Federer, Nadal in Action Next Week: ATP/WTA Previews
by Staff | February 9th, 2013
  • 52 Comments

ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament
Rotterdam, The Netherlands; Surface: indoor hard

Seeds: Roger Federer, Juan Martin Del Potro, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Richard Gasquet, Gilles Simon, Andreas Seppi, Jerzy Janowicz, Florian Mayer

Floaters: Gael “Force” Monfils, Nikolay Davydenko, Bernard “The Tank Engine” Tomic, Michael Llodra, Victor Hanescu, Viktor Troicki

Notes: Lotsa floaters and lotsa tricky opening matches, including (2) Del Potro vs. Monfils, (7) Janowicz vs. Hanescu then probably Llodra, (8) Mayer vs. Davydenko (then probably the Tank Engine), and (4) Gasquet vs. Troicki…Returning champs in the field are Federer (2012,’05), Llodra (2008), and Mikhail Youzhny (2007).

SAP Open
San Jose, Calif., USA; Surface: indoor hard

Seeds: Milos Raonic, John Isner, Sam Querrey, Tommy Haas, Fernando “Hot Sauce” Verdasco, Denis Istomin, Marinko Matosevic, Xavier “X-Man” Malisse

Floaters: Lleyton Hewitt, “Dr.” Ivo Karlovic

Notes: Not a real deep field, but some tough openers with (6) Istomin after a bye possibly starting against a pumped Ryan Harrison, and (3) Sam Querrey the same against former No. 1 Lleyton Hewitt, and (7) Matosevic against a motivated (WC) Jack Sock, and (5) Verdasco facing the winner of Dr. Ivo and (WC) Steve Johnson…first held in 1889, this will be the final year of the SAP Open as it’s been sold to outside-the-U.S. interests…Querrey (6-7) has a career losing record in San Jose, as does the X-Man (7-8)…The Bryan brothers, the top doubles seeds, are 7-9 career in San Jose…Everybody sucks in San Jose except the Canadian Raonic, who is gunning for his third straight singles title. Other returning champs in the field are Verdasco (2010) and Hewitt (2002).

Brasil Open 2013
Sao Paulo, Brazil; Surface: indoor red clay

Seeds: Rafael Nadal, Nicolas Almagro, Juan Monaco, Jeremy Chardy, Thomaz Bellucci, Fabio Fognini, Albert Ramos, Pablo Andujar

Floaters: David Nalbandian, Guillermo “G-Lo” Garcia-Lopez, (WC) Tommy Robredo, Horacio Zeballos

Notes: Nadal gets a bye then faces the winner of a qualifier and Ruben Ramirez-Hidaldo…openers of interest are (8) Ramos vs. G-Lo, (3) Monaco after a bye possibly facing (WC) Robredo, and second round (6) Fognini vs. Nalbandian, and (2) Almagro after a bye likely facing the hot-handed Zeballos…Nadal is making his first appearance at the event in eight years…Almagro is the two-time defending champ (also won in 2008), joined by former champs Robredo (2009) and Nadal (2005).

Qatar Total Open
Doha, Qatar; Surface: hard

Seeds: Victoria Azarenka, Serena Williams, Maria Sharapova, Agnieszka Radwanska, Angelique Kerber, Sara Errani, Petra Kvitova, Samantha Stosur, Marion Bartoli, Caroline Wozniacki, Nadia Petrova, Maria Kirilenko, Ana Ivanovic, Dominika Cibulkova, Roberta Vinci, Sloane Stephens

Floaters: Draw not out as of Sunday.

Notes: How can Azarenka avoid Serena this week? Early tank? Bad nail job? Pull out to cut an album with boyfriend? Amazing recovery for Stephens, who days earlier couldn’t play Fed Cup for the U.S. due to an ab injury…Li Na pulled with an ankle injury…Returning champs in the field are Azarenka (2012) and Petrova (2006).

Copa Bionaire
Cali, Colombia; Surface: clay

Seeds: Mandy Minella, Lara Arruabarrena Vecino, Alexandra Panova, Nina Bratchikova, Tatjana Malek, Edina Gallovits-Hall, Estrella Cabeza Candela, Sesil Karatantcheva

Floaters: none

Notes: The kind of field that makes you ask, “Is this an ITF event? A Challenger? A public parks event?”

 


Also Check Out:
ATP/WTA Previews: Nice, Dusseldorf, Warsaw, Strasbourg
ATP/WTA Previews: Soderling, Verdasco Headline Bastad
Querrey Back to Grass at Newport: ATP/WTA Previews
Radwanska, Tsonga in Action This Week: ATP/WTA Previews
2008 French Open TV Schedule

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52 Comments for Federer, Nadal in Action Next Week: ATP/WTA Previews

Tennis X guy Says:

Federer has a tough draw zemlja-youzhny-janowicz-tsonga-del potro.The first two rounds should be cakewalk but the last 3 will be anything but easy.Dimitrov-Tomic and Federer-Janowicz should be two very interesting matches.


Rogerisclass Says:

Roger seems to be getting some a tough draw again..

go Roger!!


tennislover Says:

Roger’s tough draw again!


Steve 27 Says:

If I am correct, Nadal won in Costa do Sauipe in 2005. So, he will try to win his first tournament in indoor clay.


Humble Rafa Says:

Hey!

I am playing tennis. You are moving on already to to the next tournament.


Humble Rafa Says:

tennislover Says:
Roger’s tough draw again!

The Arrogant One’s level has gone down. Hence the tough draws. Need to keep things in perspective.


Sienna Says:

HR try to take aim at youre own record!

You are playing in the minor leagues just because you want to crick the winning % up. You know you have zero chances in the tourneys where the realdeals are.


Humble Rafa Says:

You know you have zero chances in the tourneys where the realdeals are.

What has the Arrogant One achieved in real tournaments in the last year? Not much better than I have, even though I never played half the year.

People who live in glass house should not throw stones at other people.


alison Says:

Urgh Just to say good luck to both Roger and Rafa for the week ahead,Roger has a tough week,with some great players in that tourney,and Rafa is still finding his feet after such a long lay off,heres hoping they both go on to have a terrific week each,and go on to lift the trophys.


Rogerisclass Says:

Q. Both McEnroe and Agassi said in the World Team Tennis match this July that tennis right now at the top, men’s tennis is the toughest ever. Do you think you four guys are the toughest maybe in history in terms of competing against each other and winning events?

ROGER FEDERER: I’d say no, but I don’t know. Just because you look back maybe 15 years, then you have Sampras, Edberg, Becker, and Agassi, I don’t know who else. Those guys weren’t good or what? Do you know what I mean? You look back, further back, 20 years, and you have the Connors and the Lendls. Those weren’t good either? I mean, I don’t know. So for me I think that’s respectful.

It’s just different times and definitely more athletic, there’s no doubt about that. But then again we don’t play doubles. We don’t play mixed. Maybe we play less matches today because it’s more taxing, but we do play less best‑of‑five set tennis than they used to play. You can’t compare really,

but we have somewhat of a golden era right now. I feel that truly. It’s nice to see Andy making his move at the Olympics, nice to see Novak having an absolutely ridiculous year last year, and then Rafa and myself still being around. It’s definitely good times. Past that you still have great champions as well. It’s very interesting at the top right now, and the depth I think has never been greater than right now. There’s no doubt about that. But then best ever? The four of us? That’s a really difficult call.

http://richtweets.com/2sloc

I’m not greatest player – Roger Federer

“I don’t feel better than anyone, because we need past champions to pave the way for our generation and we have become very professional,” he said.

“They have led the way and inspired myself and other players to chase the big records out there.

“Back in the day they weren’t doing that, they were just playing to play tennis. Things have changed dramatically with the press reminding us ‘you should do this and win that and you’ll be considered the greatest of all time’.

“And anyway I don’t think you can compare different eras in tennis.”

http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/tennis/18764325

very humble Roger.

Nadal says that now is the highest time. And Nadal insulted the Sampras era?

Nadal fan’s arrogant are eternal as usual.


alison Says:

Rafa lost in 3 tight sets,TBH it was an achievement in itself to actually make the final on his 1st tourney back after 7 months,not too surprised as hes still likely to be rusty,never expected too much on his 1st tourney back anyway,hope he and Juan can take the title in doubles,hes nothing left to prove on clay anyway now,so good luck in Brazil Rafa.


Humble Rafa Says:

Bad day at the office. Some guy whose name sounds an item you eat beats me. Sucks to be me.

Now back to square 1. I am playing at the level I was when I was 12.


Humble Rafa Says:

All in all not so bad. I will keep working. Hard work and persistence solves all ills.


jane Says:

All in all it was a good week for Rafa; he did well in both doubles and singles and he’s back at it. Good for him and his fans.


Brando Says:

@Jane:

Thanks.

I think had he won, which naturally i would have liked him to do so, i think either he was going to get:

1- The ‘meh’ reaction because its clay, rafa, the field etc etc. Or

2- The hyperbole: he’s back with a bang, watch out field etc.

NEITHER would have reflected the reality of his situation accurately IMO.

IMO:

1- It’s a major PLUS that in his first tourny back he got maximum possible matches

2- That with his loss the media and tennis folks shall realize: the man’s coming back from a really long lay off. It shall take TIME for him to get back to former level!

Ultimately: upwards and onwards. Hopefully rafa gets more matches in at Sao Paolo.


Kimmi Says:

Congrats to zeballos for his first title. What was that year he won the new comer of the year? Was it three or four years ago..and then he disappeared. Good to see he wasn’t intimidated by the king of clay. Probably now he is starting to show his potential.

As for rafa, i wouldn’t worry too much about his first tournament back. Obviously it would have given him more confidence if he had won, but a final for his first tournament back is still a goo showing.

Lets see how he does in his next tournament, everybody will be watching him for sure.


Alok Says:

Good for Nadal to be in the final of his first tourney back. Hopefully, he’ll put some of his questions on how things will turn out for him when he plays. IMO, at least some of his confidence has to be restored, and due to that, his performance will be progressively bettered with each subsequent tournament he plays.


jane Says:

Makes sense perfect sense Brando: glad to see you’re so levelheaded and happy for you Rafa’s back; it must’ve been a long and difficult wait for his fans. And fans of other players are happy to see Rafa back too, me included. Even though i know it makes it tougher for Nole or Murray it’s good for tennis overall that Rafa is back.

And very true, Kimmi, it’s nice for Zeballos to get a title under his belt; maybe it’ll inspire him.


roy Says:

@Rogerisclass

do you pick cherries for a living?

enjoy roger’s game all you want, revel in his records even, but to claim roger federer is an example of humbleness?

this is a man who can’t leave the house without his own initials branded on his head, and passing the cult-wear out to every friend and family member.

this is the man who wore blazer and trousers to a grand slam final to glorify himself.

there has never been a bigger ego in the sport. never.

and anybody who has followed federer’s career from scratch, seen the vast majority of matches, seen and read the vast majority interviews, and watched his ostentatious posturing knows this all too well.


skeezer Says:

@roy

“do you pick cherries for a living?”

No, thats been your job, re read all your posts.


Rogerisclass Says:

@roy

The point which you are writing is what? branded? Sponsors, such as Nike, are making them. Players have a contract which wears it.

Before you say, I say. 15 jackets of Roger? It is also idea of Nike. Roger did not know it.

Nadal has brand of his mark. Nadal have hat. or, shirt of vamosRafa? or shoes of vamosRafa? or shoes of RG6? It is set to RG7 this year?

Djokovic wearing NOLE shirt.

———————————————–

Nadal wore the T-shirt ofthe history 7, after winning the victory in RG. And Nadal wore the T-shirt of the history 7, and did the chat with fan.

And Nadal exhibited that video all over the world.

Roger also won the victory 7 times in Wimbledon. And record of the 1st place was also made.
Moreover, record of the 1st place exceeded 300 weeks. etc. Roger performed what?

—————————————–

Nadal insulted the past time. That is arrogant and ego opinion. Nadal is blessed too much with the time of the slow present grass and a hard court.

However, Nadal looks down on the Sampras era of quick surface?

You should read Roger’s opinion.


Michael Says:

Alison, I see this loss of Rafa as not a very good sign. Remember in 2010 when he made that come back after that lay off, he was able to beat almost all the players except the top Five. But now this loss to a 72 ranked player should bother him. Ofcourse this is not the end of the world and Rafa lost the match by a whisker. But still it seems the invincibility of Rafa even on clay is coming into question.


Giles Says:

@roy. Spot on. Couldn’t agree more!! Does he even realise how ridiculous and out of place his blazer and trousers look?? #PoorFed


mat4 Says:

I just checked some stats at the atp wt site.

And it looked quite strange, when I saw: 1st serve points won — Djokovic, 8th, 2nd serve points won, Djokovic 1st, service games won, Djokovic 2nd. He is present on the return stats page too, but this looks like an aberration.

He changed his serve motion in the last two years. Since it is difficult for me to explain it, there is an article here —
http://www.optimumtennis.net/novak-djokovic-serve.htm.
But, nevertheless, this is the serve he used last year too, when we could notice improvements, but far from this. What else has changed?

Watching the matches, I have the impression that the new racquet made the difference: it allows more spin (more kick) and more precision. In his match against Berdych, e.g., whenever Djokovic added some spin in his FH (when the racquet finishes his motion over his head), Berdych missed the court.

I also think that, although Djokovic worked on this shot the last few years, this new racquet allowed him to improve his BH slice (it is now more than decent).

There were some problems with that racquet, too, and Novak made an unusual number of UE, when he was nervous, or under pressure, or when he just lost focus a bit. And he didn’t miss the court by a few inches, but by a few feet.

It is easy to understand if it was his first tournament with the new racquet (I believe he played the exos with it). But if he manages to control the new racquet the way he did with the previous one, we could easily have a Novak 3.0 this year.

Anyway, this is the first time I noticed so much improvements by changing the racquet. I wonder if Murray has changed his racquet too?


alison Says:

Michael personally i dont know,you could be right but it is 7 months since he last played,so its bound to take a little time,hes bound to be rusty,and like i say for hinm to still reach the final was an achievement in itself,and Rafa himself said it was more about playing,and that he wasnt expecting instantanious sucess,and neither were his fans,we will probably get a better indication the futhur the CC season developes,however be that as it may im enjoying him been back playing,if he going into a decline which happens to all players eventually then so be it,i will still enjoy watching him play win or lose,nothing lasts forever,hes done enough for me to be more than happy with his legacy even if he retired tomorrow,whatever will be will be,i will accept whatever happens either way.


Giles Says:

One loss after 222 days = a decline??? Who said that?


jamie Says:

Fedal have won their last slam already.

When all is said and done:

Federer 17 slams(no more slams for him)
Djokovic 14 slams(like Sampras)
Nadal 11 slams(no more slams for him)
Murray 8 slams(like Lendl)

You heard it here first.


jamie Says:

Yes, Djokovic will go down in history as the second best player of this era. Nadal is lucky that Murray is such a late bloomer or the Spaniard would end up as the fourth best player of this era.


jamie Says:

The upcoming slams this year will be supreme.

Nole wins RG and achieves the Career Slam and then Andy wins the Wimbledon/USO double.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pz4Gd_u98ok


Thomas Says:

Thats some nice music jamie!. Hopefully, your predictions are as good as that music :P


Giles Says:

jamie. Blah blah blah blah!!


Sienna Says:

the decline of Rafa hasbeen talked about on this site by those who see clearly what is happening. That he would fall so steep and sift is just mindblowing. I feel he will have a resurrection still left in himelf. He can take another slam but I do not think it is this one. How on earth is he gona cover all the ground required to win him the next slam? If and only if he has the mindset to give it his all an d truly believe he is a tennis all time great then he could win his next slam.

Of course that next slam is vital for his claim to all time stature.

SLams after the resigne from the game for the top 4 are as follows:
Federer 20 (he said he would so why wouldnt he. Te man is an enigma0
Nadal 12 (one more push could bring him his last hurray)
Djokovic 9 (His slams earnings will drop considerable with all the dope allegations going on)
Murray 3 (maybe 4 but he is just losing to may finals aainst these guys.)

There you have it , those are the numbers they are stuck with at the end of their careers.

Have a good one and keep it real.


mat4 Says:

“Djokovic 9 (His slams earnings will drop considerable with all the dope allegations going on)”

Djokovic doesn’t dope. At least, he is not he only one suspect. Let’s review the usual signs.

1. He suddenly gained weight and muscles.

No, he didn’t. He even lost some weight, and looks like a middleweight among heavyweights. Possible suspects among the top ten: Nadal, Murray, Berdych, even Tsonga; there were noticable changes in the cases of Isner, DelPo, Roddick, and in the frame of Ferrer, Tipsarevic, just to mention a few of them.

2. He suddenly gained supernormal stamina.

No, he didn’t. He played a lot of 5 setters before 2011, and played them well. In fact, although modern players have to be more explosive than the previous generations, they don’t play doubles, they play less matches in the best of five format, overall, they play less. Their racquets are light and require less strength. They have excellent physios, they are careful about their food and drink.

He has an obvious advantage when he faces Nadal and Murray: his lighter frame. Djokovic and Federer are built like 400m runners, when Rafa and Andy are built like 100m runners. Both Rafa and Andy are faster, but they have to wear 10 to 15 pounds (at least) of their weight all the time.

He still plays 10/20% worse in the heat.

Other suspects among the top ten: Federer (who played 90+ matches a year with excellent results for years), Ferrer.

Finally, the reactions of the top four made me think the following two things:

1. they don’t know enough about doping,
2. they have shown good will to clear themselves and the sport they play.

If they were really doping, they wouldn’t complain about the schedule, they wouldn’t reveal the use of the “egg” or hypo/hyperbarric tents etc., they wouldn’t divulge when they were controlled (or not). They would try not to be suspect from the beginning.


Sienna Says:

2. He suddenly gained supernormal stamina.

No, he didn’t. He played a lot of 5 setters before 2011, and played them well. In fact, although modern players have to be more explosive than the previous generations, they don’t play doubles, they play less matches in the best of five format, overall, they play less. Their racquets are light and require less strength. They have excellent physios, they are careful about their food and drink.

WOW you are completely in denial!

Of course his fysiek and stamina upped big time in 2011/ Remember how he was fysically strugling ? He used to retire in those matches because he just could not cope the pain.

And all of a sudden out of the blue he starts to outgun Nadal in the fysical part of the gme. Clear sign for dope that is.


mat4 Says:

This is Peter Bodo’s answer from here:

http://www.tennis.com/pro-game/2013/02/tennis-talk-peter-bodo-feb-8-1-pm-est/46340/

“Comment From ciaran

the talk of the sporting world is currently doping(armstrong,aussie sport,etc,etc).but how come nobody is raising any questions about djokovic,i just dont buy that gluten free and no carbs diet that he said “transformed” him.this was a guy who would pull out of matches due to any reason known to man,a perennial semi-finalist.now he is a demi-god.there has to be something as with armstrong he never failed a test and he was the most tested athlete in history.
2:19

PB:

Okay, so what about Rafa, the once weedy kid who had to miss the French Open early on because of elbow problems, and also suffered other injuries that mysteriously vanished? See, two can play that game. No offense, you’re a loyal contributor and reader _but this line of reasoning, applied to someone who just happens to be a rival of your favorite (whether Fed or Nadal) is just despicable_. You are better than this.”

No need to comment.


mat4 Says:

I am not in denial. It is a prejudice.

Djokovic never retired in the fifth set. Here is the list:

Juniors:

6-2, 1-2 ret. Vs. Josh Goodall in a final in 2003

Pro:

7-6, 5-7, 0-2 ret. Mohammad Mamoun R32 In a Serbia F6 2003

6-4, 2-6, 2-3 ret. Vs. Guillermo Coria R64 at Roland Garros 2005

W/O to Galo Blanco at Stuttgart Qualies 2005

6-4, 4-6 ret. Vs. Yuriy Schukin in Metz Qualies 2005

4-6, 4-6, ret. Vs. Rafael Nadal Quarterfinals Roland Garros 2006

6-6 ret. Vs. Stan Wawrinka Finals of Umag 2006

6-3, 1-6, 1-4 ret. Vs. Rafael Nadal Semifinals of Wimbledon 2007

6-4, 6-3, 4-6, ret. Vs. Nikolay Davydenko Davis Cup 1st round 2008

3-6, 2-3 ret. Vs. Roger Federer Monte Carlo 2008 Semifinals

7-6, 4-6, 2-6, 1-2 ret. Vs. Andy Roddick Australian Open 2009 Quarterfinals

4-6 ret. Vs. Filip Krajinovic in Belgrade 2010 Quarterfinals

4-6, 0-3 ret. Vs. Murray in Cincy 2011 Finals

6-7, 0-3 ret. Vs, Juan Martin Del Potro in Davis Cup Semis 2011

W/O to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in Paris 2011

As you can see, he never retired after the third set. I don’t know for the first few matches, but I watched all the matches from 2007, and it was never a problem with stamina, not even at the AO in 2009, where the problem was extreme heat – 40 oC and the surface was at about 65 oC.


mat4 Says:

About retirements + withdrawals:

I found this list from 2011, but it is perhaps a bit old:

Michael Llodra — 27
Nicolas Kiefer — 28
Filippo Volandri — 26
Nikolay Davydenko — 25
Jan Hajek — 26
Janko Tipsarevic — 21
Juan Martin Del Potro — 15
Mischa Zverev — 22

Then:

“Marcos Daniel (23 defaults), Xavier Malisse (19, including one for a tantrum), Paul-Henri Mathieu (19), Victor Hanescu (18), Jose Acasuso (17) and a glut of players on 16, which includes Philipp Kohlschreiber, Richard Gasquet, Steve Darcis, Rob Kendrick and Rainer Schuettler.

There is also a group of players to keep an eye on that have between 12 and 15 defaults between them, which includes: Bogomolov, Istomin, Tursunov, Mayer, Stepanek, Roddick, Youzhny, Tsonga, Monfils, and Gonzalez.”


Giles Says:

So much for Fed’s tuffffff draw. Janowicz ousted already by Hanescu!


jamie Says:

@Sienna

LOL. Federer is not going to win 3 more slams. Just no. Wimbledon 2012 was his swan song after almost 30 months of not winning slam. He has won his last slam already. His last hurrah was aided by a lucky SF and Final under the roof agains a sick with the flu Nole and then scared non slam winner yet Murray. The miracle already happened and that was it. No more slams for him as well as no more slams for Finishedal.

Nole and Andy will rule the slams for the next years. Nole will win 8 more slams and And will win 7 more slams.

SLams after the resigne from the game for the top 4 are as follows:
Federer 20 (he said he would so why wouldnt he. Te man is an enigma0
Nadal 12 (one more push could bring him his last hurray)
Djokovic 9 (His slams earnings will drop considerable with all the dope allegations going on)
Murray 3 (maybe 4 but he is just losing to may finals aainst these guys.)

There you have it , those are the numbers they are stuck with at the end of their careers.

Have a good one and keep it real.


jamie Says:

SLams after the resigne from the game for the top 4 are as follows:
Federer 20 (he said he would so why wouldnt he. Te man is an enigma0
Nadal 12 (one more push could bring him his last hurray)
Djokovic 9 (His slams earnings will drop considerable with all the dope allegations going on)
Murray 3 (maybe 4 but he is just losing to may finals aainst these guys.)

There you have it , those are the numbers they are stuck with at the end of their careers.

Have a good one and keep it real.

____________

Hilarious.

Federer at 32 is going to win as many slams as Nole fron now on. Delusional. The one doping is the 32 year old that never gets tired.


jamie Says:

Keep it real

Federer is not going to win 3 more slams. Just no. Wimbledon 2012 was his swan song after almost 30 months of not winning slam. He has won his last slam already. His last hurrah was aided by a lucky SF and Final under the roof agains a sick with the flu Nole and then scared non slam winner yet Murray. The miracle already happened and that was it. No more slams for him as well as no more slams for Finishedal.

Nole and Andy will rule the slams for the next years. Nole will win 8 more slams and And will win 7 more slams.


alison Says:

Sienna and Jamie LMAO at your posts,as you both say keep it real.


nadalista Says:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/tennis/9863367/Roger-Federer-calls-on-blood-testing-to-keep-tennis-clean.html

Choice quote:

“I feel tennis is very clean, there’s maybe one case a year and they are not all done on purpose.

“Some are just mistakes, but stupidity can get you into trouble also.”

Watch it Fed, you’ll get into trouble with @subo saying reckless things like that……..


Wog boy Says:

mat4,

When somebody posts something about player out of pure hate towards that player (and his background) than it is waste of your precious time to respond, just ignore shim:)


mat4 Says:

@WB:

Hi, WB. Just started to wonder where you are. Felt a bit alone among all those Rafans.

I didn’t answer to THAT poster. I did for the sake of others. The stories about Novak’s lack of stamina, his transformation etc. are so often repeated that most of the tennis fans started to think it was the truth.

I wanted it to be known that Novak didn’t improve his stamina in 2011 — he improved his health and his breathing. I wanted to make clear that, although he is well prepared, and his discipline and commitment are exceptional, it is not something we haven’t seen from other players, it is not supernatural, and players did it 20 years ago.

He didn’t retire whenever the going got tough, in fact he retired two or three times when he was losing, without a clear explation (once against Rafa, once against Roger, and I think it was psychological).

And I am really sick about those doping fables. If the top four do take PEDs, then they are exceptionally stupid — and I don’t buy that. Djokovic, Nadal, Murray, Federer (who missed at least one testing) have done or said everything they could to be suspect, and now ask for more testing, biological passports… It is certainly not the way they would have acted if, indeed, they were using drugs. It is rather a way to act for persons that didn’t know anything about PEDs, and suddenly started to realise that they could be seen as taking PEDs and want their names cleared.


Wog boy Says:

Hi mat4,

I have been around, haven’t seen Rafa matches so couldn’t talk about his game. Still to early to judge Rafa, we will have better picture after IW or Miami, I am still pretty sure he will not play both.
As for Novak, he is also playing tactically better now then before (I compared his last year AO SF and this year F on the other thread) he is matered as a player and as a person and his improved serve helps him preserve energy etc … but you said it better ayway.


Wog boy Says:

“matured”


mat4 Says:

@WB:

Which thread? I can’t find it.


mat4 Says:

I think I found it. It was the comment about the St Bartholomew.

I don’t know really if he played better tactically. But it should be expected, since they have played 6 matches in the meantime.

I thought he had problems, last year, to regain his form. I write from memory, so I am not sure, but it seemed to me that Andy was hurting him very much with his IO flat FH.

Some other things I noticed, without special order: Murray plays lower balls on Novak’s BH whenever he can; Novak tried to attack Andy’s defensive BH slice on the net; Novak manages to redirect his FH more easily; both played very well after the serve, often finishing points immediately; both served more then usual to the FH; for two sets Andy tried to deny angles to Novak, playing through the middle, then he tried to play more risky from the third set; since the swingweight is different, Novak has to hit the ball faster, otherwise it will go out; his FH looked quite different…

But the way they both managed to hold serve for more than two sets is still a mystery to me.


Wog boy Says:

You are far more studious than me I cannot follow you, too technical for me. I am just a fan with LTD knowledge.
You are right, they know each other too well, they both play tactically strong games against each other. At USO Nole lost the match in the first set TB, and looked like that is going same case at AO but it wasn’t. When I was talking about last year SF it was another interesting thing, if you watch last few games of the match you could see Lendl pretty engaged in match, he wasn’t his usual self.


Skorocel Says:

“Amazing recovery for Stephens, who days earlier couldn’t play Fed Cup for the U.S. due to an ab injury…”

Gotta love these jabs here at Tennis-x.com ;-)

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