Murray My Pick to Beat Federer Today in US Open Final
by Sean Randall | September 8th, 2008
  • 46 Comments

That’s right, and my reasoning is simple. I think Andy Murray is playing better tennis right now than Roger Federer is, so I like the Scot to surprise the Swiss and capture the US Open title in the final which begins in a little less than an hour from now.

The occasion, the stage of playing in a Grand Slam final may very well catch up to Andy, that’s true, but after Murray beat Rafa – a player he had never beaten before – over two days, and after earlier this summer he came through and won Cincinnati, I actually think he’s ready to take his game to the highest level.

And I think he’s peaking at the right time. Murray’s moving great, hitting the ball crisply and serving as well as he ever has. He’s playing at the highest level he ever has. And he comes in with the confidence of having two very convincing wins over the two best players this summer, Juan Martin Del Potro and then Nadal in the last week.

Is Federer playing the best tennis we’ve ever seen from him? I don’t think so. Even though Fed’s enjoying his best week on hardcourts this year, I still don’t think he’s at the heights he was at just a year ago, and certainly not where he was a few years ago when he was dominating. Yes, the competition has improved, but he still looks a smidge slower and the errors are creeping in more than ever.

And while Murray has really played some sparkling tennis since recovering from a 2-0 set hole to Jurgen Melzer, in my mind Federer hasn’t put together anything special in his last three matches.

Igor Andreev was an impressive win, no doubt, but the Russian wasn’t mentally ready to close the deal and beat the Swiss at a Slam. Gilles Muller played well, but he’s Gilles Muller, and the man I picked to beat Roger, Novak Djokovic, may indeed have been tired like he said, he did look flat to me.

But credit to Fed for getting through, he still had to win the matches to arrive at the final today and he did just that.

Murray, though, won’t be afraid to deliver the knockout punch against Fed, after all he’s beaten him twice before. Both Murray wins one could argue were suspect – once in the summer a few years back when Federer looked disinterested and another coming this year in Dubai during the alleged mono period – but that debate aside those victories can only help his confidence.

Murray also has the baseline game that we’ve seen give Fed a lot trouble on hardcourts this summer. The recipe is well known, get enough balls back and either wait for the error or attack the short ball. At the Open, Andreev had Fed on the ropes with his heavy groundies, and even the little-known qualifier Thiago Alves was giving Fed a hard time from the backcourt.

Earlier this summer we saw Gilles Simon and Robby Ginepri get the better of Fed when trading groundstrokes. Murray, one could argue, is a better version of Simon, with even more variety and cunning plus a much bigger serve and more power off both wings.

And much will be made of Fededer’s day off while Murray had to work overtime Sunday. But Murray’s a young kid and he talks repeatedly of all the training he’s done. And now his chance to show that he is indeed among the fittest players around.

If Murray does get into a winning position, it will get dicey as we saw yesterday, so that’s another trouble area for the Scot. He’ll need to improve his break points conversion ratio to have a chance today given the stakes. And I think he will.

Fed of course could rise to the occasion, as great champs do, and play a scintillating tennis to win Slam No. 13. But as I said at the start of the tournament, the trend for Fed at least on hardcourts has been down, and even though he’s enjoyed an upswing these two weeks I don’t think its enough to trump the surging Murray who if he can stay the course, keep his head, should win this one in four or maybe even in straight sets.


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46 Comments for Murray My Pick to Beat Federer Today in US Open Final

S Green Says:

I agree to a large extent of Murray’s chance, Sean. If I were to put money, it’d on on Murray. But if Fed serves immaculately, Murray won’t have many chances to break.


JB Says:

I’m amazed at the new lows that can be acheived in tennis broadcasting. Can’t watch it live in San Diego. The streaming site appears to be hosed. What a rip!!!


Giner Says:

Does anyone hit the ball harder than Murray does? I’m amazed he doesn’t hit more errors than he does.


S Green Says:

At this point of match (Murray serving for tie breaker in the 2nd), Federer seems to be inching in for his 13th Slam. It could be a straight set win for him.


Shan Says:

Fed up 2 sets to love, another incorrect prediction


Sean Randall Says:

Who said Murray was going to win? Ha. Can I change my pick?

This is abuse.


S Green Says:

Congratulations to Fed for his 5th USO and 13th Slam !
What a performance by Fed ! It is his absolute resurrection, as good as the beginning of 2007.
This win marks the 2nd wave of Fed era.


that matt Says:

CBS is not showing the US Open Mens Tennis Final on TV. Instead they are showing “Guiding Light.” A soap opera.


Daniel Says:

The first set played was his best in a long time. The second he wasn’t serving well, 57 % first serves, but came trough in the right time. The third, I am starting to fell embarassed for Murray, after he made the worst (taking Nadal), losing 6-1 or 6-0 in the third is just not fair!


S Green Says:

that matt,
Not in my location.

And, btw, it was only an ok final, below the level of minimum expectation, and the last set was disappointing effort from Murray. So, you did not really miss any thing.


that matt Says:

I’m watching it online at usopen.org. Btw, Murray just took one of the two breaks back. 5-2 3rd set.


S Green Says:

Daniel,
Fed definitely served better in the 1st set, but I liked his shots better in the 2nd.


Von Says:

All of you who have CBS HD the match was broadcasted on that channel.

OH my, Poor Andy. he looks like the picture of exhaustion.


andrea Says:

andy just went away there in the third set….bit of a shame. some of the best points ever at the US Open he played against Nadal yesterday.

my prediction was roger would win this.

congrats for #5!

anyone else feel that the US Open may be Nadal’s nemesis event? kinda like the french for Roger?


S Green Says:

Von,
How am I doing as a reborn so far?


Vulcan Says:

Well I hate to say I told you so…but…
That was an awesome display of hardcourt tennis by Federer in thrashing Murray.


Federer Masters Murray, Seizes Fifth US Open Title Says:

[...]  Murray My Pick to Beat Federer Today in US Open Final [...]


NachoF Says:

S Green Says:

Von,
How am I doing as a reborn so far?

Shut up man… less than 5 days ago you were calling Federer a loser…. He definitely does not want you as a fan…. go somewhere else to cry about your “misunderstood” Djokovic.


mem Says:

what a pity! all that talent! no surprise to me! I’ve seen it all before. players jump up and down and run all around to beat rafa. come back the next day or two, play roger like an amateur, then gets in the postmatch interview and say how unbeatable roger is! if he’s that unbeatable, why is it that rafa can beat him consistently? no excuse, andy! you have the goods.


NachoF Says:

mem Says:

“what a pity! all that talent! no surprise to me! I’ve seen it all before. players jump up and down and run all around to beat rafa.”

Dont forget that Roger also had to jump up and down to beat Djokovic.


gary Says:

While the writer makes a good case in predicting Andy would win, this comprehensive win shows you what a unique champion Roger is. He had scary moments in the past two weeks but winning the big points, especially the last point, is what counts. His hold at 0-40 in the 2nd set was huge. A last note: when he says he got sick with mono there should be no doubt he was. To my memory, he has never used an injury, real or invented, as excuse for losing. The use of the word “alleged” in the article is mean-spirited and disrespectful of a great champion on and off court.


Giner Says:

“anyone else feel that the US Open may be Nadal’s nemesis event? kinda like the french for Roger?”

It’s hard to make a guess like this at age 22 in his career. If he was to make the final 3 times and lose, then maybe. Anything can happen in the 7-8 years he has left. It’s best asking questions like this when a player is in their late 20′s. It’s true that this was the best shot Nadal has ever had at winning it however.

For me, I think it’s likely he will win it at some point in his career. He can play on the hard stuff as he has shown, so if anything’s going to stop him, it would be mental, but I doubt he’s going to let that affect him either. Murray just played too good that day (or two days).

Olympic years are also difficult because the schedule gets compacted. Murray wasn’t really there in Beijing, even though he played it. Federer was there, but he only played 3 matches at Toronto and Cincy combined.

Nadal should still be pleased with his US Open finish. He gains another 300 pts from last year, extending his distance from Federer and Djokovic (who actually lost 250 pts).

He’s now made the semi-finals at all four GS. I don’t believe that a semi-finalist can ever have his title chances written off (that includes Federer in Paris, though that is a different beast).


S Green Says:

NachoF,

I have promised not to speak a single negative word against a player or a poster here. I’ll stick with that.

You are a pretty newbie here, in comparison to me. I have been posting on this site for 2 years now. A true Fed fan like Grendel, who has probably been longer than anyone else I know, knows better than you do about my history and position.

Five days ago, if I said a negative thing about Fed or anyone else, it was not directed against a player. It was a reaction to you. You provoked me. I fell for your bait. That was my mistake. My response to you at the time was intended to show how it feels to hear criticism of your favorite player.

And I had a bet with Von that if Fed wins, I would be a reborn Fed supporter. And I explained the meaning of that bet that I’d never say a bad word about any player. I will keep my promise and never fall for any bait. Not any more.


tennisfan Says:

OMG … you picked Murray … Sean!

Federer played great and I also noticed that Murray has a weakness .. hit a shot ball and move him up and back on the court. Nadal sat and kept hitting his same looping top spin which Murray returned and then dissected Nadal. Federer would mix hard ball from the back… with shots way out wide and then shots very short. Murray couldn’t adjust consistently to the changes and he did to Murray what Murray did to Nadal. Fed really is the best there has ever been and I’ve seen them all.


The Tornado Says:

You were wrong. Wrong.


st4r5 Says:

Yes, wrong. There is only one truth, Federer won!


NachoF Says:

S Green,
You might be a veteran here… but you certainly gained a very bad reputation after your outbreak at everyone that got even close to criticizing Djokovic….. and again, Im pretty sure Federer would not want someone who called him a loser less than 5 days ago come out and say he is now a fan ‘again’…


JCF Says:

I thought it was a high quality match. Even though Murray didn’t come close to winning it, I still think he played very good tennis. It wasn’t nerves or inexperience that lost him the match. Fed just had all the answers at the right times.


JCF Says:

“And I had a bet with Von that if Fed wins, I would be a reborn Fed supporter. And I explained the meaning of that bet that I’d never say a bad word about any player. I will keep my promise and never fall for any bait. Not any more.”

Reborn. That’s an interesting word. I don’t think you can just choose to do this any more than I can choose to believe that cauliflower is my favorite food (yuck!). Nacho is questioning your sincerity, and perhaps with good reason.

I don’t question you being a Fed fan again. He’s had that effect on me too. ‘Reborn’ is the only word I question.

I expected and wished for this win from Fed, so I think I get to avoid scrutiny this time. I think Murray has a very good chance at winning the AO though. 12 months ago Djokovic lost to Fed in his first GS final at the USO and went on to prove he’s up there with the elite by winning the AO. Murray is as good as Djoko was so it’s very possible he does the same.


Von Says:

“S”:

I think it would be best just sticking to being a Djokovic fan. As I previously stated, there isn’t any dishonor going back on your word that emanated from light banter. You need to remain a Djoko fan and my reason is very simple. It’s not posible to go back, but to move forward. Can you honestly state that you won’t be offended and/or restrain yourself 100 percent each time something is said derogatorily toward Djokovic? I don’t think so. It’s almost if I were to say I’m going to be a Fed fan and then see another Fed fan bashing the daylights out of Roddick, I most definitely would become offended and forget my promise, which I again reaffirm, was mentioned during a moment of light banter. I almost wish I had not gotten involved in that conversation because you wouldn’t have had to make such a statement/decision. Remain a Djoko fan — it’s the best alternative.


S Green Says:

Von,
Honestly, no tennis player has EVER offended me (for sure, a poor performance has disappointed me sometimes). If players offend me, then what’s the point of watching tennis? To be offended again?

Yes, Zealots have tried to offend me. I learned a lesson, i.e. completely avoid offensive remarks and not fall for any bait. That’s what I’ll do.
I will refrain from responding to them. I should not have responded to the guy above. I am still in my initial phase of my training and hope to achieve my goal eventually, i.e. stay positive all the time.

I never said I’d abandon Djoko. I will not. I will not be abandoning any other player I’ve liked, either. I will be only adding more to the list as they emerge to raise the level of tennis.


NachoF Says:

S Green,
What you shouldnt have done is call Federer a loser… I will never forget it…a “veteran” like you has no excuse for that.


zola Says:

***Murray My Pick to Beat Federer Today in US Open Final ***

Sean,
your jinxing abilities amazes me.:) Didn’t you also pick Rafa to win the US Open. ( and I begged you not to!)…..


Sanjeev Says:

Someone was wrong :P
Murray played really well this Open, but Federer just found his fire and kept on fueling it during the last 2 matches of the tournament. He only had 1 match that showed signs of weakness.

Check out my site for tennis and sports updates/opinions at :

http://www.talkaboutsport.blogspot.com


mel Says:

sean,

good call again…must really be frustrating for you that federer proves you wrong many times over…


sheila Says:

i am simply overjoyed that roger won uso. i think murray did play a decent match, but i think roger found his old form. i think roger went in w/lots of pressure because so many people have been writing him off. it was great to see him get thru and it was great 2c serena get thru. although a federer fan i picked djokovic 2win this one and was again overjoyed that fed took him out. brad gilbert is notorious 4 saying roger is over the hill and all these young guns are taking him out. i’m glad he was wrong and i’m glad i was wrong. i think djokovic will go on to win more slams but i will b amazed if he gets 13 of them. i also think nadal will win many more majors but the way he abuses his body on hardcourts i just don’t c the longevity. clay and grass are much more forgiving on rafas body then a fast hardcourt. first of all fast hardcourts take away nadals timing, which murray did beautifully. i just hope roger can win a few more slams to break sampras’s record. obviously his days of dominance are over. but, i also think w/the gulbis’s, cilic’s, del potro’s coming up the ranks they will give nadal, djokovic and murray a run for their money. cilic especially was very impressive w/djokovic. 2009 should be a very interesting season. let’s c how they all fare then.


Von Says:

Many fans say their fave is a loser, he sucks, he’s a disappointment, but it’s said out of frustration and disappointment. If the ssme statement is made by a non-fan, then there’s a problem — it’s bashing. From the posts I’ve read, whenever the remarks are made by a player’s fan, it’s all just venting. Everyone is allowed to blow off steam sometimes and it should be overlooked.


sar Says:

i think djokovic will go on to win more slams but i will b amazed if he gets 13 of them.

Sheila, I do too. I think Djok would be quite satisfied with one of each GS and Masters. I think he is aiming for the same thing Sharapova is. One of each.


Women play tennis too, you know Says:

Von wrote:

Many fans say their fave is a loser, he sucks, he’s a disappointment, but it’s said out of frustration and disappointment. If the ssme statement is made by a non-fan, then there’s a problem — it’s bashing. From the posts I’ve read, whenever the remarks are made by a player’s fan, it’s all just venting. Everyone is allowed to blow off steam sometimes and it should be overlooked.

*******

I would skip the mothering here and just talk tennis.


Von Says:

“I would skip the mothering here and just talk tennis.”

Yeah, Latent. Now you’ve gone over to using the women’s tennis post name? You need to start writing in Chinese for me not to detect you. I know why you’re doing this, but I don’t want to start anything with you — you’ve losing your touch, man. Shame on you. Anyway, don’t let me stop you.


oops Says:

No one will ever be greater than the Fed. Congrats Fed!


Roy Says:

The final men’s singles match was terribly exciting as well as hugely disappointing. Exciting, because the maginificient Federer returned to his trade-mark sublime form during this match. Disppointing, because a Grand-slam final, of all matches, should be such an one-sided affair, especially considering that fast HC was the favourite surface for both the players in the match.


Richard Waddington Says:

Federer proved the so called experts wrong and will do so again

Richard Waddington


Richard Waddington Says:

Federer at his best eclipses everyone. Sean. Why dont you learn about tennis before making these embarrassing predictions?


gulu Says:

Sean, you r really stupid for writing federer off so early! And hey! Never ever write anything which dishonours champions like Fed(or anyone else).I m talking about you using the word ‘alleged’ while referring to Federer’s mononucleosis.How dare you! Shame on people like sean.


Fruitcake Says:

I just saw this “prediction” .. couldn’t believe anyone who knows anything about tennis could make such a prediction. Absolutely no way was Federer going to lose to Murray – no matter what tennis Murray was playing. I thought the Scot could have taken one set, but one set only – and he didn’t even get that. Murray is not in Federer’s class … and he would be the first to agree!

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