY, 1965:

    1. Laver

    2. Gonzalez

    3. Rosewall

    4. Gimeno


    World Tennis in its June 1965 issue had a report by Mal Anderson:

    Rod, who wound up a close No. 2 behind Ken in last year’s tour (Rocket was actually ahead in tournament victories but behind in tour matches), is a clear No. 1 this year on the basis of the first four months’ results. He has six tournament wins (four in Australia) as against two for Gonzales (one in Australia) and one for Rosewall (in Australia). Gonzales is now No. 2, Muscles No. 3 and Andres Gimeno No. 4.

    The San Bernardino County Sun of May 9, 1965:

    LOS ANGELES—Rod Laver, the rocket from Australia, has been top-seeded for the ninth annual Masters Round Robin Professional Tournament, May 17-24, at the Pan Pacific Tennis Stadium.

    Laver, a pro for only two years, won the honor for his record of four victories out of the six tournaments held this year. In his most recent triumph, Rod won the Indoor Championship in New York, defeating Pancho Gonzales in a straight-set final [on Sunday May 2].

    Gonzales, making a big comeback at 37, has been seeded second, with defending champion Ken Rosewall in the third spot.​

    Independent Press-Telegram (Long Beach, CA) of May 16, 1965:

    Laver is the hottest thing in tennis today, having won five of seven tournaments this year. Rosewall has been king of the pros the last three years and Gonzales for eight years before him.​

    A piece run during the ’65 LA Masters, Daily Independent Journal of May 18, 1965:

    Rosewall, third-seeded player for the tourney, is currently the world’s defending champion tennis pro.​

    Pacific Stars and Stripes of May 19, 1965:

    Laver Favored In Tourney

    LOS ANGELES (AP)—Top-seeded Rod Laver of Australia, winner of four out of six tournaments this year, is favored to add the Masters Round Robin to the roll when the professional tennis event gets under way here Monday night.

    Ken Rosewall is the defending champion, but rates no better than third in the ratings.​

    Denton Record-Chronicle of May 28, 1965:

    By the time the [‘63] tour hit the U.S., the guess was that Laver would be either in a sanitarium or have gone back to raising kangaroos.

    Rod Laver, instead, gradually became the world’s No. 2 player. This year, he should be No. 1. He trounced Gonzales in New York recently—not the feat it was 10 years ago but not a racket-spin, either.​

    The Fresno Bee The Republican of June 1, 1965:

    Laver Captures Peacock Gap Tennis Crown

    SAN RAFAEL—AP—Australia’s lefthanded Rod Laver, who quit the amateurs with no more fields to conquer, reigned today as king of the tennis pros.

    The redhead turned professional after a grand slam in 1962 and proved himself the best of the play for pay group again by humbling Richard Pancho Gonzales, 6-1, 6-4, for the championship of the Peacock Gap Tournament Monday.

    That made it six victories out of eight tournaments for Laver this season, including championships in all three of the United States stops to date – New York, Los Angeles and here…

    As the pros moved to Seattle, Wash., for their tourney starting tomorrow, the big question was whether the lethal Laver could be stopped.

    He collected the $3,000 top prize with seeming ease. His powerful passing shots, with zing belying his 155 pounds, vanquished the bigger but older Gonzales in 46 minutes….

    Still, the 26 year old Laver minimizes his 1965 performance, saying “I must be extremely fortunate to be in the position of winning six tournaments.”

    A year ago, Laver won two of the seven US events played in the worldwide tour.

    Currently he has won all three in this country after winning three of five in Australia.

    RANKINGS AT BEGINNING OF JULY, 1965:

    1. Laver

    2.


    World Tennis in its August 1965 issue (covering all events through early July):

    Rod the Rocket leads the professionals as the tour passes the half-way mark.​

    Allison Danzig in the New York Times of July 13, 1965, reporting on the Newport Pro final:

    The match between Laver and Rosewall, who had ruled the world’s leading professionals since 1961 until Laver went ahead of him this year, was a worthy finale to the round-robin tournament.​


    New York Times of July 19, 1965, reporting on the US Pro semis:

    The left-handed Australian, who is the defending champion and the world’s ranking professional, was in his most masterful form.​


    RANKINGS AT SEPTEMBER 4, 1965:

    1. Laver


    Daily Mirror of September 4, 1965:

    Laver New No 1

    THE world’s best men’s lawn tennis starts at the Empire Pool, Wembley, on Monday week when the London Indoor Professional Championships begin.

    And for the first time since 1960 there is a new No. 1 seed.

    He is Rod Laver, who was the second man ever to achieve the “grand slam” among the amateurs in 1962. Laver has replaced his fellow Australian, Ken Rosewall, in the No. 1 spot.

    Last year these two played one of the half-dozen greatest matches I have ever seen, with Laver winning 8-6 in the fifth set after having a net cord at thirty-all in the sixty-second game of the match.

    If they can produce a carbon copy of this one, then everyone is in for a real treat.

    Third seed is Andres Gimeno, one of those to spearhead Spain’s advance toward European lawn tennis supremacy and fourth is Earl Buchholz of the U.S.A.​


    RANKINGS AT SEPTEMBER 19, 1965
    (through Wembley Pro):


    1. Laver

    2. Rosewall

    3. Gonzalez

    4. Gimeno



    Daily Mail on September 19, 1965

    Laver backhand keeps him at the top

    By GERALD WILLIAMS

    ROD LAVER’S ₤1,000 singles victory over Andres Gimeno in the London professional indoor championship at Wembley confirms him as the finest lawn tennis player in the world.

    The professionals themselves rank him first, Rosewall second, Gonzales third and Gimeno fourth. And their list is compiled on a points system from tournament to tournament and not on personal opinion.



    The Indianapolis Star, November 7, 1965:

    Johannesburg, South Africa (UPI)—Rod Laver of Australia, the new World Professional Lawn Tennis champion, yesterday beat compatriot Ken Rosewall 7-9, 6-4, 6-2 in the final of the South African Tennis Tournament.​


    The Age, November 8, 1965:

    JOHANNESBURG, Nov. 7.

    Rod Laver, the current world professional tennis champion, beat fellow Australian Ken Rosewall, 7-9, 6-4, 6-2, 6-4, in their sponsored (₤A625) challenge match here yesterday.

    Rosewall was the former titleholder.—AAP.-Reuters.​

    World Tennis in its January 1966 issue had this piece by Buchholz:

    The Martini & Rossi Sportsmanship Award

    My Nomination: ROD LAVER

    The Rocket is my choice for the Sportsmanship Award.

    Here is a fellow who is basically a competitor, who would rather win than eat and whose financial standing depends upon victory. If all tennis players conducted themselves like Rocket, there would be no disputes with umpires, no moaning, no excuses, no racket-throwing and no suspensions for court deportment. It takes a champion to act like a champion.

    Laver turned pro after winning the Big Four. He then proceeded to get “murdered.” In his first 20 matches he won only one. Because he is a great competitor he refused to let that incredible series of losses depress him. At the start of the American phase of the tour, it looked as though he might not make the First Five (out of eight!). By the end of the year he was No. 2 in the Pro Rankings. This year he is No. 1.

    UPI report on December 26, 1965:

    Juan Gisbert of Spain won former world professional champion Ken Rosewall’s endorsement Saturday as the Spaniard’s number-two man behind Manuel Santana in Davis cup singles play against Australia which begins Monday.​
     
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  34. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    Dan, if you're interested, I've had a second look at the 1959 tournament points, and I have found a way to get my totals to line up almost exactly with the published totals. It involves dropping out the two four-man events at the beginning of December. Maybe I'll post it here, or in a thread related to '59.
     
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  35. Dan Lobb

    Dan Lobb Hall of Fame

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    Krosero, your list raises more questions than it answers.

    First, these are not official results, but rather individual opinions from newspaper interviews. What we need are official results issued by the tour management itself, not random recollections in off-the-cuff interviews.

    The 1963 World Pro Championship involved only TWO players, not a group of players...what is this list all about?

    The Nov. 11, 1964 report apparently contradicts the earlier report about the Nice tournament.

    Laver's own interview is strange, claiming that only Wembley was a big win for him, whereas he had already won the huge U.S. Pro event at Longwood...
     
  36. Dan Lobb

    Dan Lobb Hall of Fame

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    Do you mean dropping the four-man African tour?
     
  37. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    PC1, far from assuming, I re-read your post several times and considered it carefully but I was not able to clear up my confusion. I am hoping to get some details from you about your conversation with Buchholz. Your reference to Carlo not mentioning the championship tour at all is utterly confusing to me because I thought that you were saying since last month that your conversation with Buchholz revealed that there was no championship tour in '64: and that must mean that Carlo, Jeffrey, Urban, Bobby et all were all wrong in years past in their argument that there was a championship tour, made up of 17 tournaments (exact number being debated).

    But since you say that even Carlo, in his old posts, doesn't mention a championship tour at all, then of course I have to question whether your definition of a world championship is the same as mine. (And whether Buchholz has the same definition). Do you mean simply that Carlo didn't use the term "world championship"? Or do you define a world championship as a set of events that gives out ranking points, as I do?
     
  38. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    Oh my goodness. Please drop this. If I never hear about the 1964 Tennis Season again I will be happy.
     
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  39. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    Again, thanks Dan.

    Maybe we should discuss the mid 1950s for a change.
     
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  40. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    Incidentally being waterboarded is more fun than discussing the 1964 Tennis Season.
     
  41. Dan Lobb

    Dan Lobb Hall of Fame

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    If the 1964 was a well-defined world championship like the 1963 championship, there should be no question of Carlo finding the references...if he saw no world championship for 1964, what does that say about 1964? There was clearly only a hodge-podge of events for that year, and no formal title or award.
     
  42. 70sHollywood

    70sHollywood Semi-Pro

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    My point was that they obviously didn't care about the h2h tour.
     
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  43. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    That's the media in those days. It's clear Kramer was number one yet they didn't even rank him.
     
  44. Dan Lobb

    Dan Lobb Hall of Fame

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    Kramer actually struggled in major tournaments in the early fifties, his only significant win being at Philadelphia in 1951.
    You could see that reflected in this newspaper report.
     
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  45. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter G.O.A.T.

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    You explain that you define a championship tour as "a set of matches set aside as determining the year-end rankings." Please explain the basis for your definition? Was that the express understanding of the pro circuit? You then state that "Carlo, Jeffrey, Urban and others said in older debates, it was conventional tournaments that were set aside for this purpose (the exact number of events being debated)." It appears that you are implying that they all share your definition of championship tour? Is that what you intended to imply?

    PS: Are you still trying to argue that the 130 day tour of 1964 was intended to determine the year end rankings? If so, based on what?
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2016
  46. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter G.O.A.T.

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    This post is confusing. Perhaps it would help if your reports were in chronological order. More importantly, you don't state the basis for any of these putative rankings. Opinion rankings, especially of sports reporters and observers who may not even play the game, are of little value in my view. In fact, the only issue that really matters for the purposes of this thread is the actual data for each player to which objective analysis can be applied.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2016
  47. Gary Duane

    Gary Duane Legend

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    I would definitely find the historical articles interesting. I'm interested in facts and information.
    Again, it would be interesting to see these 17 tournaments listed with results, but surely impossible.
    That's part of the frustration, trying to figure out which tournaments are being counted for ranking.
    Clear as mud. :(
    Absolutely.

    There is one huge problem I see: in general there seems to be prejudice in ranking the player higher who has previously been winning and already has an established rep for being #1. Through 1963 that would have been Rosewall, so I do see perhaps a bit of learning towards Rosewall and against Laver. Later this would reverse.

    Today recency bias is negated by a point system. People this year can talk all they wish about someone other than Djokovic being #1, but they won't get anywhere.

    However, look at 2013. There you see Djokovic rated #1 by the ITF in direct contradiction of points and ranking from the ATP.
     
  48. Gary Duane

    Gary Duane Legend

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    That's what I have been saying all along. Complete agreement on this point.
     
  49. Gary Duane

    Gary Duane Legend

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    So true, but mostly because the majority of posts make claims without any additional facts.
     
  50. Gary Duane

    Gary Duane Legend

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    Is 1965 correct? It appears that 1965 suddenly comes out of nowhere in 1964
     
  51. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne G.O.A.T.

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    NatF, I think that Rosewall has a better claim in 1961 than in 1960 as he did not lose to Gonzalez in a world tour and as he did beat Pancho directly (and indirectly respectively) in the two big tournaments.
     
  52. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne G.O.A.T.

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    krosero, Welcome back after a while.

    I think that both Joe McCauley and Rod Laver erred when saying that both Rosewall and Laver won 7 big tournaments. In fact Laver won only 6 of them (see the McCauley results). Port Elizabeth was not a big event.

    I'm quite sure that Hannover was an 8-man tournament and one of the ( most probably) 18 tournaments that counted to the pro rankings of 1964.
     

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