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Old Apr 4th, 2006, 03:23 AM   #1
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Kings of the Court-Classic men's tennis

Or will the idea get me banned from the board?

Recently, after spending so much time rewatching 1970s matches featuring women, I've branched out to some of the men's matches. And they are incredibly entertaining.

The one match I always wanted to see but never did was the 1972 WCT finals from Dallas, where Laver beat Rosewall. Last night, I got to watch the highlights, and what highlights they were. You can easily see why they billed as the greatest tennis match ever.

I also saw a good clay court match between Laver and Ashe that really gave you a good sense of Laver's groundstrokes. They were great, but what was amazing was his ability to unleash a forehand or topspin backhand from virtually nowhere or on the run.

By the way, the Laver-Ashe match, which I think was played in Puerto Rico, also contained the Pressure Point final tie-breaker between Chris and Betty Stove. It was pretty entertaining. Betty was certainly a bit lanky on the court, but she was amazingly talented. She trailed Chris by 6-4 in the tie-breaker, before leveling at 6-6 with some pretty amazing shots. At that point, it was sudden death, and Betty struck a forehand long on, I believe, the fourth shot of the rally.

Last edited by Rollo : Apr 5th, 2006 at 04:50 PM.
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Old Apr 4th, 2006, 11:18 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jem
Or will the idea get me banned from the board?

Recently, after spending so much time rewatching 1970s matches featuring women, I've branched out to some of the men's matches. And they are incredibly entertaining.

The one match I always wanted to see but never did was the 1972 WCT finals from Dallas, where Laver beat Rosewall. Last night, I got to watch the highlights, and what highlights they were. You can easily see why they billed as the greatest tennis match ever.

I also saw a good clay court match between Laver and Ashe that really gave you a good sense of Laver's groundstrokes. They were great, but what was amazing was his ability to unleash a forehand or topspin backhand from virtually nowhere or on the run.

By the way, the Laver-Ashe match, which I think was played in Puerto Rico, also contained the Pressure Point final tie-breaker between Chris and Betty Stove. It was pretty entertaining. Betty was certainly a bit lanky on the court, but she was amazingly talented. She trailed Chris by 6-4 in the tie-breaker, before leveling at 6-6 with some pretty amazing shots. At that point, it was sudden death, and Betty struck a forehand long on, I believe, the fourth shot of the rally.
Yes, Jem, I think we're sufficiently past the need to keep the two tours separate to placate the militant lesbian contingent of 30-40 years ago. Many thanks to them for slowly (but surely) becoming part of the big picture, and for what they've accomplished and continue to accomplish, but let's move on and discuss the whole picture and return full circle to do the game itself justice. There are so many things that a man can do with the ball that a woman cannot, and vice versa. Why not return to including everyone under the tennis umbrella? Hell, we might even learn a few things from an aging Rod Laver or Jack Kramer about the evolution of the women's game.
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Old Apr 4th, 2006, 01:27 PM   #3
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Consider this a safe haven thread to discuss all the classic men's tennis you want Jem
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Old Apr 4th, 2006, 02:40 PM   #4
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hear hear!

i posted once in MTF about blast to the past & there was no activity--not, no RESPONSE to the thread, but no ACTIVITY in BFTP, for 2 months. Horrifying. and then it was all 19 year olds...

but i am a bit perplexed by it all. I grew up with a DEFINITE preference for ladies tennis.

now i watch connors, borg, nastase, mcenroe, vilas....and i cant IMAGINE why i didnt like to watch them at the time???!!!! boy, did i miss out. but i am more than happy to relive those lost moments now.

and i cant believe how many SUPER HOT guys were in those tight little clothes running around on hot sunny days grunting and sweating. there are moments i cant tear my eyes off the screen.
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Old Apr 4th, 2006, 03:13 PM   #5
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I think its a great idea. BFTP on MTF is absolutely DEAD! People post there once in ten days! No-one's posted on the McEnroe thread for TWO MONTHS!

The posters here have some great insights, and personally I think it'd be great to get their views on the men's game as well. Its a hell of a lot better than reading teenagers' views on what a weakling J-Mac was.

Thanks Rollo
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Old Apr 4th, 2006, 03:18 PM   #6
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I've always wanted to watch a Laver match, but I've never had the opportunity. I've heard that he had amazing touch, and wonderful instincts. What was his game like? Best shots? Strengths and weaknesses? Anyone here care to share?
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Old Apr 4th, 2006, 05:34 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by tennisrox
I've always wanted to watch a Laver match, but I've never had the opportunity. I've heard that he had amazing touch, and wonderful instincts. What was his game like? Best shots? Strengths and weaknesses? Anyone here care to share?
I'm a little too young to have watched him play in his prime, but I have seen lots of him on video, on different surfaces (again, somebody please find classic 60s and 70s matches from Roland Garros and share them, share them, sell them!). Rocket was here in my hometown a few years back, and he was about a year after having suffered the stroke, but his game and strokes were fully recovered. John McEnroe is actually one of the best people to listen to about Rocket, because John idolized him when he was a kid, and Rod was at the end of his playing career. He was the first one to bring in heavy topspin off both wings, and he also had all the shots. Lots of people describe players as having all the shots, but Rod Laver really did have all of them at his disposal. He hit a very heavy ball for someone so short, and his lefty serve was trouble for anyone, because he could and did back up his delivery with excellent hands at the net, and he was quick to get in there for the kill. I would say that his best shot was his backhand. If you want to see a relatively current player who hit the backhand (both slice and topspin) nearly identical to Rocket- get ahold of a Petr Korda match (when he was on). Their backhands are nearly identical, and none of the shots have any hitches- elbow close into the body and very difficult to read. Rod's topspin backhand passing shot was drop dead killer. Have I gone on enough?

Anyone else?
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Old Apr 4th, 2006, 05:47 PM   #8
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In the next day or two I'll be watching the 84 French mens final. I think it'll go nicely in my small, but growing collection of mens matches. I've really enjoyed watching Mac's US Open battles with Borg and Connors.
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Old Apr 4th, 2006, 06:26 PM   #9
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Maybe this is the place to congratulate Yannick Noah on his son's award as Most Outstanding Player in the NCAA basketball final four. Watching him storm toward the basket and dunk reminded me of seeing his dad lunge for a volley or leap for a smash. Great athleticism!
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Old Apr 4th, 2006, 09:30 PM   #10
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You Communists! You swine! How DARE you miscreants desecrate this sacred, hallowed BFTP ground with talk of the retired boys of the ATP?!?! For SHAME. (I mean, I'm ALWAYS appropriate, of course. )

Take 2: GREAT idea. I learned long ago to avoid the general WTA world (unless there is something specific I am looking for, such as the recommended Joan's letter to Chris and Sally's letter to Serena), and while I have seen that some BFTP folks post on the men's BFTP- as others have noted, there just isn't enough activity there to keep me coming back.

I am fine with all topics serious and campy here. From a lust talk (I do recall having my fair share of teenage palpitations over the likes of Ashe, Borg and Vilas among others, and those SHORTS they used to wear, God BLESS those shorts)- to serious subjects- count me in. I think my partner and I only have one Laver match- but perhaps we could have a "Dissect a Men's Match" in the near future.

Let's face it, kids- enough of us are getting long-enough-in-the-tooth that we'll soon be comparing who makes the best Depends product and the consistency of our stools- so we might as well open things up NOW for more topics, while we still have a few of our faculties left. Of course, those not interested can ignore this thread.

And I also second the congrats to Noah. My partner and I caught the end of the game after playing at our local public tennis court. Talk about having an accomplishment WAY early in the game that puts you out forever from under the shadow of dad's accomplishments. I am sure that Noah will be heading to the NBA pronto.
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Old Apr 5th, 2006, 04:01 AM   #11
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Let's face it, kids- enough of us are getting long-enough-in-the-tooth that we'll soon be comparing who makes the best Depends product and the consistency of our stools
god, lets hope not.
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Old Apr 5th, 2006, 06:00 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nelslus
Let's face it, kids- enough of us are getting long-enough-in-the-tooth that we'll soon be comparing who makes the best Depends product and the consistency of our stools- so we might as well open things up NOW for more topics, while we still have a few of our faculties left.
Speak for yourself.
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Old Apr 5th, 2006, 08:00 AM   #13
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I'm a little too young to have watched him play in his prime, but I have seen lots of him on video, on different surfaces (again, somebody please find classic 60s and 70s matches from Roland Garros and share them, share them, sell them!). Rocket was here in my hometown a few years back, and he was about a year after having suffered the stroke, but his game and strokes were fully recovered. John McEnroe is actually one of the best people to listen to about Rocket, because John idolized him when he was a kid, and Rod was at the end of his playing career. He was the first one to bring in heavy topspin off both wings, and he also had all the shots. Lots of people describe players as having all the shots, but Rod Laver really did have all of them at his disposal. He hit a very heavy ball for someone so short, and his lefty serve was trouble for anyone, because he could and did back up his delivery with excellent hands at the net, and he was quick to get in there for the kill. I would say that his best shot was his backhand. If you want to see a relatively current player who hit the backhand (both slice and topspin) nearly identical to Rocket- get ahold of a Petr Korda match (when he was on). Their backhands are nearly identical, and none of the shots have any hitches- elbow close into the body and very difficult to read. Rod's topspin backhand passing shot was drop dead killer. Have I gone on enough?
Thanks Alfa. Now i'll have to dig up a Petr Korda match from somewhere.
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Old Apr 5th, 2006, 12:02 PM   #14
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Thanks Alfa. Now i'll have to dig up a Petr Korda match from somewhere.
Oh, do yourself a favor and go for the real thing. While I thoroughly enjoyed Petr Korda when he was on (one of those rare people who was "unbeatable" on any given day), he was so often spraying balls all over the court, and he didn't have nearly the serve that Rocket did. One of my biggest (it's possibly my biggest) regret is when Rod was here a couple years ago, all the major corporate sponsors kept him on the first two courts of our club, and little old me was out on court 6. After we were done, I stayed on court 3 to hit a little with a buddy of mine (courts 1/2 were separated from 3-6 by the clubhouse). Rod peeked his head around the curtain on my court, looking to see what was going on. I was so totally flabbergasted, that I just kept hitting. It was probably my one chance to ask the great Rocket Rod Laver if he would mind hitting a few volleys with me- and I know he would've, in a heartbeat.

One of the matches that's pretty high on my list of tennis videos to get ahold of is the 1969 Wimbledon final between Laver and Newcombe. I've seen a few clips of it, and it was a bright sunny day, and you can actually see the ball (which isn't always the case with Wimbledon coverage), and the shotmaking is spectacular. There's one particular topspin backhand crosscourt passing shot that leaves Newk just plain flat-footed. He had no clue where it was going, and Newk was pretty good at the net himself.

C'mon Jem (and anyone else here less verbose than me- what can I say, a nail head has been hit), give us some of your men's tennis memory, or at least a match or shot you remember. Obviously, I can go on for quite a while. My favorite growing up was Bjorn Borg. Anyone have any Borgian stories?
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Old Apr 5th, 2006, 02:31 PM   #15
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http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/ten...ory?id=2396935

Pistol Pete is back. What do you say about this comment about Roger?

Quote:
Sampras conceded that Federer's dominance, somewhat like his own during a big part of his career, is not necessarily the healthiest thing for the game.

"I put myself on the court against him and see the game and see there's no one out there that has a big enough game, a big enough serve that can back it up and really put any pressure on him," Sampras said.

"The bigger server, [Andy] Roddick, you know, stays back. That's an uphill struggle for him. I think I would stick to my game and hopefully be good enough to beat him."
Having seen roger annihilate the likes of Roddick, Ljubjo and co. i'm not sure I agree with Pete. I don't think Roger has probs with big servers. Sounds like Pete is slightly hesistant to acknowledge just how gifted roger is.
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