The Top-Performing Nations On Clay In Men’s Tennis - UBITENNIS
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The Top-Performing Nations On Clay In Men’s Tennis

Which nation is, performance-wise, the best on the dirt?

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Using the dataset found in the previous article “The Greatest Tennis Players On Clay In The Open Era: An Analysis“, UbiTennis now presents an analysis of the performances of each country, using a “drill down” or “downward spiral drill” methodology, where being at the bottom means actually being at the forefront of this special ranking. For this purpose, a new dataset was created in order to build aggregate scores and verify the performances of every nation for each year.

 

The analyses were focused on the so-called “big titles”, Slams and Masters 1000 or whatever their name was since the Grand Prix was created in 1970, considering that, over the years, these tournaments have been grouped under some collective names such as: Grand Prix ​​Super Series (until 1989, also including a few WCT events), then Championship Series, Super 9 and Masters Series, before being referenced, from 2009 onwards, with the label we’re familiar with – the Barcelona Olympic tournament from 1992 was also added to the list. Therefore, the tournaments considered were:

  • The French Open starting from 1968.
  • The US Open from 1975 to 1977.
  • The 1992 Barcelona Olympic Games, which was rewarded with the same points as a Major.
  • The tournaments of Rome and Montecarlo, starting from 1970.
  • The Hamburg tournament from 1978 to 2009, when it was replaced by the Madrid Masters.
  • The Canadian Open from 1972 to 1975 and again in the 1978 season.
  • The Indianapolis and Boston tournaments from 1974 to 1977.
  • The Washington tournament from 1975 to 1977.
  • The Forest Hills tournament from 1982 to 1985.

In order to study the performance of every country in the aforementioned tournaments, four main aspects were evaluated:

  • The total aggregate points obtained, using a very simple scoring system: for the Majors, 2 points for a Grand Slam victory, 1 for a final, 0.5 for a semi, 0.25 for a quarter final; on the other hand, a point for a win in a 1000 or Masters Series or Super 9, 0.5 points for a final, 0.25 for a semifinal run.
  • The number of players who contributed to a nation’s total score.
  • The trend of the aggregate score, including a peak analysis.
  • The number of zeros scored by the leading nations.

Before proceeding with the analysis, it is necessary to proceed with some clarifications over the methodology used. Aggregate scores for each country were obtained considering currently existing nations, even if they didn’t exist at some point throughout the historical period included in the study. As an example, the points coming from tennis players from the former Soviet Union were included to the total sum of Russian points.

With regard to the dismembered countries, the main observation criterium was the player’s actual residence, or the role he held at the time within their own tennis federation. Using this judgement criteria, the scores of Jovanovic, Franulovic and Pilic were counted for Croatia, while Mecir scored his points for Slovakia. Finally, the so-called “naturalisations” of tennis players have been completely excluded, considering only the nation in which a player grew up – as such, Lendl’s points were attributed entirely to Czech Republic, Kriek and Pattison’s to South Africa, Mulligan and Bob Hewitt’s to Australia.

We also note that in the 1981 season 10.5 points were awarded, due to the fact that the final of the tournament in Monte Carlo could not be finished due to repeated rains, thus not awarding the title to either of the two finalists. To date, it is the only case of a draw in the history of open era tennis.

For those interested in further analyses, the link to the dataset can be found below:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1yPJRwVG5LyOEBvCNtK1mK5- 0Hihf36gZ / view? usp = sharing

Caveats are over, let’s now analyse the results.

GEOGRAPHICAL SCORE DISTRIBUTION

From a first look at the geographical distribution of the points, it emerges that 41 nations scored at least 0.25 points, with a total of 255 players included in this clay-oriented tennis ranking. The northern hemisphere dominates, with Spain, the United States, Sweden and the Czech Republic scoring between 30 and 140 points. We will see in the detail these scores, but we can anticipate that Argentina places fourth, not far from Sweden. In gray we can see all of the countries that have not obtained any point, as far as this surface is concerned.

The most important facet is to understand how many players have expressed the different tennis traditions that were capable of reaching at least a semi-final of an ATP1000 or a quarter-final of a slam on clay, be it red or green.

Total scores by number of players

If we consider the nations that have obtained a score higher than 5.75, the analysis is reduced to 19 nations whose scores are as follows:

CountryAggregated ScoreNumber of Players
Spain13928
USA71.2529
Sweden55.2516
Argentina48.519
Czechia33.7511
Switzerland29.755
France27.7521
Serbia25.53
Australia15.514
Austria16.254
Germany15.511
Romania14.55
Russia14.7511
Brazil135
Italy11.7511
Croatia118
Chile9.755
UK8.755
Netherlands63

In the graph below we can appreciate the aggregate total scores for each country, associated with the number of players who have expressed them:

Apart from the off-the-charts scores by Spain and the US, the French performance needs to be highlighted, since the Exagon has produced 21 players, for a total of 27.75 points, and is the second nation for number of scoreless years, with just 17 zeros during the 53 seasons observed, trailing only Spain with 5.

Argentine clay tennis also stands out with its 19 players, 48.5 points, and 21 scoreless seasons.

Russia, Germany, Italy and the Czech Republic all have produced 11 players but with significantly different scores, with Czechia pacing the rivals. Finally, among the tennis traditions that have expressed between 3 and 5 players, it is clear how Serbia and Switzerland stand out from the rest of the group, due to the results provided by Djokovic and Federer, respectively.

On page 2, how each country fared historically

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‘Super Confident’ Nick Kyrgios Admits Admiration for Medvedev Ahead Of Clash

Nick Kyrgios has had positive things to say about Daniil Medvedev ahead of their second round meeting in Montreal.

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Nick Kyrgios (@atptour - Twitter)

Nick Kyrgios has spoken highly of world number one Daniil Medvedev ahead of their second round clash in Montreal.

 

Kyrgios is in some of the best form in his career having reached the final of Wimbledon last month.

That has been followed up by a doubles title in Atlanta and a singles and doubles triumph in Washington.

Now the Australian is into the second round in Montreal after defeating Sebastian Baez 6-4 6-4.

Now Kyrgios takes on the ultimate challenge as he takes on world number one Daniil Medvedev who heads into the match in form himself having beaten Cameron Norrie to win the Los Cabos title.

Speaking ahead of the match the Australian admitted he was confident but has nothing but admiration for Medvedev’s game style, “I know I’ve got Medvedev next which kind of sucks,” Kyrgios told the Tennis Channel.

“I feel like against pretty much any player right now, I’d feel extremely confident. Obviously I feel confident going up against him, but we all know what he can produce. It’s going to be a good match for sure. I’m a bit tired but I’m gonna try and give him a good run.

“I’d like to play 95 per cent of the draw in the next round but if it’s anything like today, I know there’s going to be a lot of balls coming back and it’s going to be tough. A part of me wants the challenge, but a part of me knows it’s not going to be easy at all. I’m not gonna shy away from it, I’m going to do everything I can to recover and rest.

“But he’s a hell of a player and it’s incredible to see how he plays. He returns so far back, hits some crazy shots that we’ve never seen before. He does it his own way, he’s unorthodox and really special in the game. I love watching him play because he just looks so crazy out there, it’s like nothing I’ve ever seen.

“I love people who just play the way they want to play. He’s comfortable in his own skin so hopefully it will be two contrasting styles as well. Not going to get much different tennis from me, I’m going to serve massive and play big and try to dictate. If I do that well, usually it works.”

Kyrgios is hoping to have good results this week as well as next week in Cincinnati so he can be seeded for the last grand slam of the year at the US Open.

The duo have met on three occasions with Kyrgios leading the head-to-head 2-1 but it’s Medvedev who won their last meeting at the Australian Open in four sets.

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Bianca Andreescu survives thrilling match against Kasatkina in Toronto return

Bianca Andreescu reached the second round in her home tournament while Naomi Osaka and Emma Raducanu crashed out.

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(@Andreescu_Fans - Twitter)

The 2019 champion made her return three years after winning the title and reached the second round to the delight of the Canadian fans.

 

Bianca Andreescu is into the second round of the National Bank Open being hosted at Sobeys Stadium in Toronto, Ontario after beating the San Jose champion Daria Kasatkina in straight sets 7-6, 6-4.

Although the scoreline seemed pretty routine this match had everything with highs and lows for both players but the Toronto native managed to get through.

“She played really well, super consistent and I am so happy I had that mental toughness to get through in two sets and that was key for me.”

In the first set both players got off to a very nervous start as the first five games of the match were breaks of serve before Andreescu was able to secure the first hold of the match to take a 4-2 lead.

At 5-3 with the Russian serving the Canadian earned two set points but was denied by the number 11 seed and the next game broke the world number 53 to go back on serve at 5-5.

The Toronto native responded by breaking right back once again and served for the set for the second time but Kasatkina broke once more to force a tiebreaker.

The Russian found herself up 4-2 but lost the following two points and the Canadian fought back and managed to take the tiebreaker 7-5 and the first set 7-6 in one hour and 25 minutes.

Dealing with high blood pressure she was seen by the trainer and the doctor during the break between both sets and she was given medication to rectify the problem.

Once again holding serve seemed to be the issue as after the world number 53 held the opening service game of the second set she broke to take an early 2-0 lead.

Kasatkina responded by breaking right back and holding to even the set at 2-2 and broke once again using her powerful forehand on breakpoint to seal the break.

Again she failed to consolidate the break and the Canadian broke her right back and after consolidating the break broke again to take a 5-3 lead and a chance to serve out the match.

Andreescu wasn’t able to close it out as the number 11 seed broke right back but in the following game, the Canadian responded by winning the match on her opponent’s serve.

After the match in her post-match on-court interview, she was asked if she felt the exact same emotions she had back in 2019 and what she will remember from the match.

“I wished I enjoyed it a bit more and I was really looking forward to having that positive attitude that I always have.”

Andreescu will now face Alize Cornet on Wednesday after the Frenchwomen was able to beat another Frenchwomen Caroline Garica in a tough three-set match on Monday night.

A busy Tuesday in Toronto

It was a busy day in Toronto and here are some of the other results from day 2 at the National Bank Open.

Belinda Bencic the number 12 seed got by the Czech qualifier Tereza Martincova in straight sets 6-4, 6-2, and Naomi Osaka was forced to retire down 7-6, 3-0 against Kaia Kanepi due to a back injury.

Amanda Anisimova beat the Canadian wild card, Carol Zhao, in straight sets as well 6-3, 6-1, and Camila Giorgi, the defending champion, ousted the number nine seed Emma Raducanu also in straight sets 7-6, 6-2.

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Denis Shapovalov ousted by Alex De Minaur in Montreal

Denis Shapovalov and Andy Murray exited Montreal while Nick Kyrgios and Grigor Dimitrov advanced.

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Denis Shapovalov (@UniversTennis - Twitter)

The Canadian lost another first-round match on Tuesday after his match was suspended due to rain on Monday night.

 

Denis Shapovalov seems to be going through a very rough patch, he has one win in his last 10 matches and on Tuesday was bounced out of his home event by the Aussie Alex De Minaur in straight sets 7-5, 7-6.

The match which was originally scheduled for Monday night was suspended with De Minaur up 7-5 6-6 and at 3-3 in the second set tiebreak when the skies opened up.

19 hours later they were both back on Center Court for the fastest match of the day which last less than 10 minutes with the Canadian hitting a double fault and 3 consecutive unforced errors to end the match.

The first set was extremely tight and it was only at 5-5 that the Aussie was able to seal the crucial break and serve out the match. The same could be said for the second but the Toronto native was able to force a breaker.

De Minaur will now face Grigor Dimitrov on Wednesday after the Bulgarian beat the Canadian wildcard who was making his National Bank Open debut and a Montreal native Alexis Galarneau.

The number 15 seed was able to win in straight sets 6-4, 7-6 but in the second set had to come back from 5-2 to force the breaker and then win the match.

In other action, the number 12 seed Diego Schwartzman beat the Spaniard Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in three tight sets 1-6, 6-3, 6-4 in two hours and 23 minutes.

Taylor Fritz, the number 10 seed, sent Andy Murray packing in straight sets 6-1, 6-3 in the first match of the night session while Nick Krygios beat the Argentine Sebastien Baez 6-4, 6-4.

Gael Monfils to the delight of the French Canadian crowd on Grandstand needed three sets to beat another Spaniard Pedro Martinez 7-6, 3-6, 6-2 in two hours and 50 minutes.

Another Canadian Vasek Pospisil making his return to IGA Stadium was beaten by Tommy Paul 6-4, 6-4 and Pablo Carreno Busta beat the 11th seeded Italian Matteo Berrettini 6-3, 6-2.

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