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FOLKERT HESSE

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Who are the 10 greatest tennis players of all time after Nadal won the US-Open? part 2



By 

FOLKERT HESSE

Of course this is not a new discussion, but after Rafael Nadal winning the US-Open, I am sure he changed the previous line-ups in many peoples opinions.
I also disagree with many others who put a lot of old names in the top 10. I don't think that 30 or 40 years ago the competition was nearly as tough as it is in today's men's tennis. Back in the 60's and 70's there were only a handful of professional players travelling around the world and tennis was an exclusive sport that only the rich people could afford. And not all of these players were training properly or even on a consistent basis. And I don't think that Roger Federer could afford to party the night before a match like Ilie Nastase. He would be beaten by a player outside the top 100 already. To put it in short words; back then they were players, today they are athletes.
Borg and Lendl were the ones who started to make tennis an athletic game and today every player is a highly trained athlete with a body-fat percentage of 10 % or less. Every player on the men's tour is 100% dedicated to his profession and faces thousands of players training as serious as they do.
That's why I don't think that we should compare players like Rod Laver, the 3 French Musketiers, Ken Rosewall, Ilie Nastase or Gillermo Vilas with today's modern athletes. And if we do so, we have to take in consideration, how much competition each generation of tennis players or athletes were facing.
So, here is my list of the 10 greatest Tennis Players of all time:

No. 9: Mats Wilander !
















My no. 9 is Mats Wilander!
The Swede won 7 Grand Slam titles and the only one he did not win was Wimbledon.
He was 20 weeks the no. 1 player in the world and also won the Davis-Cup twice for Sweden.
He was not as flashy as Boris Becker, but he for sure was one of the classiest players of all times and one of the best baseliners in the business.
Today he is a commentator for EuroSport and a good golf player.


No. 10: Boris Becker !
















Boris Becker is my No. 10, because he changed the game of tennis. His big serve, the blocked returns and his diving volley were new to the game and raised it to another level. 
But most of all he deserves to be in the top 10, because his game was so exciting to watch. There was never a match he won easily. So many of his matches went to the 5th set and an emotional roller coaster for himself and his fans.
He still is the youngest Wimbledon Champion ever and won 6 Grand Slam titles in total. Only the French open were missing for him to complete a career Grand Slam.
He held the No. 1 ranking for only 12 weeks, but he was facing a lot of big players throughout his career.
Sampras, Agassi, Courier, Edberg, Lendl, Wilander and even Mc Enroe were all fighting with him for the big titles and no. 1 ranking. That's quite a competition.
He also won the Davis-Cup title twice for Germany.
In my ranking he left Edberg behind to make the top 10, but it is very close between the two. 


Come back tomorrow to see who is no. 8  …


FOLKERT HESSE

HESSE TENNIS TRAINING
High Performance Training and Coaching for Top Juniors and Professionals

Folkert Hesse Tennis



Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Who are the 10 greatest tennis players of all time after Nadal won the US-Open?



By 

FOLKERT HESSE

Of course this is not a new discussion, but after Rafael Nadal winning the US-Open, I am sure he changed the previous line-ups in many peoples opinions.
I also disagree with many others who put a lot of old names in the top 10. I don't think that 30 or 40 years ago the competition was nearly as tough as it is in today's men's tennis. Back in the 60's and 70's there were only a handful of professional players travelling around the world and tennis was an exclusive sport that only the rich people could afford. And not all of these players were training properly or even on a consistent basis. And I don't think that Roger Federer could afford to party the night before a match like Ilie Nastase. He would be beaten by a player outside the top 100 already. To put it in short words; back then they were players, today they are athletes.
Borg and Lendl were the ones who started to make tennis an athletic game and today every player is a highly trained athlete with a body-fat percentage of 10 % or less. Every player on the men's tour is 100% dedicated to his profession and faces thousands of players training as serious as they do.
That's why I don't think that we should compare players like Rod Laver, the 3 French Musketiers, Ken Rosewall, Ilie Nastase or Gillermo Vilas with today's modern athletes. And if we do so, we have to take in consideration, how much competition each generation of tennis players or athletes were facing.
So, here is my list of the 10 greatest Tennis Players of all time:


No. 10: Boris Becker !


Boris Becker



















Boris Becker is my No. 10, because he changed the game of tennis. His big serve, the blocked returns and his diving volley were new to the game and raised it to another level. 
But most of all he deserves to be in the top 10, because his game was so exciting to watch. There was never a match he won easily. So many of his matches went to the 5th set and an emotional roller coaster for himself and his fans.
He still is the youngest Wimbledon Champion ever and won 6 Grand Slam titles in total. Only the French open were missing for him to complete a career Grand Slam.
He held the No. 1 ranking for only 12 weeks, but he was facing a lot of big players throughout his career.
Sampras, Agassi, Courier, Edberg, Lendl, Wilander and even Mc Enroe were all fighting with him for the big titles and no. 1 ranking. That's quite a competition.
He also won the Davis-Cup title twice for Germany.
In my ranking he left Edberg behind to make the top 10, but it is very close between the two. 


Come back tomorrow to see who is no. 9  …


FOLKERT HESSE

HESSE TENNIS TRAINING
High Performance Training and Coaching for Top Juniors and Professionals

Folkert Hesse Tennis

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Why Rafael Nadal will win the US-Open and win more Grand Slams than Roger Federer!



By 

FOLKERT HESSE

Roger Federer suffered a really hard loss yesterday against Novak Djokovic and finished the last Grand Slam of the year in the semi finals, a very disappointing end of the Grand Slam season 2010 for him.
But what might be the end of the Federer reign, might be the start of an even more dominant leader of the pack for the next years to come. Rafael Nadal will not only end this years rankings as No. 1, but he might be the first player in history to have double as many points as the no. 2 player. 

Rafael Nadal

And that shows how much he improved his game over the past years. While Roger Federer was not able to improve his backhand and his return game, Nadal worked with the same intensity on the weaker parts of his game, as he does in every match he plays on tour. He improved his serve speed, his backhand, the depth of his shots and his net game. And most importantly he is playing closer to the baseline which allows him to end the points quicker and make him move less. With his new and more aggressive game style he finishes his opponents faster and saves a lot of energy and therefore has fewer injuries.
The hard work and the courage to make some changes in his game and with his strings paid off and now he is in the US-Open final for the first time. And I am sure he won’t be there for the last time, if he stays healthy and keeps working on his game like he did. What will happen to Roger Federer remains to be seen and his fans can only hope that he will not blame and injury or illness for his loss, like he did after Wimbledon. If he is not willing to improve and work on his game anymore, he might not win another major. And then I can see Rafael Nadal passing him and winning more than 16 Grand Slams.

A disappointed Federer at the press conference after his loss to Djokovic

I am sure Nadal will win his 9th Grand Slam title today, even though some stats might indicate a very close match between him and Novak Djokovic. But when it comes to the big matches on the big stage, Rafa was always there and was able to play at his best. But more than that he is able to will his way to success, and that is something that he does better than anybody else. Better than Novak Djokovic, even though Novak is in great form, holds a 7-4 hard court record against Nadal, won the last 3 meetings of the two, has the game-style to beat him on hard courts and should be loaded with confidence after defeating Federer.
But Nadal will be the fitter player, because he had much more time to recover after his semi-final win over Youzhny and has spent less time on the hard courts of New York so far. On top of that he has some other stats in his favor, that point him out as the favorite in this match. Nadal was broken only twice in more than 90 service games he played at the Open. He had 37 aces to the 22 of Djokovic, had only 11 double faults to Novak’s 24 and saved 88% of the break points against him compared to the 72% of Djokovic. So, he is clearly the better server in this match-up, which hasn’t been the case in the previous meetings. The stats on the return games are almost even. Both players are considered the best return players on the men’s tour and have proven it once more in this tournament.
But the key to Nadal winning tonight will be his new aggressive game, which makes him less vulnerable to the Djokovic offence. Nadal will not give him the opportunity anymore to take his balls on the rise and hit winners from both wings, because his serve is much better now and he himself takes the balls on the rise and gives Djokovic less time to get in position for winners.
So, I think we will see the Spaniard taking his first, but for sure not last, US-Open crown today. And this will make him the youngest career grand slam champion (winning all 4 slams) in history and only the second player in history to win 3 slams in a row in the same calendar year (after Laver).
And hopefully Roger will not quit and come back strong next year to challenge him…



FOLKERT HESSE

HESSE TENNIS TRAINING
High Performance Training and Coaching for Top Juniors and Professionals

Folkert Hesse Tennis


Saturday, September 11, 2010

10 Reasons why Roger Federer can't beat Rafael Nadal...


By 

FOLKERT HESSE

Roger Federer is the greatest tennis player of all time and holds almost every record in the history books of tennis. But why can’t he beat Rafael Nadal and has a 7-14 record against the Spaniard?
Now it looks like the two tennis giants will meet in the final of the US-Open tomorrow. It would be their first meeting at the US-Open at all and for world no. 1 Rafa Nadal it would be even the first over all appearance in the finals of the US-Open, while Roger Federer has won the tournament for the past 5 years.
But still, I don’t think that Roger will be the favorite for this match.

Federer crying after loss at Australian Open ...

Tomorrow I will give you the top 10 reasons, why Federer against Nadal is a very, very bad match-up for the Swiss …
I think he will lose the final against Nadal, and I will tell you why.


FOLKERT HESSE

HESSE TENNIS TRAINING
High Performance Training and Coaching for Top Juniors and Professionals


Folkert Hesse Tennis


Super Saturday at US-Open!



By 

FOLKERT HESSE

Like always at the US-Open, the two men’s semi finals and the women’s final will be played on Saturday. No. 2 seed Kim Clijsters will take on no. 7 seed Vera Zwonarewa and the top 3 men’s seed, Nadal, Federer and Djokovic will be joined by no. 12 seed Mikahail Yuzhny. No US player on Super Saturday is a big disappointment for the New York fans, but everyone is hoping for the big final between Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal on Sunday.

Roger, Kim and Rafa at US-Open Exhibition

It would be the first meeting at the US-Open for the two great rivals and the first overall final for Nadal. On top of that he would have the great opportunity to be the second over all player in history to win 3 consecutive majors in one calendar year, after Rod Laver.
But before he can think of a final against Federer, he has to overcome the “Youzhny-hurdle” to get there. It sounds not too difficult, but it might be a difficult match for Rafa, because the fearless Russian, has nothing to lose in this match at all. And for Rafa it is the biggest opportunity to make some history. The match-up is a good one for him though, since his heavy top-spin balls is one of the reasons why he seems to dominate the single handed backhand-players at will and also holds a 14-7 record against Federer. And playing right-handed Youzhny today could be the perfect warm up for the possible Federer match tomorrow.
But Federer has a high road to ride himself, before he can go for a 6th consecutive US-Open title on Sunday. Even though he defeated the same opponent in the semi’s of  the past two US-Open already, Djokovic is playing much stronger and solid at this year’s Open. He easily beat Fish and Monfils in 3 sets and looks very ready to give the big Fed a hard time today.
But no matter what, Nadal and Federer always have to be considered the heavy favorites when they play in the semi final of a Grand Slam. So, it will be exciting and fans will cheer for a dream final on Sunday, 5-time champion Roger against No. 1 Nadal.

On The women’s side there is a clear favorite, even though Vera Zwonarewa is this year’s Wimbledon finalist and the shooting star of 2010. But 2 time and defending champion Kim Clijsters played better and better in every one of her matches and defeated Sam Stosur and Venus Williams in great fashion. She has the experience and the form to beat the Russian in 2 sets and take her 3rd US-Open crown and another step towards the no. 1 world ranking for the end of the year.

It will be a great day of tennis, even though many New Yorker will have to put some sad thought in the back of their had today, in order to enjoy only tennis on this September 11th.
May it be a day of great tennis AND happiness!


FOLKERT HESSE

HESSE TENNIS TRAINING
High Performance Training and Coaching for Top Juniors and Professionals


Folkert Hesse Tennis