Nadal Buries Berdych, Somersaults His Way to Second Wimbledon Title
by Sean Randall | July 4th, 2010, 2:05 pm
  • 267 Comments

About the only suspense today’s Wimbledon men’s final offered was how many sets would be played. Three? Four? Maybe for a fourth straight year, five? In the end it was three and the winner was of course top ranked Rafael Nadal who blitzed Tomas Berdych 6-3, 7-5, 6-4 to capture his second Wimbledon trophy and his eighth overall Grand Slam title.

“For sure after not easy year for me,” Nadal said. “Be back on my favorite tournament of the world here and play well another time, and not only play well, so finish with the trophy is amazing for me.”

I thought Berdych got off to a good start but his serve just wasn’t as sharp as it has been. And he seemed to be telegraphing his shots on occasion, especially his forehand. Otherwise he played admirably for a first-time Grand Slam finalist.

Nadal, on the other hand, played like the Nadal we’ve come to expect.

In the first game of the second set with Rafa serving, Nadal uncharacteristically donated two double faults and added in multiple unforced errors, giving Berdych an early sniff at a break and with it the possibility of swinging momentum in his favor.

But Nadal as he does so often didn’t give Berdych an inch when it mattered the most. He saved the break points and with a set already in his pocket it felt Berdych’s last chance had evaporated.

“Today I was a little bit more nervous than usual,” Nadal said after winning his second straight Slam and second straight Wimbledon. “I was a little bit lucky on few moments with the breakpoints. I had two good forehands, and later I have a rally with the slice backhand. So he finish missing the backhand to the net. So I don’t know. I just try my best in every moment, every practice, every point. Important thing is be there all the time. If you are there all the time, you are have more chances to save the breakpoints.”

The key statistic is break points and once again Nadal came up big. For the match Nadal converted four of six tries, Berdych was 0-for-4.

“I think the biggest difference between us was that when he get a chance, he just took it,” said Berdych who has dropped seven consecutive matches to Nadal, all in straight sets. “He give me one in the second set, one in the third set, and none of them I can, you know, bring it to my side and just made a break. That just show how strong he is. I think it was just really about the small difference.”

The victory ties Nadal with tennis greats Andre Agassi, Ivan Lendl and Jimmy Connors with 8 career Grand Slam titles. And remember the guy just turned 24 – only Bjorn Borg was younger than Nadal to win 8.

If he can stay healthy – and that’s always a big if with Rafa – a year from now he very well could be in double figure Slams. But now we are looking far ahead.

For the moment, the win almost seals the 2010 No. 1 Ranking for Rafa. Roger Federer, who’s now No. 3, and the second-ranked Novak Djokovic can mathematically still overtake Nadal by year’s end, but unless Nadal sustains a serious injury or someone gets ultra-hot, no one is going to catch him. In fact, the No. 1 ranking will be his through next March.

The victory also gives Nadal his second French Open-Wimbledon Slam double, which one behind Borg – a pretty incredible record.

For Berdych, despite his loss to Nadal the he ends a memorable 45 day or so stretch during which we saw Tomas mature right before out eyes. He reached the French Open semifinals and then at Wimbledon racked up impressive wins over Federer and Djokovic. He’ll now return to the top 10 and hopefully remain a factor at future Slams.

“If I’m gonna get there and I’m gonna stay there for a couple of years, then I can tell you yes, I can do that,” said Berdych about becoming Top 5 player. “That’s what I’m trying to do every day when I go for practice, for match, for everything. So right now I’m still, yeah, climbing higher and higher. But still it can go little bit more. But just, you know, need more tournaments, more matches.”

What’s remarkable about Rafa is just four months ago the guy hadn’t won a title in forever. Now look at him.

“So last seven months or six months of 2009 season I wasn’t ready to play at this level,” said Nadal who was twice pushed to five sets in the early rounds last week. “I was ready to fight, but not to play like I am doing now. The positive thing in that seven months is I didn’t lose in first round, second round, no? I wasn’t ready to win, but I was there all the time, semifinals, quarterfinals, one time one final in Shanghai. So without playing well, I had not bad results.”

And now there’s no doubting he’s back.

Nadal finished off Berdych behind another unreturnable signature forehand. He then appropriately fell to the dirt (not grass) and after the requisite handshakes he unveiled a new celebratory routine: the somersault. But what isn’t new is the power of Rafa.


Also Check Out:
Tomas Berdych: If It’s Too Dark For Hawk-Eye Isn’t It Too Dark For Us To Keep Playing?
Tomas Berdych: Novak Djokovic Is The Fittest Player On Tour
Roger Federer And Andy Murray Are Both Ranked Outside Of The Top 6!
Roger Federer: I Loved My First Hit on Grass
Tomas Berdych: “I Think We Are In The Best Era Of Our Sport Ever”

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267 Comments for Nadal Buries Berdych, Somersaults His Way to Second Wimbledon Title

montecarlo Says:

Congrats Nadal and Congrats to Sean too for getting his third pick right (although his first pick was Hewitt and second was Soderling).


JCK Says:

Sean, kudos to you to predict the outcome (but IIRC, you predicted 4 sets). I’ve enjoyed your writing on this site.

But I have to correct you on the Nadal-Borg comparison: No, I don’t think Nadal has tied with Borg yet. Borg, IIRC, won the FO-Wimbledon doubles for at least four years in a row. (Someone has access to the record book can correct me if I’m wrong.) I’m a fan of both Borg’s and nadal’s. I’m hoping Rafa will match Borg in another two years. (knock on wood)


Rafa is weak Says:

sorry sean, borg did it 3straight years – 78, 79 and 80. he did not chicken out like rafa at wimbledon nor did he lose to a soda pop kind of guy at RG in between his 1st and 2nd doubles.

rafa can only dream of doing this triple double. not even with his fake injuries or illegal coaching.


sheila Says:

is there anyone who can challenge nadal in a final or is he the only one thats going to keep winning slams for @ least, the next couple years. i knew berdych would pull a soderling. they both have the game to win nadal, but the difference, which you can c in nadal’s face, is the determination & the heart. my ? is can federer win another couple of majors? will nadal win more majors than federer? i guess thats 2 ?s. its obvious federer will never get back #1 ranking, but hopefully, somehow he can pull off another wimbledon. also when i was watching coverage john mcenroe brought up the fact that nadals knees looked fine & the only time he complained about his knees is when he was down 2 sets to 1 against petschner. y did he bring that up?


Sean Randall Says:

JCK, Rafa is weak, you guys are right and I corrected the story. Borg with the French Open/Wimbledon three straight years.

Rafa is weak, dream? He’s 14 matches away and right now he’s the favorite to the win French next year, isn’t he. Wimbledon will be tough.

You also might want to think about a new handle, no?


topspin Says:

Eat your heart out rafa haters!!!!

hahahahaha


Nadal is the GOAT Says:

Great performance from Rafa. 7000 ranking points in just 3 months? That’s just crazy!!!


pro rafa Says:

great match played by bot players
but in the end as always Rafa proved to be too hot to handle no?
rather than comment on his so called surprising 2 back to back 5 setters against virtual unknowns, i would rather call it a test to his knees no?
he wanted to know for himself for sure that he could survive 5 sets and come back 4m 2 sets to 1 down and go on to win the match in case he had to do it in later stages no?
what better way to do it against 2 players with very little on court experience than to try it on a maybe i don’t know SODERLING?
despite his tough draw, i always knew that he’d win…. For sure, he’s gonna break every record there is to break in tennis(i mean the good ones like federers 16 slams)
Vamos RAFA Vamos!!!!!


guy Says:

@rafa is weak

you’re actually trying to belittle nadal because he’s ‘only’ won french/wimby back to back twice, in an era this tough? you really are an idiot.


leo vixen Says:

All you Rafa haters can eat s**t and die! Say what u want and find all the excuses you want, but Nadal Is number 1 and has 8 Grand Slams and no one can take that away from him.
He may never tie the records of Federer or Sampras but he is a lot happier in his own skin than most of you losers are.
And can anyone explain to me why some players are allowed to consult with their “box” when it comes to challenging calls and they don’t get fined $2,000? How is that not illegal coaching in some form or another? If u are man enough to play in a Wimbledon final, you should be man enough to decide on your own whether you should challenge a call or not.


Andrew Miller Says:

Interesting Nadal wants to win US Open. Kind of feel it will be more of the same as years past for Rafa on hard courts: season’s wear and tear catches up to him, maybe delivering one hardcourt win, an early loss, and maybe a QF or SF at the US Open, with a strong for anyone else, average for Nadal performance at the indoors.

To me, Murray looks like the world’s #2 on hard courts. And he also likes playing New York, and should learn from the AO Final and Wimbledon Semifinal. Murray is different on a hardcourt – he’s a better player on the hardcourts, and he likes them!

Informal Hardcourt ranking…

Federer, 1 (AO Win)
Murray, 2 (AO Finalist)
Nadal, 3 (Wimbledon Momentum)
Roddick, 4 (Miami Win, Indian Wells Final)
Del Potro, 5 (2009 US Open win – Del Potro would be 3 or 2 but the injuries…)
Tsonga, 6 (2010 Semifinal AO)
Djokovic, 7 (Nostalgia)
Verdasco and Ferrer (who knows?)


Andrew Miller Says:

As for the record books, I dont think Rafa’s going to pass the Federer 16 in slam wins. Federer showed some extraordinary wins in AO and USOPen, and Rafa has one AO win and strategically, that win basically ruined the rest of his 2009.

So Rafa owns French Open. He may have another Wimbledon or two in him. And what else? The tennis ball on a hard court sits up for other players – Berydch and Roddick are different beast for Nadal on the hardcourt (I think Roddick would have made more of a match on the Wimbledon greens, at least nabbing a set from the Champ).

So, it could happen. I doubt it will happen. I think Nadal’s the best French and Wimbledon player. I think he’s not the best hardcourt player.


jane Says:

“7000 ranking points in just 3 months?” Wow, that does seem like a lot. Congrats again to Rafa and his supporters.


bobby Says:

Great win for Rafa.I hope he will win atleast 5 wimbledons,French open atleast 8,AUS open atleast 4,US open atleast 2 times and become the greatest ever.Wish Rafa all the luck in the world to achieve this.


Skeezerweezer Says:

Congrats to Rafa and Zola, Anna, Aleish, & Mindy.!!! Rafa has proven he rules in 2010. Hope u know I predicted his win over the Bird in straights :).

@montecarlo. Your a liar. I hope u take that back what you said in the other thread with my name in it. U know what I am talkin about . I don’t “hate” any player, and I will tell u directly if I do. Don’t ever assume with me that if I said this or that means I hate the man. I know ur excited, but don’t take it out on hhe posters, why not talk about how great Rafa is and his great accomplishments this spring/summer?


blank Says:

Congrats to Rafa and his fans. Truly a terrific performance.

Hope he keeps it up and the other three in the top 4 pick start playing well. If not, when I go to watch them in Toronto I will pelt stones at them.

DelPo, come back soon please!!


Skeezerweezer Says:

@Leo vixen

U are right and this has been discussed during the Wimby tourney. IMO they should get rid of coaching on court altogether or let them coach. Now, the guidelines and rules are so vague it’s unfair for everyone. They need to make it more black or white in my IMO. It will benefit all players, Rafa included, no?


sonic Says:

Well done to Nadal, not for beating piec of shit Berdych (who managed to hold serve an outstanding 1! time when serving to stay in set…pathetic), but for taking out Soderling and Murray. Shame a real player hasn’t made it to the final to day, after so many great WImbledon finals to see such a horrible match was pretty painfull. Roddick should’ve really made the final this year.

One had to note how inceridbly slow and bouncy this year’s Wimbledon was. When Soderling can’t hit a winner past Nadal on grass you know things have goe to shit. Some of the points i’ve seen this year on grass should never have been played. What i’d give to see Wimbledon with condition of, say Wimbledon in 2000, next year…just to see the shock on player’s faces. You’d never see crap like Berdych making the final back then.

Perhaps Murray can urge the change, it would suit his game.


grendel Says:

Sean says “Wimbledon will be tough” for Nadal next year. Considering what we have just seen, why should that be? Of course you don’t want to glibly talk about certainties, but assuming Nadal is healthy, surely he must be considered a big favourite. As of now, anyway. Obviously something unforeseen may turn up. Hard to see what, though. Fact is, Nadal is still a young man in tennis terms.


SG Says:

I’ll be interested to see how the tennis landscape changes with Del Potro back in the mix next year (assuming his wrist is fully healed).

I’m also quite interested in the reactions of Federer fans to Nadal being on top right now. Actually, I’m equally interested in Rafa fan reaction to him being on top right now.

4 or 5 years ago, Sampras fans were angered by Federer fans calling Fed the best ever when he had 6 or 7 slams. Now, as some Rafa fans are implying that he might be better than Federer, it seems the Fed fans react as the Sampras fans did. Interesting indeed.

Here’s are some things to keep in mind. As I sse it, you have no chance to be considered the best ever unless you a) have more slams than anyone and/or b) have the won a calendar slam with a decent number of other slam wins. Any reasonably level headed fan should recognize that Rafa is nowhere near the Federer level of career greatness…yet. 16 slam vs. 8! 23 straight slam semi-finals! The type of domination rarely seen in any sport. Rafa has a long way to go match Fed’s accomplishments. And Fed has done it at every slam. Rafa?…not yet. I’m more of a Rafa fan than Fed fan and I can see it quite clearly.

And to the Federer fans…respect is earned, never given. Rafa has toppled your guy more times than not, on every surface. He deserves his due.

Personally, I doubt Rafa will come close to 16 slams. I’m thinking 12 (13 slams on the outside). His game is just too hard to play. And he’ll eventually fall victim to age (if not injury) sooner or later.

b) win


ron Says:

@SG

Rafa is 24, Fed 29, so Rafa can play 20 more slams until he reaches 29…and only wins 4 of them to bring him to 12? Seems highly pessimistic.


Voicemale1 Says:

Yeah I agree with Grendel about Sean’s comment on Wimbledon being “tough” for Nadal next year. Sean – you realize Nadal hasn’t lost a match there since 2007, and since he played his opening match in 2006 his Wimbledon record is 26-2, right? Other than Federer is there someone out there with a better Wimbledon record than Nadal’s?


Voicemale1 Says:

Andrew Miller:

So Murray’s better than Nadal on a hard court? Nadal actually won the Australian Open; he’s won 5 Maters 1000 Events on hard courts (Canada twice; Indian Wells twice; Madrid indoors); Olympic Gold Medal; and Dubai (beating Federer in the Final).

Murray’s done better than that?


DH Says:

Rafa’s biggest challenge for the next 3 years will be his knees…..
His game is tough on the body. He’s more offensive now and that should help but with all the hard running and stopping he does, it takes a toll.

This year is probably his best chance at winning the US Open. Del Potro is out, Fed is less confident (but still amazing when he needs to be), Djoko is up and down…..Really Murray is his biggest competition.

I also think 16 Slams in unrealistic for Rafa. He should be happy if he reaches 12 (that beats Borg).


Andrew Miller Says:

Hi Voicemail1 – I think Murray’s a better hardcourt player at the moment for three of five set matches. Nadal better lifetime, but Murray is right there on the hardcourts (and beat Nadal at the US Open in an epic match, counts for something!).

Certainly Nadal could nab the US Open this year – I think it’s a tough tournament for him. He’s usually a little tired in New York – pulling one thing or another (injury wise). So unless he has the gift of what happenned this year (losing early before Wimbledon to give some extra practice time) – maybe by a QF in Canada and a shock loss in Cincinatti, then I think he can focus his full energy at a US Open title.

Still, I think Murray prefers a match against Nadal in New York than on any other court in the world. Not saying he wins it outright, but he certainly believes more in New York and has a few slam finals on hardcourts (though as you note, no Slam titles like Nadal).


DH Says:

What are the repercussions for completely skipping a Masters series tournament?

And I don’t mean saying you are injured when you’re really not.

What would happen if a player just said: “I’m not coming”?


zola Says:

Skeezer,

Thanks a lot and all the best for your man, who has already his place in history.
————–

We will see if Rafa is better than Andy or other players on various surfaces. Hopefully there will be plenty of chance to see them in a match.

This is interesting regarding Rafa/Roger comparison:
**************

Nadal’s coach, his Uncle Toni, was asked after the match if he thought Rafa was as good as Federer.

“No,” Toni said flatly. “Federer, he won six times here. Rafael only two. And Federer has 16 Grand Slams, and Rafael only eight.”

Will Rafa ever catch Federer?

“Very difficult,” Toni said. “I don’t know, but if I put money, I say no.”
http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/tennis/wimbledon10/columns/story?columnist=garber_greg&id=5353865
*****


Andrew Miller Says:

Voicemail1, here are Murray’s hardcourt results. Not half bad! Maybe no Slam title and no Olympic gold, but nonetheless, something in his corner.

14 Titles, 13 hardcourt and 1 grass court. Of those, four were Masters (Canada, Miami, Cincinatti, Madrid-indoors).

Nadal has 40 titles, with 6 Masters on hardcourts (Australian Open, Two Indian Wells titles, Two Canada titles, one Madrid-Indoor title). Nadal has 9 hardcourt/indoor titles overall, eight of them being majors or slams (1, Australia), and one being Dubai.

So: seven harcourt/indoors Masters for Nadal vs. four Masters of same type for Murray; Nadal has one Slam on hardcourts in one final appearance vs. Murray zero for two on two continents.

Sounds like a fair matchup to me, with Murray currently playing better hardcourt tennis (by a small bit, not much! A confident Nadal may take out Murray on the hardcourts, but Murray is a different beast at hardcourt slams!)


jatt Says:

@DH,

completely agree with you..”the knee factor”..
as for 16 slams lets think from a different angle.If rafa plays like this for next 4 years I think he can do it and he may even pass fed…and particularly with the way he is improving his game..but still a long way to go to assume anything..


jane Says:

I can see Rafa winning four more slams and beating Borg for sure.

SG: “His game is just too hard to play.” – I did’t catch much of Wimbledon, bits here and there, but I did see the entire final, and I have to say that Rafa’s game is “transformed” insofar as he ends points more quickly. This has been true from Monte Carlo through to the Wimbledon final. He is hitting his shots with more depth, looking to dictate, and we saw how he managed that with Berdych today, pushing him from side to side, front to back. And his serve seems more powerful and fast. He still has those great retrieval abilities, of course, which were most evident today when he had a chance to break Tomas. He got to shots that would’ve been winners against many players. So my point is that I am not too sure his style of game is that “hard to play” anymore. Plus if he and his team continue to hone his schedule, dropping extraneous events like Rotterdam, Barcelona, Dubai even, then I can totally see him winning at least 4-6 more slams. Who knows? Maybe more. I guess it depends somewhat on how the competition manage to adapt to him and/or how he fares on hardcourts too. But like he said, he wasn’t even at his best last year yet was still reaching semis/quarters/finals of late summer / indoor hard court events. Rafa is a force to be reckoned with. Providing he managed the tendonitis, and no other serious injuries occur, he’s got another 2-3 years of serious slam contention.


SG Says:

ron Says:
@SG

Rafa is 24, Fed 29, so Rafa can play 20 more slams until he reaches 29…and only wins 4 of them to bring him to 12? Seems highly pessimistic.

————————–

Yup. That’s how I see it. 4, maybe 5 more slams on the outside. A healthy DelPo will be a threat to Rafa on every surface. Sooner or later, Murray and Djokovic have to get things figured out and kick in for 4 or 4 slams. There’s Federer who’ll still be a threat in the next couple of seasons on hardcourts and grass. And of course, out there somewhere, lurks a young hungry lion like Fed, Sampras, Nadal etc…

His game will wear him down physically. It has to. He’s only human. We’ve already seen signs of his body breaking down. And sooner or later, Rafa’s mind has to weaken, even if it’s ever so slightly. In that moment, his slam window will close. As great as Rafa is, his game is far more violent and punishing than Federer’s. All that violence has to eventually cause sholder and knee problems.

Tennis changes pretty fast. We’ve had Fed and Rafa for roughly 5 years now. Nature deplores a vacuum. Expect the unexpected. Just when you think something’s going to happen it doesn’t. When Fed was at 10 majors people were saying he’d win 20. When he was 13, the same people that he was at the end of the road. Than Rafa was injured and he won 3 of the next 4 slams. Isn’t tennis great!


Andrew Miller Says:

Whoops. Nadal has nine hardcourt titles, 7 being Masters, one AO and one Olympic gold.


Andrew Miller Says:

Whoops again. I am not with it mathwise again. Sorry. Just to say: I think Murray has a shot at a hardcourt slam, better than Roddick at this point.


zola Says:

DH

I think if a player has played 600 matches, he can skip one master series without penalty.
If not, they have to have an excuse like injury or something and I think some still need to go to the tournament for the sponsor activities etc.

from ATP site:
http://www.atpworldtour.com/Rankings/Rankings-FAQ.aspx#injury
*****
Players with direct acceptance who do not play an ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament will be suspended from a subsequent ATP World Tour Masters 1000 event which will be the next highest point earned ATP World Tour Masters 1000 event within the next 12 months.
****


jane Says:

DH “What would happen if a player just said: “I’m not coming”?

If a player has played a certain number of matches [or years] (can’t remember exact details, but I know both Roddick and Fed qualify), then they are allowed to opt out of one of the nine Masters events per tour year. If they miss more than that, they get fined I think, or lose points (again, I can’t remember the exact details, but they are all available, posted at the ATP site).


jane Says:

zola, thanks for posting the “Exact” information. : ) I was too lazy to look it up.


jane Says:

zola, thanks for posting the “Exact” information. : ) I was too lazy to look it up.


SG Says:

Jane,

I really don’t think his game has transformed much from when he won Wimbledon last time. Rafa wins most matches with sheer will and determination and the fact that he doesn’t have a glaring weakness. His backhand is better than it was 5 years ago. Other than that his game has not evolved a lot because he hasn’t been forced to change it.

Rafa’s inner confidence comes from beating Federer umpteen times when it mattered most. Confidence is a funny thing though. There may come a time when someone gets into Rafa’s head the way he’s in Fed’s. A big mentally tough slugger like DelPo could give Rafa a run for his money. Who knows?


zola Says:

Jane,
lol! we osted at the same time.

SG,
Rafa’s game has not changed much? The faster serves? placement? the backhand slice? the new flatter forehand?

Rafa and Toni has always said he wants to improve. with or without Federer in sight. In fact in 2007 him and Uncle Toni both said for Rafa to stay in top, he needs to improve his game. Not because of Federer,because there is no shame being second to Federer, but because of the up and coming generation. Today we see their prediction was true.


zola Says:

SG,
sorry, you were referring to the last Wimbledon and I posted a quote from 2007!

In 2008, Rafa started winning power hitters like Blake and Youzhny and Tsonga, but still did not have the best serve. I think the new forehand and faster serves are also some improvements since 2008. He is even more aggressive and tends to finish the points faster.


DH Says:

Thanks Zola and Jane!! Good to know….

and Jane I totally agree with you…..Rafa should drop those extraneous unnecessary tournaments (for the sake of his knees) and only play the Master’s series events and the Slams.

For his game, less really is more.

When he plays enough tournaments, he should then drop Cincinnati….that is the worst hard court in the world for him IMO. Kinda like how Roddick and Federer seem to skip Montecarlo these days……Rafa OWNS that tournament more than ANY other.


WTF Says:

Nadal and Federer seem to like trading with each other.

2008: Nadal wins French Open then Wimbledon. Takes #1 ranking from Federer.
2009: Nadal loses French and Wimbledon to Federer but claims an Australian Open title as consolation. Federer wins French and Wimbledon to regain #1 from Nadal.
2010: Federer loses French and Wimbledon back to Nadal, but claims an Australian Open as consolation. Nadal regains his French and Wimbledon titles and takes back the #1 from Federer again.

Will Nadal win the Australian Open next year and lose both his FO and Wimb titles and the #1 ranking again?

I’ve already mentioned this, but it seems Robin Soderling’s fate is also tied to these two.

Soder defeats the #1 player in the world and defending champion (Nadal) in Paris, then loses to the #2 player in the final (Federer). He gets a rematch against that player (Federer) in Wimbledon, and loses again. The player that beats him goes on to win the Wimbledon title. Repeat the same thing the following year, but swap the #1 and #2 players.

It’s going to be very hard for Federer to finish #1 this year. He has not played particularly well since Melbourne. No titles since. Doesn’t look like winning another. More and more people are able to beat him now, including those he hasn’t lost to in a very long time, such as Hewitt (15 wins in a row), Soderling (12 wins in a row) and Berdych (8 wins in a row). Even if he wins the US Open, it’s going to be hard for him to scrape together enough points to surpass Nadal, and Fed seems to be the kind of guy that wants it. It means a lot more to him than it does to Nadal.

If Del Potro is still out by the time the US Open begins, I think Nadal has a very good chance of pulling off the triple. He’ll need some luck, and for the right people to lose of course. The biggest threat he faces is Murray if there is no Del Potro. He is capable of beating Federer and Djokovic on any surface. Unfortunately, with Djokovic #2 now, he will almost certainly have either Federer or Murray in his half of the draw. He would prefer Djokovic.


DH Says:

And where the heck is Gulbis?
That guy is crazy talented!!
Is he THAT injured?

He could so be a FORCE-TO-RECKON-WITH if he only got his head together…..


Sean Randall Says:

Grendel/Voicemale, I wouldn’t consider Nadal’s triumph this year at Wimbledon as easy, would you? Perhaps the final, yes, but overall this probably was his toughest Grand Slam title when you account for two five setters and a four setter he endured entering the final.

So why couldn’t it be equally as tough for Rafa next year?


jane Says:

SG, I see Rafa as hitting with more depth now, deliberately. That pushes a guy back, and some big guys don’t move quite as well.

You’re right that someone could get into Rafa’s head. At the end of last year, I would’ve said Soda has, but Rafa seems to have overcome that, with wins in both clay and grass slams this year. As for Delpo, so far Rafa is okay.

Delpo’s record against some top guys:

3-4 v Rafa
0-3 v Djok
1-5 v Murray
2-6 v Fed
3-0 v Roddick
2-1 v Soda

I don’t know, I still see Rafa as formidable in his adaptability and mental strength. But I can see him stopping at 4 more slams if some players step it up, which would still be pretty great. On the other hand, I wouldn’t be surprised if he wracked up more than 4 more slams either.


grendel Says:

I too wondered what would happen if a player just said “I’m not coming. So there.” Sorry, couldn’t resist last phrase. Well, a fine is obviously no deterrent and, bearing in mind Nadal’s huge point lead, nor would suspension from one Masters be. On the other hand, Nadal might find it embarrassing. Would he consider tanking? One thing I am certain of, the Nadal team will go all out for the US Open this year – I am not saying he can’t win it any other year, of course not, but this year is by far his best bet. So something must be done to protect those knees.

SG says:”I’m also quite interested in the reactions of Federer fans to Nadal being on top right now”. Can’t speak for anyone else of course, but my main feeling is that – as Daniel said, an era has ended. When Nadal first became #1, it seemed a bit musical chairish, if you know what I mean. And this continued when Fed resumed #1, had a definite provisional feel about it.

This feels for real, though. Nadal really is #1 and will continue to be so for at least two years, I should have thought. And whoever replaces him, it won’t be Federer. I am quite sanguine abpout that, personally. Federer has had a damn good run, and he is clearly not the player he was. That’s normal. I still hope Fed can cause some damage from time to time.

This “lurking young hungry lion” SG mentions as a potential threat to Nadal – well, I see him nowhere, especially with the depressing news filtering in re delPo’s injury. Will he ever be properly back?


grendel Says:

Zola – I certainly wouldn’t call Youzhny a power hitter, actually he’s much more in the Federer mould, otherwise I rather agree with what you say. I suspect you are talking at crosspurposes with SG, though, since it may be that he agrees Nadal has improved, but that the game in a fundamental sense, in terms of wear and tear, remain the same. Whether that is true or not, I am not qualified to comment, but one thing I would agree with SG is the mental thing. Keeping that extraordinary focus going year after year after year – that may be asking rather a lot.


jane Says:

WTF, Totally don’t dispute that Nadal is capable of beating Nole on any surface, and he’s proven it. However, since 2007 Nole does have a 7-3 H2H vs.Rafa on hard, so his best shot at beating Rafa is on hard courts. He was pretty close at Bejing even, but for an ill timed overhead smash. : )


Sean Randall Says:

I would agree with SG to some degree. Nadal’s career arc will not be like Federer’s. By the time Nadal’s 29 I don’t think he’ll still be fighting for No. 1. The style he plays is just too tough.

And with Federer fading, guys like DelPo, Murray and that hungry lion who’s out there somewhere will challenge. That’s what great about sports and tennis, there will always be another guy just waiting. Just think ihow many of the current Top 10 will still be there 10 years from now? One or two at very most (I’d say zero).

So as they say there’s always another train comin…


WTF Says:

DH Says:

What are the repercussions for completely skipping a Masters series tournament?

And I don’t mean saying you are injured when you’re really not.

What would happen if a player just said: “I’m not coming”?

According to the ATP website, you get 0 points for it (I’m not sure why that is considered a punishment, since you would have got 0 points anyway), and you get suspended from the next ATP 1000 event, which sounds counter productive to someone who just can’t be bothered. Skipping Canada and then getting banned from playing Cincinatti might actually do more help than harm. However, he’s still going to need some match practice, and it’s not a good idea to go from one slam to the next without any warmup events in between.

He’s won both Canada events, so he should probably skip that (better to pull a fake injury excuse than just say “I can’t be bothered”) and try to win Cincy.


SG Says:

Grendel,

I agree with your post 100%. As for the young lion…he’s put there somewhere. Becker came out of nowhere. So did Nadal to a degree. The guy’s out there. I wish I knew where he was exactly. I’d be rich.


zola Says:

grendel,
Youzhny in the Federer mould? What is he doing that reminds you of Federer? vollying? serve? movement?

He won matches against Rafa mainly by hitting hard to Rafa’s forehand. He did not strike me as an artful player like Federer or perhaps Gasquet. But I will watch him more.

Surely there is not a radical change in Rafa’s game. But he is definitely playing much better than 2008.

If by the mental aspect you mean that Rafa might lose interest in the game, that is pure speculation. Only time will tell. As for his focus and will to win, I think it is n intrinsic value and will remain with Rafa as long as he plays.


zola Says:

I think Rafa if healthy can beat most of the players on any surface but Djoko is one of the toughest opponents and I will always go 50-50 for their matches. I think the final would have been very different if it had been played between Rafa and Djoko . Just because of the way Djoko plays and moves.


WTF Says:

Sorry but hungry lions do not come out of nowhere. You can always see their talent and potential at least a year or two before they begin winning titles.

Berdych himself was hyped to be one of these, but he did not deliver. At 24 if he starts winning slams now, he’ll be considered a late bloomer. Marat Safin was another. And Andy Murray as well as Nole. So far Murray has not got the monkey off his back, and Djokovic remains a single slam wonder.

Nadal himself started the tour at age 15, and many people said a lot of good things about him, but it wasn’t until he was 18 that his career took off. This is the kind of lion I’m talking about. You do see them coming. They have a lot of qualities, they just can’t put it all together. I have not seen a player who no one heard about just winning a major like that.

Current youngsters people talk about being tomorrow’s big threat are Kei Nishikori and Gulbis. Donald Young was meant to be one too, though he is still young to be fair. However I’m skeptical of Young until I see him in the second week of majors.


WTF Says:

zola Says:

“I think Rafa if healthy can beat most of the players on any surface but Djoko is one of the toughest opponents and I will always go 50-50 for their matches. I think the final would have been very different if it had been played between Rafa and Djoko . Just because of the way Djoko plays and moves.”

I don’t think so. I think Rafa would rather have played Djoko in that Wimbledon final than Berdych. I saw Djokovic playing Berdych and he looked tired. He did not have a particularly difficult path getting to the semis. He thrashed Lu a couple of days earlier. But you know what? He looked tired in that match. He was physically out of breath. The guy has stamina issues. That is no secret. I just don’t think he’s built for a prolonged match and that’s exactly what Rafa would have given him. I doubt Rafa would have just rolled over and let him win in straight sets. If it gets to 4 or 5 sets late into a tournament, Nole just can’t endure it.

I remember him cramping and getting tired in his AO final against Tsonga after one set. He needed the trainer to fix his legs. This was a night time match and he had two days of rest. Weather was not a problem. It’s hard to believe, but he did make it to that final without dropping a set!

It would be understandable if Nole played some long matches going in before getting tired, but he gets tired even when he doesn’t. His tolerance of extreme weather conditions is also poor. I’ve heard he has asthma or something. Maybe some bug that makes it hard for him to breathe. I’m not saying his fitness problems are his fault, but he is who he is, and sooner or later he’ll run out of gas.


zola Says:

WTF
***
Sorry but hungry lions do not come out of nowhere. You can always see their talent and potential at least a year or two before they begin winning titles.***

totally agree. look at Rafa , Delpo, Djoko,..even Federer..

About Djoko, obviously he had some issues in this tournament and that is why he lost in straights to Berdych. But if for some reason he could have been in the final, the dynamics could have been very different. I agree he has stamina issues and breathing problems, but remember the 4-hour Madrid SF of 2009? Berdych was a very difficult opponent too but different style of play.


WTF Says:

Jon Wertheim: “• Novak Djokovic faltered yet again in the semifinal round of a major. If I’m in his camp, I’m less concerned with the result than the huffing and puffing that occurred midway through the second set of a balmy day.”

Hard to believe, but that’s precisely what happened. He is still going to be a threat to Nadal on a hardcourt, but since they are both high ranked, the only time they can meet is late in the tournament, and by then he just might be worn out like he was at Wimbledon.

I might have been harsh on him about his fitness, but for a #2 player in the world that just isn’t good enough. It’s hard to take him seriously as a top 2 or 3 player. You never see Federer, Nadal, or Murray out of breath, even when they’ve had tougher roads getting to the same point as him.


DH Says:

Murray looked very good in his loss to Nadal.
It was really a handful of points that decided that match…and Nadal won those crucial points.

On a hard court Murray seems to play much better.
I think Federer’s subtle decline benefits Murray the most.

He has already conquered Nadal at hardcourt Grand Slams, but never Federer…

I think the draw at the US Open this year could be critical.
If I were Nadal, I would rather have Federer on my half of the draw vs. Murray.

Either way, I think it’s only a matter of time (probably short) until Murray wins his first Grand Slam. I would be shocked if his first GS was not on a hardcourt.


skeezerweezer Says:

Zola @ 7:37 pm

And with respect to WTF ( BTW your poster name is soo cool, but it would have been perfect if you put the ! at the end, ala “WTF!” or better “WTF?” )

I agree, Nole, assuming both are healthy, has the nest groundstroke game to grind it out with Rafa and most importantly, somewhat neutralize Rafa’s serve out wide. What amazes me about your guy is his game is so simple, but his heart and mental toughness is unmatched.

I mean, he can’t hit a flat serve, his slice on his BH is not a slice technically, it’s a chop.

HOWEVER, his FH is unmatched as he can use that one stroke to singlehandedly control a point. AND, he has the best lefty wide out serve in the game that sets up the open court. It amazes me how no one can handle this, pretty much. All credit to Rafa. I would be doin the same thing. Hey, I have a simple formula that I execute well, and beat everyone at it. So until you guys figure it out, just keep handin me the trophy. I am NOT saying he does not have other game…just sayin what is obvious :)


aleish17 Says:

A big THANK YOU for all the posters here who congratulated Rafa fans for Rafa’s slam win today.

Gotta watch the replay coz I was not able to watch the match.


grendel Says:

Actually, SG mentioned Becker as one of the hungry lions, and he kind of did come out of nowhere. Against all expectation, he won Queens in 1985 when he was 17, and the man he beat (Johan Kriek) remarked succinctly that if he served like that at Wimbledon, he would win it. I don’t think many people took much notice of this comment, but I did. I had been following Becker’s progress with great interest – something about him had captured my imagination – and I was hoping that in 2 or 3 years, he would be a major force. I was over the moon when he won Queens. And then at Wimbledon, one after another, they fell. It was extraordinary. Kind of a pity that Kevin Curren had beaten McEnroe, otherwise, we might have had a McEnroe/Becker final – and the 17 year old from nowhere winning that would have made a fairy tale seem prosaic.

Yes, Youzhny is a player of great craft. He often used to practice with Federer (in his prime) and apparently generally beat him. Just goes to show how mental is the game of tennis.

Speaking of mental, I didn’t in any way suggest Nadal might lose interest. I wondered how long he could keep going the intensity of focus. It’s too simple to say it’s intrinsic. Up to a point, of course it is. But the intrinsic, too, is subject to the ravages of time, especially something like focus.

One thing which has always puzzled me is why the American hard court season, in the fall, is supposed to wreak such damage on Nadal’s knees, but the hard court season from the AO onwards to the clay does not. People say, well, January is the beginning of the year, fresh start and so on. Don’t get that. The knees aren’t aware that it is merely March as opposed to September, are they? So what’s going on?


Dan Martin Says:

Sean,

I can’t get into edit stories or columns once they have posted. Do you have extra special access or should I just ask the bosses?

I think Rafa is moving up the historical rankings quite quickly. He is still a long way from Federer or Sampras territory, but winning the most Masters Series/Super 9 events is not trivial, neither is his Gold Medal in 2008. I’d place him ahead of Agassi and Mac now and slightly behind Lendl and Connors. He is on pace to out distance those two and maybe Borg as well. Once he gets to 10 we can start wondering if Pete and Roger need to worry that 14 and 16 are under assault.


DH Says:

@ grendel

Regarding the difference between the two(?) hardcourt seasons….

I think the break the players have from mid-November to beginning of January is crucial. Those poor knees and ankles need time to rejuvenate.

The second hardcourt season comes at the end of a long year. From mid-July to mid-November it’s all hard courts. Yes, indoor carpet is in there too but physiologically it does probably the same damage….

Just look at the number of injuries there are these days. Can we make a “softer” hardcourt?? Please? For the health of these players and for the health of tennis in general??


skeezerweezer Says:

@aleish17

Have fun watchin the replay, a must see for Rafa fans. He was…well……Raaaafffaaaa!
:)


Dan Martin Says:

DH I am okay with surfaces that are user friendly, but I do think Wimbledon needs to think long and hard about whether they over compensated and slowed the courts down too much. I’d like to see all four major have distinct speeds and bounces. Have Paris be the slowest, Melbourne second slowest and London and NY can flip a coin for who has the fastest surface (bad bounces plus super fast grass might be lesser quality tennis so I am open to Wimbledon not being the fastest court). Right now, dry weather, different types of grass and frequently rolled courts have Wimbledon playing like a slow hard court in the second week. Rafa struggled with Hasse and PP as each held serve easily, but by week two the courts have slowed quite a bit. Faster grass courts seem to be a tradition not worth ignoring.


WTF Says:

pro rafa Says:

“great match played by bot players
but in the end as always Rafa proved to be too hot to handle no?
rather than comment on his so called surprising 2 back to back 5 setters against virtual unknowns, i would rather call it a test to his knees no?
he wanted to know for himself for sure that he could survive 5 sets and come back 4m 2 sets to 1 down and go on to win the match in case he had to do it in later stages no?
what better way to do it against 2 players with very little on court experience than to try it on a maybe i don’t know SODERLING?”

I’m beginning to think you might be right. Someone explain to me how two unheralded players, Haase and Petzschner (whom I’d never even heard of until now) in rounds 2 and 3, managed to give Nadal more problems than Murray and Berdych in the final two rounds? At least Soderling took a set off him.

I can only wonder how a Federer-Nadal final would have turned out. Another classic? I’d still have to give the edge to Rafa given Fed’s recent form, but I think he would have made more of a match than Berdych did.


DH Says:

@WTF

There’s a formula to knock Nadal out of Wimbledon early…..

1. First week match (before he’s had time to get used to the new surface)

2. Big, strong, flat-ball hitter who can strike aces and not give Rafa any rhythm

List of examples: Robert Kendrick, Soderling (2007 yes, 2010 not as much), Haase, Petzschner

IMO


grendel Says:

Well, Petzschner gave Federer a tough battle in Halle, and Haase I think beat Murray in Davis Cup; he looked to me a very sharp player, but then disappeared thru injury. Doesn’t it quite often happen that a top player struggles a bit sometimes in the first week before finding his feet? Certainly Borg used to.

There’s no doubt grass can be very different. Wilander, I think, won the AO when it was grass 3 times, and when asked how come he managed that yet couldn’t win Wimbledon, he replied – well, dammit, I’ve forgotten. But it was a rational reply, anyway, full of good sense…

DH – so you put it down to the 6 week break? But surely, Nadal can have a 4 or 5 week break now, can’t he? Is that so different? There’s something rum going on here.


skeezerweezer Says:

@Dan.

AMEN! I have been posting about this issue for months. It plays like a painted surface now, not the traditional grass that made it a “different surface”.

Borg? He was the best of the last that played from the slow FO to the speedy low bouncing Wimby and won! From the baseline no less. So it can be done. It’s a shame IMO.

Ok Rafa fans take it easy. Not taking away anything from Rafa’s great win, so don’t go there. We are talking surfaces here, NOT Rafa Nadal. Sensitivity check.

Out


DH Says:

@ grendel

They start back up in January but it’s like 2 tournaments:
one small warm up prior to the AO
then the Aussie Open…..

and then, for the most part, nothing until like, March?

so, there are breaks in there….

The end of the year seems like continuous tournaments from August to mid-November.

Of course, the players have the option of skipping (assuming it’s not a Masters series event)…but still….hardcourts are the Devil, I say…..;)


kimberly Says:

Is any channel replaying it. I saw the first few games, then drove home to miami from palm beach thinking would catch the end and missed it. So disappointed as I am a huge rafa fan, as is my five year old.

So Congrats to Rafa and hopefully many more to come. Is it for sure that delpo is out of USO? If so here are my winner picks with one being the most likely:

1. Rafa
2. Murray
3. Soderling
4. Fedex
5. Roddick
6. Berdych
7. Djoko
8. Davydenko
9. Cilic
10. Tsonga


Dan Martin Says:

Skeezer yeah not taking anything away from Rafa in 08 or 10 or Roger in 09, I just liked the days when there were massive differences on surfaces. It led to some odd results – Sampras followed a lot of ugly FO losses with Wimbledon crowns and Guga, Kafelnikov and a few others followed French titles with listless results on grass. Still, it gave the sport a little more texture than it has now.


jatt Says:

Hi Folks,

Amidst all this talk about rafa’s performance today and his career, the below article shares into something regarding the nadal’s training.
Just wanted to share with you something interesting:-

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703571704575340960041837420.html


ron Says:

@ SG, et. al.:

uh…rafa wins two slams in the last 6 weeks, but only wins 4 more in the next 5 years?

there are major credibility issues afloat here..i wonder why? not sour grapes in disguise, I am sure.ha!


DH Says:

Thanks jatt…..

a fascinating article. One that speaks to the commitment a professional athlete requires…

Wow. Such restrictions on their lifestyle….


Stefani Germanotta Says:

IF Federer can turn his game around — and that’s a big if because even his strongest supporters have to acknowledge that he is fading — but IF he can turn it around next year, then maybe his lackluster year this year (after the AO) helps him next year because he has fewer points to defend? Next year Rafa has to defend full points at FO and W. If Fed can re-emerge (use some new strings or something) then maybe he can have a good year.

Then again, he could also pull it together this fall, win USO and finish the year with two slams, which isn’t bad.


Pinkberry Says:

Good job Nadal…now can you lose the bikini underwear and either go w/out or try other types that will reduce your butt picking? I’d say go without…that way my mind can wonder :)


skeezerweezer Says:

@Pinkberry

Very funny but please stay away from that stuff. Now we are going to get a zillion posts by Rafa fans about how he is abused, misunderstood, and will be the GOAT on day… Pleeeasseeee give it a rest and let the Rafa fans have there day, they deserve it and earned it. They always be the “ugly” poster.

@ron,

Your postings are well known. Your “sour grapes” lies within. Look in the mirror. You had a ton of Fed fans giving Rafa credit and congrats today….give it up already.

Can you talk about and contribute? How about sharing your thoughts on how Rafa will get more GS titles and how? You might get more interaction by that, just sayin. On the other hand, maybe you don’t want too….Whatever

Bring it, it would be nice.


jojostruys Says:

“Now we are going to get a zillion posts by Rafa fans”

Talking about paranoia… lol!


Rick Says:

The sheriff is back in town! And he is back with a bang! Some statements must be made for his wins at Wimbledon.

NADAL is the new KING OF GRASS! Fed Allstop was actually being knocked off from number 1. Instead of falling back to number 1 like he did in 2009. Federer’s best years was in 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007. The players are not as good as today. His main rivals are mainly Hewitt and Roddick. And Safin occasionally, and in those days. Nadal was just a new comer and claycourt specialist who was learning to play on grass.

Sean Randal is making fools of himself to anyone or everyone to beat Nadal in his predictions. And it is his usual gags to had called anyone and everyone as Nadal’s nemesis.

And the most overated players on Tennis-X are

The players who had beaten Nadal last year. Especially Soderling and Davydenko. Well, I have my reserves for Del Porto. Man! He is good! He beat the craps out of Federer in his first ever Grand Slam final. He has got talents. But he hasn’t win anything since his US Open crown last year. Lets hope that, he would live up to expectation, when he makes his comeback to the tour.

Andy Roddick! He really didn’t play that well, except Wimbledon last year. But everyone on here think he has a chance for another Slam. Well, I do sympathy with his lost at Wimbledon last year. But there are many players on the tour who could beat him these days.

Roger Federer! I am pretty sure that, he knows that he won the French last year. There are alot of lucks being involved. He stole it, because the sheriff was not in town. Unlike his Wimbledon crown. He was actually being knocked off from the title. And now with Nadal’s win at Wimbledon. I am really wondering if Nadal played Wimbledon last year. If Federer would had won the title. Now that, the players that he owned are finding their ways to beat him. And I think Tony Roche could be a spy for the Aussies. Remember Roche said that he isn’t working with Roger. Because he wanted to be at home. But he is now coaching Hewitt. So that he could tells Hewitt how he could beats Federer? lol


Thomas Says:

I have this to say about Nadal. First of all,congrats to him and all of his fans for this latest victory. About his career: I doubt that he will be winning majors at 28/29,or even contending for number one or coming close. Why? Because his game is so tough on him physically. Not just bcoz of all the running he does,but also the amount of topspin he puts on the ball. When you do that,it puts an enormous amount of stress on the body. When we think of hard hitters we think soderling,del potro etc. But nadal probably swings at the ball harder than anyone else in the world. (You have to do that to put that much topspin on it) On top of that,Nadals concentration is more intense than anyone in the game. But how many years can he keep it up? Wilander talked about having a mental burnout,and its very possible it can happen to Nadal.


tenisbebe Says:

“Yup. That’s how I see it. 4, maybe 5 more slams on the outside. A healthy DelPo will be a threat to Rafa on every surface.” Well, we thought Soderling was a threat to Rafa but how quickly consensus changes.

DH says “When he plays enough tournaments, he should then drop Cincinnati….that is the worst hard court in the world for him IMO.” BITE YOUR FRIGGIN TONGUE! He should not drop Cincy, they need a week b/w Canada & Cincy, no back-to-back MS. Cincy is difficult for him because it is (a) notoriously hot and humid (2009 the exception), (b) fastest of the NA HC surfaces (c) back-to-back with Canada.

Regarding the questions as to ability to skip a Masters 1000 event without repercussions, players who has played 600 matches, played for 12 yrs or or 31 yrs of age may skip one of the eight mandatory masters.

To all Americans (United Statians :-)) HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY!!!


Rick Says:

Wilander is just a loser. He was found taking drugs doping later in his career. Nadal is a strong character unlike Mats. When Mats was falling off in his ranking. He never made his way back to number 1. But Nadal made it with a bang. True champion he is. I used to like Mats. But now I think that he is just full of shits! And he is also not a good commentator. Like Borg and Edberg. His patriotism got into his way of judgement. Mats was saying stuffs like Soderling being the new number 1 and stuffs like that. Just because they are Swedes!!!!


Thomas Says:

“The players are not as good as today”

Not really. With the exception of Nadal and maybe Del Potro,everyone in Nadals generation are mental headcases,and are far too inconsistent to be considered threats. (eg Murray,Djokovic,Cilic,Tsonga etc)And Safin and Nalbandian were far more talented than either murray,djokovic,delpot and cilic. (altho they had mind problems as well) And if the players back in Feds time were weak,why is it that Hewitt beat Delpo last yr at Wimbly,and Roddick beat Murray,or a 31 yr old Tommy Haas beat the 22 yr old Djokvic.(a member of the “better” generation)


Rick Says:

What would be Federer’s ranking comes out on Monday?


Rick Says:

Wilander only had a two-handed backband, and he hit slice with one back hand. He just doesn’t has the power that Nadal got. What worry me about Nadal’s future is if he would plays too much tournaments before the Grand Slams. And he got himself really tired or injury.

And another statement needed to be made. The Wimbledon officials are idiots. They had Federer seeded one in the tournaments. If Falla didn’t choke in the third set. Federer would had got taken out in the first round!


Rick Says:

I am pretty sure that, Federer is upset coming into this year’s Wimbledon. Otherwise, he would had beaten Hewitt in Halle. Because Nadal took all his claycourt titles and his number one ranking back. And what happened in Madrid, is just like what happened in Hamburg 2008. Federer won it the previous year. And the following year his title is being striped off by Nadal again!


margot Says:

“Shock Horror! Brits Win Wimbledon Trophy!” Yeah, yeah, I know they’re only 16, but you gotta take it while you can and as Sean was looking 10 years ahead…..none of present top ten will be there, so her’s wishing and hoping…
If Rafa stays uninjured he’s got lord knows how many slams left in him, to think otherwise is just silly.
Rumours that our Andy is getting a new coach, sure hope so!


Rick Says:

Also Federer won his US Open title against an aged Agassi. And again Federer beat an aged Sampras at Wimbedon. It is sure that, he has more Grand Slams than Nadal’s. And also other special issues needed to be taken into accounts. Players like Djokovic, Murray, Del Porto only made their names in 2008 and 2009. And now Tomas Berdych is a better than player than he was. So tennis is alot interestings these days than when Federer was dominating in 2004 to 2007.


Huh Says:

ALEISH:

CONGRATS ON RAFA’S WIN DEAR FRIEND! :P
SO SORRY THAT I GOT SO BUSY THAT I DID NOT HAVE ENOUGH TIME TO GET EVEN AS MUCH AS A HINT OF WHAT HAS HAPPENED UNTIL TODAY MORNING I FINALLY GOT MY EYES ON THE NEWSPAPER. :(

IT WAS GLORIOUS TO SEE THE NEXT BEST TENNIS THING OF THE NEW MILLENIUM AFTER FED, TO SEE HOLDING THE WIM TROPHY FOR THE SECOND TIME. TWO TIMES WIM CHAMPION MEANS MORE FAVE OF MINE THAN HE EVER WAS. THE MORE WIM ONE MEANS, THE MORE I START LIKING HIM. ;)
BY WINNING TWO WIMBYS AND 8 SLAMS, HE’S PERSONALLY, FOR ME AT LEAST, LEAPFROGGED AGASSI AND CONNORS. AND HAVE I TOLD YOU UNTIL NOW THAT ONE VOLLEY OF HIS VS MURRAY MADE ME PROUD OF HIM! :D
AFTER SEEING HIM HITTING THAT CLASSIC VOLLEY SHOT, RAFA SUDDENLY LOOKED TO ME, EVEN THOUGH FOR A MOMENT, AS IF HE’S ONE OF MY GREATEST EVER FAVES IN TENNIS, I MEAN LOOKED LIKE BORG!!! IT WAS A BEAUTY TO BEHOLD, SEEING RAFA PLAYING SUCH FEDERERESQUE TENNIS IN THIS WIMBLEDON. :D

WHAT A GREAT CHAMPION AND A LEGEND ALREADY RAFA IS!!!! :D

THIS IS COMING FROM ONE OF THE BIGGEST FED FAN HUH! :)

—————————-

CONGRATS AND MORE CONGRATS ALSO TO DEAR MINDY, ANNA AND EZORRA DEAR!
ALSO CONGRATS TO ONE OF THE MOST NICE RAFA FANS, JUGADORE DE TENNIS(WHERE ARE YOU, PLEASE COME.).

ALSO KUDOS TO ALL THE FED FANS LIKE SKEEZE, CONTY AND OTHERS FOR BEING SO GRACIOUS IN CONGRATULATING RAFA WITHOUT COMING ACROSS AS THE LEAST JEALOUS OR RUDE!


Rick Says:

Nadal’s back to back French and Wimbledon are more special than Federer’s. Because he did twice and both times with Federer being in the same tournaments. Unlike Federer’s.


Rick Says:

Is it true that, Djokovic would be number 2 on Monday?


Rick Says:

Since 2006, Nadal had learned to master on grass in 2008! So has Federer learned to master on clay yet? :P


tenisbebe Says:

Huh – May want to turn off your Cap Lock.


tennisfansince76 Says:

congrats Nadal. Nadal served great. his serve is hard to break on the wimbledon grass.
a few words. a few people said they were tired of Fed Nadal and wanted something different. well how bout today. we got something different. how did it match up to the electricity of 2006-2008. not very well. it was sort of yawn inducing. it was prosaic and mundane. it had none of the buzz that surrounded fed/nadal. so great congrats to Berdych but if you you are going to get to a GS final pls bring it.
after the buildup to and during wimb now is downtime. for me anyway. maybe the truly hardcore will b glued to the results at the newport beach grass court tourney ( ashame that tourney couldn’t be before Wimby. they still have old style grass there.) but i am taking a break until canada rolls around. can’t wait for the USO. as for predictions we’ll just have to wait and see what kind of form and health everyone is in. and of course the draw is important. but thats all a long way off.
I loved reading all the posts on here. maybe there could be a few less pissing contests based on particular player loyalties.
some have said Rafa has improved. it doesn’t really look like it to me. he just looks like he regained his form of 2008/early 2009. its all about his timing and confidence. when its not there his topspin falls short leaving alot of midcourt balls for good opponents to feast on. when its on his mighty FH hits like an abomb just inside the baseline.
one poster asked how we federer fans like seeing Nadal hoisting the Wimby trophy and holding the #1 ranking. well, I don’t like it one bit. buts thats life.


Rick Says:

Ever since 2006, Sean Randall had learned that he made himself looking like a fool for writing Rafa off in most his match perdictions. Now that, he learns that to stop looking like an idiot, it is better for him to kiss and make up with Nadal. lol


tenisbebe Says:

Personally, I found it interesting to read the debate here regarding whether Rafa has altered his game in the past 2 years or so. To me, a passionate tennis player and observer, the answer is obvious: YES. I am incredibly impressed with this kid: he made changes (not tweeks) to him clay court game to contend & eventually win Wimby in 2008. And then after a stellar 4 month beginning in 2009 followed by a disappointing 8 mos (although getting to the QF in Montreal & the SF in Cincy was admirable, remember the YEC??), he changes huge components of his game: the serve, return (in later stages of IW and Miami he “ran home to mama” and stood too far back from the BL), backhand (slice), mindset (offensive). How many players on tour of his age or older having had the kind of success he has would or have changed their game so drastically? No one I can think of has dared change a winning formula even if prevailing sense says they must: having homed their strokes and strategy from age 15, most pros are reluctant to change (ie: Federer). BUT HE DID – and it meant the difference b/w having your body break down yet again and winning more majors. Although I have said on this site for quite some time that the USO will be his most difficult challenge (for a number a reasons previously stated) I truly believe that this guy, this player has the will and the commitment to make the necessary changes in his game once again in order to succeed at the USO – he is truly setting new standards for the game we adore. VAMOS RAFA!


gabsvamos Says:

Rafael Nadal is an amazing tennis player and we should all be so thrilled that we get to see him play this magnificent game. Like Federer, Nadal was made to play and it’s a honour that we, this generation, are able to see not only his development and dominance but also the evolution of the game. I believe that he will win at least 8 more slams in his career and continue to make records that seem unbeatable. He deserved this title because he worked so hard for it and his mental strength will only continue to grow as he gets older, he will always fight for it which is a rare quality in anyone and especially fortuitous in a sportsman. Congratulation Rafa and VAMOS for the USO!

And just to answer someone’s question, Federer is now ranked 3rd, Nole 2nd.


bobby Says:

TO PEOPLE WHO ARE TALKING ABOUT SLOWNESS OF WIMB SURFACE :.If the wimb surface was so slow then Isner-Mahut longest match would never have happened.On so called slow surface,Isner served 112 aces and Mahut served 103 aces.Can you believe that it was in one match such numbers occured.If that is tennis then it should only be composed of service only.Then recruit NBA 7 feet tall players and teach them to serve and we will have great ace festival and tell that this is tennis.You will know then ,the popularity of tennis which is high around the world will go up even more or not.I think that tennis lovers should be satisfied with the present status of tennis especially in the present economic situation.Even if the courts are slow,which i think is not,present rackets enable players to hit the ball faster and harder than 15 or 20 years back. If you check serve speeds,it was only in 1997 that serve speeds started going up above 140 mph.So even if the wimbledon courts are so called“slow”,rackets nullify the final effect.But some people conveniently forget about newer rackets when talking about court speeds.Maybe it is selective memory.


Purcell Says:

Rick:
Is this not supposed to be a Nadal congratulatory thread? Correct me if I’m wrong. Why bring your dislike of Fed into not one but multiple posts? If you’re the sort of fan that supports Nadal, then he can’t be a very pleasant person, because you certainly aren’t. Calm down and give BOTH players the respect they deserve.


Dan Martin Says:

Bobby,

One of the main reasons the court has played slower recently is the dry weather – something I mentioned. Grass in week 1 plays differently than week 2 if it never rains. Nadal’s issues with Hasse and P.Pet. would likely not have been as great if the matches were played during week 2. Weather is something All England cannot control. However, the mix of grasses, the number of times they roll the courts during the year etc. they can control and since 1998 they have steadily slowed the event down. With Murray being a great return man and defensive player I suspect it will stay slower than it was. People who played on the pro-tour in the 1990′s and 1980′s such as Goran and Mac have repeatedly said you can’t imagine how slow the courts play these days when they hit on Wimbledon’s courts today. They have slowed the courts down. That is a matter of record. My taste of wanting faster grass courts is subjective. You might disagree, but the courts are slower, and the bounces are more predictable today than they were 10-15 years ago.


Sherri Says:

Congratualtions to Rafa on a wonderful win, not the most exciting final, however very satisfying to all Nadal fans. What a scintillating two weeks, so many records tumbled, so many exciting & incident filled matches, so many seeded players falling by the wayside. Yep, totally satisfying.
Then of course there’s this forum, so many conflicting view points, disagreements, insults (humorous & otherwise)found myself laughing out loud at some of the postings and outrage at some of blatant racist remarks. How the regulars on this forum will absolutely come out with guns blazing at the merest implication that the Maestro may or may not hve been insulted and yet will say nothing ’bout the racist comments made by peeps like “Rafa is Weak”. Contador takes exception to having Fed put down by “Fed is afraid” & yet the comments made about Indians/India doesn’t even merit censure, go figure!!! “Its all abt da game” who confirmed that he was from India & Dari (I think) who actually had the balls to say something. Racism is something that needs to be eradicated, why are these Bozo’s remarks not being deleted or is there no moderation on this site at all. The world cup is being played at the moment with the slogan “Say no to Racism” or something to that effect and forums like these should stamp it out. I find that it’s mostly peeps hailing from “First World” countries (I am from OZ & we have come a long way in levelling out the playing field)who indulge in this type of disgraceful behaviour. Now I know you have no control over this type of mindset but once in awhile, please dont allow these bigoted morons access to this platform. Be more vocal about these real insults rather than taking exception to something said about your favourite tennis players who really dont know that we exist, Racism exists, take a stand!!!


Eskay Says:

IMO good play can not be attributed to the court condition alone. It was being said that Rafa can not win on grass, he is only a clay wonder. When he won wimbledon, it was said that the court was playing similar to clay these days. And then he won A.O. That silenced the critics and he was accepted as a great player. May be the surface does give a slight advantage to a particular style of play, but then there are mental things too which can overcome the handicap, if there were any. What is seen in Rafa’s game, he stood well nearer the base line and played aggressively. He did commit more unforced errors on account of that since it was not possible to change the instinctive swing and force on the ball and the same ball that would have landed in from well behind the baseline, went out. Also he has been serving more number of aces and serve is faster by ten -fifteen percent.These things are bound to stand him in good stead on the fast hard courts too. If he were to win the U.S.O, all criticism of surface coming into picture will subside. Remember, Borg was not only doing double at French Open and Wimbledon, but also reaching the finals of U.S.O. He had to contend with double force then, for if he overcame Connors, Johny Mac was there and vice versa. He was a good player on any surface, not only for his game but for the mental strength too. It appears the excuse of surface treads on rather thin ice. Rafa is going to nail it with his improved game in a year or two.


Rafa is weak Says:

Sherri – you are from Oz? who are you fooling? you are another loser rafa fan from india. You should be ashamed you do not even have the guts to admit you are one.

please spare us this talk on morality. indians are the biggest racists in the world. try and change that before you write columns on a racism free world.

are you arguing that indians are hypocrites? or that sania married a pakistani? or that indians drink cow urine? those are facts.


Mg Mg Says:

Q. Is the court faster? That seemed like a match 20 years ago.

ANDY RODDICK: It’s going to be weather‑dependent. You know, when it’s colder out, it slows up a bunch. When it’s really warm ‑‑ it was really warm last year almost the whole tournament, and it was pretty quick.

I’d put more stock into the weather as opposed to the actual court.


Rafa is weak Says:

Rafa is a clay-court specialist who took advantage of the decline of grass court / hard court champs like federer, hewitt, roddick and safin. look at the mental toughness of murray, djokovic, tsonga, berdych, cilic. they seem like midgets compared even to safin, who was not the brightest of them all.

that said, i am sure those guys will soon find their feet and put rafa in his place. the fastest of surfaces today are at USopen and the Masters cup and rafa has advanced no more than semis at both those places. if you are debating the fact that wimbledon has been slowed down – something the officials themselves have acknowledged, you are just being an idiot.


Sherri Says:

Rafa is weak I can only guess where u from and it has nothing to do with the country of your birth m8. You have a problem, get over it or seek help a lobotomy should help with your affliction. Generalizations do not help your cause at all. Yes I am a Rafa Fan, proud of it, Why should I admit to being from India …..??? If I were, I would be pleased to admit to it, absolutely nothing wrong with being Indian, they have rich culture & heritage, what do you have?


Sherri Says:

Eskay agree with you 100% When Rafa wins USO guess who is gonna have cow urine even cow faeces all over his face, seems to have a fetish or fixation about cow urine, LOL.


contador Says:

What?

i have no idea what this racist and anti- India thing is about, and imo it’s inappropriate on a tennis forum. i don’t make political speeches on this forum or actually any, for that matter. i have simply been ignoring it, hoping it will go away.

why bring my name into this, anyway. i don’t put nadal down. he deserves his #1 and legion of fans celebrating.

try as i may, i can’t bring myself to be a rafa fan. maybe that will change. it’s nearly impossible to get around watching him, as many of my favorites will simply have to. that i would prefer his style to lose is my own problem.

this is obviously rafa’s time. vamos rafa. i certainly have nothing against spain or the spanish. my nik should tell you that, if you know who “contador” is. he’ my fave spaniard.

i only commented on those who say federer’s mono was nothing, which is as ridiculous as saying rafa has no knee problems.

and imo, neither illness nor injury detract from someone winning and capitalizing on the abscence or underperformance of the ill or injured when they decide to enter a tournament.

no whinning.

“fed is afraid” is an absurd nickname in light of what federer actually has done. no one, if they were ” afraid,” intimidated or the like could do what fed has.

“fed is afraid” as a poster has a right to his/her opinion and his/ her posts are quite amusing. fed is afraid makes me giggle. very poetic poster, imo.

moving on……

the other absurd thing


Eskay Says:

Rafa appears to be determined to win U.S.O. He is slightly flattening his shots. There are some subtle changes in his game, some of which are seen even while watching his game on screen. Roger is not changing his game, since it is a winning game on most of the days, irrespective of the surface or opponent. Or may be he has no coach, or whatever reason he knows best. Growth is the indicator of life, its absence indicates that the end is nearer. Rafa will win U.S.O before laying down racquet and Roger will take his tally of G.S beyond reach before laying down his racquet.


contador Says:

oops

i was going to go into the other “absurd thing” but someone already mentioned how this thread and another reads like a grade school “peeing contest” between fedal “mine is bigger than yours” boasters.

i’ll wait for some tennis starts to make some picks.

oh wait , there is a tournament going on in newport. and a davis cup, right?

and hc season right around the corner. plus if you actually read my posts sherri, you would know i am “picking” rafa and his team to strategize differently this summer and have rafa peaking for the us open.

and you would also know i have no expectations from federer.

however that does not prevent my hope for nole , muzza, soda, gulbis, berdych, davy and a mystery man to make the masters season and us open more competitive for tennis than the last two slam finals.

rafa needs some competition, imo. not sure who that will be atm.


Rafa is weak Says:

Ok! you are not an indian. I believe you. lol! most indians are not so proud about their country anyway. they are busy running away to other countries and begging them to adopt them. you must have been one of those losers who Australia took pity on.

Rafa winning US open? rafa fans better keep praying djokovic and murray do not find their game for that slam too. how many slams has rafa won outside clay when he had to go through djokovic or murray?

Zero = nada = nothing.


Sherri Says:

Contador, you know I would love Muzza to win a GS, now here’s the rub, it would of course have to come at the expense of my fav player, Rafa. I felt so badly for him when he lost to Rafa in the semi & almost & I re-iterate almost wished that it had been him who had made the most of those 6 or so shots that turned the game. I guess the affinity I feel with Muzza stems from my grandmother who is Scottish, maiden surname Murray, lol.


andrea Says:

well, both men’s and women’s matches were anticlimactic. credit to vera for playing some gritty first few games but she wasn’t making any inroads into serena’s serve and the writing was on the wall.

but congrats to serena – her serve was incredible.

also congrats nadal. i don’t know how many times we have watched him rush to get a ball going wide on the ad side, thinking ‘no way can he get it’ only to have him rip a forehand up the line.

i guess the players have to get used to that cos so often they don’t defend that shot…

oh well. bit of a break now until the next one.

bring on the hardcourts.


Sherri Says:

Rafa is weak, don’t let me hold you up, take your white bed sheet & go to your KKK meeting, your cronies are eagerly awaiting your vitriolic inane ravings. While you at it, perhaps burning a few crosses will rid you of the deep and terrible disapointment you are feeling right now that Rafa has won Wimbledon, may even alleviate the deep rooted angst plaguing you that maybe, just maybe Rafa will win the USO. In yer face m8!!


Joe W Says:

The preceding comments re: Rafa’s mechanical and tactical improvements are spot on. What have been overlooked are his concentration, gamesmanship and mental toughness. This is what sets him apart from the rest of the field right now – including Federer – and therein lies the margin of victory over formidable opponents such as Murray and Soderling. Is Rafa the most gifted tennis player with the best forehand, serve, and backhand on tour? No. Is he the mentally toughest player on tour? Absolutely. Mental toughness is many things and rather difficult to explain. McEnroe, Carrillo, and other personalities throw the term around quite often. Its qualities are sacrifice and self-denial. Combine this with a perfectly disciplined will that refuses to give in and you have the essence of a great player, or a great leader for that matter. It’s a state of mind you could call character. If he weren’t a tennis player, it’s not hard to imagine Rafa being the Captain of Spain’s national football team. This quality is also hard to maintain year-over-year which make Federer’s accomplishments all the more amazing. Roger has been a pro athlete since 1998 and never sustained a serious injury and if I’m not mistaken has asked for the trainer once. Think about that. Off the top of your head can you name another internationally renowned athlete who has competed at the very top of his or her sport and can claim this? Tiger, Lance Armstrong, Muhammad Ali, Michael Jordan, Steffi Graf? No.

I am a Federer freak and if you visit my Facebook site Roger is listed as one of my top five favorite athletes of all time (along with three NFL Washington Redskins, the best game in the world that also happens to be called football). Rafa is not. Roger is physically flat and mentally stale right now. Rafa is full of confidence. Confidence is contagious and so is a lack of confidence and an opponent will sense both. I too share the opinion that Roger will never regain the level of play from 2004-2007. His back problems are likely legitimate which do not mix well with tennis. Just ask Pete, Andre or Steffi. This affliction was a contributor to ending their careers (and my hacking around on the tennis court too). But the ability to maintain that mental toughness and concentration and the will to defeat the person across the net had subsided too. At some point fate will catch Federer too. Hopefully that is a few years off.
Right now Rafa is the legitmate No. 1. Along with Laver, Pete, and Roger, Rafa is also arguably one of the best ambassadors in the history of men’s tennis and a great successor to Roger. Along with the aforementioned qualities, add sportsmanship and humility. Connors, McEnroe, Lendl, Andre, or how about Djoker or Murray? I wouldn’t assign these qualities to any of them. Don’t worry about the future tennis fans, it’s already tomorrow in Australia.


Eskay Says:

All the three G.S finals were rather disappointing this year. One had become used to the U.S.O, Wimby, A.O of 2009, but there were high expectations with little thrill in 2010. Just as Rafa-Andy match was more worthy of finals, so also Rafa-Roger match at U.S.O before finals is likely to dampen the enthusiasm, if Roger does not improve to number two in rankings.


Sherri Says:

After winning the French Open I believe Rafa said something to one of the American commentators/journo’s (I think) about seeing him/them at the USO. Even then I believe the strategy was evolving just as his game is evolving. A lot has been said about how he has changed the way he was playing, shortening points, not chasing every single ball etc, so yes, I believe with or without Del Potro, he is the man to beat.


ron Says:

@Joe W:

Thank you for a rare moment of insight and analysis amongst the sub-par blather predominant here. Very well written and thought provoking.


Sherri Says:

Joe W, agree with you, makes sense and perhaps you can add Usain Bolt to your list. You right, it is tomorrow here in OZ and way past my bed time, so good night & sweet dreams all. (Except “Nadal is weak” – hope you have horrific nightmares)


Dan Martin Says:

To clarify, (I was vague about this sorry) Rafa is a great player and I do not attribute his titles to a slower grass court. Courier reached the Wimbledon final in 1993 on faster grass courts and Rafa is much more talented than Courier IMHO so no reason Rafa could not compete on any speed court. His net game has improved in part due to playing doubles at smaller events and events not too close to slams (something more top guys should do!). Rafa is quick and strong. He competes well and moves incredibly well. Connors and Borg competed and moved well and combined for 9 grass court slam titles when grass was faster.

I think after the 1998 ace fest of Goran vs. Krajicek in the semis and Pete vs. Goran in the finals, All England started to try to slow things down. They thought the tennis was too dull. The courts have gradually gotten slower. Look at how Federer played on grass against Pete in 2001 and against Mark P. in 2003 and look at how he played in 2006-2010. A player with the same talent and skill set adapting to a different court speed is how I would describe Roger’s more baseline oriented approach to grass. Roger probably benefited from slower grass as he had time to hit ground strokes, time to construct points and lots of chances to get many serves back into play. Roddick in 03, 04 and 05 had his serve under pressure from Roger in a manner that may not have been possible on Wimbledon’s court speed in 1995.

As a fan, I think having distinct speeds and bounces at the slams makes the events more fun to watch. These events can be a little different than the week in and week out events in what the court asks a player to do. The Triple Crown races are all different, many baseball stadiums are different, etc. I think the court being a bigger part of the equation is fun as a fan. Still, Federer and Nadal’s success on grass and Nadal and Federer’s success on clay is much more of a product of their overwhelming talent and drive than of court speeds being more uniform. If Borg could win on fast grass and Nadal has his foot speed and volleys I think he could also deal with bad bounces better than the vast majority of the tour as foot speed and good hands can offer the time needed to adapt to bad bounces. I just have nostalgia for chewed up courts around the net and bad bounces.


Andrew Miller Says:

On Nadal’s Knees, From ESPN: “Nadal felt some twinges in his knee during his third-round match against Philipp Petzschner but reported no issues the rest of the way.

“With the new treatment, the left knee works perfect,” he said. “So when I [go in] to do that to the right, hopefully that’s going to be the same.”

Spanish papers have reported that the procedure appears to be platelet-rich therapy (PRT), in which the person’s own blood is taken and spun in a machine and the concentrated blood is then injected back into the injured area. Nadal has not discussed it directly but said that it was a “painful treatment” that is “applied directly to the tendon.” This is an important detail because that is a part of the body where PRT is permissible under anti-doping rules.

James Blake underwent the same therapy for his injured knee earlier this year, although WTA player Tamira Paszek was briefly investigated for undergoing a variation of the procedure on her back last year.”

Maybe he goes far in NY if he serves well – one two combinations and return-service winners. In the past, Sampras/Federer did well based on winners, not chasing balls all over the place (results prove as much).

Rafa needs “cheap points” – serve winners, serve-return winners – to win the US Open. Helps the knees, shortens the matches.


Skeezerweezer Says:

Rick Says:
Since 2006, Nadal had learned to master on grass in 2008! So has Federer learned to master on clay yet? :P

Uh, yeah. Fed won FO in 2009. Everyone knows the second best player on Clay. How many times as he been in the finals and semis at FO? I think that answers your question :P


sheila Says:

rick totally disqualified federers accomplishments by saying that his competition was never that great. essentially thats what he was saying. youre a real tool rick. to win 16 majors & play a variety of different tennis players to get to hold the trophy up, imo, is quite an accomplishment. to win 8 majors as nadal has done is quite an accomplishment. for roddick to have stayed in the top 10 for what 7 yrs is quite an accomplishment. the consistency is what, imho, makes these guys special. lots of players have come & gone from the top 10 in the blink of an eye, but to maintain a top 10 ranking for years, imo, is a great accomplishment and for someone to diminish that accomplishment by saying competition wasnt strong has no respect for the game of tennis


Andrew Miller Says:

If Federer’s competition was “not great” neither was Nadal’s, even if his competition was Federer, the best of all time.

Every generation has its players…I’d say the reason players like Haas, who normally would have gotten a title, or Safin, who certainly should have had one of two more slams, or even Roddick, who’s probably the best one-slam player out there, dont have more is because of two men:

Federer and Nadal, in that order.

Really, before Nadal the French Open was won by a colorful cast of characters: Ferrero, Costa, Gaudio etc., with only one showing the grit to win a few: Gustavo Kuerten (Guga) who was a solid competitor off the clay also.

From 1997 up until the Nadal era, the French Open was won by Kuerten, Moya, Agassi, Ferrero, Costa and Gaudio. Since Gaudio, it’s been Nadal and Federer, with Nadal owning all but one year, 2009.

This shows how impressive Nadal and Federer are. THe issue is not the competition.

It’s that we as spectators are spoiled rotten. Not only to see two champions, but also to see how good their competition is – it’s extraordinary, so much so that players feel accomplished to get to finals and feel as if if it werent for Nadal and Federer…they’d be holding a crown.

Only one player has broken through:Del Potro. Djokovic should also go for another slam.

FIX THAT SERVE DJOKOVIC!!!!


SG Says:

I for one liked the S&V era at Wimbledon. On all the other surfaces, players could (and still can) stay back to their hearts content. Grass made things more interesting. It played into the strengths of some and forced others to expand their games (Lendl, Borg Connors etc.). I find it unfortunate that Wimbledon has lost its uniqueness in terms of style of play. Serve and volley tennis has a brand of shotmaking all its own. Just because the points don’t last as long doesn’t mean the points aren’t entertaining.


contador Says:

yes, enjoyed the post, Joe W.

must add: “gamesmanship” is under-rated and one can’t count out that ability to execute strategies, adapt if necessary and remain focused on a big stage. on court coaching is useless if the subject ‘loses it.’ ( dinara safina )

appears murray, berdych and soderling have mentally mastered the GS semi but not the final. c’mon!

ron-

still anticipating and awaiting paragraphs of rare inspiring tennis insight and analysis from you.

a one or two sentence vague put-down is not enough to stop the blathering. i fear you will get ignored and your potential tennis contributions lost.

so post away and reveal yourself, raise the bar here. no time like the present to put an end to mindless blathering.


SG Says:

As for Nadal’s competition, he beat “The Man” to be “The Man” and he’s done it on a fairly regular basis. That means a lot when he’s beating Roger Federer almost every time it really matters. And he beats him on all surfaces. Not lucky. Just good. If Fed had Nadal’s insides, he’d have 25 majors by now. If Nadal has Fed’s game, he’d probably have 15 majors already. Fortunately, nature always balances things out.


fed is afraid Says:

why is one “person” allowed to post racist and
derogatory statements about a country. they have no place here on anywhere else. person should be banned.


Andrew Miller Says:

Yep, fans are spoiled rotten. However, I do wonder how many competitors are dispirited by thinking through what it takes to win a slam. Even for those who train extraordinarily hard, like Murray, there’s no guarantee.

Maybe that’s why Baghdatis et. may never break through. The talent is there, the discipline is not.


Andrew Miller Says:

Maybe Andy Roddick is a victim of slow court speed.


Joe W Says:

Dan, AE’s heavier Slazenger balls don’t compliment the slow turf either (Wimbledon is now the only tourney where these balls are used – Halle and Queens don’t use them anymore).

Couldn’t agree more about the court diversity at the four majors. The DecoTurf surface at the US Open is a faster surface than the AO
s Plexicushion – in fact both surfaces are made by the same American company – and make for a rather simliar comparison to RG’s clay and AE’s grass. Like Decoturf vs Plexicushion, the grass has slightly less friction and produces a lower bounce than clay. In theory the faster surfaces should promote more serve-n-volley, and to a degree they do, but All England – like the other surfaces – is much more of a baseline affair than in late 90s. If AE had left the grass alone, Federer would have employed more S-N-V,as would other players so perhaps we both miss this aspect of Wimby too. We’d have the potential for more Fed vs Sampras-like matches.


Joe W Says:

Contador – totally agree. Nadal’s gamemanship has really improved and I would say is level with Federer’s. An important component indeed and another contributing factor to the wide margin between Fed/Nadal and the rest of the pack. What’s the old saw about a man making his own luck? Its no accident that these two incredible tennis players have collectively dominated the sport for the past 7 years. Its really hard to not see them doing this for another 3-4 years, even with Roger’s inevitable decline. collectively 10 years


Joe W Says:

SG – all nature wears one universal grin.


Rafa is weak Says:

funny to see fake-all fans crying teacher when they get bullied around. much like nadal crying toni or knees when getting bullied around by the big boys.

so this pathetic excuse of a life gets reminded of morals and ethics and moderation when she is getting bullied?


SG Says:

Joe W Says:
SG – all nature wears one universal grin.

——

So true. Even Tiger Woods has a weakness…


contador Says:

Joe W=

i don’t know if we are talking about the same thing in reference to gamesmanship. maybe we are. not sure.

i think of gamesmanship as everything from locker room and on-court mannerisms and psychology ( rafa sprinting and jumping ) to a court presence of mind, knowing when to slow the match down or speed up, time to call an mto, challenge a call, complain to ump, give the opponent applause, use the crowd…( i think i could go on all day)….including what is said to the press pre and post match…

knowing the guy on the other side of the net? really important for gamesmanship.

federer definitely used the press prior to the AO final to his advantage. good or bad: gamesmanship? take your pick. it’s effective.

yes, federer and nadal are masters of tennis gamesmanship. i have no idea if it’s something that comes naturally or what. maybe it’s no different than my own career. a lot can’t be taught, some of it can. it’s definitely a matter of matching skill and aptitude. it’s very much about reading people in the moment.

will apply in my next life for the talent and tennis aptitude. get in line, i know…

it’s hard to see nadal not dominating the rest of this year in his present form and i mean on every level.

his knees are his worst foe. team rafa has done a great job so far this season.

i don’t see him dominating in consecutive years like federer did, but what do i know.

even if rafa can’t dominate in consecutive years, he still has time to catch federer in GS’s. in fact, i wouldn’t be surprised if it’s part of the long-term plan and creating his own luck, i don’t know the “old saw” but i believe luck is created, definitely.

part of the plan likely includes lots of injury management and patience for team rafa.

if rafa tweaks something he won’t push it anymore is what i would guess. he’ll rest it and miss what he has to, to keep playing tennis a long time.

lesson learned in 2009.

for federer? i have no idea. he really has done enough in “my book.” i love his tennis. i am adjusting to him playing because he loves tennis but losing. i have nothing else to say other than i miss the ponytail years.

i keep looking for the next champion as special as roger….and have to admit, rafa. we are spoiled tennis fans.


Huh Says:

Can’t agree more about the slowing down of WIM surface with Dan. Everyone starting from Ivanisevic to Rafter to Becker have indeed lamented and expressed their surprise about the slowness of WIM surface.

I also agree with SG that the beautiful and unique S&V game of wim is missed.

Last but not the least, the competition of Fed consisting of Rod, Safin, Hewitt, Guga, Moya, Nalby, Agassi, Ferrero, even Haas etc. is much better then the competition of Nadal consisting of Murray, Djoko, Tsonga, Gulbis, Sod, Berdych, Cilic etc. DP is common competition to both so far. So, to be really honest, whether Nadal has beaten Fed is altogether a diffrent thing which doesn’t matter when comparing the overall competition Fed/Rafa faced.

So at the end of the day:
Fed’s competition during his prime >> Rafa’s competition in his prime. (It won’t change unless the contrary is proved)


Huh Says:

And so far as Rafa winning slams is concerned, I think he’d win 10-12 slams. I can’t say though as to whether he can surpass Fed in slam count. But what I feel like FREAKING happening is Rafa winning this year’s USO, next year’s AO and FO both, in a row! I seriously hope that I’m here wrong as I certainly don’t want Rafa to do more incredible things than even by Fed’s standard by winning! Even Fed’s not been able to win all 4 slams in a row within a year, but Rafa’s the chance IMO of winning 5 slams in a row from FO 10-FO 11. None except a rejuvenated Fed can stop him from doing that. Hope that if Muzza’s not gonna win the US 10, at least Fed/Rod/Nole/someone other than Rafa win it. All this not coz I’m Rafa hater but coz I really really want Fed’s record to stay more amazing overall than Rafa.
Heart says someone other than Rafa should win, but mind says: just give the US 10 trophy to Rafa now that all of his threats have seemingly vanished!


SG Says:

Somewhere above I said that “Nature deplores a vacuum” when it’s “Nature abhorrs a vacuum”. Damn rusty cliches.

I’d say Rafa’s body will wreak havoc on his career. I don’t seem him being a major threat after the age of 26. In otherwords, he’s got the next 10 or 11 slams or so to do his damage. After that, he’ll be toast. I say he wins 4 or 5, then he’s done.


SG Says:

Rafa’s gonna take a 6 week lay off now. Actions speak louder than words.


Joe W Says:

Contador – we do share the definition of the term “gamesmanship” for all of the examples you provided. No offense to Dan or Sean but if I could see into the future I wouldn’t be blogging on Tennix X. Rather I would own Armstrong stadium or a 1000 series tournament and be hanging out with Fed and Mirka’s euro babe friends.

The law of averages affirms that in the long run probabilities will determine performance. All things considered, Fed and Nadal have collectively won 3 of the four GS this year and a host of Master series tournametns (with Nadal doing the heavy lifting). Even with the injuries and earlier exits than expecetd as of late, I’m going over on my prediction that the two of these guys will dominate the sport for at least another three years, again with Nadal doing the heavy lifting. From a statistical point of view, lumping Fed and Nadal together is an example of force multiplication.


mem Says:

Sherrie, don’t waster your valuable time responding to RafaIsWeak. he has nothing of substance to speak about. we have heard the same for years.

rafafans should once and for all realize that in the eyes and minds of some people, a negative spin will always be attributed to rafa’s wins to invalidate or diminish the achievement.

there will always be lame excuses:
e.g. if the surface is playing faster and he wins, the argument becomes what if the surface was slower; if it’s a sunny day when he wins, the argument becomes, what if it had been raining, bla, bla, bla. if he progresses to the next round in five sets, the argument becomes what if he hadnt taken a medical time out or was illegally coached; if he beats soderling, murray, berdych to win; the argument becomes what if he had played roger or djokovic. if he wins in straights sets, the argument becomes, what if his opponent serve had been working; if he beats all in his paths; the argument becomes what if he had to play del potro or davydenko. after he wins the tournment, argument becomes whether or not he will defend it a year from now. if he adds to his slams count, the argument becomes what if his knees give out and on and on and on.

rafafans should enjoy rafa’s wins, be happy for him after all he has been through, continue to support him, stay away from fruitless arguments, and move on to the next tournament.

because there is nothing nadal will ever do in the eyes of some of these people that will give merit to his well-deserved achievements, not ever; get use to it! it’s no big deal; this normal for people who live their lives looking for excuses.

anyway, i suggest that rafafans not invest energy into trying to prove otherwise. again, congratulate rafa and move on. allow his critics to say whatever makes them feel better; rafa’s record speak for itself and no one but God knows what the future holds! in due time, we will see what will happen next!


Andrew Miller Says:

Kind of hard to believe that today’s competition is worse than in the past! EVERY player emerges as one set of players declines and another rises!!

The biggest difference today – the strings and surfaces. Players in the past dealt with these changes also (US Open went from grass to clay to harcourts; AUSSIE Open went from grass to hardcourt or Rebound Ace – which suited Agassi so much he claimed four AO titles.)

The only thing missing today is that the most talented players – the Baghdatis’ of the world and Murray and Djokovic of the world are not improving enough. Nadal gets better every year.

The big fellas however ARE IMPROVING every year. The Tsongas, Del Potros, Berydchs, Cilics, etc. They are getting better and better. I would not be shocked (and I would have been last year or any year from 2006 to the present) to see one of the big guys come back and win some slams, especially as Federer is not playing well and Nadal’s knees are always a concern.


Dan Martin Says:

Huh, I think Rafa could indeed do this. The Rafa Slam is possible. I will think more about it if and when he wins the USO in Sept., but he should be favored at the next 3 or 4 slams.


tenisbebe Says:

Huh says: “Last but not the least, the competition of Fed consisting of Rod, Safin, Hewitt, Guga, Moya, Nalby, Agassi, Ferrero, even Haas etc. is much better then the competition of Nadal consisting of Murray, Djoko, Tsonga, Gulbis, Sod, Berdych, Cilic etc. DP is common competition to both so far. So, to be really honest, whether Nadal has beaten Fed is altogether a diffrent thing which doesn’t matter when comparing the overall competition Fed/Rafa faced.”

This has to be the most blatantly biased statement from a confirmed Fedaholic I have seen. Roddick or Rod as you chose to call him has been playing steadily since 2005 when Rafa broke thru, better arguably in the past 2 years than in his early 20′s. Safin??? Talented but inconsistent. Hewitt?? A one-trick pony – movement. Guga? Please – ONLY at the FO and he was not a factor after 2001/2002. Moya? God knows I love Carlos but you are truly smoking dope with that one. Nalbandian has given them BOTH headaches but again he’s inconsistent. Andre? After he won the FO in 1999, he was definitely on the downside of his career, a fighter yes but his shots lost there effectiveness. Ferrero? How did JC even make your list? Tommy can be a gritty opponent but never could get any traction in his career. What’s going on with Tommy anyway. I’m not going to go through your Rafa list one-by-one but suffice it to say that past pros & tennis gurus alike have christened Murray (and Djoko)one of the most talented players to come up in a very long time. I put more stock in then than some sour grapes poster. Your green tinge is showing with this post Huh.

See you found the Cap Lock button :-)


Dan Martin Says:

From 2005 forward when Rafa entered the top 5 and eventually became #2 they have basically shared the same competition. Federer has some adversaries from 2001-2004 who are relevant and Rafa will have some adversaries post 2012/when Federer hangs it up that won’t be shared. Otherwise the competition is the same for both guys. I do wish there were a second clay court monster kind of like how Sham pushed Secretariat in horse racing, but Rafa can’t be blamed for that.


tenisbebe Says:

Well said mem!


Huh Says:

TENISBEBE:

OOPS, I KNOW YOU’RE ONE OVERSENSITIVE “TARD” WHOSE LIFE BEGINS AND ENDS WITH DREAMS OF CLEANING RAFA’S SHOES. I SEE THAT YOUR ROSE-COLOURED GLASSES ARE FINE AS ALWAYS. :D
COOL DOWN BABY, YOU WILL FEEL BETTER!
PRAYED TO RAFA TODAY OR NOT? TAKE CARE. ;)


SG Says:

Fed fans enjioyed their guy’s run. Now, it’s Rafa’s fans turn to bask. You have to appreciate things when they’re in front of you. I loved watching Connors and Sampras, Mac too. Totally different guys, each with their own brand of magic. Now that their gone (some more gone than others), you recognize how great these guys were. The same thing will happen with Rafa and Fed. In 10 years they’ll be gone. Might as well stop and smell the roses. Two great players like this at the same time, going to toe to toe. It’s something really special. May not happen again for 25 or 30 years. Sampras – Agassi was a good rivalry. Nadal – Fed is a great one. With the exception of one FO final, these two battle epically.


andrea Says:

the cycle is starting all over again….only now it’s with nadal!

when fed was dominating, the competition was weak. now that he’s losing, the competition has ‘caught up’.

now that nadal is dominating, the rest of the field is weak…

let’s make a guess and say that in 3 years, when nadal’s not winning everything, the competition will have caught up?

just a guess….


Huh Says:

AS IT GOES IN THE WORLD OF THE “OBJECTIVE TARD” TENNISBEBE…

Oh, how great! :/
I can’t even count with one hand how many times Fed has been handed his @$$ in the slams by the graciously talented ones like Djoko and Murray. ;)
There’s a reason after all as to why these guys have won one slam between them! ;)

Stupid “one-trick pony”s like Hewitt, how bad a player, only twice the no. of slams of Djoko-Murray combined, no? ;)
Oh, I can’t have enough of how the one-trick pony in 2009 got destroyed by DP, the same DP whom Rafa humiliated in the USO 10! And hey, one trick pony Hewitt also pushed Rod to 5 sets just last year, no?
How I wish the GREATLY TALENTED (hahaha!!!) Murrays/Djokos of the world coulda done better and shown a little more cowardice than the “one-trick pony” and “way past prime” Hewitt to tank their matches against another supposedly “one-trick pony” Rod in 5 sets in the slams in 2009! ;)

And oh the eternally doomed Nalby, he has never ever beaten the eternally pumped-up Nadal so far as I can remember. Oh yeah, Nadal has never lost to Nalby coz Nalby is another “one-trick pony” supposedly! ;)

And of course, Agassi was also in the downside of his career after winning 1999 FO, though he still won probabaly three AUS Opens and one USO after that. So what? Big deal? Only Rafa winning one AO is a big deal! ;)

Hey, whoever Fed faced during his prime has to be a “one-trick pony”! Got it? ;)

And please Guga was a threat only at the FO!! Does that count? No it can’t. It only counts when showing Rafa’s GS tally. Guga’s demoilition of Fed in 2004 FO shouldn’t count. Why should it? After all, we must only make the 4-0 record of Rafa over Fed in RG count! ;)

And why should even JC make the list of a Fed fan especially when we all know that JCF at beginning has consistently used to beat Fed (until, thankfully, Fed turned his H2H with JCF around) and won the FO 03? ;)

And most important of all, one has to be doping/smoking if his/her opinion differs from the known tard “tenisbebe”. ;)


tenisbebe Says:

The only retard hear is the one who can’t figure out how to turn off his CAP LOCK. Or use spellcheck. Maybe you should change your handle from HUH to DUH, but they equally indicate cluelessness in slang: That says it all regarding your post. Haha


Andrew Miller Says:

Marcelo Rios was one of my favorite players to watch, he could toy with someone (when he wanted to) but did not get the job done as a champion.

Nadal and Federer, Andy Roddick (Andy Murray too), prove how Rios could have done some damage if he tried a lot harder. What’s really going on with Nadal and Federer, it’s an incredible gift to tennis as a sport. All it takes is to look at what happenned with Marcelo Rios, whose incredible skill never made it to many viewers. or to big wins.

From an article:
http://thebiofile.com/2010/01/marcelo-rios-the-mysterious-champion/

“A player that I really liked to watch was Rios. I think he was one of the best players, ever. Because I remember one year when he was gonna play Thomas Muster in Rome. And I saw the press conference before the match. And they asked him, so how are you gonna be able to beat Muster, because he only had lost one or two matches on clay so far. And Rios said, ‘The guy should be happy if he gets like a couple of games.’And Rios went out there the next day and killed him, 1 and 2. And that’s for me unbelievable. I really liked to watch him. I didn’t like to play him though. But I really liked to watch him.” Asked why he didn’t enjoy the experience of playing Rios, Johansson replied: “He could make you feel like it was the first time you were standing on a tennis court, you know [smiling]? So I hated to play him. You could get killed by him easily, 1 and 1 or something like that, and you could have played a good match.”


Von Says:

huh: “And most important of all, one has to be doping/smoking if his/her opinion differs from the known tard “tenisbebe”. ;)”

I believe we’ve both been through some rough times on this site, and as a result we’ve developed empathy with each other, yes? If you concur, then you’d also remember that I’ve championed your cause on many occasions when I’ve felt you’ve been unjustly bashed, isn’t that so?

That said, I’d like to ask you a favour, which is to *not* label tenisbebe as a *tard*, et al. Please show her some respect as she’s a very knowledgeable poster who plays the sport on a competitive level and I happen to value her opinions tremendously. Additionally, you know that I value your input as well, and it’s the reason I’m taking the time to make this request to you. Thanks, Huh.


tenisbebe Says:

Yes Andrea, the mindless fanatics are so predictable with their criticisms. Perhaps they should go out a play a little tennis instead of putting forth idiotic drivel.


grendel Says:

SG

I am curious as to why you are so sure that Nadal only has another two or three years to be a force. (and b.t.w., if that means 11 slams, why win only 4 or 5 of them?). You were a big fan, I believe of Jimmy Connors. I remember him being interviewed a year or two after beating Ken Rosewall at Wimbledon (Rosewall was 40?), and the interviewer jokingly suggested Connors might last as long as Rosewall. Connors immediately demurred, pointing out that the Aussie had a smooth, effortless way of playing – quite unlike his own. And in fact, plenty of people were predicting that Connors would, owing to his vigorous and strength sapping style of play, be forced to retire early.

Yet, amazingly, he lasted just about as long as Rosewall, and ratcheted up a number of tourney titles which will never be equalled.

How can you be so sure Nadal will not do the same? It is true, he is more muscle bound than Connors, but it seems he has a pretty unusual physical consitution. And then medical technology is improving all the time, and may well be able to affect patch up jobs over and over. Moreover, unlike Connors, Nadal is surrounded by a team which is precisely geared to keep him going for as long as possible. The 6 week lay off which you allude to, which presumably you think is evidence for your thesis, could actually be seen as a sensible precautionary measure.

I wondered in an earlier post why the Rafa knees were supposed to respond so damagingly to the American hc season in the fall whilst emerging unscathed from the Jan-March hc season. One poster suggested that the 6 week lay off in Nov/Dec has a lot to do with it. Sounds sensible, then, to have a 6 week layoff right now.

Mental burn out – now that’s another matter, and frankly an imponderable. They say Borg was burnt out, but Borg himself himself maintained that being #2 was pointless (Borg was candid about these things). I think if Borg had beaten McEnroe at Wimbledon or New York, he’d have found his enthusiasm for the game surprisingly undiminished. Nothing like winning the big ones to keep that bright spark burning….


skeezerweezer Says:

mem,

“because there is nothing nadal will ever do in the eyes of some of these people that will give merit to his well-deserved achievements, not ever; get use to it! it’s no big deal; this normal for people who live their lives looking for excuses.”

Where you see “nadal” in your statement, put the word “Fed” and re read it. Sounds like you , no?


tennisfansince76 Says:

re: grendel. I think Borg was planning on coming back after a layoff. he trained for it and played exos ( like the 1982 michelob against connors. and that akai challenge where he crushed Mac like a grape. its on Youtube but the vid quality is awful) ). but I think the ATP played hardball against him. they were going to make him build up his ranking from nothing and qualify for tournaments. things like that. he got pissed and dropped out for good.


tennisfansince76 Says:

some people have been nostalgic for the faster grass. I have one name for you Wayne Arthurs. an aussie soutpaw. couldn’t move worth a damn. he could barely get his groundtrokes in the court. did absolutely nothing at other slams. he was not going to win Wimby but w/ his nasty leftie serve he was dangerous there ( and nowhere else ). agassi played him there one year. i think he won in straights but tense straights. oh wait I have another name for you guys. Greg Rusedski. think about it. A player like that should not even be on tour. he would lose 1st round nowadays and that is how it should be. It would be fine to have faster grass if W went back to wooden raquets. but the fast grass and the hi-tech raquets and strings would not be a good combination. the slower courts
definitely have helped Rafa but I believe they have helped roger. if W had the faster courts he probably would not have won 6 ( 5 in a row ). on really fast courts there is always the chance that you will be served off the court by an ivanisevich type. take Philipoussis for an example. he probably should have won a W or 2 ( i believe he was in the middle of howitzering Pete Sampras ) off the court one year when he blew out his knee. i am not a big fan of players w/ that style of play and am glad they are not thriving at W. in fact it was quite a happy day back in 2003 when RF
turned back the tide on lumbering dinosaur tennis in the W final.


mem Says:

skeezer, do i detect guilt? if the shoe doesn’t fit you why are worrying about wearing it? as i recall, you vowed to never read anything i write. what happened to your vow, did you suddenly get religion? just for the record, i’m not interested in how you interpret anything, rest assure, i know how to spell your name if i decide to single you out! understood! now run along!


Jurasick Says:

Well played, Nadal! Clearly, he has hit peak form. I just hope he can sustain his play without getting injured. Easier said than done, particularly in the hard grinding summer of hard-court tennis in the US and Canada.

For all Federer fans, it is time to sit back, relax and read my blog entry at http://srinivasmurty.com/joomla/index.php/jungle-geek-blog/federers-record.html on his 23 semi-final run. I relived a lot of old memories just writing this stuff.


Tennis Vagabond Says:

An amazing few months from Rafa, one of the most dominant periods in tennis history, 3 Masters and 2 Slams in a row? Amazing.
Rafa was incredible through the tournament, and especially against Murray and Soderling. Unfortunately, the finals was a dud. I was hoping for a great match, and Berdych was a HUGE disappointment. This wasn’t even like the Serena match where one player overwhelmed the other. Rafa frankly looked beatable. I mean, someone would have to play INCREDIBLE to pull it off, but he made some UEs, some poorly timed ouble faults… Berdych just didn’t come to play. He knocked off Fed and Djoker by rolling the dice and going for his shots. Against Rafa he held back. It was too bad for the tennis, but I’m sure Berdych will do better if he gets to a finals again.
Congrats to Rafa, an awesome tourney and season for him.

For sure Rafa has to be the favourite at the US, but not the runaway favourite like at the French. More like he was at Wimbledon, except this time he won’t be co-fave with Fed vs the Field, he will be closer to solo fave vs the field. In other words, I think there’s a greater chance he’ll be knocked off by someone other than Fed. Don’t know the status of Del Po. He is for sure a threat, but we really don’t know how he’ll come back. Big question mark, and would be a huge loss for tennis.

I agree that Murray is a threat at the USO, and so will Fed and Djokovic be. We’ll see if Gulbis is around, or if Cilic rediscovers his momentum. Cannot really see anyone else. Tsonga, Roddick, Soderling… does anyone see one of them seriously as a threat at the USO?

Anyways, great turning of the tide in the leadership of men’s tennis, and I say that as a huge Fed fan. Too bad Berdych ruined my Sunday morn!


Tennis Vagabond Says:

As for how many Rafa can bag, this is just a guessing game. How anyone can get upset or adamant about their predictions is beyond me. Lots of players have looked invincible then never won again. Mac, Wilander… maybe Federer? Could happen someday to Nadal too. We just don’t know. Even in Federer’s case, kind of a best case scenario in building HofF careers, it happened over a five year span of 2′s and 3′s a year (and 1 in 08). Assuming Nadal has five great years in him, how far into that is he? Will he stay as injury free as Fed has?
Not long ago it looked like Tiger would rewrite Jack’s records. Jack used to say, Not so fast. It ain’t easy being this good for a lot of years. That’s why there’s more Wilanders, Beckers and Edbergs, than Sampras or Federers.

Nadal is awesome right now, and I’ll throw my vote in with the 4-5 more camp. But if he won ten more it wouldn’t shock me.


Mark Monzon Says:

Nice article. Nice site, BTW. Nadal is simply playing near perfect tennis. To win the finals in Paris and London in straight sets is just amazing. Will have to check to see if Borg ever did that. Nadal could go and dominate tennis for five years. Fed’s record is definitely in danger. http://www.tennis-prose.com has a good article about it.


skeezerweezer Says:

mem,

Put out the post where I used the word “vow”. Your words sound sooooo,,, sexist. I am offended.
As you well know, “I have a right to change my mind whenever I want”. BTW, I am a dainty size 13, and it fits :)

Your posts are the same attacking never have to do with tennis, stats, and facts. Only how you “feel” and if your love for Rafa gets at a “sensitive” level.

There are fans of Rafa’s here that deserve congratulations, you will never be one of them. I know your ways as others do.

Go back to your trolling and hurtful ways…Sniff sniff…I’ll run and walk or talk as I want too, with respect to others here, not Trolls.

And,

There are two ways to argue with me, neither one works.

You want to post Tennis? Bring it! Otherwise, go to the “Others”

Shammooon!


mem Says:

skeezer,

what you think really, really, really matters to me! does that mean my posts actually interest you. i’m thrilled that you think so highly of me! sleep well my friend!


Skeezerweezer Says:

Your welcome mem, anything I can do to to help u out, I am honored :) j/k of course, ur ok, just trash talkin ya, and u have given back in kind, but no worries my skin is thick, musculariity is there and my testistrrone is intact. Have a good sleep ur self, and a sincere congrats to u and ur fav, it’s Rafa time!!! :)


Andrew Miller Says:

As always, the knees will be an issue. The fact of Nadal’s treatments say as much. That’s why I cant see him hoisting the USO trophy: doing so would be at the expense of future seasons. USO is a grind and players need cheap points, and I dont think Nadal gets enough of them.

Federer gets them – with his return game he would get free points, and as always served well. But Nadal to me gets fewer, and that wont work in Flushing Meadows.

So, I think, much as in past seasons, the US Open wont go to Nadal. I think even a player like Berdych is more dangerous on the hard courts of the USOpen. It’s a different matchup.


Thomas Says:

@Andrew
agree. I have a feeling that some random dark horse is gonna win the USO this yr. Probably someone like gulbis or berdych. We will see what happens in the NA masters. Federers a threat as well.


Rafa is weak Says:

anyone who says murray and djokovic provide better competition than roddick, hewitt or safin is smoking dope. the main reason nadal is raking up these slams is that he only has to face Federer on his tired legs. his peer group has not done much to provide him any competition. (murray and delpotro did, but too bad one is injured and the other guys game went south the last 6 months)

once djokovic, murray and delpotro wisen up, nadal will be toast. you could see that last season when djokovic murdered nadal in 3 matches after wimbledon, delpotro in 2 matches. nada had the look of a deer stuck in headlights.

come on young guns! step up and slay the beast.


margot Says:

Andrew Miller: Rafa wants it! Nuff said! Did u say Cilic, Tsonga, etc have “improved” more than Murray and Djko? Oh please.
grendel: According to Beeb(have not checked this) Big Bird is 4″ taller than Rafa but only 10lbs heavier. That’s some density of muscle.
tennisfan76: how very cruel about our Greg, how very true…
vov: great post @6.40. ditto from me.


Anna Says:

After reading through this forum I’m to tired to post much, but I do want to mention the “knee” situation since so many of you have opinions re
Rafa’s knees.

I’m sure most of you remember Rafa’s mini meltdown in Miami during the Andy R. match in which Rafa slapped his left knee. Well sometimes after Miami and before MC Rafa had a procedure
on his left knee which allowed him to play MC and the whole cc season PAIN FREE. He is now having the same procedure done to his right knee with the hopes of the same results. His doctor said the treatment is not to mask pain or deal with inflammation but rather to improve the “regeneration” of the tendon. The left knee has already proved successful so it is expected that the right knee will be as well.

Rafa didn’t elaborate on the procedure because he didn’t feel his English skills were up to the task, but I’ve read about stem cell/gene cell therapies showing good results for professional athletes who suffer from tendenitis. The tendons actually do regenerate and allow the athlete to participate in their sport for many years. Hopefully we’ll be finding out more about this in the weeks to come.


Von Says:

Joe W. “No offense to Dan or Sean but if I could see into the future I wouldn’t be blogging on Tennix X. Rather I would own Armstrong stadium or a 1000 series tournament and be hanging out with Fed and Mirka’s euro babe friends.”

Hey Joseph, I couldn’t let the aforementioned pass without giving you a little dig. You’re so right with respect to: “I wouldn’t be blogging on Tennix X”. Is there presently a blog-site known as *Tennix* X? Or, better still, will there be a blog site in the future named as such? I guess you’ll have to create your own blog site. If you do, I promise I’ll post early and often, as in voting. LOOL.

Re: Hanging out with Fed and Mirka’s Euro babe friends, I thought the one and only babe was and always will be, Anna Kournikova? You’re slipping Joseph! I just wanted to keep you on your toes.
________________
margot: Thanks. I have to give the kid a little chiding once in a while — some tough love was needed. After all, I’m Mrs. Von and you’re Mrs. Margot, regular school marms. ha ha


Von Says:

skeezer: “musculariity is there and my testistrrone is intact.”

What on earth is *testistrrone*? Is this a new, yet to be patented hormone, os something similar to *petal to the metal*? Gotta keep you on your toes. LOOL

______________
RIW: “anyone who says murray and djokovic provide better competition than roddick, hewitt or safin is smoking dope.” R?

As a Roddick fan, I’ve got to add my two cents by stating that Andy gives his all when he plays, and leaves everything on the court, plus he’s built like a tank. Hewitt is the epitome of tenacity, and Safin, when he’s on, is a joy to behold.


Von Says:

Anna: “The tendons actually do regenerate and allow the athlete to participate in their sport for many years.”

Scientists have been able to develop new techniques to grow cartilage in test tubes and then implant the cartilage into the kneee, similar to grafting. I saw a video on how the procedure is done, which i found to be very fascinating and provides hope for athletes who are suffering from knee wear and tear.

One of my orthopedic surgeon’s partners has done this procedure on a few athletes, viz., baseball players, and have gotten very good results. Thus, if Rafa is having these implants/grafts done, then it might be safe to say that his tennis career will be lengthened. I hope that these grafts work for Rafa.


montecarlo Says:

Excellent post Anna.


Huh Says:

BEBE:

NICE TO KNOW THAT YOU’RE EVEN MORE RETARDED THAN I EVER THOUGHT YOU, HAHAHA.


Huh Says:

HI MRS VON! :)

Thanks for your nice words but its the moronic ‘tenisbebe’ who started it all with her garbage post at July 5, 4.32 pm. In the midst of her epileptic fits, she called Hewitt one trick pony, called me Fedaholic (another gem of her fave meaningless word) and even screamed that I


Huh Says:

HI MRS VON! :)

Thanks for your nice words but its the moronic ‘tenisbebe’ who started it all with her garbage post at July 5, 4.32 pm. In the midst of her epileptic fits, she called Hewitt one trick pony, called me Fedaholic (another gem of her fave meaningless word) and even screamed that I was truly smoking dope! Actually I feel for her as she is so pathetic. Bitter as she’s by nature, I did not start anything, she did. So you have to ask her to stop her inane ramblings at me too.

But none trick ponys like ‘tenisbebe’ who’ve the mediocrity to term Hewitt as a “one trick pony” are always gonna be regarded by me as undeserving of any respect. She’s really pathetic. I can’t change that.

HOWEVER, I RESPECT YOU AND WOULD ALWAYS DO COZ YOU ARE SO NICE, FAIR AND KIND TO ME AND TO ALL AND DON’T EVER LET ANYTHING COME IN THE WAY OF GIVING YOUR HONEST AND FAIR JUDGMENT. YOU’VE EARNED MY RESPECT COZ OF THAT AND IT’LL FOREVER REMAIN SO. But the same cannot be said of others. Especially about a stupid self-styled know-it-all like “tenisbebe”. Unless “tenisbebe” is actually lying about playing at a competitive level, I can’t believe she can call a player like Hewitt a one-trick pony.

As I now firmly believe about tenisbebe, once a none-trick pony, always a none-trick pony!


Von Says:

Hi margot: I answered you but my post seems to have disappeared.

____________
Huh: Just let it go.


Von Says:

Huh: Just let it go.
____________
Margot: I answered your post, but my comments seems to have disappeared.


Dan Martin Says:

Anyway to up the civility here at tennis-x?


Dan Martin Says:

that should read “Any way”


contador Says:

Anna-

it’s promising. stem cell therapy has of course been around a long time and is big ethical controversy if talking about the fetal type. There are other methods too, available outside the US, which i’m not too aware, but perhaps rafa had prp:

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=platelet-rich-plasma-therapy-dennis-cardone-sports-medicine-injury

http://www.nj.com/sports/njsports/index.ssf/2009/07/cuttingedge_plateletrich_plasm.html


contador Says:

Joe W-

thanks for the reply. your post made me laugh. : )

then this:

” …Fed and nadal are an example of force multiplication.”

yeah, not sure how much federer is part of the “force” , nadal is definitely doing the heavy lifiting, i’d say 2/3 of it and maybe soon 3/4.

or maybe someone will spoil their party soon?

cheers


Huh Says:

MRS. VON:

I am glad that you still love this kid and always advise for his better. I like that so much about you! :) :P

Ok Mrs. Von, I assure you that I’d henceforth let it go as I’m least interested in interacting with those who call Hewitt/Rod as one-trick pony.

It woulda been much better at tennis-x if people remained balanced, fair-minded, decent, really knowledgeable, respectful and objective as you. But then, there’s a reason why life’s not fair.

THAT SAID, PLEASE FORGIVE IF I PAINED YOU IN ANY MANNER. I’D TRY TO FOLLOW YOUR GOOD ADVICE AND BE BETTER. :P


grendel Says:

Tennis Vagabond says: “As for how many Rafa can bag, this is just a guessing game. How anyone can get upset or adamant about their predictions is beyond me. Lots of players have looked invincible then never won again. Mac, Wilander… maybe Federer? Could happen someday to Nadal too. We just don’t know.”

Of course this is absolutely true. The unknown is always skulking around the corner, waiting to pounce. I don’t think I ever thought Wilander was invincible, but McEnroe certainly looked it for a bit, and his defeat by Kevin Curren at Wimbledon was extraordinary. For those who can recall, McEnroe had actually signalled earlier in the tourney that something was amiss with him, not injury or anything, just that elusive spark. And then Mac just stopped winning g/slams – a real puzzle.

I’ve always thought there were similarities between McEnroe and Federer, not in their games of course, but in the fact that both operated within very slender margins; it didn’t need much straying from the norm for either of their games to go just wrong enough to make winning difficult.

Short term prediction tends to be a mug’s game, so long term guesswork is probably not much more valid than sticking a number of possibilities into a hat and drawing at random. So I certainly am not adamant about what will happen. But that doesn’t mean to say you can’t question certain things: viz, is it really true that Nadal’s type of game precludes a long career? I have no answer to this myself, but I am interested in drawing other people out to see what they have to say and already Anna, for example, has made an interesting contribution.

Besides, fortune telling has always been great fun…


Anna Says:

Contador – Stem cell therapy has been around for a while but it’s use for tendenitis/arthritis moved beyond trial just a few years ago. Platelet rich plasma therapy is being discussed as the possible therapy as well. Whatever the procedure it allows him to play within days and he’s obviously thrilled with the results. He played like a man on fire at MC and seems to be excited about “his chances” at the USO. btw, people who drop in on a whim to take a jab at someone is really irritating, and Rafa is a fan of Contador as well.


Dan Martin Says:

Anytime you hear the words injection and own blood it can lead to images of marathon runners re-infusing their own red blood cells or something. I need to read more, but this (PRP) appears to be a distinctive therapy. I do think this new therapy underlines another way in which it is hard to compare eras. Players as recent as Pat Cash and Richard Krajicek were quite injury prone. Perhaps PRP therapy would have augmented their careers and also taken a few titles away from their contemporaries. Bernard King was an elite NBA player who tore his ACL and was out for 2 seasons and returned with limited lateral movement. Now an ACL injury might cause a player to miss one season maximum. Times change.


Huh Says:

When Federer won the FO-WIM duo in 2009 or the AO 10, so many articles containing reflections and afterthoughts were pouring in, but why not any article is coming out here now that Rafa did the amazing FO-WIM thing for the second time? Time to post an article about the aftereffects of this FO-WIM two-peat from Nadal and its impact on the tour as a whole. Oh article writers of tennis-x, please bring on something interesting concerning how much this impressive Nadal feat would contribute to establishing his aura or stuff like chances of Rafa at finally winning all the 4 slams in a row.

DAN MARTIN & SEAN RANDALL:

I would like an article from you guys about this.


Huh Says:

DAN:

I dunno whether you know it or not, but I congratulated you on the good news of the birth of your baby boy a few threads back.
How is the little one right now? :P


Skeezerweezer Says:

@Von

In Fact, “testistrrone” is a new therapy I am taking for my chronic condition, Beer – citus.


Anna Says:

Be careful Skeeze, “testistrrone” is known to cause baldness and blindness to boot.


Skeezerweezer Says:

Anna….good one! LOL!!

So can I share a short story since we are on this topic?

I am “older”, not “old”. I read about Steroids and heard all the great things it does. You recover quicker, build muscle faster, recover from injury faster, play tennis better, just really cool stuff. I read about the long term effects but I thought, heck, in 30 years I’ll be too old to care, die of old age already, so what? I can understand if you are young and the potentially deadly things that result, but I am an older guy, it should only benefit me.

So I happily march down to my Drs. office with conviction and can hardly wait to talk him into prescribing me the stuff.

I said “So Doc”, what do ya think? He says “Sure I can do that”. I said “Great! Uh.. so..is there any side effects from taking this?” Doc says “only a few, but not life threatening at your age”. I says “Great! Uh…what side effects?” Doc says; “Well, one of them is that your b@lls will shrink, we have had some documented cases down to peanut size.”

Well, that is my story. Oh, and by the way, I don’t take Steroids……..

True story! :)


Anna Says:

Skeezer – Very funny!! Highly suspicious of steroids and viagra. If we all just ate like Nadal we’d probably live to be 100.


montecarlo Says:

Steve Tignor almost copy pasted my views today. Tall Ball Bashers aren’t really a problem to Nadal anymore.
…………….

The Czech was a former nemesis of Nadal’s. He beat him three straight times at one stage, and his assets were seen as the template for how to beat Nadal: He was tall enough to handle his topspin, he could hit through the court on either side, and he owned a two-handed backhand that could go toe-to-toe with Nadal’s crosscourt forehand.

Considering that Nadal has beaten Berdych in their last seven matches without dropping a set, how do we like that template now? Watching the final, I started to think that Berdych’s game is exactly the wrong one to throw up against Rafa, and the reason for that turnaround was obvious: Nadal had transformed all of Berdych’s old strengths against him into weaknesses. He drew errors by hitting low slice backhands that forced Berdych to bend and dig. He hit his crosscourt forehand at a safe and slightly wider angle than normal to take advantage of Berdych’s lack of reach with his two-hander. And most important, he stretched Berdych with his bending slice serve to the backhand side and fired the ball into the tall man’s body to jam him.

Turning your opponent’s strengths into liabilities, and your own liabilities into strengths: There’s the mark of a mature player, and it’s got nothing to do with muscle or speed. Nadal and his uncle Toni once said, with all sincerity, that when Rafa began his pro career he had the worst serve on tour—the worst. Look what that shot is doing for him now; he just went through a Grand Slam final unbroken.

………….


SG Says:

Grendel,

No one can truly be sure how long an athlete will last. I’m only speculating on Nadal. Others speculate he’ll end up with more slams than Fed. I’m not sure. I’m just looking at the way Nadal plays and I can’t imagine he could hold up for another 5 years.

As for Connors, yes he played a more physical game than Rosewall. But, his game was no where near as violent as Rafa’s. Connors played a “hit it on the rise” game with powerful but compact strokes. Not a lot of strain on joints and knees. And Connors looked for ways to shorten points. He didn’t exclusively camp at the baseline. Most importantly, Connors probably weighed about 30-35 lbs less than Rafa. That extra 35 lbs of muscle looks good to the ladies, but it’s murder on your joints. Especially those testy knees of his.

With all the above said, I’m probably completely out to lunch. Hell, I still think Pete Sampras is the best grass court player ever.


Huh Says:

“Hell, I still think Pete Sampras is the best grass court player ever.”

SG:

Hey, you needn’t even say that coz whether anybody agrees to it or not is immaterial! The only truth on this matter is Sampras indeed is the GOAT of GRASS and the undisputed “KING OF WIMBLEDON”. :D


gypsy Says:

Congrats to Rafa. what an amazing tennis player. I am a die hard fed fan, but seeing Rafa’s form I think he is going to blast every record. Life happens even to tennis greats like Fed. It is what it is. Nadal wants to win USO really really bad and I think he will do it. His will and stamina are amazing.I really do not think any one else has the game or the mental strength to beat him. He does not have any weakness. But, I still cannot be a Rafa fan though I respect him immensely.

Even the media are still ripping Roger for his comments on injuries, I do have to give him respect. He is not backing down, because I truly believe his injuries are real. He has always been honest even when it lands in in hot water. And he has been termed as boring. LOL

The PRP therapy is very interesting. Seems to have given Rafa a second life. I wonder if it has a lifelong healing effect or is it a stop gap measure, for a short time. Only time will tell. I


gypsy Says:

I meant i wish both Rafa and Roger well. I hope Roger wins a few more slams because I sure love watching him play.


Dan Martin Says:

Huh,

Thanks for the kind wishes and things are going well minus a deficit in sleep. My wife gets less sleep so I can’t complain.

As for the article on Nadal’s feat. Good idea for an article. Time is not on my side at the moment and I am working on a piece not relating to that topic, but I could fit it in before Canada starts I am sure. I think most of what I wrote about Fed last year was the career slam, getting to 14 and getting to 15 but the double channel double is historically significant too. Nadal reclaiming #1 for the year (I am calling the election results early even if the New York, Cincinnati, Paris and Shanghai precincts have not yet been counted) after losing it also a big deal. Federer and Lendl are the only other two to do this at year end. I am trying to write a few times per month, but I did take a lot of time off after February.

My list of post-Laver era champions currently sits at

1. Fed 2. Pete 3. Borg 4. Connors & Lendl tie 6. Rafa 7. Mac 8. Agassi 9. Edberg 10. Becker with Mats sitting at #11. I could be argued into Mats being #9 and Becker and Edberg tying for 10 and could be argued into Andre being ahead of Mac, but I do think Mac’s doubles titles mean something and think Edberg and Becker were more formidable than Mats on every surface outside of clay.

It is odd to think that Nadal has equaled Edberg’s Wimbledon title total and has one more Wimbledon final than the consummate serve-volley player of my youth.


grendel Says:

Coach Patrick Mouratoglou recently said about Nadal: “I remember seeing him in the players’ lounge after his loss to Ivan Ljubicic in Indian Wells. He was standing alone, holding his head and suffering deeply.”

That tells you a lot about Nadal. It reminds me a bit of Pete Sampras in his interview following his defeat by Kraijeck at Wimbledon. He was looking completely dazed, as if he couldn’t understand what had happened. When the interviewer asked him if he thought the Dutchman could go on and win Wimbledon, Sampras looked at him as if wondering what on earth he was drivelling on about, and then he almost visibly pulled himself together, and answered in the affirmative.

These guys don’t like to lose, big time. No wonder they put so much effort into winning. Desire is all. Assuming etc.

SG says: “Hell, I still think Pete Sampras is the best grass court player ever.” This is in the same spirit as Dan Martin’s comment a couple of posts later: “It is odd to think that Nadal has equaled Edberg’s Wimbledon title total and has one more Wimbledon final than the consummate serve-volley player of my youth.”

Yes, well – it’s a different surface now. I think if Nadal and Federer could somehow be transported back to Sampras’ time, neither would have won a single Wimbledon. On the other hand, if peak Sampras could have been shot forward into Fed/Nadal time, he probably would have made some inroads. So I agree with SG and Huh. However, in twenty or thirty years time, people will have a different view of Wimbledon – unless, of course, the powers that be decide to revert.


Dan Martin Says:

Does Newport play like slower grass or more like the grass courts of the 70′s – 90′s? There is no real need for it to play like Wimbledon as it is not a tune-up event.


Dan Martin Says:

Also, I grew up emulating Becker, Sampras, Edberg (he did win down under twice on grass so 4 slams on grass) and Stich as a junior player. The coach at UK told me I played like Stich when he watched me do some drills. I probably played more like Stich’s non-athletic second cousin.

Still, it has been hard for me to get my head around Nadal’s game (Murray’s too – an updated Mats Wilander?). So much of what I learned to do as a player is passe now. Hit a deep slice off of a short ball to the corner and move forward, follow your first serve in, chip and charge on returns of second serves …

Federer’s game is also different from what I learned, but his foundational skills are not really alien to Becker, Sampras, Stich’s … From 2001-2003 I sort of viewed Fed as Euro-Sampras playing a similar game to Pete’s with more spin and less power. In 2004 Roger’s game came into its own. Still, Fed’s game has been easier for me to comprehend and that has undoubtedly impacted the topics I have written on here at tennis-x.


Von Says:

@ contador: “stem cell therapy has of course been around a long time and is big ethical controversy if talking about the fetal type.”

Stem cell therapy is very different from PRP, and a lot more involved with respect to the amount of time it takes to produce beneficial results to the patient. Conversely, PRP can, and has, healing of the affected ligament/tendon in a matter of days. I suppose Nadal is using the same treatment Tiger Woods was given a while back. Hopefully, it will work for him and tennis will be the winner.

_______________
@ skeezer: LOL, only you would be adventurous enough to try that type of treatment. Try HGH, but watch out for your falling hair. LOL.

______________
Huh: All’s good, and I knolw that you’ll be good also.


midsun Says:

Huh wrote:
“Time to post an article about the aftereffects of this FO-WIM two-peat from Nadal and its impact on the tour as a whole. Oh article writers of tennis-x, please bring on something interesting concerning how much this impressive Nadal feat would contribute to establishing his aura or stuff like chances of Rafa at finally winning all the 4 slams in a row.”

Don’t hold your breath. Not here on Fed-X.


goat galz Says:

WTF- Fed will be number one for the US Open and he will beat Murray again.If he can’t do it Nadal will.

Sean-yes, Nadal had an easy final against Berd and an equally easy final with Murray.

DH- Fed in decline? Murray is toast.

A “lion” will challenge Fed but Murray won’t. Junkballers like him can’t win.

Oh, and Von, Fed or Nadal will beat Roddick again at US Open.

Carry on, children.


skeezerweezer Says:

@midsun,

Your kinda talk is so old,,,,,,you don’t know anything about this site and the articles and hard work that they produce. The fact that you comment makes it relevant. Look deeper into the site before you make a flippant comment. Geez…… Do you realize when you look at a post or comment your helping the site? It’s called “hits” and they generate money from it. Thank you “littlesun”


its all abt da game Says:

@Dan,July 6th, 2010 at 6:46 pm
The list you posted there is an excellent one, and the perfect list in Open Era tennis. Even though it is your list, it is the true list without dubt (except that Lendl will edge out Connors for 4th position)
BTW, if you start considering doubles titles of Mac, that would change the whole dynamics of this list.
As a singles player, he is above Agassi, just above Agassi. You don’t need to consider doubles for that.


Huh Says:

Well, all I did was that I requested Dan and Sean to post articles on the WIM 10 aftereffects and I was in no way intendin to take a dig at those two guys. I know I like Sean and particularly Dan so much! That’s why I wanted them to write an article. Thus, there’s no need to be so sensitive about it and start terming tennis-x as Fed-x coz everyone knows that even at RF.com, the fedfans post criticising and bashing Fed for his stubornness etc. and praising Rafa for his improvement and tact! Even in the official Federer site, praising/bashing Fed is allowed, not to mention tennis-x! Tennis-X is probably one of the safest places in the whole world for the big time anti-Feds, thus actually it’s far from anything close to Fed-X. Thanks.


Skeezerweezer Says:

@Huh

“Exactly”. Thanks big “Huh”!


Golf is barely a Sport Says:

I agree with Huh. I think Martin is a really good writer. I wish he would write more often is all.


Polo Says:

I have the post-Wimbledon blues which started after the men’s quarterfinals. I watched the finals and was underwhelmed by Berdych’s performance but I was in awe of Nadal. He is clearly the best in the game right now. I think Federer, in spite of his performances since after the Australian O, is still the only player who comes closest to Nadal…although not too close because Nadal seems to be breaking away from the rest of the field. I believe he will very happy after the US Open. I am very curious about how Federer will do next year. I am also looking forward to del Potro’s return. He may be the only one who can challenge Nadal in the coming years. I don’t think Murray, Djokovic, Soderling or Berdych can do it. They will probably be forever relegated to B-level status.


grendel Says:

Polo says:” I am very curious about how Federer will do next year”.
I’m hoping he will be a predatory lurker. Sort of discounted, but still capable, every now and again, of putting in an exceptional performance which ROCKS THE BOAT.
dreaming is permitted.


Polo Says:

Grendel, I think Federer will be more than just a predatory lurker. He is still very capable of winning any event he enters. To think that he can win another major next year is closer to reality than just a dream.


jane Says:

“They will probably be forever relegated to B-level status.”

Care to share what “B-level status” means to you Polo? Do you mean, for example, not one of those greats in the list Dan Martin gives above (July 6th 6:46 pm), but maybe just players who win a slam or two each, kind of thing? Just curious.


jane Says:

grendel, I agree with Polo. Calling Fed a “predatory lurker” and implying it’s a dream to see him as such, seems a tad premature and /or pessimistic. He’s still number 3/2 (only a few points separate him and Nole, and he’s a gritty competitor nowadays. His slam results this year – Winner, QF, QF – are some I’d be happy about for Nole or Murray!! I think you’ve been spoiled from too much winning. ; ) I am just kidding, but seriously. Fed’s fans have basked in the glory of victory like fans of no other.


jane Says:

p.s. grendel, that’s coming from a pessimist (i.e., me) so I understand. But with Fed, so much gives you reason to be optimistic. He has a few more slumps and early losses now, to be sure, but he’s still one of the very best and definitely will be a slam contender next year, not merely a lurker. I should think. But then maybe you know more than I, having followed him so closely for so long.

Off topic – agreed with your post about the “young lion” Becker. To me he rather came “out of nowhere” – and his run to the title at Wimbledon when he was 17 is one of the most exciting memories I have in my early tennis watching days…


Polo Says:

Jane, what I meant when I classified some players as B-level is that among the currently active players, they are very good but not quite up to the level that Federer and Nadal have reached. Those 2 are the only ones who I will consider as A-level players based on their winning record and consistency especially in the majors.


Joe W Says:

Dan – you must be a hoops fan? As a Bullets fan, I loved Bernard even when he was a ‘Knick. Even after his knee surgeries, he was a nice pick up for the Bullets. Moses Malone – King’s team mate with the Bullets – was another player who likely would have benefited from PRP and advances in medicine. All the players from that era would also have benefited from better sneakers! Chuck Taylors didn’t provide a lot of support.

You went to UK? Who was the BB coach then?


Joe W Says:

Von – I would expect a copy edit of my posts from Jane the professor, not you. I’m not really much of a blogger. This the only site where I do blog. But if I were the richest guy in the world rest assured there would be a site just for you.

In re: to Anna K, I think she would be too high maintenance. In the looks department, Mirka’s friends can hold their own with Anna (Fed’s “friends” too e.g., Lindsay Von)


skeezerweezer Says:

After reading your posts I am optimistic about Fed as well. When your on top of the hill, eventually there is nowhere to go but down. At while your at the top of that mountain, only one person can be there. It is a lonely spot, but a glorious one I am sure.

Let’s face it, Fed hasn’t taken a break from the top of the hill, nor asperations from it, in years ( 6? ). He did take a one step down for a brief period but boldly took that one step back up. He stamped his brilliance on the history records by taking Wimby 2009. #15, and AO 2010, #16.

Then the flame went out.

Are we spoiled? Absolutely.

We all saw this coming. We talked about it up here on the blog. What is Fed’s life gonna be like after getting married and having 2 kids, and getting the record of GS titles, all within the same period?

So this next year will we see Fed Version 2? I hope so. Version 1 from this years tale is gone. USO this year? Nah. If he does? I’ll drink a six pack in his honor. IMO I wish he took the rest of the year off. Spend it with the Fam. He always complains he can’t get enough practice in to work on things. Well now is your chance. He is still young and can afford to do it, if he truly wants to play until he is 35. Something needs to happen, mentally, physically, or both.

No matter what he says, anyone who knows something about life ( and we all do ) these events he had are life changing events. There is a cause and effect.

The effect is here. Now. His performance ( or his lack of keeping up with the playing field )has proven it. So far. To date.

So what happens from here on out?

Will the GOAT come and go in tourneys here and there, but when he enters everyone will know, he can win the tourney? Will he come in now and then and steal a slam? Will he come in like Aggasi or Serena unseeded for a tourney and win a Slam? Should a #1 ranking really matter to him anymore?

So I am excited to see what V2 will be in the last part of his career. He’s a smart cookie, something will happen, how, only he knows. Bring it Fed!


SG Says:

You don’t write off a guy with Fed’s resume.


Huh Says:

Skeeze:

If Fed wins USO 10, I would also CELEBRATE!


Daniel Says:

This taking breaks doens’t really work in tennis (except if you are Agassi). Fed just needs to hang in there. Eventually everything will fall in it’s place: heath, focus, timing, good day, you call it, and when this happens he will have a run like AO again!

Just look at Nadal’s run in this Wimby. Only his fans thought he woud win after those 2 back to back five setter, and not all of them. Suddenly, after being 0-5 down to Soderling he found his form and won 9 sets in a row on top of the world.

Tennis is a What have you done for me lattely?!, and right now, Nadal is the man. In four months, if Fed wins US Open and London tour final, everything will change again. Not saying it will happen, just hoping!:)


jane Says:

Joe W – I rarely edit my own posts let alone those of others! LOL. Besides, how to edit a poet such as yourself? I love your ponderous and poetic input when it comes. Hope your back is mending … or mended. : )


jane Says:

Thanks for your reply Polo – yes, the rarified air of A-level thus belongs to few. :/


grendel Says:

jane: re Becker. Yes, that double run, Queens followed by Wimbledon, was extraordinarily exciting. Especially in my case, because I’d seen a little bit of him already – he’d been highlighted as a kid of great promise who might well do something startling in three or four years. Instead, he did something highly startling almost at once.

Virginia Wade, who was as taken with Becker following his Wimbledon triumph as everybody else, did sound a little note of caution. She wondered whether it was good for Becker to win so young. And with hindsight, you can’t help wondering if she had a point. Becker won Wimbledon the following year, and you thought Borg’s record was definitely in danger.

But something happened. Development seemed to stop. That amazingly free, loose, open play of Becker’s began to seem a little rigid, a little forced. For free flowing play,you’d go to his great rival, Edberg, who actually seemed to become better than Becker – whereas Becker had won most, if not all, of their early matches.

Somehow, that glorious talent never seemed to be quite fulfilled. He became a disappointing player to follow. You dreaded it when he played Agassi or Sampras – they always seemed to have his number relatively without too much difficulty, and it was not as if he was so very much older than them.

But I’ll always remember Becker the 17 year old. Even now, when I’ve seen him many times on television as a 40 plus year old commentator, the image which comes into my head of Becker is of the large, startling youth with wide eyes and floppy red golden hair, leaning back in that characteristicly springy manner as he set up to serve, and then exploding into the ball which flashes past his opponent as his own momentum carries him to the net, crouching, ready and eager eyed.


Huh Says:

Skeeze:

Strange as it may sound to some Fed fans, but I’d also, like ya, want Fed to take a break for the rest of this year, then come back next year and not just defend his AO, but also reclaim the RG from Rafa. Now that’d be the perfect slap on the face of smug writers like Linda Robertson.

C’mon Murray-The Terrible, the USO 10 crown is yours!!

C’mon “King”, defend your AO crown and wrest the clay kingdom from the unfolding grip of “The King of Clay” and Re-Establish your supremacy!!

And General Roddick must finally wave the American Flag over ‘the Land of the Union Jack’!

Moreover the Argentine Giant and Serbian Commander too must be hopefully ready to repeat their heroics sooner than later.

And it almost goes without saying that ‘Matadore de Tennis’ aka ‘The Spanish Hero’ aka ‘The King of Clay’ aka ‘The Prince of Tennis’ would continue his glorious march towards immortality.


Joe W Says:

Jane, thanks for asking. I’m pretty much mended now. I’ve realized that youth would be an ideal state if it came a little later in life. Are you getting ready for school?

Gypsy, Huh and Skeez (hummed to the Cher song Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves) et al. I wonder if Fed reclaiming #2 by year end is more likely with the opportunity to regain #1 next year. Opportunity meaning he has to knock rafa off of the hill while keeping some of the pesky up-and-comers at bay. Rafa will be defending a lot of points next year even if he has a sub par summer and fall this year.


Huh Says:

GRENDEL:

You are very good at giving brilliant and insightful posts about present and tennis greats. Just Fantastc!! Love your nostalgic posts about Becker, Connors etc, you write so well that you almost make the readers(including a 20 yr old guy like me) almost feel the excitement of watching the superb Becker turning the clock back! It speaks volume about the liveliness, class and appeal of your reflective writing.

Gotta give you credit… BIG TIME!!!

Keep those great posts coming.


midsun Says:

“Your kinda talk is so old,,,,,,you don’t know anything about this site and the articles and hard work that they produce. The fact that you comment makes it relevant. Look deeper into the site before you make a flippant comment. Geez…… Do you realize when you look at a post or comment your helping the site? It’s called “hits” and they generate money from it. Thank you “littlesun””

I, in fact, have looked “deeper” into this site, which is why I commented as I did. How is saying a site is biased toward Roger dismissing the hard work that goes into it? I happen to enjoy this site and many posters and some of the articles. Was what I saw so outlandish and horrible that it called for you to insult me? Well, I guess Tennis-X can prove me wrong by actually posting some of those post-Wimbledon Rafa-friendly articles.


Huh Says:

Another forgettable day with Gremany losing to Spain. :/

Go Holland!!!


grendel Says:

Huh – as usual, an enthusiastic and generous post. Are you really only 20? I decline to say how old I am. I’m like the vampire in that touching Swedish film “Let the Right One In”. The young boy asks the vampire girl “Are you very old?” and she replies “I’m 12 years old.” And then she adds as a sort of afterthought:”I’ve been 12 years old for a long time”.

Perhaps I’ll still be 12 years old when you’re 70. Just think how many tennis champions will have come and gone by then. What will people think of Federer then? What will you think of Federer? Will the slam record holder still be Nadal with his 18? Or will someone have come along and smashed it out of sight with 25? Will people be having ferocious arguments about whether he is the GOAT or not? And will you still be putting in a word for Federer?


skeezerweezer Says:

Deeper? Like the last week? Biased towards Roger? Look below. Yeah this is a Fed site all right. And A Rafa one, and A Djoke one, and a Murray one, and a Sampras one, and a Roddick one, etc…..

“July 7th, 2010

Rafael Nadal ATP Wimbledon Uncovered [Video]

by Tom Gainey”

“July 4th, 2010

Nadal Buries Berdych, Somersaults His Way to Second Wimbledon Title

by Sean Randall”

July 3rd, 2010

“Rafael Nadal the Man to Beat in Wimbledon Final, But Can Berdych Pull the Upset?

by Sean Randall

July 2nd, 2010″

“Nadal Beats Murray, Meets Beckham at Wimbledon, Faces Berdych in Final

by Sean Randall”


jane Says:

grendel – great description of Becker; I hadn’t watched Queens back then as I am not sure I had access to it on TV, and surely no “streaming” so Beckers breakthrough at Wimbledon was even more striking. I have three (yes 3!) older brothers and we all sat amazed, watching Becker, in his youthful exuberance, dive all over the lawns and upturn the expected. But you’re so right! He did get rather wooden later on. Sad, really. But we still have the memories of the flowing and exciting tennis. And, just a note: I loved “Let the Right One In” – the ending could be either sweet or utterly horrific. How often can you say that? The book too is very good.


jane Says:

Joe W. – no, not getting ready yet. These are the lazy days of summer for me. Sprinklers, radio, BBQ, tennis, reading, swimming, all that. So glad to hear that you’re mended, and indeed, youth is wasted on the young. Or something like that.


Huh Says:

Yes Grendel,

I’d still be arguing for Fed at the age of 70! :)

Would be arguing that Fed’s without doubt one of the greatest ever to have held a racquet, as I still argue about Borg or Pete or even Rocket Rod! These guys deserve to be called as one of the best ever and to call ANY ONE of them as the greatest ever sounds pretty funny as well as absurd TO ME at least.


Huh Says:

GRENDEL:

My date of birth : June 30, 1990.


grendel Says:

well, Huh, Happy Birthday for last week!
jane, yes it was an ambiguous ending to that film – although, on the whole, as the implications sink in,chiefly horrific I’d say. I hadn’t realised it was a book as well.


Anna Says:

Predatory Lurker, that’s great, I think we have a few of those on this site as well. Actually I think Fed would love the role. Pressure off, no expectations and then just sneak in and grab a slam. Fed could definitely wreak some havoc for a few years to come.

Grendel – I too am a fan :). I mostly admire your sly humour, but I also get tickled when you use certain vernacular, like “bonnie”. It reminds me of my enchanted trip to Scotland many moons ago.


Anna Says:

After Rafa’s semifinal win, someone from the Spanish press asked what he would write about Roger Federer if he were a journalist.

“First,” Rafa replied, “No way I would ever be a journalist.” He went on to say, “You guys have tried to kill Roger often. But he’s always come back and proved you wrong. So one thing I would not do is make the mistake of saying Roger is dead.”

Never underestimate Roger!!! Words to live by as far as Rafa’s concerned. And wasn’t it Roger who said early in the year, “We have yet to see Nadal’s best tennis”. When Soderling took Roger out of the FO the press asked Roger if he preferred Soderling to win so that he could break the record of # of weeks at #1. Roger said “I would prefer that the better player win and that would be Rafa”.

These two just kill me!! I wish they could play forever!!


skeezerweezer Says:

@Anna 12am post.

Now you are a Tennis X Platinum member. Thanks for the entertaining post and find. Wish there were more posters like you! Very cool read :)


margot Says:

Grendel, jane: didn’t Becker, Djko, Delboy all have that incredible, all conquering, self confidence that young men have? Djko and Delboy both got slams at that time, unfortunately at that crucial time Andy merely got a wrist injury.
Is why I don’t feel Delboy will come back the same.
As for Rafa I feel he’s going to have 2-3 glory years and may well surpass Roger’s record. Hasn’t he got 8 slams already? However, I don’t feel, no matter what the bionic technology, he’ll have the same shelf life as Roger. He’s already had injuries in other places, as they all do of course.


jane Says:

margot, yes, good point – before the pressure, expectations or injury hit, Delpo and Djoko both snatched one didn’t they? Too bad for Murray that had that untimely wrist injury. I guess they can’t all have the mettle of Fed and Rafa, but I sure hope to see Murray and Djoko get a couple/few big ones before they hang it up.

What you say about Delpo intrigues me; you think he won’t “come back the same”? That he won’t play so freely? That he’ll feel the pressure? If so, you could be right. In fact, if the “depression” rumours are true, he may already feel it, which is so sad and I hope untrue. So many of us on this site have great expectations for his return.

And look how things turned out for Pip. :/


contador Says:

@ Von

uh yeah, autologous stem cell therapy vs fetal cell or embryo is what i meant. but prp is essentially stem cell therapy.

platelet rich plasma therapy- and injection of ones own stems cells harvested, centrifuged and injected into the affected area.

how would i know what exactly rafa received but here is the description of what i would guess.

http://www.stemcellorthopedic.com/stem-cell-therapy.html


Huh Says:

ANNA:

Thanks, thanks, thanks!!! What a great post at July 8th, 2010 at 12:00 am! Kudos to you! You’re a really good person, a great poster and fan. Regards.


Huh Says:

LONG LIVE ROGER!

LONG LIVE RAFA!

THESE TWO GUYS ARE THE AMONG THE BEST THINGS TO HAVE EVER HAPPENED TO TENNIS!

I LOVE TENNIS!


contador Says:

sounds pretty promising, sure, but it is rather new, prp. i doubt it is the “cure all” that it is touted but better than long-term corticosteroid injections which tend to help at first but if used too much often have an opposite effect.

perhaps delpo had some adjunctive prp pre or post carpel tunnel surgery? why not. might help him heal faster. or maybe he tried prp first but it didn’t work so well.

just curious what they did and how delo is doing. whatever “they” did, i hope they got it right and delpo will comeback 100%.


Huh Says:

BTW, thanks for your good wishes Grendel!

Long Live Grendel, lol! ;)


Von Says:

Contador: Yes, corticosteroids have extremely deleterious effects if done on a long term basis. The cortisone eats away at the inflammation as well as the good/surrounding cartilage which in turn weakens the joint. It’s a catch-22 situation.

I don’t know about PRP being used for the arm and other joints, except only for the knees. Believe me if it was done on the arm I’d be first on line to have it done forthwith.

I think DelPotro has *cubital tunnel syndrome* and I can say from personal experience that surgery only seems to weaken the muscle and cause further damage to the damaged nerve. The release and/or decompression of the impinged nerves entails a very lengthy recuperation period. For that matter, surgery on a tennis player’s arm/shoulder(Sharapova’s a perfect example, and Tommy Haas is another)is helpful with respect to the discomfort and/or pain, but in the long term it only weakens the nerve and/or muscle/tendons/ligaments. Sadly, there are very few options besides surgery that’s available to those who are unfortunate enough to sustain such an injury.


margot Says:

jane: that’s exactly what I mean, difficult to “recapture that first fine careless rapture.”
I think in some ways Andy played better pre injury, he was certainly less cautious. As far as Delboy goes, the expectation here on tennisx seems very high, so what he must be experiencing in his own country, goodness only knows. There’s another suitable quote I seem to remember about destroyng what we love.
3 bothers? Must be one of the reasons why, although you take no prisoners, you remain so calm and even tempered at all times.I find it really interesting that, while I’m sure there are Walter Mitty characters on tennisx, how much of the essence of posters is revealed in their writing. BTW these comments surely show there’s not much tennis around at the mo!
And belated Happy Birthday to you huh!


grendel Says:

margot: “There’s another suitable quote I seem to remember about destroyng what we love.” Could you have had in mind Oscar Wilde’s “Each man kills the thing he loves” (or something like that) from The Ballad of Reading Gaol?

Whilst I’m on here, you obviously watch BBC tennis when it’s on, what’s your opinion of Andrew Castle? To me, he’s a disgusting slimeball who’s always trying to promote himself, and it seems obvious to me that the BBC are “grooming” him to replace John Barret who was himself selected to take over from the great Dan Maskell. What a sorry descent. Maskell loved tennis, it was his life, and he kept his comments to a minimum. And then, that “ooh, I say, what a shot!” whilst comical was absolutely genuine, after 50 years in the game, playing, coaching and commentating, Maskell still came across as somebody who could watch a tennis match as if it was a source of wonder which he had only just discovered. The oily Castle, on the other hand, with his ludicrous name dropping,drips in your face as someone trying to impress. How could the Beeb get it so wrong?

b.t.w, that was quite a rant, feel free to disagree. Maybe there are hidden virtues in this preposterous Castle man which I have been unable to detect.


margot Says:

grendel: “disgusting slime ball” couldn’t have said it better myself! Did you catch it when he sais he was David Cameron’s “doubles partner”!! Now I know what homicidal rage feels like. Can’t stand john lloyd either, as you probably gathered from chat with polo, greg rusedski aaaaahhh, now you’ve got me on a rant….yes, dear old Dan, as you say, comical, dependable, quintissentially Wimbledon somehow.
could be Oscar, thought it might be Shakey or even the Smiths..


skeezerweezer Says:

So what do you all think of Bud Collins? :)

I personally like his fashion choices, put him Caddyshack and he would fit right in.

Love the guy though :)


jane Says:

huh – happy belated.

skeeze – Bud has nothing on Don Cherry in the outfit department. : ) I think it’s time for Bud to kick back and retire. But he surely loves the sport, doesn’t he?


jane Says:

margot – the Smiths. Loved em in the 80s. Did you know that there was an entire academic conference devoted to their oeuvre?


skeezerweezer Says:

@ Huh ditto here on your 21, 22?

@ Jane, Don Cherry, lol :).

I gotta a soft heart for they guy, I remember he was like “the guy” in the ’70s and ’80s and always had an interesting tennis story to tell that he researched. He turned out to be quite the Tennis Historian. I think he tried to kick back and retire “but they pulled me back in” as Pacino once said.


sar Says:

Happy B’day Huh you OLD thing. LOL

I liked the Smiths too-How Soon is Now

Margot and Grendel- How about Simon Reed? Obnoxious or not?
The only commentator I like here is JMac. The worst Doug Adler, Jimmy Arias, PMac, Brad Gilbert, I could go on and on.


skeezerweezer Says:

Von,

“Try HGH, but watch out for your falling hair. LOL.”

Hey! Great idea! Falling Hair? Don’t have much anyways, so I am not worried about that! Maybe I should just go for the shaved head look with a flaming tennis ball tattoo on top of my head. Cooooool :)


Oui Says:

Hey Vonnie:
Are you still being moderated by staff?


Huh Says:

Mrs. Margot, Mrs.Jane, Skeeze and Sar:

Thank you all for your kind and warm wishes. :)


Polo Says:

Huh, I would like to join the others who wish you a happy birthday. Late as it may be, what would you like for your birthday. I have a feeling I know what it is and I think you want to get it sometime in September.


Huh Says:

POLO:

Thanks!!! But hey hey, how did you know that I would love to have my B.Day gift around September? You’re almost right! :D
That’d be one of the best gifts that I’d have received till date, if I get it, that is, no matter who gives me! ;)

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