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View Full Version : Seles' finest hour - Australia 1993 (high quality youtube footage)


Steffica Greles
Feb 14th, 2010, 12:52 PM
The BBC commentator, John Barrett, said on several occasions that he believed Seles was the best he'd ever seen after this match. It's certainly one of the greatest performances I think I've seen, even watching it all these years later. Graf was playing well, and took the first set definantly. Seles then raised her game to levels even she'd not reached before to respond to the threat. It was the mark of a true champion.

You get fascinating glimpses of what might have been. Graf was still the better athlete, but it was clear Seles had narrowed the gap in key areas where Graf held the advantage. Meanwhile, she'd maintained the gap in areas where she was better. Seles served far more aces (8, I think). She was, by this time, taller than Graf. She was almost as quick, if you watch closely, showing some brilliant defensive skills. She took the ball out of the air more times than Graf. Her volleys were developing. She was attacking the Graf forehand, and hitting more shots with one hand.

Graf was a player with so much wherewithal to respond to these challenges, and we must remember that when we speculate about what might have been had the stabbing not occurred. But in terms of looking at the course on which Seles was headed before she was forced out, then you MUST start with this.

She didn't even look surprised when she won.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LsMT4bSu1v4 (1)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-nO8NDRtsUE&feature=related (2)


Over all, Seles had found a new level in early 1993.

AjdeNate!
Feb 14th, 2010, 01:00 PM
The ace in the 3rd set down break point gave me chills.

Picalv
Feb 14th, 2010, 02:30 PM
I miss her so much..

hingis-seles
Feb 14th, 2010, 04:27 PM
John Barrett even spoke of this match when commentating their 1999 QF - he stated that it was the best women's match at the Australian Open he'd ever seen.

When people reflect on Seles of 91-92, they think that she had maximized her potential - but the Seles of 1993, as briefly as we saw her, was sublime. She'd disposed of Sabatini 6-3, 6-1 in the semifinals and it seemed no one besides Graf at Wimbledon could stand in her way at the majors, in the short run ofcourse. And after this performance, even that did not seem a certainty as it had in 1992.

I have often wondered whether this loss hurt Graf more than the 1992 loss in Paris. She had said before the match it was going to be special - and she was right. They both went after it and Seles ran away with it in the end - Steffi's final service game in this match, it almost seemed like she was mentally defeated.

And what Athenaeum said.

I'm still trying to find a copy of this match with American commentators - Mary Carillo made ome insightful remarks about Seles, and her position in women's tennis at the time.

dscho99
Feb 14th, 2010, 04:50 PM
The BBC commentator, John Barrett, said on several occasions that he believed Seles was the best he'd ever seen after this match. It's certainly one of the greatest performances I think I've seen, even watching it all these years later. Graf was playing well, and took the first set definantly. Seles then raised her game to levels even she'd not reached before to respond to the threat. It was the mark of a true champion.

You get fascinating glimpses of what might have been. Graf was still the better athlete, but it was clear Seles had narrowed the gap in key areas where Graf held the advantage. Meanwhile, she'd maintained the gap in areas where she was better. Seles served far more aces (8, I think). She was, by this time, taller than Graf. She was almost as quick, if you watch closely, showing some brilliant defensive skills. She took the ball out of the air more times than Graf. Her volleys were developing. She was attacking the Graf forehand, and hitting more shots with one hand.

Graf was a player with so much wherewithal to respond to these challenges, and we must remember that when we speculate about what might have been had the stabbing not occurred. But in terms of looking at the course on which Seles was headed before she was forced out, then you MUST start with this.

She didn't even look surprised when she won.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LsMT4bSu1v4 (1)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-nO8NDRtsUE&feature=related (2)


Over all, Seles had found a new level in early 1993.


This one match was one of Monica's finest.
On her best surface and on Steffi's worst - slow hard-court.
In January-April 1993 Monica won 15 of 16 matches and lost 6 sets.
In January-April 1992 she won 26 of 27 matches but lost only 4 sets.

No opinion.
Just facts.
:wavey:


BTW, how many sets did Seles win against Graf on fast courts pre-stabbing?
Right.
Zero.

Mary Cherry.
Feb 14th, 2010, 04:53 PM
I wish I was old enough to have seen Seles in her prime.

I'm currently half-way through her book - great read. It's amazing that she even returned to the tour after what happened, let alone ended up winning another slam.

dscho99
Feb 14th, 2010, 04:56 PM
John Barrett even spoke of this match when commentating their 1999 QF - he stated that it was the best women's match at the Australian Open he'd ever seen. ...



I remember Graf doing herself in in the last set.
Tons of unforced errors. Although she hit more winners even in this 2-6 set.
Seles played very consistent, though. And hit some great serves.

CrossCourt~Rally
Feb 14th, 2010, 04:57 PM
Thanks for posting. Monica is by far my fave tennis player of all time :hearts:. Such a shame her career was halted in her prime with the stabbing tragedy. God knows how many more slams she would have won over the next few years :hug:

dscho99
Feb 14th, 2010, 04:58 PM
Thanks for posting. Monica is by far my fave tennis player of all time :hearts:. Such a shame her career was halted in her prime with the stabbing tragedy. God knows how many more slams she would have won over the next few years :hug:


She came back to the tour in 1995, aged just 21.
Same age Navratilova won her first slam.

Shinjiro
Feb 14th, 2010, 05:00 PM
thx. Nice vids!

Steffica Greles
Feb 14th, 2010, 05:12 PM
She came back to the tour in 1995, aged just 21.
Same age Navratilova won her first slam.

If Graf had been stabbed in March 1990, not to return until September 1992, don't bet that she'd have still won all those titles in the rest of the 1990s. Interruptions break momentum and allow the rot to set in.

dabossK
Feb 14th, 2010, 05:45 PM
Graf's backhand was one of the most disgusting shots in tennis history.

dscho99
Feb 14th, 2010, 05:48 PM
If Graf had been stabbed in March 1990, not to return until September 1992, don't bet that she'd have still won all those titles in the rest of the 1990s. Interruptions break momentum and allow the rot to set in.


Of course interruptions break momentum.
And Seles had gained a lot of weight.
The emotional stress caused by the stabbing and - what many Seles fans try to downplay - her father dying of cancer worsened her pre-existing eating disorder problems.

I don't think that Graf would have been out for more than 2 years because of a stabbing, BTW.

But I really don't want to dive into the abyss of Seles-Graf-stabbing controversies. Let's agree that the stabbing influenced the history of women's tennis. As did Connolly's riding accident, Graf's multiple injuries and family problems, Tracy Austin's career-ending injury and Capriati's drug problems.

dscho99
Feb 14th, 2010, 05:49 PM
Graf's backhand was one of the most disgusting shots in tennis history.


According to a poll among her opponents?

Shinjiro
Feb 14th, 2010, 05:56 PM
ahah.

hingis-seles
Feb 14th, 2010, 06:02 PM
The emotional stress caused by the stabbing and - what many Seles fans try to downplay - her father dying of cancer worsened her pre-existing eating disorder problems.

Losing her father definitely had an impact on her career - I can't see why anyone would try to downplay it. The stabbing changed the course of her career - her mental approach to the game would never be the same. But her father was the architect of her game, and no coach could ever replace him.

ce
Feb 14th, 2010, 06:05 PM
Seles :sad:
oh how many more slams would she have won :sad:

Steffica Greles
Feb 14th, 2010, 06:16 PM
What I find most interesting is that Seles seemed more effective against Graf on this surface than even on clay. More of her best shots were winners.


Seles had reached the Wimbledon final the previous year, defeating Navratilova who was still the second best player on grass, at a height of a couple of inches shorter and in far more frail condition. Her serve was more easily attackable, and she was not able to hit the ball as hard as she was by Australia 1993.


Looking at this performance, I think on a hot finals day (as it turned out to be that year) Seles would have been a real threat.

LeRoy.
Feb 14th, 2010, 06:32 PM
According to a poll among her opponents?

Hi Calimero377 :wavey:

Enjoy your short stay with us ! :bounce:

Olórin
Feb 14th, 2010, 06:37 PM
Hi Calimero377 :wavey:

Enjoy your short stay with us ! :bounce:

I don't understand why the mods/admins take so long to a re-ban previously banned-troll, possessing multiple accounts on the board yet find the time to ban an established poster of many years. Moronic decision-making.

Matt01
Feb 14th, 2010, 07:03 PM
This one match was one of Monica's finest.
On her best surface and on Steffi's worst - slow hard-court.
In January-April 1993 Monica won 15 of 16 matches and lost 6 sets.
In January-April 1992 she won 26 of 27 matches but lost only 4 sets.

No opinion.
Just facts.
:wavey:


BTW, how many sets did Seles win against Graf on fast courts pre-stabbing?
Right.
Zero.


One word: Troll.

No opinion.
Just fact.
:wavey:

Steffica Greles
Feb 14th, 2010, 07:10 PM
I don't think anyone's said anything troll-ish at all. Amazing how pathetic people can be.


I thought they were reasonable contributions.

Apoleb
Feb 14th, 2010, 07:31 PM
What I find most interesting is that Seles seemed more effective against Graf on this surface than even on clay. More of her best shots were winners.



I'm not sure what is very interesting about that. Rebound Ace was Graf's worst surface because it's very hard to keep the slice low, and it was quite prone for the attack. On clay she can use it as a magnificent tool for rally construction and moving her opponent all over the court (depth, angles, short, drop shots -- whatever you want) which she did so effectively for example against Hingis in the second set of the final. Had the AO surface been the current one, I think it would've been a different story.

edit: And from those clips it seemed Seles had a pretty good idea what to do. Keep going to the bh until you get the shot that will stand up enough to dominate the rally.

Nico_E
Feb 14th, 2010, 07:33 PM
Yep, she was awesome

it was a pity that ego maniac Graf paid the guy to take her out so she could hog all the GS's back again

dsanders06
Feb 14th, 2010, 07:41 PM
It's interesting to speculate, but at the same time, hypotheticals are irrelevant if we're analysing the greatest players ever. In other words, when we're discussing who the GOAT is, it's inappropriate to apply an asterisk to Graf's 22 Slams on the basis of speculation about how many Slams Seles could've taken away from her. If we apply that asterisk, there's no limit to how many hypotheticals we can speculate could've potentially altered the course of tennis history. What if Martina Navratilova had been in a car crash at the age of 20? What if Roger Federer had given up tennis at the age of 12 (like he very nearly did)? Would Federer have ever won the French Open if Nadal had never got injured last year?

It's a shame for Seles, but ultimately, what happened happened, and we can't bring speculation into cold sporting analysis.

moby
Feb 14th, 2010, 07:44 PM
It's interesting to speculate, but at the same time, hypotheticals are irrelevant if we're analysing the greatest players ever. In other words, when we're discussing who the GOAT is, it's inappropriate to apply an asterisk to Graf's 22 Slams on the basis of speculation about how many Slams Seles could've taken away from her. If we apply that asterisk, there's no limit to how many hypotheticals we can speculate could've potentially altered the course of tennis history. What if Martina Navratilova had been in a car crash at the age of 20? What if Roger Federer had given up tennis at the age of 12 (like he very nearly did)? Would Federer have ever won the French Open if Nadal had never got injured last year?There's a difference between an injury due to bad luck or an accident, and a premeditated attack carried out for the explicit purpose of taking you out of the game (or killing you) so that your rival can dominate. I think the motivation is what irks most people. As far as tennis history goes, of course, it wouldn't have made a difference if Monica was taken out by a bad car accident. But, she wasn't.

Everyone agrees that Connolly would probably have dominated tennis through the 50s if not for her horseriding accident... but no one puts as asterisk on those who won slams in her absence. :shrug:

Apoleb
Feb 14th, 2010, 07:50 PM
I think it's a little silly to give Seles a free pass for her post-stabbing career and doubt everything Graf did in that period. Seles had a whole second career (came back at 21) to keep on achieving and winning. Yes, the circumstances were horrible, but it's not like past champions have had a free ride either. It is what it is, and I think it's only fair for the records to be dealt with the way they are.

Midnight_Robber
Feb 14th, 2010, 07:53 PM
Wel... I certainly enjoyed that clip. Seles' backhand was :drool:

dsanders06
Feb 14th, 2010, 07:58 PM
I think it's a little silly to give Seles a free pass for her post-stabbing career and doubt everything Graf did in that period. Seles had a whole second career (came back at 21) to keep on achieving and winning. Yes, the circumstances were horrible, but it's not like past champions have had a free ride either. It is what it is, and I think it's only fair for the records to be dealt with the way they are.

Exactly.

And a good point you make too about Seles having a full second career. I mean, there can definitely be no denigrating the 4 Slams Graf won after Seles had returned... even if Seles was still dealing with post-traumatic stress, she was still there and competing at a high-level, so Graf's wins from the 95 USO onwards are certainly legit. And also, there can't be any denigrating Graf's 2 Wimbledon victories in Seles's absence (if we're saying what happened between 1991 and 1993 would definitely have been repeated afterwards, then logically, it's only fair to assume Seles would've posed no threat to Graf there). So that means that, even if we are applying these hypotheticals, the only Slams we're penalising Graf is the FO and USO in 93, the 94AO and the 95FO, leaving Graf with 18 Slams. AND not to mention, if we're applying silly asterisks, it's only fair to speculate about whether Graf could've won more Slams had she not retired at the relatively early age of 30, especially considering she'd made the finals at the two most recent Slams.

moby
Feb 14th, 2010, 08:01 PM
I think it's a little silly to give Seles a free pass for her post-stabbing career and doubt everything Graf did in that period. Seles had a whole second career (came back at 21) to keep on achieving and winning. Yes, the circumstances were horrible, but it's not like past champions have had a free ride either. It is what it is, and I think it's only fair for the records to be dealt with the way they are.The fact that Seles came back at the age of 21 at all to have a "lacklustre" second career is a victory in itself for her, and her record thereafter should not be held against her. I can only imagine how psychologically damaging it can be when you're stabbed for wanting to the best at what you do. What kind of reward or motivation is that for wanting to continue to be the best? It was especially damaging for Seles because the mental part of the game was her strongest weapon. That ace to save breakpoint at 3-2 in the third set in that clip is eerily similar to the second serve ace Serena hit to hold serve at 3-2 in the third set just three weeks ago.

The records are dealt with the way they are. Monica remains stuck at 9 slams. Steffi will always have the 22 slams, and as long as tennis is played, Monica's name, Parche, the stabbing, and the "what if" will always be mentioned as a footnote in Steffi's record. Parche really robbed both Monica and Steffi; the former from being able to play her best tennis, the latter from being able to respond to the challenge by the newcomer.

Apoleb
Feb 14th, 2010, 08:05 PM
Exactly.

And a good point you make too about Seles having a full second career. I mean, there can definitely be no denigrating the 4 Slams Graf won after Seles had returned... even if Seles was still dealing with post-traumatic stress, she was still there and competing at a high-level, so Graf's wins from the 95 USO onwards are certainly legit. And also, there can't be any denigrating Graf's 2 Wimbledon victories in Seles's absence (if we're saying what happened between 1991 and 1993 would definitely have been repeated afterwards, then logically, it's only fair to assume Seles would've posed no threat to Graf there). So that means that, even if we are applying these hypotheticals, the only Slams we're penalising Graf is the FO and USO in 93, the 94AO and the 95FO, leaving Graf with 18 Slams. AND not to mention, if we're applying silly asterisks, it's only fair to speculate about whether Graf could've won more Slams had she not retired at the relatively early age of 30, especially considering she'd made the finals at the two most recent Slams.

Even those.. she did not win them by taking strolls in the park and putting butter on her pizza (:tape:. Very cheap shot I know, but I'm just joking). She had to fend off one of the best clay court players in recent history, twice, with an 8-6 in a third set. On top of fighting off career-threatening injuries in her back. It's extremely unfair for her and for the rest of the players to put an "asterik" next to her name. Everything stands in my book. One could also wonder what would have happened if her father wasn't an asshole and if she didn't have to miss two years right after she was playing the best tennis in her career at 96, and when the game was clearly transitioning.

dsanders06
Feb 14th, 2010, 08:07 PM
The fact that Seles came back at the age of 22 at all is a victory in itself for her, and her record thereafter should not be held against her. I can only imagine how psychologically damaging it can be when you're stabbed for wanting to the best at what you do. What kind of reward or motivation is that for wanting to continue to be the best?.

Oh I agree. It was certainly a huge victory for Seles just to ever step on a tennis court again. But still, hypotheticals just can't be taken into account when it's a pure analytical discussion. Would Graf have won 22 Slams had Seles not got stabbed? Probably not (although I do think she would've ended up with more Slams than Seles). But discussing a parallel universe where Seles didn't get stabbed is just as fruitful as discussing a parallel universe where Federer gave up tennis as a child.

hingis-seles
Feb 14th, 2010, 08:07 PM
It's interesting to speculate, but at the same time, hypotheticals are irrelevant if we're analysing the greatest players ever. In other words, when we're discussing who the GOAT is, it's inappropriate to apply an asterisk to Graf's 22 Slams on the basis of speculation about how many Slams Seles could've taken away from her. If we apply that asterisk, there's no limit to how many hypotheticals we can speculate could've potentially altered the course of tennis history. What if Martina Navratilova had been in a car crash at the age of 20? What if Roger Federer had given up tennis at the age of 12 (like he very nearly did)? Would Federer have ever won the French Open if Nadal had never got injured last year?

It's a shame for Seles, but ultimately, what happened happened, and we can't bring speculation into cold sporting analysis.

Absolutely.

You forgot to mention not placing an asterisk next to Margaret Court's 11 Australian Open titles. We can't indulge in hypotheticals and speculation in cold sporting analysis. And with the most GS titles in tennis history (singles as well as overall), the highest winning percentage in history, completing the boxed set twice (pre and post Open era), as well as a Grand Slam amongst her records, I don't see how anyone can look past Court as the GOAT. She has all the numbers. Discussing Seles, Graf, Navratilova, and Evert in such discussions almost seems unnecessary.

moby
Feb 14th, 2010, 08:16 PM
Oh I agree. It was certainly a huge victory for Seles just to ever step on a tennis court again. But still, hypotheticals just can't be taken into account when it's a pure analytical discussion. Would Graf have won 22 Slams had Seles not got stabbed? Probably not (although I do think she would've ended up with more Slams than Seles). But discussing a parallel universe where Seles didn't get stabbed is just as fruitful as discussing a parallel universe where Federer gave up tennis as a child.I think the biggest part of this discussion is not so much whether Graf would have ended up with more slams than Seles (I agree that probably she would have), but whether she would would have ended up with more slams than Navratilova. Since singles GOAT discussions in the Open Era usually come down to the two of them.

As far as asterisks go, I don't think there's a point saying, oh Seles would have won this particular slam instead of Graf, etc. But the footnote is there and it is important. This is probably the only case of attempted murder of a tennis player in the middle of a match, ever!

Apoleb
Feb 14th, 2010, 08:28 PM
If we'll start putting footnotes, then we might as well start putting footnotes next to Hingis' 3 slams in 97 or whatever. It just makes no sense to me. Seles' circumstances were horrible, but players have gone through terrible things in their lives too, maybe not as much, but it's a gradient. And while her (nine year or something) post-career should not be held against her, it also should not be a free pass for wild assumptions about career results and records. Personal issues within your family, injuries..etc all take their tolls. Everyone still had to pass a world class field to win a GS by the end of it.

dscho99
Feb 14th, 2010, 08:29 PM
Hi Calimero377 :wavey:

Enjoy your short stay with us ! :bounce:


Don't hold your breath, girl ...:lol:

dscho99
Feb 14th, 2010, 08:35 PM
Yep, she was awesome

it was a pity that ego maniac Graf paid the guy to take her out so she could hog all the GS's back again


Ouch!!!
You are lucky that you didn't attack Seles like that!!
Might have get you banned immediately ...

moby
Feb 14th, 2010, 08:41 PM
If we'll start putting footnotes, then we might as well start putting footnotes next to Hingis' 3 slams in 97 or whatever. It just makes no sense to me. Seles' circumstances were horrible, but players have gone through terrible things in their lives too, maybe not as much, but it's a gradient. And while her (nine year or something) post-career should not be held against her, it also should not be a free pass for wild assumptions about career results and records. Personal issues within your family, injuries..etc all take their tolls. Everyone still had to pass a world class field to win a GS by the end of it.Not sure about that. Wozniacki came pretty close to winning the US Open last year. :crying2:

"Maybe not as much"? From a pure and most directly tennis perspective, I'm not sure. Having your life under threat while playing tennis probably has a bigger impact on your tennis than most things. I actually believe in putting asterisks on every slam, and the circumstances, so yes, Hingis should be getting asterisks on her slams, as should Henin, as should Serena, etc, and every slam should be looked at from the circumstances by which they were won or lost. I don't think numbers can fully qualify wins. They're just a convenient simplification.

We can put all these footnotes in the annals of tennis, and at the end of the day, some footnotes will stand out more than others. And I believe the stabbing is one of these footnotes. The footnote simply says, in May 1993, a fan of world number 2 Steffi Graf stabbed world number 1 Monica Seles as he believed it would pave the path for Graf to regain the top ranking. Is Graf's record hurt by that? Maybe, maybe not, depending on the individual. But that is the unembellished truth.

Thinking that a player who reached the finals in 11 consecutive majors (including YEC) that she took part in, winning 10 of them... will win a few more majors in the upcoming years, is not really a wild assumption.

dscho99
Feb 14th, 2010, 08:42 PM
Exactly.

And a good point you make too about Seles having a full second career. I mean, there can definitely be no denigrating the 4 Slams Graf won after Seles had returned... even if Seles was still dealing with post-traumatic stress, she was still there and competing at a high-level, so Graf's wins from the 95 USO onwards are certainly legit. And also, there can't be any denigrating Graf's 2 Wimbledon victories in Seles's absence (if we're saying what happened between 1991 and 1993 would definitely have been repeated afterwards, then logically, it's only fair to assume Seles would've posed no threat to Graf there). So that means that, even if we are applying these hypotheticals, the only Slams we're penalising Graf is the FO and USO in 93, the 94AO and the 95FO, leaving Graf with 18 Slams. AND not to mention, if we're applying silly asterisks, it's only fair to speculate about whether Graf could've won more Slams had she not retired at the relatively early age of 30, especially considering she'd made the finals at the two most recent Slams.

Well, Graf never lost to Seles on fast hard-courts. Why should she have lost to Monica in the USO 93 final?
And I don't think Graf played so shabby in the FO 92 final against Seles that we can conclude that Seles's FO 93 or 95 was a given.
And how can we forget how awesome Graf played in the AO 94?

Maybe one FO title for Seles at Graf's expense.
And a few at the expense of Sanchez, Martinez, Novotna.
But else??
I don't know what people think ... :eek:

dscho99
Feb 14th, 2010, 08:47 PM
Oh I agree. It was certainly a huge victory for Seles just to ever step on a tennis court again. But still, hypotheticals just can't be taken into account when it's a pure analytical discussion. Would Graf have won 22 Slams had Seles not got stabbed? Probably not (although I do think she would've ended up with more Slams than Seles). But discussing a parallel universe where Seles didn't get stabbed is just as fruitful as discussing a parallel universe where Federer gave up tennis as a child.

Or how many slams Seles would have won if Graf's dad had not been such an idiot and caused an ugly blackmail scandal?
Graf had to deal with a lot of trouble and injuries herself. She is the last who has to apologize.

dscho99
Feb 14th, 2010, 08:50 PM
I think the biggest part of this discussion is not so much whether Graf would have ended up with more slams than Seles (I agree that probably she would have), but whether she would would have ended up with more slams than Navratilova. Since singles GOAT discussions in the Open Era usually come down to the two of them. ....


Even without the stabbing Graf most probably would have had more slams than Navratilova. And the grand slam.
PLUS some more prestigious slam final wins against Seles.
Seles's game suited Graf very well. It is no coincidence that Graf had a winning record even against a #1 Seles.

Apoleb
Feb 14th, 2010, 08:53 PM
Not sure about that. Wozniacki came pretty close to winning the US Open last year. :crying2:

"Maybe not as much"? From a pure and most directly tennis perspective, I'm not sure. Having your life under threat while playing tennis probably has a bigger impact on your tennis than most things. I actually believe in putting asterisks on every slam, and the circumstances, so yes, Hingis should be getting asterisks on her slams, as should Henin, as should Serena, etc, and every slam should be looked at from the circumstances by which they were won or lost. I don't think numbers can fully qualify wins. They're just a convenient simplification.

We can put all these footnotes in the annals of tennis, and at the end of the day, some footnotes will stand out more than others. And I believe the stabbing is one of these footnotes.

Thinking that a player who reached the finals in 11 consecutive majors (including YEC) that she took part in, winning 10 of them... will win a few more majors in the upcoming years, is not really a wild assumption.

I think victories stand up more than anything else. I agree about the value of circumstances, but rarely if ever I have seen people argue that "asteriks" should be placed next to a player's record. The common argument is that Graf is the one who has to suffer from this. This doesn't make sense to me. It's like GS wins are equally valid, but those in Seles' absence and post-return. As I said, as bad the circumstances were, this very special treatment is not warranted.

dscho99
Feb 14th, 2010, 08:59 PM
I think victories stand up more than anything else. I agree about the value of circumstances, but rarely if ever I have seen people argue that "asteriks" should be placed next to a player's record. The common argument is that Graf is the one who has to suffer from this. This doesn't make sense to me. It's like GS wins are equally valid, but those in Seles' absence and post-return. As I said, as bad the circumstances were, this very special treatment is not warranted.


It is OK with me when someone says Graf *would* not be the GOAT if Seles had not been stabbed. That is a respectable opinion.

But it is not OK to put asterisks on Graf's slams. That would be insulting her.

Optima
Feb 14th, 2010, 09:04 PM
If we'll start putting footnotes, then we might as well start putting footnotes next to Hingis' 3 slams in 97 or whatever. It just makes no sense to me. Seles' circumstances were horrible, but players have gone through terrible things in their lives too, maybe not as much, but it's a gradient. And while her (nine year or something) post-career should not be held against her, it also should not be a free pass for wild assumptions about career results and records. Personal issues within your family, injuries..etc all take their tolls. Everyone still had to pass a world class field to win a GS by the end of it.

:worship: :worship: :worship:

sammy01
Feb 14th, 2010, 09:05 PM
what has always annoyed me about the stabbing is the guy got what he wanted, seles out the game. i find it so sad someone could not only achieve such a thing, but the punishment be so little.

dsanders06
Feb 14th, 2010, 09:10 PM
what has always annoyed me about the stabbing is the guy got what he wanted, seles out the game. i find it so sad someone could not only achieve such a thing, but the punishment be so little.

He was judged to be mentally-ill though, so...

Steffica Greles
Feb 14th, 2010, 09:11 PM
Totally agree about not putting an asterix next to Graf's achievements. But I think I clearly didn't do that.

It's nonetheless fascinating to ponder what might have been when you look at Seles in early 1993. That's all I'm saying.

moby
Feb 14th, 2010, 09:12 PM
I think victories stand up more than anything else. I agree about the value of circumstances, but rarely if ever I have seen people argue that "asteriks" should be placed next to a player's record. The common argument is that Graf is the one who has to suffer from this. This doesn't make sense to me. It's like GS wins are equally valid, but those in Seles' absence and post-return. As I said, as bad the circumstances were, this very special treatment is not warranted.The fact that we're having this discussion at all is the legacy of Parche and his stabbing.

As for Steffi suffering... I think her Slam count benefitted more from Monica's absence (probably at least a couple) than it suffered from all these attempts at asterisks on those slams (which is to say, not at all). No one's stripping Steffi of her Slam titles.

It is OK with me when someone says Graf *would* not be the GOAT if Seles had not been stabbed. That is a respectable opinion.
But it is not OK to put asterisks on Graf's slams. That would be insulting her.OK.
Totally agree about not putting an asterix next to Graf's achievements. But I think I clearly didn't do that.

It's nonetheless fascinating to ponder what might have been when you look at Seles in early 1993. That's all I'm saying.I think for a lot of people it's all or nothing. If you bring up the stabbing, then it's immediately an undermining of Graf's wins in the period. What is the alternative? Sweep it under the rug? Pretend the stabbing never happened, or that it had scant impact on the game?

Apoleb
Feb 14th, 2010, 09:21 PM
The fact that we're having this discussion at all is the legacy of Parche and his stabbing.

As for Steffi suffering... I think her Slam count benefitted more from Monica's absence (probably at least a couple) than it suffered from all these attempts at asterisks on those slams (which is to say, not at all). No one's stripping Steffi of her Slam titles.



Probably a wrong choice of words, but I only meant "suffering" in the sense of being picked out to deal with a special status for her GS wins, which what I'm objecting at. Not in the absolute sense. Whether the latter is true or not is besides the point I am making; it's still something unfair and unwarranted.

dscho99
Feb 14th, 2010, 09:24 PM
Totally agree about not putting an asterix next to Graf's achievements. But I think I clearly didn't do that.

It's nonetheless fascinating to ponder what might have been when you look at Seles in early 1993. That's all I'm saying.


I didn't mean you!
Your posts are very balanced.
Maybe it comes with your name ...:wavey:

The Dawntreader
Feb 14th, 2010, 09:43 PM
Totally agree about not putting an asterix next to Graf's achievements. But I think I clearly didn't do that.

It's nonetheless fascinating to ponder what might have been when you look at Seles in early 1993. That's all I'm saying.

It would probably have been the toughest test of Graf's career, having to elevate her fitness and overall game to stay in constant contention with Seles.

What strikes me most about Seles is her incredibe intuition to develop and i pribmprove. Her volleying in that match, was quite superb in comparison to '91/92, where i felt her volleys lacked conviction, and her court positioning could always be exposed due to her slight unfamiliarity with being in the forecourt on a regular basis. Her volleying transformation was perhaps the missing link in Seles's game, and it was so effective that day. It allowed her to close in on Graf's backhand and finish the points much earlier, not embroiling herself in laborious rallies where the more athletic Graf would probably back herself in the long term.

I think Seles was perhaps making the inevitable transition to being an all-court player that could match Graf and better her in power and sheer physical strength.

Cookie Power
Feb 14th, 2010, 09:56 PM
Graf's backhand was one of the most disgusting shots in tennis history.

Matches her face.

Apoleb
Feb 15th, 2010, 12:58 AM
To add one more thing...

I think the motivation is what irks most people. As far as tennis history goes, of course, it wouldn't have made a difference if Monica was taken out by a bad car accident. But, she wasn't.

Everyone agrees that Connolly would probably have dominated tennis through the 50s if not for her horseriding accident... but no one puts as asterisk on those who won slams in her absence. :shrug:Exactly. This is the point I'm making. Because of the rarity of the event and the associated "emotional" sense the public has with it, it came to be associated largely differently than the troubles tennis players have to go through and their subsequent effects on their careers. And while I think the consequences were harsher than your average two-year injury break, there are many things players have to go through which could end up being as damaging, or maybe less, but definitely not less enough to warrant such very distinctive treatment. Who's to say that having an abusive father for the whole of your career (for example) is so much less damaging psychologically than a stabbing event? Or the loss of a family member in a violent manner? etc. This is why it's not fair nor reasonable to put aside Graf's accomplishments during Monica's absence (especially given that she had her long absences too and her fair share of personal troubles at critical moments in her career) and/or give Monica a free pass for the rest of the rather long career and opportunity she had after she came back.

Arnian
Feb 15th, 2010, 01:20 AM
amazing performance by Monica, the quality of this match is better than the quality of most matches now lol.

LightWarrior
Feb 15th, 2010, 01:27 AM
I think Seles was perhaps making the inevitable transition to being an all-court player that could match Graf and better her in power and sheer physical strength.

I don't know about "all-court player". We will never know but Seles' game was not suited for grass at all. I've always wondered why her game was so ineffective on grass. Well I know that she skipped Wimbledon in 1991 and was told to shut up against Graf in 1992. But still.

LightWarrior
Feb 15th, 2010, 01:39 AM
the quality of this match is better than the quality of most matches now lol.

I wouldn't be so sure. I'm always very wary of those highlights. Those highlights are misleading, they just show the winners. You can do that trick about any match.

Sam L
Feb 15th, 2010, 08:27 AM
When people reflect on Seles of 91-92, they think that she had maximized her potential - but the Seles of 1993, as briefly as we saw her, was sublime. She'd disposed of Sabatini 6-3, 6-1 in the semifinals and it seemed no one besides Graf at Wimbledon could stand in her way at the majors, in the short run ofcourse. And after this performance, even that did not seem a certainty as it had in 1992.

I have often wondered whether this loss hurt Graf more than the 1992 loss in Paris. She had said before the match it was going to be special - and she was right. They both went after it and Seles ran away with it in the end - Steffi's final service game in this match, it almost seemed like she was mentally defeated.



Actually she beat Sabatini 6-1 6-2. I know it's one game but I remember that match so well. After it was finished there was amazement all round because No. 1 beat the No. 3 in such a convincing fashion. And remember that back in those days players actually were ranked correctly. :lol:

Graf was a mess after the match. Back in those days there was no internet and I remember buying a magazine maybe a month later that had her interview and photos from the press conference where Graf just looked gloomy and out of it. She was DEFEATED. Big time.

Betten
Feb 15th, 2010, 09:15 AM
Great rivalry. It's a real shame it never got the chance to fully blossom.

I wonder what happened to Parch and what he's doing now?

sammy01
Feb 15th, 2010, 11:36 AM
He was judged to be mentally-ill though, so...

im not sure mentally ill people plan hurting someone. i think he was obsessed, not mentally ill

pascal77
Feb 15th, 2010, 12:52 PM
Martina.N can say i have to look at the mirror if asked who is the best player, But Graf cant,why?

phantom of seles is always on her back. Graf's fans had better shut up to enjoy her so-called 22

slams. "what a great honour"!

pascal77
Feb 15th, 2010, 01:07 PM
Of course interruptions break momentum.
And Seles had gained a lot of weight.
The emotional stress caused by the stabbing and - what many Seles fans try to downplay - her father dying of cancer worsened her pre-existing eating disorder problems.

I don't think that Graf would have been out for more than 2 years because of a stabbing, BTW.

But I really don't want to dive into the abyss of Seles-Graf-stabbing controversies. Let's agree that the stabbing influenced the history of women's tennis. As did Connolly's riding accident, Graf's multiple injuries and family problems, Tracy Austin's career-ending injury and Capriati's drug problems.
Stabbing from the fan of your opponent is totally different from such personal problems as injuries or drug abuse, otherwise not only Graf's fans believe she really deserved some of her slams. I really appreciate your strong desire to justify all her slams, but the thing is she took advantage of Seles's absebce , that's part of her tennis history. Dont try to change it.