Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open - TennisForum.com
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old Oct 7th, 2015, 11:33 AM Thread Starter
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Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open

Not really familiar with either of these players and their careers, just wanted to know if anyone can explain why this was such a big upset.

I was alerted to this match from this article from fivethirtyeight posted on TF here who also did a brilliant Elo analysis of Serena Williams on the eve of the US Open infamously titled difference between Greatest and Great. LOL! (she only comes up as Great)

Anyway, please if anyone can tell me about that match and its significance since it's before my time.

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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old Oct 7th, 2015, 01:47 PM
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Re: Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open

The world ranking of these players in december 1979 was 17 for Mandlikova, and 55 for Jordan. Mandlikova was n°2 seed at the AO, B. Jordan n°5 seed - which shows how weak the field was in those times.

I guess many people were seeing how much promising Mandlikova was, as she was going to become a top player soon, which never was the case of Barbara, whose highest ranking in her career was 37 in 1980 after her win at the AO. In 1980 Mandlikova was already number 4.

But Mandlikova on a bad day could lose to anyone, sadly. In that match vs Jordan (that i've never seen), she made a lot of foot faults I have read. I guess Hana was still a bit too young.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old Oct 7th, 2015, 05:54 PM
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Re: Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open

God - I forgot about Babs Jordan. I always loved her surly, gnarly sister Kathy. She was such a great villian to root against and you never knew if she would come up with the goods for a nice upset.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old Oct 8th, 2015, 01:06 AM
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Re: Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open

Mandlikova as a teen was considered a good prospect to be a perennial Top Tenner and winner of multiple Slams. And it did seem like that her peer group (Austin, Shriver, Mandlikova) was going to come on strong, early. Shriver had reached a Slam final in 1978; Austin had just won a Slam and was putting a severe crimp in Evert's style (and Evert herself had yet to win the AO). Also worth mentioning is that Navratilova had only won two singles Slams by that time and might possibly remain an underachiever. So there was a feeling that the 1980s might belong to the New Kids.

Barbara Jordan had played college tennis, and like so many others who took that path, she was a competent player, but probably was not going to be a world beater. IIRC, the 1979 AO is Barbara Jordan's only singles title, which pretty much sums it up. She didn't make it past the third round at any other Slam. That's some difference.
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old Oct 8th, 2015, 01:49 AM
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Re: Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open

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Barbara Jordan had played college tennis, and like so many others who took that path, she was a competent player, but probably was not going to be a world beater. IIRC, the 1979 AO is Barbara Jordan's only singles title, which pretty much sums it up. She didn't make it past the third round at any other Slam. That's some difference.
All true, but at family reunions she can always pose the question, "Now remind me which one of us has a Grand slam in singles?

The ironies and curveballs life throws up are pretty amazing-I find the Jordan situation one of the rich ironic tidbits of tennis.

P.S. Don't know a thing about the match besides something Hugues reminded me of: there was one match where Hana got SO fed up with foot faults she started to put her foot on the line on purpose.
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old Oct 9th, 2015, 12:53 AM
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Re: Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open

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All true, but at family reunions she can always pose the question, "Now remind me which one of us has a Grand slam in singles?

The ironies and curveballs life throws up are pretty amazing-I find the Jordan situation one of the rich ironic tidbits of tennis.
It is hilarious how Katty, er, Kathy was the more feisty competitor and the better player with overall more accomplishments, and certainly more famous -- and yet sis Barbara is the one with an AO singles trophy in the display case. Although I can hear Kathy saying: "Sure, you played Sharon Walsh in your final; I played Martina Navratilova!"

It would be like if there were a fourth Maleeva sister who went to an American college on a tennis scholarship and was kinda considered the least promising tennis player of the siblings, and then from out of nowhere she wins the AO. Maybe beating like a young Sabatini in the process. I don't know if that analogy makes any more sense to Sam L.

Quote:
P.S. Don't know a thing about the match besides something Hugues reminded me of: there was one match where Hana got SO fed up with foot faults she started to put her foot on the line on purpose.
Does not bode well, does it?
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old Oct 9th, 2015, 11:23 AM
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Re: Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open

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Originally Posted by Sam L View Post
Not really familiar with either of these players and their careers, just wanted to know if anyone can explain why this was such a big upset.

I was alerted to this match from this article from fivethirtyeight posted on TF here who also did a brilliant Elo analysis of Serena Williams on the eve of the US Open infamously titled difference between Greatest and Great. LOL! (she only comes up as Great)

Anyway, please if anyone can tell me about that match and its significance since it's before my time.
Hana had won three Australian tournaments that Summer leading into the Australian. Number 1 seed Virgina Ruzici lost in the first round to Western Australian Mary Sawyer after winning the first 8 games, so the focus went onto Hana as the next favourite.


Quote:
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P.S. Don't know a thing about the match besides something Hugues reminded me of: there was one match where Hana got SO fed up with foot faults she started to put her foot on the line on purpose.
It was this very match that Hana purposely put her fault on the line and served

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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old Oct 9th, 2015, 02:52 PM
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Re: Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open

Ha! I am learning things about this match that I did not know. I have to giggle at the Sports Illustrated article after the 1980 US Open when Hana was portrayed as a "bright, sunny, happy" girl. Yet, here we see the detrimental temperament already starting to show in 1979.

I think the point about Jordan having played college tennis is a good one. If nothing else, that teaches you how to play with pressure. You have teammates that are depending upon you, and you also have to face sometimes hostile crowds at certain schools that have passionate tennis fan bases. I'll never forget Mikael Pernfors, who played at UGA, being asked at the 1986 French Open what it was like to play Leconte in Paris, on Center Court, in the SF of the French Open. His response was that it wasn't as tough as playing Clemson at Clemson!

I wish that Hana would have won, obviously. Given the general malaise surrounding the Australian title at the time, I wonder if she felt that the occasion brought on pressure that might not have existed when she was winning in Sydney? To make the trip down there, there must have been some feeling of worthiness to win the most prestigious Australian title.

It all came about for Hana soon enough. I would not want to take away anything from Barbara, who was a deserving champion I am sure.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old Oct 9th, 2015, 06:00 PM
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Re: Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open

These were Hana's lead-ups to the AO.

At Melbourne, Mandlikova was unseeded and beat #8 Kloss, #3 Fromholtz and #4 Turnbull to win the title. King and Goolagong were both in the field.

At Sydney, she was #8 and was upset by a young Ros Fairbank in the QFs. Fairbank was a qualifier but would soon be a top 20-30 player.

She won at Adelaide beating Barker #1, and Ruzici #2 (retired) in the last 2 rounds.

At the NSW, she beat Barker, Fairbank and Bunge to win the title.

Based on form, losing 62 62 to Barbara Jordan in the AO was a shocker.

However, if you look at history, often the newcomer who has made a big splash struggles the first time expectations for success are put upon her.

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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old Oct 9th, 2015, 11:55 PM
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Re: Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open

Evonne went to Oz in the fall of 1979???
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old Oct 10th, 2015, 03:00 PM
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Re: Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open

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Originally Posted by preacherfan View Post
These were Hana's lead-ups to the AO.

At Melbourne, Mandlikova was unseeded and beat #8 Kloss, #3 Fromholtz and #4 Turnbull to win the title. King and Goolagong were both in the field.

At Sydney, she was #8 and was upset by a young Ros Fairbank in the QFs. Fairbank was a qualifier but would soon be a top 20-30 player.

She won at Adelaide beating Barker #1, and Ruzici #2 (retired) in the last 2 rounds.

At the NSW, she beat Barker, Fairbank and Bunge to win the title.

Based on form, losing 62 62 to Barbara Jordan in the AO was a shocker.

However, if you look at history, often the newcomer who has made a big splash struggles the first time expectations for success are put upon her.

I still love Ros Fairbank to this day. Her game was so subtle, but she got her point across. Such a smart player too!

"I cannot survive in this world with my honesty." Hana Mandlikova
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old Oct 10th, 2015, 07:59 PM
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Re: Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open

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Evonne went to Oz in the fall of 1979???
I'm sure if there was some cash/money involved (cough guarantees cough) Evonne was there. I don't think that's a big shocker though after Turnbull's comments back in the day and the fact that Evonne played the Aussie summer season one year when she was several months preggers. I remember she was also playing some Australian indoor events (or at least entered them) as late as 1985 that I'm sure had some exchange of cash behind it.

Mind you, I don't think it's a bad thing and I'm sure that MANY if not all top WTA players took guarantees. Might explain Tracy Austin's appearance at some European clay court events, but then her not showing up at Roland Garros. And just so I don't appear biased, I'm almost certain Chrissie did as well. (I just assume any time a tour event was held in Japan back in the day and a top player was there, it was about the guarantee.)
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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old Oct 11th, 2015, 06:38 PM
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Re: Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open

Oh no, I just thought she might have overplayed and was injured that fall after beating Tracy twice, winning two tourneys in a row. I thought she was off the tour until the year end (held in 1980!?!?) champs in DC. I'm just going by memory.
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old Oct 12th, 2015, 03:26 AM
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Re: Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open

I browsed the 1979 thread and Miss Evonne did indeed play the first round at the 100k tourney and then withdrew with the flu. She was also scheduled to play the following event but withdrew, still flu ridden.

What events did she play in 1985? I though her last tour singles matches were in 1983 and from that point on she played a few hit-N-giggle doubles and basically just Go Go Goolagong'd for Sears Roebuck?
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old Oct 12th, 2015, 11:47 AM
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Re: Jordan d. Mandlikova 1979 Australian Open

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Originally Posted by Mark43 View Post
I browsed the 1979 thread and Miss Evonne did indeed play the first round at the 100k tourney and then withdrew with the flu. She was also scheduled to play the following event but withdrew, still flu ridden.

What events did she play in 1985? I though her last tour singles matches were in 1983 and from that point on she played a few hit-N-giggle doubles and basically just Go Go Goolagong'd for Sears Roebuck?
According to Shriver's book she was scheduled to enter the singles at both the Australian spring indoor events, but withdrew at the last minute. I know she also played the dubs at Hilton Head that year, as well.
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