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View Full Version : Serena Williams = Martina Navratilova


Volcana
Apr 13th, 2003, 03:36 AM
Stop. There's a man with a gun pointed at your head. If you just write the first thing that comes to mind, he'll shoot.

The comparison wasn't my idea.

Okay, the sniper's gone. You can move.

Pam Shriver, during the Davenport match, made the comparison noting that during Martina's run in 85 and into 86, she had done very well on clay, and Serena looked like Martina playing on clay during that period.

That's the first time I ever heard a player compared to Martina and it didn't seem absurd. Of course, she wasn't comparing Serena to CHRIS EVERT on clay. In a way, an odd observation.

Serena, on her worst surface, looks like Navratilova playing on HER worst surface.

But Pam Shriver saw more of Navratilova on a tennis court than anyone. If anyone can say that w/o being laughed out of the building, its her.

disposablehero
Apr 13th, 2003, 04:06 AM
In order to be fairly compared to Martina, Serena needs to produce in volume. Martina played 633 matches from 1980-1986, a span of 7 years. That's JUST in singles. Serena cherry-picks a bit.

Rtael
Apr 13th, 2003, 04:20 AM
agree with DH

Volcana
Apr 13th, 2003, 05:59 AM
I wouldn't even begin to compare Serena to the greatest player of all time. I was just kinda stunned to hear Pam, of all people, say that.

spencercarlos
Apr 13th, 2003, 06:18 AM
Well i don´t agree that much, i mean Martina was a serving volley player that rushed the net, i dont understand the comparisson that much.

Steffi´s worst surface was clay and still managed to win 6 roland garros, maybe comparing these two (Steffi-Serena) could be more logical, clay demands to play a more patience tennis than any other surface. Steffi could do it without losing the status of being the agressive player, and Serena has shown that she is capable of doing it, and even better i think, because Serena can hit winners from everywhere, its like there is no room where to hit against her and don´t feel pressure.

Jakeev
Apr 13th, 2003, 11:59 AM
The point however is that the best player in the world can play on any surface good or bad to her game, under the best or worst conditions and playing her best or worst game.

This is what seperates Serena from the current pack. She can do it all. And frankly, I don't think clay is Serena's worst surface anymore. If anything, I think she is playing better on the dirt because it challenges her physical and mental toughness.

Dava
Apr 13th, 2003, 12:05 PM
Ask me the question in 10 years time, lets remeber Serena although she has won the Grand Slam, she has only won five in total, comapred to Martinas 7 Billion.

mishar
Apr 13th, 2003, 01:16 PM
I think she was comparing Serena to Martina's intensity in the 83-84 years when she won practically everything, even on her worst surface.
Serena is just playing unbelievable tennis right now.
She doesn't have the liabilities of Martina on clay -- it's very hard to play a good serve and volley on clay, but Serena's angles and movement work well for her on clay. The only way it would negate her game is because the surface makes the serve less important. On the other hand, the return becomes more important (as we saw yesterday.)

tennisjam
Apr 13th, 2003, 01:50 PM
I'd rather say:

Serena possibly better than Navratilova...

( With all my respects to Martina, but if Serena decides to dedicate herself totally to tennis and stays away from injuries, with all the possibilities she has, she can become the best player ever so far...)

Kirt12255
Apr 13th, 2003, 01:55 PM
Just wondering how successfull Serena would be with a wooden racket and the style of play when Martina started?....and dominated.....there is no comparison IMO....Martina....Steffi....Margaret.....Serena still has quite a long way to go :wavey:

Kart
Apr 13th, 2003, 02:21 PM
Well there's nothing wrong in the comparison. Both have a lot in common and are as dominant as each other were. I agree with whoever said that clay is not necessarily Serena's worst surface anymore though, you can't really say that after her clay court season last year. If anything she's probably worse on rebound ace.

Experimentee
Apr 13th, 2003, 02:39 PM
Well there's nothing wrong in the comparison. Both have a lot in common and are as dominant as each other were. I agree with whoever said that clay is not necessarily Serena's worst surface anymore though, you can't really say that after her clay court season last year. If anything she's probably worse on rebound ace.

I dont think its rebound ace that shes bad on, rather its the time of the year. Serenas always been a slow starter, so i suppose shes rusty when she comes to australia. I dont see any aspect of the rebound ace surface that could have a negative effect on her game.

Pureracket
Apr 13th, 2003, 02:51 PM
Just wondering how successfull Serena would be with a wooden racket and the style of play when Martina started?....and dominated.....there is no comparison IMO....Martina....Steffi....Margaret.....Serena still has quite a long way to go :wavey:

Well, the comparison called for 83-86. Martina wasn't playing with a wooden racket, then. Also, did Martina REALLY dominate when a played with wooden rackets?

BK4ever
Apr 13th, 2003, 02:57 PM
I hate these stupid comparisons...but I know for sure that Pam was not comparing careers, she was comparing them in terms of intensity.

Serena will never have Martina's career, because Tennis is not everything to Serena like it is to Martina...nor will she ever ever play as much as Martina...

Serena is one of the GREATS already...but their should never be the "title of the greatest" in my mind...we could say in "their era" simply because the game has changed so much and continues to change so much.

Steffi was great in her era...
Martina N was great in her era...
Martina H was great in her era...

Seenus
Apr 13th, 2003, 03:31 PM
I hate these stupid comparisons...but I know for sure that Pam was not comparing careers, she was comparing them in terms of intensity.

Serena will never have Martina's career, because Tennis is not everything to Serena like it is to Martina...nor will she ever ever play as much as Martina...

Serena is one of the GREATS already...but their should never be the "title of the greatest" in my mind...we could say in "their era" simply because the game has changed so much and continues to change so much.

Steffi was great in her era...
Martina N was great in her era...
Martina H was great in her era...

"Hate" is a strong word but I agree. It is like comparing Jesse Owens with Mitchell.

Kart
Apr 13th, 2003, 03:47 PM
I dont think its rebound ace that shes bad on, rather its the time of the year. Serenas always been a slow starter, so i suppose shes rusty when she comes to australia. I dont see any aspect of the rebound ace surface that could have a negative effect on her game.

I actually agree with you in that I don't think she's bad on rebound ace. I just meant that from a results point of view she came closest to being out of a grand slam in Australia but I think you could porbably argue just as validly that it was the time of year as well.

SJW
Apr 13th, 2003, 04:30 PM
shes good but shes not that good (yet)

Brian Stewart
Apr 13th, 2003, 11:16 PM
I think the most valid conclusion one can draw from Pam's comparison is how misleading the term "worst surface" is. In Martina's time, they often mentioned clay as her worst surface, and made it sound as if she was #1 everywhere else, and #51 on clay. The fact of the matter is, Martina retired with one of the 5 best claycourt records of the Open era.

And I noticed Pam pointed out the years in the mid 80's, around 1984, 85, 86. These were the years Chris Evert was in the best shape of her life, and was playing her best tennis of her career. Yet whenever Martina played her best clay tennis, and Chris played her best clay tennis, Martina won. Handily. It's just that clay was the surface most likely to draw a less-than-top performance from Martina. (The margin for error for a serve/volleyer on clay is greatly reduced, whereas it expands on grass.)

The common theme is that to get to the top of women's tennis, you have to have a solid game. And even on your worst surface, you're usually at least one of the 5 best in the world.