Federer-Soderling: The Power of a Single Point
| June 2nd, 2010, 5:51 am
  • 246 Comments

by Matthew Laird

It isn’t often that you get the chance to say this, but Robin Soderling’s defeat of Roger Federer in the French Open quarterfinals swung completely on a single point. With the match tied at one set apiece, Soderling was serving to stay in the set, down 4-5. He gets down a break point – which is also a set point – and after a big serve followed by a powerful forehand, both of which forced weak replies from Federer, the defending champion barely manages an attempt at a lob that just gets past the net.

Soderling runs up to meet it and smacks the ball for what looks like an easy put away: a half-smash out of the court that should be landing in the fourth or fifth row. The ball soars into the air, and it almost certainly looks like a winner. Against any other player, it probably would have been. But Federer sees that Soderling is going behind him with his shot at the net, so he pivots and backs up. He gets probably eight feet wide of the doubles alley and even further back behind the baseline before he jumps, balletic, into the air. He swings his racket sideways like he was hitting a kickserve and catches the ball at the height of his swing, sending it knifing back into court. It must have been about twelve feet off the ground when he made contact with it.

Soderling could have been forgiven if he had turned his back to the net and stalked back to the baseline, assuming that he’d won the point. He nearly did. If you watch the replay (found on youtube here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EyYHxAFwaIA at the 1:45 mark) you can see that he relaxed for a moment. But when he saw Federer moving sideways and back and noticed that his smash wasn’t quite as good as he thought it was, he got back on the balls of his feet and made sure he was ready for whatever Federer could come up with. His heart must jumped into his throat when he saw the shot that his opponent managed to pull off. This is not a shot that you can practice returning, because this is not a shot that you ever see: a slice smash from a dozen feet in the air, eight feet wide of the doubles alley and just as far behind the baseline. On most courts, that shot isn’t even possible because the court would have prohibited Federer’s chance to run it down. But Phillippe Chartrier is one of the most spacious courts in the world when it comes to room around the field of play, and that’s what allowed Federer a look at Soderling’s smash.

It looked like the ball was going to sail over Soderling’s left shoulder, almost down the sideline, hook into the middle of the court, and drop into just inside the baseline. Since the shot had such unusual spin, it was tough for Soderling to know how it was moving, and he didn’t have any time to figure it out. Most professional tennis players can predict how a ball is going to react after a bounce or how its spin will affect the path it’s taking through the air, because they’ve seen the vast majority of the possible ways that a tennis ball can be hit, in the course of the tens of thousands of balls they hit in their careers. But I think it’s fair to bet that Soderling hadn’t seen a shot like this often enough to know for sure how he should handle it. (It’s not that unusual a shot for Federer, though. You can see him making almost the same shot against Evgeny Korolev at the 2009 Australian Open here:

In a very impressive display of improvisation, the Swede responded by jumping up himself and going for a one-handed backhand overhead, one of the hardest and most awkward shots in the game for a player with a two-handed backhand to pull off. He flicked his racket up over his head and caught the ball at the perfect point, sending it squarely back into the open court for a winner. Since Federer was by now practically in the luxury boxes in the first row, he couldn’t make a play on it. The fact that Federer’s shot was so beautiful and smoothly-executed made it easy for people to forget just how difficult Soderling’s reply was, even though it looked clunky by comparison. He took the best kind of shot that Federer could come up with and handled it. Maybe not with ease, but certainly without any fanfare. You’d never guess from his reaction that he just saved set point by quashing what would have been one of the best shots of the year.

Can you imagine if Gael Monfils had made that shot?

As if the fact that it was one of the greatest exchanges of the tournament thus far wasn’t enough, it was on an absolutely essential point at a pivotal stage of the match. If Federer had gotten that shot past Soderling, or if he had missed that backhand overhead, not only would he have been up two sets to one, but he would demonstrated, as he almost always does, why people are so awed by what he can do. Because he will hit shots that you can’t even see coming, much less deal with. He would have broken Soderling’s spirit on that point, as well as his serve. That intimidation factor has been an important component of Federer’s dominance during the last half-decade. Tennis is such an intensely mental game that even the slightest edge can tip a match in your favor, and if you can get your opponent thinking that they can play as well as Soderling was in that set and still lose it on a circus shot like the one he very nearly pulled off, it becomes very difficult for them to harbor much belief that they’re going to walk away the victor. Federer may not hit shots like that on match point very often, but he’s won plenty of matches by hitting those sorts of ridiculous shots.

While it is impossible to speculate on what would have happened if that point had swung the other way, I think there’s a good chance that the we’d all be talking about a different kind of history being made. The Swede’s shot was, in fact, somewhat reminiscent of that infamous high backhand overhead that Andy Roddick sent sailing wide in the Wimbledon final last year. Roddick missed, lost the set, and eventually lost the match. The timing was really perfect for Soderling today. After saving set point, he went on to hold serve before the match was suspended for an hour-long rain delay. If he had just been broken before the rains came, he would have had a whole hour to sit in his locker room and think about what an amazing shot that was and how he was going to come back from two sets to one. Since he made that shot, Federer was the one stewing about what happened, and when play resumed, he dropped serve and lost the set 7-5. The momentum had clearly swung, and after getting back an early break in the fourth set, Soderling never let up.

Like I said, it doesn’t happen often where you can say with any confidence at all that a single point probably swung the match one way or another. It’s even rarer to be able to say that about a point that didn’t involve a choke from one of the players involved – think back to Berdych’s duffed volley on break point while up two sets to love against Federer in the 2009 Australian Open. But this was the two-shot exchange of the tournament as far as I’m concerned, played to perfection by both competitors involved. It’s very rare, almost unheard of, for Federer to come up with that kind of magic at an essential stage of a match and not come away with the point. That must have been just as discouraging for him as it usually is for his opponents when he makes that type of shot.

Soderling managed to pull off a pair of absolutely stunning feats: that absurdly difficult shot to save set point and then following it up with the even more difficult victory. For his first time in 13 meetings, he’s beaten Roger Federer. The question now is whether or not he can build on this victory, or if he’ll be sufficiently satisfied – or emotionally drained – from his win today to let his level of play drop. Last year, he was happy just to make it to the finals. This year, maybe he’ll want to go a step further.


Also Check Out:
No Joke, Robin Soderling Overpowers Roger Federer at French Open, Snapping Semifinal Streak
Serena Williams Declares She Has No Boyfriend, She’s Single!
Roger Federer Shed A Single Tear After Losing Today In The Wimbledon Final
Is Robin Soderling’s 2012 Tennis Season Over?
Andy Murray Explains Why Tennis Has Become An Older Sport

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246 Comments for Federer-Soderling: The Power of a Single Point

Sam Says:

Had Federer connected on that overhead would it have been the greatest shot ever?


Kimo Says:

Roger’s shot was sublime. However I was very surprised by the way the ball reacted off of Robin’s racket. His racket face was open, yet the ball reacted as if it was closed. I dunno how that happened. Before he hit it I assumed the ball would go up in the air, yet it was hit to the ground. Wierd.


madmax Says:

Sam,

Same shot in 2006 against Roddick. Take a look.

Awesome, but this time, the point went in!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Hp-EArV6s8

Kimo,

loved your posts yesterday.


Kimo Says:

thanks max :)


InMyOpinion Says:

Fed’s land is cloud cuckoo land, dream on Federer fans, that point was irrelevnt, Federer was on a loser from the word go. Why can’t you guys accept that Federer can lose sometimes.

You are all such bad losers just like your idol. The next think you’ll be wanting is a re-match, so that Federer can take a toilet break to even things out a bit, and put Soderling off.


madmax Says:

D’uuhhhh?

We can accept the loss. You have to when things like this happen. It’s hard of course, but after reading the Federer interview yesterday, I was heartened by it. And the point was great, there is no harm in reminiscing as Sam pointed out earlier.It was a great shot by fed, and an even great “surprise” return from Soda.

If you read Sam’s post carefully InMyOpinion, you would see that they put a question mark, which means it was a question, NOT a statement.

Try not to be like this, it’s hard enough right now, but all federer fans are dealing with it. Clearly, you have a bit of an axe to grind?

Why?


Tanya_Harding Says:

Matches are not won or lost on one shot. There are ebb and flows in every match.

Federer had many chances but never capitalized on them. Never raised the level of his game to match the intensity of Robin’s.

Bad for Federer but good for Soderling.

I still hate Robin Soderling’s guts, but I do give him credit.


Polo Says:

InMyOpinion, I think you had it in mind to write that message immediately after Federer lost. You should have read all the posts here first because your blog had no basis on reality. Clearly, if somebody was dreaming, it was you and not us because a majority of the Fed-fan posts here expressed acceptance of the loss.


InMyOpinion Says:

My comment is about the fact that one point was responsible for the loss.


Mr. Perfect Says:

opinions are like @$$ole$. everybody has one.

great article. this was a very tight match and that one point could have probably have given us a different result. maybe not. we can only speculate. soderling earned his 1st win against federer, but when you win for the 1st time in 13 matches, you don’t win by just flipping a switch. that match was quite close and that is a fact. it is not a straight set beat down like delpotro beating nadal at usopen semis or andy murray doing so in australian open quarters.

and mad max – that shot roger hit against roddick was not in 2006. look at roger. look at the davidoff signs and the red court. it must have been the basel encounter between roger and roddick in 2002. the video was posted in 2006. the shot was hit long back. :)


Chris Tennis Says:

really thought the rain delay had more of an impact.


Mr. Perfect Says:

further proof that this smash from the stands is no fluke. Roger hits it on a regular basis. this guy has all the shots in the tennis manual and then some. Has to be the most talented player ever to pick up a racket.

look at this shot :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ta63Bd86VyU

Roger federer = closest thing to perfection on a tennis court.


Polo Says:

Here is another girl trembling at the site of Serena across the net. Women’s tennis is really ugly to watch.


Polo Says:

Stosur should have ended the match on her serve so that they can bring on the men already.


TGiT Says:

Agree that the rain delay had more impact.

There is no other tennis surface where you can start a match in one set of court conditions and then by the end of the match the court surface is different.

As the rain continued it got harder for Fed to hit through the ball and take control. He simply does not have the upper body strength of Sod or DelPo. Those two have cannon forearms and Sod was killing a wet tennis ball with ease.

Even at Wimbledon the court changes over two weeks but not during a match.


Huh Says:

InMyOpinion:

You are one of those anti-Feds who’re always waiting to take cheap shots at Fed while conveniently forgetting that it was your idol Nadal who said in his interview after losing to Soderling last year that Sod played that well because he(i.e.Rafa) let him play well. Now that’s sour loser. And when Sod was asked this very thing, he gave the fitting reply that he’s not buying into Rafa’s words. Sod clearly and in most unequivocal terms stated that he doesn’t believe about Rafa allowing him to run away with that win, he won because he played well, simple. So bad, Sod had to state the truth then.

Oh, if you’re envious about Roger being graceful in victory as in defeat, then please try to give up your envy.


Dan Martin Says:

Great article – tennis does sometimes turn on a point here or there. Had Soderling won one of his set points in the 4th set last year in New York maybe the semis streak gets broken earlier. Either way a great match with a lot of massive shots from Soderling.


Tanya_Harding Says:

Huh;

You sir are an angry, overly opinionated poster. The kind on message boards, I find distasteful.

Everyone has the right to his or her own opinion without being rudely talked to.

Funny how the Internet brings out the worst in some people.


madmax Says:

Mr. Perfect!

Are you sure it wasn’t 2006? I have them all logged here – but if you come back to me and say it was 2002, then I will believe you.

Even so,

It was still a great shot!

Hello Huh, xxx


sar Says:

Any streams of Novak?


Ben Pronin Says:

Madmax, Mr Perfect is right, that shot was 2002. Roddick and Fed only played in Basel twice and if you look at the score in the video, you can see it matches the one from 02. Nonetheless, sick shot. He hit a similar one against Djokovic at the 08 USO (I think). I’ll look for it later, but it was almost better than the Roddick one because it was a lob/smash/sick-get.

I agree and disagree with this article. I wouldn’t say the match necessarily turned on this point, but this point is a good microcosm of the whole match. Soderling was super aggressive, Federer still did as much as he could, but Soderling raised his level to incredible heights to get the win. Honestly, possibly the toughest loss Fed’s had all year but the best one, too. Imo, Fed never let it slip so much as Soderling really just kept taking it from him. Fed got outplayed while playing fairly well and, to me, that’s better than losing because of ugly shanks and poor movement.


OllyK Says:

Nole, breaks!! Pleaase, serve well for the 1st set!


Duro Says:

Guantanameraaa…


OllyK Says:

hey, Durooo! :) We are one set closer..just 2 more. :)


Twocents Says:

It was a long-over-dued loss.

Soda did not deserve that 0:12 H2H.

Roger was lucky that he got to payback Davy twice before AO10, thus he got away with karma at AO10 QF.

Thanks for fighting the inevitable, Fed.


Huh Says:

Tanya-Harding:

Now should I cry over your opinion on me? ;)
Can’t your highness see how InMyOpinion was insulting Fed baselessly calling him sore-loser?
He probably forgot, what goes around, comes around. Whenever I deem fit, I would defend Fed from attacks and abuses hurled towards him. And you probably being a Nadal fan should keep your advice for your Nadal fan groups. If you don’t want us Fed-fans toretaliate, stop attacking us first. People like InMyOpinion are the offenders, people like you perhaps their suporters, people like me are just the defenders. If they start the quarrel, why you blame us? Strictly double-standards!

THUS
Let he, who is without blemish, cast the first stone.


Huh Says:

And by the way, taking toilet breaks to disrupt the opponent’s rythm is Rafa’s trick for winning the matches at any cost. And yet his fans accuse Fed of doing that, sheesh!


Huh Says:

Hi Dear Maxi:

Don’t worry, our Fed will definitely bounce back much stronger, much as it may be to the dismay of his haters!

ALLEZ ROGER!


Polo Says:

Even if Federer does not bounce back, all the other players have to bounce really high to reach Fed’s level.


Duro Says:

Guantanameeeraaaa…


Ben Pronin Says:

Is no one watching Nadal? JMac is saying Rafa’s a little out of it because he was there hours ahead of time. Almagro is playing pretty well, being patient but aggressive. Ironically, Almagro has already won the total number of games that he got off Nadal just 2 years ago in the same round.


stu Says:

waitasec! didn’t realize the rafa match had started – and he’s been broken?!!!!


skeezerweezer Says:

Ben,

Rafa is just warming up. If this continues on to the second, then we have a match. But Rafa already broke back to hold serve…


Daniel Says:

Nadal is playing short and a lot of backhand errors.


sar Says:

NOLE PLEASE WIN THIS


Ben Pronin Says:

Wtf is going on with Djokovic??


margot Says:

Djko doing well, jane maybe you could stop cleaning and take a peak….?


madmax Says:

Thanks for putting me right Ben. The youtube must have been posted in 2006, so Mr. Perfect was right. I bow to your greater knowledge – again (am happy to do so!).

Yes, I also agree that Federer played well yesterday. I just wish he had taken his chances in the third set, at 5:4. One point away from taking the third set. It’s so reminiscent of the times he has had a match in the bag and blown it -Delpo USO, match point, it goes on.

I think Fed’s biggest problem this year (if I can call it that), is his inability to take advantage of the breaks he has had up in the set. He seems to have a mental lapse at that time.

This isn’t like Fed, and calls for action Ben! Too many times, this has happened. And yet, if you read the other post titled “Chapter 15 Pre-Grand Slam”, you’ll see how mentally strong he became (eventually). These mental lapses are almost understandable during the early part of his career, and I would still describe Fed as playing his best tennis ever at the AO at the age of 28. Phenomenal.

I just don’t know what has happened in that short time, other than lung infection, out for 6 weeks, but then he still played some crackers in tournaments in IW and Rome with match points against both baggy and berdy.

It’s important for Federer to learn from this upset, he was so confident going into the tournament at Roland Garros, but now must switch quickly for the next game plan at wimbledon.


skeezerweezer Says:

But they are still on serve, Rafa hasn’t lost the set. Still picking Rafa in straights….we’ll see ;)


sar Says:

Sh!t. Nole break back


sar Says:

Smart play Nole, keep it up


Huh Says:

Rafa’s my pick to win his match in straight sets.He’d also most probably win the FO 10. I don’t see anyone stopping him at all.


Huh Says:

And BTW, I watched Fed’s match where Sod was just insane good, looked almost untouchable!


stu Says:

ugh im so sick of this.

watching rafa and nico = wayyy more interesting.


ines Says:

This loss put into context how incredible all Fed had done on the last 6 years, and that´s a good feeling.Congratulations Roger you are the best even when you lost, no excuse for a Champion.


Polo Says:

Rafa will win his fifth French Open. Everybody can play crazy good but Nadal will still prevail.


Ben Pronin Says:

Soderling could? Maybe?

Djokovic is ridiculous. I’m shocked.

I don’t know, madmax. Soderling didn’t really give Federer a lot of chances to dictate play. In the other matches, yeah he’s blowing opportunities. How can he keep focus all the time? He’s accomplished just too much to always be able to care. Besides, clay is still his worst surface. Onto greener pastures :)


Daniel Says:

If Almagro could return the serve on the T he would have a shot.


stu Says:

Rafa’s a big bully. Rafa’s a bloody genius.


Daniel Says:

Nadal is amazing on clay, he played his worst set the entire tourney and even so didn’t lose it.

Almagro had severel 30-30, 15-30 games after he made 4-3, but didn’t push it. Now Nadal grew in the tiebreak and will probably play better the next sets to close a straight win.


Daniel Says:

What happened with Djoko? Last time I check he was 2-1 Adv-40, and he lost 6-2?!?!


madmax Says:

nice pun Ben, you sure you’re not british?


sar Says:

NOvak better get busy


stu Says:

Does anyone think Jurgen might actually pull off the upset, aided by (say) 4 more DFs?


Huh Says:

Maxi:

I think Fed’s certainly gonna put up a better show this year at WIM. He may not allow anyone to beat him at WIM before, however, we’ve to wait and see. But he’ll certainly do better, I feel, at WIM & USO.


Huh Says:

Maxi:

I think Fed’s certainly gonna put up a better show this year at WIM. He may not allow anyone to beat him at Wim BEFORE semi, however, we’ve to wait and see. But he’ll certainly do better, I feel, at WIM & USO.


sar Says:

any live stream links?


Huh Says:

Is Nole already broken in the 4th set? If no, then why so much horror?! Is Nole really playing that bad, for his fans to be so irritated?

Sar: Please tell, if possible, I’m waiting.


Daniel Says:

Strangelly this year we haven’t seen a 6-1 or 6-0 set from Nadal. Every match he surrender more and more games. First 6, then 7, 10, 11, today 8 alredy, if the pattern holds, eventually somebody will take a set.


sar Says:

I don’t know HUH, I asked Novak to get busy and asked for a live stream link. Why are you asking me?


stu Says:

Huh,

he was playing solid – not good, but adequately – for the first 2 sets. then his service % dropped all of a sudden and he hasnt shown any signs of dominance in set 4.

fans are frustrated because we are tired of him springing nasty surprises on us.


andrea Says:

wow. good for stosur.

and in case ya’ll were wondering what had happened to Mr. Borg and all his outlandish predictions: (they seem to always come around the FO and Wimbledon for some reason)

Borg: Soderling “will become the world’s No. 1″

STOCKHOLM (AP)—Bjorn Borg is predicting that Swedish compatriot Robin Soderling will soon reach the No. 1 ranking after beating Roger Federer in the French Open quarterfinals.

Borg described Soderling’s play against Federer on Tuesday as “perfect” and said the seventh-ranked Swede could surpass both the Swiss star and Rafael Nadal in the rankings.

Borg told Swedish newspaper Expressen on Wednesday that Soderling “will become the world’s No. 1, and will do it faster than we can expect.”

Borg holds a record six French Open titles from 1974-81. The last Swede to win the title at Roland Garros was Mats Wilander in 1988.


Daniel Says:

Something is weird with Nadal, he is not on a good day. He lacks intensity, unusual as it may sound.


Ben Pronin Says:

Huh, Djokovic was up 2-1 in the third set and then lost 6 straight games. 6. Six. Unacceptable.


OllyK Says:

Ben, he remembered that he forgot to lose 2nd set so he lost 3rd instead. ;)
He needs to wake up asap. Melzer is playing much better than him in 4th.


Huh Says:

Sar:

Thanks for ur response. I asked you coz I also am not being allowed to watch tennis by dad & mom even though the matches are being telecast. Just wanted to know the score, you were here, so asked you. Oops, just saw you also asking for the link, shoulda seen it before, we’re on the same boat then.

Go Novak!!!


tfouto Says:

the problem with djoko now is that it seems tired. You can see it on the big rallies.


Huh Says:

Ben:

Honestly speaking, I am also rooting for Novak. Thanks for telling the score BTW.

stu:

Thank u for telling about how Novak’s played overall upto now. Hopefully, he’ll fix up his head and soon finish off Melzer.

Go Novak!


Ben Pronin Says:

Melzer has had 18 break points. 18!! Converted only 3 so far. Djokovic is 4/5.


Huh Says:

Borg’s predictions generally come true. Pretty darn excited reading the views of that respected legend. The fruition of his expectation seems a long way thou. It would be very very surprising if that happens, but anything is possible, and Sod is really exciting to watch! I’m crazy.


stu Says:

In the same vein, Ben, Djoker has hit 7 DFs. Seven!!


Huh Says:

If Nole looks tired, he better lose or if he faces Rafa at semi, he’d be butchered! God save Novak! But still rooting for Nole.


Ben Pronin Says:

When do Borg’s predictions come true? In 2008, he thought Federer had a great chance to beat Nadal at the FO because he was being more patient or something. That prediction couldn’t have been more wrong. And then he put Nadal AND Djokovic ahead of Federer to win Wimbledon. He was barely right with Nadal but Djokovic lost in round 2.


Ben Pronin Says:

This 3-4 game with Djokovic has lasted roughly 3 hours. What’s going on? Why don’t they at least mention it on TV? What is Novak’s deal?


Huh Says:

Ben:

Borg stated Nadal’d win WIM 08 and he did (he thou later changed opinion and said Fed’ll win, but I seriously thought he was truly speaking his gut-feelng in his first prediction). So regarding Nadal beating Fed at WIM 08, he was roght. He said simlarly that Fed’ll win WIM 09, before the start of WIM 09 itself, and Fed unded won again. So Borg has been right.


Huh Says:

sory for typo errors BTW.


sar Says:

Thank OK HUH. I am still trying to find a link that works for me.


Huh Says:

roght=right

unded=indeed in my 12.50 post.


Daniel Says:

I think Almagro has the worst movement of the enitre ATP circuit, even lower than Karlovic. Everytime Nadal open court on deuce side even a little bit and he wns the point.


sar Says:

Novak needs to find a serve.


Ben Pronin Says:

Watching Djokovic is unbearable.


Ben Pronin Says:

I think he’s cramping. For the love of tennis. This is ridiculous.


tfouto Says:

if there’s a 5 set than i dont think Novak can handle phisically… he’s in trouble.


Huh Says:

FOR GOD’S SAKE, HOLD NOLE, HOOOOOOOOOOOOOOLD!!!!!!!!!!


Huh Says:

DAMN TENSE!


tfouto Says:

tie-break… Nole chance…


Ben Pronin Says:

Melzer has hit the line on his backhand like 30 straight times. Djokovic is so mentally weak it’s unbelievable. Shut out in the tie-breaker? Really?


stu Says:

so ugly, so so ugly :(


Daniel Says:

Djoko, fight!!!


stu Says:

how many times this year? what the hell is going on with him? i think he owes it to tennis fans to spill the beans!


sar Says:

this sucks


Ben Pronin Says:

Ridiculous. I guess the big question here is whether Djokovic will retire or will Melzer just run away with the 5th?


Ben Pronin Says:

Stu, the explanation is simple, Djokovic is mentally weak.


stu Says:

but HOW weak can you be at #2 in the world with all the big wins you’ve had? how can you not believe you can beat the Kohlschreibers and Melzers of the world, and even the Rochuses? there’s no logical explanation.


tfouto Says:

today, i think that more than mentally weak, is physically weak.


Ben Pronin Says:

Djokovic is an illogical guy. When he was coming up he thought he could beat everyone. Now that he’s up he doesn’t think he can beat anyone.


Ben Pronin Says:

Saves two break points to open the 5th… Sigh. At least he’s ahead for now.


Polo Says:

Didn’t Djokovic use to have a very good 5-set record?


Ben Pronin Says:

Djokovic still has a really good 5-set record. I think, in just the slams, it’s like 7-4.


stu Says:

This Djokovic is nothing like the 07-08 Djokovic who brought his best stuff to the Slams


montecarlo Says:

Djokovic has saved 18 out of 21 break points. That doesn’t sound like mentally weak? He’s got physical issues not mental.


Polo Says:

Somewhere along the way, Djokovic’s screws loosened up.


jane Says:

Hey guys, Djoko is trying, but Melzer is playing great; it’s not all down to Novak. Yes, his serve is very inconsistent, but please give some credit to Jurgen for those scorchers he is hitting. He is finding some very nice short angles in the court and hitting with great depth too, not to mention his lefty serve, which is a definite weapon.

Honestly I didn’t know what to expect from Djok at the start of this event after the spring he’d had, and because his draw opened up nicely, he was able to make it this deep and better his results from last year. I am happy with that. Step by step he’ll get better.

Huh is right anyhow; if he does somehow beat Melzer in this fifth set, he’s probably going to go down fast and hard at the hands of Rafa Nadal!

And credit to Nico today; he has played much better than in the past versus Rafa – two tiebreaks is the best anyone has done so far versus Nadal this year.


andrea Says:

man, poor almagro….looks like a dogfight out there but all the tie breaks are going in nadal’s favor. at least he’s not going away in the third set yet.


Ben Pronin Says:

Djokovic is way too focused on his disbelief of all the winners coming off of Melzer’s racket.

Yeah, Djokovic will probably get crushed by Nadal, but that’s better than losing a 2 set to love lead against Melzer.


stu Says:

jane, nole’s draw opened up extremely well, he skipped the last 2 tournaments, he really should have melzer’s number. i fully expect him to lose to rafa if he manages to make it there tomorrow, but being beaten today is ridiculous.

nico deserves a set at the very least for his efforts.


Huh Says:

Wow! Almagro isn’t that bad after all, he’s putting up a very very spirited fight against Rafa! Although Rafa won two sets through TBs, at least he is being given tough resistance by Almagro. And the 3rd set is 4-3 in Alma’s favor. No regrets in losing if you at least fight. Hopefully guys like Muzza and Nole would learn this from the underdogs.


tfouto Says:

Nadal is serving for the semis…


Huh Says:

Seeing the heart of Almagro, I feel for him. Good for him that he didn’t let Nadal embarass for him. And I agree with stu that Alma deserves at least a set here, not that it matters to me. Sports is mostly cruel. :(


sar Says:

Nole please gather all your physical strength and get a huge burst of energy quick.


Huh Says:

I mean didn’t let Rafa embarass him, even Fed can learn something from Alma. If Almagro being a man can give Nadal so much resistance, why not others like Fed, who’re so much more talented than him? Shame on the top dogs and Kudos to Almagro.


stu Says:

Congratulations Mr. Invincible.


Huh Says:

Nole fans can take one positive if Nole loses here however, and it is: he would be saved from another butt-kicking by Rafa. ;)


Huh Says:

VAMOS RAFA INDEED! (COMING FROM A ARDENT FED-FAN)
RAFA IS UNIQUE, A BLESSING FOR TENNIS.


Huh Says:

Nole must take mental strength tips from Fed/Rafa.


Ben Pronin Says:

Melzer has a funny looking drop shot.


Ben Pronin Says:

Better yet, Nole should talk to Soderling.


Huh Says:

Yeah, Sod would be really helpful too, or may be Norman.


stu Says:

Nole should talk to a shrink.


jane Says:

huh, that’s true. LOL.

stu, I don’t see it that way. Melzer is the 22nd seed here, top 30 in the rankings; he got this far in the draw for a reason. He is 29, has lots of experience, has pushed other guys to 5 sets in grand slams and he has nothing to lose. In fact, the year Murray reached the USO final (2008), Melzer had him on the ropes in the R32. No opponent should be underestimated, especially at this stage in a slam.

No shame in going out here if Novak does. At least not to me.


blank Says:

Djokovic has 2 issues:
1. He is not a morning person. Implies that he will lose when playing before noon.
2. This is information that is not a available to the public yet. He has issues playing at Dusk. That’s why he lost 2 sets, and could possibly lose the third.

Slowly this disease is spreading to all other times of the day. Is there a cure for this?


Huh Says:

On a different note, seems like Jankovic is finally gonna win a slam. I don’t think anyone left can beat her. I’ve completely forgotten her. If Janko wins one, may be Ivanovic’d be again pumped up to do well in the women’s circuit.


Ben Pronin Says:

Djokovic and his looking up at the sky and asking “why me?” is really getting to me. I hope an anvil falls on him next time.


Ben Pronin Says:

Blank, hahahaha. I hear Djokovic likes to get to bed early, too. Wouldn’t want him playing too late.


Huh Says:

Nole needs to talk to me/Jane instead of Ben/stu. ;)


stu Says:

jane, i guess what’s worrying is that you rarely ever see Rafa or Fed go out like this, but you see Nole do it so often…of course there’s no shame and everyone is talented enough to win it all..but Nole needs to justify his ranking to the world, which means that he needs an equal number of big wins. lately, i don’t think he has done anything impressive to make up for these dismal failures.

but………..the match is still on and i think he will pull this one out!


Huh Says:

Getting to bed early and getting up from it late = no progress in life.


stu Says:

ditto on the “why me” attitude, Ben. haha but no anvils, please..TM was bad enough!


Huh Says:

Mrs. Jane:

If I were a Nole fan, I’d be ashamed or at least concerned if he goes out here, fighting/no fighting. Nole is same age as Rafa and Rafa’d probably have 7 slams by the FO 10 end, 17/18 MS shields. What Nole has, despite having so much talent? That’s a shame, that’s what I’m saying.


stu Says:

im off to an hour-long meeting. maybe they’ll still be at it when i return?


Ben Pronin Says:

Djokovic. Shame, shame.


Huh Says:

For Nole, losin to Melzer is far worse than being straight setted by this super in-form Nadal at RG.


Polo Says:

Djokovic is still fighting hard. He and his fans have nothing to be ashamed of. Even the best of them sometimes lose. Remember what happened yesterday?


tfouto Says:

i wonder if it was Berdych-Mezler final… really strange final.


Huh Says:

Nole shouldn’t have made Safin his idol.


jane Says:

Polo, thanks for your kind words. At least he will go down fighting. And if he loses, he was simply outplayed.


jane Says:

stu, trying to hold Novak and Murray to Fed and Rafa’s standards is not a good idea, in my opinion. They are who they are, and they try to do well. They are top ten level players. That’s good enough for me.


Huh Says:

Fight/no fight, a person as talented as Nole should not lose to Melzer at this stage of his career. If he loses, there’s everything to be ashamed of. Nole’s not getting any younger. As much as I hate to say this, his doors for winning a second slam are closing very fast. Hope it’s not too late before he gets the 2nd one. If he won’t won a slam now, when do you guys think he’d win it? Nole should win this, too bad if he does not. I would feel very very sad. Come on Nole, please!!!


Ben Pronin Says:

No way I’m rationalizing this. If Djokovic loses, I’m done rooting for him.


Mr. Perfect Says:

Huh:

stop being an idiot. shame on federer? for what? for fighting his way to 3finals and a GS on his least favored surface? for being the only guy to beat nadal twice on clay?

what next? rafa should learn from blake on how to play on hardcourts?

Ben:

good job! that is how i deduced it was basel 2002. fed’s pony tail is a dead give-away that this match was pre-2004 toronto…. that is when fed got rid of that pony.

and i gave the link to that shot of fed’s over djoko at 2008 us open in my 2nd post on this blog.


Huh Says:

Mrs. Jane:

Nole is much more than a top ten player, too sad it can’t be proved by me. :(
Nole can certainly reach the level close to Fed and better than Rafa on HCs. That says it all. With the amount of talent Nole has, he must win a Wimby too, but it’s his negative on-court attitude and tantrums that are his worst enemy. :/


andrea Says:

wow. this melzer/novak match is turning into a classic. can melzer pull thru?


tfouto Says:

Nole needs Mourinho as a coach.


Ben Pronin Says:

Who’s that retarded umpire calling Novak’s shots out? What’s his name?


Huh Says:

“Mr. Perfect Says:
Huh:

stop being an idiot. shame on federer? for what? for fighting his way to 3finals and a GS on his least favored surface? for being the only guy to beat nadal twice on clay?

what next? rafa should learn from blake on how to play on hardcourts?”"

Are you a Fed fan? If yes, your scolding me on this matter is most welcome. :D
That was tough love for Fed from me, so never mind, cool down, haha. ;)


blank Says:

Which would do Djokovic more harm:

Losing to Melzer in a tough 5th set?

— OR —

Getting his a** whipped by Nadal in the SF (that’ll make him even more negative)


Huh Says:

Oh God please, let Nole win!


rose Says:

omg my angina is acting up ..cmon novak pull this one off…


Huh Says:

Losing to Rafa in straight sets is not gonna hurt Nole that much IMO. It’d rather be losing a close fought match against a rather lesser player like Melzer which’d more hurt.


Ben Pronin Says:

Novak Djokovic does not deserve to be in the top 10.


Huh Says:

Cut that umpire’s salary.


jane Says:

Congrats to Melzer; and now he will have the pleasure of his first slam semi, facing Rafa! Rafa will face back-to-back lefties.

Also good try Nole – fighting till the last point. Many other talented players have lost at this stage in a slam; there is no shame in it – in my opinion.


Eric Says:

what the hell just happened?


andrea Says:

wow. he did it. now will he have anything left for nadal?


OllyK Says:

I AM SPEECHLESS. THIS IS HORROR.


skeezerweezer Says:

“jane Says:

Hey guys, Djoko is trying, but Melzer is playing great; it’s not all down to Novak.”

I thought Nole played hard also, but today Melzer just played better. Was actually an entertaining match, especially the last set. Look forward now to Rafa playing one of his own kind: LEFTY

Sorry Nole fans :(

Rafa,

Thought so. Straight sets…….Congrats to Rafa fans here at Tennis x!


JCZ Says:

Nole is toast. You can say he went fighting or console yourself in any way you want, but this SUCKED for him. He should have won in straights, but that’s the way it is with this guy. Wait until the presser, he’ll mention that something was wrong with the air and his lungs weren’t 100% or something…

He needs to win something


tfouto Says:

ouch…

I think Nadal never had such a easy semi in any slam as mezler…


Huh Says:

I’m so sorry Ben. Nole lost it, sheesh!


madmax Says:

Ollyk, this is unbelievable. I simply cannot believe what is going on right now.

Novak needs to sort out his physical needs. He isn’t physically strong. Some great shots from him, but you “know” him better – what is going on?

His breathing and his body language – negative. He must stop looking up at the sky when things dont go his way.

I really thought that Novak was going to come through, in straights. I feel he was the only one who had a chance to take out nadal.


Ben Pronin Says:

Totally agree with JCZ. That was a miserable performance. Against a much lesser opponent. Second straight slam quarterfinal where he was ahead and just cramped in the brain. Pathetic.


sar Says:

Bernardes robbed Nole. They showed the shot spot and it was in. On the other hand the crowd was clearly for Novak but ….


OllyK Says:

No shame, jane, but he had the match in his hands in 3rd set and he lost, that is inexplicable. He is no3, right after RAFA, for God’s sake…


i am it Says:

Djokovic’s honesty/ generosity is absolutely ridiculous. He calls an out-called ball in and attempts another out ball. He was up 2 sets and a break up but lets his guard down and loses next 7 games in a row and with that 3 sets in a row. This is it for Djokovic (hopefully not for his career).
Congratulation to elderly Melzer. He played superb tennis.


Huh Says:

Even being a Fed-fan, it hurt me more to see Nole losing this way than seeing Fed lose to Sod yesterday. :(
Bad day for me. I at least was hoping a semi for Nole considering the standard of his opponent.


Ben Pronin Says:

Tfouto, 08 Wimbledon semi against Schuettler is arguably easier. But it doesn’t matter.

Djokovic has too many problems. Too many. Physically, mentally, technically. It’s absurd.


skeezerweezer Says:

Movin on……

What is happening to Murray and Nole? Amazing these two young guys were suppose to be fighting for the top spots held by Fed and Rafa by now? no? WTF? They have all the talent, ability, c’mon guys get it together!


JCZ Says:

@ madmax: Not giving Soderling a chance?

I think he has a real chance. Look at what almagro was able to do today with strong shots, but lack of movement. Soderling’s shots are even stronger and he stands in the middle of the court and takes command of the rallies. I think it would be a good matchup.


Polo Says:

That was an exciting match. Thanks to both Djokovic and Melzer. And congratulations to Melzer.


OllyK Says:

maxi, he needs to do sth. I don’t know what, but SOMETHING…


Eric Says:

madmax,

why is Djokovic, who is not fit, isn’t exactly known as a the greatest clay court player, and has lost to Nadal on clay like five or six times without ever coming close to beating him as far as I can remember, a better shot to defeat Nadal than Soderling, who destroyed Nadal last year, is sky high on confidence from smashing Federer, and is playing by far the greatest tennis of his entire life? come on.


blank Says:

Ok Novak, now go and hire Todd Martin back. Maybe he wasn’t the issue ;-)


dangerouspaul Says:

nadal is so beatable this year at the french. it’s incredible how mentally weak the spanish players are against him. unfortunatly djoko didn’t win ..he would have hat a pretty good shot winning against rafa. melzer is so happy to have reached his first semis…no chance against nadal..but there is still soederling-…….


jane Says:

OllyK – I’ve watched tennis for a long time, since the early 80s. This happens to top players sometimes; they are upset in big matches by an underdog. I wouldn’t go so far as to say Djoko doesn’t deserve to be in the top ten or that he’ll never win another slam. He just turned 23. I think he has time.

Of course, he still needs to improve in some departments, but no player is perfect. He did get one bad call near the end there, I think, but who knows if it would’ve made a difference had it gone his way.


Huh Says:

I don’t think Nole’s ever gonna win FO, after seeing this performance. His winning the second slam is also getting more and more doubtful. The guy’s much talent, but talent’s not necessarily all that’s needed. I have to saw losing a match after leading 2 sets to none against Melzer should be considered diabolical. If you’re being honest with yourself, you’ve to say it was indeed a miserable performance.

That said, I hope Nole doesn’t fare this miserably against a lower ranked opponent anytime soon in slams.


Huh Says:

saw should be read as ‘say’


Huh Says:

Nadal is not beatable at FO this year, he only appears to be so. I don’t think he’s summoned all his powers to tackle his Spanish opponents upto now. In RG, he just needn’t do that until the real challengers confront him. He can still raise his level much higher, if need be.


Huh Says:

Congrats to Skeeze and myself for correctly predicting a staight set win for Rafa, I got lucky this time, haha. ;)


OllyK Says:

@ jane
“This happens to top players sometimes; they are upset in big matches by an underdog”

I think the crucial word is SOMETIMES. Since the beginning of this year many (much) lower ranked players beat him or almost beat him. That is the problem. I’m not saying that he doesn’t deserve to be top player. On contrary. He earned that place long time ago. But, if he wants to stay there he needs to regroup and figure out what’s not working asap…
I, as a die hard fan, shall like him and support him no matter what.


Huh Says:

Well, in the ladies’ side, I’m rooting for Dementieva to go all the way.

COME ON DEMENTIEVA!!!


jane Says:

Melzer took out Sela, then Mahut, then Ferrer (in straights, with a bagel), then Gaba (who beat Roddick), and now Djoko. He must feel kind of happy, even if he will go down to Rafa, the king of clay. : )

Looking forward to Berdy and Soda semi especially. And then whichever one faces Rafa in the final.


margot Says:

jane and all other djko fans, I’m so sorry you must be so disappointed. Too many harsh things being said about Novak though, I’m with jane on this one. In the last set, which I thought was very exciting and competitive, Meltzer played better, end of. And, speaking as someone who doesn’t particuly like him, I thought the joy on his face at the end was quite moving.
Djko, Andy, Delboy, Cilic, they’re all really young guys with lots of tennis ahead of them and they’ve done SO well, I think we fans forget this sometimes. And jane is right we should stop measuring them against Roger and Rafa, they are both, in completely different ways, one offs!
Sorry, this was a bit of a rant but I feel strongly about this one!


Polo Says:

Djokovic is only 23. There are many players with lesser talent who have won majors much older than that. Safin won his second major at the age of 25. I am sure you will agree than he is more mentally loose than anyone in the game. No one can deny that Djokovic has talent, ambition and determination. He has hit a bad spot in his career. He is too young and too good not to get out of it. Remember Agassi? He plummeted too at one point in his career.


madmax Says:

JCZ,

I wasn’t talking about soderling because he hasn’t played his semi final yet!

Novak was playing his QF today and I thought he would come through – easy – and give rafa good run for his money in the SF.

He almost took nadal out in madrid last year, (was it madrid or rome?), match point, so close – i was comparing that nole with this nole. He fought for every point then.

Of course soderling has a chance, if he reaches the final – he has to get through berdy first though and i dont like to think ahead.
It’s always match by match with me.

Ollyk, i am speechless. only nole knows how he feels, may be something will be said in the presser. He is too nice at the net though. He needs to put the fear back into his opponent. don’t worry. we’ll be back together again at wimby soon enough –

I am glad he has his coach there vadja – there will be some stern words I am sure.

It’s the killer instinct that’s lacking ollyk, do you think?


jane Says:

OllyK – I hear you, my friend. He is struggling, and I am very sad about it and frustrated by it. :’ ( At the same time, I am not going to bash him or write him off. It was good that he went out fighting today to whom I thought was a very spirited challenger in Melzer. I’ll wait and see what happens through the rest of the season for Djoko. QFs isn’t a horribly bad slam result in my opinion. Yes, I want him to go deeper than that and to win another slam too. But for now, gotta take the good with the bad.


jane Says:

margot @ 2:46 – I can’t TELL you how much your post means to me. Thank you. I feel the same as you. Totally 100% the same.


OllyK Says:

maxi, I am eager to know what he’ll say in his presser. Yes, he needs that killer instict he had in 2007 and at the beginning of 2008. I think he lost it in trying to make his technique perfect. As a result, he is lacking in both.
And, see you on grass season, but I really don’t have high expectations there for “no service” Nole…


OllyK Says:

Jane, you are great! So so positive! Your posts make me think twice (and that second thought is much brighter than 1st one, believe me) about some things. Yes, season is long, who knows what will happen in next 6 months. With Nole, you never know..


Daniel Says:

Novak needs his family in the crowd supporting him like they used to, at least back them he was winning! It’s a long time since I don’t see them in the crowds.

Disapointing indeed. I thought him not playing Madrid would benefit from another week off. Strange day today, Nadal won in straight but was really unrecognizable, and Djoko after 2 sets up and a break…


OllyK Says:

Daniel, regarding his family…
A month ago Nole’s father was guest on Serbian National TV. He said he can’t take watching Nole’s matches anymore. He has health issues (with his heart, I think). He can’t even watch it live, on TV. His mother is watching and recording them and he is watching later.
In Nole’s interview for Tennis TV, I heard that they are in Paris with him, they are just not at the stands…And I don’t think we’ll see them in his box any time soon.


Mr. Perfect Says:

Huh:

tough love for fed? not the time. he needs our support. there is not another man on the planet who could have beaten soda pop yesterday! most players would have been thrashed in straigh sets. i hope the rafatards stop claiming it was rafa’s knees that did him in last year. soda boy vindicated as much by taking down the 2nd greatest clay-courter of this decade with ice-man like cool.

and i think murray and djokovic, between the 2 of them, show up all that could be worst in tennis. much like how federer and nadal, between the 2 of them show us the best that tennis can offer. dont even bother feeling sorry for these 2 morons. i wouldn’t be surprised if federer and nadal are top 2, 5yrs from now. as of now delpotro, is the only hope for someone to overthrow the fedal dynasty.

murray and djokovic will be footnotes like safin, hewitt, ferrero and roddick in the fedal era. maybe there’s some 18yr old who will hit it big in a few years…… murray and djokovic can only dream of what federer and nadal have achieved.

so what is djokovic’s excuse today? early start? i am just glad, he did not retire. that should be some achievement, going by his record!


blank Says:

OllyK,

At the rate Novak is playing, I’d say his dad is wisely skipping watching his matches live. Why screw up the health by doing certain things when you know those certain things will screw up your health.

He’d be wise to skip even the recorded matches.


Huh Says:

None is bashing Nole, I know myself how sad I am about Nole’s loss. I badly wanted him to wiun end of story. Strangde how when some are really bashing Fed, people support them, on the other hand when Ben or me are expressing our tough love for Nole, we’re getting ridiculed and are being accused of bashing Nole! Accusing me is one thing, but why not spare Ben and refer to him or me vaguely? Am I that cfriminal? Sheesh!

The manner in which the talks are going would make you feel that we are the most condemned Novak Djokovic haters. And in fact, there was no need to bring Murray/DP/Cilic to bring into discussion here. It is totally irrelevat here. This thread solely concerns about yesterday’s and today’s FO matches. Why drag Murray/DP into conversation? This site indeed puts a restriction on expressing one’s honest opinions or observations. One cannot even say that Nole coulda done lot better especially when there’s no way the other guy was playing lights out tennis either. All are supposed to sing the same tune here. :/

And saying that Nole/Murray are so young is also not entirely true especially when it’s stated that we can’t compare them to Rafa. But why exactly? Is it only coz Djokovic/Murray are young and Rafa’s supposedly not? Hello, Rafa’s also just 24, just! And Murray/Djoko are already 23, not much younger than Rafa, I think. And there’s absolutely no wrong in comparing Nole to his peer group consisting of the young Nadal who’s done so many magnificent things despite being the same age as Nole/Muzza. The mention of the name Rafa itself leads to bring the names like Mjuzza/Nole coz they’re in the same thing and day in and day out, they duke it out with each other. There’s the Rivalry thng too between Rafa, Nole and Muzza, which is much flouted. If Nole wouldn’t be compared to Rafa, we’d compare him to whom, Ivanovic, Sharapova, Phelps, Fernando Alonso or Lionel Messi, eh? Nothing wrong in comparing, it’d be done even if tyou don’t like. They’re tennis professionals and it’s hardly petty to compare one professional to another professional in tennis, especially when their fans are always involved in comparing them! Or is it just that you’d cite the comparison of Nole with Rafa at your convenience or to suit your own fancy? Are we even allowed to do that or is that even becoming absurd for some here?

Anyway, I shouldn’t have said all this. Now I would be alleged as the war-monger. Be that as it may, but such vague refernces to my person prompted me to do this. Sorry, if you don’t like, but I shouldn’t be hypocritic.


Huh Says:

“Mr. Perfect Says:
Huh:

tough love for fed? not the time. he needs our support. there is not another man on the planet who could have beaten soda pop yesterday! most players would have been thrashed in straigh sets. i hope the rafatards stop claiming it was rafa’s knees that did him in last year. soda boy vindicated as much by taking down the 2nd greatest clay-courter of this decade with ice-man like cool.”

Thanks man, you understood me. :D
Completely agree upto this much which I have quoted. And never for a moment think that I’d leave Fed or stop supporting him. Honestly speaking, I also did not mean what I said about Fed learning from the other guys ‘in the absolutely literal sense’. God knows Fed’s more than enough for himself!


stu Says:

has anyone realized that even tho he gained a few points at the FO, Nole has actually LOST points overall for Belgrade + Madrid + FO combined? So much for scheduling better and improving year after year. Whatever you may say jane, margot etc – Nole needs to either lift his game or not aspire to be #1.


jane Says:

huh, you have every right to express your views, as do Ben, stu, anyone. I respect your opinions. Indeed, sometimes, tough love is the best kind.

You also make a very strong and valid point especially about Rafa being in the same age group as Djoko and Murray. But he’s certainly done a lot more than either of them! Maybe some day they can scale his heights. Maybe not. He does seem like an extra special player in his focus and mental maturity. By all means, would love it if Nole or Murray could be as level headed and achieve what he has! Some players reach their heights at different rates and/or handle pressure better.

Speaking personally, I felt sad about today’s loss but was trying to look on the brighter side. My nature is to be pessimistic so was just trying to find a better way, a more positive way to look at today’s loss.


jane Says:

stu, I agree with you that he needs to lift his game. But I think (?) he is trying to do that, i.e., that he’s trying to get the serve back on track, trying to improve his health and fitness. He did hire a new trainer last year; he also tried working with Martin. I am not sure what else he needs to do? Maybe it’s mental as Ben says? I don’t know.


Mr. Perfect Says:

Huh:

well said! people need to stop treating tennis professionals as babies. i guess the age group of these people who say they are just 23 or 22 must be in the 40s or something. hello? by the time they reach your ages, they would be retired and with a pot belly like kafelnikov.

and there is a tendency here of “you scratch my back, i scratch yours” among a couple of posters here. sometimes you have to call it as it is. djokovic has been sucking big time since his 1st grandslam win. this guy promised so much and now he has become a real joker. what a shame. i know there are posters here who drool at marat safin and make him into some hero, but truth be told, he is a loser who couldn’t stand the heat of the tour. no shame in it, but dont project him as some major tennis god. please. this guy might have had such a evil influence on players like murray and djokovic.

we live in such a shallow society, where the hardwork that sampras and lendl put in are “geek-like” or nerdish but slackers like safin are heroes because they give you some momentary lecherous pleasure. really? very sad really.


Huh Says:

And again for the ones who referred to me indirectly:

Why the hell did you feel the urge to bring Fed even into ur imagination, let alone conversation? He’s truly incomparable to Muzza/Nole, I mean it, until they prove otherwise to me. If so much offense is being taken on some comapring the performances of Nole with even Rafa who’s also as young as Nole (It’s another thing that Rafa’s better than your two guys when we compare them with each other, and that’s why he’s been winning slams since 2005, when he was just about 18/19 yrs old while all your guys have done upto now is just whine and make excuses), then why have the audacity to compare your guys with Roger Federer and unnecssarily bring him into discussion? Has Federer fallen so below as to have to go through the ordeal of being compared to youyr guys, especially when it is being acted as if something unreal on our part or irrelevant on our part to comapre him with Rafa? Why drag Fed into discussion? Inexplicable! Fed must be mainly compared to his peers like Roddick, Hewitt, Safin and it’s a testament to Rafa’s genius that despite being 5 yrs younger and 10 slams behind, he’s already being compared to/ measured against Roger Federer! And moreover, Cilic is also two/three years younger to your Nole/Muzza, so please spare him, I request!

Keep rejoicing on your guys’ fighting defeats against players like Kohl, Melzer, Berdych etc.


sar Says:

This happens to top players sometimes; they are upset in big matches by an underdog.

Jane, you are right! Look at what happened to Roddick by Gaba.


Huh Says:

Mrs. Jane:

Just saw your post to me. Thanks for your response. Let’s move on indeed. But I wanna make it quite clear that I like Nole very much and was fully rooting for his win today. It’s often very tough to digest that a player like Nole loses to these lesser players. Be it Nole/Muzza/DP/Rod, these guys are among my faves and I hate to see them lose to guys outside top-10, honestly speaking.

Mrs.Jane, I quite agree with what stu said in his 3.51 post. That’s what I intended to say. I may appear to be harsh on your Nole or Muzza, but the truth is I like them very much, root for them and can’t see them losing to lower ranked players. Period.


Skeezerweezer Says:

No bashing here either, at least none intended. I have high expectations from Nole and Murray, cause I like them and there games, cheer for them both. Hope the best for both and get better soon! They belong IMO battling for the top. Tennis needs more than a 2 man race.


jane Says:

huh, I respect your opinions and think it’s good to hear to other views; sometimes it helps me to see things differently and change my opinions. I know you were hoping for Nole to win – so was I, believe me.


stu Says:

yes, i know he’s trying a number of different things. that might be the problem. he’s trying to fix too many problems at once. trying to to come to the net more. changing his service motion (and the racquet). changing his on-court attitude to be loved by fellow players. losing weight (in an effort to run faster?) and working on his fitness. switching coaches. adding people to his team. Even small changes take some getting used to but all of these within a short time frame could be too much for someone who was already emotionally fragile.

he’s too much of a tennis idealist and needs to tackle the biggest problem (serve) for now – hopefully the rest will follow. having said that, how a pro tennis player can forget to serve is beyond me.


jane Says:

stu, I agree. The serve should be the main focus. One thing at a time. It does seem to be improving. What do you mean by this though? “he’s too much of a tennis idealist” – Can you elaborate?


jane Says:

skeeze – I know dude. : )


stu Says:

i guess im trying to say that i get the feeling he is focussing too much on the technicalities of his game. he wants every shot to be perfect, possibly wants that more than he wants to win the point. 2 or 3 years ago, he relied more on instinct for his shot selection and it worked great. too soon i think he started overthinking it, got all hot and bothered by what people were saying in pressers, got pressured by Murray’s rise and started to make changes that he thought would be good in the long term. thats the reason he’s had spurts of brilliant play (last years clay season). however, i think he made too many changes at once….

im just hypothesizing tho…as a fan who wishes she could live inside his head for a day :)


Huh Says:

Mr. Perfect:

Exactly you said what I am feeling right now about Djokovic! The guy showed so much promise in the beginning, but since then he’s deteriorated and now he gives some abysmal performances. As you said, he has been sucking big time since winning his first slam! And there’s nothing wrong to state it here either. Kudos to you too for making my task easier. :)

I don’t know whether you’re a Nole admirer or not, I guess you’re, but I pointed out all the things regarding him today coz I really expect him to be lot more consistent, but he always falls short in his effort, he often looks like unwilling to come into his real old self in a match and take down the opponent. Too bad he’s busy doing Gypsy video aping Shakira. Aping someone itself may imply that you’ve given up against that person, it’s a funny but also negative attitude, unknowingly it’s like adoring somebody, in this case, it’s like Nole’s adoring Rafa or something. He better focus and be serious, though I already feel that he’s on the verge of reachingn the point of no return of the ‘old Nole’. If he doesn’t correct his mistakes soon, he’d pay for it.Time and tide waits for none and indeed time’s running out for him. Hope he does something about it. I just hope good happens to Nole.


jane Says:

stu “im just hypothesizing tho…as a fan who wishes she could live inside his head for a day :)” – LOL, this would be interesting though i am not sure I’d want to join you in there! Too many changes at once makes sense. Sigh. Well, let’s hope he settles down, focuses, and achieves his best.


Huh Says:

Truly fantastic and enjoyable interview by Rafa.


jane Says:

Yes- Loved Rafa’s presser. It was great. He’s such an admirable champion, who works so hard and is soooooo focused on each step. Funny comments about looking at his watch. LOL!


Dari Says:

“you like my serve and volley, no?”
wow, rafa, you just made the rough day with fed yesterday a bit easier!
is somebody’s english getting better?!!!


Dari Says:

I enjoyed the nadal/almagro match, they both had some incredible shots.
I really would like to see almagro’s footwork and attitude (especially against rafa) improve so that we can really see what he can do.
I am not very excited by the women’s semi’s because the two i wish to win the most are playing each other! i would want jelena or elena to win the whole thing, so it will be tough seeing one of them go.
man, this french open was exhausting and its not even over yet!
as a fed fanatic for years, i wanna say that i don’t want rafa to win so that roger keeps number one, but im not accustomed to rooting AGAINST players, especially, such ones as nadal.
i can say that i do like the conqueror of my favorite to always take the whole thing, though!
i say go sod, but man do i love that T. Berd!
i’ll even give a shout out to melzer.
If no one can make it happen against rafa, then maybe slipping ALLLLL the way down to no. 2 will relieve some pressure from roger and make him a FIGHTER again!
Buen suerte a todos!


I like tennis bullies Says:

here comes the crying and hang wringing from frustrated fanboys lol
fedtards over analyzing one measly point like it was the entire match rotf
he lost and the better man won, deal with it
fed’s french title was a flook


Dari Says:

TennisBullies-
I don’t subscribe to the single point mentality, either, though this was just a notable point and turning point.
I have to skim these types of articles cause i can’t really read the moment by moment analysation.
HOWEVER, i can say with confidence hardly anything Roger Federer does is a FLUKE!


guy Says:

one shot?
try the 60+ winners soderling smacked all day.
stupid article
btw that shot fed hit isn’t some majestic feat, it’s basically the result of a poor smash from the opponent, and plenty of players can hit that shot.
all it is is a slice smash with a bit of air.


skeezerweezer Says:

The “masquerade” 12r year old strikes again. How many poster names you got anyways?


Huh Says:

I like tennis bullies:

So sorry to know that you’re still retarded. Were you again kicked out of the mental hospital?


skeezerweezer Says:

That wasn’t @guy or @dari….

@guy I agree is wasn’t the one shot, and Sod did smack winners at Fed all day ( uh…except for the first set ). IMO the match turned after the 1rst rain break, Fed up 40-15, 5-5, in the 3rd, then Fed had a brain fart from the break…..Sod just kept doin his thing. Kudos to him :)


sar Says:

I already feel that he’s on the verge of reachingn the point of no return of the ‘old Nole’

HUH, I hope you are wrong about that. Look at Soderling who is 25 and just really starting to take off. Nole still has time and just turned 23 a couple of weeks ago. I hope he can get his health back on track but maybe he just has to live with the health problems he has inherited. In fact, if he does have something kind of seriously wrong with him, he’s done a marvelous job of winning 5 MS, 1 MC and 1 GS.


Huh Says:

So far there’ve been some good interviews by players at FO, but I’m glad that Fed’s presser is the best, BY MILES… In recent times, hardly anyone except Roddick handles tough defeats as well as Federer.

PROUD OF FEDERER! HE’S THE GREATEST CHAMPION OF THE RECENT TIMES. He was also smiling during his presser and that smile didn’t have the least amount of insincerity. WAY TO GO FED!!!!!!!


Huh Says:

SAR:

I also hope that Nole returns to his best in the right time and wins at least one more slam, if not more.


dangerouspaul Says:

just compare nadals presser last year to fed’s yesterday..all fed fans can be proud of him. if nadal loses to sod or berdych or melzer he won’t give any credit to them but to his bad play..he still has to learn how to be humble and respectful to fellow tennis pros..that’s the one thing that really pisses me off about nadal…wait and see . the guy can’t lose. it is pathetic..and sad because he is a great player


dangerouspaul Says:

one person here that thinks melzer can beat nadal ????


Huh Says:

Rafa visited Tennis bullies today or not?


Huh Says:

dangerouspaul:

In all honesty, Rafa’s press when he lost to Sod was nowhere close to Fed’s yesterday’s press, no comparing the superiority of Fed’s presser. Agree with you, yeah.


Mr. Perfect Says:

guy:

let me guess, you must be a rafatard like i like bullies. that shot is so easy, eh? why dont u upload videos of other players who have hit those easy shots.

If you can do that in 24hrs, you will be upgraded to a retard. else you will remain a rafatard.

huh:

i am a big fan of djokovic and even murray. but it is high time they man-up. djokovic looked like he sorted things out during last fall ( look at the matches where he banged rafa in 6 ass-whoopping sets during that period) That is the joker i want to see. his fitness issue seem to be a permanent issue. he can never be a dominating no.1 like federer if he has the fitness of a teenager.


Huh Says:

poor ‘guy’.


skeezerweezer Says:

@Mr. Perfect,

“Perfect” :)


sar Says:

Brad Gilbert twitter:

@bgtennisnation First time since 1979 Oz Open semis where no one has won a major… JJ and especially ED are the two best players ever not to have won one. about 6 hours ago


Michael Says:

True that was the point of the match and Soderling made it. If he had not, Federer would have won. That is Tennis.


Huh Says:

Moron tennis bullies simply doesn’t get it that one point indeed can decide the course of the match, like the one which Roddick lost in the 2nd set of WIM 09 that led to his defeat, similarly the one point of MAD 09 match between Nole-Rafa in which Rafa made an amazing get led to his victroy and also the one inside-out FH of Fed vs Haas resulted in him eventually winning not just the match, but also the FO. I don’t care what happened in Fed V. Sod, but it’s not as moronic on the part of anyone to say that Fed lost the match due to one single point in his match vs Fed as it is on the part of tennis bullies to bring up his lunatic outburst here, denying that contention.


Huh Says:

Moron tennis bullies simply doesn’t get it that one point indeed can decide the course of the match, like the one which Roddick lost in the 2nd set of WIM 09 that led to his defeat, similarly the one point of MAD 09 match between Nole-Rafa in which Rafa made an amazing get led to his victroy and also the one inside-out FH of Fed vs Haas resulted in him eventually winning not just the match, but also the FO. I don’t care what happened in Fed V. Sod, but it’s not as moronic on the part of anyone to say that Fed lost the match due to one single point in his match vs Sod as it is on the part of tennis bullies to bring up his lunatic outburst here, denying that contention.


Mr. Perfect Says:

Huh:

dont waste your words on bullies. he/she/it has the brain of a dead donkey. no point flogging a dead horse or donkey in this case.


Von Says:

“…and there is a tendency here of “you scratch my back, i scratch yours” among a couple of posters here. sometimes you have to call it as it is.”

Oh yeah, and big time too!! Speakinkg truthfully, and/or calling it like you see it will earn the dissenter to be relegated to the *sin bin* — it’s a matter of agree or shut up — if you’re not for, then don’t be against. And, if you dare to speak freely and then become attacked by any of the back scratchers, the attacker is complimented and thanked for their *nice words*. OY VEY


Michael Says:

Huh, Tennis is what it is. Federer has won umpteen close matches before and he was lucky. Against Soderling, it was not his day and he lost. All credit to Soderling, who never let Federer settle with his ‘A’ game. What I liked about Soderling was he was not over awed by his opponent. Soderling is not a Verdasco or Berdych or Monfils etc. who rarely wins against the top 5. He does that often and that makes him a great player. The truth of Soderling’s victory was that Federer played near his best and yet lost. This was not in the case say US Open where he lost to Del Potro where Federer played pretty badly to lose.


Sherri Says:

Mr Perfect(yer name says it all)/Skeezerweezer(nuff said ’bout yur name)/Huh (well u r a very confused young fella, very apt moniker) and all the other fedturds out there. Hey, I was one of you once, then personal experience with the Fed’s boorish behaviour totally turned me off. Here’s a list of his oh so gracious behaviour. Should win him many more Sportsman of the year awards.

1. Drop the F word @ USO 2009 whilst addressing the Umpire
2. Refused to shake hands with an Umpire twice (Doha & Miami 2009)
3. Lost to Canas twice in 2008, said drug ban should never have been lifted. Bet he would have praised him to high heaven had he won those 2 matches.
3. Lost to the Joker in Montreal and then called his loss insignificant, btw also called him a joke & a rabbit & to get out of tennis.
4. Shouting at a family in the stands to “BE QUIET”, nice ambassador.
5. 4th set at Wimby, asked for hawkeye to be turned off at a time when rafa was killing him, using the pooh word repeatedly. Accused Uncle Tony of illegal coaching, oh, oh, and he couldn’t see the ball as dusk crept in.
6.Tossing empty drinking bottles willy nilly, totally disregarding whom it may hit.
7. Take a long toilet break then sit down to change a T shirt so that the sun can move just a wee bit & make it easier especially since trailing in a slam.
8. Not shake hands properly with Opponents who beat you & also backhanded comments about them.
9. Cry hysterically @ the AO when he lost, detracting from the glory of the winner.
10. Talk to the press in 2005 saying its going to take a very good player to beat you, then turn around & accuse Marat Safin of gamesmanship ‘cos he beat you (AO 2005)
11. Being so arrogant as to wear a jacket with the number 15 emblazoned on it, quite forgetting how you bawled like a baby just a few months before.
12. Tell the media & everyone who would listen, how special,how talented, they are privileged,watching greatness unfolding.

Then of course ….. RG is where winning on clay matters, wow, what arrogance.

Of course this list is incomplete, so many more to add. http:/answers.yahoo.com/question/index.qid (Federer becoming increasingly arrogant)


madmax Says:

Sherri, what’s the problem? your need to write things uncomplimentary about the best player in the world? Does it irk you that he has achieved so much and given his fans so much joy over the years that you have to pick out isolated incidents over a 12 year career? You’ve mentioned 12 points, so I guess that’s one mistake per year?

I must make about 200 mistakes a day, one of them reading your post above, so if federer has made 12 mistakes in 12 years, just shows even more how great he is.

Von, can you stop your moaning please. You’re becoming a bore, and stop your bashing of posters who disagree with you because you cannot get your own way and got caught out by your ridiculous temper tantrums. Grow up von, or is that too much to ask?

Sherri, this is going to be my second mistake of the day, replying twice to your post. Think of how many players on the circuit who…actually..I’m boring myself now! there is no point in arguing with sherri who enjoys a boring argument, i suppose when players within the tour vote year upon year for Federer and he won another award last night (sherri, read FOT’s post, look at the photos too, they’ll make you even more angry, cos fed looks so good in a suit!), it makes you realise how well respected he is in the game, for all his faults.

What are yours Sherri? Do you have any?


madmax Says:

third mistake.

a lot of the above comments from sherri, taken wayyyyy out of context. just to please.


Sherri Says:

Well Madmax, please stay bored, the facts speak for themselves. For someone who is a rolemodel and one of the greats, not taking anything away from this maestro, his tennis was and is still in many ways superb,and I did say that I was once a fan, way too many incidents of mindless pomp & arrogance to sweep under the carpet. Also, toooo many to be taken out of context. Btw, 12 incidents over 12 years, don’t read very well, do you. re-read, list is incomplete, if u like will list a few more. Yep this type of behaviour, like I said, sure to win him many more accolades. Yep, he looks good in a suit, but then so does Popeye, see the similarity.


kit Says:

i’ve been reading for a long time here but posting just a couple of times, i like what i read, coz posters voiced out their opinion, and when it became too much i just ignored them, but some things just can’t be ignored.

sherri, if you don’t like federer, it’s fine, but don’t try to campaign for it, trying to convince other tennis fans to hate him or not like him, it’s pathetic.

and to von, why the drama? so what if others don’t agree with you, you’re still free to state your opinon. just wondering why it bothered you too much.


Sherri Says:

Gosh Kit, u know what’s pathetic….you, campaign indeed, then in your last paragraph, to paraphrase, “just wondering why it bothered you too much.”
Yes, I’m definitely still free to state my opinion & so is Von, really don’t need yer permission. Rafa bashers will in all probability soon be out wth the tar & feathers, to put me firmly in my place & you know what, it don’t bother me at all. Btw, admire the Feds tennis,always have,I admire him as a tennis player, so where do you see the hate? I have responded to peeps like Mr Perfect (the name implies that Fed is perfect) listing why the Fed is not perfect ‘cos he keeps on harping on ’bout Rafa pickin @ his @ss, seems 2 me he has an @ss fetish. Of course, I do realize that rabid Fedfans like rabid Nadalfans, tend to walk around in cloud cuckooland & refuse 2 believe that their heroes are mere mortals with warts and all.


Huh Says:

Sherri:

So you are the latest anti-Fed here, eh? Rafa-worshipper club awaits you, join it soon, just a friendly suggestion. And of course, try to sound less disgraceful the next time you post here. Learn to hate less, would do you good. Again very important, stop personally attacking the Fed fans or your own Karma will bite you from the backside.


the_mind_reels Says:

@Sherri:

Like kit, I’ve been a reader for a while but don’t post too often. Just wanted to throw in my two cents. (And, for what it’s worth, I’m a fan of Roger’s, which shouldn’t be interpreted as me NOT being a fan of other players — I just happen to pull for Fed.)

Not really sure why you’re griping about Federer’s behavior, particularly when other players have their temper moments, too. Perhaps I’m not one to judge whether he’s more or less sportsmanlike than his fellow players, but I think the other players on tour would be in a good position to do so. And, oh, wait, yeah: the ATP Sportsmanship of the Year award is voted on by the other players on tour.

Maybe Fed is the lesser of many evils out on tour when it comes to attitude/temper/etc., but the rest of his peers seem to think he’s a pretty good role model. You may not think the other players give any real credence to the award and that they just vote without really caring, but I’m not really sure who else is in a better position make a judgement call than them.

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