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  Topic Review (Newest First)
Nov 25th, 2013 01:23 AM
Caesar1844
Re: Martina Navratilova VS Serena Williams

Stupid poll question. You can't compare eras. Different equipment, different tactical environment, different training/fitness, etc.

Serena would win but I doubt many sane people would regard her as the greater player.
Nov 25th, 2013 12:51 AM
Wimbledon9
Re: Martina Navratilova VS Serena Williams

I have seen both players and if you think, only grandslam titels count then in the end Serena will probably win and I know people come up with the injuries of Serena.

But Martina had to do something nobody of these greats had to do namely defect that had a great impact on her and she did not play that good in her first years when she was all alone although she won already grandslam doubles titels. It is a great tribute to her that she still succeeded that she is even considered one of the greats.

I can tell you that Martina was and is by far the most spectaculair and entertaining player there has ever been and if Martina had played like Chris Evert this would have been the most boring rivalry.

Serena does not play enertaining with all her aces and her power.If we are going to play Serena and Martina against each other in what time and with what material. It is all so theoretical the older people all know how technical the older players were and Martina has so much touch and comes from the Czech school maybe the best in the world.
Martina was not a lazy player otherwise you do not win 167 singles tournaments and 177 doubles tournaments, Martina is the only one who once said tennis is a very nice game and she obviously loves it very much.
Nov 24th, 2013 02:59 PM
thrust
Re: Martina Navratilova VS Serena Williams

Quote:
Originally Posted by serenafann View Post
Serena at or Near her Best,has NO EQUALS. Serena in two sets.
Unfortunately, we will never know. However, we do know that both Serena and Martina are great athletes, mentally strong players and fiercely determined winners. If Martina was in her prime today, of course her game would be somewhat different, but with today's equipment and her overall greatness she would be a very tough opponent for Serena. Certainly Martina Navratilova would be far superior an opponent than anyone Serena faces today. Overall, I think prime Serena-Navratilova would be a very exciting and close rivalry.
Nov 24th, 2013 02:15 PM
LightWarrior
Re: Martina Navratilova VS Serena Williams

Quote:
Originally Posted by wtennisphan View Post
Evert is 5'7'' and Azarenka is 6'0''. She won't have near as much fire power from the ground. She'd be akin to Wozniacki in her game style and power output regardless of racquet. She did not play the same aggressive style sitting on the baseline like Azarenka either. She is also not the athlete Azarenka is. Honestly, if you asked Evert point blank if she thought she'd compete with Serena when there both at there best, she'd be honest and say no. She said Serena is the best players I've seen and often brings up the power and athleticism differential in there respective games. She even mentioned it in her open letter to Serena.
No. How insulting is that to 18 GS winner Evert ?! Give '80s Evert Azarenka's current racquet and you get back to me...
Nov 23rd, 2013 06:01 PM
TennisFan102
Re: Martina Navratilova VS Serena Williams

It's hard to say whether Serena is 2 and Martina is 3 or vice versa but for my money the greatest to ever play against females was Bobby Riggs. I just wish he didn't ruin his rep as the greatest intergender tennis champion by tanking against Billie Jean King to pay off his bookies.
Nov 23rd, 2013 04:53 PM
Superawesome
Re: Martina Navratilova VS Serena Williams

The power would be too much for Martina. The power game in the modern game has moved it on another level.
Martina would be considered small in this era.
Nov 23rd, 2013 03:52 PM
wtennisphan
Re: Martina Navratilova VS Serena Williams

Quote:
Originally Posted by LightWarrior View Post
I hate it when people compare eras, GOATS...What kind of racquets are we talking here ? Wooden racquets ? '80s graphite ? Today's racquets technology that generate enormous power and enormous spin ?
Just compare 1983 wooden racquet Evert with 1985 graphite Evert and get back to me...2013 Evert would be a superior Azarenka with nerves, consistency and a game plan. Conversely I doubt Navratilova would serve&volley with today's racquet technology. Just look at Federer...
Evert is 5'7'' and Azarenka is 6'0''. She won't have near as much fire power from the ground. She'd be akin to Wozniacki in her game style and power output regardless of racquet. She did not play the same aggressive style sitting on the baseline like Azarenka either. She is also not the athlete Azarenka is. Honestly, if you asked Evert point blank if she thought she'd compete with Serena when there both at there best, she'd be honest and say no. She said Serena is the best players I've seen and often brings up the power and athleticism differential in there respective games. She even mentioned it in her open letter to Serena.
Nov 23rd, 2013 03:15 PM
ADK
Re: Martina Navratilova VS Serena Williams

Quote:
Originally Posted by rjd1111 View Post
Sports Illustrated's Jon Wortheim:


Serena has the most fearsome serve -- i.e. the most important stroke -- in women's tennis history, and it would be the case even if everyone used the same technology. (She uses natural gut strings by the way.) She is the best athlete in women's tennis history, likely the fastest and the strongest. And she competes as well as any athlete -- not tennis player; athlete -- you'll ever come across.

But here's where I really feel strongly: Head-to-head, on a neutral surface (i.e. hard courts), everyone at their best, I can't help feeling that she crushes the other legends. Sacrilege, I know. But spark up of video of other players, watch where their balls land in the court or how hard they serve or how they move and then consider Serena's game. She would blow through Evert. She wouldn't allow Navratilova (who looks like a pixie next to Serena) a chance to attack. She would tee off on Graf's slice. Again, this isn't to disrespect the others; it's progress. But I think it counts for a lot that no one has ever played tennis at a higher level than Serena has.
This is an aspect of Serena's game people hardly pay enough attention to in comparison threads of any description. No player, in my view, makes you work harder than Serena. No player in the history of the game - man or woman - exploits angles so early in the point (oftentimes right from the first return of serve) like Serena. And as the quote above acknowledges, an eye for angles and ball placement would be the same whatever the era or technology. Richard Williams once described his daughter as understanding the mathematics of tennis (angles). It was a massive understatement. I do believe Serena goes on to a tennis court envisioning how many ways she can make life uncomfortable for her opponent using ball placement at court extremes before the latter has even had a chance to complete each swing of the racket.
Nov 23rd, 2013 03:13 PM
LightWarrior
Re: Martina Navratilova VS Serena Williams

I hate it when people compare eras, GOATS...What kind of racquets are we talking here ? Wooden racquets ? '80s graphite ? Today's racquets technology that generate enormous power and enormous spin ?
Just compare 1983 wooden racquet Evert with 1985 graphite Evert and get back to me...2013 Evert would be a superior Azarenka with nerves, consistency and a game plan. Conversely I doubt Navratilova would serve&volley with today's racquet technology. Just look at Federer...
Nov 23rd, 2013 03:00 PM
rollingraces
Re: Martina Navratilova VS Serena Williams

Quote:
Originally Posted by AcesHigh View Post
Martina is the greatest grasscourter ever hands-down and her serve rivals Serena's on the surface. How can you get beat pretty badly in 3 sets? In 88, Martina was already in her 30s and past her peak yet she was still one of the greatest grasscourters in the game.

And today is Serena's clay peak? Based on what? What clay giants has she faced? What good claycourters is she contending with? Meanwhile, Navratilova had to contend with 2 players who were superior to Henin (Evert, Graf)
Graf's Roland Garros title count is greatly boosted by the Seles stabbing so it is not certain at all she is better than Henin on clay, especialy when Henin was likely on her way to atleast 6 French Opens had she kept playing. Graf regularly made 70 unforced errors in some of her French Open finals (win or lose). Anyway you said yourself Martina and Graf were hardly even of the same era, so she did not really face Graf on clay. They played a grand total of 2 matches ever on clay, only 1 at Roland Garros.

Evert yes, but then again Evert totally owned Navratilova on clay, so that doesn't tell us anything either way does it. Serena is likely to surpass Navratilova's 2 Roland Garros titles and clay court tier 1 titles stats.

Henin is a superior clay courter to Navratilova agreed (to dispute this is laughable), and peak Serena played Henin equal on clay, so I am sure she could hold her own and atleast make it very competitive, if not perhaps (but not certainly) have an edge. Serena's clay prime lasts nowhere near as long as Martina agreed. She was only a really good clay courter in 2002, 2003, 2013, and 2012 (minus RG) so far, but then again Martina was only from 82-87.


As for grass Navratilova was not far past her prime at all at Wimbledon 88 and 89. She had won the last 6 Wimbledons in a row, and when Graf went out would win a 7th in 1990. Had Graf not emerged people would be aweing over the dominant and invincible Navratilova of the last 5 years another few more, but sadly for her Graf did emerge. Navratilova won 20 games vs Graf's 36 in those 2 finals combined. That is overall a comprehensive beating IMO. Even if it wasn't total peak Navratilova, they were decisive enough to indicate even peak Navratilova would have had trouble winning those matches, and Graf with her power could go through runs against her even on grass. Serena has athleticsm that approaches Graf and Navratilova, and even more power in her game than Graf. Martina herself admitted it was way harder for her to face someone like Steffi on grass than Chris due to her serve and power, both which Serena is superior to Steffi in. You also talk about Serena's clay competition but Serena's grass competition is light years beyond Navratilova on grass. Venus on grass >>> Evert on grass. Serena also faced Davenport, Mauresmo, Sharapova, Henin, Hingis, who are all very high quality grass courters in their primes, while Martina during her dominance at Wimbledon other than Evert faced Shriver, Turnbull, Garrison mostly. Can barely even count Hana who was in a huge slump most of that period and only played Martina at Wimbledon once (crashing out very early 70% or more of the time during this period). All that said I do think Martina is probably the grass GOAT but that doesn't mean she has it easy with Serena peak to peak on grass. Do you really think Martina would beat the Serena of the Olympics last year ever? Good luck with that. She probably would barely get her racquet on any of the serves so already half the games are gone.
Nov 23rd, 2013 02:46 PM
sweetpeas
Re: Martina Navratilova VS Serena Williams

Serena all the way,I hated that puff tennis back then!!!
Nov 23rd, 2013 02:05 PM
RVD
Re: Martina Navratilova VS Serena Williams

Quote:
Originally Posted by bandabou View Post
And what's with all this Henin-talk? Henin was only a nuicance for Serena on clay. The rest of the surfaces, Henin was never a factor against Serena.
Sammo is trying sooooo hard.
Surely he deserves a chocolate chip cookie.

Oops, I ate it.
Nov 23rd, 2013 12:53 PM
bandabou
Re: Martina Navratilova VS Serena Williams

And what's with all this Henin-talk? Henin was only a nuicance for Serena on clay. The rest of the surfaces, Henin was never a factor against Serena.
Nov 23rd, 2013 12:51 PM
bandabou
Re: Martina Navratilova VS Serena Williams

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sammo View Post
Mauresmo was a serve and volley player and she was like 1/20 of the player Navratilova was and still managed to beat Serena and win Grand Slams, so in conclusion:

have you seen the h2h..
Nov 23rd, 2013 12:14 PM
AcesHigh
Re: Martina Navratilova VS Serena Williams

Quote:
Originally Posted by rollingraces View Post
I am not sure Martina would win on clay. Henin is a greater clay courter than Martina, and peak Serena (who wasn't even as good on clay as the current one, today is her clay peak) was about equal in her matches with Henin on clay in 2002-2003.

On grass Martina would have a lot of trouble with Serena's serve, like everyone does. Martina had a lot of problems with Graf's power game on grass when they played, and got beat pretty badly in both the 88 and 89 finals, even though they went 3 sets. Martina's biggest rival on grass was Evert who never had enough power or athleticsm to really threaten her on the surface (when fit and in form)
Martina is the greatest grasscourter ever hands-down and her serve rivals Serena's on the surface. How can you get beat pretty badly in 3 sets? In 88, Martina was already in her 30s and past her peak yet she was still one of the greatest grasscourters in the game.

And today is Serena's clay peak? Based on what? What clay giants has she faced? What good claycourters is she contending with? Meanwhile, Navratilova had to contend with 2 players who were superior to Henin (Evert, Graf)
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