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View Full Version : Best Australian Open Final, 1993 #1 Seles vs #2 Graff???


SpiderWeb
Jan 13th, 2007, 11:50 PM
Best Australian Open Final (women's), 1993 #1 Seles vs #2 Graff???

Was this the best Australian women's final in the Open Era?

LeRoy.
Jan 13th, 2007, 11:52 PM
quality wise yes

drama wise - AO 2002 final takes the cake

AjdeNate!
Jan 14th, 2007, 12:15 AM
*sigh* The ace down the middle at break point at 2-3 in the third.... Monica was on a mission from that saved break point to the title.

vswfan
Jan 14th, 2007, 02:22 AM
best finals
1993 AO final is great
2002 final is the most dramatic one
2003 final is great too, a lot of rallies and emotions

worst finals
2004 everyone remembers that bad call for Kim at 3*-4 final set :(
2005 Lindsay was totally off in the final set, its amazing to me
2006 JHH has too many UEs when she on court, then she retired lol

hingis-seles
Jan 14th, 2007, 02:31 AM
Nothing comes close to the 1993 final. John Barett stated after the match that he believed it was the greatest women's tennis match he had ever seen, up to that point in time. The quality was very high, which was astounding considering how hard Steffi and Monica hit and how close to the lines they hit. Steffi fought valiantly, but Monica was in a class of her own and would have none of it. :worship:

Steffica Greles
Jan 14th, 2007, 02:32 AM
http://youtube.com/watch?v=0ShyrIomAUc

faboozadoo15
Jan 14th, 2007, 02:48 AM
it's got my vote. ;)

SpiderWeb
Jan 14th, 2007, 03:18 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UTXIV0JNYTc

LDVTennis
Jan 14th, 2007, 03:56 AM
Only to Seles fans. And, only because Seles won the match.

Steffi played quite poorly in the second, and especially in the third set. If I remember correctly, Seles won more points in the third set from Steffi's unforced errors than her own outright winners.

If you want an example of a closely contested match between these two, the best example would be the '98 WTA Championship Quarters. Everything about that match except the first set was a fight to the finish.

SpiderWeb
Jan 14th, 2007, 04:05 AM
Only to Seles fans. And, only because Seles won the match.

Steffi played quite poorly in the second, and especially in the third set. If I remember correctly, Seles won more points in the third set from Steffi's unforced errors than her own outright winners.

If you want an example of a closely contested match between these two, the best example would be the '98 WTA Championship Quarters. Everything about that match except the first set was a fight to the finish.

Only Stefanie Graff fans could not appreciate the very high quality of the this historic classic match as Monica Seles was going for her third consecutive Australian Open crown and still remained the undisputed #1 player in the world. And, only because as expected, the undisputed #2 player in the world Steffi Graff lost decisively in the third and final set 2-6 as well as losing 3 of her 5 Grand Slam matches against Seles.

This was the match the proved to the world why Monica Seles was #1 and why Stefanie Graff was not.

SpiderWeb
Jan 14th, 2007, 04:08 AM
Seles, Bold as Ever, Punches Past Graf
International Herald Tribune
Monday, February 1, 1993

It has become one of the sporting cliches of the 1990s: Monica Seles with warmup jacket neatly zipped up, clutching a large silver trophy as a horde of photographers jostle for a clear view.
.
The scene was replayed Saturday at Flinders Park, just as it has been replayed before at Roland Garros and Flushing Meadow.
.
"I never thought I'd do so well in Grand Slams," Seles said after beating Steffi Graf, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2, to win her third straight Australian Open.
.
Few have done so well so young. At 19, Seles has won eight Grand Slam singles titles, including seven of the last nine. The only leg to so far escape her is Wimbledon, where she did not play in 1991 and where Graf beat her in straight sets in 1992.
.
As for the other three Slams, the novelty is long gone. With her two-fisted ground strokes, two-toned grunt and remarkable will, Seles is more than a formidable shotmaker. She is a psychological force.
.
"It is her desire and her incredible self-confidence," said Graf, asked why Seles is so difficult to beat.
.
Saturday's match was in some respects of higher quality than last year's memorable French Open final, in which Seles beat Graf, 10-8, in the third set.
.
The standard of play Saturday was consistently high from the start and Graf was considerably less erratic from the baseline than in Paris. As a rule, points were won, rather than lost.
.
"With Steffi, we both hit the ball so hard and go for our shots," Seles said. "You cannot let your mind go for a minute or you've got a winner whizzing past you."
.
The outcome hinged on the sixth and seventh games of the final set. Serving at 2-3 and 30-0, Graf hit a lovely serve wide to Seles' backhand and was rewarded with a ferocious crosscourt return that landed smack on the line.
.
Two points later, Seles hit another bolt off the forehand side to get her first break-point opportunity of the set. Graf saved it by winning a baseline rally.
.
But the momentum was visibly shifting, as Seles fearlessly continued chasing balls down in the corners and going for her shots. She finally got the break and a 4-2 lead when Graf nailed a forehand just long.
.
"I knew whoever got the break in the third set, it would be quite important," Seles said. Indeed, it meant the match, as Seles finished out the set holding her serve and breaking Graf.

Graf didn't help her own cause by repeating her French Open mistake and attempting to beat Seles almost exclusively from the baseline.

CrossCourt~Rally
Jan 14th, 2007, 08:37 AM
Seles, Bold as Ever, Punches Past Graf
International Herald Tribune
Monday, February 1, 1993

It has become one of the sporting cliches of the 1990s: Monica Seles with warmup jacket neatly zipped up, clutching a large silver trophy as a horde of photographers jostle for a clear view.
.
The scene was replayed Saturday at Flinders Park, just as it has been replayed before at Roland Garros and Flushing Meadow.
.
"I never thought I'd do so well in Grand Slams," Seles said after beating Steffi Graf, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2, to win her third straight Australian Open.
.
Few have done so well so young. At 19, Seles has won eight Grand Slam singles titles, including seven of the last nine. The only leg to so far escape her is Wimbledon, where she did not play in 1991 and where Graf beat her in straight sets in 1992.
.
As for the other three Slams, the novelty is long gone. With her two-fisted ground strokes, two-toned grunt and remarkable will, Seles is more than a formidable shotmaker. She is a psychological force.
.
"It is her desire and her incredible self-confidence," said Graf, asked why Seles is so difficult to beat.
.
Saturday's match was in some respects of higher quality than last year's memorable French Open final, in which Seles beat Graf, 10-8, in the third set.
.
The standard of play Saturday was consistently high from the start and Graf was considerably less erratic from the baseline than in Paris. As a rule, points were won, rather than lost.
.
"With Steffi, we both hit the ball so hard and go for our shots," Seles said. "You cannot let your mind go for a minute or you've got a winner whizzing past you."
.
The outcome hinged on the sixth and seventh games of the final set. Serving at 2-3 and 30-0, Graf hit a lovely serve wide to Seles' backhand and was rewarded with a ferocious crosscourt return that landed smack on the line.
.
Two points later, Seles hit another bolt off the forehand side to get her first break-point opportunity of the set. Graf saved it by winning a baseline rally.
.
But the momentum was visibly shifting, as Seles fearlessly continued chasing balls down in the corners and going for her shots. She finally got the break and a 4-2 lead when Graf nailed a forehand just long.
.
"I knew whoever got the break in the third set, it would be quite important," Seles said. Indeed, it meant the match, as Seles finished out the set holding her serve and breaking Graf.

Graf didn't help her own cause by repeating her French Open mistake and attempting to beat Seles almost exclusively from the baseline.

The greatest ever :worship:

PLP
Jan 14th, 2007, 10:33 AM
I would put 2002 slightly ahead, simply for the drama and sheer will that both Jen and Martina showed by even staying on the court. That was an insane moment in recent tennis history but it was also amazing!

1. 2002 Jen Def. Martina, DRAMA!
2. 1993 Monica Def. Graf, Monica at her peak!
3. 2003 Serena Def. Venus, Completed Serena Slam! Very close match...

AnnaK_4ever
Jan 14th, 2007, 04:14 PM
:p

Hingis - Capriati, 2002 - all the way!

So tough conditions, so much drama and HUGE fight from Jennifer!

Monica_Rules
Jan 14th, 2007, 04:20 PM
The Aus open final is the best match i've seen from thatv era. I have it on tape and watched it not long ago.

After the first set Seles just gets better than graf and graf gets frustrated cos monica keeps getting her shots back or comes up with some amazing shots. Not sure bout the stats, i'm pretty sure Monica hit more than 5 winners in that final set.

Steffica Greles
Jan 14th, 2007, 07:20 PM
Graf did always make a great deal of errors against Seles. That is true.

But there were reasons for that. Almost all of Graf's errors were from her forehand side. Seles pinned Graf in her backband corner so effectively that when she did get opportunities to attack, she often over pressed.

Furthermore, Seles would often attack Graf's forehand corner when she was least expecting it. Graf was such a fine athlete that she was almost always in position, but on rare occasions when she was not, her technique did not enable her to hit sideways-on forehands on the run, as Capriati was famed for. Plus, when attacked, her late takeback in her forehand technique was such that sometimes she did not have time to measure her shots or get the correct connection.

Graf's serves were often inconsistent against Seles, because she was under such pressure to get first serves against a player who could fire winners at will from second serves.

Graf fanatics will deny all of this, of course. But there were reasons why Graf could not find the form against Seles that she did against the likes of Sabatini and Sanchez-Vicario.

LDVTennis
Jan 14th, 2007, 08:43 PM
For you to not give Gunther Parche his rightful place...


These words are very similar to those of a poster who has been banned numerous times from this board.

Graf fans do not respond to this person. Just report his or her activity to the moderators of this board.

steffiforever
Jan 14th, 2007, 08:57 PM
Well my two cents worth....as a HUGE Steffi fan I would say this match was a up there as one of the best matches ever in the AUSSIE open; however i dont think you can be the heat, drama, saving 4 match points of the 2002 final with Cap beating Hingis!! 1993's final was good quality hitting up until Seles got the break in the 3rd set, after that Steffi's error's were her downfall and Seles remained resilient till the end. A good match that i still watch occasionally even well after 10 years since it was played. I still keep hoping though that someday Steffi will end up the winner...lol...

Tenis Srbija
Jan 14th, 2007, 09:06 PM
This was the best final ever :worship:

LDVTennis
Jan 14th, 2007, 09:29 PM
Graf did always make a great deal of errors against Seles. That is true.

But there were reasons for that. Almost all of Graf's errors were from her forehand side. Seles pinned Graf in her backband corner so effectively that when she did get opportunities to attack, she often over pressed.

Furthermore, Seles would often attack Graf's forehand corner when she was least expecting it. Graf was such a fine athlete that she was almost always in position, but on rare occasions when she was not, her technique did not enable her to hit sideways-on forehands on the run, as Capriati was famed for. Plus, when attacked, her late takeback in her forehand technique was such that sometimes she did not have time to measure her shots or get the correct connection.

Graf's serves were often inconsistent against Seles, because she was under such pressure to get first serves against a player who could fire winners at will from second serves.

Graf fanatics will deny all of this, of course. But there were reasons why Graf could not find the form against Seles that she did against the likes of Sabatini and Sanchez-Vicario.

So, someone posts the statistics from the third set, showing that Graf had more unforced errors than Seles had winners, and this is your response.

Your argument is ridiculous. Graf made a great deal of unforced errors against other players too, not just Seles. It wasn't her norm, but it happened, usually against players who forced her to be consistent. In that sense, Seles was no different than Sanchez-Vicario or Coetzer.

Graf's game was an extremely high risk game. When it worked, as it often did, despite the odds, she could smash any opponent at any time. She sure smashed Seles at the '92 Wimbledon, at the '96 US Open, and in the last two sets of the '99 French Semi.

When it didn't quite work, her smarter opponents knew they could test her by keeping their unforced errors down and forcing her to play one more shot. That was fundamentally Seles' base strategy against Graf. That is precisely what the statistics of the third set at the '93 AO demonstrate.

That is not to deny that Seles didn't try one or two other things against Graf. As you have pointed out, she did try to attack Steffi's deep forehand corner. But, it was not always a winning strategy for her, as was proven more times than not. Seles' best shot to the deep forehand corner was her crosscourt backhand. But, when Steffi played smart, she would direct most of the balls to Seles' forehand (clearly Seles' weaker shot). In some key matches, Seles came up quite short when she tried to go down the line with her forehand to Steffi's deep forehand corner. For example, look how inept Seles looks in the windy conditions of the '99 French Semi when she tries to hit dtl forehands off of Steffi's inside-out forehands and crosscourt slice backhands.

As to the technique on Steffi's forehand, you really should watch more of her matches. Begin with that '99 French Semi, which it is clear now you've never watched. In that match, Steffi has no trouble hitting sideways, on the run, with her forehand. In the American broadcast of the match for USA Network, in fact, you can't miss the moments when she hits the shots because they appear in replay (3 times). During one of those replays, Tracy Austin comments on Steffi's ability to hit those running forehands because of her sprinter's speed.

As to how consistent Graf's serve was against Seles, why do you generalize so liberally? if it was so inconsistent, explain to me why in the '92 Wimbledon Final, Steffi's percentage of second serve points won by the second game of the second set was 100%, an incredible statistic. If it was so inconsistent, explain to me how Steffi managed to hit 10+ aces against Seles in a rather perfunctory win against Seles in the '96 US Open. To be sure, when Steffi struggled against Seles, Steffi sometimes did not serve well. But, that is also true of her play when she struggled against Sabatini or Martina N.

Try watching more of Steffi's matches, you might learn something...

hingis-seles
Jan 20th, 2007, 06:49 AM
Yawn.