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Winning Ugly: Mental Warfare in Tennis-Lessons from a Master (A Fireside book) [Paperback]

Brad Gilbert , Steve Jamison
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)

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Paperback 6.29  
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Book Description

1 May 1994 A Fireside book
The tennis classic from Olympic gold medalist and ESPN analyst Brad Gilbert, now featuring a new introduction with tips drawn from the strategies of Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, Serena Williams, Andy Murray, and more, to help you outthink and outplay your toughest opponents A former Olympic medalist and now one of ESPN's most respected analysts, Brad Gilbert shares his timeless tricks and tips, including "some real gems" "(Tennis "magazine) to help both recreational and professional players improve their game. In the new introduction to this third edition, Gilbert uses his inside access to analyze current stars such as Serena Williams and Rafael Nadal, showing readers how to beat better players without playing better tennis. Written with clarity and wit, this classic combat manual for the tennis court has become the bible of tennis instruction books for countless players worldwide.

Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Ltd; 1st Fireside Ed edition (1 May 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 067188400X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671884000
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 14.2 x 1.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (37 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 636,730 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


""Winning Ugly" is a totally new approach to getting more out of your tennis game. I wish it had been around when I was learning how to play."--Jim Courier

About the Author

Brad Gilbert, known as the Tour's 'Giant Killer' because of his ability to beat the superstars, is among the top fifteen players in all-time career winnings. He is an Olympic medallist and has represented the United States in Davis Cup play. Steve Jamison is a writer, television producer and host. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
One of the first lessons I learned when I turned pro in 1982 was how much of an edge could be gained before the match even got started. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Hi, I'm a tennis player and a tennis teacher from Italy, Rome. I've started to play at the age of 10 and I started to teach at 19 years old. I've had a very good teacher that taught me everything about technique and much things about mental tennis. I've a degree from the Italian Tennis Teacher Federation. I like my work and I'm also fond of tennis. For that reason I've read many books about these argument but this is the first book that simplifies what every tennis player should know: how to play your better tennis, in which moment is important to play "economic tennis" and how to stay inside the match from the beginning to the end are some example of what everybody should know. I've tried on the court everything Brad says and my tennis have had a sensible changing,and I can promise you if you'll try the results will be really positive ! I have applied the counsels of Brad also in the mental preparation of my students and also that students all talent and "no brain" have found their way to win. It looks incredible but is true ! I really think that Brad Gilbert is the reason because Andre Agassi is now unbeatable ! Put together the talent of Andre and the strategy of Brad and you've made the perfect tennis player. I've translated all the book in italian. I thought that could be a good idea ! It's a sin to lose Brad's book only because you can't speak english !
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just amazing... 25 Feb 2000
Well, I've bought this book because I'm a great admirer or Agassi, and I always knew of Gilbert's "dirty" game. And I cant tell you that you become and you really feel much stronger, mentally speaking when you enter the tennis court... And if you play all your tricks right, you'll be winning games, and enjoying it. Make no mistakes, this is NOT a book on dirty schemes and dirty tactics, just a manual on exploring your opponent's weaknesses in your advantage... you'll love it. I've offered one book to my best friend, who hates Agassi and Gilbert in favour of Sampras, ans even him says its one of the best books he read...
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Must have book if you play competitive tennis 12 Jan 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The best tennis book I have ever read. You won't get much advice from Gilbert on how to play strokes but you will find superb advice on how to win, how to prepare, how to play the important points and how to close out matches. If you play competitive tennis, buy this book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's summer, its hot and you still want to win 18 May 1998
By A Customer
If you want to win when its hot, sticky and the sun is beating down (or at any other time) you must possess the mental edge. This book is the key to opening the well of mental strength needed to push the physical body to do things not otherwise expected. What Brad Gilbert has done is tell everyone, at whatever level, how to make our minds better than our opponent's. He makes us understand that the eight inches between our ears is often the key to dealing with all the space on the court. Read this and believe it, then play your best tennis. THE BEST BOOK AROUND. At the 4th of July tournament, you will be glad you have Brad on your side.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An absolute must to enjoy the game 10 July 2000
By A Customer
This book did more for me in one sitting than all the books I have read about tennis.
In my short playing life -- 17 years, I have had problems with nervousness and how to handle it, how to close out matches,, how to think on court and strategise. I have read all the books I can lay my hands on -- even the "Inner Game of Tennis", but none comes even close in a brief and easy-to-read manner than Gilbert's , Winning Ugly. I received my copy a week ago and since then my game has zipped to a whole new level.
What I would love to see more of, is Gilbert's anecdotes from the tour and probably analysis of other matches other than his own and how the winners made it happen. I will surely buy the next edition
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting! 27 Jun 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I read Tim Gallwey's "Inner Game of Tennis" several years ago, and had focussed on the right brain aspects of tennis. Enjoying my tennis, but not winning much.

This book provides a really good balance. Perhaps winning doesn't really matter to you either, and you play just for fun. If so, Brad asks "Why do you keep the score then?"

One of his key points is that you need to hate making unforced errors. But the reason I make unforced errors is that I don't practise/play enough, and don't want to lob the ball over the net all the time.

All in all, a very enjoyable read. But I still prefer Gallwey!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Never too late to play tennis - and win!! 14 July 2010
By HJAiken
Easy to read, not written to make you feel 'not good enough' and loads of practical tips and advice to improve your tennis - whatever level you are. Don't think it's written to make you a Wimbledon Champ, but I guess if you work hard enough at the advice given - who knows?!! If you play tennis and want to know how to win when things aren't going the way they should be - this is the book for you - and me!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best tennis book ever 6 July 2010
By Imran
Having read many books on tennis, this is the ONE.

Brad Gilbert is a genius when it comes to 'life survival' skills. His career really represents that. His analysis on his peers is brilliant; I really enjoyed reading his analysis of McEnroe, Connors, Becker and others. His recommendation on how to react in certain situations, the best I've read.

If you have any interest in Tennis or just in being successful (in any profession); buy this book.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Sent as a gift.
Published 19 days ago by Mrs. V. Mcglade
1.0 out of 5 stars Never beat Lendl
Played Lendl 16 times and lost all of them. Could have done with his book then. Don't bother it's awful. Now if Lendl did something then sit up and listen to a true winner / great.
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
1.0 out of 5 stars Pretty average
Was pretty disappointed with book, he is obviously alot better in person. Anyone who played at a decent level in sport that was looking for some genuine insight in my opinion would... Read more
Published 2 months ago by gavin bourke
4.0 out of 5 stars Great tennis manual
Excellent guide to the mindset of Gilbert and his methods, if you are interested in tennis you want to read this.
Published 3 months ago by jonathan n hart
4.0 out of 5 stars Enterteinment and some gold nuggets
Boris Becker, Andre Agassi, Jimmy Connors... The players you know (or thought you knew) are used as examples by Brad Gilbert, to illustrate how a cunning tennis player can beat a... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Play tennis to win
Brads a star when it comes to winning, this book has helped change my game. No longer do I dream of a Fedderer backhand rather whatever works
Published 5 months ago by Nicholas Norton
5.0 out of 5 stars Winning Ugly.
Brilliant book! How to get inside your opponent's head.
How to beat a player who is better than you!
There are many ways to skin a cat.
Published 8 months ago by Paul Clancy
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book on how to develop your game plan
After reading this book you will gain some great tips on how to use your strength against your opponent's weaknesses.
Most of recreational players have no game plan at all. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Peter Dolinaj
4.0 out of 5 stars Controversial Tennis Coach.
A book about tennis with some interesting comments and anecdotes. Brad Gilbert always something different to say about tennis players and their behaviour .
Published 12 months ago by henry fabian Dr.
5.0 out of 5 stars Winning ugly
Very interesting book with lots of good points on how to handle matches and also on how to help your child cope with matches. I would recommend this to all plays.
Published 12 months ago by MISS R J STANLEY
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