Who's the best one-slam wonder? - TennisForum.com
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post #1 of 127 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2007, 08:11 PM Thread Starter
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Who's the best one-slam wonder?

Here are the candidates that I can muster from the top of my head. I can only go back to c1980. Please do remind me if I've missed someone:

Kim Clijsters
Svetlana Kuznetsova
Anastasia Myskina
Amelie Mauresmo*
Gabriela Sabatini
Iva Majoli
Jana Novotna
Conchita Martinez

*Highly controversial, as nobody else deserved the Australian Open of 2006 more than she did. But to be honest, I'd rather forget that tournament ever happened than include a slam amongst her tally during which she came past two of the elite players of the decade, who would both have been slim favourites to beat her, due to retirements. It wasn't Amelie's fault, but unfortunately she left that tournament unproven, in my opinion, and that result is null and void.

From that list, I think we can eliminate Myskina and Kuznetsova straight away. Both haven't won a great deal since (although Sveta won Miami last year), and hadn't been prolific tournament winners prior. Next, we can also get rid of Majoli. She had greater longevity than the aforementioned two, but her other feats were not outstanding when compared with the remaining players.

So we're left with:

Kim Clijsters
Amelie Mauresmo*
Gabriela Sabatini
Jana Novotna
Conchita Martinez

This is where it gets more tricky.

Martinez, let's not forget, would have reached no.1 in the world in 1995 had the ranking system been calculated as it has been since 1996. During that season, she won six tier 2 or above titles. During her career, she also scored wins over all the great players of her heyday: Graf, Seles, Sanchez-Vicario, Novotna, Sabatini, Pierce, Navratilova, Hingis. And, of course, she has more career match wins -- far more! -- than any of the players in question, with around 730. Her nearest challenger in that respect is Sabatini with around one hundred fewer; only Evert, Navratilova, Graf, Wade and Sanchez-Vicario have won more. Martinez has greater longevity than any of the other players in terms of her span of wins over top ten players (1988-2005).

Jana Novotna was a Masters winner, Wimbledon champion and twice runner-up, defeating Graf, Seles, Sanchez-Vicario, Pierce, Sabatini, Navratilova, Hingis and Venus on more notable occasions than many of Martinez's victories. She also reached number two in the world, and after her Wimbledon triumph, was within only one hair's breadth of taking the number one spot in 1998.

Amelie Mauresmo has been a player capable of defeating any opponent for almost a decade now, ever since her run to the Berlin final as an 18 year-old in 1998. She has as many titles, or thereabouts, as Novotna, as well as wins over all of the top players of her day. She has won Wimbledon as well as the Masters, and numerous tier 1 victories.

However...I have written those eulogies in acknowledgement, because I believe the greatest competition is between Clijsters and Sabatini.

Clijsters vs Sabatini

Longevity - Sabatini, easily. Her first slam semi-final came in 1985, her last over a decade later in 1995 - and she retired at 26! Clijsters' first tier 2 or above victory was at the end of 2000, her last will be in 2007. Sabatini's last tier 2 tournament victory was in 1995 while her first, at a guess, would have been in 1986.

Career match wins - Again, this is an area in which Sabatini wins easily. She won well over 600, while Kim is unlikely to reach above 450 by the end of the year.

Career titles - Clijsters wins handsomely, although a number of her titles have been below tier 2. Around 5 or 6 have been tier 3. Having said that, without checking the ITF database, some of Sabatini's earlier titles may also have been lower grade.

Major achievements outside the slams - Unfortunately I don't have the stats, but (and a lot of people don't know this) Sabatini scored more wins over Graf during her career than any other player, including Seles. At one stage she really had Graf's number. Sabatini was also a four-time winner of the Italian Open, twice winner of the Masters and multiple Miami winner. Sabatini really was the player who could tear apart Graf and Seles' hegemony when she was playing her best tennis. In 1991, she defeated Graf and Seles in just one month (world no.'s 1&2), and had she won the French Open, would have been anointed world no.1.

Clijsters was very similar to Sabatini in that she was a thorn in the side to all of the great players, and one of the few who presented a real challenge to the Williams sisters during their brief stranglehold of the game. She was also twice a Masters winner, winner of Toronto, twice Indian Wells champion, Italian Open winner and Miami champion. And, of course, unlike Sabatini, she reached no.1 in the world, although it may be that Sabatini also would have achieved that feat in mid-1991 had the ranking system been then as it is now.

Grandslam success -- Clijsters can't be denied this one, although Sabatini was in far more slam semi-finals (something like 18!), compared to Clijsters' 12. However, the results that count are decisively in Kim's favour. She has won a slam and been 4 times a finalist, while Sabatini played just 3 slam finals, winning 1, during her entire career.

Wins over great players -- I'd say both are fairly even in this respect. Sabatini defeated Evert, Navratilova, Graf, Seles, Sanchez-Vicario, Novotna, Martinez, Capriati. Kim bested the likes of Hingis, Davenport, Venus, Serena, Capriati, Henin, Mauresmo, Sharapova.

I'll leave the conclusion to others
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post #2 of 127 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2007, 08:23 PM
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Re: Who's the best one-slam wonder?

Bit too early too say for some of them you listed.
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post #3 of 127 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2007, 08:26 PM
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Re: Who's the best one-slam wonder?

Mauresmo is not a one slam wonder, regardless of how she won the tournament.

My vote goes to Sabatini

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post #4 of 127 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2007, 08:26 PM
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Re: Who's the best one-slam wonder?

I think Martinez is the best and Sabatini the 2nd best.
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post #5 of 127 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2007, 08:30 PM
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Re: Who's the best one-slam wonder?

Myskina is my favourite

Also, I understand what you're saying about Mauresmo, but she has two Slams, it doesn't matter that she won one in bizarre circumstances, so I don't think she should be included in the discussion...

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post #6 of 127 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2007, 08:31 PM
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Re: Who's the best one-slam wonder?

To be honest I think you've quantified it TOO much....I think it is between Clijsters and Sabatini, but it is down to personal opinion and likes and dislikes for than their stats imo.
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post #7 of 127 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2007, 08:36 PM
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Re: Who's the best one-slam wonder?

i pick kim, she's made numerous slam finals and semi-finals... despite being a 'one-slam wonder' its no wondering that she's a great player and champion.
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post #8 of 127 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2007, 08:39 PM
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Re: Who's the best one-slam wonder?

Gaby's the best of the lot. And Amelie is not a one-slam wonder.

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post #9 of 127 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2007, 08:43 PM
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Re: Who's the best one-slam wonder?

I pick Sabatini. Mauresmo has 2 slams,no matter how she won the first one. Also,it's a bit odd when you include Kuznetsova because she's still so young in her career. She's made the French Open Finals since and she's too good to not win another slam.
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post #10 of 127 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2007, 08:47 PM
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Re: Who's the best one-slam wonder?

clijsters is the best in that category

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post #11 of 127 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2007, 08:50 PM
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Re: Who's the best one-slam wonder?

Amélie Mauresmo is NOT a one-slam wonder.

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19. In the period from January to April 2006 Dr. Skalny sent very detailed messages to Ms Sharapova [...]: “Mildronate 1-2 X 10, repeat in 2 wks (before training or competition)”; “1 hr before competition, 2 pills of Mildronate”; “During games of special importance, you can increase your Mildronate dose to 3-4 pills (1 hr before the match). However, it is necessary to consult me on all these matters (please call)”; “30 minutes prior to a training session: Mildronat – 1 Capsule. 30-45 minutes prior to a tournament Mildronat 2 capsules”.
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post #12 of 127 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2007, 08:51 PM
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Re: Who's the best one-slam wonder?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steffica Greles View Post
Highly controversial, as nobody else deserved the Australian Open of 2006 more than she did. But to be honest, I'd rather forget that tournament ever happened than include a slam amongst her tally during which she came past two of the elite players of the decade, who would both have been slim favourites to beat her, due to retirements. It wasn't Amelie's fault, but unfortunately she left that tournament unproven, in my opinion, and that result is null and void.
Considering Mauresmo beat Clijsters & Henin twice each since then...with no other losses to Clijsters, I don't see how you can come to that conclusion. She had the Henin match well in hand and looked to be the slightly better player than Clijsters in the semis too. Retirements be damned, she won that slam!

Sabatini gets my vote.
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post #13 of 127 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2007, 08:57 PM
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Re: Who's the best one-slam wonder?

Clijsters
Martinez
Sabatini

in that order.
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post #14 of 127 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2007, 08:59 PM
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Re: Who's the best one-slam wonder?

My personal favorite is the lovely Conchita. But the best on the list is Kim, it's not an issue. Unlike those other girls, she was no. 1 in the world. She has one or two YEC titles, loads of other slam finals, was no. 1 in doubles (I think), won a couple of doubles majors. There's no denying Kim is the best of that list.

I don't consider Amelie a one-slam wonder. She might be the bottom of the two-slam wonders, but two is two. Plus, she's been no. 1 and won YEC, so it's not like she's really a "wonder" of any of the categories.

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post #15 of 127 (permalink) Old Apr 24th, 2007, 09:03 PM
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Re: Who's the best one-slam wonder?

ok that's not cool to put Amelie on that list of one slam wonders, because the FACT is, she is NOT, so please take her out, it's insulting to her and her fans, and your so call "analysis" of her "higly controversial" grand slam is total BS!
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