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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 10, Issue 5 (August 1, 1935)


The high hopes of Australia for the Davis Cup and the English Championships have been dashed rudely to the ground, and the determined play of von Cramm and his team has brought Germany definitely to the front as a world tennis “menace.”

There is, however, another side to the question. The motto “Horses for Courses” has always carried some weight with tennis followers, but this year's play in Europe has clearly shown the necessity for the development of a “standard” court if any true gauging of world tennis leaders is to be arrived at and if there is to be any assurance that the Davis Cup is to be carried off by the best team.

Over two years ago Camille Malfroy stated his belief that von Cramm was the world's best player and the recent Wimbledon tourney showed how close this declaration was to the truth. On the grass courts he played magnificently, and it was not till he met Perry, who came to the contest flushed with success and playing at the very top of his form, that von Cramm's victorious march was arrested in the final of the world's tennis blue-ribbon contest. A month or so before on the hard courts of Germany von Cramm was unbeatable and the German team won from Crawford, Quist and McGrath, the right to meet America in the semi-finals of the Davis Cup. It is very unlikely that the same result would have eventuated if the match had been played on the softer court at Wimbledon. Certainly the Australians were even then showing signs of the staleness and of the disorganisation of their game caused by the changing over to harder courts, which culminated in their debacle at Wimbledon. But even so it is probable that, although von Cramm may have won both his singles, the Australians would have saved the game on courts similar to those they were used to. Crawford's defeat of Perry at Eastbourne revealed the Australian's true form.

It now appears certain that the Germans would defeat the American team in Germany and be defeated in turn by the English holders on the English courts. The point is, however, that a different result would almost as certainly have happened if all the matches had been played on the same type of court. It appears likely that the Germans would beat the English team if the match were to be played in Germany, and I personally still think that Australia would have been victorious this year if all the matches had been played at Sydney or Wimbledon.