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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old Feb 17th, 2015, 07:38 PM Thread Starter
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Chris vs Tracy YEC 1981 black dress

Is there any footage at all of either of the two matches that Chris and Tracy played at the year end champs in 1981? Were there no tv cameras at all, even local? It's so hard to believe that no recording exists. Also, does anyone have any pics of the black dress that Chris wore along with her sour expression? I read many times how unhappy Chris was to have to play Tracy again after the grueling RR match, but I had no idea that she obviously seemed to tank the match, didn't run for shots and pouted? It's hard to imagine Chris doing that, even if she was upset. It's also quite amusing to me and at the same time quite shocking considering the very drastic turn of events and outcome of the exact same matchup just twelve short months later between the two.

On a side note, I haven't been on this site much over the past 7 or 8 years and I'm wondering why there is only one page of current threads? Back in the day (2002-2006?) a user had the option to view several pages of threads. Am I missing something here, my eyes are getting bad and I still refuse to wear glasses! I'm Mark48, btw, not 43 anymore

I attached a pic of how there are 37 pages of of threads on general messages
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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old Feb 18th, 2015, 01:52 AM
agradecería con alegría que me comierais la ñocla.
 
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Re: Chris vs Tracy YEC 1981 black dress

You have to change the display options at the bottom of the page. Tennisforum usually shows a certain amount of threads unless you modify the settings

Yeah.
post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old Feb 18th, 2015, 04:40 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Chris vs Tracy YEC 1981 black dress

Thank you [email protected]! I finally found all the old threads!
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old Feb 18th, 2015, 12:32 PM
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Re: Chris vs Tracy YEC 1981 black dress

Hey Mark 48!

Good to see you here again.

God I wish I saw that RR match. By all accounts it was a classic.

The other match I wish I saw was Hana's defeat of Martina in the 84 Oakland final. I know you said that you were at that match.....so jealous.....
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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old Feb 18th, 2015, 01:42 PM
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Re: Chris vs Tracy YEC 1981 black dress

i remember there was a photo of evert in the black ellesse dress in the sports illustrated issue article about this event, and yes the photo showed evert with that "sour puss, whatever" expression on her face! lol!..

there is a great write up review by steve flink of that classic 3 1/2 hour battle between evert and austin on the website chrisevert.net that you should read and it's very entertaining and interesting how the match went.

unthinkable today that ANY match of the season ending championship would NOT be shown on TV. regardless, if it WAS 1981 and of course no tennis channel! they DID have ESPN because i can still remember them reporting this result and talking about it on air...

THEY DID show the rematch where austin won on TV but for some reason, i have never seen it on youtube or anywhere? and yes, you would think LOCAL tv (jersey, new york) would have had cameras court side for the 3 set thriller match?!..

odd in that after these 2 matches they would only play each other 1 more time! and exactly 1 year later and how different their fortunes of them both changed forever.
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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old Feb 18th, 2015, 07:26 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Chris vs Tracy YEC 1981 black dress

Hi BCP! How are you? Yes you have an amazing memory! I did see the hana v martina 1984 Oakland thriller. Unfortunately my memory of it is fading. I recall the oohs and aahs after several of Hana's powerful ground stroke winners and the thrilling tension of the match but not specific points anymore. I wish I had that match on tape.

http://chrisevert.net/RR81.html
Thank you laschutz for the tip on the flink write up. Unfortunately he doesn't write anything on the second match and the photo is from 1975 that accompanies it. That site could use an update/programmer!

Does anyone have a link for the SI article covering the event?
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old Feb 18th, 2015, 10:56 PM
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Re: Chris vs Tracy YEC 1981 black dress

Per Neil Amdur the color of the dress was "Midnight Blue".

ESPN aired the semis and the final, so if anyone wants to ask them......

MISS AUSTIN SUBDUES MRS. LLOYD, 6-1, 6-2

By NEIL AMDUR, Special to the New York Times

Published: December 20, 1981

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J., Dec. 19— For Tracy Austin, the challenges of tennis are welcome every day; for Chris Evert Lloyd, those challenges have become increasingly more difficult.

And so it was tonight that Miss Austin, 19 years old, overwhelmed Mrs. Lloyd, who will be 27 on Monday, 6-1, 6-2, in the semifinals of the $250,000 Toyota Series tennis championships.

Miss Austin will face Martina Navratilova on Sunday night for the $75,000 first prize and perhaps consideration for the year's No.1 spot. Miss Navratilova eliminated her doubles partner, Pam Shriver, 6-4, 7-6.

''I think if I win tomorrow, I should be No.1,'' said Miss Navratilova, the Australian Open and Avon champion, who has earned more than $800,000 this year. ''There's no doubt about it.'' Mrs. Lloyd is currently ranked No.1.

In beating Miss Shriver for the 10th time in 12 matches, Miss Navratilova served confidently, volleyed deftly and even tried topspin on her backhand passing shots. She aggravated a pulled groin muscle early in the first set, but there was nothing wrong with the way Miss Navratilova moved on the opening point of the second-set tiebreaker.

In a marvelous display of her athletic ability, Miss Navratilova made corner-to-corner gets on Miss Shriver's overheads and then won the point with a running forehand pass down the line. She swept the tiebreaker, 7-1, with a forehand cross-court service return winner.
Miss Navratilova leads in the series with Miss Austin, 16-12, but Miss Austin has a 3-2 edge this year. One more Austin victory could further complicate any definitive ranking among the two finalists and Mrs. Lloyd, the Wimbledon champion, who is No.1 on the computer.

Decisive Victory

That Miss Austin should defeat Mrs. Lloyd so decisively, in 1 hour 16 minutes, may have disappointed many in the crowd of 9,156 in Byrne Meadowlands Arena. Last Thursday night the two engaged in a classic three-set marathon, which Mrs. Lloyd won in a decisive tiebreaker.
But Mrs. Lloyd admittedly had geared herself mentally to play Miss Shriver in the semifinals and perhaps Miss Navratilova or Miss Austin in the final. The burden of committing to another potentially long, tedious struggle, with the taste of a 3-hour 18-minute victory still fresh, appeared to be more than Mrs. Lloyd was prepared to deal with. Even Mrs. Lloyd's choice of a midnight blue outfit seemed to capture her dark attitude toward the rematch.

By contrast, Miss Austin seemed to profit from the mistakes of her close, frustrating loss and grew more confident throughout tonight's encounter. She dropped the opening service game at love, trailed, 30-15, in the second game and then swept nine consecutive games, using drop shots to combat Mrs. Lloyd's drop shots, driving corner-to corner and even moving in occasionally to cut off volleys.

Mrs. Lloyd won only 10 points in the last six games of the opening set and did not hold serve until she trailed, 1-5, in the second set. The victory was Miss Austin's ninth in 16 matches against Mrs. Lloyd. She remains the only player with a career edge over Mrs. Lloyd.

'Much More Confident'

''I was much more confident on the court this time,'' Miss Austin said, citing her grooved shots and concentration on court position as factors.
Miss Austin has beaten Mrs. Lloyd as decisively in the past. In 1980, three straight-set losses to Miss Austin in the span of 10 days, when Mrs. Lloyd said her mind and heart were not in the game, prompted Mrs. Lloyd to drop off the circuit for three months and consider retirement.

Interestingly, the two players differed in their opinions over tonight's outcome. Miss Austin thought Mrs. Lloyd should have had the advantage because of her experience. ''That's going to help her in big matches,'' she said. ''The more experience you have the better off you are.''

Earlier, Mrs. Lloyd said, ''I've been through a lot more tense matches. Every tense match drains you a lot more. She's capable of playing 10 more years of tense matches. That's why I'm playing fewer tournaments.''

In many respects, about the only element that the two players share in common is their two-handed backhand. On the court, Miss Austin is a tidy housekeeper, her towel always neatly folded. Mrs. Lloyd looks like she is one step away from the beach.

Their personality differences contribute to the drama of their rivalry. When both are playing well, their baseline duels are unsurpassed. But when one or the other has the slightest hesitation, it results in one-sided scores; only four of their 16 matches have been three-setters.

''She was mentally more psyched up for the match than I was,'' Mrs. Lloyd said, speaking uncharacteristcally soft at her post-match news conference, almost as if she did not want to be heard.

Mrs. Lloyd said playing Miss Austin twice in one week required a ''different frame of mind'' than for serve-and-volley stylists like Miss Shriver and Miss Navratilova.

Controversy Over Format

Asked about the double-elimination format of the tournament, with its coin toss to decide the semifinal pairings, Mrs. Lloyd, said, ''I didn't complain before, so I'm not going to complain now.''

But the double elimination format, as with the round-robin format at the men's Masters Tournament, remain controversial. And events here this week underscored the problem.

In the case of the Masters, its round-robin format has opened the way for players to intentionally lose matches in order to try to predetermine their place in the draw or an opponent in a later round. This was the charge leveled at Ivan Lendl by Jimmy Connors last year, since Lendl, by losing to Connors in the round-robin, avoided facing Bjorn Borg in the semifinals. Connors lost to Borg, and Lendl then defeated Gene Mayer and reached the final, where he lost to Borg.

Concern over the problem caused the women to change from a roundrobin to a double-elimination format several years ago. But the double-elimination, while assuring a competitive program in group play, again called for a coin toss to determine whether Mrs. Lloyd would face Miss Austin or Miss Shriver a second time. Mrs. Lloyd had beaten both in group play during the week.

Officials on the women's tour say they welcome a better alternative to the double elimination. ''When we saw the round-robin system had flaws, we came up with another system,'' Mrs. Jones said. ''If we find this system needs refinement, we'll be glad to hear it.''

But the problem for the Volvo Masters and Toyota Series involves philosophy. By adopting the round-robin format Masters officials have the advantage of publicizing potentially attractive matches weeks in advance.
There is already the likelihood that either a John McEnroe-Connors or Connors-Lendl match will be slotted for the Thursday night date of this season's Masters, which will be held Jan. 13 through 17 at Madison Square Garden. Under an eight-player single-elimination format, no such advance promotion could be achieved.
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old Feb 18th, 2015, 11:17 PM
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Re: Chris vs Tracy YEC 1981 black dress

The Sports Illustrated write-up

She Won, But Is She No. 1? Tracy Austin was indeed driven as she won the Toyota Championships to stake her claim to the top spot in women's tennis

by Frank Deford

As the old rhyme goes, "Christmas is coming, the geese are getting fat,/Please to put a penny in the old man's hat./If you haven't got
a penny, a ha'penny will do...." It was that sort of year in the battle for supremacy in women's tennis: A ha'penny was the best
anybody could do. Consequently, when the Toyota Championships were held last week on a holiday court of green fringed with
poinsettia-red banners, three of the sport's elite were still in the hunt. For the first time, it was quite possible that No. 1 for
the year would be decided by a tournament winding up Christmas week.

The victor, it developed, was Tracy Austin, who beat Martina Navratilova in a three-set final, much as she had come back against
the same opponent to win the U.S. Open. Austin had cruised to victory in the semis over the third claimant to No. 1, Chris Evert
Lloyd, but earlier in the week, in the best match of the tournament, Austin had lost to Evert Lloyd. Austin lived to win
another day because the Toyota is one of those tournaments for which only eight players qualify, and there has to be a way to keep
everybody around for the weekend gate.

It was an appropriate note on which to end a year of confusion. The winner wasn't even sure where she had won, which was the new Brendan Byrne Meadowlands Arena, a beautiful $85 million edifice that has risen alongside a racetrack and a stadium in the New Jersey marshes across the Hudson River from Manhattan, the three athletic monuments looming up like the Pyramids. But in her bread-and-butter victory speech Austin said, "New York seems to be my city, I guess." As the catcalls rained down, one especially loud local voice bellowed. "This is Joisey, you dummy."

In any event, a few days earlier, as the tournament opened before sparse crowds, an argument could have been made for all three
pretenders to No. 1, but just as easily against: Scissors cut paper, paper wraps rock, rock breaks scissors. Coming into the Meadowlands, these were the curricula vitae:

Evert Lloyd--Best winning percentage (.929) and tournament victory record (eight for 13). Won Wimbledon. Tough draws all year and
never failed to reach semis in any event. But choosier schedule (28 fewer matches than Navratilova) and nothing special since the
Fortnight.

Navratilova--Most wins (86 of 99 matches), record prize money (more than $800,000). Quarters French, semis Wimbledon, finals U.S. Open,
won Australia, a nice progression up as the year wore on. In March won Avon Championships, culmination of the winter indoor tour. Also
to be considered in a tight race: lead player on world's best doubles team. But didn't win either Wimbledon or U.S. Open and failed to win 50% of tournaments. Also, two bad losses, to Claudia Kohde (ranked 67th at the time), and Betsy Nagelsen (33). In women's tennis, a bad loss means losing to a lesser light. Navratilova lost love and love on clay to Evert Lloyd this year, but even that double bagel isn't considered a bad loss; it's just a
day's beating from one of your own kind.

Austin--Head-to-head edge over both Evert Lloyd (1-0) and Navratilova (3-2). Won U.S. Open. Also won Canadian Open against
class field, beating Navratilova in semis and Evert Lloyd in finals. But out first third of year with sciatica, so missed French. Only quarters at Wimbledon and Australia, losing to PamShriver both places. Two bad losses, to Sandy Collins (29) and SueBarker (15).

Evert Lloyd was clearly the leader. In Australia earlier this month she beat Navratilova in a prelim tournament and then lost to her
7-5 in the third set in the finals of the Open. In New Jersey she wasn't so much a loser as the victim of a bungled draw and a greedy
double-elimination format that prevailed up to the semifinals.

Tennis promoters love round robins and double eliminations for the same reason NBA owners love playoffs: Drawing cards can't be rubbed
out early. But such arrangements are a bastard form of the sport and invariably create distortions or fraud. Besides, the very heart of tennis competition is knockout: Losers leave. The indomitable Evert Lloyd has played many roles in her career, and even though Austin won the tournament, perhaps the fate of the martyred Mrs. Lloyd will finally cause this hideous format to be deep-sixed.

Here is how they burned her at the stake. First, although she was seeded second, Chris was obliged to face the fifth seed in her
opening match. It has been worse, of course. As the top seed at both the Canadian and U.S. Opens this year, Evert Lloyd had to play
fifth-seeded Hana Mandlikova in the quarters of both tournaments.

That's a travesty. The first seed should draw No. 8 in the quarters, second seed No. 7, and so on. That's why you seed. To
seed someone first or second and then give her the draw the third or fourth seed deserves is, to rework Lincoln some, like calling a
tail a leg and thereby claiming that a dog has five legs.

Anyway, onward with Evert Lloyd. It was even more bad luck for her that Shriver, though seeded fifth, was, as everybody recognized,
the fourth-best player in the field. Andrea Jaeger, the high school drop-in, seeded fourth, is never at her best in major tournaments,
suffering a slight touch of Lendl's disease at these times. But at the Meadowlands she was also a shadow of her old young self. Andrea
is an adorable little sprite, but she is drained. In May she jetted to Tokyo for a doubles tournament, and she took a full month off
from 11th grade to play in Australia. Down Under the press excoriated her for the unbecoming petulance she is developing, and
in New Jersey all the joy was missing from her labors, even when she tromped Hana Mandlikova in an opening-round match.

It's hard to believe that, only a few months ago, Mandlikova, the French champion, was the leading candidate for Player of the Year.
Is she still bothered by her back injury but refusing to alibi? Or, as she maintains, is she whole of body again but still thinking of
her back? Whatever, on this marvelous athletic package, suddenly much postage is due.

By contrast, Shriver has never been better. Only 19, she has grown up to become a positively stunning woman--nearly everybody's
favorite, if not for her looks then for her animation. The curly-haired Shriver is rather what we can imagine Little Orphan Annie would have become if she had been given pupils and legs.

Shriver pounds the stuffing out of her serve and occasionally even negotiates a ground stroke or two. She won her first set ever from Evert Lloyd in a first-round match and carried her to a tiebreaker, too, before falling nobly, 3-6,7-6, 6-3. That cleared the path for Evert Lloyd's Thursday-night
match with Austin.

If anyone ever had any doubts about Chris's determination, she erased them when she met the press after beating Shriver. "Chris," said the gentleman from The Times, "you had nine set points in the second. Have you ever given up that many set
points before?"

If looks could kill. Chris stared at him before slowly uttering,

"You should know. I don't ever give up points."

"Squandered?" he ventured. Yes, she admitted, that might be a
record.

Austin had uncharacteristically squandered some opportunities of her own in Australia, but against Evert Lloyd on Thursday she was
never more stalwart than in the seventh game of the first set, when she held serve in a titanic struggle that lasted 26 points. At least 500 shots were struck in this game, 49 in one rally alone.The seventh game of a set is always said to be pivotal, and indeed it seemed to be so here. Austin won the first set 6-4 and took a 4-2 lead in the second after hitting her first volley of the evening.

When facing Austin, Evert Lloyd may be seeing a portrait of herself as a young woman, but theirs is never any simple looking-glass war.
Tracy hits hard, harder, hardest. As her coach, Marty Riessen, acknowledges, she never really plays against anybody. "Tracy's got
to learn that she can do better adjusting some against differentopponents," he says.

Evert Lloyd herself knows that she must vary the menu against Austin, change speeds and dink, even attempt some low-percentage
shots in the same way that a pitcher wastes a few. Let Austin dig in behind the baseline and she'll win any war of attrition. What's
so emotionally wearing about making her chase shots is that Austin is far quicker and a better retriever than she is given credit for
being.

On Thursday, though, Evert Lloyd's more intelligent presentation eventually began to tell. It wasn't easy to see--it was like watching soil erosion, for God's sake--but there it was: Chris coming to net a little more than she had in the early stages of the match, hitting a few more shots Tracy couldn't reach and, perhaps of greater importance, a few more that forced her to hit off the wrong foot. Four straight games for Evert Lloyd and, after two hours, a 4-6, 6-4 dead heat.

Then Evert Lloyd moves ahead. She has two match points at 5-3. Austin saves. Chris serves for the match at 5-4, but Tracy breaks and then holds for 6-5. The match has now passed the three-hour mark. None of their matches has lasted so long. Austin goes up love-30. Chris comes back, winning four straight points. And now the tiebreaker. Evert Lloyd wins another four straight points.

Surely it's over. No. Austin wins four points in a row. It has been
three hours, 15 minutes: 4-6, 6-4, 6-6 (4-4).

And you know what happened then? Austin double-faulted. Really. For the first time in the match. That was the whole difference. You
never know how you look till you get your picture took. Eighteen minutes into the fourth hour of the match Evert Lloyd won the
tiebreaker, 7-5.

"I thought I was going to hyperventilate just watching them," Shriver said, "God knows how they were doing it."

"It was the most grueling match I ever played," said Evert Lloyd. "I had aches in places I never had before." But with a 2-0 record she earned a pass (as did Navratilova) into the semis.

At 1-1, Austin was required to meet Mima Jausovec on Friday night beforeShriver and Jaeger, the other 1-1ers, faced off. For much of the match Tracy looked like a boxer--Duran? Frazier?--who can never be the same again after one punishing bout. Austin had a blood blister on her hand and "rug" burns on her feet. Jausovec, who had never so much as taken a set from her, won the first one 6-1. Tracy finally escaped 1-6, 6-4, 6-4, but she needed two and a half hours.

Afterward came the main event of the evening. Shriver, who beat Jaeger 6-3, 6-2, flipped a coin. Heads, Evert Lloyd would get
Shriver in the semis; tails, Chris would face Austin. Isn't that a great way to run a championship?

Tails.

One simply had to see the reactions of the two principals to know that it was quite unnecessary to go through the motions of
playing the damn thing. Austin was so thrilled about the possibility of revenge that she couldn't bear to watch the flip and sent Riessen in her place. Chris got the word back at her hotel. Dennis Ralston, her coach, came round to see her later. "What do you think?" she said glumly. He didn't even have to ask her whomshe would play.

If you needed to know any more, Evert Lloyd wore black for the match. She virtually stood still, and her mind seemed to be elsewhere as Austin blasted winners all over the place. Evert Lloyd held serve once. She lost nine straight games and 14 consecutive
points. Final score: 6-1, 6-2.

Well, her husband's in Australia and that affects her, people said. It wouldn't have made any difference if her husband had been the net-cord judge. "Every tense match you have drains you a little more," Evert Lloyd said. "I didn't have as much of me tonight as Tracy did of herself." Tracy said that was interesting, that she'd always heard that playing more gives you experience. Austin doesn't give an inch.

As Navratilova, who defeated Shriver 6-4, 7-6 in the other semi, would find out again. In the U.S. Open she ran Tracy off the court in the first set, 6-1, and then lost two tiebreakers. This time the turnaround was even more devastating. Navratilova won eight straight games to win the first set 6-2 and go up a break in the second. Then Austin assumed total command and finished her off four and two.

It was like two separate matches. In the beginning Navratilova was brilliant, staying back, trading ground strokes with the nonpareil
of ground strokes--but undercutting almost everything, never providing Austin with the pace she favors. When Martina ventured up, it was almost always to clip off easy volleys or smashes.

Typical of her superb play was the shot with which she broke to go ahead 2-0 in the second. Navratilova stepped up and sharply angled a forehand cross-court that Austin could only wave at. As Martina prepared to serve for 3-0, 1981 belonged to her.

We didn't know it then, but five points later the jig would be up. Austin broke at 15 with a backhand drive down the line, and the set
was back on serve. "I started to play my own game," Austin said later, "and stopped worrying about what she was doing. I started
hitting harder."

Still, as Martina ruefully admitted, she continued to play it safe, never pressuring Austin. Tracy moved into command and then in for the kill. By the end, roles had become so reversed that it was Austin who was boldly knocking off volleys. It was the most complete, all-court Austin we have ever seen.

Navratilova cried when it was over. So close. The last four times she and Austin have gone three sets, Tracy has won. And as Austin
improves, who will be there to challenge her in the year ahead? But that is 1982. The jury must now rule on 1981.

Tennis has no one omniscient ranking authority, but major opinions will be offered by a board of the International Tennis Federation,
by the London Daily Telegraph and by World Tennis magazine. (The latter's competitor, Tennis magazine, for some reason closed out
its rankings in early December.) The choice now is obviously down to Evert Lloyd and Austin. And by a hairsbreadth, on the basis of a
full year's consistency and a 7-5 third-set tiebreaker in the most grueling match she has ever played, this year's shiniest ha'penny
must be Mrs. Christine Marie Evert Lloyd.

Last edited by Rollo; Feb 19th, 2015 at 12:39 AM.
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old Feb 18th, 2015, 11:49 PM
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Re: Chris vs Tracy YEC 1981 black dress

I love Chris but lets be real. Had Tracy had Chris's exact year, and Chris had Tracy's exact year, including the head to had matches we know Chris would have been ITF POY and it wouldn't even been thought about. Politics of tennis at its work.

DeFord, one of the true ultimate douchebags of tennis back then to begin with, was nearly as a big a Chrisse tard as Flink (although in Flink's case he is atleast an amazing individual outside his few biases that all have(.
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old Feb 18th, 2015, 11:52 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Chris vs Tracy YEC 1981 black dress

THANK YOU Rollo! Great reads. Has anyone ever seen either of the matches covered by espn? It's soooo strange to read this and remember how weird it was to me that this amazing performance (I was thrilled Tracy won, bummed at hana was still post W blah) was Tracy's very last. I love the line about who would threaten Tracy for 1982. Deford makes it seem like it's a given that 1982 would belong to her and the old gals might get some scraps. FWD 12 months later and it's love love dub bagels Chris over a depleted Tracy.
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old Feb 20th, 2015, 12:53 PM
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Re: Chris vs Tracy YEC 1981 black dress

MARK43: i did see the 2nd match, the austin win over evert on tv... and it was just like i and others have wrote about it.. call it "midnight blue" evert's colored ellesse outfit, but it looked black on tv and she indeed acted like she was in mourning! she literally stood around, while austin blasted winner after winnner (it was like evert was the instructor feeding her balls to hit winners off of) had that sour puss "whatever" expression on her face the entire time and was "going thru the motions" when serving and returning serve (like 'whatever, let's just get this over with)... i wish i could remember but i can't in regards to remembering what austin's facial expressions were and how she was acting in response to how evert was playing and acting....

one has to think if austin had "issues" feet and hand after their previous grueling classic and had to go 3 sets with mima jausovec because of them, and yet she routs evert something had "to be up"!..

for those people who were in attendance for their 3 1/2 hour battle, i wonder then and now did/do they know just how lucky they were to be watch and witness this ALL TIME BATTLE in person that so so many, most in fact, never got the chance!..

speaking of this match not televised, i'm also AMAZED AND STUNNED that from my internet investigating i have never even SEEN OR FOUND a single PHOTO of this match? the 3 1/2 hour battle match i'm talking about.i mean no photos before the match started between the two players, during the match, post match (like shaking hands at net), etcetera... NOTHING! SURELY SURELY that has to have been photographers taking photos??!!!
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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old Feb 20th, 2015, 06:44 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Chris vs Tracy YEC 1981 black dress

Thank you laschutz! I've never found any pics from either match. I would love to see old sour puss in the midnight blue pouting and looking like a petulant child!
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old Feb 20th, 2015, 09:14 PM
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Re: Chris vs Tracy YEC 1981 black dress

MARK43: the one photo that i remember from the sports illustrated issue and article that covered this event (that has been posted above)... i remember the photo being about oh, i don't know maybe 5 to 6 inches in size being a mid waist shot of evert on court with her eyes closed, head slightly cocked to the side and yes,lips together with a expression of "whatever"holding her racket upright vertically in the middle of her body ... i have a great memory and i remember this photo even all these years later! laugh! hope i've described well enough for you?!
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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old Feb 22nd, 2015, 07:22 AM
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Re: Chris vs Tracy YEC 1981 black dress

Quote:
Originally Posted by laschutz View Post
MARK43: i did see the 2nd match, the austin win over evert on tv... and it was just like i and others have wrote about it.. call it "midnight blue" evert's colored ellesse outfit, but it looked black on tv and she indeed acted like she was in mourning! she literally stood around, while austin blasted winner after winnner (it was like evert was the instructor feeding her balls to hit winners off of) had that sour puss "whatever" expression on her face the entire time and was "going thru the motions" when serving and returning serve (like 'whatever, let's just get this over with)... i wish i could remember but i can't in regards to remembering what austin's facial expressions were and how she was acting in response to how evert was playing and acting....

one has to think if austin had "issues" feet and hand after their previous grueling classic and had to go 3 sets with mima jausovec because of them, and yet she routs evert something had "to be up"!..

for those people who were in attendance for their 3 1/2 hour battle, i wonder then and now did/do they know just how lucky they were to be watch and witness this ALL TIME BATTLE in person that so so many, most in fact, never got the chance!..

speaking of this match not televised, i'm also AMAZED AND STUNNED that from my internet investigating i have never even SEEN OR FOUND a single PHOTO of this match? the 3 1/2 hour battle match i'm talking about.i mean no photos before the match started between the two players, during the match, post match (like shaking hands at net), etcetera... NOTHING! SURELY SURELY that has to have been photographers taking photos??!!!
It is strange, and disappointing that no TV footage of RR play was recorded. And I have never seen clips of the final either.
Then again, this is the WTA we are talking about.

Despite the fact the Toyota Series Championships was the season ending playoff/championships for all the women's tournaments, sans Avon circuit, you would think it would be a big deal. But the WTA made their pact with Virginia Slims (by 1981, Avon) as their defacto "Tour Championships." To this day, I feel like there is a misrepresentation of the women's tour championships from 1977-1982. Especially considering that in those years, the top women didn't fully commit to the indoor circuit. On top of that, the VS/Avon circuit was only 3 months long, versus the 6-9 month Colgate/Toyota series, which also encompassed the 4 majors. But, that is a topic for another thread, for sure!

Some other factors about the 1981 Toyota Series Championships. It was played for the first time in the Meadowlands Arena, December 15-20. The Australian Open (by this point the last of the 4 majors) ended on December 6. So the top 8 women trudged all the way from Australia, after playing in summer outdoors on grass, for the final event of the year, a round robin competition indoors during a cold week one week before Christmas. There weren't many women's events on TV, and cable covered a number of women's tournaments. Sadly, the WTA couldn't muster a deal with anyone for TV coverage. With those factors, it is surprising that there were some amazing close matches. Making it more intriguing was that the 4 majors were equally divided in 1981, and three players entered the tournament claiming a win would earn them the no. 1 ranking.

Well, the official WTA computer ranking was never in doubt, as Chris had sewn it prior to the start. Back then, the computer wasn't as powerful as it is today, and magazine rankings and other pundits held some sway as to who was no. 1.

I will fully admit I am an Evert fan, so biased towards Chris.

Chris and Tracy were placed int he same round robin group. Martina edged Chris in the Toyota Series point standings by virtue of her Australian Open win. Evert and Austin were #2 and #3 on the Toyota point standings, and were thus paired together. However, Evert and Austin were #1 and #2 respectively on the computer rankings. Two years prior, the Toyota (known as Colgate) Series Championships, actually played in January 1980 had a similar scenario. Evert (1st) and Austin (3rd) in point standings were paired in the same RR group. Austin whipped Evert in the RR portion, and again in the semis. The double elimination format allowed for the possibility of 3 players from one of the 4 player groups to advance tot he semis, thus necessitating a coin toss to determine SF pairings, and the possibility for a repeat encounter. In 1980, Chris was in her doldrum stage, and had very little interest playing matches on an indoor court.

I believe that when Chris came to the Meadowlands in 1981, she didn't have the same motivation to win the tournament. I believe she was hungry to win the Australian Open that year, and was probably bummed about her close loss to Martina (coming on the heels of a tough 3 set loss to her at the US Open). Seeing that she was paired with Tracy in the RR would not have been a pleasant thought. Tracy always had the edge over Chris indoors. Austin beat Evert the first time they ever played indoors, had never loss to Chris indoors prior to the Meadowlands event, and the indoor surface suited Tracy's flat strokes. Nevertheless, Evert's stirring three set, third set tiebreak victory over Austin in the RR was one for the ages. It was one of those matches that Chris really had to "gut out" to win. Although a RR match, I think it was an important psychological win. Sure, Chris would have preferred a SF win over Tracy versus a RR win. But, I do not believe that Evert would have beaten Tracy in the semis if she lost to her in the RR. Had Chris lost the RR match to Tracy, and then had to play Jausovec for the right to get to the semis and then wait for a coin toss to find out who she played in the semis, a second encounter with Austin would not be something she would relish. Considering the same thing occurred two years earlier. Evert would have the revenge factor going for her. And I think the semi would have been closer than the actual result. Therefore, the RR match win by Evert enabled Chris to register an H2H win over Tracy for the year, and reach the semis.

I obviously din't see the match, but have read the reports of their semifinal encounter. Chris' apparent listlessness was, IMHO, a lack of motivation and desire, with a tinge of "I'm really pissed at having to play this pipsqueak AGAIN on an indoor court just days after I beat her. I'm already #1 for the year, I just want to go home to Florida for Christmas." Many of the Austin-Evert matches were one-way traffic matches. One player got on top early and didn't relinquish control. Austin had nothing to lose. She was ranked lower than Chris, had barely made it to the semis, and could go for broke. Which is what she did. And the indoor surface rewarded that type of play.

There were times in Chris' career where she went out on court with a defeatist attitude, and essentially lost the match in the locker room prior to the start. I believe the 1981 semi of the Toyota Championships was one of those matches. She didn't "need" to win that match or that tournament. And she didn't win it!

With all of that, the WTA wised up for the following year. The Toyota Series Championships were still contested just 2 weeks after the Australian Open, indoors at the Meadowlands Arena. But, they changed the format from an 8 player, double elimination to a 12 player, single elimination event. The top 4 seeds had byes. And wouldn't you know who should meet in the semis of the 1982 event? Chris and Tracy. And the third time is the charm, they say. For the third time that Evert and Austin met in the semis of the Colgate/Toyota Series Championships, Chris emerged the victor. A stunning 6-0,6-0 win. Which also turned out to be the final match the two would ever play!
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old Feb 23rd, 2015, 06:10 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Chris vs Tracy YEC 1981 black dress

I've always wondered why Bjorn Borg was there as well? How often did he attend women's events (or any events) in that fall after leaving the game so abruptly? I thought he wanted nothing to do with tennis.
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