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1 Response to wb94becker_medvedev

  1. Voo de Mar says:
    Points won by each set: | 43-40, 43-39, 49-39, 42-44, 39-34 |
    Points won directly behind the serve:
    33 % Becker – 67 of 201
    29 % Medvedev – 61 of 211

    An epic 5-setter on Court no. 1 between the three-time Wimbledon champion Becker [10] and the best teenager at the time, almost 20-year-old Medvedev [6]. The Ukrainian became a Top 10er mainly thanks to his clay-court achievements, but in contrary to typical clay-courters he didn’t play with a lot of top-spin, his ground-strokes were flat and he was eager to attack the net, so good results on carpet and grass could be anticipated from him. Against Becker, he was approaching the net wisely, the only clear pattern he implemented meant that he wasn’t interested to attack it directly behind the 2nd serve. Something what seemed like Becker’s routine ‘3-0’ victory turned into a thriller, and just for the second time in the Wimbledon history, all five sets went to “5-all” (previously it had also happened in the fourth round, as Lendl defeated Woodforde 7-5, 6-7, 6-7, 7-5, 10-8 after 4 hours 46 minutes in 1988). Below the progress of the 4-hour 53-minute match between Becker and Medvedev in which each set could have gone either way:

    1st set: Becker had no problem to hold six times, he squandered a mini-set point at 4-all;
    led 3:0* in the tie-break to lose six points in a row, and it ended at 5/7 from his perspective
    2nd set: Becker saved six mini-set points, trailing 0/40 at 4-all and 5-all (two aces)
    3rd set: Becker came back from *2:4, at 4-all he saved another mini-set point, and took the breaker 7/3
    4th set: Medvedev fought off a mini-match point at 4-all, and took the breaker 7/3
    5th set: due to darkness the match was suspended at 1-all and resumed the following day… Becker trailed *2:4 again, there was 5-all (0/30) so he was six points away from defeat… he converted his second match point with a high backhand volley and raised his both arms into the air

    Medvedev criticized Becker after the match for slowing the pace down as a receiver. The German used to play in very slow pace as a server, but when the things didn’t work his way, he was trying to do it as a receiver too, perhaps the Ukrainian didn’t know that… Except the last set, almost the same scoreline like two years before in the US Open semifinal (Becker and Medvedev played 7 points more in the 33-minute shorter encounter). Sometimes one big match turns someone’s career for better or worse, it was the latter case considering Medvedev. He was just a teenager, already with two “Mercedes Super 9” titles and two French Open semi/quarterfinals (twice defeated by the eventual champion Bruguera). In the aftermath of that bitter loss he wasn’t the same, began to lose his hair as well as his ranking, and remains as one of a few players who peaked before turning 20. At Wimbledon he didn’t play the “sweet sixteen” again in his another seven trips to the All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club.

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