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Old May 27th, 2004, 06:34 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert1
Hi Andy, I think I should have renamed this thread into "how good was Austin in her best years, the years she was a top-player". Would you accept it then?

As for the number 1 of the "real rankings", it's not quite right what you say. Austin was the number one longer than Evert or Navratilova in 1980 and she was ahead of Navratilova throughout 1981, so a clear dominance cannot be seen here. Also, as I said above, I didn't take the real rankings (as you didn't take them to make your own rankings, cause what is the point of doing new rankings when you use old ones. It's if I'd say, Andrea Jaeger was number 4 in the world in 81, there had to be a reason for this so it doesn't make sense calculating this whole thing over and put her on six). You see what I mean?

btw here are the rankings year by year according to the statistics:

1979: 1. Navratilova, 2. Austin, 3. Evert
1980: 1. Evert, 2. Austin, 3. Navratilova
1981: 1. Austin, 2. Evert, 3. Navratilova

I was surprised myself about the 1979 outcome, but Austin's head2head, match-winning-percentage and consistency (Evert lost 4 times before the semis!) was better than Evert's.

1981 was closer than I had thought, Austin's 4 pre-semi losses almost spoilt it.

If you add up the rankings for each year, it's the same result for that period 1979 to 1981:
1. Austin,
2. Evert,
3. Navratilova.
"Austin was the number one longer than Evert or Navratilova in 1980" - true, but like Clijsters last year and Davenport the year before, that becomes less a big deal as it wasn't backed up by Slam wins. Also, your rankings 'according to the statistics' - well, I already posted the year-end rankings for those years, and Chris was No. 1 at the end of 1981, not Tracy.
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Old May 27th, 2004, 07:25 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy T
The competition in 78 was really really close, Robert, so much so that you had MN ranked #1 by the WTA and CE made World Champion by the ITF. Jan-Jul was all Martina and Jul-Dec was all Chrissie. Tracy A. was #6 in 78, which brings me back to your starting point - the selection of these 3 years as the time frame. That period "optimises" Tracy's stats - so the assumption upon which you base the argument is slanted towards T.A. from the word go. Martina's career is not divided 73-78, 79-81, 82-ff, etc, and Chris' career is not divided in a way which gives a 79-81 period either. If you were to do your analysis with the phases in their careers as a starting point, the 79-81 timeframe would not figure as a defined period. Do you see what I'm trying to say?

To move from the starting point to your finishing point, concluding that T.A. was "the best" over that whole period is also untenable. Noone would dispuite the fact that she had a brief period or two of pre-eminence within those three years but the other two women you mention sat much more securely on the throne for most of the time: Martina Jan 79-Mar 80 and Chris Nov 80-Dec 81. Tracy is tennis' Lady Jane Grey - England's 9 days' queen who usurped the throne from the Tudor sisters - and got the chop when order was restored.
Oh I like the comparison there. So will that make Chrissie Bloody Mary and Martina N the Virgin Queen? HA!
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Old May 27th, 2004, 07:26 AM   #18
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or several bloody marys and several virgin queens. ;-)
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Old May 27th, 2004, 12:51 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Declan
"Austin was the number one longer than Evert or Navratilova in 1980" - true, but like Clijsters last year and Davenport the year before, that becomes less a big deal as it wasn't backed up by Slam wins. Also, your rankings 'according to the statistics' - well, I already posted the year-end rankings for those years, and Chris was No. 1 at the end of 1981, not Tracy.
Your contradicting yourself. First you say Austin's no. 1 ranking wasn't backed up, but in 81 the ranking counts (even though Evert's wasn't backed up as much as Austin's would have, as Austin won 3 majors, Evert only 1).
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Old May 27th, 2004, 01:07 PM   #20
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your h2h with evert stats are not right, robert1; tracy led in those years 9-4, not 9-3, and 4 of those tracy wins came in a 2 1/2 month period (3 in 2 back-to-back tournaments) in an across-the-boards rut from chris. so if we're using our eyes to see, instead of the computer rankings, as you suggest for this thread, that spells something out about the head to head variance. the following match, after the 1981 ear-mark, is evert d. austin 6-0 6-0.

also, ask if evert was a better player before the year of 1979...RESOUNDING YES...and ask if evert was also better in years after 1981...RESOUNDING YES. the presence of john lloyd (as a personal, not professional factor) had more to do with that than the presence of tracy austin. Tracy came in at the right time, as i alluded to earlier, in that both chris & martina were transitioning, and history needed a breath of fresh air for that period to keep it interesting... that was tracy austin and andrea jaeger. but it was just a nice breeze, and left as quickly as it came.
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Old May 27th, 2004, 01:24 PM   #21
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Andy was right, supporting Austin you're having a hard time as everybody either loves Evert or Navratilova. I bet if the results were exactly the other way round, they'd still say Austin wasn't the best, even though nobody except for Preacherfan found an improvement to my ranking calculation, which proves that in her hey-days in those 3 years Austin was overall the best player.

Anyway, talking about 1981, I was comparing Jaeger, Mandlikova, Shriver to find number 4,5,6 of that year.

Here it is:

1. Tournament wins: Jaeger, Mandlikova, Shriver
2. Matchwin percentage: Jaeger, Mandlikova, Shriver
3. Consistency (losses before quarterfinal): Jaeger, Mandlikova, Shriver
4. head-to-head: Mandlikova, Shriver, Jaeger
5. Majors: Mandlikova, Jaeger, Shriver
6. Results at the tournaments all 3 of them played in: Mandlikova, Shriver, Jaeger

In total: 1. Mandlikova, 2. Jaeger, 3. Shriver.
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Old May 27th, 2004, 01:31 PM   #22
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Daze, again: This is a thread about 79 to 81, I don't argue Evert being the better player than Austin in 78,82, whenever, nor Evert playing better Tennis before 79 and after 82. That's why that 60 60 simply doesn't count which was at the end of 82.
Austin's head2head is FAR better than Evert's from 79 to 81 - no doubt about that. Whether it's 9:3,9:4 and even if you give less importance to some wins because they were within a short timeframe (which IMO is a strange thing to do, but even if...), Austin is better in that category. In all 3 years Chris had a negativ head2head vs. Austin+Navratilova (in total).
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Old May 27th, 2004, 02:29 PM   #23
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why is it strange? do you play tennis? dont you think if a player has a slump that it is not representative of their level of play? and therefore is also an asteriks comment on the level of play of the players who beat you during that slump. The other players beating evert at that same time by similar scores are people she regularly beat 3 & 2. this suggests something.

my pre-79 and post-81 comment were not to suggest evert was just a better player than austin overall, but that those supposedly great results of austin come at a time when evert was not at the height of form. so again, that effects results and the perception of the playing level of players in comparison.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert1
Daze, again: This is a thread about 79 to 81, I don't argue Evert being the better player than Austin in 78,82, whenever, nor Evert playing better Tennis before 79 and after 82. That's why that 60 60 simply doesn't count which was at the end of 82.
Austin's head2head is FAR better than Evert's from 79 to 81 - no doubt about that. Whether it's 9:3,9:4 and even if you give less importance to some wins because they were within a short timeframe (which IMO is a strange thing to do, but even if...), Austin is better in that category. In all 3 years Chris had a negativ head2head vs. Austin+Navratilova (in total).
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Old May 27th, 2004, 06:10 PM   #24
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Robert1, if you did change your title to How Good was Tracy Austin at her peak and then changed your conclusion to "she was able to challenge Chris and then Martina, neither of whom were playing their best tennis for some of this period, but never really overtook both of them at the same for other than a fleeting moment or two at best", we'd be in full agreement.


I've been setting my sights on your stats for a while and i do have a few broadsides to fire but I think given the way you have made your calculations, one cannonball will do.
Please remember that I still don't buy the intial premise or really see what this is trying to prove.

Anyway, re point 3: although the series championships were important tournaments, I don't think they were ever considered as equal to Wimbledon, the US Open or the French Open by the tennis world or the general public. No player then (or now) would have traded a Wimbledon for an Avon title. Let us be generous and say they were equivalent to the Australian Opens of this time, however. In this case, we cannot accord the Avon Championships of 1980 the same weight as, say, the US Open of that year. How shall we split it 2pts for a Wimbledon-US-French and 1 point for an Aus Open-Avon-Colgate?

1979
Martina's 1 Wimbledon, 1 Avon and 1 Colgate = 4points
Tracy's US = 2pts, as does Chrissie's French.
Martina is therefore #1 for 1979

In 1980,
Tracy wins the Avon and Colgate titles but no grand slam = 2points
Martina no grand slam and no series champs = zilcho
Chrissie wins the US and French titles = 4points
Evonne wins Wimbledon = 2 points
Hana wins in Oz = 1 point
Chris is therefore #1 in 1980

1981
Tracy wins the US and Colgate titles in 81 = 3pts
Chris wins Wimbledon = 2 points
Martina wins the Avon and Australian titles = 2 points
Hana wins the French = 2 points
Tracy is #1 for 81

Totals:
Martina 4 +0 +2 =6
Tracy 2+2+3 = 7
Chris 2+4+2 = 8

If we attack this problem from a different vantage point, we could say (again, I'm not saying I think so; this is just to drive the point home) that in the cases where the Avon, Colgate and Aussie opens did attract all three players, they should get 2 points too. In that case,
1979
Martina gets 6 points
Tracy 2
Chris 2
Same result only more emphatic.

1980
Evonne 2
Chris 4
Tracy 3
Hana 1
Martina 0
Chris remains at #1

1981
Chris 2 points
Tracy 4 points
Hana 2 points
Martina 3 points

Tracy stays #1

Overall totals 1979-81

Martina :9 points
Tracy: 9 points
Chris: 8 points

Hey presto - a completely different result! Chris goes from first to last with a simple bit of arithmetic.

Conclusion: your definition of "major" and equation of Wimbledon with the Colgate/Toyota Series Championships changes everything. Point 3 can therefore have almost any winner you want. If Chris comes top there, she then heads 3/6 categories and walks off with your "best player" award.

Which tournaments you included/excluded has a bearing on many of the other categories (1, 2, 4, 6) so it is hard to say too much about those for now.

Sorry if I sound ruthless but on this one I really do think the general perception is correct: she was squashed out by Martina and Chris; like lady jane grey, she was a claimant but she was never the rightful queen.
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Old May 27th, 2004, 06:18 PM   #25
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Good point, AndyT. I still think that that with all that balance, it does come into play that Evert was in four other Slam finals and Austin had no others. While R/U is not what anyone desires, it's better than the earlier exits by Austin.
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Old May 27th, 2004, 06:32 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by preacherfan
Good point, AndyT. I still think that that with all that balance, it does come into play that Evert was in four other Slam finals and Austin had no others. While R/U is not what anyone desires, it's better than the earlier exits by Austin.
a runner-up leaves with a trophy for a reason. a semi-finalist and quarter-finalist do not.
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Old May 27th, 2004, 06:47 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy T
Robert1, if you did change your title to How Good was Tracy Austin at her peak and then changed your conclusion to "she was able to challenge Chris and then Martina, neither of whom were playing their best tennis for some of this period, but never really overtook both of them at the same for other than a fleeting moment or two at best", we'd be in full agreement.
Austin was AT LEAST as good as the 2 throughout those 3 years, don't you think that? Also I find it a bit disrespectful to say she only won cause the others didn't play good tennis. I mean how good ie. how bad was women's tennis before 79?? For a few years there was no one except for Evert, and that was a part of her dominance. IMO women's Tennis evolved from the late 70s on with Mandlikova, Austin, Jaeger, Shriver coming up, so it's quite obvious that Evert was overtaken not only because she married but also because new super talents came up. Navratilova surely hadn't reached her prime, but her game went up and got much better from 1978 on so saying she wasn't playing her best Tennis at the time (I mean she was good enough to win dozens of tournaments and dominate anyone except for Evert and Austin) is a bit rough.
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Old May 27th, 2004, 07:01 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert1
Austin was AT LEAST as good as the 2 throughout those 3 years, don't you think that? Also I find it a bit disrespectful to say she only won cause the others didn't play good tennis. I mean how good ie. how bad was women's tennis before 79?? For a few years there was no one except for Evert, and that was a part of her dominance. IMO women's Tennis evolved from the late 70s on with Mandlikova, Austin, Jaeger, Shriver coming up, so it's quite obvious that Evert was overtaken not only because she married but also because new super talents came up. Navratilova surely hadn't reached her prime, but her game went up and got much better from 1978 on so saying she wasn't playing her best Tennis at the time (I mean she was good enough to win dozens of tournaments and dominate anyone except for Evert and Austin) is a bit rough.
now wait, robert1, this is getting silly. goolagong is far superior to shriver in any way shape or form, and the competition of margaret court, billie jean king, as well as martina (who 'not at her best' is still as tough as facing a mandlikova 85% of the time) not to mention virginia wade & others does NOT count as no competition. there's a thin line between wanting to push an opinion and ignoring some of the greatest players of womens tennis history and placing them beneath the likes of andrea jaeger, much less tracy austin.

seles is much more to talk about than tracy.

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Old May 27th, 2004, 07:10 PM   #29
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Andy, I totally agree on your major tournament rankings, they are exactly the same than my calculations. So I'm not sure which cannonball you're talking about.
1979: Navratilova, Austin, Evert
1980: Evert, Austin, Navratilova
1981: Austin, Navratilova, Evert.

Your calculation also proved that it was an equal match and that was my itention: Tracy Austin was (at least I might add) as good as Evert and Navratilova in the time span from 1979 for 1981. So, thanks! Sorry, but I must add, for someone who doesn't like this discussion you're investing lots of energy into it... Is Alfa in Paris? (Sorry).

"Tracy Austin was unbeatable last year, but she's not quite as good anymore" - Virginia Ruzici, 1981.

I don't know much about people's perception or general feelings about it back then. I just see the clear figures and they say that it was at least a fight of 3 for 3 years. And watching Martina rooting for Chris at the US Open final 1979 says something...
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Old May 27th, 2004, 07:15 PM   #30
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Fresh wind came up in 1979,1980, Daze, and definetely not by Court or Wade. Yes, in my opinion Evert ruled in 77 and 78 not only because she was a very good player but also because the competition wasn't as good as in say 1971 to 1973 or 1981.
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