The “Tennis Abides” blog has some great insights into the career of Gustavo Kuerten. Here are some excerpts.
Guga winning 3 slams, finishing 2000 at #1, and winning the Masters Cup by beating Sampras and Agassi on consecutive days to lock up #1 for 2000 more or less make him a lock to enter the International Tennis Hall of Fame next year. Even with Rafa’s domination on clay since 2005, Guga is among the 5 best clay court players in the Open Era. He also is at worst the second most successful tennis champion from South America.
His personality was evident in his play. His 5 set win at the 2001 French Open over Michael Russell cemented his popularity in Paris. His love of surfing seemed quite natural for the laid back Guga. His relationship with his now deceased younger brother was touching. It was easy to like Guga. His face painted fans were always entertaining as well. It is too bad that hip issues pushed him out of the top of tennis at a time when he seemed to be adapting his game to all surfaces.
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