Novak Djokovic: This Is The Greatest Win Of My Life, It’s Incredible
by Staff | January 29th, 2012, 12:31 pm

Following his incredible 5-set win over Rafael Nadal to capture his third Australian Open title, Novak Djokovic met the press to discuss his 5-hour, 53-minute epic victory:

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Many of you stayed this late. Thank you.

Q. We have to.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I know you have to, but make it look like you want to. (Laughter.)

Q. Was that the greatest win of your life?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Ah, yes. Right now, yes.
Probably Wimbledon because Wimbledon is right up there next to this one because it’s just the tournament that I always dreamed of winning.
But this one I think comes out on the top because just the fact that we played almost six hours is incredible, incredible. I think it’s probably the longest finals in the history of all Grand Slams, and just to hear that fact is making me cry, really.
I’m very proud just to be part of this history, part of the elite of the players that have won this tournament for several times, and I was very flattered to be playing in front of Rod Laver, in front of the all time greats, and in front of 15,000 people that stayed until 1:30 a.m.
It’s incredible, really.

Q. How did you keep going in that situation?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Look, you know, it’s finals. It was the fifth set. I had lots of chances to finish the match in the fourth, but he came up with some incredible serves and incredible points.
So he deserved to prolong the match in the fifth set, and then really both of us could have won the match. It could have gone either way. I felt my body started to slow down, but on the other hand, I was aware of the fact that he’s not as well feeling that great and fresh on the court.
I’m sure that physically it’s taking a toll on him, as well. So I tried mentally to hang in there, to hold my composure, to hold my emotions. And, you know, even when I was 4 2 down I still pushed myself up to the limit.
You know, one of the points I think of the match was at 4 All, fifth, the first point after 35 , 40 shot rally I think we both went down on our knees.
But these kind of matches I’m a professional tennis player. I’m sure any other colleague tennis player would say the same: We live for these matches. We work every day. We’re trying to dedicate all our life to this sport to come to the situation where we play six hour match for a Grand Slam title.

Q. Apart from the breathing problems you have been having, what other physical issues did you have to go through today and during the tournament?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Everything you can imagine. (Smiling.)
I mean, I don’t think it’s worth of talking now about these things. I mean, I overcomed everything, and that’s the most important thing for me.
And to be able to mentally hang in there and physically, you know I mean, it was obvious on the court for everybody who has watched the match that both of us, physically, we took the last drop of energy that we had from our bodies.
You know, I think it was just the matter of maybe luck in some moments and matter of, you know, wanting this more than maybe other player in the certain point.
You know, it’s just incredible effort.

Q. It was remarkable achievement. Rafa spoke about enjoying the suffering, actually building for this moment and enjoying the suffering.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I absolutely agree with him. I think I maybe had a similar feeling in couple of matches, but nothing like this. You know, you are in pain, you are suffer, you know that you’re trying to activate your legs, you’re trying to push yourself another point, just one more point, one more game.
You’re going through so much suffering your toes are bleeding. Everything is just outrageous, you know, but you’re still enjoying that pain.
So I would agree with that comment of Rafa.

Q. Can you talk us through your post match celebration with the shirt ripping, et cetera, and do you have energy to celebrate further tonight?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I don’t know. It’s already 4:00 a.m. I don’t know how far I can go, but right now I’m up for everything. (Laughter.)

Q. Maybe some breakfast?

Q. Yeah.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I don’t know. Food is not on my mind right now. (Smiling.)

Q. You talked about believing you could repeat 2011. If it’s going to be this tough, do you really want to go through this four times?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, if that’s the way, you know, then I guess I will have to go through it. I will have to accept it the way it is.
I mean, I’m not really concerned about the rest of the year how physically I’m gonna endure and all of that. It’s just the start of the year. I’m gonna have some weeks off now, and I’m gonna try to enjoy this victory as much as I can.
Then back to office, you know, back to work, preparation. There is much that awaits for me, but I definitely should enjoy the present moment.

Q. Can you go back to the 4 4 point, 31 ball rally. You hit the backhand; you miss it; you fall on your back. Was there any point when you’re on your back and you’re thinking, Maybe I should just stay down; I had a great year last year and I don’t want to get up?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: No, not at that point. At that point I was just thinking of getting some air and trying to recover for next point.
A thousand thoughts going through the mind, you know. Trying to separate the right from wrong, trying to prioritize the next point and taking it step by step.
I mean, I’m playing against one of the greatest players ever, you know, the player that is so mentally strong, and he always comes up with his best game and best shots at the right moments.
We both knew that we can’t really go too far in the rallies, so you could feel that we all tried to hit the ball as much as as hard as we could and tried to go for winners.
You know, he’s not usually the one that takes the advantage over the point in being aggressive and hitting full shots. He always tries to construct the point, and, you know, playing some variety in that game.
But then in the last game when I was serving I had a feeling that he was really trying to step into the backhand and forehand and just try to go for everything or nothing.
That’s what I have done in game before, so at that stage you have nothing left.

Q. In the last game you were crossing yourself after the break point. Did you actually say a prayer at that point?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Yeah. I mean, yeah. I was trying to find every possible help and energy that I can. It paid off, I guess.

Q. Is there any part of you that feels a little bit sorry for Rafa? I mean, he keeps coming up against you in the final and he keeps losing.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, you know, I was in that position. I was in that position a couple years ago, you know, losing most of the semifinals and finals against him and Roger in Grand Slams so I know how it feels.
I really thought what I said sincerely on the court, is that unfortunately there had to only be one winner because we both gave it all. We both put 100% of our abilities on the court and played to the last moment.
Unfortunately there couldn’t be two winners, but he definitely deserved to be a winner as well tonight. You know, I would be saying same thing if I’m sitting here as a loser.

Q. How much time do you take off now?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: I don’t know. I don’t know. I have to sit down with the team, but I’m definitely gonna take off at least two weeks.

Q. You are on the road to a Grand Slam if you win Roland Garros. How important will be your preparation for the French Open?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Very important, you know. I’m prioritizing Grand Slams this year, as every year, and Olympic Games. I think that’s one of my highest goals.
That doesn’t mean of course that I’m not gonna prepare well and perform my best on the other tournaments. It’s just that, you know, the Grand Slams matter the most.
So I want to do well and I want to get the first final at least in Paris, you know. I have never been in finals there, and I have a feeling that I’m ready this year to achieve that.

Q. Were you pleased when they gave you the chair in the ceremony?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Oh, yes, very pleased. I think we both were. We both respect and we are very much aware of the ceremonies and how they go. Everybody has to talk, of course. We agree with that.
But, you know, if they could only consider a little bit our condition at that point, you know, and I think they did. That’s why I want to thank them for those chairs, because it saved our legs.

Q. After this tennis overdose you just had, what are you going to say to your friends or acquaintances? Don’t talk about tennis for a week or…

Q. Or a month?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Please, yes. I’m gonna definitely try to get that message to them (smiling).

Q. You had a brutal match against Murray, very, very tough, and then came back with one day less rest and won in a long match like that. How did you do it in terms of recovery? Was it really hard? Did you find a solution to help things out with regard to the breathing problems you had in the last match?
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Generally it’s very important to prepare well. Everybody has a different routine and different scheduling and program of practicing and recovering, and, you know, just preparing for what’s coming up.
It’s an individual sport, so we all try to rely on the people who are traveling with us. That’s why I have said on the court is this is a team effort, you know, because I couldn’t do it myself. I need all these people to take care of every aspect of my career, for my body, in order for me to be able to be ready to perform the way I did.

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103 Comments for Novak Djokovic: This Is The Greatest Win Of My Life, It’s Incredible

El Flaco Says:

After the match Djokovic through his shirt to a young girl in the crowd, but some lady reached out in front of her and snatched the shirt.

tennisfan Says:

What an inspiring win by Nole. Goes on to show: “The difference between the impossible and the possible lies in a person’s determination.”
Novak Djokovic (The Steel Man) wins the Battle of Will against Rafael Nadal!

V Blacklabel Says:

Here’s my take on this weekend’s Aussie finals and how Djokovic, Nadal, Azarenka and Sharapova all answered the same question, the same way during this tournament:

skeezerweezer Says:

Whats more incredible now is if Djoker continues his run this year. By the end of the year he could be holdin 8 or 9 Slams. Wow.

jamie Says:

Hi, ya’ll.

As predicted, Nole won the AO.

Predicting the winner of a slam is quite easy, actually. Nole had the best chart for the AO by far. You must have noticed that he didn’t win this AO as easy as he won in 2008 and 2011… He will continue winning titles until May, dominating and making tons of prize money. But after May he will enter a different period where he will still remain competitive but he will not win another slam this year….

What is complicated is predicting the slam finalist because sometimes a player with a very lousy chart can reach the final. Nadal has had very bad charts for the past 3 slams(Wimbledon, USO and AO) but he still made the finals but he was never winning not with a negative chart. For example, Del Potro had better charts at Wimbledon, USO and AO than Nadal but still Nadal went further. Neither of them had the winning chart for Wimbledon, USO or AO. Same can be said for Federer and Murray. None of these guys were winning the past 3 slams. Nole had the winning chart for the past 3 slams.

According to the psychic:

FO will be won by Nadal and could very likely be his last slam win.

Wimbledon and USO, Murray could end up winning both and becoming #1.

Federer will not win another slam in his career.

Del Potro will win another slam in 2013.

And Djokovic will not win another slam this year but will resume winning again on the biggest tennis stage in 2013.

tfouto Says:

Jamie get a life…

tennisfansince76 Says:

alright Jamie i’m going to remember those predictions and we’ll see you in sept.

Tennis Fan Says:

… actually the match is still going .. they are both still bouncing the ball getting ready to serve :) … twenty-three … twenty-four … twenty-five … ‘hey ump are you ever going to enforce the real rules of tennis on these guys …

alison hodge Says:

i think we get the picture now,its exactly the same post every time,jamie seriously you must be blue in the face by now,puurlease for goodness sake change the bloody record.

Ajet Says:

agree with alison, this jamie is so boringly repetitive! yawn…

mat4 Says:

A few comments about the time record:

Usually, Djokovic takes about 25 seconds to serve, Nadal about 35. If that match was played between Federer and… let’s say Federer (average 15 seconds), it would have lasted about 1 hours 50 minutes less.

Skorocel Says:

That’s true, mat4

Krishna Says:

Thanks jamie :)

S Green Says:

Djokovic: “there had to only be one winner because we both gave it all.”

All players give some; but only a few give ALL.
That’s how the best achieve the mark of distinction.

S Green Says:

I believe when Djokovic sets his sight on something, he achieves. More than mere belief, he has just well positioned himself to do that now.

If he happens to reach only 50% of his goal set for this year, he will win either French or Olympic. Personally I’d prefer the French. The Olympic is just too nationalistic for my taste, but that’s me.

Kimberly Says:

Hey all, a shout out to everyone. JANE WON THE ATP AND WTA BRACKET CHALLENGE for tennis-x fans. Very impressive picking on both although some of our WTA brackets really bombed with Sam Stosur, Li Na, Serena Williams etc. Anyway, I am very impressed and think she should replace Sean Randall with the expert picks!

Congrats Jane. Thanks to everyone who played the bracket challenge atp and the few that played the WTA. It was a lot of fun. See you and hopefully some newbies in Indian Wells.

Eric Says:

mat4, exactly, thank you for pointing that out. I tuned in about 75 minutes after the match started, expecting them to be almost done with a second set. Nope. Not done with the first.

(Just for comparison, because it’s the easiest match to find stats for, Federer/Nadal at Wimbledon 2008 was an hour shorter, but they played 413 points; Nole and Rafa played ‘only’ 369, or 12% fewer, points.)

As a preview during the women’s final, they flashed a “miles ran” statistic from the men’s semifinals (it was something like Rafa, 2.7, Nole, 4.3, but I don’t remember exactly). I wonder if that information is available for other matches anywhere…

Kimmi Says:

kimberly – I havent been following the WTA bracket. But wow jane. winning both brackets? seriously, tell us the secret. you rock girl.

maybe I need to concentrate on jamie psychic friend predictions. I might just beat you next time teee hee:) If only jamie friend could do the WTA predictions..we could be rich.

jane Says:

:) Ha, thanks Kimberly. Just a fluke, but wouldn’t it have been nice if I’d've bet some cash on those!?

grendel Says:

Some shots I especially noticed. In the first game, Nadal hit a fh down the line for 0-30, and Djokovic didn’t move – looked ominous, somehow.
Nadal, standing miles behind the base line (yet to do a Murray) often gave short returns for Djokovic to latch onto.
First break point at 2-2 and D hot a pretty good volley into the corner, but Nadal responded with a marvellous shot low over the net. Djokovic hesitated, then let the ball drop, and as a consequence had to deal with a dead ball, eliciting the inevitable Nadal pass. A natural volleyer would have moved instinctively into volleying mode – and won the point from there, assuming he didn’t dump it.
At break point, Nadal actually receives on the base line, and he hits it way long – it’s as if he was not used to the high bounce, at any rate, he miscalculated.
At 3-2, Nadal hits a slightly short ball, obliging Djokovic to move up to the net – and he actually executed a lovely angled drop volley – an opportunistic, rather than designed winner.
Nadal earned the right to serve for the set with a strange loopy bh which Djokovic would normally have hammered away, but for some reason lifted over the base line. A combination of very good serving and an excellent approach to the net took Nadal to set point, but a cautious serve let Djokovic back in. Another good body serve did the job, however. Nadal’s whippy fh generally a delight.
At 2-1 in 2nd set, at break point Nadal was forced into hitting a ball low over the net, and there was a great volley from Djokovic to gain the break.
Nice volley from an anticipated crosscourt bh to earn set point. When Nadal risks a fh down the line early in the rally, he surprises Djokovic. Double fault from Nadal gives Djokovic 2nd set – just as D had d.faulted set point in first set.
There was one tremendous slice from Nadal which kept very low and Djokovic hit over the top of it into the corner to earn break point.
Wilander noted that generally, sliced bhs elicited weak responses from Djokovic – who would be obliged to try to generate his own pace , since he had nothing to feed on – allowing Nadal to really go for it with his fh.

In the 4th set, at 3-4, 0-40 Nadal pulled back to hold. Nadal the fighter much in evidence in the 4th and Djokovic making more and more tired looking errors. In the 5th, Nadal forced the break point at 2-3, winning most of the long rallies by now. Also, surprisingly, Nadal’s serve was much more potent than Djokovic’s. Out of the blue, Nadal missed an easy bh at 30-15, Nadal’s focus was clearly disturbed, and following some good returns Djokovic broke back. This was a monumental error by Nadal, and a clear turning point, for Nadal had been close to being rampant. It is hard to account for other than Djokovic being in Nadal’s head.

Nadal had been winning all the long rallies, but at last Djokovic got one following an excellent approach and volley – which brought a big smile to his face, it absolutely is not his natural game. Djokovic was given a reprieve following a shockingly poor return game to reach 4-4. After a 31 shot rally, Djokovic collapsed and took a little breather. And yet, serving at 4-5, Djokovic was moving well again. This man doesn’t just have 2nd winds, he has 3rd, 4th and 5th winds. It’s mysterious, or perhaps odd,, but you have to put it down to a tremendous will and heart, surpassing even Nadal’s.
The drama continued right to the end, with a strange error from Nadal – fancy attempting a drop shot at this juncture, and Djokovic missing a smash at 30 all, and a final cracking shot from Nadal, a hard hit ball which Djokovic couldn’t handle, earning Nadal break point. But that was at last it.
I thought Nadal’s fh was monumental, and much better than Djokovic’s. His serve, too, how weird that he is finally getting that lefty curve on it. He was hitting it quite hard, too, though not up to 2010 US Open standard. It’s an authentic weapon, now, it seems.

So is it true that Nadal has drawn much closer to Djokovic – just one more heave, so to speak, and he’ll have got him? The jury has to be out on this one. Surely Djokovic was hampered by the Murray marathon, and he wasn’t in the consistently good form of last year anyway. He can be expected to improve, I’d have thought – not good news for Nadal.

Angel Says:

It’s true that maybe Federer will never win another Grand Slam again(he is 30 now, you can’t win Grand Slams all your life), but it doesn’t look good for Nadal either and he is just 25. If he couldn’t beat Nole with an extra day off and after 5 hour marathon between Nole and Murray, I don’t know but I don’t think he is going to have a better opportunity than this one to beat him. After all he might never win a Grand Slam anymore either. But who knows for sure…

El Flaco Says:

Federer can still win a grand slam, but he isn’t going to beat Djokovic and Nadal in the same tournament to do it.

El Flaco Says:

Another interesting point was 5-5 30-30(I think) in the 5th set. Djokovic had to stretch to get 2 hands on his backhand and he let out a late moan after he had struck the ball. Nadal heard it just before he went for a forehand winner down the line and he missed it wide. Nadal immediately put his hands in the air after he missed the shot and complained to the umpire. He said to the umpire “he hit the ball and then AHHHHHHH) For some reason none of the commentators knew what was going on. They thought he was complaining about a line call. The umpire just shrugged his shoulders. Nadal lost next point and was broken. Djokovic would serve for the match.

Kimmi Says:

is that what happened el flaco, Ii eventually managed to watch the final set) i couldn’t understand what was going on. The commentators said the ball was called out..i was wondering which ball? it must have been rafa’s serve coz djokovic return was way in.

they both make some kind of a noise when hitting the ball, what was different about this AHHHHH noise that djokovic made?

skeezerweezer Says:

“Nadal, standing miles behind the base line (yet to do a Murray) often gave short returns for Djokovic to latch onto.”

Well Rafa was born on Clay courts, which is a well known position( miles behind the baseline), but does not serve him well on the other surfaces. But when he is back on Clay, the position is formidable.

grendel as usual your write was enjoyable, I was reliving some of the match in my mind via your words, which is credit to you.

My take on the match overall is that Rafa’s BH side is still the weaklink, and Nole has the tools to use to his advantage. Rafa’s so called slice( egads man its a chop, a hack, etc…but not a pure slice groundstroke ). When he uses it, it is never for offense, only for defense, giving the signal to his opponent “it is time to take control” of the point. He rarely hits a winner off it, wait…..I have never seen him hit a winner off it. But more importantly, it never causes any damage to his opponent. That said, this match he hit his BH “over the top” better than the last 6 times they met.

Isn’t it ironic how Feds BH vs Rafa was THE determining factor in there matches and now Rafa has the same issue with another player? Just sayin…….

skeezerweezer Says:

@ Angel and El Flaco,

Hopeful :). Agree that he needs a kind draw. And based on some of the draws the other top players have drawn it is not an unfair thing if it happens ;)

El Flaco Says:


Rafa felt that Djoko’s grunt was well after he hit the ball and it distracted him on the forehand. I don’t recall if it was really that late of a grunt or if Rafa’s mind was playing tricks on him.

skeezerweezer Says:

Has anyone noticed re-watching the match how many fist pumps Rafa had? How many do you need?

Side note; watched some of the Womens Final, such a crack up. First time I ever saw another women compete for shrieking with Sharapova. It was music to the ears and if you played the right drumbeat you could have made a song.

Kimmi Says:

djokovic took a while to use his backhand down the line today. they were way in the middle of the second set when he hit his first backhand winner. first backhand winner? this is djokovic bread and butter shot and it was non existent in one and a half sets.

I agree with grendel. i also think rafa was closer to djokovic today because djokovic was not at his “consistently good form” as grendel put it..

jane Says:

I don’t recall seeing this in the match, but I’m sure I read it in one of the match summaries. Apparently, Rafa challenged one of his own serves? Because he thought Nole’s return was out or some such? I didn’t really understand it. Does anyone recall seeing this?

Also, both Bodo and Tignor have summations of the match. Here’s Tignor’s:

El Flaco Says:

Actually Kimmi it was at deuce when it happened. Fast forward to the 9:00 minute mark of this video and you can see the point and hear what Rafa says to the umpire after.

Kimmi Says:

yeah i saw that jane. nole hit a return winner then rafa asked for a challenge. I thought the umpire should not have allowed it, he did. But then this challenge thing is not very clear on exactly when you are allowed or not allowed to challenge. it all depend on the umpire imo.

El Flaco Says:

Definitely a ton of fist pumps Skeez. It felt like every point was either the thrill of victory or the agony of defeat.

Kimmi Says:

yeah, i saw that el flaco, it was not a service mistake. But that was just a groan, both guys were tired, djokovic looked more so..every ball was so much effort at that time. I am glad the umpire did not do anything.

jane Says:

Kimmi, I must’ve missed it. There were lots of complaints about bad calls during the AO, wherein, for e.g., the ump could’ve overruled so the player didn’t have to challenge. I think there were a few in the final too, maybe even one where they replayed the point even though the ball was shown to be in?


Kimmi Says:

the line calls at this year AO was BAD!


t7 times on road nadal is geting beating by djokovic,its reason why djokovic is number one
congrats,after almoust six hours i can say he is incredible player

jane Says:

I was glad Nole answered this question the way he did:

Q. Is there any part of you that feels a little bit sorry for Rafa? I mean, he keeps coming up against you in the final and he keeps losing.
NOVAK DJOKOVIC: Well, you know, I was in that position. I was in that position a couple years ago, you know, losing most of the semifinals and finals against him and Roger in Grand Slams so I know how it feels.
I really thought what I said sincerely on the court, is that unfortunately there had to only be one winner because we both gave it all. We both put 100% of our abilities on the court and played to the last moment.


These people obviously forget all the tough losses Nole has had to face, much like Murray, at the hands of Fed and Rafa who have 26 slams between them, whereas Nole has 5 now. Some of the toughest losses Nole faced versus Rafa were at the USO 2010 after beating Fed in the semis, the Olympics on hard playing for the gold medal match, at Hamburg on clay 2008, at Monte Carlo, Rome and Madrid in 2009 on clay, at Queens on grass 2008 – all matches semis or finals. And there were more. With Fed, all of the toughest losses were probably at the USO – 2007, 08, 09, finals, semis, semis.

So of course Nole knows how it feels to be on the losing side, repeatedly, in those rivalries. It wasn’t long ago that Nole’s H2H with Rafa was very similar to Fed’s and Rafa’s. He’s only in the past year begun to turn those around.

In short, it was kind of a silly question by the journalist. What? Nole’s supposed to feel sorry for winning over Rafa? I thought that’s the goal.

Nims Says:

Guys, people are getting carried away because the match lasted 6 hrs. But if you re-watch the match again, you could clearly see that they definitely lacked shot making and most of the rallies ended with dumb errors.

It’s nothing to do with the players. I believe it’s the surface and the balls slowing down the playing conditions causes this issue. We need some faster conditions to see all court tennis and consistent shot making.

Michael Says:


I disagree with your analysis that Nadal played better than Djokovic. For me, Nadal was lucky to have extended the match to five sets when he was three break points down in the fourth set at 3-4. Agreed he played splendidly there to make it a tie break. But thereto it was Djokovic’s errors that gave Nadal a new lease of life and into the fifth set. In the fifth, I accept that Nadal played better than Djokovic and could have snatched the trophy with a little bit of luck especially when he was leading 4-2 with a break. But somehow Djokovic came through helped by his lethal cross court winners and Nadal’s errors. From thereon it was purely a mental game which Novak won. You have to split the match in parts. In the first set, it was equal while in the 2nd and 3rd sets, Djokovic was much better and similarly in the fourth set too, they were equal. It is in the 5th set, where Nadal was much better than Novak, but yet he lost. Unlucky for Nadal and lucky for Novak. But I need to congratulate both the players for a great match that they played which will be much remembered in Tennis History. I do not think there will be a longer match than this just because both the players were taking about 35 seconds between points and that too would have stretched this match.

Michael Says:

Nadal paid the price for being too defensive and not going for his shots. He was standing way over the baseline and was expecting cheap points from Novak’s errors. He played a negative game for much of the match and only by the middle of the fourth set, he got aggressive and made a match of it. If he had only been aggressive right from the start, who knows the match could have taken a different turn. But all credit to Novak for making Rafa play to his terms.

skeezerweezer Says:

great post

totally agree. Although my take is to just get the 4 slams back to waaaaay different playing surfaces. It shows/proves a complete champion as well as makes things a heckava lot more fun. You can dominate on fast/slow/medium speed AND different surfaces.
Nowadays? No disrespect, the match was awesome, but are we getting into the days of PONG and the surfaces are made to play to alike. Its a shame imo.

Wouldn’t it be cool that Novak ( as an example ) could not play the same way he would play on Clay? On the original Wimby, his current style of play would not work. But what if he learned to play an entirely different style on a different surface and it made him win( S&V, chip and charge, etc)? Just saying…..otherwise what are the Slams for? Just different places now, not different surfaces/speed.

Nims Says:

@Michael: If you assume playing from defensive to aggressive is a piece of cake for Rafa you are wrong. Rafa had too go out of his way to do it. It’s almost impossible for him to play a 5-setter aggressively, just like it’s impossible for Roger to play defense with NAdal over 5-sets.

Nims Says:

skeezerweezer: Yes it’s a pity that they slowed the Wimbledon by using super heavy balls. I remember for last Wimbledon they said balls were heavier by 6 times compared to what it was used in the 90′s. That’s just ridiculous. Both AO and French look to be similar surface now, except French has bit more bounce compared to AO.

USO seems to be the only saving grace, but with it’s wrong schedule screws up the quality of tennis. But still I would rate the best quality of tennis for past two years happened in USO.

jane Says:

Thanks skeeze.

Nims, yes, they all have their “default” natural style. They did an analysis of court positioning at one point and Rafa was only 4% of the time inside the baseline, to Nole’s 36% inside the baseline. Rafa just has to force himself forward.

Nole should have come to net more too. I mentioned this on the other thread. In the 5th set, the game in which Rafa broke, Nole should have come at 2-3 30-all. Nole had Rafa waaaaay back scrambling at the baseline early in the point and he could’ve come in and finished it with a deft drop volley; there is no way Rafa would’ve gotten to it. However, being most comfortable at or on the baseline, he stayed back, got caught up in a long rally, and since Nole was the one going for a winner, while Rafa was defending like gangbusters, Nole made an error (FH wide) and set up the break point for Nadal. 30-40. And of course the long rally wore him down too. Luckily for Nole, he was able to break back later when Rafa missed a BH passing shot. But in that 6th game, Nole should have held imo, and he might’ve done so had he come in and finished the point at the net.

Nims Says:

jane: Nadal did try stepping in to the court and tried few FH down the lines. But he missed most of them, except few in the begining of 1st set. He cannot afford to do it more since it’s his lowest percentage shot. Also imaging Nadal could not step into the court and hit a consistent winners in a slow HC which shows it’s almost next to impossible for him to do it. Maybe Novak’s balls are heavy and with insane depth, which also caused him to say way behind the baseline even in the last set.

I think Nole say Roger’s semi match. Nadal hit some insane passes when Roger came in for some excellent GS. But still he got passed. Same with Berdych match also. So we never know if it’s a good tactic against Nadal. He is the best at hitting the targets.

jane Says:

That’s true Nims – Rafa is excellent at passing shots so it could’ve been tactical to stay back. I am sure Nole watched the Roger-Rafa semi; he said he was going to do so. But sometimes, when Rafa was out of position, way back behind the baseline, Nole could’ve come in and ended the point.

Nims Says:

jane: As I was typing the previous message, I watched the 5th set 6-5 game at 30-15 point. Novak hit an incredible FH DTH after a long rally and went into the net. Nadal returned an unbelievable lob at a full stretch from his BH side way out of the court, Novak snubbed the ball in to the net.

This definitely would have been the pattern had Novak approached the net more.

jane Says:

^ Perhaps especially because he was out of gas by that point.

Michael Says:


Nadal was just helpless in that third set slaughter of Novak. I have never seen him being such a spent force especially in that particular set. I agree Nadal cannot play aggressive tennis on a continuous basis. But what I am disappointed is the fact that he was playing a negative game standing way over the baseline which Novak didn’t take advantage of. Nadal was praying for Novak’s errors more than rely on his winners. Especially the drop shots which Novak hits so well was absent for most part of the match.

Michael Says:

I have never seen such a tough player as Novak. He is really a tough nut to crack and never gives up at any stage of the match. He is more than Nadal and that tells a lot about his mental orientation. Finally, Nadal has met his match.

skeezerweezer Says:

@michael after re watching the match twice, never have seen Rafa so perplexed and defeated after a match. Sure he said this and that, but No matter how many ways everyone politics it, the facts are Nole has won against Rafa not only 7 times in a row, but ALL in finals, 3 of them Slams. I am sure this is the biggest thorn and blemish a top player has ever had. There is no comparisan. An unbelievable achievement by Novak where his only blemish between last years AO and this one was the magnificent beatdown Fed gave the #1 at FO 2011.

After 7 consectutive tries, what new form can Rafa bring to the table that he hasn’t already tried? Moonballing? More fistpumping? Bigger serve? True, he gave a renewed effort, but if that is it Nole gave an answer for it, and the rest of the tour is watching.

Lulu Iberica Says:

Yes, all true Skeezer, right now (and maybe forever?) Rafa is Nole’s pigeon, whipping boy, bunny, whatever, but getting to the freakin’ finals is better than not getting there! It’s very clear that right now Nole is the best and Rafa the second best. Maybe later in the year Mr. Murray will make his move, but that’s how things stand right now. How embarrassing, being the clear #2 player in the world!

Michael Says:


This was the best time Nadal could have got the better of Novak. If he has missed this bus, then it is certainly not a good sign for him. Novak was looking out of sorts, a bit weary after that marathon match against Murray. He was certainly not in his element and was in a hurry to finish points since he felt that a longer match could be to his disadvantage. This is not the usual Novak you see against Nadal who was making far too unforced errors at critical moments. Despite all these, he got through.

Certainly Nadal lacks the weapons to hurt Novak. His forehand which is looking devastating against others is looking pretty ordinary against Novak. Novak is also able to pick up his first serve and hit returns which drops on the line. This has made Nadal to comment that as regards the return of serve, Novak is the best in history. Yes you are right, he has no special weapons to hurt Novak at the moment.

nadalista Says:


skeezerweezer Says:

Apologies not tryin to make it personal. Remember, Fed is Rafa’s pidgeon too ;)
On other threads I have given Rafa props and his due. He surely got more positives out of this match for future meetings. But is his increased will and determination enough? I am wondering. As for Nole, it is not clear sailing either, as Fed seems to match up well, even at a senior age, and like you said, Murray has proven he his knocking heavily at the door. Hope this year we see alot of topsy turbey events. How fun, no?

skeezerweezer Says:

Headshake. Is that a sideways one or vertical?

Lulu Iberica Says:

Sorry, Skeezer, I’m a bit sensitive right now! I keep searching tennis boards, as if I might discover an alternate ending :(
I actually agree with you and Michael that Nole wasn’t at his best and this was a good opportunity for Rafa. I’m trying to find a balance between realistic expectations and faith in my guy. The one certain positive a Nadal fan can take from this tournament, though, is that Rafa has improved his own game and fitness from last year, and he’s still working to improve. Whether that will be enough, I don’t know, but at least it’s good to see him being passionate and giving his all.

mat4 Says:

I watched the clips with Leconte’s and Mouratoglou’s analysis of the final. They both think that Rafa didn’t make enough changes in his game and that gamewise, he was utterly outperformed (BTW, do I sound like René from “Allo, allo”?).

nadalista Says:

skeezerweezer Says:
Headshake. Is that a sideways one or vertical?

…………..dunno, can’t quite make up my mind to be honest!

Skorocel Says:

Skeezerweezer: „I am sure this is the biggest thorn and blemish a top player has ever had. There is no comparisan.“

Oh, come on! Don’t try to convince yourself there isn’t one! Btw, Nadal still leads Djoker 16-14 & 5-3 in slams (or make that 3-3, if you subtract those 2 Nadal wins per withdrawal). That’s still lot better than 2-8 (or 9-18), don’t you think? ;-)


„An unbelievable achievement by Novak where his only blemish between last years AO and this one was the magnificent beatdown Fed gave the #1 at FO 2011.“

Too bad that that „beatdown“ (?) was the only thing worth of mentioning for Roger in 2011 (if we don’t count the YEC, that is)…


Has anyone noticed re-watching the match how many fist pumps Rafa had? How many do you need?

I don’t call it fist pumps. I call it “sawing”. When you see Nadal “sawing” after he won the point, you know the opponent’s in trouble…


@El Flaco: Yes, that point in the 5th set which you mentioned happened at 5 all, deuce. Nadal hit a very close 2nd serve, but neither the chair umpire nor the linesman called it out, so they continued playing the rally and then once Nadal lost it, he (at least from what I heard) complained to the umpire that Djoker had probably uttered some scream when he hit that return (probably something like: „That was out!“ or „Out!“) and that may’ve distracted him. When you check the video again, you probably won’t hear anything from Djoker (at least I didn’t), but you could clearly hear Nadal, once the rally ended, saying to the umpire: „He think the ball out, he said out!“

Wog boy Says:

I was trying, and couldn’t find anybody mentioning Nadal challenging his own serve after Novak’s winner return in order to get a second serve and deny Novak a well deserved point. How fair was that? Courier said that he is allowed, that you can technically do that but he has never seen anybody doing that until Nadal did it. I think that is what Kimmi is talking about, a lot of peple thought that Nadal is challenging Novak’s return, but actually he was challenging his own serve.
Skorocel is right about the other point too.

Wog boy Says:

To clarify,he was saying that his serve was out ! ! !

Skorocel Says:

Wog boy: I remember that point too. It happened earlier in the match (I guess in the 2nd or 3rd set), and Nadal indeed challenged his own serve after Djoker hit a winning return of it. I recall the commentator saying it is legal to do that (btw, I remember Roddick once doing the same thing at the USO), but also mentioning that Djokovic was probably arguing with the umpire that Nadal shouldn’t be allowed the challenge because the rally was already ended (i.e. what happened was that Nadal had touched the Djoker’s return and only then wanted to challenge his own serve; can’t remember if it was a clear winning return from Djoker or if Nadal indeed touched it and then asked for that challenge, though)…

Wog boy Says:

Skorocel, yes it was earlier in the match. The only one out of three commentators that said it is OK to do that was Hewitt, knowing him as player I would be suprised if said opposite:-)

grendel Says:

@Michael, 11.40 p.m “I disagree with your analysis that Nadal played better than Djokovic”. I didn’t say that, and hope I didn’t imply it. I said his fh was much better and, oddly, his serve tended to be more potent. I’m surprised there has not been more comment on Nadal’s serve, which is pretty unique right now and very effective – although he can be Murray-ish on the 2nd. I agree with you the match can be seen as a story of parts.

About Nadal standing so far back – I mentioned he had a go at positioning himself on the base line (early in the match) and he grossly mistimed the ball. I daresay this put him off.

“Certainly Nadal lacks the weapons to hurt Novak. His forehand which is looking devastating against others is looking pretty ordinary against Novak”. That was sometimes true, but definitely not the case in the 5th. Nadal’s fh, when working properly, is an incredible shot against anyone, including Djokovic. But he does have to take risks, and Nadal seems averse to doing this except when the adrenalin is flowing – say, when the threat of defeat looms.

About Djokovic and the net. By definition, there were all sorts of occasions he could have done so but didn’t, it just isn’t his game. Being a very great tennis player, he can naturally do so from time to time, but he will never incorporate it as an automatic ingredient to his game. Old habits dies hard.

Yes, Nadal appealed against his own serve. Nothing wrong with that, except when he did it. This is a grey area, with no consistency at all among the umpires. With some umpires, you almost get the feeling that if a player was to suddenly challenge for a point earlier in the game, the umpire would calmly summon hawkeye.

Re the rivalry. i don’t get the feeling that this is a repeat of Fed/Nadal. Personally, I never give Federer a chance against Nadal in a slam. Absolutely Nadal is in with a chance against Djokovic, even if Djokovic is favourite.

Michael Says:


About this Nadal’s serve, he is one of the most consistent server around. The serve lacks speed but is compensated by placement, top spin and movement. Right through this Australian Open, his first serve percentage has been well over 70%. That is super special by any standards. I have never seen a more consistent server than Nadal in Tennis today. It is one of the best in the game but is grossly underestimated.

That was sometimes true, but definitely not the case in the 5th. Nadal’s fh, when working properly, is an incredible shot against anyone, including Djokovic. But he does have to take risks, and Nadal seems averse to doing this except when the adrenalin is flowing – say, when the threat of defeat looms

That is a mystery as to why Nadal became aggressive only by the middle of fourth set and right through the fifth set and that was precisely the time when he was getting the better of Novak in rallies. If he had only done much early in the match, the results might have been different. But you have explained it by saying that Nadal will not become aggressive except when defeat is staring in his face. How this can be when Nadal is aggressive right from the start against Roger, Berdych, Murray etc. etc., but not against Novak ??? I think he is destructed in his mind against Novak and is not confident.

Re the rivalry. i don’t get the feeling that this is a repeat of Fed/Nadal. Personally, I never give Federer a chance against Nadal in a slam. Absolutely Nadal is in with a chance against Djokovic, even if Djokovic is favourite.

Lately this is difficult to believe. Yesterday was the fine opportunity for Nadal to get the better of Novak when everything was going for him and yet he failed. Now beaten for the third consecutive time in a major and adding to that is the four defeats in important Master series events his confidence would have plummeted to its lowest and the next time he faces Novak he would surely be defeated in his mind.

Wog boy Says:

Michael, you are in my books for two drinks of your choice, one standard and one double shot.
Cheers and we will repeat for FO :-)

Michael Says:

Thanks Wog Boy. Cannot wait for the French Open to begin but before that we will be having the duel in Indian Wells and Miami where Novak and Nadal have many points to defend. We have very interesting days ahead.

grendel Says:

” How this can be when Nadal is aggressive right from the start against Roger, Berdych, Murray etc. etc., but not against Novak ??? I think he is destructed in his mind against Novak and is not confident”

Absolutely. So the problem is mental. But that might be resolvable. Nadal has been pretty close, on occasion, to beating Djokovic, so the memory banks won’t be entirely negative. Some poster mentioned that Nadal cannot be aggressive all the time, I think he meant against a player like Djokovic.

Since Nadal’s aggression against Djokovic seems to be jump started by the threat of defeat – he then seems to go into automatic warrior mode – he may have to work on producing more controlled, less emotionally generated aggression. Easy to say, and whether that is possible or not, I don’t know.

Michael Says:


I hope Nadal will find ways to resolve Novak’s dilemma else we will have Novak dominating the majors even more than Roger and Nadal in the coming years. All credit goes to Novak who has been able to break the duopoly of these two legends. Finally, we have a man who has dared to challenge the hegemony. Roger is getting old and Murray is a choker in slam finals. It is only Nadal who can give a fight, but he has lost the battle of mind. Whether he will able to recover, nobody can tell. But I will never underestimate Nadal. He can well bounce back and surprise everyone.

Tennislover Says:

Grendel – I agree Djoko- Nadal rivalry is slightly more complex. However, it is surface-dependent imo. I think that the match is totally on Djoko’s racket on any kind of hard court especially if it is not a very hot day. He becomes an even bigger favorite if the match is in the evening. I think it is now safe to say that he is an absolute beast himself physically and mentally. This is what I wrote the other day regarding the final:

Nadal’s effort was indeed a huge one and he still came up short. Djokovic did not play his best tennis consistently at any point during the second week. He was still good enough to beat Murray and Nadal who were arguably playing close to their best. Of course it helped that all of his last four matches were in the evening.

Nadal can hope to do better on clay and grass though especially if he is in top physical shape but I don’t think that is easy for him to maintain now. He almost succeeded in grinding Djoko down but he was fresh here. I am surprised some posters are saying that Nadal was aggressive right through the 5th set. There were many moments when it appeared as if Nadal was playing points only with the goal of tiring Djoko out. I think this was a mistake and backfired as Djoko kept getting his nth wind.

The serve was indeed impressive but the monster off-fh, which was so good against Fed and Berd, was not as good or frequent and that was largely due to Djoko’s ability to pin him to his bh effectively. We must also not forget that Djoko puts Nadal under more consistent pressure than anybody else. He is a human being and even he will crack. That comment by Nadal about Djoko’s ROS says everything.

Wog boy Says:

I was trying to read between the lines what Novak said this morning, my understanding is :FO, Olympic Games, 2 other GS, Masters and the rest and in this order of importance. But I think FO and Olympic games are #1 and #2 on the “to do” list. If he is short with points he can do Asian tour at the end of the year end get some extra points.
If he can finish this year as #1, he couldn’t started better, he is going to put himself where he belongs, top shelf of the best players ever to play this little ball game and rightfully so.
And we will see after ………

Rodger Says:

We can discuss many thing but the facts is the facts.

Novak played 2 very hard matches in 5 sets with currently 2 best players besides him.

He had very big problems with brething since he have asthma all the life.

He have 1 day shorter rest for the final.

Still he beat Nadal and prove that he is by 2-3 steps infornt of next best tennis player Rafa.

Novak Djokovic is the one and only.
He have will, power, technique and everything that complete player have to have to be the no.1 in the history.

His time has come and now he will rule for long time. Longer than Federer.

So wait and see how all tennis records will be broken by Novak, including Pete Sampras record for longest no 1.

My prediction.
This year Novak will take all 4 grand slams and will have longest wining strike in the history of world tennis.
Also he will take gold on Olympic games.

Daniel Says:

I think they gave an instruction to the line judges, in doubt called out, the player will challenge and if he is right they will replay the point. This is the firts toruney where the player were challenging and being right all the time. Every line ball was being called out, and it hurt the attackers, like Fed and Djoker. The BVrazilian TV commentors were saying this.

1 – Regarding the point when Nadal complained: he hit a second serve close to the baseline, which even he thought could be out, Djoko made a moan and had to strech to reach the ball and Rafa hit a forehand out. Nadal thought Djoko stoped the point thinking the ball was out.

2 – Regarding the challenge Nadal did in his own serve. Nadal hit a firts serve in, but close to the serve line, Djoko hit a backhand winner. In order to not give the point and moral to Djoko, Toni made a signal to Nadal with his fingers, saying out, out. This was pathetic, Nadal than challenge his onw serve, contesting the good call, in, just to see if by luck, the serve was out and he had to play the point again. It was GAMESMANSHIP, of the worst kind and Djoko comaplained a lot. Since it was a one hit shot, serve and return, it seems you could still have time to challenge a ball before the last shot, tje return.

The serve was good and Nadal lost the point and my respect once again in a match. It was Bizarre, and cowrad thing to do. His game is so, I cabn return everything that he didn’t want to conceed a perfect return winner shot to his opponent. Aftar that, Djoko had set point in the game (2-5 second set Nadal serving), lost his chance and got broken the next game. But justice prevail and he broke to sela the set 6-4. This definitle messes with his mentalk focus and maybe it was what Nadal wanted.

Skorocel Says:

Daniel: Did uncle Toni really do that & Rafa obeyed? Well, there goes the “humbleness” & “fair play” of Rafa, LOL :-) Frankly, after seeing what these 2 did to Federer in Monte Carlo 2006, I’m not even the least surprised…

Ajet Says:

”2 – Regarding the challenge Nadal did in his own serve. Nadal hit a firts serve in, but close to the serve line, Djoko hit a backhand winner. In order to not give the point and moral to Djoko, Toni made a signal to Nadal with his fingers, saying out, out. This was pathetic, Nadal than challenge his onw serve, contesting the good call, in, just to see if by luck, the serve was out and he had to play the point again. It was GAMESMANSHIP, of the worst kind and Djoko comaplained a lot. ”

If that were so, then I would not blame Nadal for such gamemanship. he’s after all like a kid to tony. what else will a kid do if his parents themselves teach them such classless acts! Nadal am definitely sure is one of the best players, fearless human being who has every courage to speak his heart out if necessary and is the right mix of humbleness and champion’s arrogance(that he aptly displays during matches); but it’s toni nadal who tries teaching rafa such ridiculous and devious tactics to score points over his rivals, and rafa somehow follows it! thus i’d rather blame tony for his gamemanship and crooked attitude than putting all blame on rafa. Rafa’s a young guy after all, and i can’t criticise him for obeying his uncle. but it’s the uncle who gotta give up his craftiness and unfairness!

grendel Says:

Daniel – there is a huge amount of inconsistency among the umpires. Some ludicrously late calls for hawkeye are allowed. It is a grey area, but the rule surely could be tightened a bit.

“Toni made a signal to Nadal with his fingers, saying out, out.” You must have eagle eyes, Daniel. How can you be sure which point Uncle Toni was referring to? I’m not saying you are wrong, the picture does look a little ambiguous.

But let’s assume Nadal was indulging in gamesmanship. Well, he does do that, we know that, but so do they all. In cricket, the Australians (the supposedly “fair dinkum” down to earth straight as a die Aussies) always used to try and put off an incoming batsman, by teasing him, mocking, insulting him etc – it was called “sledging”. I assume it still goes on, and it’s not just the Aussies who do it.

Djokovic has long been known for gamesmanship. He has tidied up his act, of course, but some of this half dead one moment brimming full of life the next has got to be a little bit suspect. But not wrong. Gamesmanship is built into sport, and would probably be a bit duller if it was somehow ruthlesssly outlawed.

Take this tourney – Tomic definitely called for Hawkeye, his opponent Dolgopolov saw that and stopped the point. The umpire didn’t see and wrongly awarded the point to Tomic, who had quite simply lied. He did it in a rather engaging way – you’ll rarely see quite such a pantomine of innocence – but even so.
And then Kvitova. She hit a ball on the double bounce, and made as to carry on. The umpire spotted it, however, and called it. Kvitova also put on the air of baffled innocence, though not too strongly I noticed.

I think in a strongly physical sport, a bit of what you might call argy bargy is to be expected.

jane Says:

Wog Boy, ESPN UK mentioned the Nadal challenge on his own serve. Somehow I missed it during the match, so this was how I found out about it. I have the match recorded though so will re-watch it, maybe on the weekend. Here what they said:

“Nadal challenges…Nadal
With Nadal trailing in the second set, the Spaniard was prepared to try anything to claw his way back. When Djokovic hit a blistering return winner, Nadal challenged the call on his own serve in a hope of replaying the point. It was to no avail, as the serve, like the return, was spot on.”

jane Says:

As the video shows, the serve was indeed very close to being out. I guess they’d've replayed the point if it was out. Not sure, but I assume so. Nadal did challenge right away after the return. The camera does show Toni pointing out, but it’s unclear if he gestured before or after Nadal challenges. Anyhow, it is perfectly legal for a player to challenge his own serve. But I agree that the umpires should just determine a consistent timeframe.

Daniel Says:


“You must have eagle eyes, Daniel. How can you be sure which point Uncle Toni was referring to? I’m not saying you are wrong, the picture does look a little ambiguous.”

My ESPN in Brazil showed it immediately, cutting back and forward to Nadal, Toni, the umpire and Djoko after during the occasion. Toni was very aggitate thorugh the whole match (and he was right ot it, every coach sensed it was THE SHOT to turn the rivalry). When Nadal broke Nole in the fifht, He got on his feet and lool like an actor on a stage reciting Shakespeare, of so much instructions he was giving Nadal. Both comentors were pointing this several times and they like Nadal a lot. To me when I say his poinitng his finger to up to Nadal, it was just Bizarre. Maybe that’s why Djoko replied so intensily after Nadla challenged, You see when your opponent look to his box and than move his head to umpire and challenged. Low move to me, regardlees if it is permited or not. It’s kind of this attitude of: No one can hit a clean winner through me!

Daniel Says:

And grnedel he did look to his box. Usually when a player “receive” a winner, at least me, you turn your head to not look at your opponent. Winners after all means: Suck it, you won’t reach this ball. It is a bully shot, only lost to a smash:)
He loked immediatly to Toni as if, what can I do when a guy return a crosscourt backhand winner out of a first serve wide in the ad side hit by a left?!?!?!

You are right that Djoko sometimes got into some of this, and it’s like the saying “one knowsn his own kind”. And that pissed the hell out of him.

Daniel Says:


The gesture was before, the camera only showed it later, as an editing problem, similar to movies when you have 2 action happening at the same time. They shoed it to us beacuse they have a camera man filming the players boxes at all times, just to catch this things. Actually, nowadays the TV coverage is awesome, we would totally lost this wacthing it live in Melbourne (yeah right, as if none of us would kill to be there!!:)

By the court postion Nadal was close to his box.

grendel Says:


“When Nadal broke Nole in the fifht, He [Uncle Toni]got on his feet and lool like an actor on a stage reciting Shakespeare, of so much instructions he was giving Nadal.”

That’s delicious. Devious fellow, old Toni. Whenever Nadal’s opponent does a very good shot, the camera turns onto Toni and shows him applauding. And the commentator generally says something like “pure class”. I have always assumed that Toni is actually genuinely applauding, but in the light of what you say, one has to wonder a bit. He will certainly be well aware that the camera is on him when he is applauding, and there is not the least doubt that Uncle Toni is very conscious of public relations. On the other hand, he comes from a world of sport where there are unwritten codes,, and it is probably the case that to a degree, he is sincere.

b.t.w. this business of looking to the box for info on whether the ball is in or out. It’s very common, Henin did it all the time, but you see it a lot – and the fact remains, the people in the box have little better idea as to whether the ball is in or out than anybody else. They frequently get it wrong. So I think we can safely say – since we are in Shakespearean mode – that it is “much ado about nothing”.

Yes, Daniel, you are right, Djokovic was livid. It is not diffcult to imagine why.

Kimmi Says:

jane – “As the video shows, the serve was indeed very close to being out. I guess they’d’ve replayed the point if it was out.”

if it was indeed out, they would have played second serve.

Daniel Says:

Yes Kimmi, and that was what Nadal wanted. But the problem is, none question your own first serve, because you always want to play with your first serve. Since Djoko got the return, Nadal wanted to play a second serve to avoid giving the winner. If the umpires did’n't called it was good. It is a situation where is a breach in Hawkeye. It shouldn’t be used for players to try to benefit from it. If Nadal didn’t know Djoko would return a winner, he would never challeng his won first serve. No one will ever do it. Imagine if Djoko hitted the net, Nadal would have challenge and say, no my firnd nole, I think this serve was out and I will risk lose a challenge for you dear fried! My a%&$. Thta’s why it’s gamesmanship, but an allowed one since you can challenge your own shot, to try to benefit the most out of the system.

Kimberly Says:

Didn;t have the energy or heart to do my grandslam tournament summary yesterday so here it is:

Things we learned at the Australian Open, Notes and Highlights:
1. Samantha Stosur is a choker. Murray playing at Wimbledon is nothing compared to the pressure clearly for Stosur playing in Australia.
2. Fernando Hotsauce, blowing a two set lead. Not impressive.
3. Ryan Harrison takes a set off Murray (no one else does for a looong time)
4. Christina McHale gets a few wins.
5. Djokovic hands out more early round bagels.
6. David Nalbandian/Isner match line calling no challenge drama. Worst call ever. Or at least until Rafa match with Berdych.
7. Azarenka Sharapova handing out bagels.
8. Marcos Bahgdatis racket smash.
9. The Tomic Hype grows as he beats Querrey and the other Junker.
10. David Ferrer Ryan Sweeting 5 setter?
11. Serena Williams just looks sloooooow against Makarova. Huge shocker upset.
12. Na Li loses 4 match points and the match.
13. Kvitovoa spotty play in round 2 v. suarez navarro but then looks strong in v. ivanovic and others.
14. Lopez takes out Isner and with that all Americans before the 4th round. Mardy Fish cannot play on Blue Clay of the Australian Open harcourt and breaks colino6 bracket and heart.
15. Lleyton Hewitt, Roddick forced to retire, beats Raonic, and takes a set off Novak.
16. Tomic not ready for Federer. Got sliced and diced.
17. Same old same old, Rafa Lopez, yawn.
18. Somehow Nishikori beats Tsonga, while we laughed at a posters suggestion that the exho result could be telling, uhhh, it obviously was. And turns Murray’s tough draw into a relatively favorable one.
19. Berdych Rafa, nice match, horrible calls.
20. Big Boy Del Potro not ready to play with the big boys.Federer dissects him.
21. Ferrer-Djokovic, breathing issues?
22. Murray Nishikori, yawn.
23. Wozniaki loses #1 rank.
24. Best womens semi-final lineup in a long time
25. Well, the men its the usual suspects, big 4 again.
26. Clijsters shows up flat and loses to Azarenka.
27. Petra shows up spraying and loses to Sharapova.
28. Fedal. Hype. Drama. Rafa wins goes to 4th straight final.
29. Djoko/Murray. The match nobody cared about until it was played and was fabulous. Lendl impact will remain to be seen but Murray hopeful.
30. Womens shrieker final a non-event. COngrats to Azarenka.
31. Mens Final—instant classic even if the author’s favorite came out on the wrong side. Great great match making it the longest final in grand slam history and leaving fans wondering if RAFOLE will have another show in Roland Garros. The beast’s home. The beast looking to beat Bjorg. The Djoker looking for the Djokers Wild Slam and Career slam.
32. Trophy cermony both were brought chairs as they were both cramping horribly and could barely stand up.
33. ESPN2 encore of the mens final was scheduled to begin before the match actually ended.

—extra notes
linescalling atrocious
court so slow

To be continued in Paris……

dari Says:

Can you add to the list “welcome back to the top 10 JMdP!”

Wog boy Says:


After everything settled and I had first night of good sleep in a while I can say I agree with you. Nadal and his team desperatly wanted to win and were ready to do anything to get there and I mean anything. You are right about one camera that is filming coaches all the time and when ever they see something fishy they replay immidietly. That was the case when Nole had problems against Ferrer, his coach was puting his right index finger behind right ear trying to tell Ferrer which way to serve and play, they showed it immidietly on big screen in Rod Laver arena.
Something that I never said on this forum is that I was huge Nadal fan until WTF 2010 and his match against Novak, that is first time i realise that Nadal’s humbleness is fake. At least Federer is not pretending, he is who he is, whether you like it or not, I don’t like it but have huge respect for the people who are what they are.
I am not saying the other players are saints or coaches but whenever they show Novak’s box and I look at Marjan Vajda the poor man looks like somebody who desperatly needs hug;-(

grendel Says:

Daniel – on reflection, I didn’t read your posts properly, but in any case, your post to Kimmi clears it up. There is no doubt that Nadal was acting in accordance with the rules, but against their spirit. Taking advantage of a loophole, you might say.It’s a bit desperate rather than a big deal – though definitely annoying. And I doubt if Nadal is worse than most.

This business about Nadal being “humble”. To me, he’s almost like someone with two personalities, and I wouldn’t be surprised if a lot of champions are like that. I suspect offcourt he really is quite unassuming – I have no inside knowledge, of course, but you get this impression. On court, he is transformed, and becomes a kind of winning machine – in this situation, anything goes. That’s partly what makes him so effective. That famous focus is perhaps acquired at a certain price.

Wog boy says:”I look at Marjan Vajda the poor man looks like somebody who desperatly needs hug”. Yes, he looks like a rather loveable teddybear. If he needs a hug, I’m sure there would be plenty willing to give him one…..

goat galz Says:

It’s ironic that Novak Djokovic will be the protector and defender of Roger Federer’s 16 slam record. Roger won’t win another so I am on the Nole bandwagon. I also know Roger secretly thanks Novak. This whole scenario is screamingly funny.

ta ta dolls

Daniel Says:

Actually goat galz,

It is relaxing, for a Fed fan point of view. And I found amusing the feeling it all got to me that I really do want Novak to win RG this year, always liked his tennis and Murray (although don’t like his 3 other old on court persona), but lately I am cheering a lot for them, kind of preparing ground for when Fed lives, tennis goes on!
Since Djoko may not have the years needed to surpass Roger or Nadal, he could at least have the Djoko Slam, a feat no man has doe since 1969, not even Roger nor Nadal. He deserve it for hang in for so many years and now becoming this monster. I don’t recall when was the last time he lost a 5th set in his career?! Last 2 Slams were 3, 2 semis and 1 final.

Daniel Says:

Fed leaves..

jane Says:


I think it was versus Melzer FO 2009, the last time.

Wog boy Says:

I just read nice article: “Anatomy of a sporting torture chamber” in The Daily Telegraph -tuesday, january, 2012
It is worth reading it to see what happend with body and mind of these gladiators after six hours. University of Victoria senior sports lecturer Dr Rob Aughey and AIS recovery physiologist Matt Driller are talking about that. One thing they said is that this match was equal to running two marathons (84km).
I am bad in sending those links but I am sure you can figure out and find it, it is worth, trust me.

Wog boy Says:

Tuesday, 31 january, 2012

Michael Says:

Does not by winning Roland Garros, Novak will complete the Grand slam. Ofcourse not a calendar Grand slam. And what can be more gratifying than defeating Nadal in the finals there. Even in 2011, Novak should have achieved that, but Roger played his best and spoiled Novak’s dream run.

Nims Says:

Guys, I don’t think Roger cares too much about Rafa beating his GS record, or he is too confident he cannot reach it. Else he would have tanked his match against Novak in FO Semis, knowing Novak had a better chance of taking out Rafa in the finals than Roger himself.

Skorocel Says:

„Something that I never said on this forum is that I was huge Nadal fan until WTF 2010 and his match against Novak, that is first time i realise that Nadal’s humbleness is fake.“

What happened in that match, Wog boy? Just curious…

carlo Says:

Is this the article Wog boy?

Very good, thanks. Interesting about the estimation of them losing 3-5 kg during the match. That’s a little higher than I’d have guessed. wow.

Wog boy Says:


It was his reaction when Novak had problems with contact lenses, his grimacing, dirty looks towards Novak, complaining to umpaire etc, I wouldnt go deeper in explaining. It looked like his life depended on that match.That is only me, that is the way I pick, or I don’t, somebody to follow.


Yes that is the one, though it is slightly different in the paper.

jamie Says:

Will the good times continue in Djokovic’s career in 2012?

Our astrologers have prepared a chart for Novak Djokovic on the basis of his birth details to analyze the planetary positions and see how will be the year 2012 for Djokovic’s career.

As per Djokovic’s birth details his moon sign is Pisces and he is undergoing major period of Ketu and minor period of Venus. The position of Ketu (which gives wisdom and creativity) in the 10th house (indicating career) from his ascendant is highly favorable for Djokovic. Venus, (which gives enjoyment and pleasure) placed in the 5th house (indicating sports) from his ascendant is also a positive sign for him. This indicates the year will further boost career prospects of Djokovic.

Moreover, the position of Jupiter (indicating money) in the 2nd house (representing monetary and material assets) from Djokovic’s Moon sign till May 2012 will bring him good financial gains.

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