from Tennis (October 1990 issue)
by Donna Doherty
When the IBM/ATP Tour changed the men pros' ranking system to a best-of-14-results format, tour officials promised it would better reflect the present playing form of the pros and make the points race more exciting. There have been some criticisms of the system, but it appears to have come through as promised, as the August 13 rankings in this issue reflect a new No. 1 in the game - Stefan Edberg, who took over the No. 1 spot from Ivan Lendl at the ATP Championships in Cincinnati.
Lendl had held that spot since 1985, relinquishing it only for two months at the end of 1988 to Mats Wilander. After Edberg won Wimbledon in July, there was a lot of talk about the rivalry he and Boris Becker enjoyed in their constant seesaw battle for the No. 2 spot, but Edberg made it clear then that he was aiming a little higher.
He's been chasing the spot for two years now, and asserted himself as a power to be reckoned with when he beat Lendl and Becker back to back at the Nabisco Masters last fall. Edberg repeated the feat to win Wimbledon.
"There's a lot of hard work behind the success," the Swede said in Cincinnati. "It's a great achievement. I feel good within myself. It's important to be No. 1 once in your career."
He should feel good, because he joined a pretty elite group. Amazingly, only eight men have reached that lofty position since the start of the computer rankings in August 1973. llie Nastase was the first (1973), followed by John Newcombe (1974). Jimmy Connors took over in July 1974 and held the spot for 159 weeks - longer than any player in the computer's history. He lost his spot to Bjorn Borg (1977), who was overtaken by John McEnroe (1980).
Lendl first hit No. 1 on Feb. 23, 1983, and was only three weeks shy of Connors' record when Wilander took over.
Of course, one of the main reasons Edberg ascended the throne in men's tennis is because of his serve. Instruction Editor Dennis Van der Meer claims that most of the students in his clinics ask about how to improve their serves, so he and Senior Editor Norman Zeitchick put together our cover story on quick cures for your service woes, which begins on page 26.
And, in keeping with the "quick cure" theme and today's emphasis on fitness and conditioning, Senior Editor David Higdon and teaching pro Greg Moran have come up with "A 29-Minute Stretch & Strengthen Workout," which starts on page 36.
Maybe by winter we'll be serving like Edberg and as fit as Lendl. And maybe we'll even have another No. 1.
- Tennis Magazine, an unlikely ranking of the best grasscourt players
- Becker: I was sleeping during Wimbledon 1990 final
- Cincinnati, Twitter users pay homage to Fedberg duo
- Federer's words of praise for Edberg after Cincinnati title
- How Stefan Edberg used his forehand to take the net
- A Stand-up Guy
- Edberg consolidates
- Why Edberg never smiles
- Edberg, the unfinished peak - The frustrated of Bercy
- Unbeatable number two
- The child of fortune
- Edberg Officially In Wilson's Court
- Edberg Comfortable at the Top
- Edberg's overtaking
- I ♥ France