Novak Djokovic: Roger Played The Perfect Match
by Tom Gainey | October 11th, 2014, 10:43 am
  • 23 Comments

Following a 64, 64 loss to rival Roger Federer in the Shanghai semifinals, 2-time champion Novak Djokovic praised the Swiss legend.

“I think I did not play too bad,” said Djokovic who falls to 17-19 against Federer, 2-3 this year. “It’s just that he played everything he wanted to play. He played the perfect match. I think he’s going to tell you how he felt, but that’s how I felt he played. He played an amazing match.”

Djokovic had won 28 straight matches in China since losing to Federer in the 2010 Shanghai semifinals.

Djokovic, who is now in a serious fight for the No. 1 ranking, will rejoin Federer in Basel a week from Monday Paris at the end of the month. He and his wife are expecting the birth of their first child sometime late this month/early November.


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23 Comments for Novak Djokovic: Roger Played The Perfect Match

Sirius Says:

Djokovic to play basel??


Brando GOAT poster Says:

Novak in Basel? When did that get announced? Good move if true but he’s better of going to Valencia: 500 points all the same and a easier time getting it since Basel can have a packed field and Fed infront of home support is not a easy out at all.


jane Says:

you win some; you lose some. nole won’t have a shot at a third shanghai masters in a row. drag. congrats to fed and fans.


Michael Says:

Novak is quite candid, honest and has made the right assessment. Roger was at its rampaging best and he could do nothing to stop his onslaught. But Novak wasn’t playing badly at all and it was just not his day. He couldn’t find solutions to Roger’s chip and charge tactics which worked today to perfection. All in all, a lacklustre year for Novak relatively although he is still the No.1. Particularly worrying for Novak is his performance in hard courts where he is not able to dominate as he used to in the past.


Tennis Fan Says:

Who said the “old man is done” … this gives me hope at my own game :)


Brando GOAT Poster Says:

@Michael:

Great, great post and I agree fully with all you have to say.

Fact is Novak’s results on Outdoor HC- the surface of his choice- in Grand Slams and MS this year reads:

SF (USO) QF (AO)

W W SF QF R16.

To me for a stellar player as Novak is on Hard Courts I am not too sure whether that performance is up to the mark. When you consider also that post his Indian Wells win he was saying he needs to improve his Tennis- for him- as its not upto his desired level then I have to say:

It maybe fair to say that he has under performed this year on Outdoor Hard Court. For him not to play a single Hard Court Grand Slam final may just be the most bizarre stat of this season.

I am not too sure now whether he’ll seal the no.1 for Year End since work still has to be done and he has some issues:

1. Fact of form: post Wimbledon Nole’s record reads: W (at China Open though) SF SF QF R16. All on Outdoor Hard courts. To me that does not indicate Novak is at his best form. 1/5 finals on Outdoor HC is not Novak Djokovic at his best.

2. The birth of his child: This can scupper his chances depending on when it occurs. He could possibly be in a position where he withdraws from Paris Masters. Rightfully so, but in terms of the Year End race it would be very unhelpful.

So right now I think he really needs to step up a level if he wants to seal that Year End no.1 since truthfully speaking:

As soon as Nadal withdrew from USO Series Novak should have sealed the deal in America like many though he would since it was handed on a plate to him once Rafa forfeited 4,000 ranking points. But because he’s been under performing he still has not sealed the deal and we are in October.

He’s got the game and the ability to do so, but he needs to step up to the task and deal with it since it looks like Federer fancies his chances and definitely is hungry for that top spot.

An intriguing finish is in the making for sure.


django Says:

Novak beat Fed at WIM, Fed’s best tourney and Fed takes out Novak at his fave tourney.
Congrats to Federites


Dc Says:

Fed played some amazing offense. The final match point was a pleasure to watch – . He chipped and charged with extreme comfort and won the point with two shots at the net.
Feds kept the points short and did not let Nole get comfortable, which I believe was a key factor in assisting fed dominate the match.
All credit to fed for showing that even when he is olderer he can be razor sharperer


Hippy Chick Says:

Novak maybe physically and emotionally tired at the moment,i know hes done it before,but winning tournies back to back was always going to be a tough ask,what surprised me was not the loss so much,as Fed matches up well with Novak,but Novak didnt even get a set,Novak and Federer matches are usually much closer,maybe Roger was just fresher,anyway congrats and best of luck for the final,and sorry to the lovely Nole fans on the forum….


Okiegal Says:

@Tennis Fan 11:55

Who said the old man is done?? A bunch of his fickle fans said so. I can remember reading comments from some of his fans wanting him to hang it up because he was embarrasslng himself……mostly his fans couldn’t take the losses. I took a stand for him because he was being touted as being too old. Thank goodness for him he didn’t listen to his “so called” fans. He was being thrown under the bus quite often. Go to TX archives, if there is such, and check it out. BTW, 33 isn’t old, try 69!! I do admire him and his will to fight on.

He is just a little too arrogant for my taste, but he’s one heck of a tennis player. Still love to watch him and Rafa……some of the greatest and most exciting matches I have ever watched. Those two Wimbys I will remember 4ever! The best to Fed and his fans!!


Okiegal Says:

@Tennis Fan 11:55

Who said the old man is done?? A bunch of his fickle fans said so. I can remember reading comments from some of his fans wanting him to hang it up because he was embarrasslng himself……mostly his fans couldn’t take the losses. I took a stand for him because he was being touted as being too old. Thank goodness for him he didn’t listen to his “so called” fans. He was being thrown under the bus quite often. Go to TX archives, if there is such, and check it out. BTW, 33 isn’t old, try 69!! I do admire him and his will to fight on.

He is just a little too arrogant for my taste, but he’s one heck of a tennis player. Still love to watch him and Rafa……some of the greatest and most exciting matches I have ever watched. Those two Wimbys I will remember 4ever! The best to Fed and his fans!!


Steve 27 Says:

The Djokovics forehand, Oh my god!


django Says:

okie does TX have an archive?


Okiegal Says:

@django……I really don’t know how far back they keep their threads. I have been reading TX for a couple of years…..it took me a full year to not have to be under moderation. But I have read comments from Fed fans saying they thought it was time to retire……and now look at him……could possibly be #1 again. I called them out about it coz I thought it was tacky……me being an older person I resent statements about age! In the first place, 33 is not old!!


django Says:

Steve, Novak looked at bit flat but Fed did bring his A+ game.


Michael Says:

Brando @ 12.22 PM,

Thanks !!

But I had anticipated earlier that familial issues might affect Novak’s performance and I am being proven right. It is not so easy to strike the right balance between the Sport you adopted as your passion and livelihood & the pressures of being a family man. Though it might appear to be easy superficially, it is not. I think Novak made a tactical blunder in hurrying his marriage as well achieving father time. Although it is his individual interest and business which onlookers having no right to interfere, yet I could not escape the feeling that it has hurt his game. Tennis is a very competitive and brutal sport and everybody cannot become Roger who miraculously found the right balance. I do not think Novak’s game can be measured up against his performance against Roger yesterday. He indeed played very well but was just subsumed by the brilliance and tactically outplayed by Roger. Shanghai too was a fast court which made Roger’s chip and charge work to perfection. I doubt if he would be able to replicate this model say in Miami or even Australian Open ? Novak is not just losing to Roger. He is losing to everybody including Robredo and that is a real problem. Even against Kushkushin, he had to wage a gallant fight to the end to clinch that match. That is really worrying for me. Now, Novak has a heady business from now on as to how stream line his life and not allowed himself to be fallen between two stools. I hope he turns a new leaf and rediscover his groove which can once again peddle him to the height of glory. The task is really difficult and it remains to be seen as to how Novak copes up with the pressures of family and sport.


Michael Says:

What is so perplexing and mysterious about Tennis which also raises curiosity and interest is the way Roger struggled against a journeyman like Leonardo Mayer who was just outplaying Roger from the back of the court and also easily reading his serve making Roger agitated and frustrated on court. Infact Roger was extremely lucky to survive in the end, but today he has chances to even win the tournament. But strangely, Novak, one of the best returners the game has known just struggles to read Roger’s serve and combat his chip and charge tactics. That is how delicate and complex Tennis is which you are not able to understand just like the meaning of our life. Every match is different and even set and games.


Margot Says:

@Michael
But time and again we see players really lift their game when they face a really dangerous opponent. Fed was never going to underestimate Nole, but may well have approached Mayer with less caution.
Your comments about Nole are interesting too. He’s a very emotional kind of guy and I feel fatherhood will effect him.
Of course it might spur him onto amazing tennis heights. We’ll just have to wait and see.


sienna Says:

There we go again with Fed being arrogant.

why because he is winning again? last year he wasnt because he got beaten so often.
But still he knew what to do. when others were embracing life he took on board aan new coach en made sure hè got fit again.

no arrogance just self belief and setting goals.
the hunger will not yet be fullfilled. SLAMS NEED TO BE WON


sienna Says:

Just when someone says that him playing bad or have aan offday is not gonna happen doesnot mean he is arrogant. it means he is confident.
MC was different earlier in the year and playing his friend.
Simon is no friend.

unless Simon plays like Cilic Federer Will win.
Cilic at US OPEN played best tennis of the year. Propably the highest leven since 2011. If Cilic somehow finds the mental strenght to bring that game on regular basis he will dominate the game.


Michael Says:

Margot,

True. Every match is different and even sets in matches and that is what I was trying to point out. I think Novak in a way was not prepared for the chip and charge tactics deployed by Roger on a continuous basis which just rattled him and he was at his wit’s end unable to find a answer to the barrage of volleys which seem to intersect many of his passing shots. Ofcourse Nole and Mayer are two different sets of propositions altogether who can never be consciously compared in terms of play or achievements. As you rightly said, Roger didn’t expect anything great from Mayer but was queerly surprised with the quality of his opponents play on that day.

Regarding Novak’s family life, well I am sure it has affected his game in a large measure and that is revealed even by the results which might be mere coincidence or signify a larger malady to be viewed seriously. But I was just surprised by Novak hurrying through to extinguish his celibacy and reaching father hood. He was in the prime of his career and a delay of two or more years would have made a huge difference to his career is what I believe in. I strongly feel marital issues deflect you away from sport and make you dispassionate on what you base your career. You need tremendous mental agility and strength to maintain the right balance which only a very few can afford.


madmax Says:

Oki,

I think it was only gannu who said that, but they are an emotional poster (aren’t we all at times?)and she would be first to admit that.

All other Fed fans, of course, get disgruntled with match play. Can’t believe for a moment Fed will ever stop playing tennis. He is just an awesome watch.

I’ve said it before and I will say it again, without confidence (in shed loads), how can professional athletes have belief in their game? Arrogance is balanced with confidence and humility. The most arrogant athletes are out there, say it how it is and believe in themselves and fed has this, but also he has confidence and humility.

I don’t buy into rafa’s so called humility. It sounds staged a lot of the time, by his Uncle. I don’t think Rafa would have been as successful it if hadn’t coupled his arrogance with confidence, self-belief and humility.

Jane,

This was a great match by both players. I thought Nole played some great shots. Roger though, really was on fire.

Yahooooosaaaaaa!


Okiegal Says:

@Madmax…….Congrats on Roger’ s win……He is on fire. There was more than one fan who gave up on Fed…..Van Orten was another one. I remember this because I was so shocked that he was being thrown under the bus by his faithful fans. Whatever, I do remember, I’m not that old!! Lol

I still think Rafa is a humble guy…..I don’t see him as arrogant either. You can think whatever you want to about him. Roger just rubs me the wrong way with all his bragging, just not my cup of tea……but as I have said many times I do love to watch Fedal rivalry, Novak thrown in there too, great entertainment!! Again, kudos to Fed and his faithful fans!!

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