Djokovic Taps Out Again, Sets Up Federer v. Nadal Monte Carlo Final
by Sean Randall | April 26th, 2008, 12:53 pm
  • 200 Comments

When the going gets tough, sometimes the tough and the not so tough quit. And that’s just what the not so tough Novak Djokovic did today, just as he has done before, hitting the eject button when things turned against him in a big match.

Today in the Monte Carlo semifinals, Djokovic retired with a breathing illness to Roger Federer after getting broken to go down 6-3, 3-2. The retirement follows a mysterious pattern of in-match withdrawals by the Serb, who pulled a similar act against Nadal at the French Open, Nadal at Wimbledon and even against Davydenko this year in Davis Cup.

And I feel confident in speaking for many tennis fans in saying that we are tired of this act.

You play to win. You don’t play to quit. If Novak’s looking to make fans and gain their respect, this isn’t how to do it.

In Novak’s defense, I understand he’s had a breathing problem, one that was serious enough to require surgery. So it’s there. That’s a fact. It’s been an issue. But Novak, what I cannot understand is if it’s that serious how come you don’t ever retire when you are winning? And why is it only against the top guys and at moments when you feel like the match is no longer within grasp that decide to wave the white flag?

I think it’s safe to say the guy has a game of a No. 1 player, but much like Richard Gasquet, his fate is going to be determined by what goes on between his ears. And right now he’s not right up there.

Sure there’s a physical component, but it’s seems to be more mental with Novak because he feels it more in the tougher times. And his ego maybe does get the best of him.

Part of being a great tennis player is being a great fighter. And Novak really hasn’t shown much of that fighting spirit up to this point in his career. Even today, if this guy needed to draw some inspiration to continue and possibly come back – it wasn’t like he was playing bad either! – all he needed to do was to look across at the net at Federer who could have easily mailed it in when in the second round Ruben Ramirez-Hidalgo had him by the throat up 5-1 in the third set. To his credit Federer didn’t quit and now look how nicely it’s paid off. Federer didn’t get to No. 1, didn’t win 12 Slams, by being a great frontrunner. There’s more to it.

Novak is going to need to learn that. And last I checked – and I’m no tennis historian – but I don’t recall too man guys with a history of retirements ever reaching the No. 1 ranking. Marcelo Rios had a lot of injuries, so did Gustavo Kuerten. Andy Roddick had issues early in his career, but he’s overcome them. And has Roger Federer ever retired from a match? I can’t remember.

So Novak, you can’t retire your way to No. 1. It’s not going to happen that way. Few doubt your game, but what’s going on between your ears is another matter. You have a lot of money now, hire a psychologist or two and a good trainer and get it worked out in your head. And stop sapping your strength by bouncing the ball a thousand times (I get dizzy also just watching that!), re-adjusting your hat and doing imitations. Save your energy for actual play.

(Imitating Novak would be easy. Just bend over in exhaustion, take a few deep breaths, fall to your knees a few times, look distressed and then signal to the chair umpire. That’s Novak. You don’t even need to do the ball bounce routine.)

As for the match, Federer continued his high level he had set from his Nalbandian win. He looked that good, that impressive. (Did Fed really yell at Novak’s parents telling them to “Shut up” as the announced hinted? If so that was great!). But will it be enough tomorrow against Nadal? Will he continue on this revenge tour? Probably not. I have to stick with Nadal in that one.

I think it will help Federer in getting such a quick match today after a few three setters this week, but this is Nadal’s surface, Nadal’s time of year. He’s built for clay supremacy. And of course Nadal’s got Fed’s number, especially on clay.

Federer, though, I think is playing at a level now where if Nadal is off his game the Swiss can take it. And he’ll be playing without a lot of pressure. But Roger’s going to have to play impeccably and aggressively. Attacking when it’s right and even using that new drop shot of his.

I guess the one bright side of Novak’s retirement is that we do get the Federer-Nadal matchup. And we are assured no one’s going to hit the eject button during tomorrow’s final.


Also Check Out:
Federer Reverses Monte Carlo Decision, Will Take On Nadal
Rafael Nadal: I Have Amazing Feelings When I Play Monte Carlo [Video]
Djokovic Withdraws From Monte Carlo
Novak Djokovic Was A Busy Man After Winning Monte Carlo [Video]
Rafael Nadal, Girlfriend Xisca Head to Monte Carlo [Video]

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200 Comments for Djokovic Taps Out Again, Sets Up Federer v. Nadal Monte Carlo Final

Paul Says:

Sean, you’re right on the money.

Djokovic went through a bit of a skid after the Australian Open, too. He’s still very young, but it may be hard for him to mature out of this problem in the relatively brief time he has left as a pro.


angel Says:

JOKEBITCH SHOULD BE REALLY ASHAMED OF HIMSELF. HE ALWAYS DOES THE SAME WHEN THINGS DON’T GO HIS WAY HE CALLS THE TRAINER AFTER LOSING A SET AND RETIRES WHEN HE SEES HE HAS NOT CHANCE TO COME BACK IN THE MATCH. THIS GUY IS PATHETIC.


Voicemale1 Says:

And once again, we have a Djokovic retirement. By my count, this is the 3rd high-profile ATP Tour Match retirement since he came onto the tour: 2006 French 4th Round vs. Nadal (saying in his press conference that day how in control of the match he thought he was, down 2 sets to love before packing it in LOL); 2007 Wimbledon Semi vs. Nadal (supposedly a blister); and now today vs. Federer (a vague unexplained “breathing” issue). All these retirements to players ranked above him. Hmm.

When I think about Sampras playing Agassi in the 2000 AO Semi with a torn groin muscle – he finished the match (not to mention his entire run at 2000 Wimby on an inflamed shin); when I think of Nadal laying on the ground at last years US Open in agony with tendenitis against Ferrer, yet he finished the match; when I think of Federer playing Canas at IW last year with blisters on both feet – he finished the match too. And countless other examples. Retiring once or so? Yeah, OK – I get that. But Djokovic is making retiring in matches a habit – and not just any match, like a first rounder. He quits when the stakes are highest – and always when he’s losing. Somebody needs to tell him to Man Up – take the loss no matter what the issue (unless you’re literally gonna DIE), and come back to live & fight another day. You can bet the other guys on the tour were howling watching Novak throw in the towel – again.

Quitting is for wusses. And no mater what he says, the REAL reason he quits is becoming obvious: he doesn’t want the outright loss to blemish his record, ESPECIALLY against Federer or Nadal, since his PR Narrative is that he’s the real #1 Player in the world. It’s tough to buy the spin if he loses outright to these guys. He wants the “well, I had to quit or else I would have won” excuse or asterisk next to these losses.


Dr. Death Says:

Allow me to repeat from another string since we have a new one:

So I woke up for this? Djo retires again? Is there a doctor in the house? (Angel – love “Jokebitch” but a bit cruel don’t you think?)

From Fox Tennis:

“From the start I didn’t feel so great,” Djokovic said, complaining of dizziness and a sore throat.

“I just couldn’t get enough energy back after each point,” he said. “I feel dizziness a little bit in the last three days. I don’t know. Doctor in the tournament couldn’t give me the right diagnosis. I’ll check as soon as possible.”

So let’s see here. He felt ill for three days, but managed to win the quarterfinals, and then really felt this coming on when he was losing to Fed. In my professional opinion (1) he will live! and (2)

Nullus guttus

Mononucleosis

Take two aspirin and see the Disciplinary Committee in the morning.


ankur.h2 Says:

I think that djokovic’s rise has shown all of us how we never realized the geniuneness and respect that both federer and nadal seem to possess .its only now that an ass like djokovic is at the 3rd
spot that we understand the true greatness of nadal and federer .Djokovic is a coward and i would put my money on baghdatis and murray to eventually become the best players of this gen-next (excluding nadal of course)


jane Says:

“And his ego maybe does get the best of him.”

Or if not his ego, his nerves. When Novak gets behind, is it his ego or nerves that make him pant? I don’t know obviously; none of us do. But I think that sometimes, for all of Novak’s bravado, there’s a somewhat less confident young guy underneath. I could very well be wrong. But it is often the case. It’s also very well documented that anxiety leads to shortness of breath and dizziness.

Sean you’re right about this – he should hire a psychologist and talk some of this out. Get away from his Dad and Mom (especially), who I think put added pressure on him, and talk to a professional. Why not? It can’t hurt.

I’d speculate, too, that there is a constitutional element – if you look at lanky guys like Djokovic, Davydenko & Murray, they all seem a little more susceptible to flaking out or injury. Again, I might be way off, but one can only speculate.

I’d agree that Djokovic will not reach number 1 if he doesn’t deal with these issues. He needs to deal with losses and/or being behind. Play things out Novak; there’s no shame in losing to Roger!!

I’ll be rooting for him still, anyhow.

As for tomorrow’s final, it’s a toss up – of course this is Rafa’s surface and all that, but this is Federer’s chance for *major* revenge, and even better, redemption. And nobody wants to be number 1 more, I don’t think.

With the year we’ve had, Roger’ll probably win the French, Rafa (or maybe a surprise – Murray, Gasquet, Tsonga Djok?) will take Wimbledon, and Roddick will win the USO.

The Olympic gold medal? Someone who can stand smog and political turmoil.


Dr. Death Says:

Jane – as to the Olympics – there will be no smog and no political turmoil. The Security Bureau guarantees it.

As to Djo, you are a kind person. Would you like to buy shares in one of my bridges (Beijing – Singapore is quite popular at the moment).


jane Says:

Ha-ha Dr. Death – sorry, I’m not one for high stakes investments. Maybe that’s why I empathize with the Djoker. I knew everyone would crap all over him, and fair enough. But I like the guy: his game and his personality. It’s just innate, for whatever reason.

Cheers


Maja Says:

Angel you’re sick – you just copied your comment full of hate from another place to this one – that is sick!


Maja Says:

Jane you’re mature and great person and that’s the kind of fan every player could wish for. It’s not some virtue to root for a player only at his best… Djokovic played great today, I think that this is even his best play ever but his retirement is something we don’t have to support. Anyway, nobody can deny how incredible player he is.


Susan Says:

It’s scary how predictable he is. As soon as he lost the first set I knew it was trainer time. Then, of course, once he was broken in the second set I knew it was match over.

For someone so in love with himself, he sure is chicken-sh–!!!

Now, I’m sure all the others know that all they have to do is hang in a match, break him from time to time and he’s history.

Someone, please next time bring an oxygen mask!!


Seth Says:

As a Fed fan, the more I see of Djoko – what with his off-putting arrogance, the no-class behavior of his entourage, and his lame penchant for pulling the plug when he’s down – the more I admire and respect Rafael Nadal as a worthy and sportsmanlike rival to Federer. Rafa has clearly never been scared of Fed, yet he’s still managed to show him a great deal of respect.

Rafa = class, plus, the kid’s game is growing on me.


calgal Says:

Right on target!!! And the fans are so creative in the new nicknames for Djoker the Choker, Chokevitch, Djokoquits, Djokobitch….Wow! Does Federer do imitations??? Nah, too much class to laugh at another player. But I do love the suggestion herein for one.


Tennis Fan Says:

Djokovic should lose all ATP points for this tournament and forego any cash earnings. He should also be fined … and the penalties should rise with each recurrence going forward. If this is what a future champion is made of … I’m going back to watching table tennis!


Maja Says:

The reactions of Djokovic’s haters are as much predictable as it is Djokovic’s retirement…I don’t like he retired aswell but this comment of yours (all of you with insulting comments) are not so classy so you are the last persons who should judge to Djokovic. He’s great player besides all of his personal issues, so what gives you right not to respect him for his great play. He played so great today and Federer wouldn’t win easily at all, Djoko’s retirement made it easy, but they both played proffesionally. Besides, I don’t believe he was so sick that he couldn’t play, but still – how can we know and who are we to judge how he feels????? That’s something only God could know for sure,


Boom Boom Says:

“And I feel confident in speaking for many tennis fans in saying that we are tired of this act.”

I agree.

“But Novak, what I cannot understand is if it’s that serious how come you don’t ever retire when you are winning?”

He was winning against Davydenko 2:1 (Davis Cup) when he retired. He wasn’t losing against Wawrinka when he retired 6-6.

“Part of being a great tennis player is being a great fighter. And Novak really hasn’t shown much of that fighting spirit up to this point in his career.”

Fighting spirit? You obviously haven’t seen him against Baghdatis at Wimbledon. And what about the match against Stepanek at US Open? Or against Federer if you want – In Montreal he was down a break and Fed was serving for the 1 set – Novak won the set. He lost the second set 2-6 but he won the match. Melbourne had a similar scenario.
BTW Against Nadal at Wimbledon he won the first set without actually moving.

Serving 3 consecutive aces to save 3 break points in a 3rd set (against Fish) – mentally fragile?

The best tie-break record in top 30 or 50 or something like that. (4-2 against Fed) – mentally fragile?

9-3 in finals – that’s 75%. (Federer 76%, Nadal 74%) – big match player or mentally fragile?

What you all seem to forget that he is only 20 years old and going up too fast – way too fast. The only player in history to be voted the most improved player for two consecutive years and on the way win it for the 3rd consecutive time! That’s not one but three breakthrough years! Those are giant leaps. Of course his body can’t keep up! But he is not fragile, just too talented.


Tennis Fan Says:

… the fine should be equal to today’s gate receipts so that he can refund all those people that payed to see that sorry display or sportsmanship ….


Zola Says:

Sean, great great post, but please, I beg you no predictions for RAfa.

This is what Djoko said:

**”It’s not worth it,” Djokovic said. “I’m just 20 years old. Still a lot of time, a lot of tournaments to come.”***
http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/tennis/news/story?id=3368768

It is not worth it!

Imagine all those people who paid to watch that match and he says it is not worth it. I am hardly a federer fan, but if he could play with mono, sweating like crazy and still finish his semi-final match in AO, giving Novak’s parents the headlines…..Novak could play three more games and let the match finish.

where is ATP? Why Davydenko was fined for “lack of effort” when he could not serve, and here is a guy who actually puts it to words” It is not worth it” and doesn’t get fined?


Zola Says:

20 years is not young for a tennis player. Please don’t expect kindergarten behavior from a guy who wins more than a million dollars in a grand slam!

Rafa was 17 when he first beat Fed. barely 19 when won his first GS. Andy Murray, GAsquet, Monfils, Berdych, Del Potro, Gulbis,…that are all in the same age range.They all behave sensibly.

If Novak is still a baby , he should not play professional tennis.


Zola Says:

well, sorry for triple post. last one I promise.

I don’t think anyone denies that Djoko has a great game and that he is very talented. What I don’t like is his unbalanced attitude. I also agree( I think I wrote it after his retirement in DC) that his breathing problem is more of a nervous reaction. He probably gets too tight when he finds himself in undesired situations.Because he has been programmed by his parents that he should be No 1 sooner than later. But he needs to learn to overcome this rather than quit a semi final match ( for the third time?)

I think ATP should follow this and make sure than players can not retire at their pleasure. At least they should not be able to collect the money for that round unless the seriousness of their condition is confirmed by an ATP doctor.

The other point is that as critical I am of Djoko ( not a fan at all), but I also don’t like the name-calling and insults I see in some posts. It is not right and it also clouds the fair criticism that most of people present here.


nikcap Says:

Without failure there can be no learning, without learning there can be no growth, without growth there can be no victory. Djoko has to walk the painful walk of loss on the path to victory. There is no other map. Fear of loss and ultimate fear of success can’t be overcome by opting out.


fedfan Says:

another point to remember. What about Serena. Do you remember when she was injured and continued to play and ultimately managed to win against Hantuchova I believe in Wimby 2007…that’s determination.

I do understand if Novak really can’t breath.

What some of you need to understand is not that he loses and quits because of feeling ill. Hi is feeling ill so that he starts to lose and then decides to quit.


Voicemale1 Says:

Boom Boom:

Glad you brought up this point about Djokovic serving 3 aces to Fish in the IW Final’s opening game of the third set. This game is often cited to me as THE example of what a weapon his Brilliant Serve is. I was there for that match and I wonder if you can answer a question that’s been puzzling me about this vaunted serve of his:

If his serve is so brilliant that the 3rd Set Game 1 is so often cited as proof of it – where was that Brilliant Serve in the SECOND set of that very same match against Fish? Djokovic had the Championship on his racquet serving at 5-3 in the 2nd Set, and promptly got broken. But wait..after Fish holds to 5-all, Djokovic’s Brilliant Serve GETS BROKEN AGAIN to trail 5-6, then he LOSES the set 7-5. So for as much as I gotta listen to the 3rd Set Game 1 as proof this guys serve is being so awesome, I sure as hell would like someone to tell me where the hell it went when he lost it TWICE in the same set. That he even needed a 3rd set speaks to a marked mental wobbliness. And his cause in that 3rd Set was helped considerably when Fish manged to get only 22% of his first serves in play when serving in his first two serve games. For as much praise as you give him here, I sure would hope a guy ranked in the Top 5 in the world could manage to break serve when his opponent is hititng second serves 78% of the time. Sheesh!!


Dr. Death Says:

Zola returns – did u get my back hand info I posted some time ago?

All of the kind souls who have so much sympathy for Djokovic make me feel really bad. I will have a think on this. Thank you for showing me the bright side.


TennisGuy Says:

“And of course Nadal’s got Fed’s number, especially on clay.”

*Nadal has Federer’s number on clay* is more accurate. Why embellish it?

Also – when was the last time Federer retired from a match? He finishes what he starts, even if the situation looks bleak & a loss inevitable. Same thing with Nadal.


raine Says:

I remember Serena from the YEC in ’04 against Pova. Serena was crushing her in the 3rd set and then with one swing during her service motion severely injured an abdominal muscle. Serena stood up and walked from one end of the court to the other until the match was over.

All of the truly great players have matches where they lost while sick/hurt/injured, but they suck it up, and play the match through to completion. Somebody needs to give Djoko the memo.


Zola Says:

Dr. Death,
I experienced some not very good personal moments and haven’t been posting a lot. But I did see your backhand message ( Iwas during the good moments at that time, very jolly!). that’s actually a great tip and I am going to try it. Actually a pro told me the same thing. To get under the ball and move up.
I also appreciate the advice about the muscle memory. I will try to play at least once a week under a pro supervison, so that I don’t get the bad habits.

***All of the kind souls who have so much sympathy for Djokovic make me feel really bad.***

well, I am not one of those kind souls. No sympathy for Novak from me. I thik he should have played the remaining 3 sets.
I think Jane qualifies though. She is the ultimate fair and nice person.


TD (Tam) Says:

quote- “Part of being a great tennis player is being a great fighter.”

It makes you appreciate players like Hewitt and Roddick all the more doesn’t it? They take their lumps but they still fight on. How about Nadal’s valiant effort at the US Open last year when he went down to the ground in pain but still played on? Even Federer played through his illness at the Australian Open.

This is what becomes a world number one player. Djokovic simply does not have the character to become world number one yet if ever.

Djokovic’s parents also reflect very badly on him but I am not surprised that Sean Randall has not criticized Federer for hissing at Novak’s parents like a snake, no doubt he thought that was a heroic gesture on Roger’s part.


Dr. Death Says:

Zola,

Good idea on the pro especially if you have a good TEACHING pro. The little fine tuning (arm fully extended, where the racquet head finishes) all help build the shot and there is no way we can do that without help.

As to the not so good personal moments, hang in there. Buddha says it all goes away.

My old colonel was fond of – it is always darkest before the dawn. Of course, I like the dark so I am always up before sunrise.


Here we go again « Tennisbloggen.net Says:

[...] pusteproblem. Det rimer ikke helt for meg, og det er ikke første gang at noe slikt skjer. Ikke for skribenten på tennis-x.com [...]


rogerstwinsister Says:

Sean, do you post on Tennis.com blog? I’m sure you do, because a few of your paragraphs above are verbatim from there. If you don’t, then you’re plagiarizing.


Maja Says:

“I haven’t been feeling well for three days and I’ve been waking up with a sore throat,” said Australian Open champion Djokovic.

“I thought it was nothing serious but against the best player in the world you have to be able to run down a lot more balls and need more energy which I didn’t have. I was feeling dizzy and I didn’t want to risk anything.”
(From Independent online)

Altought it looked uncovincing for me that he retired because of illnes, now when I think that he barely once succeeded to hit the first serve and that he had 15 unforced errors (which happens very rare to him) – illness is the only thing which sounds convincing for that mistakes he rarely do.


Skorocel Says:

Well, first of all, congrats to Roger for beating the odds and reaching the final! Who would’ve thought he will be playing Nadal on Sunday after seeing that struggle against Hidalgo-Ramirez (not to even think he will beat Nalby & Djoker)? But, the guy fought back – and that’s what champions are made of, isn’t it?

As for Djoker, well, I’m not quite sure if he’s got that champion’s HEART yet… Don’t get me wrong, he’s a champion already (after all, it’s only 3 months since he won his first GS title, isn’t it?), but if he wants to be called himself a TRUE champion, he’s got to react to adversities – and one of them being less than 100 % fit… I mean, it’s OK when you retire once or twice, but this guy (despite being only 20) has already a HISTORY of retirements behind him… The truth is – what’s once done can’t be undone, and only he himself knows whether that injury/breathing problems/dizziness/whatever were serious enough to say “it’s not worth it”, but frankly, if Fed or Sampras can play (and win) with mono or stomach pains & vomiting, then why shouldn’t he AT LEAST finish that match? As far as I know, Fed has NEVER lost a match by retirement or by giving his opponent a walkover – and that says something… Surely, the guy can say he’s pretty lucky to be void of any serious injuries (if we don’t count those 2 which occured in the autumn of 2005 and 2006, that is), but that’s not to say he’s played all of his matches being 100 % fit… Just think of that TMC 2005 final vs Nalby – he played that one virtually on one leg, yet it was still “worth” for him to try… But with Djoker, I’m not quite sure what’s “worth” for him to try – especially after seeing him retiring in a SW19 semifinal…

Now onto the match itself… Frankly, when I compare it to yesterday’s encounter between Fed and Nalby, this one certainly wasn’t that good… There were maybe a couple of rallies here and there which were quite interesting, but overall, it wasn’t exactly a spectacular match in my opinion (but then again, the same can be said about their recent meetings in AO 2008 and USO 2007)… I’ve actually read on a certain Swiss website that there were even some boos from the crowd (who simply wanted to see more from the two players), though as far as I remember, the only boos which I heard were those which came after Djoker’s announced his retirement…

As for Fed, well, on one hand, he played pretty well (especially hitting some top-notch forehands), while still keeping a low number of UEs, but on the other hand, some of his shots (like those smashes and drive volleys which grendel mentioned) could’ve been executed better, so Roger better be wary of this when playing that Spaniard tomorrow! But anyway, even though his 1st serve pct. could have been a bit higher, he’s still won around 82 % of the rallies when that 1st serve came in, and that’s quite impressive – especially when we consider that there was Djoker (in my opinion the best returner currently on the tour) standing on the other side of the net…

Djoker was definitely a bit off today (missing his forehand a lot), but it wasn’t like he’s been playing a complete cr.p either… Some of his shots (especially those aggressive returns) were exceptional, and had he broke the Swiss in that 5th game of the 1st set (where Fed saved one of those BPs with a lucky shot which clipped the net), who knows what would’ve happened?

Re: tomorrow’s final, well, I’m not expecting any miracles from the Swiss… Though it’s quite unusual to say this about him, but the fact is – he’s already surpassed the expectations which I had for him in this tourney, and everything else will be simply a bonus… Can he beat the Spaniard on clay? Surely, he CAN! It’s maybe true that Nadal wasn’t as fresh in that Hamburg 2007 final as he was 3 weeks before in MC (where he beat Fed 6:4 twice), but it’s NOT like he’s decided to tank that match in Germany either, is it? ARE YOU LISTENING HERE, DJOKER?

The key for Fed will be his determination… If he really wants the title, then we’ll see him play the way he did in that Rome 2006 final (which, for me, was his best clay-court match ever), but if he decides to just play with a “let’s see what happens” type of attitude (like last year), then I really can’t see him even troubling the Spaniard – even if Nadal had an extra-off-day…

P.S. Can someone of you guys tell me what was exactly the reason for Fed to shout at Djoker’s parents? Did they disturb him by making some screams or what? As far as I remember, I didn’t see anything like that, but I certainly remember one idiot whistling literally through the entire Fed vs Nalby match yesterday…


rogerstwinsister Says:

Djoko served, and the ball was called out even though it clipped the line. Fed walked over and pointed out that the ball was in so the point should be replayed. At the same time, Djoko’s parents were yipping at either the ump or Fed, and Fed said, “Be quiet, ok?”


noman Says:

djokovic must see gonzalez and massu at the olympics in 2004. maybe he could learn something


sensationalsafin Says:

Djokovic’s actions are tainting the sport. I think it’s bad that Davydenko retired in the Estoril final, but luckily that’s just Estoril. Years from now, when people are going to be looking up scores and whatnot (freaks like me :P), they’re going to see number 3 retired against number 2 at Wimbledon, then against number 1 here. I mean these are huge tournaments and it’s the semifinals!!!

People are criticizing Federer for PLAYING wtih mono. Yet he’s completed every match he’s been in. Sampras played his whole career with that disease that made his stamina low. Yet how many 5 setters did he will his way to victory?

In 2005 I think it was, Agassi was terribly injured in the first round of the French when he lost in 5 sets to I forget who. Still, he couldn’t move but he let his opponent close him out.

Gasquet and Baghdatis happened to cramp in the same USO in 2006. Gasquet is generally a bad example but in that case both players gave it their all to the very end and they put up one hell of a fight. For all his talk, Djokovic isn’t showing he should be number 1. Who wants to see number 1 retire from half his matches?

Some of you guys mention last year’s Hamburg match. How ugly is it to see a 6-0 third set between 1 and 2? A hell of a lot less uglier than seeing a ret. at the end of the score! Nadal still fought as much as he could. Same thing in Chennai this year when he was dead tired against Youzhny. He could’ve retired, but he still tried. Damnit Djokovic, and I really liked you, too.


jane Says:

Maja,

Take heart; don’t worry about defending Novak too much. People will think what they think. Some wise person once said, “it is what it is.” Thanks for the kind words above b.t.w.

You believe that Novak is truly a great player (he’s proven that – just read Boom Boom’s post above) who’s young and has some things to learn &/or some issues to work on, so stick with that. Seems pretty level-headed to me.

There are literally hundreds of great players on the ATP tour, all of them different, from different backgrounds & circumstances, and therefore with the full gamut of strengths, weaknesses and so on (kind of like us hey?). There’s no reason to latch onto one or vilify another, but that’s the way with sports: pick a team or a player and go with it.

More-and-more I’m just enjoying the game.


jane Says:

No, I don’t write for Hallmark, but ugh, it sounds like it doesn’t it? LOL.

Zen Tennis, call it that. ;-)


Skorocel Says:

To rogerstwinsister:

Thanks for the explanation. I just couldn’t hold my laugh when I saw how promptly Roger put these 2 in their place :) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pjEwO2FnbmQ


Sean Randall Says:

sensationalsafin, good point. Fed played with mono at the Australian Open. Djokovic can’t suck it up and play three more games against Fed today.

Skorocel, agreed. At least finish the match!

Maja, why doesn’t Djoko ever retire when he’s ahead? Surely this illness doesn’t only appear when he’s losing to top guys?

Rogerstwin, sorry. I don’t post on tennis.com or anywhere else. But I’d love to see what I copied.

TD, if the circumstances were diff I would criticize Fed for yelling at Djoko’s parents. But not here. Not when those same parents talk crap about Fed. And not when their son is about to throw in the towel. I applaud Fed for that!

Boom Boom, he retired against Davy – if i remember – only after he failed to close out the match, then lost the fourth, then quit. Poor effort.


Boom Boom Says:

-Voicemale1

You are missing the point.

It’s not about his serve. It called guts. It’s called clutch serving.

Using your logic you could also prove that even Federer is mentally fragile. I even mentioned those examples (matches against Djokovic).

Even in this match when Novak faced a break point and his first serve wasn’t working he served an ace on the second serve- right on the line. Try to find an interview with Moya – after their last match I believe. Novak did the same thing and Moya said that that’s the quality of a champion and that’s why he will be no.1.

Back to your example. Yes he lost a set but he didn’t lose a match. When it mattered the most he was stable. Maybe he was lucky, maybe he was brave. But the point is you cant’t serve THREE consecutive aces when your legs are shaking. (Remember Ana Ivanovic against Henin at RG. She was shaking and couldn’t even toss the ball. It was not about the serve. It was the brain.)

Actally, I can’t think of another similar example when he didn’t manage to close the match. So it happened once, maybe five times, who knows. The point is it it doesn’t happen often and he actually won that match.

For some reason you addressed only that example and completely ignored other examples that I mentioned. Also what does MF’s second serve percentage have to do with anything?

Ok, what is the difference between those examples?
The tie-break record and finals record show a trend. A rule. It’s not some break point from some match – it’s his entire career. It’s still a short career but it’s a huge sample. Dozens and dozens of matches. He is what you call a big point and a big match player.

Somebody was inspired to even make a video about it.

Big points. Big matches.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=ez7cSEr2nsI

Did you see Federer against Fish. He looked like he didn’t care. At all.
Did you see him against Hidalgo in the third set before the poor guy started to shake. Fed was playing like an angry 15 year old kid. At one point the local comentator even said: Calm down for gods sake! Federer was even swearing out loud.
When he was Novak’s age he used to break rackets and kick them over the court.

Here’s an intersting video. You can see Federer crying like a baby after a loss to Henman. He was 20.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=w8QDlcFHA4o

So, would you say (using your logic) that Federer is a wuss, a crybaby, immature and mentally unstable. No. How many times did you see that happen? Almost never. Those are exceptions.


Dr. Death Says:

Jane

Another wise person said (to paraphrase) “the poor huckleberry. His heart wasn’t strong enough.”


y0s3v Says:

The way I put it is very simple, when Federer is playing like Federer, we are going to see a lot of tennis players retire, Djokovic is only one amongst many that will.


Djokovic is a loser Says:

I bet Djokovic would not have quit if he was in a winning position. Down a set and a break, did he finish up the match like a man? No. He is quitter who has no qualms quitting when the match is not going his way. This is hardly the first time he has done it. He has done this time and again. Nor will this be the last time he quits. He was up a break just a few games before he quit. How come his medical problems were not as bad then? If the medical problems were as bad the whole week as he claims it was, then how come he blanked Murray and basically did not lose a single set the whole tournament and was dominant until this match against Federer. This proves that he is a fair-weather player — he is fine and dandy when he is winning, but problems creep up suddenly and out of nowhere when he is losing. He could not take a loss like a man. Djokovic is a sissy. He should wear a skirt and join the WTA: being a drama queen, he will feel at home and fit right in.


sensationalsafin Says:

Federer was crying in that match against Henman because he lost in Basel, his hometown tourny. It meant a lot to him and he was ashamed of himself for not being able to do more. He was mad he didn’t fight enough… wow, maybe Djokovic should cry after some matches then.

Against Fish, yeah, Federer didn’t look like he cared or tried or anything. But he still finished the match. And Federer didn’t make any excuses. It was his fans that said it was the mono, he claimed he was outplayed.

Again, Federer may have acted like a 2 year in the Hidalgo match, he still won. He still hung tough and came back after a huge deficit. Djokovic is a pansy. Simple as that.


Boom Boom Says:

-Sean Randall

Davydenko-Djokovic

No, he retired right after the 3 set. He was told not to play but it was his decision to go on the court. He thought he could get it done in three sets. It was evident right from the begining end especially in the 3rd set when he was a break up that he wanted to keep the points as short as possible.


Zola Says:

Boom Boom,

those videos that you have posted do not justify Djoko’s retirement from a semi final for the third time with the excuse of ” It was not worth it!”.

So what if Federer cried? Did he take the win away fron Henman? He was man enough to finish the match.

or he didn’t care against Fish? That’s your judgement. I think he knew he was getting back to his game and a bump like that should not have disheartened him. Still, he played and lost badly and everyone teased him and talked about him slumping and losing No 1, etc. He was again man enough to not to retire with a lame excuse.

was Djoko man enough to stay for 3 more games and finish the match today? you tell me.


Zola Says:

Dr. Death,
thanks for the words of wisdom. I will remember them. I don’t know if there is any dawn after this, but I will certainly look for it.


Federer Says:

A HONEST PIECE OF WRITING, IN MY OPENION. I WAS SEARCHING THE INTERNET CRAZILY TO FIND SOMETHING HONEST ABOUT THAT MATCH. MANY TEENAGE PEOPLE MAKE STUPID MISTAKES AND THEY SHOULD BE FORGIVEN AND LET’S ONE MORE TIME COUNT THE 20 YEAR OLD TENNIS PLAYER AS A TEENAGE ADN FORGIVE HIM…OH, WAIT A SECOND…LET’S PRETEND HIS ANNOYING PARENT ARE ALSO TEENAGERS AND FORGET THEM…


Boom Boom Says:

-Zola

Did you read the whole post?

I put the first video there to illustrate the point that he is a big point player. I was replying to a post.

With the second video I just wanted to show his reaction that can be considered an exception. The poster Voicemale1 made some elementary logic thinking errors. I just wanted to make it easier for him to understand.

That has nothing to do with Novak’s retirement. And there is nothing wrong with Roger’s crying.


Ryan Says:

Djokobitch is a born pussy…..Once he knows that he is getting his ass whooped he quits.For all the trash talking that he and his family did they deserved this loss and hopefully many more to come…..from the king that rose from the dead.Looking at this wimp and his family, we have to appreciate nadal and his uncle for displaying a lot of class after everything that nadal has been through including king of clay getting bagelled by fed in his own surface.I believe fed is going to kick his ass even in the slams including hardcourts…..so its better if he can plan more retirements even before the match starts….


Von Says:

jane:

“There’s no reason to latch onto one or vilify another, but that’s the way with sports: pick a team or a player and go with it.”

Albeit, I’m not a Djokovic fan, but I’m amazed at the posts from the ‘ex’ Djokovic fans. WOW, I was killed for making any comments by these ‘ex-fans’ concerning Djoko’s AO behavior. I’m sure you see their posts today. Latching onto one and vilipending another is the only way these posters can fit in. Or Didn’t you know that already? Go with the tide. That little child who wants to fit in, is just dormant, but surfaces on these ocasions. Welcome to the world of the vilipenders/vilifiers. I’ve been accused of my drip, drip, venom regarding Federer, but I can truly say, that’s multiplied to the 10th exponent coming from Fed fans when another player just steps out of the box, or just for a smidgen, strays away from what is supposed to be protocol, or in their minds, not so ‘classy behavior’.

I don’t buy the argument that Fed was justified in his outburst toward Djoko’s parents. Who knows, this could have upset Djoko who got broken immediately after. The mind/brain is a very fragile organ, which can go haywire for even hearing, as much as an unsavoury comment. I know if someone spoke to my parents in that manner, I would become upset and totally shaking from hurt/anger. They are not children.

Skorocel, my friend, I’m sorry but I don’t think it was something to be laughing about. Fed was being a bully. This is a No.1 player, who is dubbed as “classy”, but cannot control his tongue. My God, when I think of the horrible attacks on other players it makes me sick to see how this guy’s behavior is adored, justified and rationalized. Who said life was fair.

I still remember those awful headlines regarding Roddick and the cruel posts emanting from the Fed fans who were aghast at the ‘ugly American’s’ behavior at the AO. Their attacks were relentlenss. I don’t understand the duplicity and the justification of TMF’s behavior, all I know is that there are a lot of hypocrites in this world. What was so much different from Roddick’s outburst to TMF’s? Just a few extra words, but the press and the critics came out in droves. This man is treated as some diety, idol worshipping galore. Absolutely ridiculous and sad.

Now, you can all kill me for adding my views. Don’t miss a step or a hearbeat, please feel free, the floor’s open. Hop to it!!


Zola Says:

Boom Boom,
thanks for explanations.

He is perhaps a big point player, ,but not yet against Rafa or Fed. He retired twice against Rafa ( RG 06 and Wimbledon 07) and today against Fed.

What reaction should be considered as an exception? quitting matches at semi-finals? it is already strike 3! If he had a better history, I think people would have been more tolerant.

I think he still has work to do to become mentally tough enough to accept a defeat in a proper manner. Seriously, what would have happened if he continued to play 3 more games and lost 63 62? nothing. If you read his presser, you will be even more disappointed.
If he is ill and can’t play, then he should not collect the money or the points either.

I think ATP should fine him and think about adjusting the rules so that players cannot quit a match when they don’t feel like playing.

I understand if Novak fans get offended by all these criticism. It is not directed at his game. He is certainly very talented and off-court I think he is very funny and alive. Maybe it is his parents or too much pressure. but whatever it is, it is hurting him bad and making him lose fans.


NachoF Says:

“Did Fed really yell at Novak’s parents telling them to “Shut up” as the announced hinted? If so that was great!”

Wait, when did that happen?? anyone remember exactly at what point of the match?


jane Says:

Hi Von,

Thanks for being honest. I know you’re not Djokovic’s biggest fan but you can see some of the dynamics here.

I was not impressed by his retirement, as you know, but I see no reason to give up on the guy; he’s on my list of faves so I’ll stick by him.

———————————————

For anyone who cares:

I did read a report that said Djokovic had to visit the hospital in Moscow after that Davis Cup match. And from what I read in that same article (link below), when he said “it’s not worth it” he didn’t mean the match. The context, as I interpreted it, meant this: it’s not worth it risking his health when he’s only 20 and has many more chances to fight and win. He said he was going to retire after the first set but decided to try to keep playing and it wasn’t getting better.

http://www.foxsports.com.au/story/0,8659,23605592-23216,00.html

I still think he should’ve finished the match, even if he didn’t play well and lost. Nikcap threw in a nice quote about this above.

But it is what it is.

Interestingly, I also read an article about Jamie Baker, who’s recently had a *very* serious health scare; he’d love to get back to tennis, but he said it’s given him a new perspective on life and what’s important.

Here’s the link to that one:

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/sport/tennis/article3822539.ece


jane Says:

“If he is ill and can’t play, then he should not collect the money or the points either.”

Zola, I don’t think Novak knew he was that ill; apparently he’d seen a doctor earlier, before the match, who told him he was okay.

Personally, as a side issue, I’ve often felt that the ones who get walkovers are lucky to get the points & money; they don’t even have to step on the court! Retirements are slightly different and are always touchy; in this case Roger was obviously winning. But there were a lot of retirements besides Djokovic this week: 4 others for sure.

Anyhow, I don’t want to get into a whole thing about it. But good luck to your Rafa tomorrow! Vamos!


Federer Says:

VON:

“…his outburst toward Djoko’s parents. Who knows, this could have upset Djoko who got broken immediately after. The mind/brain is a very fragile organ, which can go haywire for even hearing, as much as an unsavoury comment. I know if someone spoke to my parents in that manner, I would become upset and totally shaking from hurt/anger. They are not children.”

WHY DON’T YOU THINK OF IT THE OTHER WAY: HIS PARENT, AT THE FIRST PLACE, SHOULD NOT MAKE “UNSAVOURY” COMMENTS AND ANNOY A PLAYER SO THAT THEIR “BELOVED” SON WIN SOME MORE MONEY AND BETTER HIS RECORD AGAINST WORLD’S GREATEST? HIS PARENTS OR HIS TEAM SHOULD NOT DO THAT BECAUSE AS YOU SAY, “the mind/brain is a very fragile organ, which can go haywire for even hearing, as much as an unsavoury comment;” I’M FEDERER’S “MIND/BRAIN” DID NOT GO HAYWIRE DESPITE THE “UNSAVOURY” COMMENTS AND CHANTS MADE BY DJOKO TEAM/PARENT DURING ALL THESE MATCH HE PLAYED HIM.

AND ONE MORE THING: YOU SAID, “I know if someone spoke to my parents in that manner, I would become upset and totally shaking from hurt/anger. They are not children.”
RIGHTLTY SAID, BUT YOU SHOULD KEEP ONE THING IN MIDE, IF THEY ARE NOT CHILDREN, THEN THEY SHOULD PERHAPS NOT BEHAVE LIKE ONE!!!


jane Says:

Von,

I replied to you in a longer post that had a couple of links in it, and it didn’t load. I don’t want to repeat eveything I said in case it shows up later (which happened the other day).

But thanks for being honest. I know you’re not a Djokovic fan, but at least you can see some of the dynamics, or read between the lines.

Cheers


jane Says:

Okay i’ve removed the articles links so this’ll upload – apologize for any doubles later folks!

————————————————-
Hi Von,

Thanks for being honest. I know you’re not Djokovic’s biggest fan but you can see some of the dynamics here.

I was not impressed by his retirement, as you know, but I see no reason to give up on the guy; he’s on my list of faves so I’ll stick by him.

———————————————

For anyone who cares:

I did read a report that said Djokovic had to visit the hospital in Moscow after that Davis Cup match. And from what I read in that same article, when he said “it’s not worth it” he didn’t mean the match. The context, as I interpreted it, meant this: it’s not worth it risking his health when he’s only 20 and has many more chances to fight and win. He said he was going to retire after the first set but decided to try to keep playing and it wasn’t getting better.

(search tagline “Djokovic at mercy of illness”)

I still think he should’ve finished the match, even if he didn’t play well and lost. Nikcap threw in a nice quote about this above.

But it is what it is.

Interestingly, I also read an article about Jamie Baker, who’s recently had a *very* serious health scare; he’d love to get back to tennis, but he said it’s given him a new perspective on life and what’s important.

(search tagline Jamie Baker’s brush with death)


Dr. Death Says:

Let’s burn the witch! Burn, Baby, Burn.

Happy – Von?

Or

Djo needs to tell his thousands and thousands of fans around the globe what was/were the reason(s). We want to smell what Djo has cookin.

(The Doctor has many more disgusting things to say if someone can direct me to an R or X tennis chat site. & I hope R & X are the correct designations.)


TD Says:

quote- Federer Says: “A HONEST PIECE OF WRITING, IN MY OPENION. I WAS SEARCHING THE INTERNET CRAZILY TO FIND SOMETHING HONEST ABOUT THAT MATCH.”

Federerfan, you’ll find plenty of honesty here and elsewhere but it’s balance and facts that’s most in need right now.


TD Says:

Von, I just saw your post at 7:58 and you are my hero. Well said! (in every way)


Von Says:

Dr. Death Says:
“Let’s burn the witch! Burn, Baby, Burn. Happy – Von?”

Is this some kind of sick humor directed at me, from you who always want to stir the pot? if I’m reading your post correctly, considering it’s a one-liner and does not say much, then I have nothing more to discuss with you. You’ve totally missed my point and I dare say that they’ll be many one-celled brains which are juszt waiting to find an opportunity to pounce. Enjoy the sickness. Bye.


Zola Says:

Jane,
I don’t know what was wrong with Djoko. He said in his presser he had no fever, no symptoms and the ATP dr couldn’t find what was wrong with him.
he clearly said, “it was not worth it. I am 20 years old…etc.”

this is his press conference:
http://www.asapsports.com/show_interview.php?id=49171

I am not suggesting you or anyone else give up on him. He can’t be a No 3without talent and game. But his behavior is rather unbalanced and it clearly is working against him.

He can benefit from some good advice. Apparently it is not coming from his parents.

Nacho F
Fed’s “be quiet” is on youtube. Here is a link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N4fB5Tp-FGU

That might have been a mental turn-off for Djoko as Von suggested.. It wasn’t so nice of Fed to do it. He should have let the umpire handle the situation. However, I read that it started when Djoko’s parents started shouting at a call on a dispute. They are not helping this kid at all.


jane Says:

Von,

“I don’t buy the argument that Fed was justified in his outburst toward Djoko’s parents. Who knows, this could have upset Djoko who got broken immediately after.”

This is an insightful comment.

At the AO final against Tsonga, Djokovic was clearly disturbed, thrown off, or what-have-you by the conflicts between French fans and his parent’s box, which was right by where he was serving, and went on throughout the first set – which was the only set he lost the entire tournament. He may’ve been bothered by that comment and I hadn’t really thought of it that way.

And you’re right about this too – it wasn’t classy or funny.

Sometimes I just can’t be bothered getting into things with people whose minds I will not change or who will become abusive. So I just don’t comment. But I admire people like you who have a protester’s energy and a legal brain for injustice.


Von Says:

Federer:

Are you the TMF himself? His NIBBS? Royal ruler of the tennis court? Or are you one of his loyal subjects — idol worshippers? But, whoever you are, your post in CAPS tells me that you need to be noticed and/or someone who needs a reply, pronto.

First and foremost, two wrongs don’t make a right. The remarks by his parents was about 3 or more months ago. It’s been over — why rehash it. Today was a different day. Federer has an history of many unsavoury moments. E.g., that Masters tournament can’t remember which one) when he shouted out to Tony Nadal, “That’s OK Tony.”. I don’t know if he felt Nadal’s uncle was coaching, but, sorry to say, a classy person would let that pass. And, considering he and Nadal are supposedly good friends, wow, what a way to show frienship. Additionally, there’s that very vivid scene at last year’s Wimby when he shouted to Nadal, more or less in an intidating manner, which would upset anyone, “Challenge that,” and his statemnt about hawkeye. Unfortunately, these scenes are selectively obliterated. How so?

“IF THEY ARE NOT CHILDREN, THEN THEY SHOULD PERHAPS NOT BEHAVE LIKE ONE!!!”

I saw that match, and they were not shouting or speaking directly to Federer, he just heard some sounds emanating from their box. The commentators didn’t even hear them, so it could not have been loud. But, everyone heard Federer. But, he’s TMF. Federer needed some relief from a tense moment, so shouting at them relieved it.

If Federer wants to be thought of as classy, or the greatest, then he’s going about it in the wrong way. But, his adoring fans will justify anything.

I wish that Djoko had stayed in the match and made Federer sweat some more. If he indeed has mono, then the workout would indeed make him too exhausted to do anthing much tomorrow against Nadal — he would have been exhausted. Today, he got a gift. Don’t look a gift horse in the mounth and sneer at it. Just think about the tiredness factor. I’m sorry the crowd/spectators were not given their money’s worth; those are the unfortunate ones in this situation.


Skorocel Says:

To Von:

I’m sorry, but wasn’t it YOU who (cca 3 months ago) were SOO vociferous about Djoker’s parents and their (apparently) improper behavior? Why such a change? Djoker’s once again retired in a high-profile match, and you (who once were the first one to point out all those retirements) suddenly don’t give a damn about it? A switcheroo act? Or do you really view yelling “That ball was in!” (or something like that) as a textbook example on how to behave when watching a tennis match? As far as I know, the crowd (including the player’s parents) should be quiet during the rallies, isn’t it?

And btw, did Fed scream something like “Shut the f.ck up!” (just like A-Rod so often tends to do in his matches)? The truth is he just reminded Djoker’s parents of the basic ethic rule/principle/whatever which the crowd has to follow when watching a tennis match (i.e. to be quiet during the rallies) and moments after ACKNOWLEDGED the line judge’s mistake, so the point (which he originally won) had to be replayed… I’m sorry Von, but I can’t see anything wrong on it… Had he abused them, that would be of course ANOTHER thing! But did he do that? NO is the answer.


Von Says:

jane:

“He may’ve been bothered by that comment and I hadn’t really thought of it that way. ***
“And you’re right about this too – it wasn’t classy or funny.”

Djoko is a very emotional young man, and so are his parents. Because of his heightened emotions, that angry statement by Fed could have definitely unnerved him. He seemed upset to me and that could have thrown him off, produced breathing problems, whatever. Who knows, but it wasn’t classy or funny. If Federer wants to be the greatest, let’s start at the very beginning, zip it up. Woulld Sampras or Laver have shouted out to their opponent’s family to be quiet? I can say an emphatic, NO.

Stick around they’ll be jawing until tomorrow, or doomsday, whichever will suit them. I’m sick of the nasty sexist comments. Bitch? That’s what SOME men call women, and considering that we were all birthed by women, what a disgraceful way to describe our mothers. Think about it you sexist, filthy-mouthed posters. Thanks for the opportunity to address this defiling of womanhood.

————
TD: Thanks friend, at least you can understand the double-standards – we’ve been in the trenches defending our player many times. We’re pros at this, and can fuly empathize.

I asked you this question before on another thread, don’t know if you saw my post, but, are you male or female? Just curious. I like to place faces/gender on my fellow posters.


willie Says:

Thank goodness he retired, as we will now see a complete final! This Djokovic has never impressed me as a person. He is a good player, but a champion? No. A champion doesn’t quit when he is down. Maybe we can put it down to his youth, but Nadal has never been a quitter-nor Federer!
I am sorry for the fans who paid good money to come and watch what should have been a great semi-final.
Looking forward to watching the final between real champions!


Von Says:

Skorocel:

“I’m sorry, but wasn’t it YOU who (cca 3 months ago) were SOO vociferous about Djoker’s parents and their (apparently) improper behavior? Why such a change?”

If you read my post you’ll notice my remarks, vis-a-vis, “I was killed for making any comments by these ‘ex-fans’ concerning Djoko’s AO behavior.”

I can say that I’m acknowledging that I was very vociferous about his and his parents behavior. I mentioned in another post last evening, the same thing. How many more forms of acknowledgement do you need for confirmation? OK, here goes, I condemned Djoko’s and his family’s behaviour many, many times. I did not like him dissing the crowd, nor did I like them yelling. Is that satisfactory to you? Or, do you want more. I’m really seeing some different sides of people today, aren’t i? That’s good, nolw I know who’s who. Good job guys, enlghten me some more. Jump on the gravy train, but don’t get choked.

“And btw, did Fed scream something like “Shut the f.ck up!” (just like A-Rod so often tends to do in his matches)?”

No, he only said, “This f***ing hawkeye is killing me, and went on on several changeovers to berate the umpire. But tht’sz OK with you isn’t it? Friend.

“I’m sorry Von, but I can’t see anything wrong on it… Had he abused them, that would be of course ANOTHER thing! But did he do that? NO is the answer.”

No, you’re not sorry, and YES, there’s something wrong with what he said. How would you feel if someone said that to your parents? Come on, Skorocel, why not be happy that your ‘hero’ got a gift and leave it at that. I wish Djoko had run the TMF around for another 30 minutes. Leave him winded for tomorrow. Anyway, you’re in good company with his other fans, so enjoy the camaraderie. It changes from hour to hour. Bye.


jane Says:

Zola:

Thanks for the links; you may or may not want to read the article link I posted.


Zola Says:

Jane,
I read the article. Still, I don’t think playing 3 extra games would have geopradized his health and his participation in French Open.

He is making excuses . It is now even more apparent. what I see here is a great talent with a very bad attitude. he is not a bad kid. I think he really tries to be funny and popular and be accepted by everybody.
I see Djoko as a victim of bad parenting and too many expectations. I am sure if someone talks to him and tells him what is right and what is wrong, he is smart enough to revise some of his attitude and will have a much easier path to his goal of being No 1.

we can encourage him to stay as he is and let him suffer the consequences and lose his fans or we can tell what is unacceptable to us and maybe if he or his PR read some comments they might give him some advice.

It is not fun to be 20 and be disliked so much. I really feel bad for him and I wish for this to change sooner than later.


Zola Says:

i shouldn’t say ‘disliked”. perhaps “criticized” is a better word. I for one, don’t dislike him.


Sara Says:

“I wish Djoko had run the TMF around for another 30 minutes. Leave him winded for tomorrow.”

This is a comment of a person who suppozed like tennis, wanting to see a final with one player in poor condition? Ts, ts, ts…..


NachoF Says:

Von:
No, he only said, “This f***ing hawkeye is killing me, and went on on several changeovers to berate the umpire. But tht’sz OK with you isn’t it? Friend.

Are you serious??? did he really say it that way??
please provide a link


sensationalsafin Says:

I love Djokovic’s game. He is incredible. Which is what makes this whole thing that much worse. Why is he retiring? All the time? I mean cmon!

Idk what happened with Federer yelling at Djokovic’s parents so I’m not gonna comment on it. I’m not gonna justify it or say he was wrong.

But Federer has more class than Djokovic, to say the least. Federer’s not the first player to talk to the audience in some way. Anyone remember Berdych vs Nadal in Madrid a few years ago? I don’t think it’s a big deal, though. Whether he was wrong or right doesn’t matter, really, as long as the tennis is good. Today, the tennis was good. Djokovic was pushing Federer and Federer was producing some of his best stuff to stay ahead. Djokovic would not have retired had he held serve. That game was very close and the last two points he just gave away and gave up the match. Had it been a complete match, that was probably the point where Federer would’ve ran away with it anyway. Djokovic probably saw that and didn’t wanna fight back… because he’s a pansy.

I don’t think he meant it wasn’t worth playing. I think he meant it wasn’t worth pushing himself too hard if he had some physical issue or whatever it was. That’s complete bull. Nadal is only 21 and look at what he’s done to his knees already. It sucks. It sucks for him, it sucks for tennis, it sucks for everyone, even his opponents, who can only improve by playing him (look at Federer for proof of that). But he still goes out there every day and gives it his all. It’s a shame his is so naturally grinding that he’s gonna burn out sooner rather than later, but he still fights. Nadal has the heart of a champion. Djokovic has got to find it if he wants to go down as a great champion. To me, Nadal and Federer are there. Although Hewitt sucks nowadays, he’s still considered a great champion. He doesn’t have a champion’s game anymore but he was a great fighter in his peak years and history will praise him for his will and grit.


craig Says:

That video of Fed crying shows that at 20 he might have been considered a sissy or pussy.


Von Says:

Susan:

“This is a comment of a person who suppozed like tennis, wanting to see a final with one player in poor condition? Ts, ts, ts…..”

Yesz, I love tennis. SZimply put by his own fans regarding others, ‘if he’s not well, don’t play.” Yes, if he wasz given a goodx workout, and still won, then tomorrow, we’d see if he’fit or not, wouldn’t we? And, dxont preach to me about tennisz, I’ve seen your posts, you have nothing good to say about ANY other playesr EXCEPT Federer. You can’t be so closed minded and like tennisz as a sport. How can you enjoy any other match, if Federer doesn’t play, considering you only enjoy watching him? Talk about liking tennis, WOW. If yolu really are a tennis fan, you can also enjoy the success and game of MANY other players, not just ONE. Save the lecture, Ok? I’VE BEEN ACCUSED OF BEING A BULLY, LET’S NOT DISAPPOINT THE JUDGES.


Von Says:

NachoF:

“Are you serious??? did he really say it that way?? please provide a link.”

I don’t have a link — I saw the match on TV. Talk about no class in front of that genteel Wimby crowd — not good at all for a champion. But you guys will find an excuse as always. It has been justified previously.
————
NB: TO ALL: Sorry for the many typos in my post to Susan – anger, not a good emotion.

————

Sensationalsafin: Very good fair-minded post from you – shows an open mind. :) But that’s how the big guy is, isn’t he? Very open minded. I just love him. :)


bob22 Says:

I am not suppressed to hear this comment from Sean. His writings can be full of poison; he knows how to turn tennis fans against each other. He believes or pretends that sole purpose of tennis players is to entertain masses. For him, tennis court is arena with gladiators in it, who are there to fight each other to the last breathe. Unfortunately for him, there is no “pollicem vertere”, but he has this blog to show the masses how to crucify choosen victim…
His statement, where Novak really hasn’t shown much of that fighting spirit up to this point in his career is idiotic. How can he be a third in the world if he was not fighting every point in every game? Go back and check how many sets did he played in each game on last year Wimbledon or US open. Will someone who is not a fighter be able to produce that astonishing fight against Stepanek or Tsonga? Going back to today’s match, yes he does have right to retire if he is sick. If he is faking sickness then ATP should penalize him.
Today we had 75 minutes of first class tennis. Sean, if you can deliver more, show us your play on YouTube so we can get entertain with your knowledge and skills.


Von Says:

Correction: Post was meant for Sara, not “Susan” Apologies.


Ryan Says:

To Von and Jane and all the fed haters: Djok only gets broken after he is mentally upset with watever that went on wit his parents.Otherwise his serve is unbreakable and nobody can even take a set off him…..gimme a break…….If he was that upset he woulda got broken in that game itself.But he got broken in the next game.So your reasoning is retarded.Fed outplayed djok and its as simple as that.You gotta give credit where it is due for a man who almost lost this tournament to come out and beat djok in straight sets who was dominant and gave 2 bagels and finished everyone of his opponents in straight sets without tiebreaks.Fed didnt win the first set in a tiebreak….it was a legitimate lead 6-3.And yeah
I did see the match so I’m not commenting by seeing the scoreline.This outplaying is wat will always happen when fed makes less unforced errors and goes for his strokes.

If he starts making UE’s then djok will win against him because all he has to do is keep the ball in play and fed will make all the errors.Fed lost the AO to him because of his poor play due to mono more than Djok winning it…..

Another trick other than retirements that djok uses is that wen fed gets an advantage a couple or more times in deuce games djoker double faults on purpose so that everyone else will think….ok so…..djok lost it more than fed winning it…..thats another one of his tricks wen he knows fed is about to break him or outplay him for sure.


jane Says:

Someone wanted a link about Fed’s hawkeye disputes. Here’s an article that discusses the hawkeye issues at Wimbledon last year:

http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/306831/federer_whines_and_wins_at_wimbledon.html

This is a clip – forward to about 5:00 minutes in and it continues until the end. The clip phases out after the point and then they show a bit of Roger talking to the ump saying that Hawkeye is killing him. There might’ve been more shown on other footage.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zSpdsXYtK7k


Sara Says:

I don`t know if there is another Sara/Susan, but that was the firs time I post here, and with this one will be last!


Ryan Says:

Everyone is complaining about fed’s behaviour in wimby……ur right…..fed is a human being and he is not perfect like everybody else…but he is liked by the overwhelming majority of tennis fans and other tennis players.He has received the laureus award many times.Yeah he bribed the judges and got it…I know that…What more do you want from him?
Fed fans like me will try to justify his faults just like you djok fans try to justify his retirements,injury timeouts, his arrogance and his parents remarks that their son is the best of all time and should be the first in the GOAT list in golden capital letters……


NachoF Says:

Von:
“I don’t have a link — I saw the match on TV. Talk about no class in front of that genteel Wimby crowd — not good at all for a champion. But you guys will find an excuse as always. It has been justified previously.”

Oh, please. I doubt he actually said “f***ing killing me”.We are lucky to have Federer as #1. Someone as classy as him makes the sport look good….. its not like Sampras never make any mistakes either anyway.


craig Says:

Jane thanks for the links…baby tantrum for sure.
Anyone have any of Fed Hidalgo third set where Fed goes nuts?


Von Says:

NachoF:

“We are lucky to have Federer as #1. Someone as classy as him makes the sport look good…..”

Well, you’ve run true to form — didn’t I say you’ll justify his behavior and doubt that he made that statement?

———
Ryan:

First and foremost, I’m not a Fed ‘hater’. Just because I don’t like what he says and how he behaves, does not make me hate him. I dislike his behavior. I’m not saying that Fed didn’t play very good in that match — I mentioned on another thread that it was good tennis. Also, I stated that Djoko got broken ‘after’ that Fed scene, I meant the next game. I don’t know what kind of relationship you have with your parents, but just think if someone shouted out to your parents to “shut up”, even if they are wrong, how would you feel? It’sz embarrassing! My comments concerned the situation, that I felt Novak was upsest. Some thought what Fed said was funny, I don’t.

What I find disconcerting about this whole situation is that it’s OK for Fed to say anything, and it’s justified, even funny, but not if it’s done by anonther player, they’re crucified. If you would only go back to the Roddick threads you’ll see all the garbage written and how much he was crucified for saying to Neishikori “stick it to me.” Everyone had their own two cents of nonsense and sick humor to add. Most didn’t even see the match, just read some distorted comments written by a reporter, and they took off with their sick comments. I was horrified at the cruel statements made. I suppose it was OK for us, the Roddick fans to digest that. And, before that the AO incident with the kids. Big headlines, but when Fed does it, it’s hushed up, and swept under a rug. The same person who is happy about Fed’s behavior, called Roddick a ‘thug’. That’s OK. I don’t refer to them as ‘haters’ because I don’t like hatred. But, from the comments here, there is a lot of hatred among some of the Fed fans. There’s a ratio of approx. 10:1, in favor of Fed on these threads. We are bullied by the gang, but yet, we are called ‘bullies.” Nice, very nice people.

I made my comments based on what I saw and I thought it was rude, crude and impertinent for Federer to behave in that manner. From my own thinking, I would say that Djoko had to find this upsetting. What did anyone expect him to say in his presser, “I became upset when he shouted out to my mummy, to be quiet? Oh, that would have gone over just super. You guys need to have some reality checks. What sort of world is this? One bereft of human decency?


Danica Says:

I am sorry I don’t have time to read all the posts but I just want to say that I am disappointed.
Nole’s retirement may be valid, but I doubt it would have jeopardize his career (like he almost claimed). Instead, he should look up to his compatriot, Jelena Jankovic, who plays stuffed with painkillers and antibiotics all the way to the end (tears or no tears). She IS a fighter. He chooses easier way out.

For the record though, Novak did retire in matches he was leading like the one with Davydenko. You do not retire at 2:1 in a match that actually puts your country out of Davis Cup world group for nothing. And you do not retire in a final of a tournament for nothing either. So, while I tend to understand the motives, I still think he does this more often than necessary.


NachoF Says:

Von:
“didn’t I say you’ll justify his behavior and doubt that he made that statement?”

I dont know if you did… doesnt really make a difference… just you because you said people werent gonna believe you doesnt mean what you said is true… its actually quite simple to predict people on the internet arent gonna believe you if what you are gonna say is complete bull.


Glenn Says:

As I stated in the “Nadal Will Never be #1″ thread, Djokovic has talent, but he has no class or character.

Bad parenting is only part of it. Djokovic is smug and arrogant. That’s his personality.

Anyone notice Federer applaud one of Djokovic’s cross-court winners? Federer has talent AND class.

BTW, I used to not like Federer the way I don’t like Djokovic now. Now I like Federer a lot. But Federer never demonstrated the kind of smugness and arrogance that Djokovic now displays. So I don’t think I’ll ever be a Djokovic fan. His tennis is nice, but it’s more exciting to watch Federer, Gasquet, Kohlschreiber, Wawrinka and Bolelli.

I appreciate all the great examples that have been given of what a true champion is all about. I would also like to add Hingis, who finished a match against Schnyder despite an injury (I forget what tourny it was), and Henin, who did not retire from her matches despite fighting a cold (again, my memory is spotty as to the tourney, but both examples were from last year).


Danica Says:

Hm, I know that Djokovic applauds his opponents quite often. On the other side, he is not giving them enough credit in post match conferences.

Hingis is a great champ but I don’t think anyone was as arrogant as her. And if I remember correctly, Henin had to retire in AO finals and hand the trophy to Mauresmo.


Kevin Says:

Very Amazing.
Some people here find excuse for Djokovic’s retirement and said he is a great player.

Though I am fan of Federer, I still feel it is a shame of Federer for his comment on Murray in Dubai.

Love is blind!


mirolove Says:

well– done novak.. he did a great job quiting again. i mean. its for good. but its a shame. sorry to tell. it just that i love and like federer and nadal playing too. so sorry to you… and for your fans. i really hate your boastful face NOVAK CHOKE O’ BITCH. OOOOOOOOPSSSSS…… SORRY??


jane Says:

Danica / Von – thanks for some sane & balanced posts in a flurry of emotional tirades.

Djoko had to go to the hospital in Moscow after that retirement. I wonder sometimes if it’s nerves with him but maybe he still has respiratory issues? Anyway I’m sure he feels like crap for having to quit but says he puts his health first. This time he might’ve just played out the match but in the Wimbledon semi against Rafa he could barely move. What you said makes sense Danica – he does do this too often and needs to find a way not to, but on the other hand, I think he’s not doing it lightly.

Ryan – there are emotions between love & hate. I am not a “fed hater”; I have lots of respect for his talent but he’s just not one of my faves. And he’s human; like ALL players, he, too, makes mistakes.

Glenn – Henin quit in the AO final! I expect she must’ve been quite sick to do so because she’s a pretty great fighter other times. Still that’s a pretty high profile retirement – a Grand Slam title match.


Tejuz Says:

This will be Fed’s good chance to turn the tables on Nadal .. especially on clay… and his 5-2 record against Nadal in their last 7 encounters should bode well for Fed and his wins against Nalbandian and Djoker should instill a bit more confidence. All said.. Nadal has been playing like a champ, ‘King of clay’ and fed will surely have to earn this win the Hard Way.

Djoker.. well.. i have commented enough about him before.. i still maintain the same opinion about him. This only proves how tough it is what Fed and Nadal have achieved in the last 4 years.

In a way, this adds more interest to the rest of the year .. with the Top 1 and 2 rising to the challenge and showing the rest where they stand.


Tejuz Says:

Von..

i remember how you had criticised other posters here for switchin sides and opinion.

Now you doing it yourself…

What was it that Djoker did in these last 3 months that made you change your stance??? Please explain.. if you wish to.


Von Says:

Tejuz:

“What was it that Djoker did in these last 3 months that made you change your stance??? Please explain.. if you wish to.”

If you read my post you’ll see that I did not have any comment about Djoko’s retirement. I don’t have an opinion. The only opinion I do have, concerns Fed’s behavior towards Djoko’s parents. If you remember correctly, at the AO, I criticized Djoko for his behavior toward the crowd, and his comments regarding Federer. Now, it’s the reverse, it’s Fed who has behaved inappropriately. Thus, if I found Djoko’s behavior unbecoming, and I complained about it, now that’s it’s in the reverse, and Fed’s doing it, should I, in conscience, say nothing about Fed’s comments? I think that would be unjust. My summation, what’s wrong for Djoko to do, is also wrong for Fed to do. There isn’t a case of switched loyalties, because I am not a fan of either. I hope this explanation is helpful.


Debra Gardner Says:

Unlike many of you, I don’t think it is particularly wise to play on after you’ve gotten yourself a nasty injury. I don’t admire Roger for playing with Mono, especially as it’s an infecious disease and isn’t just past along through kissing. I admire people who are so caught up by adrenaline and sheer stubborness that they will tough it out no matter what, but ten or so years later when they retire with injuries that are going to hamper the rest of their lives, all the money in the world isn’t going to compensate for that. I figured that Joko would get a lot of flack for retiring. Now if he had passed out on the court, then he’d have been a hero instead of a villain. I don’t applaud jumping out of a game just because you are losing, but only Joko knows how he was feeling, no mattter how it might have looked and it’s no good comparing him to anyone else. Also what’s making a lot of money, being a 20-year-old professional got to do with being a mature person? People mature at different times in their lives. Rafa has been on the tour since 2000 which has given him eight years to be the gracious person he is. Roger has been there since 1999 and at 20, he wasn’t the way he is now at 26, nor should he have been. All of these guys are still kids in a lot of ways and we get to watch them grow up right in front of our eyes (or in my case, ears), and sometimes growing up can be a bumpy ride. Think of Andre Agassi at 20, or even at 24. And yet when he retired, he had matured into someone really special. People got on Pete Sampras’s case when he lost the u.s. open after winning it the first time and admited to being “relieved” Boy did they have a field day. Jane, I appreciate your level-headed comments. I’m following six guys including Roger, Rafa and Joko and I like them all for different reasons. I’ll be interested to see the kind of person Joko grows into by the end of his career. As for Roger snapping at Joko’s box, well, it wasn’t gentlemanly behavior, but it sure was human, and I like that!


Skorocel Says:

Tejuz said:

“This only proves how tough it is what Fed and Nadal have achieved in the last 4 years.”

Amen to that, Tejuz!


LHC Says:

It is becoming very necessary to have the option of filtering out Von’s comments from this site…


FEDERER Says:

VON:

My sentence should start with “oh my god!”
After reading your first comment I thought myabe I should get back to you thinking there is no one mental or anything, but reading your post later makes me tell you: firstly, please do not contradict yourself and secondly, as Sean suggested Djoko to do, “what’s going on between your ears is another matter…hire a psychologist or two and a good trainer and get it worked out in your head.”
You seriously need some attention.


FEDERER Says:

and VON:

someone in the crowd shouted something about Fed’s girlfriend, but federer didn’t tap out of the match even though he lost the first set and things were not going his way…wait a second, maybe he should learn that from Djokovic!


Von Says:

Federer:

Is something wrong with your comprehension? My explanation is too simple for you to understand isn’t it? Maybe, I need a psychiatrist, but I doubt whether you’re the person who is in a position to make that determination.
___________

LHC: How many screen names do you have? You consistently write the same sentence about me, under several screen names. If i were to laud praises upon Federesr, there wouldn’t be any problems, would there?


Von Says:

I’ll support federer when I feel like supporting him and I’ll support djokovic when I feel like supporting him so everyone else need not talk too much.Forger these too.I love andy roddick.
I love andy roddick so much that I got pissed when he got engaged to brooklyn decker.He should be in the GOAT list anyway after beating federer in Miami.And FEDERER(the blog writer) needs to understand that I dont need any psychologist to
tell me that I’m mad. All the people who know me have already told me that so it’s old news.


Daniel Says:

Wow!

I think I never saw Fed lost two games (two sets) serving for the tiebreaks. I can`t believe it!

Someone asked the impact that Ferrer would cause in other tennis players when he blow a lead in the second set against Nadal. Imagine now that Fed managed (I still don`t know how) to blow a 4-0 lead!

Well as a posted before, Davydenko and Fed couldn`t do it, perhaps Nalbandian or Djokovic can. But I think that if Fed and Nadal meet again in another clay final, Fed could do it. He played really well in the beginning of the second set, which was a strange set untill Nadal took control of the match (or Fed give it ti him).

Congrats to Nadal, his aura is now in the sky.


Von Says:

TO MY TWIN: Great post from whomever wrote it. at 10.16 am. Don’t you have anything better to do than to use my screen name? I think you have enough problems with your guy than to be bothered impersonating me at this time.


Von Says:

FEDERER: Do you know that it’s a crime to impersonate another person? BE CAREFUL!!


Maja Says:

Jane, I will not talk too much about your post, beacause your comment was so great I don’t have nothing to add, I’m just glad that Djokovic has such a true and smart fan like you. (I’m his fan too offcourse) :)

“Maja, why doesn’t Djoko ever retire when he’s ahead? Surely this illness doesn’t only appear when he’s losing to top guys?”

Well, I don’t really have an informations about all of his retirenments, but Boom Boom in the comment somewhere above yours named 2 times when Djokovic retired when he was in the lead and it wasn’t against top guys. I have to point out that I don’t support fake illness stories but still we can not know how Djokovic felt no metter how does it looks like – it’s his body…


Maja Says:

This question I quoted was from Sean Randall – I forgot to put the name before the quote – sorry. :)


Maja Says:

For Sean Randall

This is what Boom Boom said about retirements:
“He (DJokovic) was winning against Davydenko 2:1 (Davis Cup) when he retired. He wasn’t losing against Wawrinka when he retired 6-6.”


FEDERER Says:

VON:

Do you know that it’s a crime to blame another person for something he or she has not done? BE CAREFUL!!! And no doubt you need some attention…psychologist may be one of the suggestions/solution…there are more…just make sure you use one!


Skorocel Says:

Daniel said:

“Congrats to Nadal, his aura is now in the sky.”

No Daniel, it is currently in STRATOSPHERE! 2 breaks of serve in each set – and still a 2 sets to love defeat? This can’t be serious! I’m literally FED UP with those matches! FED UP! I don’t wanna see any Fed vs Nadal clay-court match ANYMORE – even if Fed wins! NEVER! That’s a torture! You’re literally “digging in the dirt” for 2 long hours only to lose the whole thing once more? No, I don’t wanna see that anymore! NEVER!

That said, congrats to Nadal and all of his fans! Give this guy 2-3 more years, and he’ll be forever remembered as the best clay-courter in the history of the game, period! Take this as a compliment, but I can’t help myself – he’s like a beast! A lion/bear/tiger/wolf/cougar/whatever in one single pack! Punch him, shoot him, abuse him, or whatever – but still, you’re NOT GONNA hit that winner past him on the red dirt… Frankly, I just don’t get how Wilander can have the “balls” to criticize Fed for not trying? I mean, HOW ON EARTH CAN YOU BEAT A PLAYER, WHO YOU SIMPLY CAN’T HIT A WINNER AGAINST?! That’s mission impossible! There was Chang, there was Courier, and then there was Hewitt, but no one of them has set the bar such ridiculously high (as far as the physical aspect of the game is concerned) as did Nadal! This guy is literally DESTINED to rule on clay!


jane Says:

Daniel,

You know Fed played well, and if anyone is going to make a comeback it’s Rafa. So you shouldn;t be too disappointed.


jane Says:

Debra G,

I was going to raise the point about individuality too; what’s good for one is not always good for another. Each has a different level of health & different immune systems.

You also raise two worthy additional points: a) about the amount of time it takes to mature for some rather that others and b) about the fact that it’s not always wise to play on through injuries, or in tournament after tournament; sometimes longevity has to be considered over immediate goals.

I had a tough time watching Agassi at the end, knowing he was taking cortisone shots before every match; I also had a tough time watching Rafa play the USO last year with his knees taped.
Mainly that’s because I like the players & the game and want to see both at their best level.


Daniel Says:

Skorocel describe his feelings (and mine) very well.

Once Nadal break back the first time in the second a set, I talk too myself: Oh my god, Fed is going to loose this lead, I can`t believe (it was a torutre to watch). I just which for him to make 8 straigth aces in two games that was what he needs. How can he not managed to win just two games in his own serve?

I think his gotta a litle nervous in 4-3, and the thought that he could loose cross his mind, against the worst player to vacillate with. That was it, Nadal felt the moment and the rest is history.


Skorocel Says:

To Daniel:

You know, these are the moments when Nadal is at his most dangerous… And I’ll have to give him credit here – be his game ugly or not! Not to say he isn’t a great frontrunner, but he always seems to play his best tennis when he’s trailing – especially on clay. I mean, how many of those painful losses which he already suffered to the Spaniard will it take for Roger to be finally aware of this?!

Once Nadal got that first rebreak to go 1-4, I knew the match was over for Fed… In the first 4-5 games of that 2nd set, the guy plays as if nothing had happened, and then he suddenly starts to shank all those forehands? Unbelievable! And you know, that was ALL the Spaniard needed to regain the momentum… From there on, it was no way back for the Swiss!

Somewhat similar situation actually happened in that FO 2006 final – Fed won the 1st set convincingly 6-1, but then at 0-1 in the 2nd, he lost his serve despite leading 40-0, when he firstly acknowledged the line judge’s error and let the point to be replayed (how’s that for a bad sportsmanship, Von?), and then (after losing that point) at 40-15 he missed one helluva easy FH volley, which will remain haunting me literally forever… Of course, tough to say what would’ve happened had he won that game, but you know, these are the moments which Nadal literally strives for! Once you give him a chance, there’s no way back…

But anyway, as I’ve said, Fed’s already surpassed the expectations which I (and surely many of his fans) had for him before this MC tourney, so let’s look at the positives… He beat Nalby, Djoker, and Monfils pretty convincingly, which is not bad at all (especially when we consider that the first 2 are currently perhaps Fed’s biggest rivals – except Nadal, of course)… But can he beat Nadal when it matters the most (i.e. on June 8th 2008)? I really doubt it… Yes, it’s nice to see that it was once again a close encounter (a lot closer than the last year’s final, I should add), but still, the winner was THE SAME… And that’s the only thing that matters for the Spaniard! He can win 2:0 or 2:1, but still, it’s a win for him. A win, which will once again raise his confidence to that stratospheric heights, and a loss which will once again be a major setback for the Swiss on his quest for the GOAT throne… But the worst thing on this defeat isn’t actually the fact that Fed’s lost, but the fact that Nadal was able to EASILY (I repeat, EASILY!) come back from being broken twice (2) in each set… That tells you one thing: Nadal, when he is fully focused, is simply UNBEATABLE on clay… And that’s the worrying thing for Fed.

So can he get him on that June 8th 2008 – if he gets there? Well, after seeing yet another clay-court suffering today, I really doubt it…


jane Says:

Rafa also came back from 2 breaks down in the second set against Ferrer in the quarters didn’t he?

He’s the King of clay (doubles & singles) and comebacks. He doesn’t make many errors and he never counts himself out. He forced Roger back in the second set and took away the net; he plays smart and point-by-point. Doesn’t look back or ahead. Rarely gets rattled. I don’t know if I’ve watched a more focused player.


Glenn Says:

Von, I think you are pretty consistent. You seem to have a certain standard regarding on-court etiquette from players and have simply applied that rather consistently to all the players no matter who your favorite is. I respect that.

I like the comment someone made about Federer not quitting after someone made a bad comment about his girlfriend.

When it comes right down to it, no matter what excuse someone makes for Djokovic quitting (upset about his parents, upset about possibly losing, getting his fat ego get the better of him), the fact is that he quit. Though I don’t respect Djokovic, I DO respect his game, and he was not playing badly at all. It does seem rather emotional and psychosomatic with him. But then the fact that he cannot contain his emotions means that he is not champion material – simple as that.


NK Says:

Did Federer shout out “Shut up” to Djoko’s parents? No. If you watch the video, his exact words were “Be quiet,” which is not quite as offensive nor insulting. He was not specifically looking at Djoko’s parents, either. He merely looked up momentarily as he was walking back to the serving or receiving line. He could have been talking to anyone.

Was Federer’s so-called outburst provoked? I honestly don’t know, but knowing Djoko’s mother’s open taunting of Federer at the AO, I would venture to say yes.

Regarding Fed’s “outburst” at Wimby against the Hawkeye, he never used the F word. He was reacting in the heat of battle to a system that he had never liked from the beginning.

Federer is not perfect, but those that don’t like him demand perfection (from him) and eagerly pounce on anything he does or says that they believe amounts to a serious transgression.

Frankly, my admiration for Federer has gone up greatly since his mono situation became known. Unlike Ancic who took six months off, Federer has been battling in public not just the disease but the media and all those who don’t like him, subjecting himself in the process to unkind speculation and scorn. But he has never used the disease as an excuse for his four losses this year, especially against Fish and Roddick, and he has openly credited them for playing great tennis.

A lot has been said about Djoko’s withdrawal yesterday, and I am not going to add to it, but I am willing to give him the benefit of the doubt, something the anti-Fed crowd is not quite known for.

That said, do I like Djokovic? No. Will I ever root for him? Not likely. Yet, I have not said one negative thing about him because I am no more perfect than he is, or anyone else for that matter.

But Federer is in a class by himself. He has single-handedly raised the bar in tennis, challenging just about everyone to play better. He also has single-handedly raised the profile of tennis in a way that has made thousands of people all over the world who never otherwise followed tennis to watch it, especially when he is playing. He is truly the greatest thing that has happened to Tennis in the open era.

That he unanimously won awards for best sportsmanship and most popular champion, that too by his peers, speakes volumes of just how well he is liked by people that compete with him and know him well. I would anyday trust their judgement more than the comments of the anti-fed people who rant over his so-called transgressions on these boards.


fed is afraid Says:

federer pees in his pants when he sees nadal on the other side of the net. he is a girl, just like choker.


jane Says:

Glenn,

“he is not champion material – simple as that.”

I wonder if it is this simple though; after all, he did win a grand slam just a few months ago, so he is a champion already. And he’s won a number of MS shields at only 20 years old.

The question that lingers about Novak -for me anyhow- is can he get over this and be consistently excellent, focused & healthy? That’s what I am waiting to see. And it may take a while. Some have already pointed out the span between Sampras’ first GS, and Agassi’s too, I believe. When success happens fast & young, it can take a while to adjust to. And players all have different “areas” that need adjusting.

Anyhow, I won’t tirelessly go on. :-)

Cheers


Von Says:

Glenn:

“Von, I think you are pretty consistent. You seem to have a certain standard regarding on-court etiquette from players and have simply applied that rather consistently to all the players no matter who your favorite is. I respect that.”

Thank you, Glenn, I’m glad that someone else understands what I’m saying, and that is I apply the same standard to all.
— no exclusions.

About Djokoko’s retirement, I won’t comment because I don’t know the circumstances, and the only question I have concerning his health would be, can we honestly say that he was not sick, or did we want him to continue and see him collapse? I don’t know what happened, so I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt. The answer lies with Djoko.

“But then the fact that he cannot contain his emotions means that he is not champion material – simple as that.”

I mentioned on aother thread that I don’t feel Djoko can stand the rigors of playing everyday — he’s too frail and could possibly not become a great champion, but an ‘also ran’.


Braca Says:

Lets see, the author of this article says this:
The retirement follows a mysterious pattern of in-match withdrawals by the Serb, who pulled a similar act against Nadal at the French Open, Nadal at Wimbledon and even against Davydenko this year in Davis Cup. …

Then, two sentences later:

And why is it only against the top guys and at moments when you feel like the match is no longer within grasp that decide to wave the white flag?

Well how about that Davydenko match. He surrendered leading 2:1 after three sets, in a match that would have tied it at 2, and leave the decison to the last single.

The fact is that Novak did retire a few times, but every time there was a reason. Everybody who watched Federer match could have seen that he wasn’t as good as in the previous three, and that he was struggling to catch a breath. besides, if you feel dizzy on the court, it is hard to play, anybody who played even recreational tennis knows that. And don’t forget people do retire, even in the finals of Grand Slams (Henin against Mauresmo), semifinals (Nalbandian in the semies at RG 2006 against, Federer) or other finals (last week Davydenko surrenderd to, you guessed – Federer in Estoril).

I just think too many Federer lovers are realizing that inevitable change on the top of the rankings is coming.


craig Says:

I think Novak has lung problems. He had an operation in his sinuses in Italy. I dont know if this is ever cured. They mentioned something about the dust being kicked up and was aggravating Novak’s condition.They said the court was sprinkled. He must have an underlying condition; that would explain why he quit during Davidenko and Wawrinka-he wasn’t losing. If this is true I dont see him having a great clay career.


jane Says:

Luke Jensen, at the AO this year, commented that he thinks Novak may have athletic (or exercise) induced asthma; if Djokovic did have this, you’d think they’d find it though. But all the blinkers are there: asthma is aggravated by colds/viruses, stress, physical exertion, and pollens/etc in the air. So maybe he should check it out if he hasn’t already. Asthma doesn’t have to present as a child; there is such a thing as adult-onset asthma.


Von Says:

jane Says:
Danica / Von – thanks for some sane & balanced posts in a flurry of emotional tirades.

Sorry, I did not notice your post until a few minutes ago. You’re welcome, but no need to thank me — the pleasure, but in this case, displeasure, was all mine. I was too engrossed with staving off the attacks. That’s me with my invisible picket sign, just working my way to the award for the “most disliked/controversial adversary to ever hit the tennis threads”, and not likely to succed. However, at the end of the day, I have to deal with my conscience, and then ask myself, the question, can I just sit back and let injustice have its way? And, my answer is an emphatic NO. Anyway, I have found some valuable insight as to who’s really in touch with reality, and who’s not, and who’s true friend or foe. I daresay, I’d prefer to NOT be in the “not” group. Henceforth, even though I love to see justice raise it’s beautiful head, where everything is not in black and white but in colors too, for the sake of longevity, I’ll just have to refrain from the protesting and live within the walls/parameters of towing the line. That’s what works best isn’t it?

I hope your little guy recovers from whatever it is that ails him. He has a week off. Chin up, the world is a more beautiful place for the likes o’ you. :)

As for me, Shakespeare says it best, “The lady doth protest, too much, me thinks!” :)


sherose Says:

i though maybe i was crazy insofar as djokovic and his constant retiring because of whatever. obviously i’m not the only 1 who picks up on this. many times when djokovic is behind, he either calls 4 trainer or retires. i am not a djokovic fan, never have been from the first time i saw him playing andy murray at wimbledon. both of these “youngsters” kvetching the whole time they played. since then i have never liked djokovic’s gamemanship. i think he uses it as a ploy. and i’m sorry i saw youtube of federer asking djokovic’s parents 2b quiet. he didn’t throw a temper tantrum or yell, he simply said b quiet. djokovic’s parents were obnoxious @ AO final when tsonga fans were rooting 4 tsonga. they are as annoying as their son. i will never criticize the talent djokovic possesses as a tennis player, but his professionalism, attitude and gamesmanship are little 2b desired. people say federer is washed up. maybe he isn’t going 2b winning the way djokovic is now starting 2 win, but i’ve never seen him retire from a match due 2 illness or being tired. i think djokovic is a poor representative 4 the sport of tennis and although he will most likely b #1 by the end of the season, or next season, it is unfortunate. once he hits #1 the pressure is really going 2b on him week in and week out because everyone will start gunning 4 him not federer.


Mary Says:

First of all – I am honestly and utterly delighted that Nadal has made history. I might not be a “hardcore” Rafa-fan but I admire his game and am very happy that he is the King of clay.

As to Djokovic – his retirement did irritate me yesterday and after his performances throughout the tournament, “giving up” was the LAST thing I expected…. But what irritates me more is that some people decide to call him names and be rude about it. And there is no need to claim that is comes from a country of losers like someone posted here. He is a great sportsman. Just like some people had a go at Federer (who certainly is NOT my favourite player) for not reaching a final until last week – I felt it was rather unbalanced as the guy is a great player and just because he had a bad streak – it does not make him a loser. Mono or not – all of those players are human and it’s ok if they lose or have a bad phase. They are still champions.

Nole backed out and I am pretty sure there was/is a very good reason to it. Do people really think ANY of those players would just give up a match like that… I don’t think so. For them it’s not about the money, it’s about the game – you don’t walk off court for no valid reason. Djokovic’s remark “it’s not worth it” was simply meant as in – not worth risking his health (I agree with Debra Gardner) and it is true. I wish Rafa took better care of those knees – I’d rather see him play less matches but be around for the next decade rather than just some more years…

I have been following Djokovic for a while now and he used to have medical time outs due to breathing problems as a Junior as well… I don’t think it’s a trick. And like someone here claimed, he double faults on purpose and uses it as a tactic – PLEASE, there is noooo way a player (no matter what his personality) would make a mistake on purpose!!! Even though he did not look particularly sick, there must have been something reason enough to quit. He is not Number 3 because he makes impressions – he earned those points just like Federer and Nadal and deserves to be there. And Djokovic IS a true fighter – he made Wimbledon such a passionate “battle” last year. He fought FOR every point against Baghdatis & Hewitt. It was awesome, inspiring!!! And prior to retiring in the SF, he always stated in the press conferences that the organisers should change “no tennis on the first Sunday” if they know rain was coming. It made him be on court for so many hours, I was not surprised he was not fit enough. (Federer’s opponent on the other hand gave up (forgot who it was, QF or SF). He really won that first set without even moving a lot – even the commentators noticed that. And he is no quitter – in Shanghai he was so exhausted, I found it a pain to watch the game – he was losing and not playing well… but he did not retire. Against Davydenko – see the match and you can see he retired for obvious reasons.

Who ever says he is arrogant (parents aside, yes they are irritating from time to time)– ok, Federer is quite full of himself as well. He made it a performance to come to Wimbledon 2007 in all his RF gear and undressing on court… then the AO SF against Djokovic where he reminds the umpire that he challenged the ball (a very sharp “Challenge, I said” as if he were THE BOSS and the umpire his servant. I found it very arrogant). In his interviews he can be pretty cocky – not much more different from Djokovic. And thank God the latter openly admits he wants to become Nr. 1 – they all do!!! It’s great they say it, else it’d be pointless. Federer, Nadal, Djokovic – they are all champions and different individuals… There is nothing wrong with Djokovic’s game. He is a great player. And HE IS a champion. He has applauded many a point for his opponents, he has never left the court without shaking hands or paying respect in some way. Ok, he retired a couple of times – well, Federer threw rackets around when he was younger, Murray vomited on court not too long ago, McEnroe – well, a league of his own – they are all great, yes, they all have individual things they could work on (personality, emotional stability, health and fitness) but they are fantastic. I can’t help but particularly admire all those Serbian players (the young Croats as well), who without any prospects, trained and stayed determined to reach the top. So, to people like mirolove and those who just try to pick on things – stop wasting your time, watch some more tennis & appreciate the matches! No one asks you to love a certain player – but pay respect, because no matter what their name & background (Djokovic, Sampras, Roddick, Lendl, Becker, Federer, Graf, Seles, Ivanovic, Hingis etc.) – they love their profession & play(ed) with passion. So, why do some tennis “fans” bear so much hate… Stop it – it’s ok to very much dislike someone but hate tirades are disgraceful.


Von Says:

Skorocel:

“Fed won the 1st set convincingly 6-1, but then at 0-1 in the 2nd, he lost his serve despite leading 40-0, when he firstly acknowledged the line judge’s error and let the point to be replayed (how’s that for a bad sportsmanship, Von?),”

I just barely saw this comment of yours on your post, not reading the whole thing. you’re really going for the jugular aren’t you, dear friend (?)? Well, keep on trucking — no surprises from my end. I won’t say anymore — this way I don’t have to apologize for any emotional mistakes. Be good, if not be careful!


jane Says:

WOW Mary!!

Please, please, please stick around, okay? We need more sound voices of reason like yours around. Thanks for the intelligent and balanced post. Absolutely everything you said makes perfect sense; it’s common sense that the players are all fighters and all individuals, but some people here like to bash some players while they blindly follow others.

There is no need for such hatred. Reasoned analysis, some critical thought, sure. But cruelty etc, is really unwarranted.

You are obviously a tennis fan first and foremost and truly like a breath of fresh air blown onto the court from the water just past.

Cheers


jane Says:

Von,

“I’ll just have to refrain from the protesting and live within the walls/parameters of towing the line.”

Na, you certainly don’t have to tow any lines. Just be yourself. Methinks it’s fine that the lady protests occasionally. :-)


Glenn Says:

Dear Jane,

When I used the word “champion”, I meant “Number 1.” Thanks for your comment to help me clarify.


jety Says:

Djokovic is a champion already.. he would’t be whers he is , if he hadn’t mental strenght..so it’s really useless to say anything different because his result are behind him.. and monfis, murray, gasguet are not even cloes to Djokovic in sort of anything, especially talent.


Nole 2 Says:

Jane
Most people here believe Novak has no problem whatsoever. To those people I say: I wish for you the same health problem that Novak has.


fed is afraid Says:

dchoker’s problem is he is a pansy, just like federer.


I hate this kid Says:

Did Pete Sampras retire against Alex Corretja in the 1996 U.S. Open Quarters? I can’t remember. Oh wait, no! He gutted it out and is a legend. If Federer can play with that huge cyst on his face, Djokovic can bring his freaking inhaler. Thank God Ivonavic and Jankovic have the spine to gut out matches. I hope Djokovic reads these to realize how big of a dork he is.


Glenn Says:

Nole 2,

That was uncalled for. Your are as classless as Djokovic. I haven’t seen anybody here doubt that Djokovic has some health problems sometimes. It’s just that the real champions make the effort DESPITE their health problems.

BTW, to those who think Djokovic is a champion – talent alone doesn’t make a sportsperson a champion.


I like tennis bullies not tennis sissies like Novak Says:

Djokobytch is a disgrace to the sport


speechless Says:

I was brought to this article and comments from another site and found myself laughing hysterically throughout. What the hell kind of drugs are you on Von? You say you aren’t a Fed hater but your posts prove otherwise. You positively despise the man. Reems and reems of nonsense just because he said “be quiet, okay”. You really need to get out more.

And Jane, I’m startled that everyone on here seems to find you so wise especially after complimenting Von on a well balanced post. His posts are about as balanced as a ship in a storm. What a joke.


Nole 2 Says:

To Glenn

I wish for you the same health problem that Novak has.


jane Says:

speechless,

Von’s been posting for a while so I’ve read much of what she’s written and know she usually considers the angles before making statements. I think her view about court etiquette is balanced and agree with her that Roger should’ve refrained from addressing the Djokovic camp directly; if he thought they were being loud he could’ve talked to the ump on change-over. He does have a tendency to be cranky or impatient sometimes on the court. There are other examples, like when he snapped at the ump at the AO semi or lost his patience/cool about Hawkeye at Wimbie. That doesn’t mean I hate him; it’s just true. It’s part of who he is. Frankly those outbursts don’t even bother me because every player loses it at umps etc and that’s fair. But to address his opponent’s family during a match seems a bit much. As I say, go through the ump in this case.

I don’t profess to be wise, and I can certainly see the hilarity in all this, but i try to be fair that’s all. In your case, to suddenly drop in at this blog and make a quip about an on-going conversation seems a little short-sighted.


craig Says:

Novak has lung problems and if he can’t overcome them he will have spotty performances. Like winning IW but losing first round Miami. Last year winning Montreal losing Cincy first round, etc. He might have to limit the amount of tournaments he enters.

Same with Federer and his on-again off -again mono.


jane Says:

Von also mentioned a double-standard regarding behaviour on April 27th at 1:00 am in her response to Ryan; if you read that post without rose-colored glasses, you’ll see it’s balanced. It’s true that some players are attacked vociferously (Djok here; Roddick in the past) while Roger get a pass for virtually anything from some of his fans.

That’s not true though for all of Roger’s fans; many of them are quite sane and intelligent and can acknowledge when he says or does something that may not be classy. Many, for instance, agreed that his comments after losing to Murray may’ve been too harsh or ill-considered. Some might even agree he is a cranky soul at times.

But isn’t that the sign of a true fan? One who takes the good with the bad.


jane Says:

craig,

I agree. I also agree with Sean and others that Novak may not be able to be a number 1 contender if he doesn’t solve these health issues. I hope he can; I like his game.


Glenn Says:

Nole2,

Thank you for proving my point!

Craig,

I think Federer needs the matchplay. He was out of it for a while, and he’s steadily improved BECAUSE he, like a true champion, toughs it out. Hitting a tennis ball might be like riding a bike, but you can’t be #1 without constant practice.

Also, though he might not do well in a tourney because of his health, he is still getting some points, which will help in maintaining his #1 status.


Glenn Says:

Craig,

I also want to point out that in a post-match interview after his win over Nalbandian, Federer commented that he is re-learning his tennis, IIRC. So getting the matches does help a lot.


fed is afraid Says:

dchoker and federer are both lightweights, neither will ever match up to the great nadal.


jane Says:

fed is afraid,

broken record much? we all repeat ourselves sometimes – me probably too much – but you might try adding to your repertoire a little. :-)


fed is afraid Says:

federer only has 12 slams because most of the guys he beat except for nadal were tomato cans. and if the playing field had been even at wimbledon last year nadal would have won, heck he almost won with it being blatenly unfair.


Glenn Says:

Dear Danica,

Danica Says:
Hm, I know that Djokovic applauds his opponents quite often. On the other side, he is not giving them enough credit in post match conferences.

That Federer applauds a shot by Djokovic is in a class all its own because everyone perceives Roger and Novak to be arch-nemeses. That demonstrates how classy Federer truly is.


jane Says:

fed is afraid,
I’m curious what you mean by “blatantly” unfair?

I agree with you that Rafa could’ve – and probably should’ve – won Wimbie last year; I think many people would agree he was there and had a great shot. But he had a couple of break points in the 5th on which he didn’t capitalize.


Sean Randall Says:

I’m not seeing a lot of support for Novak. Maybe he just doesn’t have that many fans, or the fans he does have aren’t with him on this one.

A few things to clear up. I know many of you have pointed out that Novak did retire with a 2-1 set lead over Davydenko in D-Cup. While on paper he was ahead in reality he wasn’t. He had just blown the third set, he felt exhausted and now faced a lengthy battle with a revived Davydenko. He was not in a winning position in my mind when he quit.

Also, some of you say that this a legitimate illness. And that’s fine. And I believe it. But get it checked out. Go see a few doctors. Again, you have money, take a few months off if you to and see what can be done to overcome it. Do you really want to do retire at the French or Wimbledon? I can only imagine the wrath you would incur…


fed is afraid Says:

nadal played 7 straight days, roger was off 5 straight days, instead of playing on the middle sunday, they had off, nad nadal could have finished his match with soderling, i believe it was instead of it being dragged out for numerous days due to rain. if rafa had been as rested as roger, he wins wimbledon.


jane Says:

Glenn,

When Federer won the USO, Novak hugged him at the net and clapped warmly when Roger lifted the trophy. I would hasten a guess that Novak has applauded a shot or two of Roger’s in his day.

In my opinion, Djokovic’s parents are the problem sometimes, in that they push him too much and say overbearing things.

I also think the press hypes up comments made by players, thereby hyping up a kind of rivalry.

Probably Roger & Novak will never by close or even friendly but they seem to have mutual respect from one another’s games, if nothing else.


jane Says:

On that point, I agree with you 110% fed is afraid!!

And I know you don’t think much of Novak, but the same applies to him in terms of his Wimbledon retirement. He had played marathon matches against both Hewitt and Baggy and had injured his back and acquired infected blisters in the latter match, which was one of the longest ever. He was spent.

He’s not as physically strong as Rafa and thankfully has learned to shorten his matches by playing more aggressively.

But it’s true that Rafa was injured in the 4th (?) set, with the knee issue that plagued him all the way throughout the US Open, and that’s in part because of the DUMB scheduling at Wimbledon where they should’ve played on the 1st Sunday.

Sometimes, you gotta chuck tradition out the window.


Sean Randall Says:

Zola, I do moderate, what have I missed??


fed is afraid Says:

maybe novak should tell him mother to stop making comments to press, even gloria connors was not as obnoxious as mrs. djoker is.

future will tell on djoker, if he winds up with numerous slams or winds up like safin, much potential but never fulfulled it.


jane Says:

“Again, you have money, take a few months off if you to and see what can be done to overcome it. ”

But this is part of the problem Sean.

Look at Federer, he took virtually no time off even though he had mono, a serious virus, for which he received some criticism for not taking time to heal, but mainly he is praised for playing through it. Similarly, while Djokovic has had surgery, the problem doesn’t seem to be completely solved. Maybe there’s more to it? But he plays on. Obviously, he reason they don’t take time off is that, at #1 and #3 respectively, there is too much at stake. Same with Rafa playing the US Open utterly hobbled last year.

They’re all looking at the short term and not the long term, and maybe that’s the way it is in tennis, since tennis careers are relatively short.

But Novak’s 6 retirements over the course of about 2 years (06-08) are noticed and criticized a lot because they’ve happened at some high profile moments and because he’s worked his way to #3.Others have probably retired 6 times in the last 2 years (?) but we don’t hear about it because of where/when they happen and their status. In addition, Novak incurs wrath probably because he’s bold, or even arrogant to some, and therefore he’s already offended some people. Add to that his retirements, whether they’re considered thoughtfully or not, and you get pretty much what this thread has illustrated – a lot of criticism and sometimes outright hatred.

I guess only time will tell what Novak’s made of, but I like his moxy and his game and wish the best for him.


ferix Says:

I’ve defended Djokovic in the past for retiring against Davydenko in Davis Cup (on that occasion, he was really very sick), but as I was watching the semifinal, I felt very disappointed in him. My natural reaction was to shake my head and utter a profanity.

Thinking more about it though, I have softened my stance.

Many posters are saying he should have toughed it out, even if it meant playing half-arsed for three more games. But is that really a good thing? How is that a “treat” or “giving respect” to his fans? If he has mentally and physically given up, there is a good case for him to retire, isn’t there?

I am not sure I know what the answer is to this one.

Posters have also listed examples of Serena, Sampras, and others toughing matches out. They forget that those epic / classic matches were Grand Slam matches – as opposed to the first clay tournament of the season. It’s comparing apples and oranges.

Djokovic would have known that, with his illness, he would struggle to win after losing the first set. He then tried to give it a shot in the second – he was broken, broke back, and broken again. In his mind, he “fought” and “toughed” it for 5 games. He failed so he then gave up. At that stage, if he continued and simply shanked forehands and rolled backhands for 3 more games, then frankly … I rather he retired.

p.s. the ugliest and worse retirement ever was Justine Henin in the AO final against Mauresmo. That was a GS final and would have been Mauresmo’s first GS title. What a selfish and insensitive act by Henin. Disgraceful. I’m obviously still not over that one.


I like tennis bullies not tennis sissies like Novak Says:

one thing for sure is that federer does not respect djokovic at all either his game or his personality and the feeling is mutual


Von Says:

speechless:

I’m speechlessz too. How naive can you be? There’s a simple answer to my “reems”(sic) of writing as you stated, which I’ve mentioned before.

At the AO, I defended Fed, because of the comments made by Dkoko’s parent, and I was not once reprimanded by the Fed group; I was defending their guy. Now it’s the reverse, and I don’t like what Fed did and I’m airing my views, I’m the despicable one by every Fed fan. Summation, you Fed fans only want for people to laud praises on him — everything is just black and white; you don’t allow for colors, do you? I think you are the ones who should get out more. One-sided comments in favor of Fed are OK, not objective views. Have a nice day, and I hope you can wake up soon, or, maybe you don’t want that, do you?.


Von Says:

jane: Thanks for everything — I know you understand from where i’m coming.

“But isn’t that the sign of a true fan? One who takes the good with the bad.”

Absolutely. While I appreciate my own fave, I also am, even in defending him, when some become too carried away, state: I’m not in favor of his bad behavior. It’s akin to a parent with his/her children. Aren’t there flaws in these little darlings, who can be complete monsters at one time and angels the next? But, we love them anyway. But, there are some parents who don’t want to acknowledge that their child has a flaw — they view as a poor reflection on them. So too, some of the Fed fans are selective in their ability to admit he has flaws and can behave like a jerk, just like some of the other players. But, it’s better to deny it than come to grips with it — an easier way out. One less facet to handle.


bob22 Says:

To Glenn:
Glenn Says:

Bad parenting is only part of it. Djokovic is smug and arrogant. That’s his personality.

What do you know about parenting? If you have children, compare your life acheavment as a parent with Dokovic’s parents! With thouse statements you just show your bad personality.


craig Says:

In my opinion, Djokovic’s parents are the problem sometimes, in that they push him too much and say overbearing things.

JANE
Mike Agassi was the worst overbearing tennis parent there was and his son was an arrogant ass. He changed as he aged. Novak’s parents? I do not hear one peep of criticism over what Richard Williams said about white people and certain players. No one is saying they don’t like Serena because of her dad.
“But if you get some little white no-good trasher in America like Tracy Austin or Chris Evert who cannot hit the ball, they will claim this is great”

No, Fed fans can’t be bothered by what THAT tennis parent says.Honestly I think the real problem with most Federer fans is if Novak and Rafa dominate hard and clay he’s got less time then he thinks to break Sampras’ record. Somehow I think his fans sense this in the back of their minds which explains their angry behavior.

Frankly, Fed is a good player but he is such a girly boy with that purse and the way he wears a suit onto court at Wimbledon– it’ pretty pathetic.


Von Says:

craig:

“Honestly I think the real problem with most Federer fans is if Novak and Rafa dominate hard and clay he’s got less time then he thinks to break Sampras’ record. Somehow I think his fans sense this in the back of their minds which explains their angry behavior.”

You’ve said it. I’m afraid to speak more, because I’ll be burned to cinders. There’s that anxiety factor that’s borderline crankiness, in that, they’re just so anxious for him to be the ‘GOAT” and he’s not yet realizing this dream — the anxiety has become borderline fear. And, the more he falters, the more they’ll become fearfu;. A domino effect indeed. To me, it seems to be some kind of that parent satisfaction raising its ugly head again, of ‘my boy did it’. Well, it’ll be some time on the horizon, but not just yet. Some are ready to give him the GOAT title if he only wins the FO and forget Sampras’ 14 slame, plus his many years at No. 1, etc., or another era.

Contrary to what my critics write about my dislike for ‘some’ of Fed’s behaviors, I realy don’t ‘hate’ him at all. I can see many good aspects of his game, and appreciate that, and I do mention them. But the dislike becomes more intensified when I witness the injustice that’s portrayed against the other players, and how they are virtually roasted to coals, andx his is overlooked. It’s sick.


Mary Says:

Hi Jane,

thanks for your posts – all of them! And Ferix,good post as well! I agree (see my previous post) – he would not have given that match up just like that. All of those players are not only aware of the fact that the ATP can “strike”, that fans turn against them, that players start disliking them – they are also aware of the media that can lift them up or.. destroy them. I guess, when he made that decision to “quit” he knew what he was doing. He must have known he’d get slayed in the press…. He’d get a bad reputation. Hence, I just think he must have been bad enough to just leave the final to two other players.
(And yes – when Tommy Hass retired just now in Indian Wells and Federer got a walk over.. no one commented at all… And he was bloody good the day before – and next day – Tommy has a sinus infection. As great players as they are – they can just feel sick one day. Us, with our non athletic jobs – also get ill and just stay at home… Those guys get hardly any time off throughout the year.. They cannot allow themselves to rest, even off season, They have to train. So, let’s just put it all in perspective – Djokovic is barely out of his teens and he has climbed the rankings within a year like no one else! Give him a little bit of credit. No need to love him but also no need to hate him.

As to Nadal – the good man is playing Barcelona now and then Roma etc. He should really know better and look after his knees or else we will see less of a great player over the next five years due to his attitude “I will fight until the bitter end” – I’d be very sad


jane Says:

Craig,

There’s been threads on Mr. Williams, and I have stated my dislike of both him AND Mr. Sharapova.

As for Djokovic’s parents – while I actually appreciate and have defended their close-knit family, I just think that maybe they need to let Novak speak for himself. What his mother said post USO final has to put a little pressure on Novak (“he will win the next time he plays in a GS against Federer”), even if she did turn out to be right!

I don’t know much about Mike Agassi so I won’t comment on that except to say that you’re correct; Andre Agassi is a lovely man.

I hope Novak matures in such a manner; I can see the warmth and humour in his personality already so I am sure he will. I also hope he can overcome his health issues and let that game of his speak for itself.

I think there are *some* Federer fans that have the issues of which you speak, but there are many who are more balanced.


Mary Says:

Oh, here is the video I mentioned in my first post – Federer being rather off-ish and arrogant…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VNqddBBsqfA


jane Says:

Mary – noticed how Roger also shouted “come on” in that clip when Djok’s shot went long. I guess many player might do this from time-to-time, but I have heard it criticized before, especially with relation to Hewitt, as being unsportsmanlike. I’m not sure it’s that, but it does show Roger’s cranky side. He’s not always the gentleman applauding his opponents shots, in other words.


Mary Says:

That’s it Mary! I really admire Federer for all his achievments, I like his game but so many people choose not to see that he is not always the perfectly behaved man. That’s ok I think, but those comments – oh, he is o classy, no one can keep up. It really is not true. In fact, I have to admit, I miss the yougner Federer, who used to show his joy more, joke around on court (there is this one game with Hingis, where he playes the guitar on his racket) – I actually preferred the early 20-ies Roger. He had more zest, showed more personality without being overly arrogant. I try to watch all the tournaments and you get to see more of their characteristics over the time… Watching just two grand slams and one masters, won’t give people a good insight really

And as to arrogance – Jesus, McEnroe used to go ballistic, he had such anger managment problems and yet he is a legend. (And despite all his negatives, I love the guys – he lvoes tennis!!!) And again – just because Djokovic quits, he is not a loser, faker or undeservedly World Number Three.


anel Says:

to sean randall:
there is a lot of support for NOVAC but your comments are so full of hate and are uncorect so we think there is no point to argue with you.


craig Says:

Some have already pointed out the span between Sampras’ first GS, and Agassi’s too, I believe.

Jane 3 years for Pete and 2 years for Andre.

And don’t forget people do retire, even in the finals of Grand Slams (Henin against Mauresmo), semifinals (Nalbandian in the semies at RG 2006 against, Federer) or other finals (last week Davydenko surrenderd to, you guessed – Federer in Estoril).
Braca
And don’t forget Haas in IW and Soderling in Miami

I might not be a “hardcore” Rafa-fan but I admire his game and am very happy that he is the King of clay.
Mary same here although I love Novak’s overall game.

You’ve said it. I’m afraid to speak more, because I’ll be burned to cinders
Von now I will get tarred and feathered? LOL That’s OK, I’m still new here.

Contrary to what my critics write about my dislike for ’some’ of Fed’s behaviors, I realy don’t ‘hate’ him at all.
Von I agree with you on this. Before Novak broke through last year, Fed was one of my faves. The tuxedo suit at the US open, Wimbledon jackets, man purses,etc — this kind of thing bug me.

From 1988 a good report on Andre and his dad.
http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=940DE6DF173EF933A05753C1A96E948260&sec=&spon=&pagewanted=all


Von Says:

I came across the following from another site. Whoo-hoo, it seems that I’m not so crazy after all, as my critics feel. An authoritative person wrote this article, which was headlined: “Likely Factors that led to Djokovic prematurely retiring at Monte Carlo”, and a few are listed below. I’m not good at copying links, and considering its length, I just copied a few paragraphs.

The folowing was one of my points in my post on Saturday, re Djoko’s upset about his parents, for which I drew a lot of heat and was dubbed “crazy, and needing a psychiatrist.” It’s OK guys, I know that I’m more sane than some of you, and open-minded, if I might add. But, all you’re doing, is deterring analytical views from being presented. However, from my short time blogging on this site, it’s usually been the modus operandi. A closed-minded way of dealing with facts. Gang up and then break her. Enjoy the reading.

-Parent factor: Federer addressing Djokovic’s parents to keep quiet, had to have figured somewhere in the picture. I mean, considering how closely knit the family appears to be, it must have sent Djokovic’s blood boiling. The only way he could get back to Federer was to defeat him once again and deny another shot at a final of a prestigious event. But he was unable to summon his game hampered by the best tennis flowing from Federer’s racket.

So not only was he seething with anger over his parents taking that humiliation, but he was taking a second whammy by getting blown off the court. The only way then, to get back to Federer was to take away all the thunder from under Federer’s win, by denying him the opportunity and the satisfaction of beating Djokovic in straight sets. He also might have thought of the previous three retirements Federer experienced to no good affect this year.

He knew very well, based on his previous track record in such situations, that he will be just asking for the wrath of fans worldwide, but at that point he couldn’t care. The insult from the two headed monster (Federer’s jab at his parents and losing in straight sets after that) more than covered and justified the booing of the fans he was expecting.

He chose the route that at least diminished the impact of the loss while taking away from Federer his rightful due and maybe impacting his performance in the finals against Nadal. By doing so, he at least felt he was able to get back at Federer for insulting his parents and for demolishing his best effort. He probably would have done what he did, even if he was told in advance that he will be fined heavily if he withdrew. Nothing could have outweighed the anger and frustration he felt at that moment.

-Illness: It’s hard to imagine that there was absolutely nothing happening to Djokovic physically. It surely may not have been as drastic to merit a pull out with just couple games remaining, but might have been sharp enough to disallow his absolute ‘A’ game against the ‘in the zone’ Federer. If he made reference to seeing the doctor few days ago without actually doing it, he needs to take up acting seriously.


Bojan Says:

Contradictions:

Novak retired match against Nikolay Davydenko in Moscow after leading 2 sets to 1. One day before he played doubles under temperature. After that he went to France, changed time zone, traveled a lot, wasn’t being recovered completely, and still carried that 2nd round match and lost decently.

Novak retired in Umag FINAL before the tiebreak. That’s irrational thing to do, isn’t it, even for him?

Novak carried all three matches in Shanghai, although it was obvious that he isn’t feeling good on the court, and that his game totally fell apart. But he played and lost in all of those matches.

Novak played 4 hours and 12 minutes match against Lleyton Hewitt, and the day AFTER he played Marcos Baghdatis for 5 HOURS! He completed both maches. Not to mention 3 day match in opening rounds against Kiefer!

If you watch closely Novak DID have problems in matches against Ljubicic and Murray. The sign he’s having difficulties is when he lifts racket with both arms breathing heavily.

And some of these comments are really partial. Imitating Novak by retiring. Snappish! If that’s the only thing you noticed about Novak’s game, then I think you should watch closely. I hope my arguments were good enough to watch the story from the other angle.

Cheers!


Von Says:

craig:

“Von I agree with you on this. Before Novak broke through last year, Fed was one of my faves. The tuxedo suit at the US open, Wimbledon jackets, man purses,etc — this kind of thing bug me.”

I’m not a Fed or Djoko fan, but I’m one of those people who is called a protester. Give me a picket for justice and I’m there. You’re funny though and I like humor. :) So keep on a truckin and a smilin!! :)


Glenn Says:

To Bob22:

I’m not the one who made the comment about “bad parenting.” I noticed SEVERAL made the accusation, and given how classless his parents are, I figure there must be something to that. But I did not want to make “bad parenting” the sole excuse for Novak’s character….but maybe I should.

Thanks for your comments.


Glenn Says:

Dear Jane,

Whatever happened after USO does not really affect my perception of Djokovic. I read someone opine that Djokovic is a showman who needs to be well-liked. It’s possible he hugged Federer “just for the crowd.” It’s also possible he was genuine towards Federer.

A wise friend once told me that you find out the REAL personality of a person WHILE you are playing sports. Djokovic’s antics DURING the game (I’m not talking about just the USO) do not make me believe he was genuine in his “hug.”

I do agree with you that the media might have something to do with how people perceive a rivalry. I also think that the presence of Novak’s parents clouds the picture somewhat. Maybe Djokovic is really a class “A” act, but his parents’ influence/presence is causing him to lose fans. I don’t know, but I’d like to stick to my original estimation of judging a sportsfigure PRIMARILY by his actions DURING a game, instead of outside of it.

I’ll be honest with you – when Djokovic was FIRST making headlines, I was a fan of his. But as time progressed, and you saw just what an arrogant ass he was/is …


Glenn Says:

Bojan,

You have given good info. But it will not change people’s perspectives about Djokovic not having what it takes to be #1. He’s being too inconsistent for people to have confidence in him (of course, I’m sure Serbians would have the obligatory confidence for a fellow countryman).


Von Says:

Glenn:

“I don’t know, but I’d like to stick to my original estimation of judging a sportsfigure PRIMARILY by his actions DURING a game, instead of outside of it.”

This is so very true, some are able to handle pressure better than others. But, one can only see the mettle of which anorther is made, when that person is placed in a pressure situation. ‘Grace under fire’, a truer statement cannot be found. Additionally, children are a reflection of their parents, and arrogance, albeit not innate, is an acquired trait. Who knows, it can be innate — but the theory has not been proven.

I don’t agree that because a parent has given much toward a child’s future gives those parents the prerogative to be devoid of class — they’re just setting their child up for a huge fall. It’s similar to the very rich and/or celebrities who feel that they can behave like classless jerks but all is forgiven because they have the money and/or fame. It comes under the umbrella of ‘celebrity entitlement’, however, it’s a very potent prescription for self-destruction. Stay tuned for as the world turns, and only time will tell … until then ….


Bojan Says:

Ok, Glenn, then what are we supposed to think about Serena for smashing her racket, swearing and so on. Federer behaves arrogant on the court as well, Nadal and many others. I find Novak not more arrogant than Fed or Rafa.

And your theory about Novak acting everything… you know.. if you dislike someone you can come up with 1000 reasons to hate him. And this one is lame :)

I mean how many times he admitted aces to his opponents although the ball was called out? I have seen that a dozens of times.

I absolutely agree, that he’s still too weak to be no.1, and that he’s inconsistent (one tournament title – the following early defeat). He needs to work on that, but however there are some things that upset me in this article, and I’m not ‘to die for’ Novak’s fan. It’s a dose of sensationalism, making Novak look like the only thing he does is retiring. Before that, it was his bouncing. Now that he reduced bouncing it’s this. You know, people always find something.
And the thing with Novak’s parents… I really don’t like them, but what Fed did wasn’t really a nice gesture. First of all, they are at least older than him, he should respect that fact. They weren’t obstructing him during the game, they probably made some comments, like the other at least 100 ppl.


Bojan Says:

…after the ball was called out.

And about sensationalism, there’s one more article that was made a top story, about Novak calling Brits spoiled. That was just about 10 sentences taken out of context, from an interview he did.

I guess Novak reached his moment of truth. We’ll see how will he handle the pressure, but something tells me he’ll use all of this and turn it into his favor. :P


Bojan Says:

And btw, few mentioned how good this match was!
This was the first time I enjoyed Fed’s game (when he plays against Novak). They surely had incredible tempo!

We can chit-chat till tomorrow about who will be next no.1 and then wake up one day and find some third person actually sitting on the throne. I don’t really care about rankings, the only thing I do care is good tennis. Since, I’m hones fan of Novak (the one that can criticize him as well) the only thing I care is him playing at least as he played so far.

And btw, one more thing forgotten, great beginning of clay season & this is his first semi @ ATP masters on clay ;)


Skorocel Says:

To Von:

Quite interesting – that post which you wrote on April 28th, 2008 at 9:36 pm… Anyway, regardless of who may have written that article, I would like to point out 3 things:

1. Fed DIDN’T insult Djoker’s parents at all!
2. Fed certainly WASN’T “in the zone” (at least in that 2nd set)!
3. If that Fed’s message to his parents could’ve been a reason for Djoker to retire (in order to spoil the Swiss’s joy of victory, of course), then why the hell he retired vs Nadal at RG 2006, Wimby 2007, vs Wawrinka in Umag 2006, or Coria at RG 2005 – where there no one ever barked at his parents?


speechless Says:

Von,

“Summation, you Fed fans only want for people to laud praises on him – everything is just black and white, you don’t allow for colors, do you. I think you are the ones who should get out more, One- sided comments in favour of Fed are OK, not objective views.”

Truly sad. Where oh where did I give any indication in my previous post that I was a Fed fan? Open minded – you don’t know the meaning.

Jane,

“In your case to suddenly drop in at this blog and make a quip about an on going conversation seems a little shortsighted.”

Short- sighted? In what way pray tell. It’s a blog that invites comments. I didn’t read one entry and then make a “quip”, I read everything from the beginning and left an opinion as I’m entitled to do. To enter a conversation you have to make a first comment. That’s the way it works.


Skorocel Says:

fed is afraid said:

“…nadal could have finished his match with soderling, i believe it was instead of it being dragged out for numerous days due to rain.”

There you go, my friend! Rafa was leading the Swede 2 sets to love and COULD have finished him off BEFORE that rain came out, BUT the fact is that he couldn’t, so please stop complaining, OK?


jane Says:

speechless,

OK, glad to see you’re not “speechless” after all. What I meant by short-sighted was more like expedient. i.e., it’s easy to come into a very lengthy conversation and make a judgement -for instance, calling me unwise or Von unbalanced- but to actually *engage* in the conversation is different.

Ask a question, express an opinion about the *subject matter* (i.e., the article to which we’re responding) rather than judging the people writing about it; that’s all I meant by short-sighted.

By all means, join in! I’d love to hear what you think about Djokovic’s retirement or health problems and so on.


jane Says:

Glenn -

Thanks for your reply; you’re right that we’ll just have to wait and see about Novak. As to your comments about “during” match behaviour, well, often Novak is quite gracious (I recall how recently against Mardy Fish, when Novak’s Serbian fans were noisy, Novak gave first serve back to Mardy).

Bojan –

Thanks for the information you’ve provided; you seem like a good fan of Novak’s – able to see the good and bad, yet still hope for the best.

Cheers!


jane Says:

Von -

It’s nice to know there are people out there in the world of the same mind isn’t it? Interesting article you posted. Keep on keeping on! ;-)


Von Says:

jane:

“It’s nice to know there are people out there in the world of the same mind isn’t it? Interesting article you posted.”

Yes, it’s refreshing and also a relief to know that there are people who can see through situations in different mind-sets, that’s where psychology can be helpful. It was an interesting article, but very lengthy, and not being a computer whiz, (for some reason, when I right click, my computer program does not allow me to copy, same with spell check) I can’t copy links. I think I messed up something.

“Keep on keeping on!” I don’t know about this, it’s becoming very difficult, you could say I’ve become fainthearted or just turned off. We’ll see what happens. But, you should “Keep on keeping on!” :) I’ve never been what can be called one with a “customer service” personality. I honestly do respect those who do have the patience though.


Twocents Says:

If it’s acceptable that Djok quit becasue of illness + mom/dad being offended (for good reason), it’s also acceptable that Federer quit AO’08 semi because of illness + being constantly hasseled by courtside mom/dad offense. Guess Roger was just way too dumb to avert a straight set loss into a quitter.

I’d watch my wallet to buy any pro tennis tickets when there are enough of (too) smart ones on top…


Danny Says:

Too bad all of these people who are expert tennis analysts / success coaches / psychologists are too busy cutting hair and driving taxi cabs.

How many major tennis tournaments did you guys win by the age of 20?


anel Says:

Thank YOU Danny,You just said what I was thinking to ask Shean Rendall if he had at least similar success as Novak at age of 20,so that he knows what is the best for Novac to do.At first I was unhappy because Novak was not strong enough to finish second set,but after I read all these comments full of hate[peaple that really should see psycholgists are advising Novak to see one]I am hapy because he made these peaple to be upset.They are upset because Novak is so good tennis player at age of 20.


MrXLABeach Says:

I just read an interesting article on player retirements. Seems that Federer and Blake are the only top 10 players who haven’t retired. Djo leads all (in %):

http://www.tennis.com/features/general/features.aspx?id=127724


Glenn Says:

Dear Jane,

Mardy Fish aside (BTW, who WOULDN’T be respectful to such a nice guy like Mardy Fish!), being sportsmanlike to a guy you have a great likelihood of beating is a different kettle of fish than being sporstmanlike towards your main rivals (yes, and I mean DURING matchplay).

I know you like Djokovic, and I’m sorry if you are not convincing me of his good character. Rest assured, I have changed my mind about other players for whom I had no respect in the beginning. And that’s because they changed. If Djokovic changes, I’ll support him again. Until then, I ain’t no fan of his, and I’ll enjoy his losses more than his wins. Please don’t read that as meaning I would LIKE for him to lose – IOW, if he wins, I’d think he deserves it, but would not be happy; if he loses, I’d think he deserves it and I would be happy.


jane Says:

Glenn,

Fair enough; thanks for responding and meanwhile I’ll just hope for the day Djoko changes your mind.

If you’re interested, there is a recent televised BBC sport interview available online in which Novak says he thinks Roger is a nice guy, that he respects him, that he thinks their relationship is fair and that he thinks Roger’s dominance is by no means over but that Roger just had a rough patch to begin the year. The interview is post-Miami, pre-MC.

I think Djoko will try to change but we’ll have to wait and see.


jane Says:

Djokovic has tested positive for strep throat; I’ve had it and it’s not fun. He’s still on antibiotics and has requested a Wednesday start for Rome, hoping he’ll be better by then. But there’s a chance he’ll pull out as he’s still not 100% well.

Some people might (?) want to re-think their harsh comments.


jane Says:

It’s worth noting, too, that Almagro has been sick and Kohl’s pulled out of Rome due to flu; I’d imagine a number of bugs travels between these players in the locker rooms etc.


Von Says:

jane: “I’d imagine a number of bugs travels between these players in the locker rooms etc.”

When they shake hands after a match also. their hands are sweaty and viruses love that environment. As I’ve said before, if they are sick stay in bed.


Federer Shuts Down Djokovic, Shuts Up Djokovic’s Parents « Dad They Broke Me Says:

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