That was indeed a misconception I had, thanks for clarifying dmast. So what was the main difference between the 80s and the 90s? Racquet technology? Was that it? I mean.. did baseline tennis start purely from Lendl and just kept getting stronger and stronger?
What exactly kept players from S&V through the years at Wimbledon if, as Babblelot said, people like Rafter and such have done it? Is Babblelot telling me then that the tennis of the 90s played at Wimbledon is just as effective now as it was back then?
See.. I just don't understand how, with relatively the same racquet technology, the same athletic build of players, the same coaches to a certain extent, growing up in the 90s environment .. how did Wimbledon go from being the Sampras and Rafter tournament to a Nadal tournamet? I mean how did.. even back in 2002, how did Hewitt and Nalbandian manage to make the final, and what's more, play a final without ever playing a S&V point? This was like right after years and years of Sampras, Rafter, Ivanisevic, Henamn and such having most success.
As a professional, if S&V had even some kind of advantage today in the pro game, wouldn't it already have been utilized? I mean, monster's right in that its much easier to just stay from the baseline and bash but this might the approach I might take to my tennis, I can't imagine a professional who dedicates his life to finding the cutting edge that will take him beyond the others take this approach.
And that's just grass I suppose. And you know.. look at Usopen, Wikipedia tells me that the list of winners through the 90s only includes Edberg (2) Sampras (4) Agassi (2) Rafter (2) Safin (1). And the trend is still somewhat similar, its the agressive players who are doing better and are a fair shot to making deep into USO.
What happened to the same agressive players (those players mentioned were also the same players doing well at Wimbledon in the 90s) now? Why can't they do well on grass? Why is it that we look towards people like Ferrer and Nadal to make big runs at the Wimbledon now? Is it not that the surface is just plain different than it used to?
For what its worth, even the AO had agressive players and S&V players take the trophy through the 90s, including Sampras (2) and Becker (2). And, this is again not really part of anything we are talking about I think, the hard surfaces have remained more or less the same from what I can tell with the same kind of people winning there.
I am just confused and lost and all I can base on is the trend of the type of succesful players over the years. I don't really have any real knowledge past 2005 and have watched very little tennis relative to most folks and that too only lately. But from what I can gather, I'd still conclude that the surface change has been a major change over the last year years.
Of course I am not saying its all on the surface, sure Roddick and Blake should have taken time to learn to volley to complement thier power games and shoot towards more complete players like Sampras and Becker, but regardless, surface is the biggest change I can see.
As for Federer, all I can say is he has the all court game. He beat Sampras by S&V more and better than Sampras. He won his first title with a lot of S&V. 2004 Wimbledon there was the S&V again. And his backcourt game has been on display very nicely everywhere else because that's all he needs, he has no need to pressure opponents anywhere since then (again, why? perhaps becahse he now has more time than ever before to setup his much more powerful forehand and in general has plenty of time to move perfectly and play his solid ground game and no need to take risks like S&V
). How many pros out there even know how to slice a backhand properly these days? dropshots? Take any match Fed played in TMC 2007 and you'll see all-court tennis. I don't see how this fits into the discussion though, Federer does what he needs to win and he has displayed variety and all sorts of game over the years. What has Nadal showed us? What variety did he show to earn the Wimbledon crown? I digress, I still don't see where this fits into the changes of Wimbledon besides the fact that (my whole claim pretty much in a nutshell) the trend in Wimbledon winners is leading more and more towards the defensive game over the agressive game, and all else equal, the only reason for this is the surface change.
that was too long a post. makes me want to go delete some of it.. or break it into two just so I don't have to convince myself I wrote that much B.S
or Babblelot, as you said, a lot of that is plain hyperbole and some sorta twisting of words to make it come out bitter and whatnot!