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laschutz
Sep 10th, 2011, 02:07 PM
just curious as to why sue barker always gave austin fits, while evert for the most part brushed her off easily... the only win barker ever had over chrissie was in 1979 during the avon championship and a time when concerned and totally focused on her wedding coming in,... chrissie during that tournament was losing to everyone! it was also i believe the first time she ever lost to austin during that tournament and she lost to austin 3 and 1.... so obviously evert was NOT in the right frame of mind to be playing any tennis, much less against top competition.... anyway....

besides that one "blimp" on the record and a 3 set match in the finals of the 1977 championship that evert came from behind to beat barker... chrissie handled sue rather handily throughtout the remainder of barker's career...

now of course tracy all of 14! took out barker on the clay in 1977 u.s. open but it seems after that match,,.. that even when tracy was at her best barker could give tracy fits... still wonder how in the heck barker in the fall of 1981 could beat the just crowned u.s. open champion austin... that is one match victory/loss i don't get at all!... austin beating evert and navratilova at the canadian open, beating martina in the finals of the u.s. and later in the year had those epic matches with chrissie at the year end championships, beats martina yet again in the finals of the championship... but loses to barker, who by this time in 1981 was pretty much almost done...

can anyone explain to why barker's game gave austin fits throughout tracy's short career, but did nothing to chrissie? not trying to be too hard on barker, but i'm not really positively sure as to why she was a top player for a short time.. great forehand with her wooden racket, but a very average serve, very average "block the ball put the ball in play" backhand.. no mid court game i saw.... and no variety when whacking the ball off her forehand wasn't working...

Jem
Sep 11th, 2011, 03:12 AM
So what was their head to head -- 2-2? I took a quick glance at the ITF website, and that's the record I see. One thing you have to take into account is that their last three matches were played on carpet -- arguably Sue's best and Tracy's worst surface. All were extremely close matches, save their first encounter. Sue could be streaky but also steady, and she could whack the forehand. I suspect had Tracy played a longer career and met Barker more often, she would have had a good record against her. Tracy began building confidence in 1979 and by the end of the Slims season, was playing very well. In 1981, on carpet, in England, it's not so shocking that Barker could pull off the upset. Plus, was that the year that Navratilova slaughtered Tracy 2-0 in the Stuttgart final, right before or after the English tournament?

AdeyC
Sep 12th, 2011, 08:57 PM
Their H2H was 4-3 in favour of Austin - I was fortunate enough to see two of them in person
1977US OPENCLAYR32T.Austin6-1 6-4
1978WIGHTMAN CUPCARPETR128S. Barker6-3 3-6 6-1
1979HOLLYWOODHARDR32S. Barker2-6 6-2 6-3
1979CHICAGOCARPETQT.Austin5-7 6-3 6-3
1979WIGHTMAN CUPHARDR128T.Austin6-4 6-2
1981WIGHTMAN CUPCARPETR1T.Austin7-5 6-3
1981BRIGHTONHARDQS. Barker7-6 2-6 6-3

Rollo
Sep 13th, 2011, 12:26 AM
Their H2H was 4-3 in favour of Austin - I was fortunate enough to see two of them in person


Cool. Any memories or incidents you can recall? Where did you see them at?

Pure guesswork on my part, but perhaps Sue was the type of player who thrived on pace? Strange as it might sound today, in her era Tracy was a hard hitter off both wings. Her forehand was certainly hit harder than Chrissie's. If that was the case her pace would "feed into" Barker's preference.

AdeyC
Sep 13th, 2011, 09:21 PM
Well the 1978 Wightman Cup, my mum said she'd take me up to London (I was 12 at the time) to the Royal Albert Hall for the last day. GB and US were tied at 2-2. We got the train and tube and walked to the Albert Hall, I remember the first match being Wade v Evert and it was a really easy win for Evert, (disappointing from my point of view) at the time I'd only been to Wimbledon, Eastbourne and Brighton, but the atmosphere there was so loud - my mum was complaining about having a headache midway through the first match.
Then it was the Barker v Austin match which Sue had to win to keep Britain in the tie. Sue's forehand was working magnificently that day in the first set, She slumped in the second and lost it, you could feel atmosphere in the hall that everyone felt she was going to lose the match after that, but she came out all guns blazing in the third set and won it 6-1
After a 30 minute break there was the final doubles of Evert and Shriver against Wade and Barker, which was an exciting match, which was won by Wade and Barker.

The other one being the Brighton QF at the Brighton Centre in 1981 (I lived in London at the time - although I now live about 10 minutes from the Brighton Centre now - I so miss that tournament) which was a late evening match. In the morning after getting off the train and walking along the seafront I passed Virginia Wade and Mima Jausovec and got thier autographs. At that time Sue had slumped and I don't think that anyone had expected her to win against Austin. The first set was very close affair which was won on a tie-break, Sue lost the second set fairly easily and I (along with everyone else) thought that the third would be just as easy for Austin. There was an early point in the third set which must have been a 30+ stroke rally which Austin should have won about 3 times but lost, that one point seemed to inspire Sue somehow and she went on to win the match. I then had a rush to Brighton station to make sure that I didn't miss the last train back to London.

Kathy Horvath
Sep 25th, 2011, 12:54 AM
lashutz - I think you are underestimating the Barker forehand. It was, in her heyday, the equivalent of steffi graf's. Sue was also very tenacious and an unpredictable player. Much like myself when I took Martina out of the equation at Roland Garros in 1983. Sue I believe took the title in 1976.

laschutz
Sep 25th, 2011, 03:34 PM
hmm. no question barker's forehand was HUGE back in the day.. the difference is (versus graf) is she had nothing else it seems to me... average serve, average movement, no mid court game, very average 'blunt/put the ball back in play" backhand...

obviously steffi had the huge serve, the vicious consistent backhand slice and she could when she felt like it and had time come over it.. ran like a olympic sprinter around the court, etcetera....

playing steffi and not hitting to her forehand STILL didn't work against her.. unlike it would seem you could play and win against barker....

DennisFitz
Sep 25th, 2011, 07:37 PM
lashutz - I think you are underestimating the Barker forehand. It was, in her heyday, the equivalent of steffi graf's.

Ooohh, I do';t think so. Not even remotely close. Sue had a big, hard flat forehand. It was a weapon. But none of the players felt that if they hit to her FH, they'd got blown off the court. The racquets were different then anyway, so Sue couldn't generate the pace the way Graf could.

I found it interesting that Sue would have as much success against Tracy, considering their first match was the 1977 US Open 3R debacle, where Sue was crushed 61,64! Often times when a young player beats a veteran early in the career, it establishes a psychological advantage for the younger one. That Sue was able to beat Tracy when Tracy was the much higher ranked players does say something. For Sue to be able to play Tracy on fast indoor carpets also helped her H2H cause.

The fact that apart form the lone loss, and a few close matches indoors in 1976,1977, Chris dominated Sue indicates Chris definitely had more variety than Tracy. And I think Chris was able to blunt the pace from Barker very effectively. I also don't think Tracy really hit the ball a lot harder than Evert. Tracy's shots were flatter. But with both Tracy and Barker, they had less margin for error. Chris always had more. Unless Tracy was moonballing! :rolleyes:

Sumarokov-Elston
Sep 25th, 2011, 08:51 PM
lashutz - I think you are underestimating the Barker forehand. It was, in her heyday, the equivalent of steffi graf's. Sue was also very tenacious and an unpredictable player. Much like myself when I took Martina out of the equation at Roland Garros in 1983. Sue I believe took the title in 1976.

Well done, Kathy, for remembering the year and the place! You have so many achievements and left so many marks on the game, that you could be forgiven for mixing that match up with all your other triumphs. Can you remind us of some of the others again?!? :lol:

Sue Barker was a bit like a steamroller in that if she could run around her backhand a lot (and she did, she was sometimes playing out of the left-hand corner!), she could really get going and could only be stopped by a very good player. I remember her 1981 win against Austin; she was on fire all week and teared through a whole lot of other players, if I recall - Barbara Potter and Mima Jausovic in the final (note that all three were grand-slammers, mind you so was Sue herself!). I think a lot of the British players were like that a lot - when they were on their game, they could catch fire and rip through anyone. Think Ann Jones, Virginia Wade, Jo Durie... even Winnie Shaw beat Margaret Court in 1970, I believe! :eek:

AdeyC
Sep 25th, 2011, 09:20 PM
hmm. no question barker's forehand was HUGE back in the day.. the difference is (versus graf) is she had nothing else it seems to me... average serve, average movement, no mid court game, very average 'blunt/put the ball back in play" backhand...

obviously steffi had the huge serve, the vicious consistent backhand slice and she could when she felt like it and had time come over it.. ran like a olympic sprinter around the court, etcetera....

playing steffi and not hitting to her forehand STILL didn't work against her.. unlike it would seem you could play and win against barker....

I still reckon that Sue's forehand was better than Steffi's - although I can't deny that Steffi would come on top in all other areas.

Jem
Sep 25th, 2011, 10:08 PM
lashutz - I think you are underestimating the Barker forehand. It was, in her heyday, the equivalent of steffi graf's. Sue was also very tenacious and an unpredictable player. Much like myself when I took Martina out of the equation at Roland Garros in 1983. Sue I believe took the title in 1976.

I loved Sue, and she did have a great forehand. But, even in her day, I don't think it was the equivalent of Graf's forehand. Graf had the best forehand of all time, probably. Sue's was good, but I'm not sure it was even the best of her generation. Martina, even in the 1970s, could hit a forehand that rivaled Barker's in my opinion. Martina's forehand was a fiercesome shot back in the day.

Kathy Horvath
Sep 26th, 2011, 10:48 PM
I think we are seriously underestimating Sue! Take 1981 - she beat twice US Open champ Tracy Austin - something Martina could not do a few weeks earlier at the US Open (heartbreak for Martina there). Similarly in that same year (1981)she almost had Martina not once... but twice.... on grass! The first time in Surbiton and the second at Eastbourne. Martina had won at least two Wimbeldons by then. Sue was overwhelmed by expectation - and I agree she had some major disasters at Wimbeldon. She deserved a better career but didnt quite get there. Nevertheless I believe on her day with her forehand firing - Chris, Martina and Tracy all gave her respect. She beat all three of them - in fact she also has wins over Mrs Cawley and Billie-Jean! All of them grand slam champs!!We would very much like a GB woman to beat GS champs today!!

Kathy Horvath
Sep 26th, 2011, 11:16 PM
[QUOTE=Sumarokov-Elston;20279560]Well done, Kathy, for remembering the year and the place! You have so many achievements and left so many marks on the game, that you could be forgiven for mixing that match up with all your other triumphs. Can you remind us of some of the others again?!? :lol:

I think snapping Ms Navratilova's 84 match winning streak is some achievement. It allowed Chris to crush Mima (again). Besides I owned Rinaldi-Stunkel who everyone wanted... including some of the more butch women!

DennisFitz
Sep 30th, 2011, 04:22 AM
I think we are seriously underestimating Sue! Take 1981 - she beat twice US Open champ Tracy Austin - something Martina could not do a few weeks earlier at the US Open (heartbreak for Martina there). Similarly in that same year (1981)she almost had Martina not once... but twice.... on grass! The first time in Surbiton and the second at Eastbourne. Martina had won at least two Wimbeldons by then. Sue was overwhelmed by expectation - and I agree she had some major disasters at Wimbeldon. She deserved a better career but didnt quite get there. Nevertheless I believe on her day with her forehand firing - Chris, Martina and Tracy all gave her respect. She beat all three of them - in fact she also has wins over Mrs Cawley and Billie-Jean! All of them grand slam champs!!We would very much like a GB woman to beat GS champs today!!

I liked Sue, but.....

Not so sure about the underestimating her. She had a fine win over Austin, in the QF at Brighton. But not quite the same as a US Open final. Martina did thrash Tracy indoors a few weeks after the US Open, and before Sue's win.

Sue did have some near wins. But close only counts in horseshoes, not tennis.

She had a fine career, with wins over many top players. Pity she didn't fare better in major events. Or have a more consistent career. Although she's a French champ, I think her best results came on carpet. (Hence her decent H2H vs Austin). Her hit or miss game could be lethal when she was on.

AdeyC
Oct 1st, 2011, 08:15 PM
We would very much like a GB woman to beat GS champs today!!

Elena Baltacha beat Schiavone last year - but I know what you're getting at :)


Similarly in that same year (1981)she almost had Martina not once... but twice.... on grass! The first time in Surbiton and the second at Eastbourne. Martina had won at least two Wimbeldons by then. Sue was overwhelmed by expectation - and I agree she had some major disasters at Wimbeldon.


Another of those disasters being losing to Betsy Nagelsen in the 3rd round of Wimbly, when the prize of a 4th round match would have been against........Martina. Would have been the third meeting in four weeks.

Kathy Horvath
Oct 1st, 2011, 10:27 PM
Recently on YouTube someone has fortunately posted the 1976 French Open semi, Ruzici v Barker and also the Wimbeldon semi Barker v Stove. In both, particuarly the Ruzici match, you can see the forehand. Raw talent I think.

I know Baltacha beat Schiavone but Bally isnt really in the same class as Barker. Bally talks a good game but she doesnt execute. She is a good top 65 player but hasnt got the weapons to get beyond second rounds in GS. Barker had weapons. We havent had a GB player for so long to get into 3rd and 4th Rounds at GS tournaments. This may well change with Watson and Robson (who has just beaten two good players to reach the 1st round in China).

AdeyC
Oct 2nd, 2011, 09:17 AM
I know Baltacha beat Schiavone but Bally isnt really in the same class as Barker. Bally talks a good game but she doesnt execute. She is a good top 65 player but hasnt got the weapons to get beyond second rounds in GS. Barker had weapons. We havent had a GB player for so long to get into 3rd and 4th Rounds at GS tournaments. This may well change with Watson and Robson (who has just beaten two good players to reach the 1st round in China).

I 100% agree with you - hence the 'but I know what you're getting at'.

Baltacha is the best British No 1 we've had since Sarah Gomer

Sumarokov-Elston
Oct 2nd, 2011, 06:57 PM
I 100% agree with you - hence the 'but I know what you're getting at'.

Baltacha is the best British No 1 we've had since Sarah Gomer

Would that be the same Sara Gomer who only managed to win one game on her best surface (grass) against notoriously slow starter Chris Evert at Wimbledon in 1989, when Evert was completely over the hill, almost did not enter because of injury and had played about two tournaments that year?

Baltacha is like that other East European import - Alex Bogdanovic. The minute they reach our shores they get the "British disease" (mostly because they get everything handed to them on a plate for very little input, along with completely overblown BBC and other coverage of their actually very insignificant "careers").

But back to the main topic, and I have to say I am glad Barker did not make it through to 1983. I was watching the finals of the 1983 Mixed Doubles World Championships, featuring Chris Evert and Andrea Jaegar with two of the most frightening and uncomplementary "poodle perms" I have ever seen. The thought of the woman often unkindly called "the poor man's Chris Evert" sporting something similar is almost too frightening to ponder. :eek:

Kathy Horvath
Oct 2nd, 2011, 09:17 PM
I think that was the fashion in the 1980s. Do you remember Bonnie Gadusek - now that was a poodle perm! I always thought Chris looked ok because she was quite stoical on court and had a bit of a ruthless air about her!

I cant recall Sara Gomer doing anything significant - I think she may have reached Wimbeldon 3rd round once.

Barker's career was over really by the end of 1982.

AdeyC
Oct 2nd, 2011, 11:46 PM
I cant recall Sara Gomer doing anything significant - I think she may have reached Wimbeldon 3rd round once.


She won a tourney in Auckland (last British woman to win one) and should have reached Wimbly 3R (had match points against Shriver), but did make 3R of US Open.

daze11
Oct 6th, 2011, 06:40 PM
I think this clip actually does give some weight & credence to Ms HORVATH's claim of Steffi Grafism in the game of Sue Barker. That is some forehand...and plenty of running around the backhand to deliver it:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IwDgx14Ca28

Sumarokov-Elston
Oct 6th, 2011, 08:36 PM
I think this clip actually does give some weight & credence to Ms HORVATH's claim of Steffi Grafism in the game of Sue Barker. That is some forehand...and plenty of running around the backhand to deliver it:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IwDgx14Ca28

Yes, that was Sue Barker's trademark shot alright. I enjoyed the match, but Chris is looking all skin and bone! I wonder if there was some reason for her disastrous (by her standards) second half of 1981, marriage problems or something? She was thin enough as it was at Wimbledon, but here she is painfully thin. And when she went to collect the trophy with her hair down, I could have sworn it was Martina Navratilova! The hair looks so similar. I can imagine the remarks they used to get if they ever went out together around that time: "Look at those pair of dykes with the matching haircuts"! :lol:

Kathy Horvath
Oct 7th, 2011, 11:09 PM
Chris played very well in that Fed Cup match against Sue. Sometimes Chris upped her game when playing for her country. Sue didnt seem to play badly but the scoreline looks dreadful! Still liking Sue's play though - bearing in mind both are playing with wood - crunching the ball a lot. Great to see these matches - as at the time I dont think this was shown on UK tv! Have the UK been near the Fed Cup final since? I dont think so!

Sumarokov-Elston
Oct 8th, 2011, 01:10 AM
Chris played very well in that Fed Cup match against Sue. Sometimes Chris upped her game when playing for her country. Sue didnt seem to play badly but the scoreline looks dreadful! Still liking Sue's play though - bearing in mind both are playing with wood - crunching the ball a lot. Great to see these matches - as at the time I dont think this was shown on UK tv! Have the UK been near the Fed Cup final since? I dont think so!

I agree, I don't think this was shown in the UK, a country which thinks that tennis began when Queen's Club began and ended when Wimbledon ended! I was not even aware that Britain had reached the final of the Federation Cup (which, at that time, was considered very inferior to the far more classy Whiteman Cup!). Whereas I did know that the UK reached the final of the Davis Cup, where they lost to the USA (1979?). I agree that Sue showed some nice tennis, while the score looks dreadful. I can imagine Chris having a good sn-igger when she heard the surface would be green clay, while the fact that Sue had once dared to beat her (in 1979, when she was basically losing to anyone capable of holding a racket) meant that the Ice Maiden was definitely going to do her outmost to humiliate this "inferior British model" of C. M. Evert...

But gotta love Sue's forehands, overheads and good racket preparation!

AdeyC
Oct 8th, 2011, 09:26 PM
Have the UK been near the Fed Cup final since? I dont think so!

I think a QF in 1990 was the best we've done since.

Kathy Horvath
Oct 10th, 2011, 11:22 PM
Im loving Sue's all round game on quite a slow surface. Not frightened of coming to the net either. She is definitely limited on the backhand but the overheads and forehands are quite wonderful! She was a stylish player. Because of racket technology and obviously different training methods - most players do not have style. In the women's current top 10 - Kvitova has some promise to develop a stylish game but stylish players are few and far between.

AdeyC
Nov 24th, 2012, 09:55 PM
I agree, I don't think this was shown in the UK, a country which thinks that tennis began when Queen's Club began and ended when Wimbledon ended! I was not even aware that Britain had reached the final of the Federation Cup (which, at that time, was considered very inferior to the far more classy Whiteman Cup!).
But gotta love Sue's forehands, overheads and good racket preparation!

I dont think it was - these YouTube clips are the first time I've ever seen it.