Re: 2012 pronostics

Yeah, I remember Corretja beating Moya in the Masters cup final. Rios N°1, Agassi beating Medvedev for his Career grand slam, Ivanisevic finally winning Wimbledon (poor Rafter that day)...

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Re: 2012 pronostics

Yeah Marcelo Rios of course! smile

It was not the 90-es but I must mention that GREAT match in the AO semi between Federer and future champion Marat Safin.What a magnificent win that was for the Russian.That was the year when Novak just showed on the ATP like a sixteen year old and lost to Safin in the first round of the same tourney.

Last edited by Dragan (Apr. 10, 2012 3:40pm)

Re: 2012 pronostics

The two guys I felt the most for in a GS final that eventually lost were Rafter & Roddick at Wimbledon....Rafter could have and probably should have beaten Ivanisevic, fairytale story for Goran though but I wanted Pat to win it and although I was very happy to see Fed win against Roddick at Wimby in that epic five setter I did feel sorry for Andy I must admit.

Right I'm off to do some work....have fun guys. smile

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Re: 2012 pronostics

You're right Dragan, that was a great match.

And I also felt sorry for Pat though Ivanisevic also deserved it...

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Re: 2012 pronostics

From a clay perspective, in honor of the eminent arrival of Monte Carlo,  let's recall some real clay courters.

The earliest for me were Manolo Santana and Nicola Pietrangeli.  And the Aussies: Laver, Rosewall, Emmerson, Stolle, Newcombe, Roche.  What a crew that was, even on clay (admittedly not their favorite surface)!   

Borg, Vilas, Wilander, Lendl, Courier, Bruguera, Muster, Moya, Kuerten, Ferrero, Coria.  Kings of clay in their day.  Truly dominant players on the dirt, each clearly the best clay court player in the world for awhile. 

Of course, Borg was more.  He and Nadal stand alone as clay court champions, far above the rest.
 
And Borg stands alone with Federer and Sampras on grass -- probably with Sampras 3rd, really -- which is fairly impressive when you think about it.

Last edited by Don (Apr. 10, 2012 4:36pm)

Re: 2012 pronostics

And let's not forget Corretja, Costa, Gaudio... What an epic battle Gaudio won against Coria back in 2004 in the RG final. He saved 3 match points and went on to win the title.

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Re: 2012 pronostics

I've posted about the match in the past.  It was the saddest thing I've ever seen.  It was not Gaudio being heroic from my perspective.  Coria was by far the best clay court player in the world and he owned Gaudio.  Everybody expected Coria to win RG and he was well on his way, going through Gaudio like a hot knife through butter as usual, but he got excited, quit breathing, got leg cramps, and could not run.  He was in excruciating pain and tried to play through it.  Saddest match I've ever seen.  Coria was never a popular player, but he was always a favorite of mine.  He had numerous injuries and retired young, never achieving the greatness that a little good health would have guaranteed.

Corretja was never the best clay courter because of Moya, who usually beat him, right?  Maybe for awhile when Carlos was injured.  And, yes, Alex had a couple of epic wins over Carlos, but nobody would have ever called him the favorite against Moya, would they?

Certainly Costa, though he won RG, was never better than the 3rd best clay courter in Spain.  Gaudio was only briefly the best in Argentina.  To me, though they're all undeniably excellent clay court players, and especially so with Corretja, they're not guys who were ever the dominant clay court player.

Last edited by Don (Apr. 10, 2012 5:10pm)

Re: 2012 pronostics

Yep, sad match for him. He also had once Nadal in his sight in the 5th set in the Rome final, 2005, two breaks up. Nadal won.

2006: Same story against Roger, saving 2 MP in that one. Nadal won.

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Re: 2012 pronostics

I was quite the Coria fan back in the day.  Quite a few people including me thought that if he added a little muscle and amped up the serve, he could become #1 in the world.  He tried to do just that, but he was maybe a little frail, and the weight work may actually have contributed to his injuries and helped end his career instead.

Last edited by Don (Apr. 10, 2012 5:24pm)

Re: 2012 pronostics

Maybe your right. Sadly we will never know... I loved Kuerten back then. His style, his game. So much kick in his serve, a beautiful backhand.

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Re: 2012 pronostics

Guga was great.  How could anybody not love Guga?  What a great guy!  He had lots of injury problems, too.  It's almost like his body was as loose as he was, and that was too lose to stay well.

You can make the case, I think, that briefly Marat Safin and Yevgeny Kafelnikov were the dominant clay court player in the world.  Marat certainly had the game and the physique.  But he was a bit too much like Goran on steroids in terms of on court attitude.  Clearly suffering.  Very Russian, that part, no doubt, though he did live and train in Spain for years.  Somehow Kafelnikov, who played a preposterous number of tourneys every year and was prone to 1st round losses as a result, never quite captured the public imagination.  Marat did, but not so much in a good way maybe.  And, of course, Agassi and Chang.  There was a short period of time (more like 2 or 3 in Andre's case) when he was the best on clay beyond doubt.

Last edited by Don (Apr. 10, 2012 5:30pm)

Re: 2012 pronostics

Well, none of them really dominated the others on clay though it's true they were good clay court players.
I know I'm swiss and so on but I think that Federer is far better on clay than Safin, Agassi were. I think he's better on clay than most of the spanish/argeninian guys who won (or final) RG (Crretja, Moya, Ferrero, Costa, Gaudio, Coria)..

I know that not everybody will agree with but still.

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Re: 2012 pronostics

Oh, certainly Roger is a better clay court player than most of the people of whom we've been speaking.  He has simply had the misfortune to play at the same time as one of the two greatest clay court players in history.  Without Borg, Vilas would have been arguably the greatest clay court champion before Nadal.  Without Nadal, maybe Federer would be in that conversation as well, though there are many, many more serious contenders these days. 

But without doubt, of that group, the only ones who arguably were better than Roger on clay, even for a year, are Safin and Coria.  I would argue that at his best when he was #1 in the world, Safin was briefly a very great clay court player.  Then the wheels came off.  Coria was on his way to becoming an all time great when injury intervened.  Roger wins easily because of how long he's been a great clay court player.  And the truth is that trying to find ways to beat Rafa has made Roger a much better clay court player than he was when he was King of the World.

Moya and Roger are maybe not so unequal in standing above the rest of the guys on that list, as clay court champions only.  Certainly you can't compare Moya to Roger on any other surface.  But Moya really was the guy for awhile on clay.  Edge to Roger, maybe.

Here are guys I would rank ahead of Roger as clay court champions, but of course behind Borg and Nadal:
Vilas, Wilander, Lendl, Courier, Bruguera, Kuerten.  Probably Muster as well.  He won a lot of tourneys on clay.

Last edited by Don (Apr. 10, 2012 5:50pm)

Re: 2012 pronostics

Yeah Muster sure was an extraordinary clay court player. Unfortunately, I'm a bit too young to really know about Vilas, Wilander, Lendl, Courier, Bruguera, Muster...

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Re: 2012 pronostics

Well, one of these days after we who do remember them are ourselves memories, you'll be talking about back in the day when Roger Federer ruled the world and your first-hand knowledge of what -- for awhile at least -- is the greatest rivalry in the history of the sport.  I'd say that should make up for it a bit.

Last edited by Don (Apr. 10, 2012 6:02pm)

Re: 2012 pronostics

Yeah definitely wink

I mean, has it ever happened to have two players at the same time which have at least 10 GS? I don't think so...

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Re: 2012 pronostics

Wow, I thought I posted something but apparently not. Iwas saying that Emerson and Rod Laver played at the same time ad both had more than 10 majors. But we know Laver did not play on the ATP for a long time during that stretch.

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Re: 2012 pronostics

That was not much of a rivalry.  Emmerson did well in Laver's absence, but Laver completely dominated him and most of the rest of the world for awhile. 

What takes some of the shine off that is that Laver won the grand slam and turned pro...and could not win a match.  He couldn't beat Buchholz, much less Gonzalez and Segura!  It was sad, really.  Then 5 years later when those guys are all old men, they let Laver back in, tennis goes pro and Laver wins another grand slam.  Impressive, in a way. 

No way the tennis establishment was going to let Pancho Gonzalez, who had personally created professional tennis as an act of defiance of their authority, or any of his cohorts, benefit from their act of rebellion, even if Gonzalez did turn out to be a visionary on the issue of players being paid.  Which is to say, history has spoken.  Pancho Gonzalez was right.  The tennis establishment was wrong.

To me the greatest rivalry before Roger/Rafa was probably Borg/McEnroe, though one could argue for Sampras/Agassi or Laver/Rosewall, I guess.  Becker/Edberg wasn't a bad one either, especially at Wimbledon, maybe my favorite one of this group after Borg/McEnroe.

Last edited by Don (Apr. 10, 2012 7:00pm)

Re: 2012 pronostics

Yeah Borg-McEnroe definitely was one of the greatest rivalries. I loved the Agassi-Sampras too.
There is so much intensity in those duels, that's what make those matches special. That's why Federer-Nadal matches bring the best of tennis.

This is something that has always struck me. When nadal plays Federer in big matches, it seems that he plays his best ever tennis. Unfortunatey for Federer, this doesn't marry well with his game though he also plays incredible. Damn I just got so excited by the idea of a Federer-Nadal GS final this year. But it's gonna be a tough one to get Djokovic out of the tournament first...

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Re: 2012 pronostics

Yep Borg & McEnroe was a fantastic rivalry of contrasting players and temperaments, the ice cool swede versus the brash and loud american...always enjoyed watching those clashes.

I'd prefer to see a Roger v Novak GS Final Adunar rather than a Rafa v Fed one from now on...for obvious reasons. wink

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Re: 2012 pronostics

;-)

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Re: 2012 pronostics

Adunar wrote:

Hi everybody,

The first quarter of the 2012 season is over and I think that it might be time to make some pronostics for the end of the year. Here are some questions:

Who do you think will be in the top 10 at the end of the year?
Who do you think will play the ATP World Tour Finals?
Who do you think will make the biggest jump in the rankings this year?
Do you think someone can win 4 or 5 Masters 1000's this season?
Can Novak win a Calendar grand slam?
Who do you think will win the last 3 majors?
Who will win the most tournaments?
Who's going to clinch the year-end n°1 ranking?
Can Federer beat Sampras' record of 286 weeks at N°1?
Will Nadal be able to beat Djokovic at least once this year?
Can someone out of the top 4 win a GS? A Masters 1000?

Here are a lot of questions to talk about. But I think it is definitely time to discuss about that as the Clay court season begins tomorrow.

Don't be shy, most of us will be wrong! But if your right, we'll remember ;-)

Top 10:

1. Novak Djokovic
2. Rafael Nadal
3. Andy Murray
4. Roger Federer
5. David Ferrer
6. Tomas Berdych
7. Juan Martin del Potro
8. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
9. Gael Monfils
10. Gilles Simon

Biggest jump in the rankings:

Positive - Grigor Dimitrov. I've been waiting for him to bust out for sometime now. I still believe he will do it, and I think the grass court season will jumpstart his season.

Negative - Jurgen Melzer - His downward spiral has already begun, but I can see him dropping into the 50's or beyond.

No, I do not think someone will win 4 or 5 Master's 1000 events.

No, Novak will not win the Calendar 'Slam.

Nobody will win at least 3 majors.

Novak will win the most tournaments.

Federer will not regain the #1 ranking and will not break Pete's record.

Yes, Nadal will beat Djokovic again this year.

Yes, someone outside of the top 4 can win a 'Slam and most certainly a Masters 1000 event. The most likely candidates to me are del Po, Tsonga, Berdych, Ferrer and Monfils/Tipsarevic (for a Masters title, not a 'Slam).

Those are my thoughts. I'm not too confident about the Dimitrov pick and I'm on the fence about the 4 or 5 Masters wins, but hey, it's all for fun.

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Re: 2012 pronostics

Man, Aiur wins one or two (or 5) fantasy tennis tournaments (in a row) and now he thinks he "KNOWS" something.  Psh.  The bravado.  The unmitigated gall!!

-Arvis

Re: 2012 pronostics

Arvis wrote:

Man, Aiur wins one or two (or 5) fantasy tennis tournaments (in a row) and now he thinks he "KNOWS" something.  Psh.  The bravado.  The unmitigated gall!!

-Arvis

I take no responsibility for the yes and no questions. All responsibility falls on the little magic 8 ball I won from Dave and Busters the other day.

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Re: 2012 pronostics

I'd like to point out that (as per my usual success at prediction) that Denis Istomin has completely fallen off the map at precisely the moment I predicted he would make the biggest rankings jump.

Mr. Istomin, if you're reading this, I apologize for destroying what should have been a banner year in your career.  And while I'm at it, I'd also like to make formal apologies to Roger Federer, Zheng Jie, and the Miami Dolphins organization for constantly being a blight on their success and happiness.

-Arvis