What happened to the mental wherewithal in men's tennis? - MensTennisForums.com

 
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-10-2007, 02:11 PM Thread Starter
Registered User
 
mongo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 347
                     
What happened to the mental wherewithal in men's tennis?

First, I want to express my apologies to Fee for she may find this thread elsewhere and become "unnervered." I'm looking for a broad cross-section of responses.

Why do so few top players today have the mental wherewithal and determination of those of previous generations?

I'll offer "my guy", Marat Safin, as a case study. Sure, injuries have cost him time, but more importantly, his focus, or lack thereof, has cost him much more.

Aside from Federer, Nadal and (apparently, if not hopefully) Djokovic, the circuit is full of Hewitts--derailed by a "shotgun" wedding--Nalbandians, Baghdatises and Blakes. Compare them to the likes of Connors, McEnroe, Lendl, Wilander and Edberg and you'll come to the same conclusion as I: there's no comparison.

Anyone want to take a shot at this conundrum? I'll start.

1. Many have noted that strategy and point construction was a huge part of the game until power took over. Yet, it seems that once power was neurtalized, a mental vaacuum appeared.

2. Prize money? Are players too comfortable now? Is Hewitt talking a good talk, but simply satisfied collecting a big paycheck week after week?

What you say?

Thanks in advance.
mongo is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-10-2007, 02:22 PM
-PREMIUM MEMBER-
 
Jenrios's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Age: 40
Posts: 4,086
                     
Re: What happened to the mental wherewithal in men's tennis?

I'd say prize money and sponsorship plays it's part. Someone like Marat has made a lot of money from tennis - he could retire now and be well off for the rest of his life. Don't forget, the players also get appearance money - they can turn up, lose first round and still make a lot of money - especially if they are amongst the 'popular' players.

Also, maybe the 'traditional element' from tennis maybe lacking. Monte Carlo has been down-graded from next year - and yet in the 1980's/90's, it was a prestigious tournament to win. Maybe today's players think of tournaments in order of money on offer? not on the great players in the past who won them.

I think for me the most talented of all times was (Marcelo) Rios. Marat Safin, 2004

Marcelo has an enormous talent. Gaudio, RG champion 2004

"Rios ... he has a beautiful game, great forehand and great touch," Federer, World number 1

Guillermo Coria: "Ríos and Vilas are my two idols"
Jenrios is offline  
post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-10-2007, 02:27 PM
Retired Party Hostess
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 14,983
                     
Re: What happened to the mental wherewithal in men's tennis?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jenrios View Post
I'd say prize money and sponsorship plays it's part. Someone like Marat has made a lot of money from tennis - he could retire now and be well off for the rest of his life. Don't forget, the players also get appearance money - they can turn up, lose first round and still make a lot of money - especially if they are amongst the 'popular' players.

Also, maybe the 'traditional element' from tennis maybe lacking. Monte Carlo has been down-graded from next year - and yet in the 1980's/90's, it was a prestigious tournament to win. Maybe today's players think of tournaments in order of money on offer? not on the great players in the past who won them.
All good points. Money is a major culprit. When there is no sense of urgency, as in...I have to win so I can put food on the table or a roof over my head, it's far easier to become complacent.

When you can make a fabulous salary by most measures, buy lots of toys, and enjoy the perks of a great standard of living without killing yourself, the motivation doesn't necessarily manifest itself. Some players are content to just finance a lifestyle, not put forth 100% of their effort.
Kitty de Sade is offline  
post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-10-2007, 02:28 PM
Registered User
 
stebs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Age: 43
Posts: 11,530
                     
Re: What happened to the mental wherewithal in men's tennis?

There are longer rallies and slower courts with lots of retrieving. This makes choking easier. The tour being so deep as it is with most top 20 players being given a fight against most top 100 players means that surprising results happen more. Some fans put this down to the higher ranked player being poor mentally but really it is just that a bad day is more likely to cost you know than it was a while back.

Champions deserve whatever they win playing within the laws of the game
stebs is offline  
post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-10-2007, 02:29 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Age: 76
Posts: 2,672
                     
Re: What happened to the mental wherewithal in men's tennis?

1) Hewitt's problems are not mental, he just lacks the game to compete.

2) No difference against the previous generations. Lendl was a big time choker before the mid 80's, Edberg wsn't a mental giant exactly. Besides, your main examples of foremer players are taken from a period of 15+ years - Connors to Edberg. In Connors heydays, he and Borg were about the only ones to be reckoned with, Mac and Lendl dominated the same way, Edberg and Wilander too, now it's Fed-Nadal - the parallell is far from perfect, but you get the point.

Time to dig up the hitchhiker clown thread again.


I don't like hypocrites, but even worse are the ones who think it's OK to be an asshole as long as you are not hypocritical.
oz_boz is offline  
post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-10-2007, 09:15 PM
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Age: 43
Posts: 2,443
                     
Re: What happened to the mental wherewithal in men's tennis?

Quote:
Originally Posted by stebs View Post
There are longer rallies and slower courts with lots of retrieving. This makes choking easier. The tour being so deep as it is with most top 20 players being given a fight against most top 100 players means that surprising results happen more. Some fans put this down to the higher ranked player being poor mentally but really it is just that a bad day is more likely to cost you know than it was a while back.
Agree!
r2473 is offline  
post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-10-2007, 11:05 PM
Registered User
 
danton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,330
                     
Re: What happened to the mental wherewithal in men's tennis?

McEnroe a mental giant?? - when you first see one of his outbursts it's funny - after that it's just cringingly embarrasing - and he's still at it. He also withdrew from the tour for 6 months because he lost to Gilbert - poor didums
danton is offline  
post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 04-11-2007, 07:44 AM
Registered User
 
Dougie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 2,907
                     
Re: What happened to the mental wherewithal in men's tennis?

Quote:
Originally Posted by danton View Post
McEnroe a mental giant?? - when you first see one of his outbursts it's funny - after that it's just cringingly embarrasing - and he's still at it. He also withdrew from the tour for 6 months because he lost to Gilbert - poor didums
McEnroe´s outbursts don´t make him mentally weak. He´s one of the few players who actually play better after throwing a racquet or screaming at the umpire.
Dougie is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the MensTennisForums.com forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in









Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome