Andy Murray v Tomas Berdych In Thursday, Who’s The Pick? Wawrinka, Djokovic Advance
by Sean Randall | January 28th, 2015, 9:15 am
  • 206 Comments

The first men’s semifinal is on tap tonight at the Australian Open. So much for hoped-for Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal showdown, but both lost to guys they owned. Instead, it’s a rematch of the 2012 US Open semifinal between former finalist Andy Murray and Nadal-conqueror Tomas Berdych.

But first a word on Wednesday’s quarterfinals.

Defending champion Stan Wawrinka sure showed up Kei Nishikori bullying his way past the US Open finalist 6-3, 6-4, 7-6(6). But for a lapse at the end (Stan led 6-1 in the 3rd set breaker), he looked really good doing it.

“I think I’m playing better [than last year],” said Wawrinka. “But I think we all improve every year. I’m more aggressive. I’m more confident with my game when I come to the net.

“Today was a great level, it was a great match. Now I’m going to enjoy a little bit, watch who’s going to win tonight and get ready for the semifinal.”

Watching the match, Wawrinka simply appeared stronger and more in tune than the younger Kei. And he is. I just wasn’t sure Stan could hold it together, but he played some sizzling tennis to reach his second straight Australian Open semifinal.

“I know that now I have a Grand Slam at home,” said Wawrinka. “I have the Grand Slam trophy. I won the Davis Cup also. I have the confidence from that. I know I can make it. I trust my game. I trust myself on the court even when we start to play semifinal or final in Grand Slam. Apart that, it’s a new year. It’s going to be a new semifinal. We’ll see who I’m going to play.”

Up next for Stan is a rematch with Novak Djokovic. The Serb kept it rolling easing past Milos Raonic in the night match in three sets, completing a straight-set quarter! Milos said he’s a better, but clearly he still has a lot more work to do if he wants to beat the best. You can’t win if you can’t break serve in this business.

Novak remains the man in charge, but because Stan beat him a year ago I absolutely give him a chance to pull off the upset.

“Tonight there was not much I could complain about,” Djokovic said. “From the first game till the last I played the way I wanted. I created a lot of breakpoint opportunities. The key of tonight’s match, one of the keys, was to get as many balls back in play, returns back in play. I thought from the back of the court I had more chance than him to win the points. I executed very, very well. It’s easier said than done, but I feel very good about my game in this moment.”

Now to Thursday’s semifinal match…

Andy Murray v Tomas Berdych
They have played 10 times before with Berdych leading 6-4. But Murray beat him in their most recent Grand Slam meeting at the 2012 US Open semifinals. So it’s pretty even, as it should be.

Murray plays more defensive so if Berdych is on, he can break through the Scot. Big offense will eventually wear down good defense.

“He’s a big guy,” Murray said. “He strikes the ball very well. Yeah, he serves well. Yeah, he’s fairly calm on the court. I think he manages emotions fairly well. And, yeah, he’s obviously played extremely well this tournament so far. Just by looking at the results, he’s had some good wins and played well in Doha. He’ll be coming into the match with confidence.”

And Murray is right. Berdych hasn’t lost a set and he just rolled Rafael Nadal like few ever has. But I still like Murray’s variety and guile. And unlike Berdych, Murray’s proven he’s the better big match player through the years. This week Murray has played as well as Berdych, beating Grigor Dimitrov and the other night Nick Kyrgios.

That said, Berdych recently hired Murray’s old assistant coach, Dani Valverdu, so maybe that complicates matter? Or maybe it doesn’t. I think it doesn’t.

The key will be Murray’s strategy. If he tries to play defensive – like Nadal did – he will have to hope Berdych gets tight or is off his game. But if Murray comes out aggressive, on the attack, he can dictate and stay on top of Berdych. And that’s what I think is going to happen.
The pick: Murray in four

ESPN2 has the late night coverage starting at 3:30am.


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206 Comments for Andy Murray v Tomas Berdych In Thursday, Who’s The Pick? Wawrinka, Djokovic Advance

Emily Says:

Already wrote my pro-Stan post on the other forum, but at least Sean is giving him a chance (or is that bad luck)? The match w/ Kei was like night and day compared to the US Open QF and Stan was holding back when he said he didn’t learn anything from their previous match. That destined semi w/ Nole should have the sparks and intensity since they both really want that spot in the final, but I am curious about Murray/Berdych.

Murray was clinical in his QF match against Krygios, but then again, so was Berdych. I saw their 2012 US Open match and if it hadn’t been for the crazy wind that day, it could have gone either way. Maybe Berdych sees his chance to finally win a slam, but he has losing records against both Stan and Nole (but then again, that was true with Nadal).

Andy needs to be aggressive and learn from Nadal’s mistakes, and I don’t buy into the theory that Dani Valverdu knows all of Murray’s secrets and has passed them on to Tomas. This one should be good, but personally, the main event for me is tomorrow’s match. Fingers crossed for a Stan repeat.


jane Says:

berdych played great but rafa was off in some way which made him look even better. andy will chase down a lot of the balls rafa normally would have, and he will do better on the second serve. it seems strange writing that because usually it’s andy who’s had second serve issues. however, he has protected it exceptionally well at this event and rafa’s was poor in the berd match; i think he won less than 30% on his seconds.

“it’s a rematch of the 2012 US Open semifinal between former finalist Andy Murray and Nadal-conqueror Tomas Berdych.”

that time berdych conquered fed. i kind of doubt he can conquer two of the “big 4″ in a row, although he has done it once, at wimbledon 2010 when he beat fed and nole. to me murray has looked stronger at this event though. also about danny helping tomas, he could offer some tips, but as murray said “it works both ways” as murray and danny have talked about tomas’ game in the past too. it could be close but for me, edge to andy.

as for the other side, stan looked crazy good to me. didn’t see raonic/nole’s match, but i think this semi may be slightly in favour of nole, but again, close. both are AO champs and obviously like this court; however, it’s been playing faster the past 2 years which seems to suit stan’s game. i think maybe kei was hitting to stan’s wheelhouse as some have said. but also stan’s plan was to hit all his serves to kei’s forehand, exposing a weakness there, and it worked well.

looking forward to these matches!


Okiegal Says:

Andy/Novak final…..me thinks….


Emily Says:

Totally agree with Rafa’s below standard play. It was almost a little weird and Andy, meanwhile, has looked strong so far. I saw Andy’s quote about Danny discussing Tomas with him so he doesn’t seem worried about any secrets that could get passed on.

Don’t know how I’ll get through the week if I stay up for both semis, but hopefully it will be worth it.


Ben Pronin Says:

Everyone loves to talk about how Berdych is a choker and mentally weak and blah blah blah. Why do people love to focus more on unquantifiable intangibles than the actual game?

The reason Berdych struggles against the Big 3-4 is simply because he does not move that well, especially compared to the Big 3-4. He can hit as hard as anyone. In fact, he probably hits the hardest natural ball in the history of the game. But that’s only when he has time. He has an ok slice, and once in a while he can hit a great running forehand. But even against Nadal the other night, when Nadal was actually trying to dictate points, Berdych would struggle. Back in 06 when Berdych still had a winning record against Rafa it was because, at the time, he had the easier match up when Nadal didn’t hit deep heavy forehands and back hands down the line. Once Nadal developed those shots, the tide flipped on a technical level, not because of anything going on between Berdych’s ears.

Same thing against Murray and Djokovic. They move so much better than he does and when they get him on a string, it’s game over. The reason Berdych has done better against Murray than Djokovic is because Murray is more inclined to be passive which benefits Berdych.

And against Federer, most of Berdych’s success has come in the last few years. When Federer isn’t moving well, he ends up playing passive and allows Berdych to dictate. When Federer is moving well and playing well, he is able to get Berdych on that string and wins rather routinely.

So my pick is Murray in 4, maybe even 3. Murray has been playing extremely well and with controlled aggression. And it’s unfortunate for Berdych that everyone’s going to get on his case for laying a dud after a big win. But that’s not what’s going to happen. He’s not going to lay a dud because of anything going on in his head. It’s all because of his legs.


RZ Says:

I agree with Ben that Berdych doesn’t move that well. Also, he doesn’t have as much stamina as the top guys to last through several long matches in a week, though that may not be a factor this year since he’s had fairly fast matches.


RZ Says:

Fingers crossed for Andy… I would love to see Murresmo get the victory here.


KatH Says:

Re. Ben Pronin – Excellent dissertation.

Only one little quibble i.e. doubt Berdych will “lay a dud” – he’ll be focused. He wants to win this match for a myriad of reasons (is on a high re. his engagement; believes he’s got slight advantage because of Dani’s knowledge of Murray; believes his win over Nadal was due entirely to his successful match plan and excellent play.

Having said all that, I hope I’m wrong because I much prefer your reasons than my own. I want Andy to WIN – and if possible, win easily otherwise my nerves might not take it.
Cheers


skeezer Says:

Sean,

Errrr what is the Novak/Stan pick??


skeezer Says:

Andy is moving way better than Rafa right now.
I suspect Bird will come out guns blaring and focused, but when the match settles in Murray will wear Bird down with his defense and variety.


funches Says:

I was amused how almost every analyst and commentator picked Nishikori over Wawrinka. I’ve always believed people refuse to discard their preconceived notions when they watch matches because in my opinion Wawrinka played better against Garcia-Lopez than Nishikori did against Ferrer.

But how is that possible, considering the scorelines? Because G-L played out of his mind after falling down 4-2 in the third set and was painting the lines with blistering shot after blistering shot. He’s an average player most of the time, but for about an hour there he was unbelievably good. Meanwhile, Ferrer clearly was compromised in his movement by blisters. He lost to Nishikori all four times they played last year when he was a full strength, so he had no shot to hang with him when he was less than 100 percent.

Yet, everyone said Nishikori, who was in deep trouble against Dodig and lost a set to Steve Johnson, was playing better than Wawrinka entering their match. No, no he wasn’t.

I picked Wawrinka to defend his title before the tournament started in the Tennis Channel Racquet Bracket contest. I’m certainly not sure he will beat Djokovic, but if serves and hits his backhand the same way he did yesterday, he has a pretty good chance.


Emily Says:

@Ben, you think Berdych hits the ball harder than Delpo circa 2009?


funches Says:

I agree with everything Ben wrote 100 percent except for his conclusion about the Berdych-Murray matchup. The lack of speed is exactly the reason Berdych is not as good as those guys, but he matches up better with Murray than the other three, as the head-to-head record attests.

If Murray plays aggressively and is not error prone, he will win for sure. But if he plays passively, as he sometimes does in big matches, or is off his game when he hits out, Berdych can win.

But that’s a quibble. Ben’s analysis of Berdych’s game is spot on.


Margot Says:

OMG I hope Sean is right this time!
@ Ben
Liked your take Ben. I agree about Berd’s movement but he hits the ball so cleanly and so hard, it kind of nullifies this lack.
Dunno why so here many are predicting Andy so easily, Berd is so strong and has a winning H2H.
I am hyper nervous already! EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEKKKKKKKKKK.


Ben Pronin Says:

The eye test tells me Del Potro consciously goes for extra when he hits that hard. I have never looked up the numebrs so I can’t say for sure but I think Berdych’s shots have more natural power. I don’t think Berdych has ever had wrist problems the way Del Potro does so that tells me he’s pushing his body a little too hard whereas Berdych isn’t doing anythuing he can’t already handle.

Funches, I agree about Murray. If he’s passive, Berdych will probably win. But Murray hasn’t been passive from what I’ve seen, so I think he wins tonight. But I’m sure we’ll see a lot of people say “oh Berdych couldn’t handle the pressure after the big win against Nadal”. I just don’t think that’s fair. It’s not fair to Berdych or Murray. If Murray wins tonight I don’t think it will have anything to do with Berdych’s win over Nadal. New match, new day, new opponent.


sienna Says:

exit Murray. he faces first real in form top player. Berdych gonna take this slam.


sienna Says:

big hitters are cleaning out the slams.


brando Says:

I think Berdych is the pick here. We know he matches up well withAndy. We know Andy can struggle against genuinely powerful players. And we know Tomas will be the one forcing the issue, looking to dictate and take the initiative. Glad others said Rafael was not upto his usual level the other day, but in defense of Tomas: what impressed me most was how ice cool he was in the majority of that match. Mentally he impressed me a lot in that match. And let’s not forget: this is the first big name player Andy is facing all event…….. Other than Grigor, a player who was actually dominating Andy and should have won 2 of the 4 sets played. Tomas though is played 15 sets and won all 15. I genuinely think he likes his game against Andy, believes he should win and probably will walk on feeling the match is on his racquet. Right now: I would say he’s the more inform, confident player and I think is the pick. The first set will be all crucial: Andy has to win it or else he could be pummeled by Tomas I think. Folks are expecting Berdych to collapse but are not taking note that he’s actually playing excellent tennis and has shown real improvements already. He hired Dani and showed he wants to do more, is willing to work for it and certainly aspires for it. RU at Doha, straight sets to SF including thrashing Nadal shows he ain’t kidding around either. Verdict: I will root passionately for Andy but I think Berdych-IF he shows the same composure he showed v Nadal- will have too much heat for him.


KatH Says:

Agree Margot – I won’t sleep tonight – its on the BBC at 8.15am Friday morning. I’ll have to get my crystals out.


Hippy Chick Says:

KatH i will be doing the same regarding the crystals lol….


Emily Says:

@funches, I wrote a very similar post on a different thread and I agree with you. Darren Cahill was the only commentator to pick Stan while Brad Gilbert predicted Kei in straight sets. I didn’t watch many of Kei’s matches, but I don’t think he had the hunger and confidence that Stan showed yesterday. Maybe he felt the pressure of expectation more since so many were declaring him the favorite and Stan’s been flying under the radar.

The commentators were even suggesting that Stan had been playing possum by initially slowing his serve down and saving his best game for the 2nd week, dubbing him “Sneaky Stan.” If there is an issue with his elbow (though he says there isn’t), he seems to have been saving his arm for the top guys, b/c his serving was on point against Kei. He had such a clear strategy by breaking down Kei’s forehand and it’s one of the most tactical matches I’ve seen him play.

He also mentally kept it together during this tiebreak and the tiebreak against GGL, even though the scores were flipped. He used the wind to his advantage and controlled the baseline, lessons he no doubt learned after their QF at the US Open. He has to use a similar strategy against Nole and limit the UE. I knew he would make the semis, but after yesterday’s performance, I think he can go all the way.

@funches, nice to know there’s another Stan fan as he can get lost in the shuffle during the big 3/4 debates.


RZ Says:

KatH and Margot – enjoy the match! I will keep to my habit of sleeping while Andy plays in hopes that it helps our guy.


Margot Says:

KatH: It’s really gr8 to have another Andy fan on here and there’s plenty of room behind my sofa, should you need it!
And for you too Hippy!
RZ: It’s in the bag then, must be…;)


Okiegal Says:

I’m so in hopes that Andy wins the whole enchilada. He’s playing marvelously, I must say…..c’mon
Andy, git r done!!


jane Says:

emily re: “dubbing him “Sneaky Stan.” yeah; i heard that. they were saying stan “sandbagged” his opponent or some such. however, could it be that stan was just playing as well as he needed to in order to get through the previous rounds and that he raised his game later? lots of great players do that and there’s nothing “sneaky” about it. it’s smart, rather, isn’t it? i thought that was weird. it’s almost like the commentators felt embarrassed and couldn’t believe their favourite/pick, in this case, kei, was not winning or keeping it closer. i didn’t see stan vs g-lo, but i have seen g-lo when he’s on fire before, and he can play very well. it is strange that no one seemed to think stan could repeat. he clearly likes this court. he nearly took out nole in 2013, and he took out nole/rafa back to back in 2014. why he was totally underestimated, i don’t know. perhaps it’s because his results were a bit inconsistent last year, though many of his losses were “good” losses, i.e., to fed at wimbledon or kei at the us open.


TennisVagabond.com Says:

No one’s talking about Milos, so I’ll start it: he stunk last night. That was a pathetic performance from a guy who is a regular Slam quarterfinalist now. The scoreline doesn’t do it justice. He had NO shot at that match.
When Novak was serving, Milos might as well have been in the stands. Crazy how pathetic his return of serve was.
Fed really exposed his movement at Wimbledon. Novak really exposed his ROS.
Novak walked through that match. He looked good, he looked perfect actually, but Milos gave him no challenge.
Man up Milos. Work on that return, exclude all else!


SG1 Says:

Ben Pronin Says:
Everyone loves to talk about how Berdych is a choker and mentally weak and blah blah blah. Why do people love to focus more on unquantifiable intangibles than the actual game?

———————–

Ben…I think your bang on. And I’ve been one of the people critical of Berdych mentally. Berdych plays well against a certain subset of opponents. Conversely, there is another subset that he struggles with. It doesn’t matter how good a ball striker you are if you can’t get in position to get a good lick. This does seem to be an issue for Berdy when he plays the Novaks, Nadals and such.

Your post resonated with me because of the Milos match with Novak. You can’t blame Milos for losing the battle when for all intensive purposes, he lost to a player who is much better than he is.

Tagging someone as being mentally weak is more appropriate when a player consistently loses to players they should beat.


SG1 Says:

Wawa and Novak…to steal a line from Brad Gilbert (hope no one gets made at me for quoting him), this is a popcorn match! Murray and Berdy isn’t bad at all but this match could be the best one of the tournament.


RZ Says:

@SG1 – I just hope both guys come out firing. If one of them is flat, it could be a snoozer instead.


Emily Says:

@jane, I think you’re right about the commentators trying to find excuses for why they picked Kei to win. They kept going on about how Stan’s average serve speed was lower this year and then when he flipped the script on them, they had to figure out something to say. It’s not unusual to just play as good as you need to during the 1st week of a slam, but they wanted to explain why they were justified in picking Kei. My favorite quote was after a Stan backhand crosscourt winner, Cahill exclaimed “This is just silly.”

I think the g-lo match was a bit nerve-wracking for him b/c he lost to him 1st round at the French. Stan was in control and just went on walk about during the 3rd set and g-lo took his chances. I’ve seen seeded players do that before in the earlier rounds b/c they know they’ll win, whether it’s in 3 or 4 sets. However, Stan stepped up in the 4th set tiebreak b/c he did not want a 5th set.

@SG1, I wouldn’t be ashamed about quoting Brad Gilbert; that guy can be ridiculous, but he comes up with some catchy phrases. Let’s hope he’s right about this “popcorn match”. I can’t decide who comes up with the best quotes, Gilbert or Robbie Koenig.


Okiegal Says:

Numbers 1, 4, 6 & 7…..not one young gun amongst the four…..but will say they got farther than 2 or 3…..definitely on the rise. Which one will win their first slam? Will it be after the veterans retire?? No changing of the guard just yet…..we will see….


TennisVagabond.com Says:

ben, there’s nothing inconsistent with saying Berdych has a choke history AND struggles particularly against Rafa and Novak for game issues.


Ben Pronin Says:

I think Berdych’s choke history is very exaggerated. He choked against Federer when he lead 2 sets to love back in 09. Other than that I can’t think of many times Berdych has actually choked. Come out flat? Not played with the right intensity? Sure. But he hasn’t choked all that often.


funches Says:

Berdych choked a volley that would have given him a two-set lead against Nadal in the Aussie Open a few years ago.

In a minor tournament before the U.S. Open he did the exact same thing on match point against Isner in the final two years ago.

His record in finals is poor, and the latest example is his loss to Ferrer a few weeks ago.

The reason he has not won a slam is his lack of speed. But he definitely could have achieved more in his career if he demonstrated the calmness he had against Rafa in the third-set tiebreak.


Michael Says:

Andy is a bold pick by Sean. So we have to wait and see if it turns right ? But Berdych is the hot player right now and he has advanced with an unprecedented result in his previous match which should favour him all the more. It is also the case that Berdych matches up well with Andy and so this battle is dead even. Andy too is having a very good Australian open so far, but the question is if he has been tested ? He did beat Dmitrov but the match was not without drama where the later was exploiting his weak second serve.

Ultimately it will boil down to the big points and so in my opinion it is a 52:48 match favouring Berdych but this match will go the distance.


Wog Boy Says:

How strange, when Federer defeated Raonic, 2:1 thanks to Rainic choking at the end , everybody was talking about how great Roger was playing (he became favourite ti win AO) and not about Raonic ROS. When Nole defeated Raonic in straight, 7:6 6:4 6:2 (important to point to show how Nole was getting into Raonic serve) by returning those bombs that were flaying 220-230km/h and not waiting for Raonic to choke and serving extremly well himself. Give the man credit, not to many players, if any, can defeat Raonic in the fashion Nole did last night. That was a match of absolut focus and determination by Nole from the first to the last moment. He even blastied Becker for leaving his chair to go to pee:)
If you ask me, Stan has the edge in the SF but that means nothing, every result is possible.
When it comes to Berdych then Andy be careful, forget Kyrgios, that was practice match, Berdych is playing great all tournament (check his match with Tomic) and has the man in his corner that knows everything about you. Hard to predict but I’ll go with Andy.


mat4 Says:

@Ben:

I remember well Berdych choking against the Djoker at the WTF in 2011, I guess, and it was a choke fest.

And about his speed — he’s not that slow, he’s faster than DelPo, at the level of Wawrinka. He’s problems were mainly technical: he tosses the ball too high when serving, and it is problematic in windy conditions; he doesn’t know how to use the slice to gain time in defence (his slice is not good anyway), and his game is a bit too predictive, too rhythmical.

But it is true that he hits very hard.


mat4 Says:

Raonic’s return is a liability, but everybody knew that already.


Wog Boy Says:

mat4, out of all big tall players Berdych game is the smoothest and he just glides when his game is on song, pleasure to watch. I enjoyed his match agsinst Tomic.


mat4 Says:

@WB: Agreed.


KatH Says:

So what happened – Federer was to give Murray his Waterloo.????????


calmdownplease Says:

`Other than Grigor, a player who was actually dominating Andy and should have won 2 of the 4 sets played`

Good grief what BS
Dimitrov shouldn’t have even won the 1 set, never mind 2 bar a inevitable Muzz 2 game walkabout he wouldn’t have.
He won on a tie break also.
19 Break Points to 8
42 winners to 46
Or if we are to give him the hypothetical 4th then we should take away the one he actually won.
Grigor came out all guns blazing and dominated for 3/4 games, not 2 sets.
Anyhoo that being said Andy, if he is to win `tonight`, has to be on his very best behaviour.
And that means as many others have said being proactive, which he has been in this tourney (the lessons of Lendl have not been forgotten)
And of course continue with his excellent serving and he should edge it in 4 or 5.


Wog Boy Says:

@jane@11:04am

Thanks jane, they did show it last night during the match when Jele tweeted, saying “ajde tatice, lets go daddy” …there is something else that strucks me in that photo and that is how modest is their apartment and siiting room in MC (I saw other photos too), like any ordinary apartment in Belgrade. Even I have better TV set then Nole:)


Wog Boy Says:

^^ “Jelena” not “Jele”


calmdownplease Says:

`Even I have better TV set then Nole..`

Bet your bank balance won’t be better however….
:-)


Wog Boy Says:

^^I wish you are wrong…but you are not:)


Yolita Says:

I think Berdych will beat Murray tonight and I hope that Novak will beat wawrinka.
I am a bit worried, though, that playing two big servers in a row will not be enough preparation for the challenge that Wawrinka will present.
It will be a great battle, though. That’s for sure. :)


mat4 Says:

@Yolita:

I think the same. Berdych will simply deconstruct Andy’s FH, and I am certain that that’s DV strategy against his old protégé. Berdych is also a very good returner, and he will put a lot of pressure on Andy’s second serve.

The key, for Andy, would be to use TB’s power, take the ball on the rise, play fast and change direction. The usual efficient tactics against BD are to move him around, use the pace and spin of his FH and then attack his BH. At least, that’s what Novak does. Unfortunately, Andy doesn’t take his FH on the rise often enough, although he is very capable of doing it.

So, we’ll see, but I give Berdych as a slight favourite.

In the Nole-Stan match, if it was a match in best of three format, it would probably be a beat down. But when playing a longer match, Stan usually goes va banque against Novak, and if it works it is extremely dangerous. I guess the serve could be the deciding factor, but here, we don’t really know where both players are: Novak has excellent stats, but I wouldn’t say that Muller or Raonic are good at returning serve. On the other side, Wawrinka isn’t a great returner either, he tends to slice the ball, and Novak is very efficient in this case. Then, Stan didn’t serve great again GGL, but I read (and checked the stats), he served clearly better against Kei, with good speed and variety.

Just like you wrote, Novak usually needs time to find his groove after having played big servers. His BH DTL was almost inexistant against Raonic (he made few), but he didn’t need to play it. He has to make Stan run and defend his BH, to move the ball around, play low and fast.

So, we’ll see. It could be a beat down or a tight five setter.


Yolita Says:

@mat4
Very good analysis of what Andy would need to do to beta Tomas. That match is the perfecr match for me because i like both players very much, although i would prefer Novak to meet Berdych in the final instead of Murray. :)
I am scared of Wawrinka and Novak has to start fired up from the very beginning. If he has a slow start, it could cost him the match.
We shall see.


Ben Pronin Says:

Just a reminder, Djokovic won the first set 6-2 last year and lost. At the US Open, he lost the first set 6-2 and won. And 2 years ago he lost the first set 6-1 and won. So, the start doesn’t matter all that much for either guy, really. In fact, those 3 matches say the loser of the first set will grind out the win. I think the second set is more important. Obviously for either guy to go up 2 sets would be huge. But preventing the other guy from getting too much momentum is almost as important.


Daniel Says:

I was thinking about last two Slams Murray won and suddenly I noticed an interesting stat: last two times Federer and Nadal were not in the semis guess who won those particular Slams?! Andy Murray.

Every since he became a pro in 2005 Fed or Nadal or both were in semis or better in all Slams played bar this two and either Murray lost to than or somebody else:

- Wim 2013, Nadal lot first round to Darcis and Federer second round to Stakvosky, Murray Champion.
- USO 2012, Nadal did not play and Federer lost to Berdych Quarters. Murray Champion.

This time, similar to Wimbledon 2013, both Fed and Nadal were on Murray’s side of the draw but he didn’t have to play neither of them.
Let’s see if this trend continues or if it was just twice a coincidence.

Just did a quick overview of all last Slams since Murray became a pro in 2005, that is 40 Slams played, 41 if we include this AO. All times Fed or Nadal or both were semis or beyond. Exception, those two events.

2014
USO 14′ Fed semis Nadal did not play
Wim 14′ Fed finalist Nadal lost 4th round
RG 14′ Murray lost to Nadal semis
AO 14′ Murray lost to Federer quarters

2013
USO 13′ Nadal champion Fed lost Robredo 4th round
Wim 13′ Murray won
RG 13′ Murray did not play
AO 13′ Murray beat Federer semis Nadal did not play

2012
USO Murray won
Wim 12′ Federer champion Nadal lost second round
RG 12′ Nadal champion Federer semis
AO 12′ Nadal RU Federer semis

2011
Nadal won RG finalist in Wim and USO, Federer semis AO.

2010
Nadal won 3 majors (RG, Wim, USO) and Federer AO.

2009
Nadal won AO, Fed RG and Wimb and Fed was RU in USO

2008
Nadal and Fed semis in AO, Nadal won RG and Wimb, Fed USO

2007
Fed won AO, Wim, USO and Nadal won RG

2006
Fed won AO, Wim, USO and Nadal won RG

2005
Fed semis in AO, Nadal won RG, Fed won Wim and USO

I find it amusing in a funny way, curious to see if this trend will continue or it was just 2 out of 40 bizarre ramdom coincidence.


calmdownplease Says:

`I was thinking about last two Slams Murray won..`

The only two, and therefore insufficient data to draw any long term conclusions from.
And clearly it won’t continue……


metan Says:

Your late Daniel. We already mentioned it on other thread. Hahahaha
Go Andy, your chance is wide open.


jane Says:

daniel, it’s true he didn’t play fed or rafa in those, but murray did play nole in the in the finals, so one member of the big 4.

nole has played fed or rafa in every slam he’s won in either the semis or finals (or both at USO 11) except for AO 2013, where he played murray in the finals for that one. so in terms of nole and andy’s slams, they’ve always had to play at least one of the “big 4″ to win the title.

i am not sure if that’s the case for nadal because he was playing against fed so much early on, and i know it’s not the case for fed, of course, because he was winning slams before there was a “big 4.”


sienna Says:

it is of litle or no importance who played who 10 years ago.

its more relevant that Cilic is not here.
if anything Stan has shown that winning aan slam is no luck.
Cilic is the asterisk for any winner of this years Au open.
I havent seen a player perform at his Us open level.


Wog Boy Says:

Ehhh…if only Cilic was playing in Melbourne..


Edwina Millington Says:

Thought I might pop over to keep you company behind the sofa this morning.

I’m liking what we’ve seen so far – and I’m backing our boy against Big Bird. Fingers crossed.

You can’t blame Dany for decamping to Berdych nevertheless I’m still angry with him.


Margot Says:

Whatever happens us fans should feel very comforted we’re getting 2013 Andy back.
“Whatever happens,” who am I kidding?
@Yolita
There are some players I can’t bear Andy losing to. Unfortunately Berd is one of them!
@Wog Boy
Who? ……..;)
Come on Andy!


Margot Says:

@Edwina
Hey darling! How lovely to see you. Plenty of room. Hope u bought some delicious snacks….Do u remember that lovely woman, who used to make loads, then set off for the 7 seas. I wish her well.
Yep, think I’m crosser with Dani than Andy obviously is. Sad.


Wog Boy Says:

@Margot,
Good news for Andy fans, it is windy and cold in Melbourne park, not easy for Berdych to hit through Andy.


Okiegal Says:

C’mon Andy….you can do this!

@Margot ….Andy should have tried to keep this
Dani guy….I think he’s helped Berdy a bunch…..sigh…Held serve…….


Giles Says:

Berdy looking good. Let’s see.


Margot Says:

@Wog Boy
Yay!
@OK
Time for a change. Lots of years with Dani when Andy didn’t win a slam.


sienna Says:

capless Big Bird looks like 2time slamwinner. but can he play like that at buss end of set or match?

if so he wins this match.


Margot Says:

Wind not effecting Berd’s serve at the mo. He looks awesome. Trouble is it puts so much pressure on Andy’s ofyen wobbly serve.
Feeling eeyoreish tbh


Eric Says:

That is, hair gel… not suggesting any kind of nefarious gel here. Although Tomas’ hair’s immobility might be worth a look from the Inquisition.


Daniel Says:

Yes Jane ref Nole,

But the thing for Murray is that his chances go ski high if there is no Fed or Nadal in later stages, at least it were tow times he won.

Metan,

Missed the discussion in the other thread:-)

Berdy just broke Murray first set, he is holding serve at ease while Murray is struggling in all his service games.


Daniel Says:

Double BP for Murray to break right back when Berdy serving for the first set.


Eric Says:

Apparently my comment is awaiting moderation, perhaps for my extremely profane use of a synonym for “master” which a knight might direct to his immediate superior in medieval literature.

Anyway. I was merely wondering how much hair gel Berdych uses. But I just saw a strand of hair move: things are getting real. He’s fired up.


Daniel Says:

Break Andy.


Daniel Says:

Murray level at 5-5, Berdych missing a few two many balls at the night he wasn’t missing against Nadal. Looks this will go to a tiebreak


Daniel Says:

BP Andy with a venous slice.


Eric Says:

Berdych very lucky to win that game.


sienna Says:

mental midget Berdy is creeping up.

There you see why he is no slamwinner yet…
because even mental midget can overcome problems.


calmdownplease Says:

`its more relevant that Cilic is not here`

I wish you weren’t here

Cilic WHO?


Margot Says:

Andy starting to “read” Berd’s first serve. Bum had chances to br8 there!


Eric Says:

yes, but also I feel like Andy is trying to beat Tomas at his own game; this is what Richard tries to do too… anyway, Andy has been rather sharper recently, and I expected him to win anyway, but he needs to start being more creative!


Eric Says:

By Richard I meant Roger… it’s very late here! Sorry everyone.


calmdownplease Says:

^^off to bed with you Fed fan and let your pvr do it’s business for you later
We promise we won’t spoil it tell you the score :)


calmdownplease Says:

AND tell you….


Daniel Says:

What a first set of tennis so far.


mat4 Says:

Indeed, Murray won his GS without playing Rafa or Fed. It means he never managed to beat both of them at the GS. The real conclusion. In fact, he beat Rafa twice in GS, losing both time to Fed, if I remember well.

Guess I was completely right so far. Berdych started with F to F rallies, played better, broke, and then… just choked.


Daniel Says:

Bad time to break a cord for Andy, 3-3


Eric Says:

Ah, Andy, a fine exemplar of edle Einfalt und stille Grosse, as always…

Also, I’m pretty sure this set has now lasted as long as the entire women’s draw to date. Someone else can double check my math. But it feels right.


Daniel Says:

mat4,

But credito needs to be given to Murray, he became more aggressive and Berdych is second guessing missing a few shots going for too much because he knows who is on the other side.

Now with this DF 4-3 leading tiebreak we can say is a choke:-)


calmdownplease Says:

I don’t see what your point is
Fed has won many slams without Nadal Novak Murray present.
And anyway, everyone knows Murray was a basket case at the business end of slams.
The quintessential late bloomer.
Pretty good match this Im feeling Berdych has to win this set more than Andy.
Set point!


mat4 Says:

@Daniel:

Andy is the bigger fighter. Credit must be given to him just to hang in and to react the way he did, switching to BH to BH rallies, and fighting like a devil. He will probably win the match.


calmdownplease Says:

A lame way to end the set
tsk
I still think Andy is right in this.


Daniel Says:

Murray had the first set point but not much he could do as Berdych fired two first serves in a row, now second serve and he misses a FH on the net. First set (1h 15min) Berdy who still didn’t lost a set.
This match could be long, really long..


Eric Says:

Oof… rough!


mat4 Says:

Sorry. TB won the first set… so HE is my favourite again… Guess that now, whoever wins, I can write: “I told you so”, because I wrote both things.


Daniel Says:

What Berdych said when they crossed at the net: Good played?! Murray didn’t like it and looked back.


Okiegal Says:

…Berdy mouthed off something to Andy….bad mistake. The commentators said Andy told the umpire to tell Thomas not to talk to him…

..


Daniel Says:

They are looking at each other a lot during the match after winning points, this is tense.


Daniel Says:

Murray breaks winning 4 points in a row


metan Says:

Yessssss, Andy breaks him. Awesome!!!!!!


Daniel Says:

Murray flawless now and Berdych dropped his level, quick 4-0 and serve lead for Murray.


calmdownplease Says:

4-0 Berdych seems a little off the boil after edging the first set
Given how business like Andy is now he could run away with the match if Tomas is not careful.


mat4 Says:

Now we can see that Tomas doesn’t have the build of a champion, he just doesn’t have it in him. The beginning of the second set is always crucial, and he just went away.

The key for him is to play his FH on his term and to make Andy play defensive FH, but he didn’t manage to play even one since a zillion games. He completely forgot his game plan. Unbelievable.


calmdownplease Says:

I love it when Andy takes the ball on the rise
He does it more and more now


mat4 Says:

He has to. And he plays the right game for the last 7, 8 games, since 5-3 in the first.


Daniel Says:

if Murray wins this tourney or if he reaches final and Wawrinka doesn’t win the whole thing, Big 4 will resume with all for them holding top 4 positions in rankings.


Daniel Says:

All times Murray tried to drive his cross court FH hitting down with maximum power he missed in the net, at 40-15 5-6 first set, one in tiebreak and now. He can find this shot. But even so safe for a excellent second set, which still can be a bagel.


mat4 Says:

Wawrinka won’t make the final.


calmdownplease Says:

Indeed. If Murray plays aggressively I just don’t see a way for Berdych who needs the irritating, passive Andy to win.
Plus the UEs are positively streaming from Tomas


Daniel Says:

Well, he didn’t lost a set whole tourney but when he did it sure was in style, 6-0. Good for him is that if he find his game in one of next two sets he can force a fifth.

Murray wasn’t allowed to drop level after BP and he didn’t keeping his aggressive style, Berdych needs a game third set to get back in the match. Kind of is expected a small let down in the beginning of the set after a long set as it was.


Jeez Says:

Berdych won just 10 points in SET2!!

8 on his service (1st- 4/11;2nd-4/11)


Margot Says:

Never did a bagel taste so sweet…well not for a bit anyway. Andy is right in Tomas’ first serve even. His Ros is astonishing. Don’t like Berd’s nasty glares at the net btw.
Now xpecting Berd serve and Andy characteristic 3rd set dip.
On goes the roller coaster.


Michael Says:

After that set back in tie break, to come back and bagle the opponent tells something of Andy’s grit and determination.


Daniel Says:

Berdych played a decent game and this last point Andy was amazing, he is returning everything and Berdych can’t hit through him. Will be forcing more the lines and errors come up.

Important game for Berdych now after losing 7 in a row.


Wog Boy Says:

I don’t know if your commentators noticed or said something but after one point mid first set Andy gave a long a not quite nice look to Danny, that is when Berdych took offence. Jim Courier said that Andy will denie it but there is evidence, it was cought by cameras.


calmdownplease Says:

Im pleased for Dani, he’s going to become a top coach down the line (maybe),thanks to his friendship with Murray
However one can see that it might be a factor here
Andy looks like he wants to drown someone in a bath!
My point is, rather than being a hindrance it seems Dani’s appointment has added a little to Andy’s overall attitude.


mat4 Says:

I am listening to Wilanders comments, and watching the match. Couldn’t ever guess what’s happening from his comments.

Tomas is slowly reverting to his original game plan, but Andy almost doesn’t play CC.

And there is another thing. Andy developed a very angled and short CC FH to play against Rafa. And time and time again, instead of playing hard down the middle, to deny angles, Berdych let’s Andy play those angled FH against which he is without defence.


Margot Says:

@Wog Boy
Couldn’t blame him really. And I still don’t like that Berd glare!
Where’s that wind you promised…;)


Daniel Says:

Can’t see Murray losing this match, he is just playing to good. Only if he somehow this match drags and he gets tired, because his level didn’t drop a bit,only got better.


Margot Says:

@mat4
Berd just can’t bend to get low slices. Big disadvantage. Of course usually his opponents don’t get the chance to play them.


calmdownplease Says:

`I am listening to Wilanders comments, and watching the match. Couldn’t ever guess what’s happening from his comments..`

Wilander is mental, I thought that would be clear to all at this point.
Very little he says makes sense.
Berdych playing much better again.


calmdownplease Says:

Andy’s ROS is on fire Today


metan Says:

Bye bye Birdman!


calmdownplease Says:

Doctor Murray is performing the worlds first simultaneous open heart and brain surgery Tonight!


Margot Says:

@CDP
His ROS has put the heeby jeebies into Berd….
So far says she as a usual nervous Murray nutter.


calmdownplease Says:

Totally Margot dear,
Think of all the Nadal fans here going on about how
Andy didn’t have a chance etc
Plums
Having said that, we have yet to get the obligatory Murray walkabout
The Dani effect may prevent it (hopefully)
Its all in the mind and Berdy looks deflated.


calmdownplease Says:

^^I mean just because Birdy beats a way off form
Nadal doesn’t mean that he was going to be the hot favourite in this, does it?
Whatever happens now i am much more hopeful about
`murresmo` (good one)


Hippy Chick Says:

CDP Nadal fans didnt say Murray didnt have a chance,in fact most Nadal fans thought Murray had a better chance than Nadal,actually most Nadal fans had rather low expectations about his chances,but who knew eh?….


calmdownplease Says:

Actually by Nadal fans I was meaning one or two in particular.
Ahem


Margot Says:

@CDP
Andy is reading notes at changeover. Never seen him do that. He’s seeing a sports pych. From him?
Have always stuck up for darling Amelie x


calmdownplease Says:

More winners from Andy (33 to 29), serve at 67%
And protecting his 2nd serve too (50%)
Very difficult to beat with these stats
He musn’t let Berdych sneak this set
And he certainly won’t by trying to out `murray` murray in the rallies either.


calmdownplease Says:

`Have always stuck up for darling Amelie`

She’s got a jaw you could open cans with
But I stayed out of the attacks at least and am now feeling a bit more warm and snuggly about it
Uh oh that walkabout moment may have arrived


calmdownplease Says:

a VERY good hold…


calmdownplease Says:

`Andy is reading notes at changeover. Never seen him do that. He’s seeing a sports pych. From him?..`

Perhaps Kim’s food suggestions for the wedding?
Great defence from Andy but to no avail
Good match this.


calmdownplease Says:

It feels like this is going to 5 now


Felipe Says:

What a match!…i hope Berdych takes the fourth and the a nail bitting fifth


calmdownplease Says:

Oh THANK YOU TOMAS


calmdownplease Says:

Get in THERE!
I think he’s got a real shot at this final..finally
Against Novak or Stan.


calmdownplease Says:

`I tried to play very aggressive`
Re the second set
Music to Murray fans ears :)
Great stuff about Amelie
What a gent.


Margot Says:

Oh Andy Murray! You little beauty! Restored to the top 4!
Lol Dani forgot to tell Berd Andy was gonna kill his serve!
YYYYYEEEEESSS.!


metan Says:

Five star for Andy game and his determination tonight.


Hippy Chick Says:

I dont care whom you face in the final,come on now Andy lets get the title,3 times runner up please lets not make it 4,no more pussy footing about,and no more hard luck stories….


calmdownplease Says:

The other 3 times were an embarrassment
There will be no blisters and babyish antics this time
Andy is all grown up now
Finally :)


Nirmal Kumar Says:

Great tennis by Murray. Still it looked like 4th set was on Berdych’s racquet, but he did not take it. Still Andy could have taken it in 5.

Still his second serve is such a liability, he really needs to have a great serving day and none of his opponent in the finals would be depending on the serve like Berdych does.

It’s a different ball game in the finals. Unless the 2nd semi goes for 5 hrs or more, Andy would be the underdog for the finals.


calmdownplease Says:

NKuma
Have you ever posted here without a withering Fedal attempt at belittling Andy?
If you have I’ve yet to see it
And frankly you’re not fit to carry Andy’s bags for him..


Margot Says:

PS
Sean:
Thanks for the excellent pick!
Just let Andy fans enjoy the moment. Sunday is another day!


Hippy Chick Says:

CDP yeah and good,and personally i prefer a little annymosity between the players,as it fired our Andy up after losing that first set,i think IMO he should distance himself from his rivals if he wants to reverse the losing trend, hes too friendly with Novak and Rafa at times….


Michael Says:

The key take aways for Andy in this match is that he recorded a good first serve percentage and most importantly even refined his weak second serve to an extent which was not easy to attack. His tactical manoeuvures on Court was simply outstanding and he just outclassed Berdych from the back of the court and thereby frustrating his opponent that the later was shanking at will especially from his forehand which is seen as explosive as well as prone to errors. It was simply not Berdych day and his shot making lacked conviction and rythm. Despite winning the first set by a whisker, he couldn’t convert that huge advantage into an opportunity and just allowed Andy to run away with the second even suffering the humiliation of a bagel. The third set too went Andy’s way and he looked far superior. But in the fourth set, the honours were even, but Berdych blinked at 5 all and passed the baton to Andy to serve for the match.

A great win for Andy and this is his fourth final at this tournament. He should never let go of this fine opportunity and must do all that he can to win his first Title. My sympathies are with Andy. He deserves to win this Title for all that he has done here over the years.


calmdownplease Says:

With Rafa yes perhaps
But remember 2014 was not the real Andy Murray
He is yet to have his own `white heat` moment like the others have (and on more than one occasion)
The surgery put paid to the time I thought it could happen.
But with a little momentum here well, you never know


Patson Says:

Congrats to Murray fans. The man is playing good tennis.


Okiegal Says:

Hip hip hooray for Andy! Congratulations to all the Murray fans on TX. I knew Berdy did the wrong thing on change over. Andy caught on fire after that and took over. Good for him…….now finish the job!! AO 2015 is in your hands……almost! GOOD LUCK!


Emily Says:

Ok, now come the nerves about tonight, but congrats to Murray. You could feel the tension during the match.


Emily Says:

In Murray’s interview, they asked about him getting a time violation b/c Kim was using some “Anglo-Saxon adjectives.” I heard he got a violation, but I missed these so-called adjectives. Did anyone catch that and why would it result in a time violation?


calmdownplease Says:

Yes!
She said `F**king love it you flash Czech f**k`
Most think its f**king HAVE it but it looks like Love to me,
Well I never!
Heres’ me thinking our Kim was the epitome of an English rose.
Changes my view quite a bit
lol


Daniel Says:

Wasn’t able to see the end of the match. Major congrats to Murray who is rock solid this year. He got 2 comebacks in a row, fourth set agains Dimi and won and today first set when
Berdy was serving 5-3. That was when he got his tooth in the match.
Berdych didn’t have a great serving day and Murray second was way better than the past.

Now into another final where he will most likey face Novak yet again. Djoko denied him 2 times in AO and have a 4 match streak. Andy will need to draw confidence for the fact that he beat Djoko twice in Slams, so he can do it.

If it is Wawrinka depend a lot of Wawa form.

Refardless next two matches will be great, Djoko x Wawa rematch kf last year and winner agaisnt Murray. Can’t see the level of play dropping by either of them who are all playing great.


KatH Says:

To Margot

Didn’t need to hide behind your settee – but many thanks for the offer!!!!! PS: But I did have a bunch of crystals close by – not sure if they were for me or for Andy.

I really enjoyed the match, especially the result – don’t really expect Andy to win the final but glad he made it anyway.


calmdownplease Says:

Actually I think he will win (as long as he remains aggressive, serves well)
Also glad he is through for the AO too
It’s been a good tournament and Berdych would have folded like a cheap suit against Novak, not a fitting end to a fun slam


Ben Pronin Says:

If Djokovic comes through to the final, Murray’s going to have to serve extremely well to win. Baseline play between them is 50-50 but Murray’s second serve looked like it was begging to be killed. Leave it to Berdych to miss a bunch of easy returns but it’s nothing unusual. Wawrinka can wallop second serves too but I’d expect him to miss a few the same way Berdych did.


calmdownplease Says:

No 65% is `extremely well` enough,
The court is still playing a little faster even in early evening.
Which helps his cause somewhat.
Also he usually gets a lot of aces in to get him out of trouble as well.
Including Today
If his 2nd serve was anything like his first it would be one of the best on the tour.


Giles Says:

Was it really necessary for Kim Sears to use that gutter language? Shame on her. It’s only a tennis match Kim!


calmdownplease Says:

my point is 2nd serve lost points are already calculated into the equation and balanced out a little too by the aces.


Nirmal Kumar Says:

I never brought in Roger or Nadal in the discussion. I said the obvious. Stan is coming from the high of winning Davis cup and a better tournament at WTF. Novak, obviously the favourite against anyone today. So not sure where do we place Andy among them yet. If someone picks him as the favourite against Novak or Stan, that would surprise me. But that does not mean he cannot beat them .


Nirmal Kumar Says:

hes too friendly with Novak and Rafa at times

This is a lame excuse. He is not 10-0 against both of them. He had beaten them on GS matches. So friendship is the last thing in their matches. Just that other two are better tennis players, Murray gets beaten.


calmdownplease Says:

She wasn’t saying it as an excuse for his losses
the point was about intensity and competitiveness
Anything else to contribute Einstein?


alice Says:

@nirmal kumar

yes I agree with you. the BBC commentators here who know Murray personally are always going on about how intensely competitive he is and how he hates losing. it’s really absurd to say that his being friendly with other players affects the outcome.


calmdownplease Says:

You said before it was highly unlikely Andy would win this tournament
Well lets see how it plays out but either way it is a long way from being `highly unlikely`.
As for Wawrinka somehow being a better player than Andy
bwahhahaha!
He shouldn’t have even won last year.


Emily Says:

@Nirmal Kumar, agree with you. If Stan gets to the final, he actually beat Murray last time they met at the 2013 US Open in straight sets and I think getting through Novak would give him an extra boost of confidence. These are stats based on a hypothetical, but I’m keeping hope alive. Hopefully, Stan bringing his family this year will inspire him to play his best tonight.


alice Says:

if Nole and Stan play another very long match may it not affect the outcome of the final? they will have a day’s less rest and if the final goes long that could well be a determining factor…


Ben Pronin Says:

Djokovic played Murray for days, had 1 day rest, and then beat Nadal in a match that lasted weeks.

He also played Wawrinka for days in the 4th round and won the tournament. And Wawrinka played him long last year and won the tournament.


Emily Says:

@alice, hard to say at this point. However, Stan rolled in his semi last year after his 5 set QF and everyone said the same about Rafa before the 2009 final after his epic semi. There’s a definite disadvantage to playing the 2nd semi, but we’ll have to wait and see what happens tonight.


Emily Says:

I think the time it most affected the result of a grand slam final was Wimbledon 2013, recently at least, when Djokovic was obviously spent physically and mentally from his semi against Delpo.


calmdownplease Says:

@Emily
Well let’s hope he gets through Novak then, I know who Andy will be rooting for.
Me too lol
And he will need all the support he can muster.
But it seems unlikely that he gets through both Andy and Novak when they are playing well.
Sorry : (


alice Says:

@emily
@ben

yes I take your point. am a bit biased because I will be rooting for either Nole or Stan so don’t want them to suffer…am a Rafa fan but Nole is my second fave so want him to win. about time he won on his best surface…also think he should have more than 7 slams to his name given his brilliance these last years.


calmdownplease Says:

`Wimbledon 2013, recently at least, when Djokovic was obviously spent physically and mentally from his semi against Delpo..`

Why wasn’t he `spent` against Nadal after his 5hr match against Andy in this very same tournament 3 years ago?


Ben Pronin Says:

I hope Djokovic wins, too. I think he’s the slight favorite tonight and would be the slight favorite in the final. But the 3 remaining guys are all playing extremely well and they would all be deserving of the trophy.

But since I’m a stickler for controversy I’m going to point out that should Murray win this title, he’ll once again have won a slam without having to go through either Nadal or Federer. That is some serious luck no matter how you spin it.


alice Says:

@emily

yes that definitely did affect the final but I never thought Nole would win that one as he has such problems with partisan crowds. even if he had come out shattered if he had played Murray on a neutral court the result would have been different – not saying he would have won but he would have played a lot lot better


calmdownplease Says:

I see Ben Pronin has already made my point.
Emily is a bit biased
just a bit then lol


calmdownplease Says:

`he’ll once again have won a slam without having to go through either Nadal or Federer. That is some serious luck no matter how you spin it..

What?
After Today when Andy smashed Berdych do you really think Nadal would have pulled it off a win against him?
Its only a few days ago Berdych crushed him (and yes Rafa is coming back from injury)
Anyway there’s still time for that later in the year.


calmdownplease Says:

`pulled off`

oh dear


Emily Says:

@calmdownplease, I appreciate that we all have our favorites and congrats to Andy, but I have to disagree w/ 10:02 comment saying Stan didn’t deserve to win last year. Beating #1 and #2 in the same tournament hadn’t happened for around 20 years I believe so you can’t take that away from him.

I don’t know who’s going to win tonight, but I wouldn’t count Stan out.


calmdownplease Says:

`not saying he would have won but he would have played a lot lot better..`

I agree had the crowds been more neutral he and it was less hot (which seemed to affect him) that he would have played better maybe even taking it to 5
But Andy’s name was on that title that year.
Dont agree it was anything to do with being `tired` however.
And Murray had been on court for a few hours longer than Novak up to that point.


alice Says:

@ ben

yes agreed. and by definition Murray can never go on the same kind of tear that Nole went on in 2011 when he played unbelievable tennis against Rafa and Fed. it’s 4 years later and Fed is not the same player now he’s older (although still amazing) and Rafa is bedevilled with injuries and has been playing part-time on the tour since 2012.


Ben Pronin Says:

A bit biased? CDP you are one of the most biased fans I’ve ever come across.

No I don’t think Nadal, given the current state of his game, would have beaten Murray. But that’s not my point. Had Nadal been playing well and reached the semis, that’s a different story. My point stands. Murray has a chance to win a THIRD slam without having faced either Nadal or Federer. Since the Big 3 domination started, Djokovic has won 1 slam without have to face either of Fedal out of 7. Del Potro beat both. Cilic beat Federer. Wawrinka beat Nadal.

I mean it’s kinda moot because whoever does win will have done so without beating them, not just Murray. But for Murray it’d be the third time. That is lucky. That is very lucky.


calmdownplease Says:

I didn’t say he didn’t deserve it
He most certainly did deserve it!
He beat the title holder and World Number 1 (or two I forget which then)
But he was lucky in that Nadal became injured in the match and could not compete or even hope to turn it around
Luckier even than Andy Murray never facing Fedal in his slam wins ;)
lol


calmdownplease Says:

`A bit biased? CDP you are one of the most biased fans I’ve ever come across..`

Mirror please!

Fine, he was lucky but they have all had lucky breaks
And for example played against lesser opponents than the world number one to get the first and second and possibly third title.
Eh Ben Pronin?


Ben Pronin Says:

Facing an injured Nadal in the biggest final of your life vs not facing Nadal at all? Hmm… I’d still rather play Berdych.


Emily Says:

Also, @Ben, I try to avoid controversy whenever possible and I think my posts are fairly amiable. I think you’ve got me on the wrong side of the fence, b/c I actually do agree that Novak was affected by the partisan crowd and I’m not taking Andy’s win away from him. It was simply an example of a semi possibly affecting a final.

I just prefer mutual respect for everyone’s faves and credit where credit is due.


calmdownplease Says:

`Facing an injured Nadal in the biggest final of your life vs not facing Nadal at all? Hmm… I’d still rather play Berdych..`

That’s illogical.
Nadal was going through the motions Berdych would have been far more difficult under the circumstances.


Ben Pronin Says:

Emily, I agree. I didn’t see anything particularly biased with your posts. Everyone’s gonna have slighted tinted glasses when referring to their favorites. But CDP likes to get butt hurt whenever something remotely negative is said about Murray. It’s not a big deal. Anyone with eyes could tell that Djokovic was not at his best physically and probably mentally after the semifinal. Just because he did it in Australia doesn’t mean he was able to fully recover at Wimbledon.

And maybe, just maybe, for Djokovic, recovering from running around the court against Murray and Nadal is easier for him than recovering from handling Del Potro’s 120 mph forehands for 4+ hours. I’m not saying this is 100% true, but maybe that’s the reason he wasn’t fully recovered that time. But don’t tell CDP since it wasn’t the direct work of Andy Murray.


calmdownplease Says:

Oh yes recovering from Delpo is easier than recovering from Nadal and Andy
He should have played better and shortened the match
Murray screwed up his AO final by not being clinical against Fed 2 years ago.
Blistergate and all.
And I am sorry I disagree with you Ben but Im certainly not `butt hurt` about it.
I just think you are wrong on this occasion.


calmdownplease Says:

I think some of the people posting here right now are seemingly not self aware enough to realise that there is a distinct bias in their posts also. Perhaps due to the fact that they are too busy complaining about other peoples biases.
How unfortunate….


Emily Says:

@Ben, sorry, I just thought you wanted to start a controversy on Andy’s 2013 win based on my comment on performances in semis vs. finals. Thanks for the back-up since I think discussion is more interesting then arguing, but I understand the desire to stick up for your favs. I just avoid going after their rivals as much as possible, which is why I’ve already congratulated Andy and his fans.


Ben Pronin Says:

What? No, recovering from Del Potro is harder. Was that not clear?

Djokovic had 80 winners. He didn’t play bad by any stretch. He just happened to be playing against someone who was equally not playing bad.

This is where the rather strange bias comes in. Murray should have been clinical against Federer? Blistergate? I really hope you’re joking.

There are a million and one factors in every match that is played. As much as we pretend “it’s on [insert favorite player]‘s racquet,” it’s really not. It’s never on just one player’s racquet. Not fully, anyway. It can’t be. There’s too much going on. Since you’re a butt-hurt Murray fan, you see it as “Murray messed up by not winning the tiebreakers.” The diehard Fedfans say “Federer was brilliant in taking those tiebreakers.” The truth is a mix of both.

And if you really wanna excuse Murray for playing poorly due to blisters then you have a lower opinion of him than I do.


calmdownplease Says:

Look I said the whole blistergate didnt say what my view on it was (IE I didnt approve of Andy’s behaviour)
But there was some kind of foot problem and he let it get in the way of that final.
As his game disappeared.
As for the Fed Murray match it seemed to me from the get go Andy would win but his decisions at key moments were frankly bizarre and fed was flawless in capitalising on them.
So yes it was a bit of both.
But initiated by Andy’s bad judgement and perhaps nervousness.
Anyway whatever
water under the bridge and all that.


alice Says:

@ ben

I actually think that the loss of the 2012 US Open was a lot worse than losing Wimbledon. Nole should have won that tournament and he played a poor final. IMO his game went off once he started losing to Rafa again…before having Rafa in his pocket seemed to give him huge self-belief…once he lost finals and then roland garros he started to lose matches he would have won before. he would have won the US that year if the decline mentally hadn’t already set in.


Daniel Says:

Ben has a point, in Olympics final Federe didn’t recover from semis with Del Potro and lost tamely in finals to Andy, and that on grass:-)
2 cases of players not recovering from a DelPo match.

If andy win this AO, it can be great for his year, he will be co-favorite in Wimbledon together with Djokovic (than Fed and a few others who can play on grass: Berdych, Raonic, Dimi) and US Open as well. But USO is the most open Slams as basically all top 10 can win it. There everybody can beat everybody.
So maybe this is finally a year Andy could win 2 Slams and challenging #1.
Right now Djoko and Fed are safe to clay season as #1 and #2 even if they don’t win anything else just with some decent results in Dubai/IW/Miami.
Will see, for either of them winning will be a trigger for a great year. Djoko can get close to 10 and Murray will be RG away from a Career Slam himself. One day Nadal won’t be winning RG and maybe both Djoko and Andy can get a piece. If Andy keeps his aggressiveness it will translate to better clay results.

But first things first, who he will play in the final? Than think about champion.


Nirmal Kumar Says:

the point was about intensity and competitiveness

anything u say for a loss is an excuse. saying he has less intensity is a lame excuse. then how did he beat them few other times? did he pick the match to be less intense and less competitive?


Daniel Says:

Another data is Djoko recent impressive record in finals. After losing 2 finals in 2013 (Wimby to Murray and USO to Nadal), apart from RG 2014, Djoko won all 14 finals he played.

But his problem is, the only tournaments he is losing last 2 years are majors: 2 in 2013 and 1 in 2014. He won everything else in between.
if he indeed wants to revert his 7-7 record in major finals he has to take this chance as well, specially as this is his best Slam.


brando Says:

Well done Midas! Must say though: I only saw the first set and in the final-especially v Djokovic if it is- he needs to sort out that 2nd serve since in a word its: s–t! He’ll get spanked a 3rd time by Novak if that is what he offers in the final. Other than that though he seems like he has a chance with his play to do himself justice.


Nirmal Kumar Says:

I’m surprised people undermine Murray’s GS title for not facing Rafa or Roger. It would be true had he not beaten them in the slams. But that’s not the case. Any GS win is great no ifs and buts.


brando Says:

Re Andy faring better v Djokovic when not facing fedal: is that rocket science to understand? You tell me who you want to face in a grand slam final: a 17 time major champion or a 14 time major champion or a 7 time major champion? We don’t need Einstein to return to inform us its best to face the 7 time champion especially when the other 2 combined you are looking at 2 wins in completed matches out of 13 matches, whereas with Novak you have actually won 2 slam finals. You would think not a tough one to understand who Andy would rather face.


skeezer Says:

NK,
Don’t be surprised at that, that just fans that don’t know the game.
Fact: Murray worked is way the the finals,
Fed/Rafa could not. They don’t deserve to face Murray at this GS.They never got that far. Murray is the better player this year at AO. He’s in the final. I am sure both Fed/Rafa would own up to that if asked.


Nirmal Kumar Says:

If you ask Andy today, he might feel his chances are better against Nadal than Novak.


Margot Says:

@KatH
Dear old sofa was not needed after the first set!
I’ll say it again, gr8 to have you aboard.:)
@CDP 11.03
Lol: I am objective, you are biased
I am asserive, you are aggressive
I make legitimate excuses, you whine
I say tomayto, you say tomarto
etc etc
And while I’m here, an * could probably be put against every loss our favourite has. Enough already.


brando Says:

@Nirmal: today Andy would prefer Rafael and on this court you would take a full form nadal over full form novak. 4>1.


Okiegal Says:

@Margot 12:57…….Loved this comment. LOL Major
eye roll!! What’s all this talk about what went on
a year or two ago??? Everyone needs to pop back into reality, that was then….this is now. Was so glad Andy won, hope he can beat whoever is across the net. He’s playing like the old Andy. Kudos to him!!


Margot Says:

Thank you OK darling :)

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