My strong opinion is that Rafa should have played a warmup tournament on grass before W (Hale). big mistake.
He put himself in a jam, played too much so needed rest but also needed a warmup.
He could have played a few rounds and then tank, that may have worked.
Did he ever skip the warmup event before?
2007 he played Queens, reached the Final of W
2008 he played Queens, won W
2009 didn't play on grass at all
2010 he played Queens, won W
2011 he played Queens, reached the Final of W
2012 he played Hale, lost in R2 at W
2013 no warmup tournament, lost in R1 at W
so, you, see the pattern. every time he played a warmup tournament on grass (except last year), he reached the final or won Wimbledon (since 2007)
1974: RG - W
, Nottingham - R32
, Wimbledon - R32
1975: RG - W,
Wimbledon - QF
1976: RG - QF
, Wimbledon - W
1977: RG - Absent, Wimbledon - W
(last tourney prior to Wimby on April 18 in Denver, winning on carpet, RG locked Borg out due to WTT contract)1978: RG - W, Wimbledon - W
1979: RG - W, Wimbledon - W
1980: RG - W, Davis Cup SWE vs GER (Clay) - W(2), Wimbledon - W
1981: RG - W
, Wimbledon - F
1982: Skipped all majors because of ITF rules regarding minimum tournament play to avoid qualification rounds.
Those that doubt his ability and mental fortitude vs. McEnroe following the 81 Wimbledon and US Open losses, need to look at this video of Borg vs. McEnroe in Sydney on carpet at the November 1982 AKAI Gold Challenge round robin where he beat McEnroe in 4 sets, and trounced soon to be #1 Lendl in 3 sets in a last great performance prior to his retirement the following January.
Watch the whole McEnroe-Borg match (this part plus parts 2 and 3) on YouTube. The darkness of the video is to contrast the ball better.
Borg never needed any warmup grass events to win Wimbledon, relying on his pure talent, incredible speed and adaptability.
3 straight Channel Slams - lost to McEnroe in 1981 in bid for 4th straight Channel Slam and 6 straight Wimbledons.
Likely he would have won another channel slam had he been allowed to play at RG in 1977. Vilas won it that year, and Borg beat Vilas in two clay matches prior to that RG and clobbered Vilas the following year at RG 1978, 1, 1, and 3.Bjorn Borg: Excellent on all surfaces and very high up on my list of the greatest players in the history of tennis. Watching him play in those days with his modified Donnay Allwood extended grip racquet strung at an incredible 80 lbs. was an amazing experience