The Martina Navratilova age thing carries no weight for me. She was still making Wimbledon finals up until 1993 from memory - Graf started winning grand slams five years before that.
The most obvious difference is not the talent of the opposition, but the mental incompetence of their relative opposition.
Graf was taking on and beating Navratilova, Evert, Seles, Sanchez-Vicario, Moonball Martinez, Mary-Joe Fernandez, Helena Sukova, Amanda Coetzer, Davenport, Pierce and Hingis later on - these were mentally tough players used to the big occasion.
She also beat her fair share of talented players who maybe weren't that mentally strong but had the weapons - Novotna, Sabbatini etc.
Really, who has Williams beaten that you could describe as mentally strong? Hingis, Henin-Hardenne and Davenport are the only ones who spring to mind. Even Venus, take her away from Wimbledon and she's not that great herself, and in the case of Hingis their careers only overlapped for a couple of years.
Of Williams' 15 grand slams, three of her finals wins have been against Hingis, Davenport and Henin.
The other 12 have been against Radwanska, Safina, Jankovic, Azarenka, Sharapova, Jankovic, Zovonareva.
Of those players only Sharapova is anything remotely close to mentally strong, and she's hot and cold herself.
It seems like every other grand slam has involved some talented but mentally retarded European taking a 6-2 4-1 lead in a fourth round or quarter final match against Williams only to fall apart and serve three double faults and fail thereafter to win a point in the entirety of the match.
Obviously she herself is a fighter and is mentally strong but there is no comparison IMO between what she has done and what Graf achieved
Last edited by michaelthorpe
on Thu Jan 01, 1970 12:33 am, edited 1 time in total.