ATP Finals Draw: Federer Gets It Easy, Djokovic Will Have To Duel Murray
by Sean Randall | November 3rd, 2012, 10:27 am
  • 108 Comments

The ATP Finals groupings are out and defending champion Roger Federer might not be No. 1 anymore but he got the great draw in Group B. The six-time champion Federer ended up paired with David Ferrer, Juan Martin Del Potro and Janko Tipsarevic.

That leaves in Group A with a very strong foursome with Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray, Tomas Berdych and JW Tsonga.

As for some initial picks, Group A is clearly stronger. Any of the four could get hot and make a real run and even win the darn thing. I think Murray will scratch and clay his way out and then a lot depends on Djokovic’s state of mind with his father’s illness. If Novak’s focused I think he gets through, but I doubt anyone goes undefeated in that group. Djokovic is the only player other than Federer to have won this title.

In Group A, it’s hard not to see Federer emerging. The Swiss has won 10 straight matches at the event and while I think Del Potro could him next week, I don’t see him dropping two. With Tipsarevic the weakest guy that leaves Ferrer and Del Potro. If Del Potro is on song I tip the scale his way. The Argentine has played well in the event before reaching the finals in 2010 when he beat Federer in the round robin before losing to Nikolay Davydenko in the final.

Matches begin on Monday.

The groupings:
GROUP A
Novak Djokovic
Andy Murray
Tomas Berdych
JW Tsonga

GROUP B
Roger Federer
David Ferrer
Juan Martin Del Potro
Janko Tipsarevic


Also Check Out:
Federer, Nadal Advance In Paris; Djokovic v Isner As All Top 7 Seeds In Action Thursday
Roger Federer: “I Like Tough Draws, I Don’t Shy Away From Them”
Will Federer Play Paris? For Now He’s In The Draw Along With Djokovic And Murray
Juan Martin Del Potro Targets A Grand Slam Title This Year
Murray Drops Out Of Top 10, Cilic Clinches London Finals Alternate Spot

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108 Comments for ATP Finals Draw: Federer Gets It Easy, Djokovic Will Have To Duel Murray

gannu Says:

hahaha feddy bear got lucky,,,i am coming to c u my GOD ;-) Better win all the matches that i see otherwise i can go mad…I scream when i c u on TV..wonder how i am going to react in the stadium!!!


Brando Says:

WOW, group A is the group of death. Such a strong group.

I can see one of Murray or Djokovic not making it.

One of them shall lose to the other, and then they have to beat an inform Berdych and last year’s RU Tsonga.

Very tough ask.

Then in SF, most likely either a match ready federer or 2009 RU and top indoor player, Del Potro.

Extremely tough.

Federer is my pick based on this draw!


Daniel Says:

Agree, Fed couldn’t get any easier, maybe chaming betweeen DelPo and Tsonga. But e avoid the 2 most dangerous player who beat hit in last 2 big tourneys, Murray and Berdych. I think the only certainty we have now is that Fed is im the semis, aything else can happen.


El Flaco Says:

Fed got lucky, but if he makes it out of group play as either #1 or #2 his semi will be tougher because he will probably play either Djoko or Murray. It’s kind of like having an easier draw up to the quarters, but then having a tough match-up for the semi.


the DA Says:

Okay, this thread popped as I posted the schedule on another thread. here it is again:

Mon: Murray v Berdych (1.45pm) then Djokovic v Tsonga (7.45pm)

Tues: Federer v Tipsy (1.45pm) then Ferrer v Delpo (7.45pm)


Margot Says:

Yi, yi, yi! Impossible to say who’ll make it out of group A.
Fed and Delpot from B?


the DA Says:

margot – I’m (kind of) comfortable with Andy v Tsonga. Berd & Nole it’s 50/50. Just hope the home support lifts Andy’s game. I remember dreading his match vs Soderling in 2010 and he surprised the hell out of me. So you never know :)

Ideally, it would be Nole/Andy and Fed/Delpo making out of the groups. What SFs those would be.


Giles Says:

gannu. If only your Feddy Bear had played Paris!! With that draw looks like he is going to win WTF hut hey, who knows!!


Brando Says:

@Giles:

LOL, now that you mention it had fed played Paris and considering the WTF draw, he may have ended up YE no.1!


Giles Says:

@ Brando. Absolutely! !


jane Says:

the DA “Ideally, it would be Nole/Andy and Fed/Delpo making out of the groups. What SFs those would be.” = Agreed.


Brando Says:

Wow, Janowicz is in the final!

What an achievement by him!


the DA Says:

Vamos Daveed! I hope he finally gets his 1st Masters title tomorrow. I think Jerzy shore will be cancelled.


Brando Says:

Ferrer v Janowicz it is!

I am predicting Jerzy, unfortunately, for the win.

His game is just way more suited to this surface, and he is riding a wave of form with nothing to lose at all in the final!


the DA Says:

Jerzy was starting to look a bit fatigued today (he’s played what, 6/7 matches?). Against the Indefatigable Ferrer, I don’t know that he’ll have enough left in the tank. We’ll see. I’m going with Daveed for purely sentimental reasons – this is probably is best ever chance to get a Masters.


Brando Says:

@the DA:

would love it if daveed were to win.

Hope your right.


Wog boy Says:

Go Daveed !!!

Didn’t know this thread is out so I posted what I think about JJ run on the other thread, doesn’t matter.


racquet Says:

Andy and Nole practiced today at the 02:

http://tinyurl.com/c54rm9u

Apparently Lendl got on the court and had a brief hit with Nole. 5livetennis took a pic but it won’t upload. I’d like to find/see that.


Alok Says:

It’s very difficult for a qualifier to win an MS tournament. They have to play 3 more matches than a top player. When one of them breaks through it makes for more discussion. Not to mention that there is hope for new talent to go up in the rankings, and for us to see some diversification in title holders. Nowadays, it’s the same few who win, which makes things somewhat too predictable.

When Fed used to win consistently, many complained of the predictability of the outcome of tournaments, and expressed their desire to see up and comers win. Now that we’re seeing it’s others who are dominating, the talk of predictability is but a mere whisper, or none at all. Can’t have it only one way peeps.


Alok Says:

Can’t see that practising Djoker/Lendl to be a good thing for Djoker. Lendl is able to feel out Djoker’s present form, which wouldn’t be helpful when he plays Murray.


Alok Says:

Can’t see that practising Djoker/Lendl to be a good thing for Djoker. Lendl is able to feel out Djoker’s present form, which wouldn’t be helpful when he plays Murray.


racquet Says:

Found it! Lendl hitting with Novak as Andy takes a breather.

http://tinyurl.com/cl9gn4o


Dave Says:

This blog’s informative headline “ATP Finals Draw: Federer Gets It Easy, Djokovic Will Have To Duel Murray” follows on the heels of earlier headlines that were never used:

- Wimbledon Draw: Nadal Gets It Easy, Federer Will Have To Duel Djokovic

- US Open Draw: Djokovic Gets It Easy, Federer Will Have To Duel Murray

- Shanghai Draw: Djokovic Gets It Easy, Federer Will Have To Duel Murray

- Paris Draw: Djokovic Gets It Easy, Federer Will Have To Duel Murray

****

Let’s clear up “Djokovic’s state of mind with his father’s illness” as an excuse for Djokovic potentially losing at the World Tour Finals.

- Novak Djokovic’s father was hospitalized 12 days ago on Tuesday, October 23 at the Clinical Center of Serbian hospital for pain in his legs and back. The hospital spokesman Drago Jovanovic said that it was shameful and sad that some news media arbitrarily released information about their patient and publicized an inaccurate diagnosis. Djokovic’s father simply had a bacterial infection and his condition improved to good and stable condition with just two days of antibiotic treatment, by Thursday October 25. His father was never in critical condition, did not have sepsis or SARS or any life threatening medical condition, as some Serbian media claimed and so did tennis writers.
http://tinyurl.com/bp38rel

- Since the Djokovic family has provided no details, I have to believe the hospital spokesman. My guess is that Djokovic’s father could have been treated as an outpatient, given antibiotics and sent home – like most poorer people are treated. However, like any rich celebrity family, when Djokovic’s father showed up at the hospital emergency with an illness, they hospitalized him for treatment and observation as a precaution. It’s just a fact of life even in Western countries that doctors and hospitals treat rich patients better.

- If his father was in critical condition or in any danger, Djokovic would not have flown early to Paris last Wednesday October 24 (or was it Thursday October 25?) to start practicing for Paris due to start seven days later. In any case, rich Novak could have visited his father whenever he wanted by private plane since it’s just a 90 minute flight between Paris and Belgrade. By the time Djokovic flew back to Belgrade to visit his father last Sunday October 28, his father would had six days of treatment and should have been recovering well. If his father was acutely ill and in danger, why would Djokovic wait six days to visit his father?

- Thus it was amusing to see several tennis writers — from Tennis Magazine’s Steve Tignor to the Independent’s Paul Newman – jumping to use Djokovic’s father’s hospitalization to make excuses for Djokovic’s loss at Paris as well as potential loss at World Tour Finals. Most referred to one Serbian news source (Blic). Newman even claimed Djokovic’s father had the potentially deadly SARS illness, even though Blic just claimed it was ARS (not SARS — S is for Severe). Strange that no one mentioned Serbian sources that contradicted such overblown reports.

- Instead of clearing up the overblown misinformation in the press, the Djokovic family lawyer told all news media to stop revealing private medical information about Djokovic’s father and not to ask any more questions of the family. The Djokovic family made a vague statement to the press that “Srdjan has pulled through, the worst is behind him”. Djokovic and his family quietly milked the publicity even though they knew that the story had snowballed in the press and was giving Djokovic an excuse to lose at Paris and the WTF.

****

Though Djokovic is the only player other than Federer to have won the World Tour Finals, Novak got lucky in 2008. That year No. 3 Djokovic did not have to face the other top four players: No. 1 Nadal (did not play), No. 2 Federer (injured, lost in round robin) and No.4 Murray (off-form, lost semifinal). Djokovic scratched and clawed his way to winning the 2008 WTF by beating a young No. 9 Delpo (before he became THE Delpo one year later), No. 5 Davydenko (twice, including the final) and No. 7 Gilles Simon (in the semifinal). In the round robin Djokovic lost a three setter to No. 6 Tsonga, and three of his five matches were three setters.

Outside of that one WTF title, the statistics suggest that Djokovic is vulnerable at next week’s World Tour Finals year-end world championship. That’s because Djokovic’s worst surface is indoor hardcourts and, on average, his worst career performances in the bigger tournaments have come at the indoor events of the World Tour Finals ad Paris.

(a) Djokovic’s worst surface is indoor hardcourts: Novak’s winning percentage on indoor hardcourts is approximately 71.8% — this is significantly worse than his outdoor hardcourt 85.2%, grass 77.0%, and clay 76.7%. (Stats are from the ATP website — Fedex Reliability Zone in the Scores & Stats section)

(b) Djokovic’s World Tour Finals career-winning percentage is a pathetic 50% (9-9) in five appearances (in comparison, Federer is 39-7, best in ATP history with more than 17 wins). In three of his five career WTF appearances, Djokovic failed to get out of the round robin: 2007 (lost all three RR matches), 2009 (won only 1 RR match), 2011 (won only 1 RR match). In 2010, Djokovic lost in straight sets to Nadal in the RR and again straight sets to Federer in the semifinals. Murray has played four WTF events – one less than Djokovic’s five career WTF events – yet Andy has a 7-5 win-loss and has the second best indoor match winning percentage behind Federer. (Stats are from Wikipedia’s pages on Novak Djokovic career statistics and Andy Murray career statistics).

(c) The Paris Masters is Djokovic’s worst Masters 1000 tournament as his career-winning percentage is just 65% (11-6). Djokovic has lost in the second or third round (i.e., he lost his first or second match) in six of his eight career Paris indoor events. In the past three years, he lost early in 2010 (3R), 2011 (QF), 2012 (2R). (Stats are from Wikipedia’s pages on Novak Djokovic career statistics).

All of Djokovic’s five titles this year came on outdoor hardcourts (he has failed to win even the smallest title on clay, grass or indoor hardcourts). Just because Djokovic has done well does not mean he will do well on indoor hardcourts. On indoor hardcourts, Djokovic is simply more vulnerable to more players. In Paris, Djokovic lost even to Sam Querrey, whose career indoor 53% puts him at only No. 43 among active players. On indoor hardcourts, in 2011 Djokovic lost to No. 32 Nishikori, No. 17 Del Potro, No. 9 Tipsarevic and No. 5 Ferrer. In 2010, Djokovic lost to players such as No. 34 Llodra and No. 20 Youzhny as well as Federer and Nadal. On indoor hardcourts, Djokovic is more vulnerable to losses in conditions he tends to win on outdoor hardcourts (Paris is Djokovic’s first loss this year in his first match, first loss after winning the first set as well as first loss to a player outside the top 20). His matchpoint-saving luck and overconfidence do not work so well on indoor hardcourts.

Almost every player who qualifies for the WTF knows they have a chance to beat Djokovic on indoor hardcourts (e.g., Ferrer has a 2-0 record over Djokovic at the WTF, including a straight sets win last year). Djokovic’s round-robin group is tougher than Federer’s group. The only silver lining for Djokovic is that he got Berdych, who has been inconsistent in fall and whom Djokovic owns on hardcourts (even indoor hardcourts of WTF), instead of the in-form Del Potro.

Murray’s 78.1% career indoor record (nine indoor titles) is second only to Federer’s 80.7% (20 indoor titles). Murray should get through on the back of defeaning home crowd support. But it’s a toss up whether Djokovic, Berdych or Tsonga get through. I’m convinced that Tsonga or Berdych has really found their form and consistency this fall yet, so we’ll see next week.

****

Federer won the 2010 World Tour Finals and 2011 World Tour finals without dropping a match. It was actually in 2009 that Delpo beat Federer in three sets in the (almost) meaningless third round robin match — after Federer suspiciously lost after he guaranteed that he topped the group by taking a set off Delpo. Was it coincidence that Federer losing to Delpo knocked off Andy Murray from advancing out of the round robin?

While it’s possible that Delpo could beat Federer at next week’s WTF, let’s not forget that Delpo with his A game barely beat an unfocused C+/B- Federer last week at Basel. What’s virtually unmentioned outside Switzerland was that Federer was in an unhappy, unfocused state of mind throughout Basel. Each day got worse, as Federer had to deal with fallout from Basel tournament organizer Brennwald playing hardball dirty games over negotiations on Federer’s future appearance fees to play Basel (that’s what Fed got for playing Basel at a paltry $500,000 appearance fees since 2009) as well as fallout from Wawrinka’s untactful comments regarding Federer’s refusal to commit to Davis Cup next year (that’s what Fed got for giving the honor of carrying the Swiss flag at Olympics to Wawrinka, instead of more deserving Swiss athletes). There is nothing worse than to feel under siege in your own home event.

Had Federer been in a better state of mind in his home tournament, not only would he likely have beaten Delpo’s A game, but he might have done it in straight sets. If that happened Federer possibly might have gone Paris if he felt healthy and on a roll.

Don’t forget that David Ferrer is an excellent indoor hardcourt player with a very good record at the World Tour Finals (where he has beaten both Djokovic (twice) and Nadal. And Ferrer has a 5-2 record over Delpo (JMDP last beat Ferrer in 2009) and 3-1 over Tipsarevic. So Group B is a toss up between Federer, Delpo and Ferrer. If Federer keeps wasting his time practicing with Tim Henman, it might be Delpo and Ferrer… hehe


Alok Says:

Apologies for double post, only clicked once, I’m positive.


the DA Says:

@ racquet – nice pix. I don’t think mat4 will be thrilled by them though :)


the DA Says:

” after Federer suspiciously lost”

omg, something I can agree with you on.

“Was it coincidence that Federer losing to Delpo knocked off Andy Murray from advancing out of the round robin?”

No. It was payback for Shanghai the previous year, imho.


volley Says:

>>If Federer keeps wasting his time practicing with Tim Henman, it might be Delpo and Ferrer

very amusing. actually he has also been hitting with Tecau. not sure if that’s any better.


Dave Says:

And while Djokovic and Murray practice with each other and sharpen each other’s game even though they are in the same group… Roger Federer wastes his time practicing with his buddy Tim Henman at the O2, a long retired player whose game and shots are nothing like Djokovic, Murray, Delpo or Berdych. Ugh. At Shanghai, Federer practised with Jarkko Nieminen. Paul Annacone should be getting appropriate practice partners for Federer, instead of allowing this nonsense to happen. Federer is rich enough to hire two or three quality practice partners.
http://tinyurl.com/bf4q45c


laslo Says:

alok
I don’t really think Lendl hitting with Djokovic matters. Lendl can see with his own eyes how he played in Shanghai.


Alok Says:

@laslo: Yes, Lendl can see, but now he also has a feel. Going by the reason some gave for Djokovic’s loss, perhaps it’s why Lendl wanted to get a clearer view. I’m never in favor of the top guys practising with each other, much more the coaches of their opponents.


subo Says:

the news should be rafeal nadal has got a silent doping ban from the itf you are coverup for nadal just like the itf his name right now should be mud he is a cheater


Wog boy Says:

Goodness gracious, some people just cannot get over it, that Nole is going to finish year as Numero Uno and not Roger, I can feel their pain all the way to Down Under.

As for YEC, looking forward to few good matches, don’t expect Nole to win but do expect him to give his best.

Second year in a row #1, good enough for NO1E fans.

P.S. If only Roger played Paris masters :)))


Dave Says:

The DA: I agree with you on the payback thing.

Volley: Fed practising with Horia Tecau. Ugh as well.

****

Alok: You asked in another blog: “Are Stan and Fed not friends anymore? If they still are, i would assume stan’s leaking of that info would definitely drive a wedge between them.”

The leaking of info about Fed’s appearance fees to the news media actually had nothing to do with Wawrinka. That’s a different issue relating to negotiations between the Basel tournament organizer (Roger Brennwald) and Federer over Roger’s appearance fees to appear in future editions of the Basel event. The problem here was due to the dirty hardball tactics of Brennwald who acted in bad faith: he leaked the info on Federer’s appearance fees to the news media to create public outrage to force Federer to lower his price expected. While the majority of Swiss people polled support Federer, there are many welfare-minded Swiss people who weren’t happy (not realizing that Brennwald and the Swiss Indoor tournament owners benefit financially from Federer getting paid less). The negotiations had happened during French Open six months ago, Brennwald broke it off because Federer’s manager wanted to double the fee to about $1 million (still less than what Nadal gets for Halle or Bangkok) and the negotiations were supposed to resume after the season ended. But in the middle of the Basel event, the tournament organizer Brennwald leaked details of the negotiations to the news media and painted Federer as a greedy person even though probably over 60% of Basel event’s revenue is due to this star attraction (Federer) pulling in spectators and sponsors. It’s no coincidence that Basel and Dubai are the two ATP 500 events with the biggest TV revenue, probably due to their association with Federer consistently playing there. Switzerland is one of the richest European countries per person, and Basel is a major Swiss center for pharmaceuticals, chemicals and banking industries — so they can afford to pay Federer. Brennwald has been lowballing Federer for years, and Federer has unfortunately allowed this to continue for too long. Meanwhile, Roger has been sacrificing Paris in order to play Basel, which is a mistake in my opinion.

As for Wawrinka, that issue related to Federer not willing to comit to playing Davis Cup next year (Roger never commits so early). The Swiss newspaper Aargauer Zeitung originally reported Wawrinka (after his first round defeat at Basel to Davydenko) shrugging his shoulders and saying tersely “I’m accustomed to (Federer being non-committal about playing Davis Cup next February)”. Wawrinka added that he can be relied upon to play Davis Cup (but he did not mention that he gets paid to play Davis Cup, and this makes up 15% to 20% of his income). That news article about Warinka’s comments was under the fictional sensational headline ‘Wawrinka criticizes Federer: “I do not understand Roger” ‘ (Wawrinka did not actually say this, but the title madeit appear he did). Several Swiss news media repeated the sensational headline along with Warinka’s untactful remark, portraying Federer as selfish. But no news media asked Wawrinka a simple question: how could Wawrinka claim to be ‘accustomed’ to Federer not playing Davis Cup when Roger has actually played the maximum last four Davis Cup ties for Switzerland in 2011 and 2012 (against Portugal, Australia, USA and Netherlands)?

Regardless, during the entire week of Basel the biggest Swiss newspapers had negative stories about Federer “hardly ever” playing Davis Cup. After Warinka’s comment became public, the Swiss Federation officials and Marc Rossett (former Swiss player) also chimed in to get their sound bites.
http://www.blick.ch/sport/tennis/federer-unter-druck-id2079482.html

This view was nonsense because Federer has played the third most Davis Cup matches among Swiss players (after Jakob Haslek and Heinz Gunthardt) in Swiss Davis Cup history.

There is a simple reason why the Swiss Federation and Wawrinka want Federer to play more Davis Cup: Money. When Federer plays Davis Cup, they sell more tickets at a higher price so there is more revenue for the Swiss Federation as well as to pay players like Wawrinka more money. They don’t care that, at his 31-years age, there are trade offs: if Federer plays Davis Cup he has to give up ATP events that earn him points for his ranking.

The problem with Roger is that he refuses to hire a publicity/PR manager to deal with these issues, the way Nadal and Djokovic do. Instead of setting the record straight and going on the offensive, Federer just keeps quiet, absorbs the flak and defends Wawrinka to try to defuse the situation (he said he and Wawrinka have spoken privately, but it’s okay for Wawrinka to have said what he said publicly). Not once did Federer say something like: I’m 31 years old, I’ve played 4 Davis Cup ties in a row, I’ve sacrificed my No.1 ranking because I played Davis Cup for Switzerland while Djokovic, Nadal and Murray did not play Davis Cup this year. By the time I end my career the only great player who would have played more Davis Cup than me would be Stefan Edberg. Why should I keep wasting my time playing Davis Cup when Warinka is so inconsistent? So STFU, you silly Swiss people who expect free handouts from me. Instead Fed remains the diplomat and keeps quiet, allowing the misperceptions to continue.

I don’t think Federer was happy with Wawrinka, but this is not the first time that Wawrinka has said untactful things. I doubt Federer would take it too personally and probably won’t break off the friendship. After all, his coach Severin Luthi is also the DC coach. But surely Federer was disappointed that Wawrinka did not cover for him after giving Stan the honor of carrying the Swiss flag at the Olympics. That honor should have gone to other more deserving Swiss athletes. Instead Wawrinka repaid him with this comment and tried his hardest to beat Federer at Shanghai, when Roger could have used a break given the death threats and his No.1 ranking being on the line.


skeezer Says:

“Goodness gracious, some people just cannot get over it, that Nole is going to finish year as Numero Uno and not Roger”

Uh? Who said that?


skeezer Says:

Can’t wait to read all the “lucky” comments for Fed for the umpteenth time….

……..wait…hold on…….just a sec……………..just read one.


Wog boy Says:

Skeezer,

It is not Skeezer related, you are safe.

Godfather 3

“I was out…..”


Alok Says:

@Dave, thanks for the reply. IMO, Stan seems to have some serious jealousy problems, but it’s only my opinion.

Some claim that Stan rolls over for Roger, but it’s not so,just the opposite. Stan does his darndest to beat Fed, and puts in more effort when they play, than when Stan plays another top player. Again, just my opinion.


Wog boy Says:

This drow is easy for Federer in sense that he shoul make SF, with no problem same as Delpo, it is clear cut that neither Ferrer nor Tipsy can do match but that where it stops. SF can be any of four from the other side, I would give Tsonga least chances, and if he wins he might play Delpo again or any of the other three and they all beat him this year, so yes RR easy but not after that, and he is not in form that he was last year after winning Basel and Paris and coming into YEC full of confidence. I don’t know why but I can see Delpo getting into the final, the other finalist will be one of four, Roger, Andy, Nole, Berdych.


volley Says:

@ skeezer

to be in the group with one other slam winner and 2 others who have never beaten him, nor reached a slam, with a combined h2h 31-3

v.s.

the other group with 2 slam winners and 2 slam finalists who have all beaten each other, and a combined h2h of 27-13

yes, one could consider that Fed has a bit of “luck” on his side. the only disadvantage he has is playing the last RR match and SF on consecutive days.


racquet Says:

Some nice pics taken of Andy, Nole & Roger
looking very dapper at the WTF Gala tonight:

http://tinyurl.com/c2q7z57

http://tinyurl.com/btgxpza

and all of the 7 together:

http://tinyurl.com/cfpdp7c


alison Says:

Raquet just love a man in a suit,without nitpicking Andy should have the bottom button done up on his jacket,and it looks like Roger has his hands in his pockets,which puts me off a bit,in the 1st picture,the one of them all together is lovely,have to say Janko is a very handsome guy but looks strange in a suit to me.


alison Says:

Have to say how great it is to see Andy whereing a poppy in aid of rememberance day.


alison Says:

^Wearing not Whereing^.


jane Says:

Nice pics racquet; thanks for posting!


Alok Says:

Fed is deserving of an easydraw after the tough ones he’s been having.


laslo Says:

alok
I am hopeful that Roger can win WTF again. If not him then I will cheer Novak.


Michael Says:

Group A looks very tough, while Roger has it relatively easy in Group B. Most probably I pick Novak, Murray from Group A and Roger & Del Potro in Group B in the semis. There is not much pressure on Roger. He already has a record setting six world tour finals. Seventh will be an added bonus. That being said, I tip Novak to win this one.


Wog boy Says:

Wow Michael,

Another drink on me if you are right, actually make it double shot:)


Nims Says:

I think Del Po / Murray have better chances of winning this one. Ferrer may susprise too. He did excellently in 2007 WTF, where only Roger could stop him in the finals.

I doubt Roger would make to semis even with this draw. I don’t think his mind is on tennis. He may just want to wind up and get ready for AO 13. Ferrer may get his 1st win over Roger. I expect Ferrer and Del Po to get through to semis. It should be Murray and Novak from other side. Except Roger, I don’t see Berdych beating any of the Top 4 in HC.


skeezer Says:

“bit of luck” vs. “Lucky all the time” are 2 different animals, and there are idiots who think Fed is the latter. Dream on. Jealousy leads to hate, hate leads to bitterness and a closed heart, blaming “tiredness” of it all which some posters say “tired of Fed winning”. How sad.

Fortunate, yeah. Lucky? That is a cop out by haters.

Fed was fortunate in this draw(notice Delpo beat him the last time they met). But those who quickly forget the numerous draws where novak/fed had to meet in the semis to meet rafa’s cupcake draws (2010). Draws that were suppose to be random at 3/4. Pfft.

Funny, in the end all works out, no?


Margot Says:

@ the DA
What! What! U r “comfortable” when Andy plays Berdych?
Eek, lucky you…;)
@racquet
thanx for those, wub
@ Dave
Agree re Fed practising with Tiny Tim, seems very strange. Just b4 Wimbledon final practised against Santoro, a much better idea.


the DA Says:

@margot – no not Berdych, Tsonga.


Sidney Says:

@Dave
I feel your pain.


Giles Says:

Luck or no luck, watch Fed lift the WTF trophy and more than a million pounds. This trophy belongs to him!


Margot Says:

@ the DA
I fear Big Bird much more than anyone else in Andy’s group tbh. Indoors really should suit his game. Perhaps the audience could all agree to fan themselves at the same time…;)I was very surprised that he made an early exit from Paris, unless of course it was “tactical.”
Isn’t group A 1,3,5,7? B 2,4,6,8? Or am I missing something.If yes, does make perfect sense.


Polo Says:

“Good luck is a lazy man’s estimate of a worker’s success.” —Anonymous


volley Says:

yes, terrific hard work getting that draw.


skeezer Says:

^jealousy gets you nowhere.

#WhosBad


Sienna Says:

Whoever of the three major winners wins WTF is the best player of 2012.
With WTF they all have a legit shout at being the best player of the year.
Rankings are lesser of a milestone then winning the big tourneys. Although Djoker is ahead in points on Fed and Andy, if one of the them wins WTF Novak surely cant touch either of them.


trufan Says:

Fed really got lucky with the draw here. He needs it at this age.

Ferrer will be wiped out by the time he reaches London. Tipsy had to retire in his match on friday, in the third set. Delpo played 3 consecutive weeks and admitted he was really tired – two days of rest is not going to cure 3 weeks of tiredness.

On the other side, they are all fresh and raring to go.

I hope Fed can win all his 3 matches so that he faces the second best player from the other group and reaches the final. Then anything can happen.

Regardless of ranking, if Fed wins the YEC, the year belongs to him. And 7 YEC titles would be a record that might stay a long long time.

In Paris, if Ferrer wins the title, he could displace Nadal from the no. 4 spot at the AUS Open!! Wow…


volley Says:

@trufan

completely agree.


the DA Says:

“Fed really got lucky with the draw here. He needs it at this age.”

Yep.

Meanwhile, vamos Daveed!


Polo Says:

People who call others lucky are most often the losers.


the DA Says:

Yes!! Ferrer takes the 1st set.


skeezer Says:

@polo

completely agree.


Sidney Says:

Luck of the draw is part of tennis. Always has been, always will be. Accept it and move on.

Or watch golf! Everybody plays against everybody in golf tournaments. Exceptions are very few matchplay tournaments.

Fed’s group does appear weaker than Nole’s, at least on paper. However, they still have to play, and who knows what will happen. Nole and Andy did lose in early rounds of Paris, so maybe their group isn’t much better, given their current form.


scineram Says:

I hope DelPo wins this. If not then Jo, TBird or Rog.


volley Says:

@sidney, agreed. nice to see a voice of reason. trufan is a diehard Fed fan but at least he’s a realist. can’t understand why so many let emotions rule their thoughts.


alison Says:

I dont think there is any such thing as an easy draw at the WTF,its the top 8 players of the year,these players have been consistent all year round, any one of the players can beat any one of the other players on any given day,personally its all about whomever plays better on the day,i wonder how many people thought Daveydenko would win the title in 2oo9?anyway just looking forward to an open and well contested tournament with the best player winning.


skeezer Says:

Sure “luck” can be seen at times in every sport, that was never my point. Rafa had some easy draws in 2010. The point is Fed ( nor Rafa who got 11 )didn’t get 17 Slams and GOAT based on “luckiness”. It’s not emotional, it’s just @&:(&)!! plain fact.

Trying to play the “emotional” card is just another loser excuse.


madmax Says:

I think it is pretty scary to think that anyone who plays a top 8 player has it “easy”, or an “easy draw”. They all have to play each other and every match is going to be difficult for every player. And that’s the long and short of it.

Gannu, hopefully I see you there! Try and enjoy the experience. It is an amazing stadium with lots of atmosphere and the crowds are just incredible, especially when the players walk onto the court. I won’t say anymore as it would spoil the experience for you. Enjoy!


mike Says:

Roger deserved the luck for once

do ppl want to be reminded of his draw at the US Open? or the fact he had Murray in his half in Shanghai and Paris?

btw Tipsarevic and Ferrer, didnt they both beat Djokovic in London last year

besides all of that, if Federer plays as poorly here as he did in Basel, i can still see him failing to progress from the pool.


volley Says:

@skeezer, how on earth are the draws Rafa had in 2010 relevant? and why, when the topic is Fed, do you bring him into the conversation every chance you get? this about the WTF, here and now. i bet you nole or andy would swap with him in a heartbeat.

the fact that you’re ranting about 17 slams and GOATs demonstrates a lack of rational thinking and more of an emotional reaction. it’s bizarre to get so worked up about an innocuous opinion about a draw.


trufan Says:

Hey, I am huge Fed fan, and I think he has been rather unlucky with draws in the past. He certainly deserves his 17 slams, and perhaps a couple more if he had been lucky earlier.

However, lets be honest here. This is the softest draw Fed could have asked for at the YEC. No Murray, No Berdych, No Tsonga. Just a tired Delpo, a tired ferrer, and a partly injured Tipsy.

Not saying he doesn’t deserve it! Its about time the old man got SOME luck….

Had he been “lucky” in his draws in the past, he would have had 20+ slams by now.


TJ Says:

I love Polo’s statement that people who claim others are lucky are total losers!

You can see the proof right in front of your eyes with losers like volley et al!

trufan, can you please also tell your opinion rafa and his draws? specifically the usopen 2010 draw?

I like this logic that you are a true tennis fan if you post and whine about easy draws federer has, but god forbid, you mention the easy draws rafa has got, you are ranting.

Djokovic had murray on his side during olympics and cincinnati. and fed had him on his side for USopen and shanghai. now it’s djokovic’s turn! hardly unfair. so stop whining you losers!

Federer is a guy who bageled nadal 6-0 at year ending championship. If you think he’s the God on Grass, you haven’t seen how excellent he is indoors. his last 3 sets against nadal read 6-1 6-3, 6-0. That is about the same level of domination nadal showed against federer in 2008 FO. Actually, if you look at the % points won, fed has done better @ london indoors than nadal @ paris indoors.

Another thing, just look at Federer’s domination of the year end championships. He’s won the event by blanking 5 top 10ers – 4 times. I doubt if anyone in history of the championships has even done it once?

He is 4-0 against rafa, 8-1 in sets against rafa. He is as dominant at the year end as rafa is on clay.


TJ Says:

trufan, who do you think has been more lucky with the draws in their career – nadal or federer?

I see people have already asked volley to STFU! LOL! you have to put a dog where it belongs! If you let it come and bark in public, it will eventually be chased off by the people.


TJ Says:

If playing top 10 players is easy, why have this event at all?

We can have dumba55es like volley pick the toughest opponents for Federer and have them play him. Fortunately the tennis bosses are not as messed up in their heads as some m0r0ns whose only goal is to see federer not win a tournament!

If murray and djokovic are that good, they can both still make the semis and force federer to beat them back to back and win the title. [just for the records, they did this in wimbledon and federer came up trumps. in 2010 year end championships, djokovic and federer asked federer to beat them back to back and federer obliged. [If I am not mistaken, federer beat murray as well in round-robin, that year! I challenge you to find me a tournament where nadal, murray or djokovic won by beating the other 3.

any answers?


volley Says:

@trufan >>However, lets be honest here. This is the softest draw Fed could have asked for at the YEC.

precisely. all the lengthy rants about past draws and matches are irrelevant.


rogerafa Says:

All the luck in the world will not save Roger if he continues to play the way he has been playing recently. In best of three, all these players should have a decent enough shot. Roger drew Delboy instead of Tomas and I think both are equally dangerous for him. Both JWT and Janko have struggled recently and neither player’s form should scare the others. Andy is the only player who could have made it ‘tougher’. However, it can be argued that David and Delboy are in very good indoor form whereas none of the players in the other group has shown that kind of indoor form. Roger, imo, needed better scheduling ‘luck’ at this age because he will be playing three consecutive matches assuming he plays five matches. OTOH, he still remains, at least on paper, a pretty safe bet to make it to the semi final irrespective of the draw. He will likely face either Andy or Novak in his last two matches and that is just brutal. Even if Andy and Novak play a tough RR match, they would not be tired due to a day’s rest before the semi final. Imagine a grueling Andy-Novak encounter either in the semi final or at the RR stage the day before the semi final. That would almost certainly kill their chances of winning the WTF.

No player except possibly David should have a fatigue excuse for the WTF. Of course, all of them will be very tired after a long season. I think normal service will resume and one of the top three should win this after the Paris aberration.


skeezer Says:

volley

Just using Rafa ( another former #1 ) as an example, that’s why. It is relevant, unless mentioning RAFA hurts your feelings.

You lost me on your weak era bs.


jane Says:

Hmmm, that’s a tough question. There are not many opportunities in which any of the top 4 players might have to beat 3 of the other top 4 to win an event because of the way the draws go normally. WTF is definitely unique in this sense.

I closest I can think of is when Nole beat the top 3 in succession to win Toronto in 2007. Mind you that was Roddick (3), Nadal (2), and Fed (1), not Andy M, but Nole also beat Nalby on that run. He’s beaten 2 of the 4 a number times, like IW, Roma, AO & USO, 2011, AO 2012, etc.

Andy’s beaten Fed and Rafa in Canada 2010, and Nole and Fed Olympics this year.

Rafa’s beaten Nole/Fed or Nole/Andy or Andy/Fed on clay back to back a number of times. He also beat both Murray and Fed on his way to the 2008 Wimbledon title.

So plenty examples where one guy has beaten 2 of his main rivals to win as he’d have to because of the draws, presuming the other guys got through too. They have been amazingly consistent and great at driving each other to improve.

But Fed’s 2010 WTF was unique – beating Andy, Nole and Rafa. Andy M was actually ranked 5th at the time but Fed beat Soda, too, who was ranked 4th, so it was a standout result.

Too bad about Soda; I wonder if he’ll ever come back. :/


volley Says:

@rogerafa, you make some good points. i stated previously that where it gets rather tough for Roger is the SF stage, he will be at a slight disadvantage because his last RR match and the SF are on consecutive days. and he potentially has to play 3 matches on consecutive days to win.

@skeezer, nope still makes no sense to mention Rafa (who has been m.i.a. since June) regarding this WTF.

>>You lost me on your weak era bs<<

awww :(


Dave Says:

What luck? This is the World Tour Ffinals world championship, not the Australian Open or US Open. The WTF is basically an indoor, top ten competition. Thus Group B is arguably the tougher group based on the key measures relevant to the World Tour Finals: (a) their recent top 10 results, (b) their recent indoor results, and (c) their past WTF results.

(A) In terms of top 10 winning results over the past 52 weeks, both groups are relatively balanced:
- Group A (average 10.75): Djokovic (4), Murray (5), Berdych (13), Tsonga (21).
- Group B (average 10.75): Federer (2), Ferrer (10), Delpo (14), Tipsarevic (17).
Group A’s Tsonga has the worst record against top ten players this year: 1-10 (Tsonga’s only win was against blue-clay knee injured Delpo on Rome clay, after Delpo had twice beaten him on hardcourts ealier in the year). Even Group B’s Tipsarevic has a better record than Tsonga. It’s a toss up in terms top 10 stats between Delpo and Berdych, but Delpo is the hotter, more consistent and more dangerous player at the moment. David Ferrer has a decent record against top 10 players (e.g., he has twice beaten Djokovic at the Worl tour Finals), is dangerous on indoor hardcourts and brings confidence from winning Paris indoors. Note both top 10 rankings do not include the latest Paris results.
http://www.atpworldtour.com/Reliability-Zone/Reliability-Versus-Top-10-Current-List.aspx

(B) In terms of indoor winning results over the past 52 weeks, Group B has the better performers:
- Group A’s indoor (average 21.5): Berdych (5), Tsonga (13), Djokovic (21), Murray (47).
- Group B (average 10.75): Federer (1), Delpo (3), Ferrer (6), Tipsarevic (33)
Data came from the ATP website: go to the Scores & Stats, Fedex Reliability Zone, Index Category (Indoor) and Player Category (Current). It’s possible some indoor results may include a small amount of indoor clay matches played at Davis Cup. Note indoor rankings do not include the latest Paris results.

(C) In terms of past WTF results, both groups are relatively balanced when you take out Federer and Djokovic (though those three Group A players have played more WTF matches than their counterparts in Group B):
- Group A (23-22, 51%): Murray 7-5 (58%), Djokovic 9-9 (50%), Tsonga 4-4 (50%), Berdych 3-4 (43%).
- Group B (48-20, 71%): Federer 37-9 (85%), Ferrer 6-6 (50%), Delpo 4-4 (50%), Tipsarevic 1-1 (50%).

For Djokovic, arguably Group A is the easier group. Djokovic is career 9-7 against Murray, 6-0 over Tsonga in recent matches played, and career 10-1 against the mentally inconsistent Berdych. Since 2011, Djokovic is 4-1 against Ferrer (but lost both of their career WTF/indoor matches to Ferrer), 3-2 against Del Potro and 4-2 against Tipsarevic. Getting David Ferrer (who has a proven 2-0 record over Djokovic at the WTF — Novak did not win a set or even get to a tie-break) rather than Murray may not be a good idea.

The only seeming advantage Federer has is that local favorite and second best indoor player Andy Murray is in the other group — but this may not be an advantage if Federer plays him in the the knockout semifinals while Djokovic has the option to lose to Murray during the round robin. Between Murray and Djokovic, Federer would probably prefer playing Djokovic in the semifinals.

In any case, what luck? Fact is, Federer has had the bad luck of playing 238 top ten players (158-80 win-loss) in his career — no one else in ATP history has played more than 195 top ten players (Sampras, 124-71). In addition, since Nadal flamed out at Wimbledon, Federer has had the bad luck of getting Murray or Djokovic in his half at more tournaments — including Wimbledon, US Open, Shanghai and Paris — so it is time for Federer to get a draw without Murray in his section.


skeezer Says:

@Dave

Absolute great post. The jealousy of some posters knows no bounds. Weak era, lucky, roofs, etc. It’s all the same BS for basicly the same reason, just twisted differently to sound different.


Brando Says:

Fed is lucky with this draw- since you rather have his draw than Novak’s.

HOWEVER, fed was the unlucky one of the 2 (him and Novak) in that he was the one who got Muzza at Shanghai, USO, and was scheduled to also face him at cincy (not sure on that one, but i think so anyhow).

Either way, it levels out in the end- and fed was due a break with the draw.

Ultimately, WHENEVER ANY player gets a relatively nice draw it’s not their fault, so I don’t understand the complaining about it.

It’s usually SOUR grapes when anyone knocks a player because of their draw!

Fed’s got a nice draw for WTF, BUT it doesn’t mean he wins automatically.

Let’s just enjoy the matches and see what unfolds……


skeezer Says:

Brando

Nice post!


Dave Says:

skeezer: You’re right. People who are parroting that Fed got a lucky draw are basically trying to rationalize either (a) their mindset stuck on the presumption that this is a typical outdoor hardcourt event and/or (b) their jealously or dislike of Federer and/or (c) their support for a favored player. It’s irrational.

This is the WTF, an indoor, top 10 event. Results on other surfaces do not matter much here. On indoor hardcourts, it does not matter much who is in Federer’s group. If he is in form, Federer would be the favorite to beat anyone (from Berdych to Murray to Djokovic). With Fed’s 37-9 WTF record, it is nonsensical to portray that Federer is lucky with whoever he has in his group (though whoever faces Federer could claim to be unlucky — this might be the more rational argument). It’s almost as silly as saying that Nadal is lucky because he got players XYZ instead of ABC in a clay event — it really doesn’t matter who Rafa gets on clay.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrdFEJTr5-o

****

Alok: I’m not sure if Wawrinka is jealous of Federer, I just think Stan is a little immature and untactful at times. Though it’s probably annoying to be overshadowed by Federer since Wawrinka is in the ballpark of the next two greatest Swiss players after Federer (Marc Rosset and Jakob Hlasek) — so if Fed wasn’t there, Wawrinka would be the star player. Yeah, I think Wawrinka does put in more effort to try to beat Federer (sometimes too much effort to the point he psyches himself out). This year Wawrinka (who is without a coach) has been getting help from Fed’s coach Severin Luthi as well as Federer himself in practice sessions. So I agree with your opinion that Stan doesn’t roll over for Roger. I think Federer sees himself as a sort of big brother to Stan and has been supportive of Stan through some of his personal problems.

****

Margot: Federer warms up for his matches with almost anyone who’s available (though using Santoro to warm up for Murray may actually have some merit). However what I meant was using an appropriate practice partner to practise, train and prepare before a big tournament — not warm up for matches during the tournament. Two different types of sessions.

****

Sidney: “I feel your pain.” No, you’re just imagining that I have pain based on your speculations and presumptions because that is your way of dealing with the facts I presented. I had already considered the possible outcomes a long time ago.


jane Says:

“and was scheduled to also face him at cincy” – Brando, Nole was actually. I think Murray has shuffled between them since Rafa’s been gone: Olympics, Cincy = Nole / USO, Shanghai = Fed / Paris = Fed and then WTF = Nole. So it’s been pretty even as to which side Muzza has been on. Rafa being missing just makes it all the more pronounced.


grendel Says:

jane – “Too bad about Soda; I wonder if he’ll ever come back. :/” See following link:
http://www.tennisworldusa.org/Robin-Soderling-Still-no-date-for-my-comeback-articolo6569.html

It reads kind of sadly, doesn’t it, and yet there’s a great human story here. Who has not had the experience of pushing on too hard at the outset of a project – perhaps through impatience or even lack of belief (so you despairingly lash out, half knowing no good can come of it). But it looks like Soderling is painfully coming to terms with the reality of his illness and subsequent rehab.

Even if he never makes it back to his former high level, if he can recover sufficiently to lead an active life, he will have won an important victory, the most important of his life probably, and I am sure this will be a transforming experience.

As for this business of luck: of course it occurs all the time, in tennis as in life. Two points:one,you can often be surprised about where it pops up. A supposedly easy draw can turn out to be difficult for a variety of circumstances – and vica versa. Two, over a player’s career, luck tends to even out – easy to miss if you are determined to spot a pattern.


Alok Says:

@Dave, I agree with you on Stan and Roger seeing himself as a big brother. Stan’s lucky to have such a good mentor. I see Stan as an extremely mentally complicated individual, who does not seem to know what he wants. His marriage and sunsequent divorce following so quickly after he wed his baby’s mother, bears out my thinking on Stan’s fragile mentality.

On Fed’s draw, I think he has two of the most in-form players, DelPo and Ferrer. Ferrer’s MS win will definitely work for him in confidence, as opposed to him being tired. Adrenalin will be pumping at an all-time high. He has No.4 within his grasp should he do well at WTF.

On the matter on whose side Murray falls, well that usually is the problem for the No.3 player. Only Nos.1 and 2 are set for a certainty, and the rest are just the luck of the draw.

I don’t see why it’s so much of a big deal that Murray is on Djokovic’s side. If he wasn’t on that side he’d be on Fed’s side, which means he has to be on one side or the other. I think Murray’s success at the Olympics and USO is coloring some people’s thinking. Considering the many problems he has encountered after those victories on closing out of matches. It can be assumed that he’s not shown much consistency as a follow-up to his USO title, hence why would he make the other group more competitive. The two groups are about even IMO.

It’s funny how many are shifting positions on this draw and are rationalizing it as being somewhat fair. hehe


jane Says:

Thanks for that update grendel; it must be especially difficult for an athlete, when the body turns like that and so much of life until then has been about its strength and superiority. But life goes on, and Robin has much to be happy about too:

http://www.tennis.com/lifestyle/2012/10/robin-soderlings-baby-love/39817/#.UJbnVZjN45Q


trufan Says:

TJ,

To answer your question directly – I think Nadal has had MANY soft draws in the past. I have written that many times. And have been heavily criticised for it!

But this is a soft draw for Federer, no doubt about it.

And yes, by no means does it imply Federer will win it. He still has to face at least one, potentially two players from the opposite half to win the title. This just allows him an easier path to the semis.


alison Says:

Nice picture of Robin and the baby so cute,i dont think anyone would blame him if he decided to call time on his career,after all he must have enough money to set his family up comfortably for the rest of their lives.


skeezer Says:

How to smash a racket, and how the pros do it. Proper tecnique is important ;)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hfPNROxLgss&feature=youtube_gdata_player


volley Says:

Steve Tignor: “Of the top two seeds, Djokovic has been handed a tougher group than Federer.” “Matchup-wise, Federer would have had trouble drawing up a better group for himself. When someone comes in with a 32-3 record against his competition, you have to like his chances of advancing to the semifinals.”

Brad Gilbert: “Of the 2 groups for London the A group is the group of death.”

Neil Harman: “If I was The Fed I think I would be rather pleased with that draw”

Mike Dickson: “Tough draw for Muzzard next week, giftwrapped for Fed…”

these journalists and ex-players are jealous…..lol


Alok Says:

It’s not rocket science to see that Fed is heads above his competition which means any draw he gets will be considered soft. He’s a 17 GS winner, and has won WTF 6 times, which puts him way above every other player.

Brad Gilbert has never won a GS title, and never has so much been at the WTF.

Brad likes Nadal and Djokovic. JMac (not in the above group) likes Djokovic.

Neil Harman is a Brit, and Tignor is pretty much anti-Fed which is why Nadal fans love him. IMO, they are all biased.


Polo Says:

These guys are the best eight players this year. The easy draw is a fallacy. You still have to play your best to beat any of them. Anybody who plays lackadaisically will lose to anybody who plays at the best of his ability.


Polo Says:

Oops! I just found out that madmax made a similar statement about the top 8 earlier. Sorry for the repetitive post from me.


grendel Says:

@skeezer 6.35 – yeah, that’s quite funny, nice deadpan action. The most thorough, and therefore enjoyable, racket smashing I can remember seeing occured only recently – Djokovic smashing his racket in Shanghai (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0PZW1RX4WsU).

Now Djokovic, you will note, is not a disciple of your man. He is a firm adherent to the holding- onto -your -racket- as -you -smash party. He feels, and here I am in agreement with him, that in order to exert maximum damage it is essential to maintain a firm grip of the racket as the process of destruction ensues. And the reasoning is twofold. For whilst an absolute demolition of the racket is certainly aimed at in the strictly limited time available (the racket abuser is obliged to maintain half an eye on that umpire fellow even as he appears to the onlooker to be utterly absorbed in his task), there is a further goal which is perhaps even more important.

States of mind immediately preceding racket annihilations are generally fairly uniform – in short, extreme anger holds the stage. The reason – I submit – for the spectacular nature of Djokovic’s parting of the ways with his racket lay in the fact that whilst getting a bit of a drubbing from Murray, he continually maintained a calm and unworried looking facade. Many tennis players like to attempt this – Borg and Federer are perhaps the best known adherents of this doctrine – and it always incurs grave suspicion in the minds of the thinking spectator. What thunderstorms, he can’t help wondering, are quietly brewing beneath the surface. In the case of Djokovic, we soon found out.

He attacked his racket with a kind of gay abandon, although his expression was stern throughout, as befits the performance of a solemn and even dignified ritual. The sense of release emanating from this ceremonial act of violence was palpable. We watched in awe as Djokovic applied himself sternly to his assignment, pummeling the racket to the ground with repeated, vicious stabs,precisely as if he was hammering a nail into the foreheads of all those who had tormented him over the years. And we sensed something wonderful taking place – an act of restitution and healing.

Once Djokovic had obtained a satisfactory degree of on the one hand, dismantling of the racket and on the other, relief for himself, he stood up, suffused with a kind of gloomy satisfaction. He dispatched the now defunct racket into the side of the court with a contemptuous flick.

Needless to say, Djokovic went on to win…..


skeezer Says:

“these journalists and ex-players are jealous…..lol”

So classic. Who said that? Its posters and crazed Fed haters who are jealous. You so made my case, these guys didn’t say Fed is overall “Lucky” either. YOU types say that.

Does he have the favorable draw? Yes. Is Feds GOAT career due to luck and a weak ERA? Absolutely not.


TJ Says:

” TJ,

To answer your question directly – I think Nadal has had MANY soft draws in the past. I have written that many times. And have been heavily criticised for it! ”

Eat that, you stup1d troll Volley!

I agree with you trufan! well said!

Please somebody agree with this troll and say federer is lucky to win 17 slams. please!


volley Says:

>>Does he have the favorable draw? Yes

there, that wasn’t so hard was it?


Polo Says:

volley, it would have counted if you had any credibility at all. What you said was nothing more than the sound of somebody who just passed gas.


skeezer Says:

grendel,

Most excellent analysis of Djoker smashing. What do you think of Nalbys racket tantrum at the linesmen box? Out of racket smashing form, or “fair play”?


grendel Says:

skeezer – the Nalby incident. Ah, now there, you see, you have a prime instant of the role of luck. Or ill luck in this case, for of course Nalbandian had no intention of injuring the linesman. Caught in the mists of a red rage, he lashed out regardless – and the rest is history.

You could certainly argue, mind, that Nalbandian must, at some level of consciousness, have known there was a human leg in the vicinity, human flesh subject to the normal feelings of pain if penetrated by wooden splinters. There is however a certain aloof quality to Nalbandian, he bears himself with a certain – ah – quasi aristocratic deportment, which precludes the immediate consideration of the comforts of those other than himself.

The bad luck consisted in the fact that Nalbandian just happened to be close to the linesman when the explosion occured.

Just imagine if out of the corner of his eye, Nalbandian had suddenly spotted the linesman. Would he have drawn back? If he could have fastforwarded to the future, and seen how the proposed strike would damage his career, prudence would doubtless have prevailed. But – since he couldn’t have done – we are left with an intriguing question….


MMT Says:

As for the matchup with Berdych and Murray, it’s impossible to say which Berdych will show up, but you can count on Murray to put in a good performance – good effort and fundamentals.

I think Berdych has quite a good record against Murray, but suprisingly he seems to do better against him on clay than other surfaces. Frankly, I don’t see him getting a result in this match. Fair enough he won Stockholm, but last week he put up a pretty poor performance against Simon, and he’s not the type of player to think his way through solutions that Murray will cause him.

The wild card is if Murray has some sort of ailment that distracts him – otherwise, I say Murray drops the first set working through the kinks/nerves/new surroundings, etc., and then rolls comfortably in the last two.


skeezer Says:

grendel,

Enjoyed that, thanks ;)…..and agree

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