Tennis fans know that Roger Federer rarely looks rattled out on the court and rarely does he lose his cool, no matter what the situation.
Last night, facing the biggest serve in tennis, Federer kept his compsure despite being down break points and some incredible shot-making from the American.
“I think this time of my career, I see a dropshot when it comes back,” Federer said. “It’s obviously just one point. Like an ace is just a point. Like a horrible error is just a point. When you lose it, you see it as, All right, this point was a great shot but it didn’t count 10.
“The scoring system is awesome in tennis. It’s like you can switch in a heartbeat. That’s why you have to stay calm at all times, in my opinion. I feel like if I conserve energy by not fist pumping every single point, looking at the big picture, I feel like I can play better throughout.
“I think once you find that peace, that place of peace and quiet, harmony, I don’t know what you want to call it, and confidence, that’s when you start playing your best.
“I tried to turn the corner in 2001 in Hamburg when I lost to Squillari. I was so angry I lost that match. The attitude was wrong. So much was wrong about it. The match point was wrong. I squeezed the ball between the racquet and the court and the volley. I looked where had the volley gone, and the ball was like lying on the ground. I was looking, What the hell is going on here? He was in the back fence trying to hit pass. I couldn’t make the valley. I got so angry, I smashed the racquet. I was like, This is enough. I can’t take this attitude anymore? To me that was a changing moment in my career and my attitude.”
Federer will test his calmness tomorrow night against Richard Gasquet in the US Open quarterfinals.
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