ao03agassi_ferreira

ao03agassi_ferreira

Points won by each set: [ 26-19, 30-18, 34-25 ]
Points won directly behind the serve:
29 % Agassi – 21 of 71
34 % Ferreira – 28 of 81

11 years after his first appearance in a Grand Slam semifinal (also Australian Open), the 32-year-old Ferreira [39] reached that stage for the second and last time. Unfortunately for him, he faced his toughest opponent – Agassi [2]. Ferreira as one of the best players of the 90s, beat all the best guys of his generation (a few older great champions as well) except Agassi. It was their 11th & last meeting, and only once Ferreira had been close to beat the American, at the Olympics in Atlanta ’96; all other encounters were one-sided. In the Aussie Open semifinal Agassi broke twice in each set and converted his third match point with a drive-volley, the match lasted only 1 hour 28 minutes… I think there’s an explanation of Ferreira’s inability to deal with Agassi: the South African was known as a player possessing a formidable forehand, but he needed a big swing to produce that stroke with best possible quality. Facing Agassi, he simply hadn’t enough time to play on his own terms from the baseline. Ferreira was a very good doubles player, so he could apply serve-and-volley tactics as a plan B, but it could work against typical serve-and-volleyers, not against baseliners, therefore Ferreira was pretty much hopeless with Agassi standing on the other side of the net.

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