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View Full Version : 1999 French Open Final, MARTINA!


-VSR-
May 26th, 2006, 01:40 AM
As I was watching the highlights of the 1999 French Open final, I saw that Martina used an underhanded serve. It surprised everyone, the crowd, Steffi and even me. I didn't know you could do this, well I just thought no one ever would. But it was very well disguised. Martina won the point, and got booed. But it was so weird to see her do this. :lol:

Zauber
May 26th, 2006, 02:04 AM
she got booed not because it was an underhadn serve.
she got booed because you must make sure to give your oppenent a reasonable amount of time to be ready for your serve.
she served this way because she knew that Steffi Graf was not read to receive her serve.
Changing the amount of time you take for your service preparation can surprise your oppenent and therefore not be ready for your serve.
usually professionally out professionally courtesy do not try to use this tactic.
Its bush league and will only be effective once.
Its just a sheap annoyance and tactic that you have to put up with if you are a player.
It certainly should not be expected from and opponent you have faced many tiimes and allways extended the same curtacy to, that is not serving before they are ready.
Quite unacceptable to do it at a critical junction on the worlds greatest stage.
Lippy spoiled brat Martina had a little bit of John Mcenroe in her.
(she used to say a lot of unflattering things about her opponent)
In her case I think it was a case of a wealthy sheltered(in some ways existence)
lack of life experiences (real life)
a very young and sheltered in some ways 16 year old (17 not sure)

Paneru
May 26th, 2006, 02:08 AM
It's a game!
Tatics always come into play.

So long as it's a legal tatic
one should be ready for anything.
And one should not be knocked for
using them.

MC was the man!
Classic move! :cool:

Ryan
May 26th, 2006, 02:12 AM
Ok, so if Pierce decides to serve 5 seconds before she usually does, it's "bush league" and unfair, because her opponent isn't used to it? By that shitty logic, if you hit your first couple forehands crosscourt, you should keep hitting them like that because your opponent is expecting them to go there. Bullshit. I wish more players used underhand serves.

PLP
May 26th, 2006, 02:24 AM
7 years ago...get over it!

The reasons she served that way is because the crowd had already turned against her, she was about to lose the match, and she was desperate...Steffi was ready and It's not illegal>P

UDACHi
May 26th, 2006, 02:56 AM
I can't believe you've never heard of that! :eek:

Anyway, Steffi reacted quite gracefully. :)

-VSR-
May 26th, 2006, 03:15 AM
I, for one, thought it was pretty neat. :D

goodboy
May 26th, 2006, 03:33 AM
I honestly think Martina should have won that final if not for one really bad call. She raised the issue, but the umpire did not listen. An excellent teenager already playing the final of the only grand slam she has never won going even against the ethics of the sport just to get the officials to realize the truth, but was not listened to.

I am not a very avid Hingis fan. Nothing against Graf. Just being objective about this dragging, nagging case. The whole French crowd was just extremely unfair to Martina on that day. The match was hers to lose and she did.

LH2HBH
May 26th, 2006, 03:41 AM
One point doesn't lose a tennis match except for the last one. That's the beauty of tennis. If she had kept her fucking head together she would have won the match.

People have had way worse calls, amateurs, professionals, every day, in every tournament in every grand slam, even in finals.

Sally Struthers
May 26th, 2006, 03:42 AM
so anyhoo... was she right about those calls?

Ackms421
May 26th, 2006, 03:54 AM
Yes, I believe so. The linesperson came down to the line and asked the umpire to come down herself. Based on that, there was definetly some question. I'm pretty sure Hingis was looking at a mark from across the net that would have had to be in for her to cross and lose her mind like that. Nonetheless, it was really an inconsequential point. She was well in the lead by this time and Graf was even looking a bit disheartened prior to the chaos. I thought Hingis had played a *beautiful* match -until that point-. Once again, it really was her match to lose...

--stevo

go hingis
May 26th, 2006, 03:58 AM
I actually think the French Open crowd look for someone to hate in a match. It didn't stop with Martina and it seems like they will boo anyone who questions anything. One minute Cheering for their favs when they're winning but booing when they're losing.

Martina should throw in an underhand serve at this year's FO. LOL, just to get everyone talking.

If Steffi wasn't ready isn't it up to the umpire to replay the point?

Who Umpired this match?

I've read many times that Michael Chang also used the underhand serve, but I don't think anyone said it was unsportsman like (I wasn't following tennis back then so correct me if i'm wrong)

goodboy
May 26th, 2006, 03:59 AM
One point doesn't lose a tennis match except for the last one. That's the beauty of tennis. If she had kept her fucking head together she would have won the match.

People have had way worse calls, amateurs, professionals, every day, in every tournament in every grand slam, even in finals.



Yeah, right. This one coming from a Venus Williams fan. Note: renewed rivalry between MH and VW. It's something like 11-10 h2h in MH's favour.

Again, I am not a Hingis fan and I am not inclined to enter into a debate with any one on who's better - MH or VW. I like them both as they put some interest into tennis. Or I can say I like Serena better than Venus for that matter.

Peace, flyguydsl.

go hingis
May 26th, 2006, 04:00 AM
Didn't Martina want to show the umpire she was looking at the wrong mark altogether?

Zauber
May 26th, 2006, 04:08 AM
Michael Chang served underhand while cramping.
He served in a deliberate matter.
He did not speed it up and try to serve to Lendl while he was getting ready.
Michael chang was a class act and did not try to surprise Lendl in any way.
Lendl could see well ahead of time that Michael Chang was going to serve underhand.
there was no attempt on Changs part to surprise Lendl with a serve he did not see coming and had time to prepare for.
It was one of the most courageous performances in tennis of all timel.
no comparison.

anlavalle
May 26th, 2006, 04:19 AM
legal doesn`t mean it`s the right thing to do :tape:

faboozadoo15
May 26th, 2006, 04:21 AM
Michael Chang served underhand while cramping.
He served in a deliberate matter.
He did not speed it up and try to serve to Lendl while he was getting ready.
Michael chang was a class act and did not try to surprise Lendl in any way.
Lendl could see well ahead of time that Michael Chang was going to serve underhand.
there was no attempt on Changs part to surprise Lendl with a serve he did not see coming and had time to prepare for.
It was one of the most courageous performances in tennis of all timel.
no comparison.
the chang situationa dn hingis's is so different.

but your "what the opponent expects" thing is just whack. should players never throw in a slow wicked slice serve then? should there be no drop shots?

LDVTennis
May 26th, 2006, 04:21 AM
Yes, I believe so. The linesperson came down to the line and asked the umpire to come down herself. Based on that, there was definetly some question. I'm pretty sure Hingis was looking at a mark from across the net that would have had to be in for her to cross and lose her mind like that. Nonetheless, it was really an inconsequential point. She was well in the lead by this time and Graf was even looking a bit disheartened prior to the chaos. I thought Hingis had played a *beautiful* match -until that point-. Once again, it really was her match to lose...

--stevo

It can't be your match to lose if time and again you need other players to make the crucial errors so you can win the match. What else explains the epic losses to Graf and Capriati?

Case in point. Despite that line call, good or bad, Martina still got a chance, mostly due to Steffi's bad play, to serve for the match. Given the chance, did Hingis use her superior serve to ace herself to victory? No! Given the chance, did she use her superior forehand and/or backhand to hit herself to victory? No! Given the chance, did she use her superior volley and transition game, to approach and volley herself to victory? No! She had the chance, but she couldn't take it. And, with her opponent refusing to give it away, what else could she have done? Apparently nothing.

On the contrary, Steffi figured out how to come up with the goods when it most counted. Once Martina showed she couldn't close out the match, Graf went on tear, with her serve, her forehand, and even her slice backhand. Graf had it when it counted because she never once in her career lacked for a big shot, whether it was from her serve or her forehand. Hingis apparently didn't, because more than once she's come up short without a big shot. Hingis never really controlled her destiny that day. She was just too arrogant to realize that.

bssdl
May 26th, 2006, 04:34 AM
The fact is that hingis didn't have enough strength to win over steffi graf in FO.
her abnormal acts show that herself knew that.

Kworb
May 26th, 2006, 04:37 AM
The umpire went to check the mark, but couldn't really find any (obviously indicating it had landed on the line). So she said "well I'm not sure, but the linesman said it was out" and Martina was like "okay so it's a let" and then the umpire was like "point to Steffi" and Martina was like "WTF" and then the whole outburst started with Martina going to Steffi's side of the net and losing another point etc.

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4417724168600909561&q=

go hingis
May 26th, 2006, 04:37 AM
Michael Chang served underhand while cramping.
He served in a deliberate matter.
He did not speed it up and try to serve to Lendl while he was getting ready.
Michael chang was a class act and did not try to surprise Lendl in any way.
Lendl could see well ahead of time that Michael Chang was going to serve underhand.
there was no attempt on Changs part to surprise Lendl with a serve he did not see coming and had time to prepare for.
It was one of the most courageous performances in tennis of all timel.
no comparison.

Thanks for the info, for some reason I thought it was something he did as a tactic in numerous matches not something he did in one match but I guess one time is all it takes and then your branded for life.

bssdl
May 26th, 2006, 04:46 AM
If Steffi wasn't ready isn't it up to the umpire to replay the point?
====================
she needn't to do that.
Champion will not be affected by this kind of trifle.

CanIGetAWhat
May 26th, 2006, 04:53 AM
This was quite a match.

http://hingis.agava.ru/pics/1999/12/fo14.jpg
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/tennis/1999/french_open/news/1999/06/05/hingis_graf/lg_hingis_ap_02.jpg
http://hingis.agava.ru/pics/1999/12/fo16.jpg
http://hingis.agava.ru/pics/1999/12/fo21.jpg
http://hingis.agava.ru/pics/1999/12/fo24.jpg
http://hingis.agava.ru/pics/1999/12/fo25.jpg
http://hingis.agava.ru/pics/1999/12/fo29.jpg

Sharapova's_Boy
May 26th, 2006, 04:57 AM
:sad:

bssdl
May 26th, 2006, 04:58 AM
lol
great pics

PLP
May 26th, 2006, 05:21 AM
The umpire went to check the mark, but couldn't really find any (obviously indicating it had landed on the line). So she said "well I'm not sure, but the linesman said it was out" and Martina was like "okay so it's a let" and then the umpire was like "point to Steffi" and Martina was like "WTF" and then the whole outburst started with Martina going to Steffi's side of the net and losing another point etc.

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4417724168600909561&q=
It was obvious a let should have been called...the umpire made a mistake...anyway, Martina's serve was creative at least :)

dinhd82
May 26th, 2006, 06:49 AM
she got booed not because it was an underhadn serve.
she got booed because you must make sure to give your oppenent a reasonable amount of time to be ready for your serve.
she served this way because she knew that Steffi Graf was not read to receive her serve.
Changing the amount of time you take for your service preparation can surprise your oppenent and therefore not be ready for your serve.
usually professionally out professionally courtesy do not try to use this tactic.
Its bush league and will only be effective once.
Its just a sheap annoyance and tactic that you have to put up with if you are a player.
It certainly should not be expected from and opponent you have faced many tiimes and allways extended the same curtacy to, that is not serving before they are ready.
Quite unacceptable to do it at a critical junction on the worlds greatest stage.
Lippy spoiled brat Martina had a little bit of John Mcenroe in her.
(she used to say a lot of unflattering things about her opponent)
In her case I think it was a case of a wealthy sheltered(in some ways existence)
lack of life experiences (real life)
a very young and sheltered in some ways 16 year old (17 not sure)

So martina should have done a pre-underhand-serve-like motion in order for Steffi to be ready to return the real underhand serve? Was Steffi's hand up when Martina was about to serve? Nope, then it was fair game. She got booed because most of the RG crowd were bunch of idiots.

jamesuk
May 26th, 2006, 07:29 AM
One of my strongest memories , this shot, from all the years I have been watching tennis. It was legal, so I dont agree with all this "unethical" crap.

What a time to do it also!! As another poster said, I wish more players would do it, it would really spice up some matches and take away the predictability of game after game of BOOM BOOM serves.

It was just breathtaking that someone would do this at match point down in a Grand Slam final. I thought it was brilliant, and by Steffi´s face you know she did too. I thought I had seen it all in that match and then martina suddenly pulls out that serve, Ill never forget it!

And I do think too much is made out of it these days thanks to the typical over reaction from that ridiculous crowd. If it had happened at Wimbledon how do you guys think it would have been received? I think it would have just been the usuall oooohhs and ahhhhs with tittering afterwards, little else.

Hingie
May 26th, 2006, 01:24 PM
Oh please delusional people - during that match i saw the worst case of umpiring in all my years of watching tennis. Anne Lassere-Ullrich was looking for the ball mark (and i kid you not) nearly a metre away from where it landed. Martina had to go around and atually point to the right mark but the umpire wasn't having a bar of it! Clearly the WTA thought so too as this was the last match i saw her umpire (but i could be wrong).

And to those who say she was in the lead anyway and it didn't effect the outcome - again - crap! That point caused the crowd to go completely against her and i'm sure having 15,000 booing and cheering your errors was definitely unsettling for her.

Yes Martina was desperate and Steffi picked up her play but take out that incident and there is a strong chance it could have been a different results... but that's in the past.

It would be great to see her right this wrong at RG - if not this year then over the next couple of years.

Martian KC
May 26th, 2006, 01:43 PM
so anyhoo... was she right about those calls?

I don't think we'll ever know.....didn't graf erase the mark with her foot? :o

jj74
May 26th, 2006, 01:53 PM
I remember her doing the same against Brenda Shultz in Aus Open

LoveFifteen
May 26th, 2006, 02:01 PM
I've watched the 99 FO final many times. Steffi was ready to receive that underhanded serve. Martina did nothing illegal, unethical, etc. How absurd to say that ... tennis is a game. And games include guile, strategy and surprise.

Steffi complimented Martina for her underhanded serve in the post-match interview. She didn't think it was unsporting.

I wish more tennis players would throw in underhanded serves. It's perfectly allowable, and it's a great element of surprise. The French Open crowd is the worst crowd in tennis. They booed for over 10 minutes last year during the Grosjean-Nadal match ... it's like the French Open crowd just gets off on booing and being negative. Yes, Martina was a brat that day, but the French Open crowd was classless, too.

Carmen Mairena
May 26th, 2006, 02:05 PM
Sad pictures, but it was a childish show from Martina. I'm sorry she had to pass through such a tough time. :hug:

Philip
May 26th, 2006, 02:47 PM
I love this match :p
And thats why i have it on DVD :lol:
Love it when Steffi goes "are we here to play tennis or stand about chit chat for a while?"

:D

Vincent
May 26th, 2006, 02:48 PM
Martina :sad:

Why not using underarm serve as it's totally legal and can start a point ended up winning it? :)

LoveFifteen
May 26th, 2006, 02:51 PM
If Marti knows what's good for her, she'll never, ever serve underhanded at the French Open again.

Kart
May 26th, 2006, 02:54 PM
Steffi was smiling at the underhand serve and if she wasn't bothered I don't see why everyone else is now seven years later.

Seeing those pictures bring back memories.

I loved seeing Steffi win - I had been cheering so hard - but it wasn't worth it to see Martina in tears.

Sad way to end the match.

MisterQ
May 26th, 2006, 04:05 PM
She played that point very well... the underhand serve worked largely because Martina closed in behind it, anticipating where Steffi would be forced to hit it, and volleyed it to win the point.

I think Martina waited plenty of time to serve that point. It's the type of shot which needs some disguise to be effective (like a drop shot).

That was a wild match, just bizarre! :lol:

LoveFifteen
May 26th, 2006, 04:11 PM
Martina did wait plenty of time on that point, and Steffi's smile said it all, "That sneaky little tart!" :lol:

PerfectForm
May 26th, 2006, 04:13 PM
Actually, I think that an underhand serve can be an interesting addtion to today's game instead of Big serves all the time. It definately will keep the opponent guessing what serve he/she is going to receive. Maybe Elena D. should consider the underhand serve, lol.

patricio
May 26th, 2006, 04:17 PM
I honestly think Martina should have won that final if not for one really bad call. She raised the issue, but the umpire did not listen. An excellent teenager already playing the final of the only grand slam she has never won going even against the ethics of the sport just to get the officials to realize the truth, but was not listened to.

I am not a very avid Hingis fan. Nothing against Graf. Just being objective about this dragging, nagging case. The whole French crowd was just extremely unfair to Martina on that day. The match was hers to lose and she did.
Oh come on, hingis was a little Girl and she played like an asshole that day and Steffi once even had to go to the umpire and say "Are we going to play tennis?" because she kept behaving like an idiot.

I hate all these fans that do not recognize when their idols act like morons.

Justine Fan
May 26th, 2006, 04:18 PM
For those who didn't see Martina accepting the line call etc, here it is:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4417724168600909561&q=steffi+graf

UDACHi
May 26th, 2006, 04:25 PM
I'll never understand why she mentally fell apart in that match. :shrug:

MisterQ
May 26th, 2006, 04:27 PM
For those who didn't see Martina accepting the line call etc, here it is:

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4417724168600909561&q=steffi+graf

thanks

Incidentally, that Seles-Graf point on that page is amazing! :worship: