Sunday, August 28, 2011

Tennis, then and now

With the US Open beginning this week, the latest issue of Forbes India has an essay I've written about men's tennis - it's a comparison of the major rivalries at the seminal 1981 US Open (Bjorn Borg's final Slam) with the ones that we see today, 30 years later, as well as a comment on how sporting narratives get written, fandom then and now, and the mythologising of top players. I've also touched on Steve Tignor's fine book High Strung: Bjorn Borg, John McEnroe and the Untold Story of Tennis's Fiercest Rivalry.

Will only be able to put the piece on the blog after 10 days (and it will also be on the Forbes India website then), but if you're interested in reading it now do pick up the magazine.

(Also coming up soon: a piece about Rafael Nadal's new autobiography)


  1. Speaking of rivalries in Tennis, I wonder why there are no major rivals amongst female tennis players!

    One of the biggest and most unexpected upsets happened in the match between Tracy Austin and Chris Evert-who were hardly considered rivals!

  2. rantings: huh? There have been several great rivalries among female players in the Open Era - EVert-Navratilova, Graf-Navratilova, Graf-Seles being only three of the most obvious ones. Today, of course, the WTA is in a relatively poor shape - nothing comparable to the Federer-Nadal-Djokovic trivalries there.

  3. NYT had a very good piece on Tennis rivalries

  4. I don't know if I would go as far as to say that th WTA is in a bad shape. True, there is no rivalry among 2/3 female players as there is in the men's circuit, but the other way to look at it is that it's intensely competitive with lot of new players (mostly from Eastern Europe) upsetting the more established names, thus making a mockery of WTA rankings. However, it remains to be seen how many of these young wonders can actually sustain in the long term.

  5. Salut, ca va?

    si ta pas envie de gagner de largent gratuitement alors jette moi au poubelle....

    mais si tu change didee alors
    Rend toi vite à cette adresse
    tres bon site en passant lache pas

  6. There is hardly any rivalry after Fed and Nadal...i think most women tennis players have other goals and they don't care much for tennis...look at Williams sisters. I read somewhere they wanted to pursue MBA and hence entered the world of tennis. Henin and Clijsters - both gave a much higher priority to what they wanted from their personal lives than professional tennis lives. Was just wondering does it show a change in attitude of women in the West in last 15 years or so? may be they have started taking Maslow's need hierarchy model very seriously :-)