Federer v. Djokovic, Who’s the Pick? Women’s SFs at Australian Open
by Sean Randall | January 26th, 2011
  • 338 Comments

In the wee hours of the morning Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic will contest the first Australian Open men’s semifinal. The meeting between the two top names in tennis is their 20th edition, and it’s Federer who has the decisive lead 13-6. Federer also won their last three meetings surrendering just one single set.

However, in their most recent Grand Slam showdown it was Djokovic saving two match points in a 5-set thriller at the US Open in the semifinals.

This time around coming into the match Djokovic is a far better player of the two, and it’s a different situation.

“The US Open was a close match,” Federer said. “I think I had two match points. I’m not sure how many I had. Maybe three. I guess I should have won really. I mean, I was playing good enough to win. But I was a bit confused mentally maybe, you know, because we played the second session, it was a back to back with the was Super Saturday, which I’m not a huge fan of. Maybe I just felt like I have to get out of this match as quick as I could to save energy to play Rafa the next day. I think it ended up hurting me losing the match at the end. It was unfortunate. Novak and myself both played a good match. In the end, it was a shot here and there. He whacked those forehands in the corners the way he had to to get around, turn the match around.”

At the start of the event I picked Federer to beat Djokovic at this very stage. But that was then, this is now.

Federer’s back in the semifinals (hit 8th Australian Open I read) but en route this year he escaped Gilles Simon, sleepwalked through multiple breaks against Xavier Malisse, dropped a set to Tommy Robredo before essentially given a pass by his friend Stan Wawrinka.

By contrast, Djokovic has sliced through the field losing just a single set, that 10-8 in a tiebreak to Ivan Dodig. In his last two matches he belted Nicolas Almagro and Tomas Berdych. Djokovic also seems to have his faulty serve under control.

Said Djokovic of playing Roger, “I always try to win against him. No question about that. I’ve won against him in different occasions, mostly on the hardcourts. So as I said, this is the chance that I can use. But as I said, very close matches. The winner of the matches, you know, gets away with couple points here and there. On this level, this is what happens. All that said, I have to stick my pick of Federer, however I have been more impressed by the game of focus of Djokovic.”

Federer has looked shaky but in a double revenge match – Djokovic beat him at the US Open and at the Australian Open in this round in 2008 – so I have to think Federer will bring his best stuff tonight.

For me, the key will be the serve. Because both players are so efficient off the ground, the two serves will end up as the difference. As I said, Novak’s been serving great – only broken four times – while Federer has had some bad patches. And I think tonight the Swiss will again donate a few breaks.

But in the end I like Federer in five. With Nadal out the importance of the match increases that much more and I just think Federer still handles these situations better than just about anybody else.

As for the two women’s semifinals. Both are really close match to call. Li Na and Caroline Wozniacki are about to take the court and I give Wozniacki the slight edge on paper. I also favor Clijsters but I’m going to reverse course and pick two upsets, Li Na and Zvonareva!

Wozniacki is just far too defensive and I think Clisters has looked just a little wobbly. And she’s never won in Melbourne before. Plus, Vera’s due. She’s been quick around the court, hitting with power and keeping her emotions in check.

Looking ahead to tomorrow night, like most of us picked Andy Murray will meet a Spaniard in the semifinals, just not the Spaniard we thought. I’ll have more tomorrow but I liked Murray over Nadal so there’s no reason not to pick him to beat Ferrer. It’s still a tough match, though.

Rod Laver Arena 11:00 AM Start Time
Not Before:1:30 PM
Caroline Wozniacki (DEN)[1] v. Na Li (CHN)[9]
Kim Clijsters (BEL)[3] v. Vera Zvonareva (RUS)[2]

Rod Laver Arena 7:30 PM Start Time
Novak Djokovic (SRB)[3] v. Roger Federer (SUI)[2]


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338 Comments for Federer v. Djokovic, Who’s the Pick? Women’s SFs at Australian Open

steve-o Says:

C’mon Roger!


Skeezerweezer Says:

Go Fed! Novak has the best return in the game, and probably the best hard courter next to Fed ( Murray is no slouch either ). Novak had a well earned victory at USO, time for revenge ?


Kimberly Says:

Come on na li! Pull it together.


stu Says:

So much hype around this match. I wonder if it will live up to it. No injuries, long walkabouts or off-days please!


Kimberly Says:

Skeez, you better watch out! I am rooting for federer and it seems I have been jinxing every football team, basketball team, andnsoccer team that I cheer on. I am rooting for na li, Vera and fed.


Kimmi Says:

sean, your Li Na prediction is gone out of the window i think.

does not bode well with your other predictions today

definetly a jinx


skeezerweezer Says:

kimberly…

no……!!!! However…all is fair as I rooted for Rafa to beat Ferrer…:(.
Actually, you know I want Fed to win, but this is the best AO ever. So many developing stories. Rafa Slam ( Sorry K :( ) Murray and Novak playing destroyer tennis along with Fed…some killer tennis coming up I hope….not the same without Rafa there though….

Na li is a nice root, although I like Kim cause she is a mom I guess, and she still does the splits well :), now that is a skill I will never have….


Cindy_Brady Says:

I would like to see Roger win but am picking Djokovic based on form.

If Roger is misfiring and having those patches of unforced errors it could be a long evening for him.


contador Says:

ah no. another into net. li na is not on her game.

picked woz to win the trophy. might have picked a winner, after all.

can’t stand the skirt but that’s not the point. it’s working for her.

left a message of condolence on the bracket to you Kimberly. go daveed!


dAri Says:

Like this last few games! Li becoming more of woz style and caro trying to be more aggressive and making a few errors herself!


contador Says:

skeezer….doing the splits, lol….shamooon!

cheering against my pick!!! go li na


Kimmi Says:

ah, too many threads.

Li better hold her serve here


Kimberly Says:

Skeezer, believe it or not I can do the splits! That’s about it all though.

I guess I’m a traditionalist so I can’t help myself butnpull for fed. Although this is not a good thing of recent as I am a worsenjinxer than Sean Randall!,,, maybe not though? Li na coming back?


Kimberly Says:

Contador, my ipad lost the link to touneytopia and my bracket and spirits very low! I will check when i go to hard computer. Tha k you to you ajd dare and skeez and all the other non rafa fans whonwere so nice.

Mynhusband says if it is torn hamstring he will be outbthree months at least. I sure hope not! I promised my son we would go see him in Miami!


Kimberly Says:

What a game!


Kimmi Says:

DF..unbelivable!

Li saved a match point too…

hope she can keep it up


dAri Says:

Df, caro?!
Good for na to hang in that second set!
Oh this AO seen a few three setters!
I feel tense, the jet lag is bad on the emotions ;)


Kimberly Says:

Go na li or na li or whoever you are! This is at least exciting now!


Lulu Iberica Says:

Yay, BPs for Li!


Kimmi Says:

back and forth match..at least Li is playing well now.

Great serving to hold in that game

Now go break her


Kimmi Says:

was the the first slice in the match…


Kimmi Says:

LORD! if Li hold here…

C`mon…


Kimberly Says:

Keep it up li na!


Kimberly Says:

Hold hold hold


Lulu Iberica Says:

Do not give this back!


Eric Says:

Li is really playing well, but Woz has also seen her level drop. Too many DFs on important points. It seems like Li is going to escape with the win here, despite twice being down a break in the second set and having to save match point…


jane Says:

For the first time it seems shenhas a viable lead. Crazy amount of breaks. I was writing on the other thread…but see all of you live commentators are here!


Kimmi Says:

so tense shots…c`mooon


Kimmi Says:

break back point…how difficult is it to hold..


jane Says:

Insane…


skeezerweezer Says:

@kimberly,

Your hub is right. Also, if it was torn he would have retired, torn is “can’t move” and “down for the count”. I know he is a beast but I know torn Hammys. Unc ton said 30 days, so sounds pulled. He should recover quicker but with the strenuous year he’s had and success I say take all the time he needs and some extra. When he paced himself well with FO, Wimby and USO he has laid the train track for success for him. No need to push things, he is a padawan still….best of recovery Rafa…..


Lulu Iberica Says:

These two are both getting on my nerves at the mo! Can’t close it out.


Eric Says:

Does Li even know how do an overhead?


skeezerweezer Says:

Kimberly can do the splits? As contador says….Shammmmon! Impressive. Who needs Rafa or Fed as a fav if you yourself can do the splits? Can they? Hee Heee! Ya know it!


Kimberly Says:

Point fornwoz to go four all. Grrrrrrr


Gannu Says:

Soi have bunke office to watch my feddy bear ;-)o all fed fans there? madmax (i need u to encourage me!!!! ;-)), huh, skeez, kimmi, kimo,daniel, contadoretc

on a side note .. wozniacki is a horrible o 1… hope Li Na wins this third set… woznicki has no game.. jus keeps running/chasing balls down… Love the agressor Li Na..


dAri Says:

Close call its in na!


Kimmi Says:

epic!! C`mon Li. Serve it out!


Lulu Iberica Says:

Please, please, serve this out, Li Na!


dAri Says:

Whoa! Hang tight folks, see if li na can hold!


Kimberly Says:

Can li na serve out!!

I hope so!

Yes i can do splits. I don’t think rafa can. But Novak can.


skeezerweezer Says:

@gannu

:( I cannot do the night watch for Fed, so it is up to you. You can do it, cheer on and have fun!

:)

Li Na? you go girl!


Eric Says:

Even if Li can’t hold Woz will no doubt crack in her service game again… lolz


Kimberly Says:

So tense


Kimberly Says:

Match point, can she do it?


Kimmi Says:

match point…wwoooooooooooooo

Li saved one, can woz save it too


contador Says:

Kimbery- must be rare two ppl make the exact observations watching a match but my take: but i’d be very surprised if it was a bad enough injury… if the injury was to the hamstring to require 3 months. i watched rafa in detail last night. he was moving too well for that….granted, not moving as he usually would. so something was wrong. but a badly torn hamstring and he would have at the very least been limping, likely not been able to continue. rafa was sweating profusely like he did in an earlier matches…forget which ones. anyway that 1st set 23 minute game was a battle played at a very high level of tennis ….great tennis and just when i was settling in for a whole match like that with rafa winning in the end too. rafa still had the movement to likely win a lesser player but ferrer came out to fight and pushed rafa past what any player previously had in his draw in that 1st set. i think rafa might have thought he was okay and told the media so after beating cilic, who had just survived isner. but in reality rafa didn’t know and none of us could tell for sure what his form was until that match….it’s history now. as i said on tourneytopia to you, “on to IW.” maybe he’ll take it easy and save up for an assault on clay court season again. but i hope he will be good to go sooner, as i have been invited to IW…and hope to at least see rafa practicing…there for the first week only but you know how i love the 1st weeks….gulbis will likely still be in a 1st round, : )

meanwhile this has turned into another great match!! woz v li

li na serving for match!! go li na!

YaY…..li na!!! great fighter!


Kimmi Says:

YAY! woz needs to be aggressive! or else she wont win!

What a come back! Congrats to Li Na


Lulu Iberica Says:

Yes, yes, yes! Li Na rewarded, pretender denied another chance at a major!


jane Says:

50 unforced errors but Na Li wins! Congrats to her for the win.


Kimberly Says:

YES!!!!!!!!!!!


dAri Says:

Yayyy! So happy for li na! She has all the chance for the title, no matter who is on the other side!
Sorry caro couldn’t come thru for another chance at her first major.
Way to go, Li! Great for her China, too! This is the Asia/pacific slam after all.


Ty Says:

Dare I say… women’s tennis > men’s tennis this tournament…. nah couldn’t be.


Kimmi Says:

LOL. Li is soo funny!


Gannu Says:

That was an awesome interview by Li na.. Well done and very well deserved winner


Kimberly Says:

I hope na li and ferrer win the tourney. Wouldn’t that be a riot!

Ok fed fans, relax, someone I wanted won. Maybe my jinxing ended with rafa and the entire NFL.


Kimmi Says:

Sean you are good…Li Na was not the jinx after all..

Hope you get all of them right..except Kim losing to Vera ofcourse!


Kimberly Says:

I hope it’s not serious. I intend to see rafa and his hot bod in Miami. And my five year old is counting on it. I pulled a hamstring about two years ago, took about a month but played through it. Granted I’m not exactly at their level.

Now go Vera! But realistically Kim should take this.


Michael Says:

This one Federer Vs Djokovic is a tight call. Whoever wins this has very good chances of taking the trophy. If Federer plays to his level, Djokovic stands no chance even if he plays his best. But if there is a dip in Federer level (which is possible) then Djokovic can definitely fancy his chances. My prediction would be Federer in straight sets or Djokovic winning in five sets. I cannot see a middle ground here.


jane Says:

I cannot stay up for Kim nor Fed/Nole. Can’t peek at scores either, as have super early busy day tomorrow. : /

My gut tells me Kim and Fed will win.


Michael Says:

If Federer reaches the final, then Murray if he does get through Federer, will have his hand full. He has some mental block against Federer in grand slams and Federer will always hope to turn the match around even if Murray is ahead in the match may be even on a match point as it will be an extremely nervous Murray. If Federer Vs Murray final gets repeated then my prediction would be that Federer will hold all the aces. Although I would like Murray to win his first grand slam yet if it is Federer who is in the other side of the ring, then his chances just get dimmer. However, on the other hand, if it is Djokovic then things will be much different.


Michael Says:

Will it be sexy Seventeen for Federer ? Much depend on the outcome today.


Lulu Iberica Says:

Caroline is not only too passive, but from my observations, rather chokey in tight matches. If she knows her opponent is well below her level, she’s OK, but if the opponent is near her level, she’ll blow her lead. That’s why I say if Schiavone hadn’t started missing left and right, Caro would’ve gone down in the quarters.


jane Says:

Oops forgot to write Vera. She may have a chance, but i think Kim will prevail, like at the USO.

Enjoy the matches for those of you who can!


dAri Says:

Here we go! Go kimmmm!


Michael Says:

Caroline just doesn’t deserve to be World No.1. it is quite simple. She just doesn’t have the game to be even in the top ten.


dAri Says:

Sexy seventeen! Would love it michael! Let’s get through tonight.


Skeezerweezer Says:

Kimberly,

I have more important needs than you , as i have already booked to stay at IW, so Rafa, get well, want to see that awesome buggy whip FH. :)

Li Na, I love u. Love bringin the global flavor to womens tennis. Honest, funny, and good stuff off the hip in post on court interview.

Question for the posters, is it me or is or.

Woz seems like a candleholder rather than the candle when it comes to the top woman in womens tennis? Ladies? Is that a bad thing to say?


Michael Says:

My gut feeling tells me that Murray will have problems even against Ferrer in the semi-final simply because the pressure is too much on him this time around just as he saw the back of Nadal in yesterday’s match against Ferrer. It should have definitely come as a booster for Murray since Nadal is not around, but he simply cannot under estimate Ferrer. Ferrer has all the abilities to surprise Murray.


Lulu Iberica Says:

Kimberly, I’m jealous that you get to see Rafa so soon! Also, since you have a 5 yr old, you can probably get an autograph! The one time I was going to see Rafa, it was 2009 Roland Garros, and I saw Soda instead :( I’m planning to go to this year’s USO in early rounds. Maybe I’ll see him practicing…


Kimberly Says:

Li na has a great game. Can’t sleep. Thankfully slept all last night.

Skeez, I’ve heard that IW is a beautiful tournament. But our Miami is called the fifth slam! Mu gutnsays rafa willnshow at both. He’s a tennis junkie fornbetter or worse.


Kimberly Says:

My favorite matches are actually on the outer courts where youngest just a few feet from the almagors and belluccis.

Got to watch rafa practice. He was hitting with Marc Lopez and actually doing thebgrunt during practice! I’m hoping forth five year olds sake we get the autograph.

Cant sleep. Too charged from na li!


Kimberly Says:

My favorite matches are actually on the outer courts where youngest just a few feet from the almagors and belluccis.

Got to watch rafa practice. He was hitting with Marc Lopez and actually doing thebgrunt during practice! I’m hoping forth five year olds sake we get the autograph.

Cant sleep. Too charged from na li!


Skeezerweezer Says:

Yeah that is what i heard about IW from my friends, that is why i decided to go. Going to the outer courts where they practice you can get real close, so that is very cool :), and you don’t have to pay for the box seats to get close to your fav. I am hopeful to get a couple of “unique” photos for WTF! network, on assignment of course…:)


dAri Says:

Yes, kimmie takes it. Not nearly exciting as li/woz, but Kim playing much better tennis today


Kimmi Says:

wow! Kim is hitting the ball sooo well today. hope she keeps it up!


Kimmi Says:

dari – looks like kim knows her opponent today is dangerous. so she came all prepared. raising her game as the match goes!

she is not the kim we saw against radwanska.

The only thing is, she is known to go through some concentration lapses. hope not today!


dAri Says:

On the other hand, I’m hardly even noticing that Vera is in the match at all!
Well there is the winner from her, but it has the feel of a very good hitting partner is across the net and kimmi is doing her thing…
Ok better for Vera!


dAri Says:

Gonna take a nap before the fed/novak match.
Kim has the breakshe should be able to close out in her present form!
Go,Kim, go!
Get it, Rog!


Lulu Iberica Says:

When Kim is on her game, she is just too good for Vera.


Lulu Iberica Says:

If Kim retires again, or gets knocked out in an earlier round, Vera could get a slam.


Farley Says:

For your all, congtrats Fed for defending the trophy, the rest are nothing.


Kimmi Says:

i hope kim kis not gona let vera come back

these women matches have been crazy so far

go kim


dAri Says:

Yeah! Nice match point for Kim!


Kimmi Says:

WOW! that was easy!

Congrats Kim. Na Li is very nice girl. so let the best wife wins!


Lulu Iberica Says:

Well, at least Vera didn’t break down or anything. Sorry, Vera. Hang in there, maybe one of these you’ll catch a break and pull off a slam.


Lulu Iberica Says:

Ok, good night all. I know I’m missing the main event. Adje Nole! I’ll be rooting for you in my dreams!


Kimmi Says:

well..next match. Go Rog

have to sleep, hopeful i can wake up to watch the boys…


Dory Says:

The great Roger Federer will win of course though my heart is split in two when choosing between him and dear Nole.


Dory Says:

I will be very happy for whoever wins the title. Murray winning=happy, Nole winning=delighted and very happy, Federer=euphoric happy.


tennis2011 Says:

Roger versus Novak will be a classic match that I can promise you right now. I do not get into the whole prediction thing, but if had to make one it would be Federer in 5 hard fought sets. Most experts were predicting a Murray vs Federer final so I don’t know what the big deal is about Nadal losing if Murray was probably going to beat him anyways. I actually liked Murray’s chances against Nadal more than his chances against Ferrer because Ferrer shots will not sit up for Murray like Nadal’s would. Rafa has a mental block against Murray in outdoor slam matches as he is 0-2 against him and only won one set out of six. The two best hardcourt players in the world I think are Federer and Murray, but Djokovic is right there as well as Nadal when healthy. If Roger can beat Novak and Andy in consecutive matches at his age it will be remarkable to say the least. It will be extremely tough though in my opinion.


thark Says:

wake up nappers! it’s time :)

feeling mixed about this one. would love to see nole get another slam but i hate watching fed lose – i don’t know if i can take a repeat of the USO.

just hope it’s a good match i guess…

let’s go guys – game on!


Rick Says:

Thanks for Sean for picking Federina! So he could jinx him again! Djokovic in 4 sets! And if Federer gets into the final, he would gets beaten by Murray. If Ferrer gets into the final. Federina would wins for sure. This could be Andy Murray’s first Grand Slam! Anyone should wins, except Federina. Whenever Rafa is hurt or beaten, he wins! Federina wasn’t so impress in this tournament. And Djokovic was really kicking Berdych’s arse the other day! Federina would gets beaten if it goes to five sets. He would chokes like he did last match against Djokovic at the US Open.


Rick Says:

It wouldn’t suprise me, if Federina gets beaten easily. Because although, he won like 10 matches this year. But Federina hasn’t played guys like Nadal(which he did in an exhibition tournament, and get beaten. It is a bad choice for Nadal playing all these double and exhibition matches. Not only tiring himself. And those stupid exhibition matches also did helped Federina to understand Nadal’s games better. And the fear factor would be gone. Nadal is a better player, but he is too stupid to fell for Federina’s trap), Djokovic or Murray. So what’s so impressive with his wins???


Daniel Says:

Fed attack Djoko second serve on BP and Djoko scape putting the racket on the ball, the ball landed colse to the baseline neutralizing Fed attack and Djoko was back on the rally. Very importanto oppening game by Djoko.


Daniel Says:

Nole is in excelent form. Apart from the 2 DF in game one, he made no Unforce Errors to my eyes.


Gannu Says:

Rick the dirty shit^y mouth – you have opened it nowand its stinking,…. Uare in for a rude shock by the end of this match… keep dreaming…


Daniel Says:

Nole didn’t miss a point on first serve.


stu Says:

great aggressive match. no unnecessarily long rallies…


van orten Says:

you see from the start intensity all written over !!!!


thark Says:

nole is hating those droppers…


Daniel Says:

Djo still didn’t miss a point on first serve, 13-13.
FEd using drops, which eventually will irritate Djoko and force him using some as well, pride thing. I bet.


Kimmi Says:

wow, strong serving by djoko


stu Says:

if novak’s serve drops in level i think he’s in trouble..or if federer gets wise to them because he is winning a lot of points with well-placed serves..


stu Says:

Where is everyone? Apart from those of us in N. America, everyone should be here!


Daniel Says:

16-16 on first serve. I am totally amazed by this!


Daniel Says:

Finally Fed wins a point in Djoko first serve, Ufh!


stu Says:

roger’s pummeling his second serve tho..

anyone notice the bouncing is back?!


Kimo Says:

stu, what do you mean “the bouncing”?


stu Says:

ball bouncing – before Novak serves…


Daniel Says:

Fed did not like this missede forehand.


Kimmi Says:

crunch time in set 1. phew!


van orten Says:

fed almost all the points on his racquet so far!!!! too many mistakes…djoker is tight …he knows that he is the match as long as fed doesnt turn on his forehand!!1


Daniel Says:

Djoko strugle to close his game and Fed wins it in minute. Pressure time!


Daniel Says:

Fed is missing forehand passing shots, ah?! Djoko is playing with fire aproaching the net into Fed’s forehand.


stu Says:

nice of Ana to show her support. pretties up the stands too…


Kimmi Says:

djoko first to reach the tie break, fed better join him..

thi match is toooooo clooooose


stu Says:

Novak is playing well, just a bit nervous. Winning the first set will really help…


Rick Says:

Djokovic and Murray has a good chance winning this! They are better players this year!


Daniel Says:

It will be Fed’s first tiebreak this AO.


stu Says:

roger’s winning this tiebreak, too many nerves from nole


thark Says:

wow – fed playing inspired tennis when it counts that game…


stu Says:

why are the atdhe commentators saying novak will fold if he loses the tb? have they even been watching this guy lately?!!


Kimmi Says:

Oh noo…c`mon fed


Daniel Says:

Fed is too passive for his standard. He has 2 forehands and he did nothing with the ball. Fed is waiting Djoko to miss backhands, nut it ain’t happening.


Kimmi Says:

fed needs to get his next point, then put pressure on djoko


Daniel Says:

Djoko is taking control of almost all points, not good at all. He better change tactics in set 2.


Kimmi Says:

wow..2 mini break

fed in trouble


stu Says:

yes, YES!!!!!!!!


van orten Says:

this was the worst tie- breaker i ever saw federer play…god so passive and yet so many errors!!!!


stu Says:

am i the only Nole supporter here?


Kimmi Says:

no first serves..aaagh

and to the net..wow!

djoko with first set..great set but poor tie break by fed, c`mon fed!


Daniel Says:

Fec is playing so passive than when he tries to be agressive he miss. Plus he served poorly in the TB. Latelly he is losing too many TB for my taste.
The match is living up to the hype.


stu Says:

yeah the Fed really underperformed that TB…Nole was too good on his own serve, but Fed didn’t match that level on his…


van orten Says:

the most passive performance by fed since wimbledon…clearly not the same fed …and clearly giving momentum without need to djoker


Gannu Says:

Well Djoko deserves th firstset.. hist shots had more sting and he was more aggressive… lets see whether fedex brings back the champion within him…


Aravind Says:

Excellent first set by both players. Djokovic taking it to Federer in the tiebreak. When he is ripping off both sides, he is a beast! It will be interesting to see if Djokovic can maintain this level throughout the match. He is playing amazing first strike tennis.. Federer playing the percentages more


Daniel Says:

Djoko’s backhand when Fed tries to open the court is excelent.


van orten Says:

he deserved the first set because he played like always…and was consistent with first serve..but federer does so many free points for him..its painful to watch!!!


stu Says:

brilliant angled low volley


van orten Says:

fed needs one incredible point to pump himself up a bit…c´mon wake up…nole already fist pumping almost everypoint he wins!!!


thark Says:

wow nole channeling muzza to get that angle after chasing the dropper…


stu Says:

absolutely agree with your viewpoint, Aravind. plus, Federer has a few more levels that he can get to, but I think Nole is playing close to his best level…


Daniel Says:

Well, Djoko’s level is just too good today. Everything Fed is trowing at him he return. Fed will need to use experience and wait Djoko’s levbel to drop or a bad game.


Kimmi Says:

ESPN commentator think fed is dommed…hmmm! not a good sign


Daniel Says:

To me Djoko is at his best. He is not missing anything, only when Fed pushes him to the limits.
Serving great, returnin great…


Kimmi Says:

time for me to stop watching..maybe just record. cant watch federer losing…aaaaagh!


van orten Says:

fed askin for the trainer!!! he is slow as hell…zero footwork!!!somethings wrong


stu Says:

this is still the momentum from winning the tiebreak.

it could still be too early in the set for a break. we’ll see


Daniel Says:

Fed first serve is not saving him also. Well the way it is, he needs to hand ang wait for his chances, and try to shorten the points.
Let’s see if Djoko holds to consolidate the break.


van orten Says:

his body language is bad!!look at djoker full of confidence and lust to pump his fist and screammmm


van orten Says:

but we knew that before the match…if feds is not able to shorten points and be agressive as he likes to it will be impossible thanks to the baseline consistency of djoker..would be the same vs murray or nadal …so c mon fed…


Aravind Says:

Guys, this is not a Nadal/Murray kind of game that Djokovic is playing. He is playing extremely aggressively and so far everything is going in! Federer can just hope to hang on here and hope that Djoker’s level will drop.
He has a wonderful record against power hitters, but Djoker is a classy player.

Federer just gets back the break..


Daniel Says:

Well, Djoko got tigh, nerves showed up, 4 unforced errors and Fed playing with a lot of slices. He played even more passive and it worked. Go figure?!


stu Says:

see? told ya that break was nothing to worry about, fed fans!


Daniel Says:

Well, turn of events. Let’s see how Djoko will behave in his next service game.
The match now has those shifts and more drama.


van orten Says:

hitting through the ball might help or better said it already helped him last couple of games…


Aravind Says:

Dont’ worry Fed fans. He will not go down without a fight. If he does lose, it will be because Djokovic will have played an extraordinary match.

Djokovic has relatively less pressure, so he has been able to swing freely so far. After the break, he had something to lose and at the first sign of pressure, he was tentative and errors started creeping. This is a good sign for Federer..


van orten Says:

yeah of course djoker is more agressive than nadal and murray but has the same consistency from the baseline if on!!!


Daniel Says:

Now Fed is confiant!


thark Says:

wow – tmf in the house…


stu Says:

i think roger’s just getting a better read on his first serve…


Daniel Says:

Djoko got tired in the point.


Aravind Says:

Break to Federer with the point of the match.. That was an INSANE point.. Djokovic won the point three times only for Federer to somehow get the ball back into play!!!! TMF on court now :)


stu Says:

Novak not doing enough on breakpoint there, lots of missed opportunities…


Daniel Says:

Fed needs to serve big.


Daniel Says:

Wow, what a backhand. BP, crucial point in the set. ACEEEE


Daniel Says:

Damm, Fed trow Djoko in the floor. Short and a lobby, this a tennis player hate!


stu Says:

if i wasnt rooting so hard for nole i think id be enjoying this match a lot more. excellent tennis


Daniel Says:

Djoko’s return is too good, Fed doesn’t get 2 free points in a row.

Djoko must be pissed the hell of with this drops!


stu Says:

seriously, where is everyone? this is the semifinal of a Slam, tennis fans!


Aravind Says:

Djokovic throws everything on Federer, who just holds on. Djoker has to win this match in straights or in maximum four sets. He is expending too much energy early in the match here. Federer looks a little irritated, but as fresh as a daisy.


van orten Says:

tight game..very important to come through…djoker has an incredible read of serve today..amazing


stu Says:

djokovic dropped his level just a touch here, but you dont do that against TMF


stu Says:

what, are you saying goodbye to the set right here, right now at 5-2?


van orten Says:

21 to 12 winners !!! fed is putting his foot on the gas pedal now


Daniel Says:

No Fed, 2 points which Djoko got lucky with defensive balls going in..


stu Says:

5:3, 0:30 let’s GO Novak!


Daniel Says:

Can’t believe that he made this drop. Djoko was to close to him for that shot. He just needed another forehand on that corner!
Djoko back in the match, momentum shift, again.


Daniel Says:

Back in the set, he was always in the match!:)


van orten Says:

oh my goddddd
federer is really the master of his own fate…how many mistakes ..incredible…no first serve at alll…an dropshot to the forehand side no need at all,…djoker is back


Kimo Says:

I’m at work stu. There’s no other reason not to be watching a Fed-Nole match!!!

TBH, I’m not too worried about my Fed. From your comments is sound like Novak is playing the kind of tennis that would beat anybody, i.e. anybody but Fed at his highest level, which he seems to be finding. Plus, Novak tends to run himself ragged against Fed early on. Let’s see if he can hold this up for longer, which I doubt.


Daniel Says:

Told ya that he would try drops, missed 2 already! The drops are in his mind.


van orten Says:

it is typical ..people saying djoker is agressive and the only thing he is doing practically is keeping the ball in play…fed is just too looseeeee,…..show some crawls man…its painful to watch i already said that,.,but it is


thark Says:

man fed is shanking so many bh off the frame…


stu Says:

Agree, Kimo…that’s my worry about Novak too…he started at his top level, and it’s starting to drop now. Fed on the other hand is reading everything right and thinking better


Daniel Says:

If Fed lose this game, it will be disaster! Afetr being 5-2 and lose 7-5.


Daniel Says:

FEd’s new serve works agaisnt most players, against Djko he needs some ace bombs, trouble asgain!


Daniel Says:

3 forehand errors long. Bye match.


thark Says:

idk guys, i know there is some precedent for nole dropping form but i haven’t seen any indicator of that so far – he is playing like a monster.


van orten Says:

it is just not possible to hold serve without 1st serve…and federer is doin all he can to help djoker win the match…it is not possible to hit only dream winners all the time…no first serve no victory…it is really poor what federer is doin..keeps missing!!!46 % first serve no way he ll win this !!!


Aravind Says:

On basis of the first week, I had predicted it would be a Nole-Murray final. Looks like it is gonna be the case.

I am a big fan of Federer BTW


Daniel Says:

No serve to dave him. HE is not getting any free points on his serve. Fed is not used to this. Everytime the return makes him play all serves he misses, as if he gets tired in the game.
Well only thing that can save Fed is if Djoko feelsz the pressure again, and even so they will go to a TB.


stu Says:

yeah thark, it depends so much on momentum. it does look like he’s back, but in between the momentum had shifted federer’s way. it should shift again in a second…


van orten Says:

bye bye roger…it was meant to be…a new champion maybe def. a new era now that even rafa lost though due to injury…but what federer is showing here is a disgrace…he produced 8 unforced errors the last 8 points!!!!!!!!!!!!


Aravind Says:

Guys, Djokovic is playing amazing today. Let us applaud his effort. Watch out for Djokovic in the clay season. He is going to give Nadal a run for his money.. Trust me on this.


stu Says:

PHENOMENAL from Novak. Bravo.


Daniel Says:

That’s it. Unbelievable that after Fed won 4 games, 5-2 and he loses 5 in a row.
Fed needs serve and Djoko to crack, only way.


stu Says:

still one more set to go, guys…


Thomas Says:

disgraceful performance by federer.


Daniel Says:

It’s odd, Fed had problems in round2, round 4 and now round 6 (semis).:)


Maso Says:

Wow, Novak is absolutely kicking ass. Still rooting for Roger, but it wouldn’t disturb me in the least if Nole went on to win this AO. Maybe we might finally get a Murray/Djoko GS final!!


van orten Says:

what pisses me ooff already is that everyone will say djoker played tooooo gooodddd blah blah and it is so obvious that federer is absolutly offffff..not present not fresh not anything..he is just not the same today..but noone will mention this …not the same when rafa loses…then zero credit to the opponent but to the bad performance of rafa…djoker plays good yeah but both sets were for federer to lose and he did deliver


Thomas Says:

Fed has to come back from 2 sets to love down against a younger opponent with more spring in his legs. Can he do it? I doubt it,but nothing is impossible.


dAri Says:

Stay in, Roger. It’s not over


Kimo Says:

If djoko is playing like you guys describe then by all means he deserves this match.


Cindy_Brady Says:

As I predicted, straight sets for Djokovic.

Sorry Fed fans, he is being over powered by a better player at the moment.

Maybe even looking a bit tired and old.

Lulz.


Kimo Says:

I’m not counting Fed out just yet though :)


thark Says:

if nole takes this i’m rooting for him to go all the way – true nole fans have been very patient the last couple years…


Aravind Says:

It will be good for the men’s game to have a new grandslam champion. Novak has class in spades, he has just not been able to channel his mental energy in the right manner so far. This could be a watershed moment for him.


van orten Says:

better player yes he is today that is why he is winning 2:0 ..but federer even playing not so good had it on his racquet..what shows the immense quality player he is and why he has achieved so much…but it is just aweful losing like that…it is better to lose playing badly 6:3 6:2 …but not like this !!!!


Daniel Says:

Well, nothing is working for the Fed. He missed a forenad last point and now Djoko come with this shot. It was a game Fed was going for broke.


thark Says:

of course now that i look at my last comment, i suppose muzza fans have been patient for umm… forever ;)

and i hope ferrer has a few fans around here – he deserves some support no doubt.

but in the meantime – let’s go fed give us a match!


stu Says:

van orten, the opponent needs some credit here.


Daniel Says:

Fed has so bad luck that even bad calls his having now. That point could be break of serve, now adv djoko.


Jeaninho Says:

I think Fed is struggling with the pace, given that this is basically his first night match.


Kimo Says:

Look, fellow Fed fans, our guy always played Djoko tough and often beat him with the slimmest of margins. The difference between these two was never big to begin with, and when one is not on top of his game, as Fed seems to be today, it’s only natural that the other guy would win, also by the slimmest of margins.


stu Says:

Daniel, I think that point would have been Novak’s anyway coz it did return it with a lot of pace and Fed wouldn’t be able to send it back…


Daniel Says:

What a forehand by Djoko, Fed oppened the court and he returned great.


Daniel Says:

I don’t hink so Stu. Djoko was out of the court and Fed was already in the backhand corner.

What an angle by Djoko. He is very patient waiting for the right shot to go for the winner.


stu Says:

Novak is firing from both wings but I feel like his footspeed is just SLIGHTLY lacking…maybe its because the last match I watched was Muzz-Dolgo LOL


van orten Says:

people there is nothing more to write about…mean everyone can see it!! he has so many chances,…even perfect first serve what fed is failing to do or stupid passivity or mistake


van orten Says:

i bet he gets broken now!!! typical fed display would that be !!!


Daniel Says:

Djoko is hammering Fed’s backhand as long we seen, not even Murray can do this’. Djoko doesn’t allow FEd to hit his forehand stand, always on the runnuing.


van orten Says:

is so predictable when he plays like this federer !!!!


Kimmi Says:

oh nooo 15-40

federer is really dommed.


van orten Says:

come on !!!!


Daniel Says:

I heard a c’mom. He is still fighting.


van orten Says:

i counted 10 backhand frame mishits …impossible performance…


Daniel Says:

But there is nothing he can do, another sprayed BH.


Kimmi Says:

was that a shank…i m listening to ao radio….breaks! wow!

thats it….i m afraid


van orten Says:

come on…not even the biggest nole fan would have dreamed of such a painful performance by fed!!!


stu Says:

Nole’s playing a really smart match, serving great, returning even better and really going for it on the groundies. This really is an excellent match. Sure Federer could probably play better, but playing like this he would have beaten anyone else.


Daniel Says:

van orten, I surrender. Fed is done by this match, Djopkomis too good, but Fed had a lot of chances, inlcuding the first game of the match, which would change everything I think.

Well, seems this year we could really see the move of the young ones. This AO would be crucial by Fed if he wants to be n. 1 again. And he was in such a great run, with 15 matches in a row.

Grendel was right, he poeaked to soon in Doha.


van orten Says:

but this is typical federer that cost him so many matches in the past…not taking his break chances and getting broken right away after failing to convert!!!how many times we seen that vs nadal already now it is djoker !!! just poor!!!and stubborn to his tactics..no adjustment at all


Jeaninho Says:

Federer needs to do a Houdini-stunt now. Shall we pary?


Jeaninho Says:

pary = pray


Daniel Says:

Awfull shot! J, he could at leats make deuce. This was a shot of someone with no bleieve at all.


Cindy_Brady Says:

God, Fed fans are so arrogant and obnoxious.

They never give his opponents credit for finding ways of beating him. Djokovic is hitting heavier and playing more consistent. He if forcing Fed into errors and tiring him out.

Good grief


Gannu Says:

Federer just a mere shadow of himself… who is this imposter called roger federer playing against djokovic.. deserve sto lose to bring his C- game.. feel bad but such is estiny… atleast fight and take one set federer???


Kimmi Says:

is federer going to lose in straight..that will be the worst lose for him

well, he lost to soderling at french in straight too…aaagh!

must be the slow conditions at night maybe!


Jeaninho Says:

Cindy are you by any chance related to Ian Brady (of the Ian Brady – Myra Hindley duo). Please dont kill me…………..eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee…………..


Gannu Says:

No kimmi he lost to soderling in 4 sets!!!!


van orten Says:

he leads 5:4 serving for the set…gets broken twice in row!!!now he had multiple breakpoints …gets broken right away…
like in the us open semi final..why has this always be such a drama!!!


Ike Says:

good positive tennis from Nole!
Winners-Unforced errors is just -5 so far …


Cindy_Brady Says:

Kimmi,

Really, slow conditions?

I guess Djokovic’s game has nothing to do with it. Now the weather is the problem.


Ike Says:

2008 Australian Open SF
Djokovic beat Fed, 7-5, 6-3, 7-6(5)

looks like this one is going to be similar win for him


van orten Says:

in the end you can tell that the two unforced errors at 5:4 to 0:30 cost him everything…


Jeaninho Says:

Do I detect animosity from Cindy_Brady. We will take a loss from Federer. It happens to the best of players. Rafa is constantly losing against injuries, tiredness, DAD LEAVES MOM, being illusioned, bird flu, SARS. Dont hate us Cindy


Ike Says:

i wish IBM score card showed FH & BH winners separately…


Daniel Says:

2 more shots of making the match a bit more exciting. Fed needs to at least hold. Djoko may feel the pressure when serving for the match at 5-4.


stu Says:

van orten, since you’re making up your own storyline, you might as well stop watching the match


Kimmi Says:

so, federer was serving for the second set? I stopped watching. very sad to know that..


van orten Says:

slow conditions??? he had so many chances today but could not play 2-3 points without an error…or 2-3 first serves in a row…djoker has been doin it all match long!!so he deserves the win..it is not his fault that fed is not there today!!! if federer plays like this not even super fast conditions can save him


Daniel Says:

It’s not his day. This backhand errors shows it.


stu Says:

he didnt get a chance to serve for the set. He was leading 5-2 (1 break) and Novak won serve, broke back, won serve again, broke, then won serve!


stu Says:

oops that means he did serve for it, sorry! too distracted!


Rick Says:

But Jeaninho! Federer has his mono since 2008! lol


Thomas Says:

Assuming Djokovic wins this,I feel Murray goes on to win the title.


Al Says:

Fed should hire van orten as coach. plain and obvious.


Daniel Says:

2 aces in crunch times. Djoko is noit choking.


stu Says:

clutch serving, very nice…198K and painting the line


Gannu Says:

I will give credit to djokovic for serving lights out under crunch situations.. somehow it hurts less when you know ur man is playing horrendously and the opponent plying well…atleast u know the one who truly deserved won…


stu Says:

a little bad luck there with the net cord


Daniel Says:

Wow, the net mess with Djoko now.


stu Says:

seriously guys, quit it. Fed is not playing “horrendously”.


Daniel Says:

Even so, if Fed was playing great he would not make this 2 stupid misdtakes.


Kimmi Says:

0-40 what the hell…giving away the break after a tough break sheesh


thark Says:

haha stu – nole is playing lights out and deserves credit – but fed does seem to be shanking backhands like it’s his job.


van orten Says:

hahahah djoker is just not missing any point!!!! incredible !!!!


Jeaninho Says:

I am @ work guys. What is the score


Daniel Says:

3 unforced errors. Well as much as Djoko is playing great and consistant, this Fed is clearly, C- as gannu pointed.


Kimmi Says:

oh noo!

Duro, jane and all djoko fans..congrats to your man. he was the better man today.

federer just not his day


stu Says:

yeah, Fed can’t seem to get a backhand over the net in set 3. i still maintain that he played well thru the first two sets tho…


van orten Says:

@stu fed is not playing like shit??? come on you know better…look at his last service game ..all 4 djoker points unforced errors ..all on second serve…i guess fed is very dissapointed with himself…last time i saw shank that many balls was ….


stu Says:

one more shank as we speak


thark Says:

congrats nole!

much deserved…


van orten Says:

well deserved win!!!but a pity fed delivered that performance.-..so many chances..there was no service game he didnt shank balls !!!!


stu Says:

No excuses this time. No mono. No “close match, I had matchpoints”. Just completely outplayed. With this win, Novak solidifies all those other ones.

Commiserations, Fedfans. He was pretty brilliant too, but came up short against a Novak on fire, who’s been waiting to break through for a LONG time.


Farley Says:

yesss I’m sooo happy…..


Maso Says:

Great match from Djoko, really average from Roger… Wished we could have had a longer match than this, but congratulations Nole! Hope Murray comes through and then we may have an epic final.


Daniel Says:

Congrats Djoko. Fed, live to fight another day.

Now let’s hope for a Murray x Djoko final, this 2 don’t play in a while, I think it was 2008 last time they played.

As much as it would be great for Murray to win, Djoko losing 2 straight finals would be devastating, and he beat Fed, so, he deserves the most.


Kimmi Says:

wow! what a beat down. congrats to djoko and his fans.

i was listening to the radio and commentators are commending djoko. deserving. good for him.

federer peaked too soon at doha. oh well..

Hope muzza meets djoko in the final


van orten Says:

so lets hope he can bounce back at ????maybe wimbledon because there will be not so much to get in the clay season for him if everything goes as usual


Kimmi Says:

just listening to the oncourt interview and djoko says he was 2-5 down in the second set. how did fed lose the second set after being 5-2 up..i cant understand! horrible!


van orten Says:

doha has nothing to do with that loss today kimmy!!!djoker just said it on court!!! he took his chances and winning the second set was crucial to him but not even he knows how fed could play completly without concentration when it counted


Kimmi Says:

Go Muzza! Pls get there!


aleish17 Says:

Great match between Fed and Djokovic.

Guess we have the same fate in this years AO Fed fans. sorry for the loss.

Congrats to Djokovic! He pulled it through.

Now that there’s no Rafa & Fed, I’ll be rooting for Andy Murray.

Go Murray!!!


stu Says:

hahaha he’s delirious, didn’t answer any of Courier’s questions just sort of rambled on


Ike Says:

Well don Nole!
Will be a great final, Nole vs. Andy (sorry David), I been hoping for that for last couple years…


Kimo Says:

Congrats to Djoko and all his fans. I’ll be rooting for Murray in the final for no reason other than that I think he’s waited long enough.


van orten Says:

stu??? nole outplayed him at the most crucial game at 5:4 ??? the only point he shot in that game was that passing ball to break after fed mishit that dropshot!!! djoker played great but come on a fed on fire would have been a better match up…so it was just strange match to watch from a fed perspective and even from nole perspective i guess he couldnt believe himself what shots fed was missing


thark Says:

c’mon guys give daveed a chance – he may surprise you – there is one match to go before the final…


aleish17 Says:

@ Kimmi:

Really is a beatdown for the world’s top 2 players. But Rafa’s beatdown by Ferrer is worse.
At least, Fed and Djoko’s match is quite close.


fern Says:

WellDone Nole!

Roger could not defend his points so he’ll lose 1240 points and will be slamless for the first time since 2002.


van orten Says:

if nole plays like this vs murray or ferrer you simply don´t know if it is going to be enough..because we don´t know if murray or ferrer will deliver him so many free points???
anyone got the unforced error winner stat by hand???


Jeaninho Says:

Yep, congrats to all Djokovicians. Let me get it right. He won AO ’08, it seems like ’11 as well. Accoding to statistics we might be seeing such a performance again in ’14. If the 2012 predictions hold any truth, we might just fit another AO in 2011 for 2012 and 2013. DAMNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN…….


Kimmi Says:

the commentators on the radio AO thinks that if it is murray in the final then they give murray a chance more that djoko..hmmm!

why would they say that after this perfomance today? interesting!


van orten Says:

what is most annoying for any fed fan i guess..is the fact that he loses so many times his focus when not taking his chances.. it is like everytime he does not convert his breakchances it is very likely that he will suffer a break in return the next service game of his!!!


dAri Says:

Congratyl djokovic! Sorry Fed, just he was a better player today!
Crazy, no fedal whatsoever in the final…. MUST CHmEER MURRAY FOR THE WIN over ferrer and subsequently nole. Djoko looking scary good though!
I hope Rog isn’t too sad


steve-o Says:

Congratulations to Djokovic, he played fantastic. He just blasted away. His forehand was doing more damage than the backhand, that means he was on top of his game. Served great, too.

Federer indecisive and passive, too many baseline rallies where he tried to outhit Djokovic with pace. For the first time since 2003, Roger Federer will not hold a Grand Slam title.

The true all-court style still needs work. But he’ll get there. There will be more Grand Slams this year.

Will we see a Djokovic-Murray final? And who will be the favorite there? Murray’s defense is considerably better than Federer’s; and he will slow the tempo of the rallies and blunt Djokovic’s straightforward power tennis, as Federer briefly tried to do in the second set, before going away from it.

Interesting. I do hope Murray can make it to the final. Wouldn’t this be the first time they’ve ever met in a major?


van orten Says:

because kimmy it is not likely that murray will give him so many free points ..murray is a rubber wall him self and almost always looks like nole looked vs fed today…nole trying to be aggressive and murray being the rubber wall returning and defending out of his mind!!!murray is a different caliber consistencywise..


Jeaninho Says:

Kimmi, if you place this game in perspective, its obvious that Federer was more off than Djokovic being on. Relative to Djoko’s fine play, you had a terrible Federer. Guys like Murray play the safe kind of tennis, obviously giving him a better chance. So the match-up there could favour Murray slightly.


stu Says:

yeah, I don’t think AndyM and Novak have ever met at a major. If they do meet, I hope Nole leaves the drop shot at home.


Nona Says:

Speaking as a Fed fan, whoa, that match was stressful to watch! I must have lost at least 50 pounds, mostly from hyperventilating during break point chances.

Honestly, Djoko played great, esp. on bigger points. Congratulations.

As for Fed, I am disappointed, but not overly bitter about it. He had his chances but didn’t capitalise on it. It’s just one of those things, a real bad day in the office. It sucks but it’s time to move on.


Nona Says:

Fed fronting the press. Acknowledged that Djoko was the better player tonight.


Jeaninho Says:

If I was Federer( I am a Fed fan by the way), I would just visit the Challenger Circuit for a couple of tournaments to gain much needed confidence. LOL


van orten Says:

@nona

indeed he was!


grendel Says:

If you wanted to be flippant, you could argue: yet another victory for Nadal over Federer. Wilander has been arguing for some time now that the new found aggression, designed to counter Nadal, would actually play into the hands of Djokovic and Murray, who would feed off it. This idea is vindicated today, although that is not to suggest that Federer could have won playing any other style. But in set 2, having been broken, Federer did slow the pace, and he was rewarded.

Still, the bottom line was: Djokovic was much too strong for Federer from the back of the court. All the much vaunted improvements to Fed’s bh counted for nothing – it was, frankly, aweful. The fh was ok, but a shadow of its former glory, and the serve was, by Federer standards, ordinary. The fact that he managed to make the sets tight-ish is a tribute to Federer’s warrior spirit. The desire to fight was there, the ability to do so effectively greatly diminished.

Djokovic was tremendous, wasn’t he. Absolutely unassailable from the back, his defence (when required) magnificent, and his serve rock safe. He still couldn’t resist the odd theatrical. When Federer earned a break point at 4-3 in the 3rd, Djokovic reacted as if catastrophe was imminent. Anyone not familiar with Djokovic’s histrionics might have wondered if he was weakening in a critical moment. Absolutely not. The danger was at once averted by some crunch serving.

Earlier in the set, with Djokovic serving at 2-1, Federer suddenly started to time the ball – for a fleeting instant, a couple of points in fact, we got a glimpse of the old, majestic Federer. Djokovic soon put a stop to this mini-resurgence by pulling out 4 humongus serves on the trot.

Whither Federer? It is customary, on these occasions, to say never mind, beaten by the better player on the day, he’ll be back. I beg leave to doubt this. The defeat was comprehensive, the “improvements”, when subjected to rigorous scrutiny, proved hollow – and Federer is, tennis wise, old. Pointing to Agassi’s late Spring is misleading, I think, because the standard of tennis now is hugely higher than it was in Agassi’s day. If Djokovic happens to be off at the next slam, then there are 2 or 3 others, just as good, ready to take his place.

The question then is: is Federer prepared to settle for quarters and semis – still within his reach, after all? I would guess not, but he won’t retire, which means he thinks he can come back and win some more big ones. I hope he can, but I very much doubt it.


Kimberly Says:

I had a feeling fed would start to spray the ball due to the consistency and quality of djokovic shots. Right till the end I really believed fed could get back in as Novak looked to be wearing down and fed barely breaking sweat.

Disappointed for fed fans, especially those who were so nice to us heartbroken rafa fans yesterday. But don’t worry, I am sure fed still has another slam or two in him!


steve-o Says:

Murray will slow down Djokovic and tangle him up in rallies and mix up the balls to confuse him.

Djokovic’s touch and variety is slightly inferior to Murray’s, he won’t be so easily able to find his way out of the trap. Plus Murray can out-defend Djokovic.

Federer played totally into Djokovic’s hands by engaging in pure hitting and trying to beat him to the punch from the baseline. It was almost like the Davydenko match last year, except Federer was sharper then and Davydenko isn’t as good as Djokovic.

Murray’s style is totally different. It’s going to be weird, off-pace junk-ball rallies, and I don’t think Novak will like it.

This is the biggest chance Murray has ever had to capture his first major. A Grand Slam final without either Federer or Nadal doesn’t come along every day–the last time that happened was three years ago exactly, on this very court.

If he doesn’t gag, if he really does want to win it for himself, and not just for the sake of Britain, he’ll step it up.

All Djokovic/Murray fans, you may yet have the final you wanted. Assuming Murray gets past Ferrer, which is by no means certain. I’m pretty sure almost everyone, save the die-hard Djokovic partisans, is hoping for Murray to make it.


Kimberly Says:

Go daveed!


van orten Says:

i hope fed will have next GS a bad quarter final that he wins in order to be in better shape in the semis…i mean he played outstanding tennis both last quarterfinals but really not so good then in the semis…


Nona Says:

Wouldn’t it be news of the year if Ferrer wins this? With Fed out of contention I am rooting for the Mr Ferrer. A long shot, I know.


Jeaninho Says:

Grendel, a very philosophical AO semi post-mortem. Being just a regular blogger I reckon you would outdone a lot of seasoned sport writers with this summary of the match. The fact of the matter is that you cannot used this match as a benchmark of what is to come. Check the stats and the history. Since AO ’08, it seems like the likes of Djoko happen to be old and downhill. It was just one of those very few highlights in the Djoko career. Class, and believe me Federer has class, will be back and he is bound to make some inroads again


Nona Says:

I don’t get it. Commentators opined that the “slow” court and “heavy” conditions conspired against Fed. Fed played great in the finals last year, under similar conditions – same surface, night match. It puzzles me as to why Fed is unable to generate power off both wings today. He looked so slow and sluggish in comparison to the effervescence and lively Djoko. Boy did Djoko punish Fed for those short balls.


van orten Says:

fed mostly punished himself for not bringing 1st serve when needed most!!!


steve-o Says:

I have faith, grendel.

Federer seemed torn today as to tactics–he didn’t come forward very much, stayed back, was content to try to outhit Djokovic–which is a fool’s errand for Federer at this point. He doesn’t have the footspeed or power on the forehand to do that anymore. But he has other means of beating his opponents, if he chooses to utilize them.

He is trying to adjust the habits of seven years or so. That doesn’t come in a month, or even two. He’s had Annacone on board for what, four months? Not nearly long enough.

He is essentially relearning how to be a Grand Slam champion.

You have to think of him as having returned to where he was circa 2002-early 2003–a talented youngster trying to figure out how to put a winning run together in the majors.

It’s kind of fun, actually, watching him return to the role of neophyte learning how to be a champ. I didn’t follow tennis when he was an up and coming player, and didn’t get the chance to watch him in his younger days. Now it’s like we can witness that process again, except with much less pressure, ‘cuz he’s already won everything he could possibly hope to win.

the standard of tennis now is hugely higher than it was in Agassi’s day.

But Federer is the man who set that standard. I believe he can raise the bar yet again and outdo himself.

It’s a rare magician who’s capable of that, but Federer is a rare magician indeed.


noleisthebest Says:

THUD!!!

The sound of rabid Federer fans coming down to earth, who were still celebrating Nadal’s demise yesterday………that champagne must now taste like hemlock…….

Talk about karma…..

To the decent Federer fans, commisserations……..he will be back, great champions always find a way

Go NOLE!!!


grendel Says:

Incidentally, very funny interview with Li Na on Eurosport. (in China, the first name is the family name, what we call surname, and the second is the “given” name, what we call “christian” – so the order is reversed). Talking to Barbara Schett, she displayed that earthy, uncomplicated humour typical of Chinese but which you never suspect when you watch Li Na grimly plying her trade on court.

Schett questioned her about her husband – who had disappeared for a toilet break at a weird time – and she remarked, with a huge, earsplitting grin: “Every time I look, you know, he look like this” and the grin is displaced by a sort of neutral baring of the teeth, “so I don’t know if he smile or angry!”. Big chortle, as Li appears to find this ambiguity extraordinarily funny. I reported on her on another thread, actually, for an earlier match. Whenever she made an error or played a loose shot, she would instantly cast a fuming, even demonic look in the direction of the unfortunate husband, clearly implying that the fault was entirely his. And he would just sit there, taking it, smiling gently and impassively as if this was the way of the world, and who was he to question it?

No wonder Li Na doesn’t know if he’s smiling or raving. Personally, I think it’s her conscience speaking…..


Fedex fan Says:

Bad day for fedfans.
Lets hope Fed gets back to form for FO.


noleisthebest Says:

aleish17 Says:
@ Kimmi:

“Really is a beatdown for the world’s top 2 players. But Rafa’s beatdown by Ferrer is worse.
At least, Fed and Djoko’s match is quite close.”

Rafa is REALLY camped in your head isn’t it!!!!!

Don’t blame u…….in 2 months time Raf will have recovered from his flu virus/muscle strain or whatever……and Fed? He will still be old….and getting older! I too would be spooked


Tennis Vagabond Says:

Big congrats to Nole and his fans. He was just better today. I’ve never seen him play so well, he looked so fast, his defense was on a par with Nadal. His serve and return of serve were exceptional.

This has turned into the most significant tournament in several years. First of all, with the breakthroughs of Dolgopolov, Raonic and Tomic we are seeing the first glimpse of the 2nd Post-New Balls Generation. Secondly, we are seeing the first break in the Pax Fedal. Mark my words, there is blood in the water and EVERYONE in the top 20 is going to have a little more spring in their step- provided Nadal doesnt bulldoze the field on clay and take all the air out of the room for a few months.

We also have to mark the first time in many years that Federer is not holding a single Slam. In fact, Fed has now gone 4 straight missing the Finals. I honestly felt the first three were rather flukey- Soderling had an awesome day when the conditions were just right; Berdych played a simply unbeatable atch; Nole at USO really had Fed on a bad day.
But 3 flukes in a row start to feel like there’s more than just flukes. Like, the Old ROg doesnt get fluked that many times.

And then there’s this: Nole outplayed him, simple as that. I don’t believe we’ve seen a permanent switching in their relevant positions: Fed has beaten him 3 straight going into this. But they’re clearly closer than they’ve ever been.
There may no longer be a Big Two, and then a Next Two. We may now have Nadal and a Next Three.
(notice Soderling still doesnt get respect despite making two GS Finals? I still don’t feel like he’s with the other 4!)

So we’ve got a new generation of challengers, a shake-up among the champions, and a king demoted to prince.

Most significant Slam in years.


Tennis Vagabond Says:

Another note:
Everybody wanted there to be a storyline of Anacone resurrecting Fed; of a magical coach taking the greatest ever to a new level.

It was and is an illusion. Fed was the best long before Anacone. He declined ever so slightly to being “one of the best” before Anacone, and with Anacone he is still “one of the best”.


grendel Says:

I’ve always thought this whole Anacone thing is hot air.


Gordo Says:

Yeah, Tennis Vagabond & grendel, that Roger Federer is such a rube, thinking that Anacone could help him.

If I ever see him I will see him a bridge or 2.


Andrew Miller Says:

Credit to Tennis-X for pointing out Novak’s serving issues – Novak listened to Tennis-X and look at him now!

Word to the ATP: free feedback for your game, right here!!!!


madmax Says:

Tennis vagabond,

“We also have to mark the first time in many years that Federer is not holding a single Slam”.

This is the FIRST slam of the year! There’s another 3 slams to go!

grendel. Annacone is one of the best coaches out there. Federer is one of the best players, but in my mind, the best player ever to play the game.

There is no doubt that having watched federer play last year live, plus having watched all his matches, he is a better player (from the early part of last year). What you say doesn’t hold for me. Annacone has had a positive influence on his game. No two ways about it. You are not a through and through ffederer fan, so how would you know? Have you seen him play live? have you watched all his matches? To say that the whole annacone thing is hot air is so dismissive of what his team have worked on so carefully this last 6 months.

The Federer at the end of the year at WTF was incredible. It’s still there. The talent. That is not going to go away. What has changed is the need, the want, the insatiable hunger, not just the hunger, but the insatiable hunger of having to win that he had a couple of years ago. That’s gone. It’s different. A different desire, where the insatiable hunger is with novak and with murray. (rightly so).

Timing. Change.

Federer fans celebrate this time, don’t be downhearted for too long. No point. Fed may not be winning them the way he used to. But everything comes to end at some time. I am excited about this phase. It’s different, and fed is still hungry.

But you know, it’s all been said before. Federer needs to prove nothing. Nothing to no one. At the moment, he is yesterday’s news. This is natural. This is natural. It doesn’t take long for the media, or fairweather fans to come out with rubbish.


madmax Says:

After reading some of the posts above, I cant remember who said that Federer was outplayed. Um. a tiebreaker? a break in the second set (poorly played by fed when 5:2 up) and a break in the third. Tennis vagabond. Too harsh. Too harsh.

Federer and novak have always had close matches, never have they been beat downs. Novak’s day deservedly.

Now wait for the trash to be written about federer.

It’s coming.


skeezerweezer Says:

@TV

Don’t think Annacone = improving Fed’s game is an illusion. He’s been with him for what…6 months? Did great in the Fall, just no majors, but as Madmax said, we have 3 more to go. As Fed says, “let’s see in 6 months”. Me still think it was a great call to add Annacone….


grendel Says:

madmax: “To say that the whole annacone thing is hot air is so dismissive of what his team have worked on so carefully this last 6 months.”

I understand where you are coming from. And I’d like to believe you are right, believe me. And perhaps you are.


skeezerweezer Says:

noleisthebest,

Your trash talking of Fed and fans is well received, your man played well and you deserve to hoot, but Rafa fans as well? Didn’t Nole just play Fed?


Tennis Vagabond Says:

MadMax- you think Fed has been sitting on his ass eating cupcakes the last 8 years?? Tell me how many Slams Fed has won. How many finals did he miss since 05? Now, how many finals has he missed with Anacone?

Yeah, I see. Huge improvement. Obvious, really.

Skeezer- your point is much more reasonable. Has Anacone improved Fed’s game? Not sure- in case anyone missed it, Fed had a trunkfull of WTF trophies before he met Anacone.
Maybe it was a good idea to add another high quality set of eyes. Maybe there has been marginal improvement. Maybe Fed would have sunk faster without the help. And while Fed has been more aggressive recently, this is not new: it is a style that saw him through his early years right until about 08 when he started to become more of a defensive baseliner. But this is not the story we’ve heard on these boards and through pundits- that Fed had retooled his game, and this New Fed was turning back the clock.
You can’t turn back the clock. You can slow it, but you can’t turn it back.
In the meantime, Fed has gone from #2 all the way to #2.

.


madmax Says:

I tell you what tennisvagabond, being as you are such an expert with the stats, (seriously, more than me), you do it. I dont need to keep coming up with stats about fed.

It’s the trash that has been written about him when really, this is the guy who has set the bar, raised the standard, raised his game – yes he has – you only have to go back to the last few months to see the changes, the wins of 4 tournaments last year and being the best year end player, a good start to the season of 2011, with a win in abu dhabi, and the momentum to have a good tournament at the AO, Of course would have been great if he had won. He didn’t. But a Semi final no less is stil a good result. But novak was a brilliant opponent. Fed acknowledged that. So no.3 beating no.2 is no bad thing.

Of course you can’t turn back the clock. But you think that rafa isn’t getting old? Who has got the oldest body on tour TV?

We are not talking about numbers, we are talking about body physics here. You know the answer.


madmax Says:

i would love to have the time to be in a position to work out the times fed has been in the final against the younger opponent, (properly, with scores, etc) All I know is that he has beaten the younger opponents, including djokovic 3 times last year, he has beaten berdyche, he has beaten baghdatis, murray, (and novak and murray being 6 years younger), he has beaten rafa, 5 years younger, but then you know all this anyway. So I dont think age cuts it . Plus you have a david ferrer, next birthday, 29, playing against murray, who pushed him to 4 sets and a tie breaker – these are athletes who have this capability irrespective of age. David ferrer doesn’t seem to be showing signs of slowing down. Isn’t it all about adapting the game, the style in order to shorten the points and not get into the longer rallies?

Plus, you have lava who won his slam at 32, connors at 34, agassi at 33, sampras at 32. I could go on.


Djokerfan Says:

I am just getting into tennis. I have to say, it is really annoying to watch every federer vs xxxx match, from federer’s perspective. Fans and commentators alike hardly give credit to anyone (not named nadal) who beats federer. if federer didn’t win, its not because the other player was better but because federer was doing something wrong.

On the federer vs. djokovic Australian Open 11 semis:

a) Federer was playing well and he lost
b) Federer didn’t approach the net because Djokovic “kept” him at the baseline
c) Federer served well but Djokovic is just an excellent returner
d) If you were paying any attention to the ESPN commentators, you will hear them say that Federer had done more running yet its Djokovic who seems to be breathing hard. Conclusion – Federer is fit. He said so himself.
e) Despite the fact that it is called unforced errors, the palyer (Djokovic) hits the ball in a way that “causes” his opponent (federer) to make and unforced error.
f) Yes, we all know federer is great. But at this match, Djokovic was greater.

And as for how Federer deserved to have won the US open semis last year, that is just insulting. He lost two sets at 1-6; 2-6. Some would say that in those two sets he wasn’t even trying.

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