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This thread is for posters to list, and discuss any of the classic matches from the 80's..

Here is a list of what I consider to be the Top matches from the 80's for excitement, standard of play, and good old DRAMA!!!!

<br />1) 1986 USO SF Navratilova def Graf 6-1 6-7 7-6

This was so exciting because it really was a case of the ageing champ, still near her best, against the up and coming youngster...although Graf had been on tour for a good 3 or 4 years by this stage... Martina was often times affected by nerves in her career, but not in this match... She had already lost 2 heartbreakers at the USO in 3rd set tiebreaks in the finals in 81 and 85 to Mandlikova and Austin, another one wold have been awful for her... She stood strong, saved 3 or 4 match points with amazing serving, and took a close one 7-6!!!

2) 1985 USO Final - Hana Mandlikova Def Navratilova 7-6 1-6 7-6

Typical Hana match. She races to a 5-0 lead with impeccable volleying, goes walkabout, Martina gets back to 5-5, has opportunites to go ahead a break and serve for it, Hana gets her head back, takes out the first set, then goes walkabout again, gets hammered in the 2nd set, then comes back to earth again, and thrills spectators as both players are fighting for net position...hardly anyone comes to net these days, so u can imagine how refreshing it is to watch a battle of players BOTH trying to get to net first!!! a great win in an entertaining match for Hana.

3) 1985 French Final - Evert def navratilova 6-3 6-7 7-5

Talk about a tense match with long, searching rallies. Martina made the terrible mistake of trying to stay back and baseline rally with Chris, and not going to her strength - volleying. As it was, she still nearly pulled out the victory..it looked in this match as if Chris didnt beleive she could win..she served for it in the 2nd set, Martina broke her, and when she took the set ina tibreaker most people thought her chance may have passed by... she was tough though, and at 5-5 in the 3rd, it really looked as if Martina would win, with a 40-0 lead on Chris's serve... But Chris managed to pull that game out, then win the match with an amazing pressure passing shot down the line. Great win for Chris to at least compete with Martina in their rivalry.

4) 1987 French Open final - graf def Navratilova 6-4 4-6 8-6

If Steffi was biting at Martina's heels at the 8 months previously at the USO, she really came of age in this match...with a bit of help from Martina's nerves...Martina started out nervously, and lost the first set 6-4, she took control of the match with some brilliant netplay on the clay to take the 2nd 6-4...Martina looked very solid in the 3rd, and managed to go up a break...she served for it at 5-4, but double faulted twice and gave Graf the game..Graf kept the momentum going, and the changing of the guard in womens tennis had begun and Martina had lost her 3rd FO Final in a row...

Sorry for such a long post, I just started raving on!!!
 

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A bump up so this thread gets attention....

Great picks all. Hana was my 80's fav.

Others I remember.

Goolagong d. Austin, 1980 semi Wimbledon, <br /> 6-3 0-6 6-4. Nice contrast in styles, great victory for Evonne, and the closest Tracy came to a Wimbledon singles plate.

Navratilova d. Evert, 1981 Us Open, 7-5 4-6 6-4.<br />I've never seen a crowd so into a match from start to finish. Long baseline rallies mixed in with net charging from Martina and Chris sneaking in on Martina's backhand. Passions ran so high two fans got into a fight and were ejected by police in third set. As Evert was the #1 at the time, the crowd was really behind Martina.

THEN the final. Austin d. Navratilova 1-6 7-6 7-6. Martina coming so close to getting the monkey off her back. The crowd behind her AGAIN despite Marti being "outed" by the newspapers that year(1981 was the year the lesbian issue was made public with King and Navratilova). Navratilova saving match point when her forehand hit the tape and went over. The missed forehand volleys. The cheers for Martina at the end followed by an ocean of tears shed by the Czech. This was more emotional than Jana's 93 Wimbledon breakdown.

Ah, the 3 way catfight for #1 in 1981 continued in Australia and the WTA finals, where they had more great matches.

Navratilova beat Mandlikova at Amelia Island in 1984. I'm sure no one recalls the match now because it wasn't a major, but it was like watching a living piece of art, two masters of attack on clay.

1982-Hanika d. Navratilova 1-6 6-3 6-4 at Madison Square Garden. Martina didn't choke, Sylvia just blew her off the court the last few games for an amazing upset.

I never saw the Sukova upset of navratilova in the 1984 Aussie, though I've heard it was fantastic. Oh the drama, as a grand slam slipped away from Martina!

Same for Shriver and Graf in the 85 US Open. 3 tiebreaks on the grandstand in the worst heat.

Best of all was the Graf-Marti US Open match in 1986!
 

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All the matches listed are classics. The '85 Mandlikova US Open victory was a particular favorite. Here are some more

1. Goolagong defeats Evert 6-1,7-6. Wimbledon 1980.<br /> Evonne finally won a big one after 9 years of constantly being the runner up to Evert. the score doesn't sound like much and Evert always says she blew the match, but if you read the press clippings even Evert admitted "no one could have beaten Evonne in the first set".

2. Mandlikova defeats Navratilova, 3 sets. Oakland 1984.

I have to list this one because I saw it in person and it was just as much a thriller as the next years US Open. Hana played brilliantly, as did Martina. The match was a seesaw power/volleying afair of the first order. Martina would not lose another match until 11 months later in OZ.

3. Navratilova defeats Evert, 3 sets. Wimbledon's '87-88.

I don't remember the scores but these were wonderfully dramatic and emotional 3 set classics from the queens of tennis in their twilight years. I think the '88 match ended on a disputed line call on match point. Chrissie seemed pissed and didn't want to shake hands!
 
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i hope this is a very successfull thread, considering these matches are WAY WAY before my time, and for this reason have like the classic nostalgic thing going on
 

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Good memory MaryLinda. I can recall that Evert-Navratilova match like it was yesterday! Evert and the crowd were both ready to hang the linesman who made the call against her! Had it gone the other way, the score would have been deuce.

Lucky you to see Hana -Martina live! <img src="smile.gif" border="0">
 

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Ahem! ASV beats Graf 7-6 3-6 7-5 ....you know where and when lol <img src="smile.gif" border="0"> <img src="rolleyes.gif" border="0">

[ November 24, 2001: Message edited by: TOT ]</p>
 

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I have to add the 1986 Virginia Slims Ch'ships semifinal between Martina and Pam which Martina won 6-2 4-6 6-4. That's about the closest Pam ever got to beating Martina again after 1982. I watch that match on tape and just feel so bad for Pam. It would have been nice if she could have beaten Martina just one more time. It was a fabulous match. Fantastic net play and shot-making. Pam was playing out of her mind.

Martina's 1988 U.S. Open loss to Zina was another classic. Martina comes back from 4-6 0-5 down and ends up losing 6-4 6-7 7-5. Good stuff from Z!

Martina's 1981 Australian Open win over Evert is another highly-rated match though I haven't seen it. Martina was up 5-0 in the final set, before Evert came back to 5-5. Martina held on to win.

The 1984 U.S. Open final also sticks out. Evert playing her absolute best, Martina just average. Yet Martina still won. The crowds were behind Evert 100%, it was just insane. She received standing ovations for Martina's double-faults. Martina cried after this match b/c of the crowd's blatant favoritism.

Of course, the 1986 semifinal win over Graf will always be my favorite. I didn't think Martina played particularly well and had the match been completed on the first day, I suspect Martina would have romped through in straights. But it was great to see Martina maintain her calm and not choke. She worked so hard for this win, after losing 2 final set tie-breaks at the Open, it was third-time lucky for her. And that handshake at the end was "PRICELESS"!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Oh Zummi, Im glad you brought up the handshake, it was HILARIOUS!!!!!

She shakes Martina's hand so quickly, Martina goes to pat Steffi on the shoulder, but got nothing but air, becuase Graf charged off the court....and Martina kind of shrugged her shoulders as if to say "Oh well"!!

<br />Zummi - I thought of including the 84 Us Final, but decided against it, because to me, it wasnt a thriller.

You are right, Martina played average, and Chris played awesome, but to me, the result was never in doubt, so it wasnt a classic IMO...
 
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