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Old Jun 12th, 2012, 07:55 PM   #2206
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

grafan92, very good point. Everyone is talking about the career slam, about how hard it is to achieve. And it is, because a lot of tennis greats haven't achieved that yet. But if a career slam is tough, imagine how hard it is to achieve a calendar grand slam. I have to say though, that while a non-calendar grand slam is technically more achievable than the true Grand Slam, only Serena, Martina, and Steffi have achieved it (technically, so did Maureen Connolly and Margaret Court as both won 6 in a row in achieving their calendar slams). In any case, Steffi achieved both the true Grand Slam and the non-calendar version.

I do think the Golden Slam will never be achieved by anyone else, or well at least not in my lifetime hehe.
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Old Jun 12th, 2012, 09:51 PM   #2207
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

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Originally Posted by XTN View Post
grafan92, very good point. Everyone is talking about the career slam, about how hard it is to achieve. And it is, because a lot of tennis greats haven't achieved that yet. But if a career slam is tough, imagine how hard it is to achieve a calendar grand slam. I have to say though, that while a non-calendar grand slam is technically more achievable than the true Grand Slam, only Serena, Martina, and Steffi have achieved it (technically, so did Maureen Connolly and Margaret Court as both won 6 in a row in achieving their calendar slams). In any case, Steffi achieved both the true Grand Slam and the non-calendar version.

I do think the Golden Slam will never be achieved by anyone else, or well at least not in my lifetime hehe.
I believe, like Rod Laver and Margaret Court (among many others) that the Grand Slam is simple- all 4 majors within the same calendar year. Calling anything else a "slam" is a misnomer. It's more accurately described as holding all 4 major titles at the same time. In no way is that a "slam". I remember Pete Sampras would never refer to winning a major as "winning a slam". It's inaccurate and doesn't do achieving the real Grand Slam justice. The only people who disagree and belittle the importance of THE Grand Slam, are those players who never achieved it. I'm not sure how Steffi feels, but I suspect the same way.
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Old Jun 14th, 2012, 01:19 PM   #2208
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

Steffi is 43 today!!!!!
Didn't know that Don Budge was born on June 13 th, the first man to to win calendar year slam.

On another note, loved this picture of Steffi.
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fb...bbe&permPage=1
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Old Jun 14th, 2012, 04:46 PM   #2209
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

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Steffi is 43 today!!!!!
Didn't know that Don Budge was born on June 13 th, the first man to to win calendar year slam.

On another note, loved this picture of Steffi.
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fb...bbe&permPage=1
She never fails to amaze me. Watching footage of her in action against Hingis from Taiwan a couple weeks ago, and it's so incredible that a girl born in the 60s can still move better than nearly all of the top players today! That slice pass outside the net post that she slid down the line was vintage Graf- I can't think of any player who hit this shot as well- and it's obvious it wasn't a lucky shot, but planned and well-executed. She used to pull this shot out against Navratilova. Anyway, HAPPY BIRTHDAY STEFFI!
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Old Jun 14th, 2012, 07:16 PM   #2210
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

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I believe, like Rod Laver and Margaret Court (among many others) that the Grand Slam is simple- all 4 majors within the same calendar year. Calling anything else a "slam" is a misnomer. It's more accurately described as holding all 4 major titles at the same time. In no way is that a "slam". I remember Pete Sampras would never refer to winning a major as "winning a slam". It's inaccurate and doesn't do achieving the real Grand Slam justice. The only people who disagree and belittle the importance of THE Grand Slam, are those players who never achieved it. I'm not sure how Steffi feels, but I suspect the same way.
of course, all but 5 people never achieved the true Grand Slam so I guess that's a lot of people belittling this rare achievement LOL. Seriously though, I think Steffi probably doesn't care that much what other people think of her Grand - Golden! - Slam because, at least according to her, she's never really been driven by setting or breaking records. I guess that's why she was as successful as she was, her goal was to play as well as she could and the pressure of achievement or setting records probably didn't weigh as heavily on her.

Happy birthday Steffi!
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Old Jun 14th, 2012, 07:26 PM   #2211
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

There's also talk about Sharapova's unique achievement of winning each of her 4 majors the first time she got to the finals of that event. Frankly, I find it more impressive that Steffi is the only person to have successfully defended each major the first chance she got to defend.

Of course, she is the only person to do that because she is the only person to have been able to defend each of the slams at any point in her career. Martina, Chris, Margaret, Maureen, Rod, all never achieved that. The fact that she did this when all four majors were on different surfaces makes it even more incredible. Talk about all-surface domination! At least four of each major, successfully defending each one, defending each one the first chance she got to defend, winning at least 2 of each major in two different decades. Awesome!!
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Old Jun 15th, 2012, 04:11 AM   #2212
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

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There's also talk about Sharapova's unique achievement of winning each of her 4 majors the first time she got to the finals of that event. Frankly, I find it more impressive that Steffi is the only person to have successfully defended each major the first chance she got to defend.

Of course, she is the only person to do that because she is the only person to have been able to defend each of the slams at any point in her career. Martina, Chris, Margaret, Maureen, Rod, all never achieved that. The fact that she did this when all four majors were on different surfaces makes it even more incredible. Talk about all-surface domination! At least four of each major, successfully defending each one, defending each one the first chance she got to defend, winning at least 2 of each major in two different decades. Awesome!!
Completely agree with you on this!

The court surfaces we genuinely different then, nowadays the clay isn't as slow and torturous as it used to bee grass courts don't play as fast, things have been tweaked to make it suitable to most players, no specialists anymore.

Alfa, agree on the 'grand slam' usage. And it's used lightly by even the so called experts...
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Old Jun 15th, 2012, 12:17 PM   #2213
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

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Completely agree with you on this!

The court surfaces we genuinely different then, nowadays the clay isn't as slow and torturous as it used to bee grass courts don't play as fast, things have been tweaked to make it suitable to most players, no specialists anymore.

Alfa, agree on the 'grand slam' usage. And it's used lightly by even the so called experts...
Billie Jean King has been the worst in denigrating the significance of the Grand Slam, but to her credit- only when asked and pressed to respond. Though she'd never admit it, I think she regrets having skipped the Australian Open in January 1972, and then going on to win the rest of the majors that year. That one decision cost her a Grand Slam.

I think grass was where Steffi Graf's game was at its best. She was such a natural at digging low shots off the grass blades, and actually doing something with them. I still remember the re-match against Zina Garrison in 91 or 92. Zina hit a perfect slice approach deep into Graf's forehand corner, and Steffi had to run hard to get to it, having been camped in her beloved backhand corner of the court. She not only got there, but you could see her begin to crouch very low the last couple of steps, and cracked a buggy-whip forehand cross-court for a winner. The ball couldn't have been a foot off the grass blades. Garrison was stunned, and even full-of-himself Arthur Ashe commented "now folks, that just shows you how much Graf can do with that forehand".
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Old Jun 16th, 2012, 09:57 AM   #2214
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

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Billie Jean King has been the worst in denigrating the significance of the Grand Slam, but to her credit- only when asked and pressed to respond. Though she'd never admit it, I think she regrets having skipped the Australian Open in January 1972, and then going on to win the rest of the majors that year. That one decision cost her a Grand Slam.

I think grass was where Steffi Graf's game was at its best. She was such a natural at digging low shots off the grass blades, and actually doing something with them. I still remember the re-match against Zina Garrison in 91 or 92. Zina hit a perfect slice approach deep into Graf's forehand corner, and Steffi had to run hard to get to it, having been camped in her beloved backhand corner of the court. She not only got there, but you could see her begin to crouch very low the last couple of steps, and cracked a buggy-whip forehand cross-court for a winner. The ball couldn't have been a foot off the grass blades. Garrison was stunned, and even full-of-himself Arthur Ashe commented "now folks, that just shows you how much Graf can do with that forehand".
I remember that 91 match vs Zina! It was a match full of winners from Steffi. She just practically hit winners from anywhere around the court!
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Old Jun 17th, 2012, 01:21 AM   #2215
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

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Originally Posted by alfajeffster View Post
Billie Jean King has been the worst in denigrating the significance of the Grand Slam, but to her credit- only when asked and pressed to respond. Though she'd never admit it, I think she regrets having skipped the Australian Open in January 1972, and then going on to win the rest of the majors that year. That one decision cost her a Grand Slam.

I think grass was where Steffi Graf's game was at its best. She was such a natural at digging low shots off the grass blades, and actually doing something with them. I still remember the re-match against Zina Garrison in 91 or 92. Zina hit a perfect slice approach deep into Graf's forehand corner, and Steffi had to run hard to get to it, having been camped in her beloved backhand corner of the court. She not only got there, but you could see her begin to crouch very low the last couple of steps, and cracked a buggy-whip forehand cross-court for a winner. The ball couldn't have been a foot off the grass blades. Garrison was stunned, and even full-of-himself Arthur Ashe commented "now folks, that just shows you how much Graf can do with that forehand".
And in that year she also hit an incredible shot to hold serve at 6-6 in the third against Sabatini, when the Argentine charged the net with a deep cross-court BH and Steffi hit her trademark inside-out FH for a passing-shot behing Gabriela, it was an AWSOME shot!
BTW, I didn't know Ashe was full-of-himself, could you elaborate a little more?
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Old Jun 17th, 2012, 01:52 AM   #2216
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

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And in that year she also hit an incredible shot to hold serve at 6-6 in the third against Sabatini, when the Argentine charged the net with a deep cross-court BH and Steffi hit her trademark inside-out FH for a passing-shot behing Gabriela, it was an AWSOME shot!
BTW, I didn't know Ashe was full-of-himself, could you elaborate a little more?
Don't get me wrong- he was a really great tennis player. His commentary skills left much to be desired. Ever since his activism against apartheid back in the 70s, he let the notoriety get to his ego, and it never stopped growing. When he was making comments on a player and any given point, he always berated their choice of shot or court placement or anything he could find that was wrong, and rarely gave out compliments. He was always better than them, and his demeanor of arrogance and pontificating was astounding at times. He fancied himself as some sort of old sage of wisdom and knowledge that you were privileged to know. He ripped Zina apart from the booth in that Graf match- constantly picking at her, and only on a couple of occasions mentioning how great Steffi was playing. The only other shot he was complimentary of in that match was when Graf hit an outstanding backhand overhead angled off for clean winner. We actually got a laugh out of him on that one.
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Old Jun 17th, 2012, 04:16 AM   #2217
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

Dear God, he seemed a real pain in the ass then! How unbearable. And I didn't you wrong as I understood it was about his commenting and not his playing skills which, no matter how great yours are, you CAN'T be better than every player in every shot or point. Sad.
Is it "justified" then than the main tennis court in the States is called after him, or people there just feel it would've been better if another big American idol were chosen (Connors or Evert come to mind) instead?
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Old Jun 17th, 2012, 11:12 AM   #2218
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

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...Is it "justified" then than the main tennis court in the States is called after him, or people there just feel it would've been better if another big American idol were chosen (Connors or Evert come to mind) instead?
Interesting that you say this. I'm one of those Americans who's not afraid to confront issues or afraid of hurting any particular group. Arthur Ashe was all about race- from his playing in South Africa, to his raised black fist after beating Connors at Wimbledon. Though his campaign will never admit it, Barack Obama was elected to the White House because he was black, not because of his credentials. Technically, he's not even black, he's a mulatto (his mother was white). He has no experience with being president of a business or governing anything. He wasn't qualified, but was elected because of race. Arthur eventually became so full of himself when all the attention was heaped on his battle with AIDS, that he let it get to him. The USTA (formerly USLTA) had a monkey on its back in that it was always an organization steeped in blue-blooded white private club members, and so the natural choice was to name the new stadium after him. I realize this post will upset some people, but they'll get over it. Arthur Ashe was one of the better tennis players of his era, and had a great game, but he most certainly was no where near the best. Controversial at times, but never the best player.
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Old Jun 17th, 2012, 07:43 PM   #2219
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

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And in that year she also hit an incredible shot to hold serve at 6-6 in the third against Sabatini, when the Argentine charged the net with a deep cross-court BH and Steffi hit her trademark inside-out FH for a passing-shot behing Gabriela, it was an AWSOME shot!
BTW, I didn't know Ashe was full-of-himself, could you elaborate a little more?
LOVEEEEE this point On tv she was off screen and suddenly you just saw the ball coming back
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Old Jun 17th, 2012, 09:57 PM   #2220
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Re: Steffi Graf Admiration Thread Vol 2

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