Worst slam final performances in the Open Era

Northern

Hall of Fame
Based on @paranoidandroid's thread Worst slam finalist of all time?

I guess it's only fair to look at an alternate approach: What is the worst slam final performance of the open era?

1. 1974 US Open: Connors def. Rosewall 6-1 6-0 6-1
2. 1977 French Open: Vilas def. Gottried 6-0 6-3 6-0
3. 2008 French Open: Nadal def. Federer 6-1 6-3 6-0
4. 1984 Wimbledon: McEnroe def. Connors 6-1 6-1 6-2
5. 1978 French Open: Borg def. Vilas 6-1 6-1 6-3

The 1977 and 1978 RG finals make the Top 5, with Gottfried getting revenge through Borg the following year for the beatdown he received in the '77 final.
 
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Based on @paranoidandroid's thread Worst slam finalist of all time?

I guess it's only fair to look at an alternate approach: What is the worst slam final performance of the open era?

1. 1974 US Open: Connors def. Rosewall 6-1 6-0 6-1
2. 1977 French Open: Vilas def. Gottried 6-0 6-3 6-0
3. 2008 French Open: Nadal def. Federer 6-1 6-3 6-0
4. 1984 Wimbledon: McEnroe def. Connors 6-1 6-1 6-2
5. 1978 French Open: Borg def. Vilas 6-1 6-1 6-3

The 1977 and 1978 RG finals make the Top 5, with Gottfried getting revenge through Borg the following year for the beatdown he received in the '77 final.
If we are only going by games won, the exercise is pretty easy. However we have to factor in the level of the opponent as well. In your list above Rosewall, Federer, Connors and Vilas were facing ATGs or even GOAT candidates in their absolute peak so the low score is somehow excusable. I think keeping this in mind you could make a case for Rios. Going down to a relative no name like Korda 2-6, 2-6, 2-6 is even worse in my opinion then winning one or two games less against Borg or Nadal on clay.
 

Northern

Hall of Fame
If we are only going by games won, the exercise is pretty easy. However we have to factor in the level of the opponent as well. In your list above Rosewall, Federer, Connors and Vilas were facing ATGs or even GOAT candidates in their absolute peak so the low score is somehow excusable. I think keeping this in mind you could make a case for Rios. Going down to a relative no name like Korda 2-6, 2-6, 2-6 is even worse in my opinion then winning one or two games less against Borg or Nadal on clay.
That is very true. There is no shame in being destroyed at RG by either Nadal or Borg, the surface co-GOATs. It is apparent multiple parameters need to be appraised in order to reach a reasonable conclusion.
 
That is very true. There is no shame in being destroyed at RG by either Nadal or Borg, the surface co-GOATs. It is apparent multiple parameters need to be appraised in order to reach a reasonable conclusion.
Maybe another point to consider is that is always easier to reach a close score (even if you have no chance of winning) on fast surfaces like grass as you at least should be able to hold serve a couple of times (more aces fewer breaks on grass). On clay where the effect of the serve is reduced being destroyed becomes more likely (no coincidence that three out of five on the initial list were on clay). This would make Connors loss against Mac even more devastating but then again he never was a good server.
 

Mustard

Bionic Poster
Have any of you watched the Borg vs. Vilas 1978 French Open final? The rallies were very competitive, including the famous 86-stroke rally. The scoreline may have been 6-1, 6-1, 6-3 to Borg, but don't mistake that as easy in terms of physicality. They went toe-to-toe in baseline grinding, and Borg won. Vilas was facing an opponent that could do everything slightly better than he.

To answer the question, it has to be Natasha Zvereva in the 1988 French Open final. Steffi Graf beat her 6-0, 6-0 in about 28 minutes.
 

Mustard

Bionic Poster
If we are only going by games won, the exercise is pretty easy. However we have to factor in the level of the opponent as well. In your list above Rosewall, Federer, Connors and Vilas were facing ATGs or even GOAT candidates in their absolute peak so the low score is somehow excusable. I think keeping this in mind you could make a case for Rios. Going down to a relative no name like Korda 2-6, 2-6, 2-6 is even worse in my opinion then winning one or two games less against Borg or Nadal on clay.

Korda beat overwhelming tournament favourite Sampras in a fifth set tiebreak match at the 1997 US Open. In those months after winning the 1998 Australian Open, Korda was 1 match away from becoming world number 1 on several occasions, but never managed it.
 

Northern

Hall of Fame
Have any of you watched the Borg vs. Vilas 1978 French Open final? The rallies were very competitive, including the famous 86-stroke rally. The scoreline may have been 6-1, 6-1, 6-3 to Borg, but don't mistake that as easy in terms of physicality. They went toe-to-toe in baseline grinding, and Borg won. Vilas was facing an opponent that could do everything slightly better than he.

To answer the question, it has to be Natasha Zvereva in the 1988 French Open final. Steffi Graf beat her 6-0, 6-0 in about 28 minutes.
Good point. No, I have never watched that as I wasn't even born. How do you watch matches that old?

The list is only based on scores.
 

murphywmm

New User
Kevin Anderson was pathetic against Nadal at the US Open final last year, even if he managed to win 10 games.

Other stinkers:

2003 French Open: Ferrero def Verkerk 6-1 6-3 6-2

2002 Wimbledon: Hewitt def Nalbandian 6-1 6-3 6-2 - I hate this one the most as Nalbandian would go on to have a great career but he never made another Slam final. He was really nervous that day and I think if this had been played a few years later, he'd have thrashed the obnoxious Australian pusher with ease.
 
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Mustard

Bionic Poster
Good point. No, I have never watched that as I wasn't even born. How do you watch matches that old?

I was born in 1983, yet I have many old matches, even going back to the late 1960s. Use your imagination. Go searching the internet. If you're that determined to watch old matches, you'll find many of them and will be able to buy many of them. It's not as easy to do in 2018 as 5-10 years ago, though. The copyright killjoys who would keep every past tennis match locked in a vault, where nobody can see them, are never too far away.

If you like matches with long grinding rallies, the 1978 French Open final between Borg and Vilas is as good as it gets for the era.
 
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Northern

Hall of Fame
I was born in 1983, yet I have many old matches, even going back to the late 1960s. Use your imagination. Go searching the internet. If you're that determined to watch old matches, you'll find many of them and will be able to buy many of them. It's not as easy to do in 2018 as 5-10 years ago, though. The copyright killjoys who would keep every past tennis match locked in a vault, where nobody can see them, are never too far away.

If you like matches with long grinding rallies, the 1978 French Open final between Borg and Vilas is as good as it gets for the era.
I looked in Youtube and there isn't much. Do you find torrents?

How about even older matches, 60s and 50s, is there any full match available from that era? I'm going to guess no, since they probably had to use film back then.
 

abmk

Bionic Poster
If you like matches with long grinding rallies, the 1978 French Open final between Borg and Vilas is as good as it gets for the era.

sleep.jpg
 
Korda beat overwhelming tournament favourite Sampras in a fifth set tiebreak match at the 1997 US Open. In those months after winning the 1998 Australian Open, Korda was 1 match away from becoming world number 1 on several occasions, but never managed it.
This is why I wrote relatively no name. Of course he was a great player, also reached the RG final in 1992. However, he cannot be compared to Borg in 78, Nadal 2008 or Mac 1984.
 

roundiesee

Hall of Fame
Have any of you watched the Borg vs. Vilas 1978 French Open final? The rallies were very competitive, including the famous 86-stroke rally. The scoreline may have been 6-1, 6-1, 6-3 to Borg, but don't mistake that as easy in terms of physicality. They went toe-to-toe in baseline grinding, and Borg won. Vilas was facing an opponent that could do everything slightly better than he.

To answer the question, it has to be Natasha Zvereva in the 1988 French Open final. Steffi Graf beat her 6-0, 6-0 in about 28 minutes.
Good call, poor Natasha had the worst beating ever. :(
 
Korda beat overwhelming tournament favourite Sampras in a fifth set tiebreak match at the 1997 US Open. In those months after winning the 1998 Australian Open, Korda was 1 match away from becoming world number 1 on several occasions, but never managed it.
Weak era.
 

Mainad

Bionic Poster
Posted this in the other thread. Might be even more appropriate here:

From the point of view of games won I would say:

Men:

1974 US Open, Ken Rosewall. He managed only 2 games against Jimmy Connors. I think that's the lowest number of games won by any male Slam finalist in the Open Era.

Women:

1988 French Open, Natalia Zvereva. She is the only one in the Open Era to suffer the ultimate humiliation of a double bagel when she lost to Steffi Graf.
 
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