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View Full Version : Who would you rather be: A Mandlikova-type or a Williams-type


bandabou
Jul 7th, 2005, 10:48 AM
You always hear commentators say such and such player was sooo talented, sooo much better than others who actually were winning the titles.

For instance: Mandlikova, Sabatini...they all supposedly were more talented than the Graf's, the Navratilova's of this world, and today it seems everybody is more talented than a Williams sister.

Brings the question: What is all that talent if you can't win when it matters?

ceiling_fan
Jul 7th, 2005, 10:49 AM
i'd rather be a winner

faithtrueman
Jul 7th, 2005, 01:54 PM
some players are technically superior to others….some players are more naturally gifted than others and make everything look so effortlessly...but lack the vital cog in their armour that makes them a champion......
…...don’t mean they always come out on top though……i guess thats why we have so many underachievers in sport….its the same for the players who work so hard yet achieve so little in the sport too…..at the end of the day results usually speak for themselves....

Sam L
Jul 7th, 2005, 02:00 PM
Definitely Williams.

Problem is some tennis purists think that only if you employ all the tennis skills in the tennis Bible are you a complete, talented player.

I disagree. Of course, it's winning that counts and that means X factors.

Cybelle Darkholme
Jul 7th, 2005, 02:15 PM
What gets me is that everyone says that tennis is 90 percent mental and then they go on and on about so and so being technically superior and perfect strokes and blah blah blah...

If tennis is 90% intangibles then your perfect strokes mean nothing! Also just because your strokes are Non traditional doesnt mean they are bad as Venus just proved. She hasnt changed her game she regained her belief and got fit.

If you have the mental game then you do not need perfect text book strokes.

You can go to a local club and see text book strokes but those people arent on tour or winning titles or slams are they?

deja_entendu
Jul 7th, 2005, 02:40 PM
You always hear commentators say such and such player was sooo talented, sooo much better than others who actually were winning the titles.

For instance: Mandlikova, Sabatini...they all supposedly were more talented than the Graf's, the Navratilova's of this world, and today it seems everybody is more talented than a Williams sister.

Brings the question: What is all that talent if you can't win when it matters?

You're so full of shit, instead of making sweeping generalizations, actually have quotes and proof, until then few will think that commentators actually say "Mandlikova was sooo much better than Graf" or anything remotely like that with any player who doesn't have the titles, and most will think you're :retard:

Capster
Jul 7th, 2005, 03:00 PM
I want to be talented and a winner

Kart
Jul 7th, 2005, 03:05 PM
You always hear commentators say such and such player was sooo talented, sooo much better than others who actually were winning the titles.

For instance: Mandlikova, Sabatini...they all supposedly were more talented than the Graf's, the Navratilova's of this world, and today it seems everybody is more talented than a Williams sister.

Brings the question: What is all that talent if you can't win when it matters?

Actually it brings the question of whether some people will ever be satisfied - even when their favourites are winning :rolleyes:.

It may have escaped your notice but Sabatini and Mandlikova were both grand slam (and other big title) winners - so both have won when it mattered.

Instead if trying to claim all the praise for your favourites why not let people admire whoever they want to ?

Williams sisters, Graf and Navratilova have more than enough trophies to rejoice in yet you're still complaining.

Volcana
Jul 7th, 2005, 03:29 PM
a) I think anyone suggesting Mandlikova or Sabatini had more tennis talent than Navratilova or Graf is insane.

b) Mandlikova is a NOT an example of a 'talented' player who didn't win. She played slams from 1980 to 1990. Of the 44 slams in that period, In that period, Evert won 10, Navratilova 16, and Graf 9. That's 35. Of the 9 remaining, Mandlikova won 4. That's not exactly underachieving! She had the misfortune to spend her entire career playing against three of the five players in the history of the sport.

Sabatini, OTOH, was a player comparable to Mauresmo today. Able to beat anybody, except when it counted most.

c) You don't hear much commentary saying how other players are more 'talented' than Venus or Serena anymore. True, the word 'talent' is more often applied to lesser players, but to a great extent, it's used in place of 'potential'. Remember how 'talented' Daniela Hantuchova was supposed to be? But ultimately, her game is a lesser version of Lindsay Davenport. (Much lesser, but I am comparing Dani to the world #1.)

d) I think it was Goran Ivanisevic who said the most talented player was the one who recieved a fault serve and sliced a drop shot with it so it just clears the net, then skips sideways to the ballboy, who never has to move.

e) 'Talent' is only talent if it's usable against the Williams' and Davenport's and Sharapova's and Dementieva's of the world. Hingis was a vastly talented player. But she won her last slam in 1999, and it wasn't because of her feet. (not 'sole'-ly anyway :)) The speed and power of the game swamped her talent. It doesn't swamp Justine Henin-Hardenne's talent. Hingis didn't have talent that could execute when every shot coming at was 100 mph and near the opposite sideline.

In today's environment, against today's top players, who demonstrates more talent than Venus or Serena? Henin-Hardenne. Mauresmo. That's about it. Throw in Martinez and Schnyder if you're talking strictly about shotmaking when they're playing their best.

Think about the Wimbledon commetary. It was Venus who was siad to have more variety in her game than Pierce or Sharapova. It was Venus who the long rallies was said to favor vs Davenport.

Was it Mary Carillo who spent all winter saying Sharapova was more talented than Serena, even though Serena beat her at OZ? Notice how we didn't hear that comparison between Sharapova and Venus? Or Sharapova and Davenport? That isn't because people don't want to say it. It's because it sounds stupid.

Yet in 2002, people were talking about Serena maybe being the best 'most talented' player ever.

When you read through the threads about 'talent', you notice that every single time, people fall back on, 'that's just my opinion'. They avoid objective measures of talent, because it's pretty difficult to say a less successful player is 'talented', and a more successful player is not. (Unless you're dealing with the obvious mental fragility of Mauresmo or Schnyder.)

The objectives measure of talent are, a) what CAN you do during a match against the world's best? and b) do you win vs the world's best?

What shows talent is ....

a) What shots do you have?

b) What shots can you execute under pressure?

If a) and b) are equal, it comes down to who's faster and stronger. (Like virtuall every other sport.)

RenaSlam.
Jul 7th, 2005, 03:32 PM
a) I think anyone suggesting Mandlikova or Sabatini had more tennis talent than Navratilova or Graf is insane.

b) Mandlikova is a NOT an example of a 'talented' player who didn't win. She played slams from 1980 to 1990. Of the 44 slams in that period, In that period, Evert won 10, Navratilova 16, and Graf 9. That's 35. Of the 9 remaining, Mandlikova won 4. That's not exactly underachieving! She had the misfortune to spend her entire career playing against three of the five players in the history of the sport.

Sabatini, OTOH, was a player comparable to Mauresmo today. Able to beat anybody, except when it counted most.

c) You don't hear much commentary saying how other players are more 'talented' than Venus or Serena anymore. True, the word 'talent' is more often applied to lesser players, but to a great extent, it's used in place of 'potential'. Remember how 'talented' Daniela Hantuchova was supposed to be? But ultimately, her game is a lesser version of Lindsay Davenport. (Much lesser, but I am comparing Dani to the world #1.)

d) I think it was Goran Ivanisevic who said the most talented player was the one who recieved a fault serve and sliced a drop shot with it so it just clears the net, then skips sideways to the ballboy, who never has to move.

e) 'Talent' is only talent if it's usable against the Williams' and Davenport's and Sharapova's and Dementieva's of the world. Hingis was a vastly talented player. But she won her last slam in 1999, and it wasn't because of her feet. (not 'sole'-ly anyway :)) The speed and power of the game swamped her talent. It doesn't swamp Justine Henin-Hardenne's talent. Hingis didn't have talent that could execute when every shot coming at was 100 mph and near the opposite sideline.

In today's environment, against today's top players, who demonstrates more talent than Venus or Serena? Henin-Hardenne. Mauresmo. That's about it. Throw in Martinez and Schnyder if you're talking strictly about shotmaking when they're playing their best.

Think about the Wimbledon commetary. It was Venus who was siad to have more variety in her game than Pierce or Sharapova. It was Venus who the long rallies was said to favor vs Davenport.

Was it Mary Carillo who spent all winter saying Sharapova was more talented than Serena, even though Serena beat her at OZ? Notice how we didn't hear that comparison between Sharapova and Venus? Or Sharapova and Davenport? That isn't because people don't want to say it. It's because it sounds stupid.

When you read through the threads about 'talent', you notice that every single time, people fall back on, 'that's just my opinion'. They avoid objective measures of talent, because it's pretty difficult to say a less successful player is 'talented', and a more successful player is not. (Unless you're dealing with the obvious mental fragility of Mauresmo or Schnyder.)

The objectives measure of talent are, a) what CAN you do during a match against the world's best? and b) do you win vs the world's best?

What shows talent is ....

a) What shots do you have?

b) What shots can you execute under pressure?

If a) and b) are equal, it comes down to who's faster and stronger.

Great post. :worship: :worship: :worship:

tennisbum79
Jul 7th, 2005, 04:03 PM
You always hear commentators say such and such player was sooo talented, sooo much better than others who actually were winning the titles.

For instance: Mandlikova, Sabatini...they all supposedly were more talented than the Graf's, the Navratilova's of this world, and today it seems everybody is more talented than a Williams sister.

Brings the question: What is all that talent if you can't win when it matters?




I beg to differ on your premise. What I heard most often about the Williams sisters is that they have dormant enormous talents, and they need a technical coach (e.g. JMac) to exploit that talent and put it to use.

Remember how the tennis press used to use the word scary when pondering about the WS future. They were alluding to the fact if they were winning this much already; think how scary it would be after they are totally developed as players, using their full potentials (read unexploited talents)

deja_entendu
Jul 7th, 2005, 04:10 PM
e) 'Talent' is only talent if it's usable against the Williams' and Davenport's and Sharapova's and Dementieva's of the world. Hingis was a vastly talented player. But she won her last slam in 1999, and it wasn't because of her feet. (not 'sole'-ly anyway :)) The speed and power of the game swamped her talent. It doesn't swamp Justine Henin-Hardenne's talent. Hingis didn't have talent that could execute when every shot coming at was 100 mph and near the opposite sideline.


You must not be watching the sport of tennis if you think that anyone was hitting anything at Martina at 100 mph, first serves being the exception. And a series of injuries, lack of fitness, and mental weakness swamped Hingis' game, but the notion that she was 'overpowered' out of Grand Slam titles is ridiculous. She choked away amazing opportunities in 3 of her last 5 slam finals that had nothing at all to do with the power of her opponent.

tennisbum79
Jul 7th, 2005, 04:29 PM
a) I think anyone suggesting Mandlikova or Sabatini had more tennis talent than Navratilova or Graf is insane.

b) Mandlikova is a NOT an example of a 'talented' player who didn't win. She played slams from 1980 to 1990. Of the 44 slams in that period, In that period, Evert won 10, Navratilova 16, and Graf 9. That's 35. Of the 9 remaining, Mandlikova won 4. That's not exactly underachieving! She had the misfortune to spend her entire career playing against three of the five players in the history of the sport.

Sabatini, OTOH, was a player comparable to Mauresmo today. Able to beat anybody, except when it counted most.

c) You don't hear much commentary saying how other players are more 'talented' than Venus or Serena anymore. True, the word 'talent' is more often applied to lesser players, but to a great extent, it's used in place of 'potential'. Remember how 'talented' Daniela Hantuchova was supposed to be? But ultimately, her game is a lesser version of Lindsay Davenport. (Much lesser, but I am comparing Dani to the world #1.)

d) I think it was Goran Ivanisevic who said the most talented player was the one who recieved a fault serve and sliced a drop shot with it so it just clears the net, then skips sideways to the ballboy, who never has to move.

e) 'Talent' is only talent if it's usable against the Williams' and Davenport's and Sharapova's and Dementieva's of the world. Hingis was a vastly talented player. But she won her last slam in 1999, and it wasn't because of her feet. (not 'sole'-ly anyway :)) The speed and power of the game swamped her talent. It doesn't swamp Justine Henin-Hardenne's talent. Hingis didn't have talent that could execute when every shot coming at was 100 mph and near the opposite sideline.

In today's environment, against today's top players, who demonstrates more talent than Venus or Serena? Henin-Hardenne. Mauresmo. That's about it. Throw in Martinez and Schnyder if you're talking strictly about shotmaking when they're playing their best.

Think about the Wimbledon commetary. It was Venus who was siad to have more variety in her game than Pierce or Sharapova. It was Venus who the long rallies was said to favor vs Davenport.

Was it Mary Carillo who spent all winter saying Sharapova was more talented than Serena, even though Serena beat her at OZ? Notice how we didn't hear that comparison between Sharapova and Venus? Or Sharapova and Davenport? That isn't because people don't want to say it. It's because it sounds stupid.

Yet in 2002, people were talking about Serena maybe being the best 'most talented' player ever.

When you read through the threads about 'talent', you notice that every single time, people fall back on, 'that's just my opinion'. They avoid objective measures of talent, because it's pretty difficult to say a less successful player is 'talented', and a more successful player is not. (Unless you're dealing with the obvious mental fragility of Mauresmo or Schnyder.)

The objectives measure of talent are, a) what CAN you do during a match against the world's best? and b) do you win vs the world's best?

What shows talent is ....

a) What shots do you have?

b) What shots can you execute under pressure?

If a) and b) are equal, it comes down to who's faster and stronger. (Like virtuall every other sport.)

Very comprehensive post as always.
The relative talent scenario also plays out on on the men's side. A glaring example is Roddick serve, so effective against other players, it disappears against Federer.

venus_rulez
Jul 7th, 2005, 04:31 PM
"talent" is subjectice, because, we as people can't appreciate differences. It always havs to be Venus is better than Serena or Amelie is better than Justine, instead of just agreeing they are talented in different ways just like everyday people. Everyone has different talents and skills, just like on a tennis court. Whether those are used is obviously a different story just like some people go through life aimlessly.

Veenut
Jul 7th, 2005, 04:45 PM
You must not be watching the sport of tennis if you think that anyone was hitting anything at Martina at 100 mph, first serves being the exception. And a series of injuries, lack of fitness, and mental weakness swamped Hingis' game, but the notion that she was 'overpowered' out of Grand Slam titles is ridiculous. She choked away amazing opportunities in 3 of her last 5 slam finals that had nothing at all to do with the power of her opponent.

You can choose to remain delusional if that helps you to keep your sanity but for the rest of us including Martina, know that the power game was the main factor that caused her to give up.

Check out the names of players who were defeating her consistently and tell me what they all have in common. (Sereana, Venus, Lindsay and Jennifer). With the addition of the Russians and Belgians explain how she would fair in todays game without added power. :)

deja_entendu
Jul 7th, 2005, 04:56 PM
You can choose to remain delusional if that helps you to keep your sanity but for the rest of us including Martina, know that the power game was the main factor that caused her to give up.

Check out the names of players who were defeating her consistently and tell me what they all have in common. (Sereana, Venus, Lindsay and Jennifer). With the addition of the Russians and Belgians explain how she would fair in todays game without added power. :)

PEAK Venus, Serena, Jen, and Lindsay were struggling to earn victories against Hingis who was well past her prime and who was slowed down by chronic foot pain and then surgeries on both ankles. Venus, Serena, and Jen are roughly 10,000 notches below the level they were at those few years ago. Hingis' record against the Belgians is 5 wins to 1 loss. And her record against the Russians is 2-2 Dementieva, 1-1 Petrova (and two of those aforementioned 3 losses came right as Martina retired), 1-1 against Myskina, and lots of wins and almost no losses against anyone else of significance. :wavey:

The idea that Hingis' downfall was power players has always been silly. It is my opinion that the #1 contribution to her downfall was injuries, which led to slower foot speed. Just watch any of her matches in 2001 and any of her matches in 1997 and you will see just how heavy-footed she had become. Regardless she was a top 5 player all the way through 2002, despite being mentally unable to close out huge matches. But Hingis was beaten by power players, right? Tell me, who are the players who have beaten Maria, Venus, Lindsay, Serena?? Junkballers?? Um, no sweetie, because unless you're talking about Patty Schnyder, they've lost to the same mindless ball bashing that has been around since the late 80s.

LDVTennis
Jul 7th, 2005, 05:03 PM
You always hear commentators say such and such player was sooo talented, sooo much better than others who actually were winning the titles.

For instance: Mandlikova, Sabatini...they all supposedly were more talented than the Graf's, the Navratilova's of this world, and today it seems everybody is more talented than a Williams sister.

Brings the question: What is all that talent if you can't win when it matters?


You've misstated a number of initial impressions about these players. It was not common knowledge that Mandlikova was more talented than Martina N., nor that Sabatini was more talented than Graf.

About Mandlikova, in particular, the initial impression was that she had a more stylish game than many, if not all, of her peers. By comparison to Martina, that impression was the result of the observation that she moved at the baseline as beautifully as she moved at the net. It was also often said that she had all the shots in the book. Again, by comparison to Martina, I think that claim is a result of the observation that she was more capable at the baseline than Martina was.

As for Sabatini, I never remember any expert claiming that she was more talented than Graf. It was often said that she had a stylish game from the baseline to the net. But, that did not beg a comparison to Graf who was generally acknowledged as being the most stylish player at the baseline of her generation, at least as a result of her movement. No one of Graf's generation could match Graf's movement all over the court.

Both Sabatini and Mandlikova could certainly have done more with their "talent," but as talented as they were they did not have flawless or consistent technique on key shots and I think that as much as their mental issues kept them from winning more.

As for the W sisters, you've set up a false comparison. Why does it matter, if compared to Mandlikova or Sabatini, the W sisters have had more success? As far as Mandlikova or Sabatini's legacy is concerned, such a comparison does nothing to diminish the impression they made on the sport. In the history of the sport, Mandlikova will always be remembered for the extraordinary technical potential and graceful style she brought to the court, Sabatini for her beauty and the sensuality of her game. In these categories, they will always fare better than the Williams' sisters. So, exactly how does this comparison help the W sisters? You've really picked some easy marks numberwise, but in the process you've inadvertently set the stage for a comparison that does not inure to the benefit of the W sisters.

The only valid comparison should be to Graf, Navratilova, Evert and Court on the basis of sheer numbers (i.e., no. of weeks at No. 1, no. of major wins, no. of Grand Slams, no. of tournament wins, etc.). On that basis, the W sisters still have a chance of distinguishing themselves.

But, then again, I think you have to recognize that very little of these player's legacies (i.e., Graf, Navratilova, etc.) rely anymore on sheer numbers (except perhaps for Court). What most remember now is an element or elements of their game that was extraordinary or stylish--- for Graf her gazelle-like movement and forehand, for Martina, her net game and overall athleticism, and for Chris her two-handed backhand and oncourt composure.

If you look at it this way, one has to wonder how much a legacy the W sisters will have when no single element of their games has yet to make an indelible impression, when their style is still more a result of what they wear on the court than on how they move or hit a particular shot or set of shots, and when they are not on pace to overtake Graf, Navratilova, Evert, or Court in the numbers. (This is a question, not a statement.)

venus_rulez
Jul 7th, 2005, 05:05 PM
PEAK Venus, Serena, Jen, and Lindsay were struggling to earn victories against Hingis who was well past her prime and who was slowed down by chronic foot pain and then surgeries on both ankles. Venus, Serena, and Jen are roughly 10,000 notches below the level they were at those few years ago. Hingis' record against the Belgians is 5 wins to 1 loss. And her record against the Russians is 2-2 Dementieva, 1-1 Petrova (and two of those aforementioned 3 losses came right as Martina retired), 1-1 against Myskina, and lots of wins and almost no losses against anyone else of significance. :wavey:

The idea that Hingis' downfall was power players has always been silly. It is my opinion that the #1 contribution to her downfall was injuries, which led to slower foot speed. Just watch any of her matches in 2001 and any of her matches in 1997 and you will see just how heavy-footed she had become. Regardless she was a top 5 player all the way through 2002, despite being mentally unable to close out huge matches. But Hingis was beaten by power players, right? Tell me, who are the players who have beaten Maria, Venus, Lindsay, Serena?? Junkballers?? Um, no sweetie, because unless you're talking about Patty Schnyder, they've lost to the same mindless ball bashing that has been around since the late 80s.



Hingis was fine until the very end of her career (the very end of 2001 all the way to the end of 2002) and the only reason injury is used as an excuse is because Hingis isn't brave enough to say i can't win anymore I quit. And really who would be, but that's why she quit. I bet it was a very bitter pill to swallow that the very people she tried to talk down and was used to beating began having her number. The Sisters with enormous help from Davenport and Capriati ran Hingis out of tennis. Sure Hingis could contend with one MAYBE two of them but in the end they got to her mentally because it didn't matter if she could beat Venus and Serena because she knew Lindsay or Jennifer was waiting for her in the next round. And that's what begin to play on her mind. In the end all her creative tricks were ineffective, because they could all just hit the ball by her. And make up your mind, how can Davenport's and the Sister's wins only be because Hingis was out of her prime, yet you use the Belgians and the Russians to show Hingis was a step ahead? Surely Kim, Justine, Elena, Anastasia, and a lot of other players who would have surely had her number were not near the game they possess now.

!<blocparty>!
Jul 7th, 2005, 05:05 PM
I'd wana be Hingis :) :p

deja_entendu
Jul 7th, 2005, 05:14 PM
Hingis was fine until the very end of her career (the very end of 2001 all the way to the end of 2002) and the only reason injury is used as an excuse is because Hingis isn't brave enough to say i can't win anymore I quit. And really who would be, but that's why she quit. I bet it was a very bitter pill to swallow that the very people she tried to talk down and was used to beating began having her number. The Sisters with enormous help from Davenport and Capriati ran Hingis out of tennis. Sure Hingis could contend with one MAYBE two of them but in the end they got to her mentally because it didn't matter if she could beat Venus and Serena because she knew Lindsay or Jennifer was waiting for her in the next round. And that's what begin to play on her mind. In the end all her creative tricks were ineffective, because they could all just hit the ball by her. And make up your mind, how can Davenport's and the Sister's wins only be because Hingis was out of her prime, yet you use the Belgians and the Russians to show Hingis was a step ahead? Surely Kim, Justine, Elena, Anastasia, and a lot of other players who would have surely had her number were not near the game they possess now.

Another Venus fan :rolleyes: 10-9 and 4-2, figure it out :haha:

Of course if you believe the delusional BS you wrote, fine, but you think Hingis faked her injuries?? Come back down to earth please, she had two ankle surgeries, and the 2001 injury was nasty on replay, and apparently in 2002 her injury was even worse. So you can hate Hingis all you want (and we all know why) but to suggest that Hingis, her camp, her doctors, and her feet had a giant conspiracy to fool the world because she lost her last few tennis games to Capriati and Serena is just :haha: Hingis had match points in the final of the last Grand Slam she competed in healthy before her retirement, so she certainly wasn't out of contention by any means whatsoever.

And as I said these losses were when she was on painkillers in addition to being well past her prime. As for the Belgians/Russians, well, how well they would have done against Martina if she remained healthy is just speculation at this point, but I used the head to heads to show that they certainly didn't come out of the gates firing against her in their early career, except in the last four tournaments she played before her official retirement, which proves nothing at all if you saw any of those dreadful matches.

matthieu_tennis
Jul 7th, 2005, 05:31 PM
because hingis had never work to improve something she had always except the serve and stronger shot

Ms Tracy Austin
Jul 7th, 2005, 05:39 PM
I think to really sum it up, Mandlikova and Sabatini had more variety and flair than Graf and Navratilova, which in turn made them the "better tennis players". However, Graf and Navratilova had weapons that negated the variety and flair of Mandlikova and Sabatini 85% of the time. I'm speaking of their one/two punches, Graf's Serve and forehand, Navratilova's serve'n volley. Those things right there make Graf and Navratilova better "competitors" than Mandlikova and Sabatini, but not necessarily the "better tennis players".

venus_rulez
Jul 7th, 2005, 05:56 PM
Another Venus fan :rolleyes: 10-9 and 4-2, figure it out :haha:

Of course if you believe the delusional BS you wrote, fine, but you think Hingis faked her injuries?? Come back down to earth please, she had two ankle surgeries, and the 2001 injury was nasty on replay, and apparently in 2002 her injury was even worse. So you can hate Hingis all you want (and we all know why) but to suggest that Hingis, her camp, her doctors, and her feet had a giant conspiracy to fool the world because she lost her last few tennis games to Capriati and Serena is just :haha: Hingis had match points in the final of the last Grand Slam she competed in healthy before her retirement, so she certainly wasn't out of contention by any means whatsoever.

And as I said these losses were when she was on painkillers in addition to being well past her prime. As for the Belgians/Russians, well, how well they would have done against Martina if she remained healthy is just speculation at this point, but I used the head to heads to show that they certainly didn't come out of the gates firing against her in their early career, except in the last four tournaments she played before her official retirement, which proves nothing at all if you saw any of those dreadful matches.



It is absolutely ridiculous for you to say that someone who was about 21 years old was past her prime. if YOU honestly believe that then there is no sense discussing this with you because that is a ludicrous thing to say. Hingis quit because mentally she couldn't hang with the big hitters. How convenient for you that right when the Sisters, Davenport, Capriati were dominating Hingis then suddenly her injury became much worse and she couldnt' compete. In the end Hingis never did what she needed to do to WIN another slam after 1999, getting to all those finals is great, but her slam total remains at 5.

DA FOREHAND
Jul 7th, 2005, 06:03 PM
Another Venus fan :rolleyes: 10-9 and 4-2, figure it out :haha:

Of course if you believe the delusional BS you wrote, fine, but you think Hingis faked her injuries?? Come back down to earth please, she had two ankle surgeries, and the 2001 injury was nasty on replay, and apparently in 2002 her injury was even worse. So you can hate Hingis all you want (and we all know why) but to suggest that Hingis, her camp, her doctors, and her feet had a giant conspiracy to fool the world because she lost her last few tennis games to Capriati and Serena is just :haha: Hingis had match points in the final of the last Grand Slam she competed in healthy before her retirement, so she certainly wasn't out of contention by any means whatsoever.

And as I said these losses were when she was on painkillers in addition to being well past her prime. As for the Belgians/Russians, well, how well they would have done against Martina if she remained healthy is just speculation at this point, but I used the head to heads to show that they certainly didn't come out of the gates firing against her in their early career, except in the last four tournaments she played before her official retirement, which proves nothing at all if you saw any of those dreadful matches.

Now that you've spun that ...would you spin this 2-7 -v- a player Hingis called over the hill, the game has passed her, it's much faster now....all of which could be applied to her.

DA FOREHAND
Jul 7th, 2005, 06:08 PM
I think to really sum it up, Mandlikova and Sabatini had more variety and flair than Graf and Navratilova, which in turn made them the "better tennis players". However, Graf and Navratilova had weapons that negated the variety and flair of Mandlikova and Sabatini 85% of the time. I'm speaking of their one/two punches, Graf's Serve and forehand, Navratilova's serve'n volley. Those things right there make Graf and Navratilova better "competitors" than Mandlikova and Sabatini, but not necessarily the "better tennis players".


I'm glad the real Tracy Austin, doesn't make idiotic comments such as this. GRAF and Navratilova are better players and compettitors than Sabi/Mand.

Veenut
Jul 7th, 2005, 06:09 PM
PEAK Venus, Serena, Jen, and Lindsay were struggling to earn victories against Hingis who was well past her prime and who was slowed down by chronic foot pain and then surgeries on both ankles. Venus, Serena, and Jen are roughly 10,000 notches below the level they were at those few years ago. Hingis' record against the Belgians is 5 wins to 1 loss. And her record against the Russians is 2-2 Dementieva, 1-1 Petrova (and two of those aforementioned 3 losses came right as Martina retired), 1-1 against Myskina, and lots of wins and almost no losses against anyone else of significance. :wavey:

The idea that Hingis' downfall was power players has always been silly. It is my opinion that the #1 contribution to her downfall was injuries, which led to slower foot speed. Just watch any of her matches in 2001 and any of her matches in 1997 and you will see just how heavy-footed she had become. Regardless she was a top 5 player all the way through 2002, despite being mentally unable to close out huge matches. But Hingis was beaten by power players, right? Tell me, who are the players who have beaten Maria, Venus, Lindsay, Serena?? Junkballers?? Um, no sweetie, because unless you're talking about Patty Schnyder, they've lost to the same mindless ball bashing that has been around since the late 80s.

This post just confirms your delusional state and maybe never to recover. When you say Martina was past her prime and she is a couple months younger than Venus it is hysterical. :lol: How would you describe Lindsay and Jennifer who were both older than Martina at the time they were dominating her. :confused:

Then what would you say of Lindsay who has suffered multiple injuries and surgery and at 29 is #1 and has been to 2 major finals. most of Martina's contempories have suffered injuries of some kind and have struggled and worked very hard to regain their form and improve their game after. Only her delusional fans buy the foot injury story but if it keeps them happy so be it. ;)

Ms Tracy Austin
Jul 7th, 2005, 06:12 PM
I'm glad the real Tracy Austin, doesn't make idiotic comments such as this. GRAF and Navratilova are better players and compettitors than Sabi/Mand.

The only thing I see idiotic is you getting your knickers in a bunch just because you disagree with me. Anyway, I'm happy you're happy, and you're welcome to disagree with me, just dont insult me when you do.

As you were! :wavey:

Volcana
Jul 7th, 2005, 10:16 PM
Two stupid ideas battling for supremacy. What's stupider? The idea that Hingis faked her injuries, or the idea that the power of the rest of the tour wasn't the reason she stopped winning slams? Hard to say.

But injuries were NOT the reason Hingis stopped winning slams. Her last slam win was in January of 1999. But she ended 1999 #1, she ended 2000 #1, she held the #1 ranking all the way through 2001. Her last tournament that year was Filderstadt. She was winning for three YEARS after her last slam win. She just wasn't beating the power player in the slams.

And the idea that Hingis' injuries didn't cause her retirement is .... I'm not sure if the right word is despicable or ignorant. She's always been very upfront. She can play tennis. She can't TRAIN for tennis. She can't put in the four to six hours a day on the practice court. Tennis isn't a sport you can just show up in matches for. If you don't train, you drop out of the top hundred fast, no matter how talented you are.

I know she'll be at the top of some people's 'hate list' forever, but only a total non-athlete could fail to understand that a professional who can't train can only retire.

DA FOREHAND
Jul 7th, 2005, 10:46 PM
The only thing I see idiotic is you getting your knickers in a bunch just because you disagree with me. Anyway, I'm happy you're happy, and you're welcome to disagree with me, just dont insult me when you do.

As you were! :wavey:


OPPS TOO LATE


YOu've been punk'd :tape:

VeeReeDavJCap81
Jul 7th, 2005, 10:59 PM
When I think of tennis talent, I always think of Venus and Hingis. People always say "Serena is so talented", which is true. But Serena had to work much harder than both Venus and Hingis to compete with them. Venus is talented in the sense that she is so acrobatic and so speedy on the court, that she doesn't need stroke prowess (ala Davenport, Sharapova) to be competitive. Hingis is/was talented in the sense that she had so much court sense that she could hang with the big babes in rallies by outsmarting them. It was amazing the way she used to set up points and then go for the win. Or sometimes she'd just frustrate her opponents and let them self destruct.

hanafan
Jul 7th, 2005, 11:05 PM
First, I don't think it's fair to compare Mandlikova to Sabatini. Hana was a TRUE champion : she has reached 8 Grand slams finals beetween 80 & 87, and won 4, compared to Gaby's only slam.
If Hana Mandlikova is an "underachieved" player, then it means that in the last 30 years, Tracy Austin, Arantxa Sanchez, Justine Henin, Lindsay davenport and many others were "underachieved players"....

Concerning talent, commentators often sais that Hana Mandlikova was "the most gifted natural athlete on the tour", or "most talented"... But many back injuries and sometimes a mental weakness( compared to these exceptional competitors that are Chris & Martina) prevented her to win more majors! But She was the ONLY consistent rival of these 2 until Steffi started to win in 87. At this period, Hana stopped almost 2 years b/c of injuries, and when she came back in Januaray 89, she never was the same player, and quit in 1990.

1jackson2001
Jul 7th, 2005, 11:34 PM
Well I'd rather be the "less talented" player and winning more titles. :) It would mean I've gotten the most out of myself/body/talent and I would have no regrets. If I was very talented but didn't win that much I would feel like an underachiever and I would be left wondering "what if??". :cool:

Kart
Jul 7th, 2005, 11:36 PM
First, I don't think it's fair to compare Mandlikova to Sabatini. Hana was a TRUE champion : she has reached 8 Grand slams finals beetween 80 & 87, and won 4, compared to Gaby's only slam.
If Hana Mandlikova is an "underachieved" player, then it means that in the last 30 years, Tracy Austin, Arantxa Sanchez, Justine Henin, Lindsay davenport and many others were "underachieved players"....


There's no need to start promoting Mandlikova over Sabatini as if that makes her less of an underachiever :(. Sabatini was a true champion as well. Just because she didn't win more slams doesn't make her less of one. Her opponents were different and she was a different player in a different time.

If you're going to say that Gaby underachieved for her ability you might as well say Hana did too - although I'll be the first to admit I'm not old enough to have appreciated her at her best I gather she was fantastic :worship:.

Of course, I don't consider either of them underachievers. Both had wonderful careers from where I'm sitting.

hanafan
Jul 7th, 2005, 11:41 PM
Sorry, Kart! You're right! Hana was wonderful, but Gaby was the only one to be a real threat to Steffi's domination, at her strongest (88' Golden Slam)... So... respect for both players! ;)

arcus
Jul 7th, 2005, 11:54 PM
this is interesting.
I think that some of the posters didnt quite get that the original poster meant. u can succeed in tennis based on god-given natural ability, or what you are taught.

I think by "talent" the commentators are refering to players with the former, ie amazing innate shot making ability, in that they can hit virtually ANY shot in the book, have great style, and generally have the ability to make shots that other players just dream of, no matter how they are coached...... These players used to get called "murcurial" a lot.

Mandlikova was a great example. Her shot making ability was sensational. When she was on, she was hard for anyone to beat. But mentally she was not as secure as some of her more successful peers. True, who won 4 slams, but most people who watched her thought that if she could play her game without nerves 12 months a year, she would have won many more. People contrasted her a lot to evert, who was always described as "metronomic"; while hana was brilliant but very erratic, so evert usually won.

Interestingly Navratilova has been on both sides of the fence. Initially, people praised her amazing talent for shot production, particulalry in the forecourt, but commented that she lost cos she wasnt as mentally strong. That changed although her shot making talent was always bigger than her mental game.

Evonne goolagong was an even better example of the "talent" that was not as often fulfulled as it should be. Other examples include the great "henri leconte" (Loved him!), maybe Novotna, hingis of course.

in ATP terms the difference is summed up for me by federer and roddick. federer has more innate ability, variety, whereas roddick has more explosive power.

In answer to the original question, who would I prefer to be? Id say the mandlikova/federer type..... the player who could make the extraordinary shots.
Of course, "talent" is a hard thing to define.
Generally, in tennis it seems to refer to shot making skill, but, IMO, there are many forms of talent. By talent, I mean a natural ability, somehting that is not just taught.

Chris evert and steffi grafs mental strength in match play were great talents. no one taught them that. It was part of their personality.

Chris everts consistency might be considered a great talent. graf had more "talent" ie natural ability on the forehand vs the backhand. Navratilova's net play was a great talent. Her longevity/committment is a talent of sorts, I guess. The williams athletic ability / power is a talent. In fact, in my book, the mental discipline to practice 6 hours a day and not be lazy is, is a talent, 'a la' ivan llendl.


Thats why I like tennis so much. So many different skills to bring to the table make a difference.....

Shvedbarilescu
Jul 8th, 2005, 12:34 AM
a) I think anyone suggesting Mandlikova or Sabatini had more tennis talent than Navratilova or Graf is insane.

b) Mandlikova is a NOT an example of a 'talented' player who didn't win. She played slams from 1980 to 1990. Of the 44 slams in that period, In that period, Evert won 10, Navratilova 16, and Graf 9. That's 35. Of the 9 remaining, Mandlikova won 4. That's not exactly underachieving! She had the misfortune to spend her entire career playing against three of the five players in the history of the sport.

Sabatini, OTOH, was a player comparable to Mauresmo today. Able to beat anybody, except when it counted most.

c) You don't hear much commentary saying how other players are more 'talented' than Venus or Serena anymore. True, the word 'talent' is more often applied to lesser players, but to a great extent, it's used in place of 'potential'. Remember how 'talented' Daniela Hantuchova was supposed to be? But ultimately, her game is a lesser version of Lindsay Davenport. (Much lesser, but I am comparing Dani to the world #1.)

d) I think it was Goran Ivanisevic who said the most talented player was the one who recieved a fault serve and sliced a drop shot with it so it just clears the net, then skips sideways to the ballboy, who never has to move.

e) 'Talent' is only talent if it's usable against the Williams' and Davenport's and Sharapova's and Dementieva's of the world. Hingis was a vastly talented player. But she won her last slam in 1999, and it wasn't because of her feet. (not 'sole'-ly anyway :)) The speed and power of the game swamped her talent. It doesn't swamp Justine Henin-Hardenne's talent. Hingis didn't have talent that could execute when every shot coming at was 100 mph and near the opposite sideline.

In today's environment, against today's top players, who demonstrates more talent than Venus or Serena? Henin-Hardenne. Mauresmo. That's about it. Throw in Martinez and Schnyder if you're talking strictly about shotmaking when they're playing their best.

Think about the Wimbledon commetary. It was Venus who was siad to have more variety in her game than Pierce or Sharapova. It was Venus who the long rallies was said to favor vs Davenport.

Was it Mary Carillo who spent all winter saying Sharapova was more talented than Serena, even though Serena beat her at OZ? Notice how we didn't hear that comparison between Sharapova and Venus? Or Sharapova and Davenport? That isn't because people don't want to say it. It's because it sounds stupid.

Yet in 2002, people were talking about Serena maybe being the best 'most talented' player ever.

When you read through the threads about 'talent', you notice that every single time, people fall back on, 'that's just my opinion'. They avoid objective measures of talent, because it's pretty difficult to say a less successful player is 'talented', and a more successful player is not. (Unless you're dealing with the obvious mental fragility of Mauresmo or Schnyder.)

The objectives measure of talent are, a) what CAN you do during a match against the world's best? and b) do you win vs the world's best?

What shows talent is ....

a) What shots do you have?

b) What shots can you execute under pressure?

If a) and b) are equal, it comes down to who's faster and stronger. (Like virtuall every other sport.)

Agree with others. This is a great post. Especially your comments on Hana.

SM
Jul 8th, 2005, 02:05 AM
look at a player like irena spirlea. she has all the elements graf had in her game technically, but then it comes down to things that can't be taught in a tennis academy, intangibles. you cant make an objective assessment based purely on technique/form.

spirlea underachieved big time IMO, altho i didnt see much of her, i thought she had great technique, very graf-esque perhaps even technically better

Yonexforever
Jul 8th, 2005, 02:15 AM
a) I think anyone suggesting Mandlikova or Sabatini had more tennis talent than Navratilova or Graf is insane.

b) Mandlikova is a NOT an example of a 'talented' player who didn't win. She played slams from 1980 to 1990. Of the 44 slams in that period, In that period, Evert won 10, Navratilova 16, and Graf 9. That's 35. Of the 9 remaining, Mandlikova won 4. That's not exactly underachieving! She had the misfortune to spend her entire career playing against three of the five players in the history of the sport.

Sabatini, OTOH, was a player comparable to Mauresmo today. Able to beat anybody, except when it counted most.

c) You don't hear much commentary saying how other players are more 'talented' than Venus or Serena anymore. True, the word 'talent' is more often applied to lesser players, but to a great extent, it's used in place of 'potential'. Remember how 'talented' Daniela Hantuchova was supposed to be? But ultimately, her game is a lesser version of Lindsay Davenport. (Much lesser, but I am comparing Dani to the world #1.)

d) I think it was Goran Ivanisevic who said the most talented player was the one who recieved a fault serve and sliced a drop shot with it so it just clears the net, then skips sideways to the ballboy, who never has to move.

e) 'Talent' is only talent if it's usable against the Williams' and Davenport's and Sharapova's and Dementieva's of the world. Hingis was a vastly talented player. But she won her last slam in 1999, and it wasn't because of her feet. (not 'sole'-ly anyway :)) The speed and power of the game swamped her talent. It doesn't swamp Justine Henin-Hardenne's talent. Hingis didn't have talent that could execute when every shot coming at was 100 mph and near the opposite sideline.

In today's environment, against today's top players, who demonstrates more talent than Venus or Serena? Henin-Hardenne. Mauresmo. That's about it. Throw in Martinez and Schnyder if you're talking strictly about shotmaking when they're playing their best.

Think about the Wimbledon commetary. It was Venus who was siad to have more variety in her game than Pierce or Sharapova. It was Venus who the long rallies was said to favor vs Davenport.

Was it Mary Carillo who spent all winter saying Sharapova was more talented than Serena, even though Serena beat her at OZ? Notice how we didn't hear that comparison between Sharapova and Venus? Or Sharapova and Davenport? That isn't because people don't want to say it. It's because it sounds stupid.

Yet in 2002, people were talking about Serena maybe being the best 'most talented' player ever.

When you read through the threads about 'talent', you notice that every single time, people fall back on, 'that's just my opinion'. They avoid objective measures of talent, because it's pretty difficult to say a less successful player is 'talented', and a more successful player is not. (Unless you're dealing with the obvious mental fragility of Mauresmo or Schnyder.)

The objectives measure of talent are, a) what CAN you do during a match against the world's best? and b) do you win vs the world's best?

What shows talent is ....

a) What shots do you have?

b) What shots can you execute under pressure?

If a) and b) are equal, it comes down to who's faster and stronger. (Like virtuall every other sport.)


That about sums it up!

JenFan75
Jul 8th, 2005, 03:51 AM
To be a player that's winning grand slams, you can't just be devoid of talent. You have to be talented with something. For example, Hingis was a talented thinker, The Williams Sisters have talents like the way they fight through matches, and the sheer power they hit the ball with, and players like Mauresmo are talented shotmakers that can hit almost any shot in the book. Every player has talent, just in different regards.

Jakeev
Jul 8th, 2005, 06:17 AM
You always hear commentators say such and such player was sooo talented, sooo much better than others who actually were winning the titles.

For instance: Mandlikova, Sabatini...they all supposedly were more talented than the Graf's, the Navratilova's of this world, and today it seems everybody is more talented than a Williams sister.

Brings the question: What is all that talent if you can't win when it matters?

And you are getting that from where? Very few tennis critics ever though Mandlikova was better than Navratilova, Sabatini over Graf or anybody right now over the Williams sisters.

But I am sure Mandlikova or Sabatini would have done anything to have a career like the Williams sisters.

bandabou
Jul 8th, 2005, 04:40 PM
You've misstated a number of initial impressions about these players. It was not common knowledge that Mandlikova was more talented than Martina N., nor that Sabatini was more talented than Graf.

About Mandlikova, in particular, the initial impression was that she had a more stylish game than many, if not all, of her peers. By comparison to Martina, that impression was the result of the observation that she moved at the baseline as beautifully as she moved at the net. It was also often said that she had all the shots in the book. Again, by comparison to Martina, I think that claim is a result of the observation that she was more capable at the baseline than Martina was.

As for Sabatini, I never remember any expert claiming that she was more talented than Graf. It was often said that she had a stylish game from the baseline to the net. But, that did not beg a comparison to Graf who was generally acknowledged as being the most stylish player at the baseline of her generation, at least as a result of her movement. No one of Graf's generation could match Graf's movement all over the court.

Both Sabatini and Mandlikova could certainly have done more with their "talent," but as talented as they were they did not have flawless or consistent technique on key shots and I think that as much as their mental issues kept them from winning more.

As for the W sisters, you've set up a false comparison. Why does it matter, if compared to Mandlikova or Sabatini, the W sisters have had more success? As far as Mandlikova or Sabatini's legacy is concerned, such a comparison does nothing to diminish the impression they made on the sport. In the history of the sport, Mandlikova will always be remembered for the extraordinary technical potential and graceful style she brought to the court, Sabatini for her beauty and the sensuality of her game. In these categories, they will always fare better than the Williams' sisters. So, exactly how does this comparison help the W sisters? You've really picked some easy marks numberwise, but in the process you've inadvertently set the stage for a comparison that does not inure to the benefit of the W sisters.

The only valid comparison should be to Graf, Navratilova, Evert and Court on the basis of sheer numbers (i.e., no. of weeks at No. 1, no. of major wins, no. of Grand Slams, no. of tournament wins, etc.). On that basis, the W sisters still have a chance of distinguishing themselves.

But, then again, I think you have to recognize that very little of these player's legacies (i.e., Graf, Navratilova, etc.) rely anymore on sheer numbers (except perhaps for Court). What most remember now is an element or elements of their game that was extraordinary or stylish--- for Graf her gazelle-like movement and forehand, for Martina, her net game and overall athleticism, and for Chris her two-handed backhand and oncourt composure.

If you look at it this way, one has to wonder how much a legacy the W sisters will have when no single element of their games has yet to make an indelible impression, when their style is still more a result of what they wear on the court than on how they move or hit a particular shot or set of shots, and when they are not on pace to overtake Graf, Navratilova, Evert, or Court in the numbers. (This is a question, not a statement.)

So now it is about elements of the game, huh? So you' re saying that Mandlikova and Sabatini will be remembered more than the sisters, just because their game was more " beautiful" than the sisters, despite the fact that the sisters acomplished much much more than them career-wise?

Interesting...

And you're saying a bold thing there....so Court's legacy is all about numbers and not about style? Does that mean that Hana and Gabriela will be hailed much more than Court as well?

MLF
Jul 8th, 2005, 05:01 PM
A Hana Mandlikova type? Hana won 4 grand slam singles titles. She won 27 WTA singles titles in total and six doubles titles. A good type to be I'd say - only a handful of players in the Open era can claim to have been more successful.

Sam L
Jul 8th, 2005, 05:02 PM
Monica Seles apparently learnt tennis by hitting the ball against a wall. If you look at her game pre-stabbing you'll see that it was based around chasing every ball down and taking it extremely early. She didn't have much variety and she didn't have a lot of traditional tennis skills anyway but if she weren't stabbed, who knows how many slams she would've won?!?!?

And that's a shame because if you look at the top 8 grand slam winners ever, which includes Seles, she's the only one that did not really play traditional tennis.

In fact, Evert is the only one aside from her, with a two-handed backhand. The rest all had one-handed backhands and most textbook strokes, except probably Graf's forehand.

DA FOREHAND
Jul 8th, 2005, 05:39 PM
graf had more "talent" ie natural ability on the forehand vs the backhand. Navratilova's net play was a great talent. Her longevity/committment is a talent of sorts, I guess. The williams athletic ability / power is a talent. In fact, in my book, the mental discipline to practice 6 hours a day and not be lazy is, is a talent, 'a la' ivan llendl.




practicing for 6 hrs is a talent?

Graf had as much natural ability in her backhand as she did in her forehand, and she could hit every shot in the book. All of the top players esp. open era can hit every shot in the book, but If I can hit two shots and end a rally what would be the point of me extending points for style's sake?

Perfect Example 99 Us Open final...Serena not only outserved(duh)Hingis, she also out hit her, and also through in angles and what not. If Hingis thought she could blast winners her game would have been similar to Justine's , all players play up thier strengths doesn't mean they aren't capable of touch, angles, and diff spins.

Ms Tracy Austin
Jul 8th, 2005, 05:49 PM
Graf had as much natural ability in her backhand as she did in her forehand!

:eek: LOL, now look at whose been PUNKED! :haha:

LDVTennis
Jul 8th, 2005, 06:23 PM
So now it is about elements of the game, huh? So you' re saying that Mandlikova and Sabatini will be remembered more than the sisters, just because their game was more " beautiful" than the sisters, despite the fact that the sisters acomplished much much more than them career-wise?

Interesting...

And you're saying a bold thing there....so Court's legacy is all about numbers and not about style? Does that mean that Hana and Gabriela will be hailed much more than Court as well?

Yes, that is probably what I am saying. Is it fair? No, but there are a lot of things about how this game is marketed and recorded for posterity that are not fair. Eventually, it all tends to even out logically, by pure chance, or by application of the "Peter Principle." You, of course, know what I think is the best example of that.

Court's legacy for most comes down to numbers because she has and it seems from how things are going will always have, the big one, 24 majors. Who cares that so many of them were Australians. She is at the top with 24. And, that is how most people will remember her. It is clear and simple.

They could have remembered her for other things --- her athleticism, her all-court game, etc. And, I am not denying that some don't. It's just that in those departments there are more vivid memories and consequently Court tends to take a backseat to those who can more command our attention in those areas.

The general rule is that as with most things one only remembers the details that stood out. And, given our ever-shortening attention spans, no one really has the time or concentration to go over what might have been missed. So, everyone sooner or later gets reduced to a caricature of themselves based on what might have been their best or worst quality. So, just talking about their games, Steffi ends up being all about the forehand; Martina, all about the net game; and Chris all about the two-handed backhand.

Now, if you had to draw a caricature of the W sisters, what do you think the reductivist media idiots will choose as the defining element? Power? Remember. Power is relative. Chris was considered the power player of her generation. But, is she remembered for that? Hardly. Or, maybe, without anyone recognizing that there might be something racist to thinking this way, will they be remembered just like Althea was? So, how do we remember Althea? Do we remember her on the basis of her number of major wins? Do we remember her on the basis of one of her brilliant shots? Or, do we remember her on the basis of the color of her skin? So, what do you think will end up being the defining element for the W "sisters"?

arcus
Jul 8th, 2005, 06:26 PM
graf had more "talent" ie natural ability on the forehand vs the backhand. Navratilova's net play was a great talent. Her longevity/committment is a talent of sorts, I guess. The williams athletic ability / power is a talent. In fact, in my book, the mental discipline to practice 6 hours a day and not be lazy is, is a talent, 'a la' ivan llendl.




practicing for 6 hrs is a talent?

Graf had as much natural ability in her backhand as she did in her forehand, and she could hit every shot in the book. All of the top players esp. open era can hit every shot in the book, but If I can hit two shots and end a rally what would be the point of me extending points for style's sake?

Perfect Example 99 Us Open final...Serena not only outserved(duh)Hingis, she also out hit her, and also through in angles and what not. If Hingis thought she could blast winners her game would have been similar to Justine's , all players play up thier strengths doesn't mean they aren't capable of touch, angles, and diff spins.

IM not sure I get all ur points but let me clarify what I meant......

1] Some players with a lot of natural ball striking ability fail to succeed in the game cos they lack the committment and discipline to work hard and realize their ability. Other players have a work ethic and drive that makes their peers marvel. Ivan Llendl was like that, he trained unbelievably and was exceptionally disciplined. IMO, that kind of committment, ambition and focus is a kind of a "talent", as not everyone has it. I was making the point that players can be talented in different ways.

2] I stick by what I said about graf and the forehand. Her backhand was great and underrated, dont get me wrong. However, it was the forehand where she was exceptionally gifted. That shot did not come out of a coaching manual. It didn't matter if she had tons of time to set up a shot, or if she was falling backwards off on the wrong foot hitting a "half-volley" FH, she still had a feel on that wing that was phenomenal. It was really an innate thing. Her backhand was more technically standard and even "mortal", you might say! It was the side that got attacked, when she was beaten, so I dont see how you can think she had as much ability on that side.

3] Even top players today have varying ability to hit different shots. Maybe they can all execute a drop shot, but some players have much better feel and ability produce it than others. The top players are no more equivalent in their ability to hit the ball hard than in their ability to produce a variety of adventurous shots.
Sure, U might be able to overwhelm a player with power, and win the match, but that does not mean that there aren't areas of the game where the opponent has more talent.

DA FOREHAND
Jul 8th, 2005, 06:48 PM
IM not sure I get all ur points but let me clarify what I meant......

1] Some players with a lot of natural ball striking ability fail to succeed in the game cos they lack the committment and discipline to work hard and realize their ability. Other players have a work ethic and drive that makes their peers marvel. Ivan Llendl was like that, he trained unbelievably and was exceptionally disciplined. IMO, that kind of committment, ambition and focus is a kind of a "talent", as not everyone has it. I was making the point that players can be talented in different ways.

2] I stick by what I said about graf and the forehand. Her backhand was great and underrated, dont get me wrong. However, it was the forehand where she was exceptionally gifted. That shot did not come out of a coaching manual. It didn't matter if she had tons of time to set up a shot, or if she was falling backwards off on the wrong foot hitting a "half-volley" FH, she still had a feel on that wing that was phenomenal. It was really an innate thing. Her backhand was more technically standard and even "mortal", you might say! It was the side that got attacked, when she was beaten, so I dont see how you can think she had as much ability on that side.

3] Even top players today have varying ability to hit different shots. Maybe they can all execute a drop shot, but some players have much better feel and ability produce it than others. The top players are no more equivalent in their ability to hit the ball hard than in their ability to produce a variety of adventurous shots.
Sure, U might be able to overwhelm a player with power, and win the match, but that does not mean that there aren't areas of the game where the opponent has more talent.

Steffi had that sliced backhand from the time she could hold the racquet w/one hand, I'd say that's natural....Yes her forehand was her strength(it's considered the greatest shot in womens tennis history) and people attacked her backhand cause that was the lessor of two evils, it just made more sense, but I can name three former #1's who will attest to the strengths of her backhand. Navratilova, HIngis and Seles ( who called it a weapon).

bandabou
Jul 10th, 2005, 02:33 PM
Yes, that is probably what I am saying. Is it fair? No, but there are a lot of things about how this game is marketed and recorded for posterity that are not fair. Eventually, it all tends to even out logically, by pure chance, or by application of the "Peter Principle." You, of course, know what I think is the best example of that.

Court's legacy for most comes down to numbers because she has and it seems from how things are going will always have, the big one, 24 majors. Who cares that so many of them were Australians. She is at the top with 24. And, that is how most people will remember her. It is clear and simple.

They could have remembered her for other things --- her athleticism, her all-court game, etc. And, I am not denying that some don't. It's just that in those departments there are more vivid memories and consequently Court tends to take a backseat to those who can more command our attention in those areas.

The general rule is that as with most things one only remembers the details that stood out. And, given our ever-shortening attention spans, no one really has the time or concentration to go over what might have been missed. So, everyone sooner or later gets reduced to a caricature of themselves based on what might have been their best or worst quality. So, just talking about their games, Steffi ends up being all about the forehand; Martina, all about the net game; and Chris all about the two-handed backhand.

Now, if you had to draw a caricature of the W sisters, what do you think the reductivist media idiots will choose as the defining element? Power? Remember. Power is relative. Chris was considered the power player of her generation. But, is she remembered for that? Hardly. Or, maybe, without anyone recognizing that there might be something racist to thinking this way, will they be remembered just like Althea was? So, how do we remember Althea? Do we remember her on the basis of her number of major wins? Do we remember her on the basis of one of her brilliant shots? Or, do we remember her on the basis of the color of her skin? So, what do you think will end up being the defining element for the W "sisters"?

For the sisters, I think they will be remembered for their overall athletiscism, for their ability to turn defense into offense, as in hitting offensive shots while being in a defensive position....and yeah, I think people will remember them as the great black sister-combo who took the tennis world by storm.

But you DO realize that you in fact MADE my point,don't you? By magnifying how sexy Gaby's game was, how magnificent Hana' s game was when in full stread..compared to the sisters's game....so are you saying the sisters OVERachieved and that Gaby and Hana UNDERachieved?

Geisha
Jul 10th, 2005, 02:48 PM
I think to really sum it up, Mandlikova and Sabatini had more variety and flair than Graf and Navratilova, which in turn made them the "better tennis players". However, Graf and Navratilova had weapons that negated the variety and flair of Mandlikova and Sabatini 85% of the time. I'm speaking of their one/two punches, Graf's Serve and forehand, Navratilova's serve'n volley. Those things right there make Graf and Navratilova better "competitors" than Mandlikova and Sabatini, but not necessarily the "better tennis players".

Yeah, that's true in my opinion. I can relate to something like this:

Last week, I played a tournament and my first round was against this guy. Whatever- anyways, I had better volleys, drop shots, slices, backhands, movement, and strategies than this guy, but he would get a shot off of his forehand and win. He won the match 7-6 (6), 4-6, 6-3. Yawn.

spencercarlos
Jul 10th, 2005, 04:50 PM
You always hear commentators say such and such player was sooo talented, sooo much better than others who actually were winning the titles.

For instance: Mandlikova, Sabatini...they all supposedly were more talented than the Graf's, the Navratilova's of this world, and today it seems everybody is more talented than a Williams sister.

Brings the question: What is all that talent if you can't win when it matters?
Who said Sabatini was more talented than Graf and Navratilova? That is simply nuts.
Gaby probably had as much talent but IMO to be better than them? Not really.
This applies also to Conchita Martinez too. Compare her to Arantxa, who was more talented? Who won more?... SO WHAT?

K-Dog
Jul 10th, 2005, 05:52 PM
Talent is a very tricky word to use here. I believe in tennis especially that talent means that you have a Federer-like game with tons of crafty shots, and that you have all the shots in the book. Talent is often mistaken with stylish. Some players play an elegant, stylish game. That is their game. Good for them that they can play all the shots. But when it comes to the great women's champions, there are only a few players that were very stylish like Mauresmo, Hingis, Justine, or Hana. To me, Steffi Graf and Martina Navratilova are the two most talented players to play the women's game that I've seen. Steffi was a compete player with a BIG forehand, a slice backhand, a good serve, and great speed. She never tried to always be mixing up the spins and the speeds of the balls like stlyish players. She played a straight forward game, period. Same thing with Martina. Martina turned into a great athletic serve and vollyer, but she never tried to play the baseline game on you. She, like Steffi had a game plan that they executed well and won A LOT with it. I never saw Margerat Court, Maureen Connelly, Helen Wills, or Suzanne Longlen play, but I'm sure they are up there with Graf and Martina. Some players perfect things that work well and win them matches like Davenport who has huge groundies and a big serve. She isn't as stylish as Henin-Hardenne, because Justine was taught to play and use different shots to win points, where as Maria, Venus, Serena, Lindsay, Monica, Pierce were all taught to hit through their opponents and win points with power. To me, controlling a ball that you are trying to hit as hard as the Willies and Maria do is a tremendous gift and a great talent. There are many ways to play this game, and that's where critics get talent and style mixed up. They think that because someone plays slices and drop shots instead of a 90 mph winner means that they have more talent. The ability to win is a great talent. The top players play at a higher level than everyone else, and that's why they have more talent. Style and talent should never be mixed up.

Also, it is thought that if Lindsay misses by inches and if Venus misses by feet that there is a difference. No, they both missed and the way someone hits a ball is unique to themselves. One person might have opened the racquet face too much with lessor technique than someone who did the same thing, but hits the ball "sounder".

bandabou
Jul 13th, 2005, 06:24 PM
So what is it, LDV?