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View Poll Results: Which player in the Open Era has the Highest Tennis IQ?

M. Navratilova 23 7.62%
A. Radwanska 45 14.90%
J. Henin 36 11.92%
C. Evert 10 3.31%
M. Hingis 99 32.78%
A. Mauresmo 5 1.66%
S. Williams 51 16.89%
S. Graf 8 2.65%
Other (please specify) 17 5.63%
Even w.the criteria listed, too hard to compare 8 2.65%
Voters: 302. You may not vote on this poll

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Old Jan 22nd, 2013, 04:11 AM   #91
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Re: Which players have the highest 'TENNIS' IQ?

Out of this list? Evert, then Legend.

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Old Jan 22nd, 2013, 04:41 AM   #92
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Re: Which players have the highest 'TENNIS' IQ?

#1 Hingis.

#2 Graf. Graf was a very sneaky player...gotta give her props for that.
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Old Jan 22nd, 2013, 07:05 AM   #93
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Re: Which players have the highest 'TENNIS' IQ?

Serena's has gotten much better recently. She has the highest of any active player.

Active player.

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Old Jan 22nd, 2013, 07:59 AM   #94
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Re: Which players have the highest 'TENNIS' IQ?

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Originally Posted by RenaPova View Post
This so much. Just because she doesn't have to pull the variety out to beat players doesn't mean she doesn't have it.



This match shows her tennis IQ >>>>

Her placement and disguise on her serve (as always) to set up the v-plays, her slices, using topspin-heavy shots to work Henin off the court and give her no pace, the wrong-footing.

Part of her tennis IQ is that she knows she doesn't need to use it to win, so only uses it when it's needed. In this sense, she has one of the best shot-selections on tour.
So much this !! I was thinking of that exact match as well.
I don't know why people disliked it, despite the heartbreaking ending, I loved it. Sure it was not spectacular (minus the end of the second set that was all vintage Justine) , but very tactical. I thought it was a nice change from the usual ballbashing game we could see in most of WTA matches.

And in my opinion, that's what characterized their matches.
Henin did a major tactical mistake : the way she attacked Serena's second serve. IMO that cost her the match (or we could say Serena's seconde serve tactics won her the match), she was too aggressive on those, she wanted to take the early advantage in that rallye. That was not a good move, because at the beginning it was already a flop, and I don't know why but she kept playing that tactic. Moby was saying how stubborn Justine could be , especially in relation to her tactics during a match.


Anyway, to answer the question, I really don't know. More than talking about who has the highest tennis IQ, I prefer to talk about the tennis IQ of players because well, I guess Hingis is an obvious answer.
But anyway, I've never seen Evert/Graf play enough to notice a change in their tactics, depending on their opponent. I can't judge.
I agree that Serena is very underrated. I don't think you have to be smart all your career to prove you understand tennis, actually when she was younger, Serena had all her physical abilities, that fire and explositivity in her groundstrokes, and moved really well. But her serve was not as performant as it is today.
Now that she has gotten older, she changed a few things in order to last longer on the tour -- and I feel it's part to the tennis IQ as well.
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Old Jan 22nd, 2013, 08:01 AM   #95
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Re: Which players have the highest 'TENNIS' IQ?

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Originally Posted by Sir Stefwhit View Post
i don't remember any player owning her that she was able to turn around a losing H2H against. She had bad records against Hingis, Serena, Davenport, and Venus- and while she did manage to get a wins over everyone of them, she wasn't able to turn around any those losing H2Hs into winning records.
.
Really? Steffi Graf, for one. She was 0-3 for first three matches and the next seven were 4-3. Seles, in her teens, was always improving. That was one of the most remarkable things about her. Look at her slam record and who improved every year at every event barring that shock loss to Ferrando in US Open 1990. Post stabbing is not worth talking about. She was totally out of shape most of the time to be really competitive against those players, let alone trying to improve.

But yeah I agree that mental strength is not tennis IQ. I think a prerequisite to having good tennis IQ is that you have to be a good doubles player as well as singles.
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Old Jan 22nd, 2013, 08:03 AM   #96
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Re: Which players have the highest 'TENNIS' IQ?

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Originally Posted by Sam L View Post

But yeah I agree that mental strength is not tennis IQ. I think a prerequisite to having good tennis IQ is that you have to be a good doubles player as well as singles.
Justine Henin was not a good doubles player (well compared to the others), and I don't think we can say she doesn't have a good tennis IQ.
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Old Jan 22nd, 2013, 08:19 AM   #97
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Re: Which players have the highest 'TENNIS' IQ?

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Originally Posted by debby View Post
Justine Henin was not a good doubles player (well compared to the others), and I don't think we can say she doesn't have a good tennis IQ.
I just say that because they tend to have more all rounded games so they can go to Plan B. Ok so prerequisite probably isn't the right word, more like a good indicator. Henin is probably an exception though.
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Old Jan 22nd, 2013, 08:20 AM   #98
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Re: Which players have the highest 'TENNIS' IQ?

Fair enough.

So what about Kim Clijsters' tennis IQ ?
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Old Jan 22nd, 2013, 08:23 AM   #99
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Re: Which players have the highest 'TENNIS' IQ?

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Originally Posted by debby View Post
Fair enough.

So what about Kim Clijsters' tennis IQ ?
I don't know. I haven't thought about her for a very long time.
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Old Jan 30th, 2013, 05:09 AM   #100
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Re: Which players have the highest 'TENNIS' IQ?

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Really? Steffi Graf, for one. She was 0-3 for first three matches and the next seven were 4-3. Seles, in her teens, was always improving. That was one of the most remarkable things about her. Look at her slam record and who improved every year at every event barring that shock loss to Ferrando in US Open 1990. Post stabbing is not worth talking about. She was totally out of shape most of the time to be really competitive against those players, let alone trying to improve.

But yeah I agree that mental strength is not tennis IQ. I think a prerequisite to having good tennis IQ is that you have to be a good doubles player as well as singles.
Oh I see...lol.

Wel I guess I didn't see the rivalry that way. I took it season by season, I think that gives a more accurate view of momentum.

89 season: Graf leads 3-0
90 season: Seles leads 2-0
91: Graf leads 2-0
92: Seles leads 2-1
93:

So I pretty much saw that rivalry pretty even w.a slight edge to Graf but that getting off topic. With regards to .seles and her on court IQ I think she's a player with so many admirable qualities and so many traits that made her one of the games greats but I wouldn't say she was all that strategic. And using the criteria I set forth I wouldn't go out of my way to mention her before so many others.
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Old Jan 30th, 2013, 05:50 AM   #101
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Re: Which players have the highest 'TENNIS' IQ?

Anyone in that list except Graf and Serena. They are not as dependent to strategy as the rest and they never play so many varied points. They solve their problems mostly with their weapon, athleticism and mental strength.
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Old Jan 30th, 2013, 10:05 AM   #102
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Re: Which players have the highest 'TENNIS' IQ?

Maria Sharapova, Ana Ivanovic or Anna Kournikova.

On theirs bank accounts is way more money compared to ATP and WTA players with similar results.

So they use theirs shots on smartest way in tennis history
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Old Jan 30th, 2013, 07:21 PM   #103
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Re: Which players have the highest 'TENNIS' IQ?

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Maria Sharapova, Ana Ivanovic or Anna Kournikova....
Funny you mention Kournikva- even though u were talking about what they did off court to make them smart I would remind you that on court Kournikova had what I would consider a really high tennis IQ. She was very strategic in her play, had variation, had several ways she could win a match and compared to the others you mentioned I would say she was in a different league and far superior in that aspect. Of course she had tons of problems in her game ranging from bad technique and she wasn't the most mentally strongest so she was limited by her weaknesses and ultimately the least successful of the three (not to mention she had a short career because of injuries).

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Anyone in that list except Graf and Serena. They are not as dependent to strategy as the rest and they never play so many varied points. They solve their problems mostly with their weapon, athleticism and mental strength.
I can see your point with Graf although I will add that on the backhand side she has tons of variation- different speeds, spin, and placement. Her backhand could draw opponents in, diffuse power, make her opponents have to hit up to deal with her slice. So with that one shot alone she could employ tons of different tactics. But where I agree with you is that Steffi was like Venus, Seles, and Pierce in that when her game was off, to self correct she would keep doing the same thing over and over- and if anything try to hit harder. As a fan that use to drive me insane. Sometimes her forehand would just be a hot mess and her philosophy was I will keep going for my shots making tons of errors until my forehand magically starts finding the court. She was so freaking awesome that she ultimately trusted that her shots would come back when she needed them most- not a real plan B by any means- but miraculously it seemed to workout for her.

Regarding Serena, I think there's a misconception that because her initial strategy has nothing at all to do with her opponents that she's not a strategic player. Serena's plan A is to execute. If Serena plays tennis on her terms she knows her game matches up with any opponent and her best will beat out her opponents best- so on the surface it can appear that Serena doesn't have to rely on tactics and variation to win matches. Unlike Steffi or her sister though, when she's off and missing her shots she truly does incorporate different strategies to cope. Through the years Serena has incorporated spin and if plan A isn't working she will pull back and start relying on her defense to win her points. She will incorporate more spin, use angles to get the advantage in rallies, and she's really good at reading plays and unpredictable with her placement (as she is w.her serves). Serena wasn't always as smart on the courts she has shown the most growth in that department in the last 5 years and that's why I ultimately selected her.
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Old Jan 30th, 2013, 10:00 PM   #104
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Re: Which players have the highest 'TENNIS' IQ?

Interesting question. All of the players on the poll have high tennis IQs, but I am surprised that Steffi and Chris have hardly any votes. They both have great court awareness and rarely hit the "wrong" shot.

Hingis = high IQ and terrible mental strength

Seles = highest mental strength (pre-stabbing), Serena is up there too.

Also, Serena's tennis IQ has significantly improved over the years and is one of the most underrated parts of her game. She is not going out there and just blasting the ball all over the place ala Sharapova.
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Old Jan 31st, 2013, 12:17 AM   #105
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Re: Which players have the highest 'TENNIS' IQ?

Navratilova all the way followed by Hingis. The head to head between Navratilova and Graf is 9 - 9 at a time when Graf's booming forehand was the sign of things to come. She had enough guile to beat players as tennis evolved. She played her first Grand Slam final against Evonne Goolagong and her last Grand Slam final with Bob Bryan!
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