Why did no one really like Lendl? [Archive] - MensTennisForums.com

Why did no one really like Lendl?

mdhallu
06-10-2006, 11:36 PM
I know a lot of people on here are too young to remember Lendl but why is he never really mentioned that much? Critics have ranked him above the likes of McEnroe, Agassi, Becker yet it seems like no one really liked him enough to praise him that much...Did people view him as being boring and ugly?

stebs
06-10-2006, 11:37 PM
I like Lendl :)

Action Jackson
06-10-2006, 11:37 PM
Ok, I have this huge interview that I copied here and I will bump it up.

kimfantoo
06-10-2006, 11:39 PM
:wavey: I remember Lendl, I loved him, and still do. I don't see him as ugly at all. And he's a great tennis player :)

stebs
06-10-2006, 11:40 PM
Lendl and Federer are the best two forehands of all time.

R.Federer
06-11-2006, 12:13 AM
I am old enough to have lived through the Lendl era; liked him but wasn't a favorite of mine

mandoura
06-11-2006, 12:15 AM
I know a lot of people on here are too young to remember Lendl but why is he never really mentioned that much? Critics have ranked him above the likes of McEnroe, Agassi, Becker yet it seems like no one really liked him enough to praise him that much...Did people view him as being boring and ugly?

Are you kidding? Lendl was, is one of my all time favourites. :)

NicoFan
06-11-2006, 12:26 AM
I liked him because he was awesome, but the reason people didn't like him was that he was very businesslike on court. Never showed any emotion. People thought that he was really cold.

He lives in my home state, and there are articles on him now and again. He has a daughter that I think is into golf....none of the girls if I remember right likes tennis. But he sounds like a very proud and good dad. Much different from the man who rarely showed his personal side when he was playing.

Howard
06-11-2006, 12:32 AM
Iíve been a tennis fan for a long time and I watched Lendl from the beginning of his career to the end. I always had great respect for his work ethic, his professionalism and his fight-to-the-death attitude in every match. However, his tennis was just so mechanical and so predictable that his matches were exercises in tedium - unless he played a shotmaker like Mecir or net-players like Edberg and McEnroe.

I never disliked Lendl personally, and his on-court stony demeanor didn't bother me in the slightest. (It was no different than Borg's.) I just didnít care for his tennis.

MisterQ
06-11-2006, 12:37 AM
As far as Americans were concerned, I think the cold war mentality probably played into things too. As an eastern European, Lendl was somehow of the "other side," and his serious demeanor and intensity fit into unfortunate stereotypes about the Eastern Bloc. It's strange to think of all that now...

amierin
06-11-2006, 12:41 AM
I remember Lendl too and I think it was his style of tennis that stopped him from being a fan fave. You had JMac, Borg who was hot despite his stoic demeanor and a lot of other players with a lot of charm and charisma. Lendl came to play tennis and his style won him quite a few events. I don't think he should be left out of any discussions though. He might not have been the most charismatic but he was one of the best.

Action Jackson
06-11-2006, 12:43 AM
As far as Americans were concerned, I think the cold war mentality probably played into things too. As an eastern European, Lendl was somehow of the "other side," and his serious demeanor and intensity fit into unfortunate stereotypes about the Eastern Bloc. It's strange to think of all that now...

You know the best bit? Lendl is almost as funny as yourself, but the media would never say that. :)

MisterQ
06-11-2006, 12:44 AM
You know the best bit? Lendl is almost as funny as yourself, but the media would never say that. :)

It's true, I've read some of the interviews you've posted. :lol:

Corey Feldman
06-11-2006, 12:59 AM
im not sure why Lendl was disliked alot..
his on court demeanor was seen as a bit boring and too serious (same kind of criticism that was aimed at Sampras during the 90's)
or according to Pat Cash, lendl was a bully and very unpleasant to mostly him and everyone during his days on tour, although im not sure id take Pat Cash's words on anything :lol:

gusman890
06-11-2006, 01:12 AM
i liked Lendl personally, he seemed like the kinda of inspiration to train really hard and make your self a champion from scratch.

kinda like talent only runs so deep, training can take that to a different level.


Yeah, Lendl lives in Connecticut.

yours truly, lives approx. an hr and 1/2 from him, given im on the bottom of the state near new haven (since im a ballboy for the pilot pen in august). but he lives more on the upper side of connecticut and himself and his daughters are really into golf.

Haute
06-11-2006, 01:17 AM
He lives in my home state, and there are articles on him now and again. He has a daughter that I think is into golf....none of the girls if I remember right likes tennis. But he sounds like a very proud and good dad. Much different from the man who rarely showed his personal side when he was playing.

He's a pretty big golfer these days too, isn't he?

NicoFan
06-11-2006, 01:20 AM
Yeah, Lendl lives in Connecticut.

yours truly, lives approx. an hr and 1/2 from him, given im on the bottom of the state near new haven (since im a ballboy for the pilot pen in august). but he lives more on the upper side of connecticut and himself and his daughters are really into golf.

I know this is :topic: :lol: ... sorrrrry. But I live in NY, and will head up to the Pilot Pen if Nico or my other favs play there. I went last year and liked it. Nice little tournament. Just wish they would do something about the practice courts...all those darn trees, you can't see the players. :( Yale has more money than The Man Upstairs - they can definitely afford to improve the grounds a bit.

And I thought Lendl lived in Greenwich?

Thanks for confirming his daughters are into golf.

NicoFan
06-11-2006, 01:23 AM
He's a pretty big golfer these days too, isn't he?

I think so - I read the article about a year maybe more so don't want to comment too much because don't remember it exactly. But gusman confirmed that yes indeed his daughters are really into golf, and I believe that he loves the game too.

I hope Pete and Andre's kids like tennis, because Ivan, Johnny Mac, Chrissy - none of their kids like tennis. :lol:

gusman890
06-11-2006, 01:33 AM
haha yeahhhhh Yale has alot of money, i mean i only like the trees to get out of the sun for once.

but ur right the practice courts are in bad viewing haha.

yeahh i think he lives in goshen, CT. but ive heared Greenwich too.
but i think its goshen because he just recently put his house on the market.

http://www.klemmrealestate.com/feature_hh/featurehh.html

but hey, hes a cool dude, i wanna sneak in his hosue and meet him before his guards shoot me

Action Jackson
06-11-2006, 01:37 AM
but hey, hes a cool dude, i wanna sneak in his hosue and meet him before his guards shoot me

It's the dogs you have to worry about, there is the interview to read on page 1 if you're bored. :p

sammy2
06-11-2006, 01:51 AM
Lendl was a wonderful player. Evidently because of back injury he can't play tennis anymore, but can play golf - so as he is a great sportsman he has taken it up.
Lendl was always great to watch playing, but was a very private person, and not all that animated in interviews etc. Remember, at the time he was playing the 'bad boys of tennis' were taking most of the headlines. Connors, McEnroe, Agassi at the start, and so other top players were left out of the publicity loop. The Swedes were also up there and were the 'handsome ones'. lendl was neither bad nor especially handsome. I don't think he was disliked, just not interesting.

mecir72
06-11-2006, 08:18 AM
It is true Lendl is not often talked about dispite his amazing achievements. US Open finalist 1982-1989 is pretty impressive. Somehow he was never fan favourite in any of his matches though it seems.

decrepitude
06-11-2006, 08:39 AM
I liked him, he was my favourite player of the time. I loved his athleticism, the passing shot down the line on the run was fabulous. It used to annoy me intensely how the BBC would seem to show every possible other match in preference to showing his matches.

Billy Moonshine
06-11-2006, 12:17 PM
I liked him.
He is more my kind of player. I can't stand McEnroe, Connors types. All that showboating. Lendl just worked hard and let his skill speak for itself.
Bravo!

jenanun
06-11-2006, 12:22 PM
when i was small, i thought he looks like a vampire... dunno why...

but i m neutral, i don't like or dislike him

Lleytonisthebest
06-11-2006, 06:24 PM
yeah lendl has also 8 slams and guys like becker or edberg are more popular ...

thrust
06-11-2006, 09:55 PM
Lendl was a non American who lacked the charisma of John and Jimmy. In the beginning they would usually beat him in the big matches. In short time, however, he dominated them having winning records against both. His game was a bit mechanical but very consistant. I was a fan of his who admired his determination and also felt sorry for him because of his usual lack of support of the American fans.

Lady Natalia
06-11-2006, 10:02 PM
What I find amazing about the lack of affection shown towards Lendl is the Sports Illustrated cover. I find it to be a complete disrespect to a great tennis Grand Slam champion (and at the time the number 1 player). He might have been boring to watch, but he was effective, except at Wimbledon. And my response to him not being as charismatic as others, but I bet he has more GSs than most of them do. It's actually quite ironic the "boring" players, Lendl, Sampras, Federer, are the arguably greatest of all time.

MisterQ
06-11-2006, 10:11 PM
What I find amazing about the lack of affection shown towards Lendl is the Sports Illustrated cover. I find it to be a complete disrespect to a great tennis Grand Slam champion (and at the time the number 1 player). He might have been boring to watch, but he was effective, except at Wimbledon. And my response to him not being as charismatic as others, but I bet he has more GSs than most of them do. It's actually quite ironic the "boring" players, Lendl, Sampras, Federer, are the arguably greatest of all time.

This one?

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/features/cover/2002/jinx/80s/091586lg.jpg

Lady Natalia
06-11-2006, 10:12 PM
Thats it!!

MisterQ
06-11-2006, 10:17 PM
Here's a nice and well-argued tribute to Lendl:

http://www.1stserve.com/newsite/legacy.asp

gusman890
06-11-2006, 10:46 PM
yeahh lendl is the father of modern tennis.

federer even took lendl's habit of chaning your racket before every new ball change.

star
06-12-2006, 12:18 AM
Lendl had a very sour personality on the court and was scarcastic off the court. He liked to needle other players.

This one incident sort of sums Lendl up for me. He was playing in the U.S. Open and a ball girl pulled up lame as she was running diagonally across the court retrieving Lendl's first serve into the net. She was visibly in pain right in front of Lendl and limped to the side of the court. Lendl immediately turned to the umpire and asked for two serves.

sawan66278
06-12-2006, 12:35 AM
Growing up, Lendl was my all-time favorite player (even Snoop Dogg said Lendl was "the Truth"). His forehand and backhand were beautiful to watch, and I truly believe, no one had better passing shots (in the history of tennis) than Lendl. I believe the above posters hit it right on the head about the negative U.S. and Europen attitudes about Eastern Block countries, and Lendl not having the "looks" of the Swedes. It's ironic, because Lendl's dream was to play Davis Cup for the U.S.

I still remember almost crying when Lendl lost to Becker in the '89 Wimbledon Semis after being up two sets to one and a break...when it started raining... :sad: :sad: And then his best chance at Wimbledon went up in smoke...

I still remember my favorite Lendl run was in the 1991 U.S. Open...where he beat Connors in the third round (after saying Lendl wasn't the player he used to be) and beating Becker in over FIVE HOURS in the 4TH ROUND!!!! And then losing to Edberg in a fifth set tie-breaker over two days, after saving four match points the night before!!! (Again a delay because of rain!!!!!! :sad:

Ivan...no doubt the greatest player of the 80's!!!

Lady Natalia
06-12-2006, 12:39 AM
I still remember almost crying when Lendl lost to Becker in the '89 Wimbledon Semis after being up two sets to one and a break...when it started raining... :sad: :sad: And then his best chance at Wimbledon went up in smoke...


That is my greatest fear about what happened earlier in Paris.

sawan66278
06-12-2006, 12:54 AM
Don't worry, Lady Natalia...as long as Fed is healthy, I think he will do it...Lendl at Wimbledon was like a fish out of water, Roger at the French is like a fresh water fish in the ocean...he can swim there for a little while ;)

gusman890
06-12-2006, 01:09 AM
Lendl should whope roger into better shape like he did sampras and then he wouldnt be afriad of nadal anymore.

Lendl has that affect on people, the combo of Lendl and Rouche will make roger unbeatable

Clara Bow
06-12-2006, 01:24 AM
Lendl, my heart never really warmed up to him but I could appreciate his tennis. In large point because my mom loved Lendl. Starting at the age of eight or so I had pics of Edberg, Wilander, Noah and later Becker on my wall in my room. Edberg and Wilander pics both had lipstick kiss marks from lipstick I stole from my mom. And whenever I would root against Lendl my mom would say that I didn't like him because he wasn't a cutie. Perhaps. At that age I was shallow...but my mom did help me appreciate Lendl's tennis more than I would have being a little shallow gradeschooler.

My mom was also frustrated by the fact that I never like Navratilova as much as she did btw. I would always root for Chrisse- while mom rooted for Martina. Now that I am older and can really appreciate how great a player Martina was, and my mom is finally happy in that regard.

mongo
06-12-2006, 02:21 AM
Iíve been a tennis fan for a long time and I watched Lendl from the beginning of his career to the end. I always had great respect for his work ethic, his professionalism and his fight-to-the-death attitude in every match. However, his tennis was just so mechanical and so predictable that his matches were exercises in tedium - unless he played a shotmaker like Mecir or net-players like Edberg and McEnroe.

I never disliked Lendl personally, and his on-court stony demeanor didn't bother me in the slightest. (It was no different than Borg's.) I just didnít care for his tennis.Excellent post.

If you were a McEnroe fan, you had to dispise Lendl--McEnroe did. Back then, things were very different. Connors-McEnroe-Lendl had great contempt for one another, and it spilled out onto the court. Much different today, where there is, IMO, too much mutual respect. Two "highlights" from last year were Hewitt-Coria in Davis Cup and Coria-Massu at USO. If you recall these matches, that's often the way it was back then when, say, McEnroe met Lendl.

One final point, it's broadly believed that Lendl's incredible run of 8 consecutive USO final appearances virtually "killed" tennis in the States until Pete and Andre arrived. Television coverage of the AO and FO was sparse in the states; back then, many players skipped the AO. So for American viewers, tennis was relegated to Wimby and the USO. When Lendl began his domination, Americans lost interest. The USO has many things to compete against: NFL, college football, MLB pennent races.