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View Full Version : How would the top 10 look...


esquímaux
Oct 21st, 2004, 04:46 AM
....if we still used wooden racquets? :) Of course we'll never know, but I want your opinions :D.....and please don't just gloat your faves :tape::D:D

SzavayFi
Oct 21st, 2004, 04:47 AM
i would be different, immediatly delete all of the power hitteres, whoop, we can just replace the top ten with ten others who arent such powerful girls! becuase i imagine these woodies does bad things for the power hitters.

bmxbandit
Oct 21st, 2004, 04:51 AM
....if we still used wooden racquets? :) Of course we'll never know, but I want your opinions :D.....and please don't just gloat your faves :tape::D:D
Hi :wavey:

esquímaux
Oct 21st, 2004, 04:51 AM
Could you make a list please :) *Imagining Ruano-Pascual as world # 2* :angel:

bw2082
Oct 21st, 2004, 04:52 AM
I like to think that champions will be champions regardless of the equipment or era they play in.

Marcus1979
Oct 21st, 2004, 04:52 AM
Navratilova was like a power player in her time and she used wooden racquet technology.

Volcana
Oct 21st, 2004, 05:40 AM
The thing about wood racquets is, the players who hit a slow ball now would be hitting a REALLY slow ball. You couldn't get ANY ball past a Venus Williams or Kim Clijsters or Justine Henin-Hardenne. The BIG power hitters would still hit a really fast paced ball. Serena and Lindsay would still have the best serves. But it would be MUCH easier to get to the net. A weak return from anybody is an immediate move-in-an-win.

Venus would play the way she plays on clay all the time. Move in a lot, as opposed to how she almost always stays back on hard courts.

Myskina might have trouble. She's not bit, not tall, and the high-tech racquet really helps her pace.

Dementieva 2nd serve might be sub-50 mph. Other players would take it closer to the service line than the baseline.

The high-tech racquets make the lesser players MORE competitive with the better players. Go back to wood, and the distance between the top 12 or so and everyone else might become acute.

The one player who I think would REALLY benefit is Patty Schnyder. But outside of her, I can't think of anyone outside the top 20 who'd suddenly move in. Bovina would probably move up a couple notches. BUt there are very few players inthe top 15 who hit every ball as hard as they can. Petrova and Sharapova come closest.

Serena would probably use LESS spin. She wouldn't have to topspin so much to corral her power with a wood racquet.

esquímaux
Oct 21st, 2004, 05:47 AM
Thanx Volkie :D

azza
Oct 21st, 2004, 05:51 AM
Nicole Pratt :D

franny
Oct 21st, 2004, 07:49 AM
Martina Hingis would still be around and would be number 1 in the world still. Honestly, her variety and complete game is so old school, and so made for wooden rackets. Also, we'd see a lot of serve and volleyers. I don't know if we can make the assumptions though of who would be in top 10, because I'm sure that players would adjust to the equipment.

Brαm
Oct 21st, 2004, 08:49 AM
Martina Hingis would still be around and would be number 1 in the world still.

How could an injured player be no.1? She retired because of her ankle didn't she? :scratch:

Darop.
Oct 21st, 2004, 11:57 AM
I don't mean to say may fave player (:o) but camon, we all know Silvia Farina would play great with a wooden racket ;)

I'd say Conchita too ;)

Pamela Shriver
Oct 21st, 2004, 12:01 PM
I'd be number one with wooden racquets. And Virginia Wade has wooden hip replacements would that count?

GermanBoy
Oct 21st, 2004, 12:28 PM
Could you make a list please :) *Imagining Ruano-Pascual as world # 2* :angel:
Ruano-Pascual :eek:
Shaughnessy :eek:
Pratt :eek:
Stepanek :eek:

Very interesting and individual taste, esqui... :o :angel:

Evelyn Tremble
Oct 21st, 2004, 01:13 PM
There would be absolutely no difference in the rankings. An experiment was conducted by the BBC at Wimbledon - ‘The Scud’ was supplied with a wooden racquet and could still serve at the same speed as with today’s racquets.

Spunky83
Oct 21st, 2004, 01:39 PM
I'd be number one with wooden racquets. And Virginia Wade has wooden hip replacements would that count?

:lol: ...I think it would be fun to have a little retro-exhibition tourney where the players are forced to play with wooden rackets;). Don´t think that any player (especially the hard-hitters and super-high-tech racket players) can cope with the situation.

Vass22
Oct 21st, 2004, 04:57 PM
The thing about wood racquets is, the players who hit a slow ball now would be hitting a REALLY slow ball. You couldn't get ANY ball past a Venus Williams or Kim Clijsters or Justine Henin-Hardenne. The BIG power hitters would still hit a really fast paced ball. Serena and Lindsay would still have the best serves. But it would be MUCH easier to get to the net. A weak return from anybody is an immediate move-in-an-win. But look at it this way: there are many people now who don't have power but can still run down all of the power hitter's balls and return them well, Their job will be made easier by slower balls.

QUEENLINDSAY
Oct 21st, 2004, 05:28 PM
If we go back to wooden rackets, i would say the players so much versatility would come as a winner. The player with so much touch will be on top. Moreso, the player with the best consistent groundstrokes (hitting it on the sweet spot always) combine with a killer serve will emerge as the winner.

Versatility: Martina Hingis,Kim Clijsters, etc...
Touch: Sugiyama,Raymond,Hingis,Davenport...etc.. players with descent volleys.
Serve and Consistent strokes: Davenport,Pierce,Serena

franny
Oct 21st, 2004, 05:43 PM
How could an injured player be no.1? She retired because of her ankle didn't she? :scratch:
But the thing is the reason her ankle got injured was because of the physical toll of the game. A lot of players would have longer careers with wooden rackets because they wouldn't need to work out as much, train as hard, or run as much. Matches would be much more forgiving on the body because they don't have to absorb as much power and move back and forth/left and right as much. Hingis got injured because of the physical toll of the game that just took too much out of her ankles. With wooden rackets, I doubt that injury would have occured.

Spunky83
Oct 21st, 2004, 06:12 PM
I think the finesse players would benefit SO much that it's indescribable. Because of her serve power, she could hit milions of aces, and with a wooden raquet it would be so much harder so I don't think Serena would be anywhere near the legend she is now.

I'd think the top 6 would be:

1. Myskina (she is the most mentally strong and hits very few UEs)
2. Clijsters (speed)
3. Henin (speed and volleying skills)
4. Dementieva (serve is no longer such a weakness)
5. Sugiyama (speed)
6. Mauresmo (although she couldn't get away with her current service action)

Nice;)...although you shouldn´t forget that out of these players, Myskina is the one whose racquet really helps her game. It´s actually slightly different from the ones you can buy, she mentioned that Head worked on this in order to please her game. Furthermore that racquet has a maximum sweet spot, she manages to hit more than 75 % in that spot which is basically the reason why she never has miss-hits. Schnyder for example only hits 65% in that spot...I really don´t think that anyone of them would be able to play with "ordinary" wooden racquets.

Bacardi
Oct 21st, 2004, 10:46 PM
Hingis retired due to having to keep up with all the power in the game, eliminate the new racquets, replacing them with old and she'd still be playing. In fact I think she'd be No 1 in the world still. Simply because Martina first learned to play with a wooden racquet (actually I did too, by my aunt) and once you learn to use and control something that heavy you pick up a talent that nobody else around today has. The Williams' would be somewhere around 10-15 in the rankings (due to playing so little) and Nav would probably still be top 10. :D

Paldias
Oct 21st, 2004, 10:47 PM
I think that all the power players would be seeing as you need to hit in the center of the racquet to get power, and consistent players like Davenport, Serena, and Venus, and Jennifer do that.

Sugiyama=#1
Oct 21st, 2004, 10:49 PM
Speed is not the only thing that matters. Tactics and volley skills are far more important. Also consistency as well.
If you want to find someone who can master the wooden raquet, I will have to say #1 should be Sugiyama.

Chrissie-fan
Oct 21st, 2004, 10:53 PM
Martina Hingis (if she would still be playing) would be almost unbeatable. Henin would be her closest rival. Capriati would also do well,because even though she can hit the ball very hard,she can also bide her time and keep the ball in play for more than three or four strokes.

....if we still used wooden racquets? :) Of course we'll never know, but I want your opinions :D.....and please don't just gloat your faves :tape::D:D

Chrissie-fan
Oct 21st, 2004, 10:56 PM
Probably not #1,but I agree that Sugiyama would be a force to be reckoned with.

Speed is not the only thing that matters. Tactics and volley skills are far more important. Also consistency as well.
If you want to find someone who can master the wooden raquet, I will have to say #1 should be Sugiyama.

tenn_ace
Oct 21st, 2004, 10:57 PM
Justine would have been #1 - that one is for sure IMO
Loit would have been a lot higher ranked
Sveta should saty close to the top #10 (if not inside)
Venus would suffer one of the biggest drops (if not the most) of all top 10 players
Lindsay should be high, probably top 10
Nastya would drop IMO
Jenn would drop (a lot)

bw2082
Oct 21st, 2004, 11:08 PM
I'd be number one with wooden racquets. And Virginia Wade has wooden hip replacements would that count?

Pam you weren't #1 when you did use wood racquets :haha:

faboozadoo15
Oct 21st, 2004, 11:41 PM
justine would be just as awesome.
davenport and dementieva would the best consistent ball strikers who have quite a lot of versatility.
players like serena and monica would be great in any generation. there's no one who can tell me that players with such drive, tenacity, and timing wouldn't have been great in any era. serena's serve would still be the best, and slow down the play just a touch and imagine the even more acute angles monica would have enjoyed creating :eek:

players who would rise: schnyder, sugiyama, raymond, and molik
players who imo would probably drop a little: it seems unfair to say that players who all rely on new technology would stay right there and others would drop. for instance, i just FEEL that clijsters, myskina, and vera wouldn't be effective with wooden racquets bc they counter punch a lot and play around the baseline and do little else. but i kept dementieva and davenport there. well here's what i feel. back in the day, the attacking style was what won. you rarely won on a lot of your opponents unforced errors. someone forced the issue and was aggressive. i could be wrong about these players, however. retrieing balls 10 feet behind the baseline would have gotten you nowhere, and using someone's pace against them wouldn't have worked as well.

Mr_Molik
Oct 22nd, 2004, 12:23 AM
Number one would be Nicole Pratt- she has a beautiful classic game that is suited to wooden racquets therefore she would dominate.

Doraemon
Oct 22nd, 2004, 12:24 AM
Nicole Pratt :D

Yeah considering her play style (is it even a style?), it wouldn't make any difference using a wooden or graphite racquet.

Marcus1979
Oct 22nd, 2004, 12:47 AM
imagine Hingis using a wooden racquet in her prime.

She would of been untouchable basically.

Shenanigans
Oct 22nd, 2004, 01:26 AM
There would be absolutely no difference in the rankings. An experiment was conducted by the BBC at Wimbledon - ‘The Scud’ was supplied with a wooden racquet and could still serve at the same speed as with today’s racquets.

I agree, I don't think wooden rackets would change that much, a top 100m can run faster than the top 100m runner 20 years ago, this is not just down to the fact that he has better shoes. Through experience they have just learned alot more about training, fitness and diet.

~Sherry~
Oct 22nd, 2004, 01:31 AM
One Nadia Petrova would have the splinters in places of special.

esquímaux
Oct 22nd, 2004, 02:16 AM
Yeah considering her play style (is it even a style?), it wouldn't make any difference using a wooden or graphite racquet.:haha::deathed::haha:

Ryan
Oct 22nd, 2004, 03:34 AM
Ok, I'll give it an objective go. Wooden rackets primarily, would lower the speed of the game. It would also provide the players with a significantly smaller sweetspot, rewarding those who are clean strikers of the ball. Movement wouldn't be as important because even a minimal speed decrease would indredibly benefit Davenport and Pierce. Variety would become more important because hitting the ball hard wouldn't quite do it anymore IMO. It would also set a big gap. Top 20,30-------then everyone else. Now, to focus more on individuals.

Davenport would IMO almost balance out. She is an extremely clean ball striker, has good touch at the net, and hits hard. Her power would decrease, movement would be less important (not too much, but enoguh to give her time to reach some more balls), and she'd be able to make her way into net more IMO. Pierce is in the same boat as her, good striker/bad mover, balance out. To me, these two would be sort of like lesser-Chris Everts in that with less power they wouldn't miss as much, and could chase down more balls.

Mauresmo would benefit because of her amazing variety and net skills, and her good movement. She would definately be a serve-volleyer to maximize her strengths IMO, and would be much better against Dementieva chipping her serve back.;) Now, I also think that when Amelie gets tentative, her shots get loopy and slow. They'd be sitting ducks for someone with decent power and placement. This isn't a huge minus, but it's something that could possibly affect her.

Myskina would be troubled, but not TOO much. She relies on her high-tech racket for power mostly, but she's an excellent mover/consistant most of the time, and she has good variety too. I think she'd be like a Carling Bassett with a big (relatively speaking) backhand, good movement and decent feel. Eep at the serve though.

Henin-Hardenne would suffer IMHO. She has (maybe) the most variety, or ability to execute it successfully and consistantly. She's also a good, aggressive mover. But her power would decrease significantly. Her serve wouldn't be nearly as good, and her groundstrokes would have much less pop. I think she'd get beaten more routinely on hardcourts than nowadays, but porbably a top 5 fixture.

Svetlana/MariaS/Elena. I'm not too sure, but I think Maria would plummet. Pure, uncontained power that benefits from a large sweetspot and advanced technology. She'd be a top 20, maybe top 10 player, but not a consistant Major contender. Elena's serve would be horrendous-er, but her immaculate movement and great groundstrokes would make up for it. Basically, I think she'd be ranked a little lower than she is now because her serve would get her into more trouble than it does now, and I dont find her really consistant. Svetlana is tough. Her serve would be accurate, her groundstrokes would be good, and her movement would be great. I just don't know if she'd be as big a force without her power. So these 3 are tough IMO.

Serena would be in the top 5 most of the time, I really believe. She's too determined, aggressive, and talented not to. If you take away some of her power, she'd still hit harder than most of the tour, and I honestly have a real problem seeing Serena NOT win many matches no matter what. To me, she seems like the type of player to always find a way to win. Take away her power, and I think she'd hit flatter, more accurate, improve her volleys, and kill people with her amazing speed and athletic ability. Top 5, contender at most slams if not #1.

Venus would be top 10 too, the REAL Venus. She'd still have one of THE best backhands, and with a smaller racket she'd be forced to work on her forehand and serve technique. She'd finally get the kinks worked out and be an amazing retriever of balls. Honestly, I think she'd be great on clay.:o She's so fast, and would be another lesser-Chris Evert IMO.

For lower ranked players, Patty Schnyder would undoubtedly catapult up the rankings I think. She has more variety than anyone on the tour, and with less power her spins and angles would have a much bigger impact. I think she could make the top 10 and possibly (gasp) win a major or two, especially at RG.

Bottom line: I think the top 10 would be AMAZINGLY competitive and diverse. I listed several people only as top 5 because I think they'd all have chances to get to #1. I dont think we'd see a long period of domination because the talent pool is very high and we'd see lots of GS winners and #1's.

Volcana
Oct 22nd, 2004, 03:46 AM
But look at it this way: there are many people now who don't have power but can still run down all of the power hitter's balls and return them well, Their job will be made easier by slower balls.But the shots THEY hit would be much shorter, and much easier to hit winners off. It would be target practice for anyone who hits deep with any consistency.

But the big thing to me still is this. High tech racquets give more of an advantage to WEAKER players, not stronger ones. Nadia Petrova would still hit the ball a ton. Anna Smashnova would be overwhelmed. Sure she'd REACH balls. But her returns would land inside the service line. Think of the angles the player moving in would get to hit.

I don't know how many of you have played with wood racquets. I learned tennis on them. You have to appreciate how much slower the ball is going if you don't have the strength to generate pace. The taller players with power would clean house. ANYONE can get to the net against the aerage pro female with a wood racquet. (Of course, most of US would get passed, but we'd get there.) All the players over six feet tall could literally bang an average approach shot, charge the net and dare the opponent to pass them. Outside of Henin-Hardenne, there isn't one player on tour who lobs well enough AND passes well enoughto be successful from the baseline.

On top of that, try to imagine a world where MOST player got to hit at Seles-type angles. That what you get with wooden racquet when you ccan hit with depth. Short balls are REALLY short. Meaning the next shot is hit from with a LOT of short angles to work with.

Nicole Pratt vs Venus Williams is still going to be advantage Williams. How is Pratt going to hit a winner? Venus can just run down everything and wait for a short ball. At the speed the ball travels off a wood racquet, LINDSAY can run down everything and wait for a short ball.

In the 60's (Yes, I learned tennis in the pre-Open era) if you didn't serve-and-volley, you got the ball back with depth and waited for a short ball. You'd slice, you'd topspin, you'd lob, but it was all about waiting til you got a weak return to got to the net off. You put away the NEXT shot. High -tech racquets increased the risk of going to net. Take away that risk, and Bovina is a top ten player.

The other other thing is, the less influence the technology has, the more influence sheer athleticism has. The more influence height has.

esquímaux
Oct 22nd, 2004, 03:54 AM
Thanx Ryan :D

Mr_Molik
Oct 22nd, 2004, 04:06 AM
what makes ppl think ai will suddenly become number 1? shes a solid top 15 player but imo does not have the potentional to be number 1, even with a wooden racquet