Federer Can’t Beat Raonic and Illness in ATP Brisbane Final
by Jeremy Davis | January 10th, 2016, 11:09 am

Roger Federer had to play “Australian Doubles” on Sunday in the final of the Brisbane International — him on one side of the court, and on the other side the doubles team of Milos Raonic and the flu bug the Swiss thought he had put behind him this week.
In the end Raonic and the illness were too much for the 34-year-old, who fell in the final 6-4, 6-4 to the big-serving Canadian.

“I’ve still got a cough and the throat is a bit weird,” said Federer, who was limiting his practices early in the week, and saw his health seemingly improved until a turn on the final day. “I’ve definitely got to make sure I get over it as quickly as possible.”

It was a switch of last year’s Brisbane final where Federer had prevailed over Raonic, who collected his eighth career title.

“It feels great,” said Raonic, who improved to 2-9 against Federer. “It feels great considering how the past nine months have been. It adds a sort of cherry on top to all that. [This] does great things. For myself it signifies within the team how concrete and good the work we’re doing is. At the same time, with the difficulties I’ve had last year, it’s maybe a good way for me to show the other guys I will face going in Melbourne that I’ve got my stuff back together and I can play some good tennis again.”

Raonic took a medical time-out after the third game of the second set.

“Just a little bit the adductor,” the Canadian explained. “So just after the time-out it was a little bit hard to push off just until I got my legs going, and I think that’s why [the serves] were sort of floating long on me and the last one came short on me.”

The 25-year-old Raonic suffered through foot and back injuries last year, and during the off-season added former world No. 1 Carlos Moya to his camp as a coach, dropping coach and former player Ivan Ljubicic, who Federer then added to his team.

“Against [Federer] it’s always about who can dictate,” Raonic said. “I felt that other than maybe one service game where I double faulted three times, I was staying quite a bit ahead on my serve and always close on his, except for one that I lost at love. I felt like most of the other ones I was getting to 30. I was giving myself opportunities and then was able to capitalize twice.”

Federer fell to 88-48 in tour finals after reaching a third consecutive Brisbane final, while Raonic improved to 8-8.


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25 Comments for Federer Can’t Beat Raonic and Illness in ATP Brisbane Final

Tennis Vagabond Says:

I was hoping Federer could take the title to start the year, but its still a great beginning to show that at 34 he’s still going to be around late in tournaments.

I’m still very happy for Milos. He could never get a rhythm together last year with his injuries. He was improving at a great clip before that, and I would love to see him back in some Slam semis this year, and challenging at the very top. Or, almost the very top if Novak is still another stratosphere.

Giles Says:

Skeezer is conspicuous by his absence. Where are you? There’s a fed thread for you to comment on.

tennismonger Says:

There was a time when professional tennis players were loathe to discuss injuries. You were fit to play or you were not.

Now all the top players discuss them like they are a new shirt or racket that they’re trying out.

Somewhere, Harry Hopman is spinning in his grave…

tennismonger Says:

…that said, congrats to Milos – he’s obviously been putting in the work & it’s good to see him back on the radar so soon.

Ben Pronin Says:

Federer steals his coach and Raonic steals his title!

Still, Federer went through two other “young guns” to get to the final so his game isn’t in bad shape. Happy for Raonic. I know not a lot of people like his one dimensional game but I really respect him for working so hard and I hope it pays off in big ways in the future.

madmax Says:

Absolutely TV,

Raonic went through a lot in 2014, injury after injury, so the time is right for him. I remember when he came onto the scene and he was definitely “the one” to climb up the rankings, then he was laid down by injuries, recovered, then injured again. Good for him!

Federer did not play bad at all. He was fit enough for the final, just not at his best and to be expected with kids around I guess.

Keep fit Fed and prosper!

jane Says:

^ true ben; congrats to milos.

and also to wawrinka, who beat coric. looks like the last set was a tight one but i missed the match.

Daniel Says:

Couldn’t ser the match. stuck in Mia for 6 h waiting a conncetion for New Orleans. Awful Sunday.

Glad for Milos and for Fed fibal s all things considere is good resul. Reat and reviver in time for AO.
Hope this title brings good fortune for Milos.

Gypsy Gal Says:

For Emily if shes reading big Congrats to Stan and Milos on titles this weekend,hope your tuning in girl ;)….

Wog Boy Says:

“dropping coach and former player Ivan Ljubicic, who Federer then added to his team.”

Not quite accurate.

“Federer steals his coach and Raonic steals his title!”

More accurate.
By Milos own words he doesn’t have bad feelings towards Ljubicic and understood Ljubicic when he told him that he wants to coach somebody of Roger calibre, meaning that he was approached by team Federer and made an offer that he couldn’t refuse. By Roger’s own words he knew well in advance that Edberg won’t be staying beyond two years and had plenty of time to look for the new coach. Watching Ljubicic in Roger’s box I had a feeling that he feels very important sitting in the GOAT box. My opinion is that he did a favor to Milos by leaving him, Carlos Moya in combination with Riccardo Piatti is winning combination for Raonic. I don’t know how on the earth I miss putting him in my top10 selection, the moment I posted it I realize I complete forgot Raonic.

Wog Boy Says:

This was fair result, flu or not flu, considering how badly Milos chocked in the last year Brisbane final against Federer.
Congrats to Milos and his team.

Humble Rafa Says:

Skeezer is conspicuous by his absence. Where are you?

3 of his 10 cats suffer from fever. So naturally, he is taking care of them.

Humble Rafa Says:

Watching Ljubicic in Roger’s box I had a feeling that he feels very important sitting in the GOAT box.

Where can I find more information on the goat box?

Wog Boy Says:

“Where can I find more information on the goat box?”

You own it, don’t you remember?

Dan the Man Says:

Congrats to Milos, it appears he is back again. He was ranked #4 at the time of his injury and slide. Milos is now the only player born in the 1990s to beat Federer more than once. I’m a Federer fan too, but this result shows that Federer needs to be in peak form to beat Raonic, which puts Raonic in quite an elite group.

Humble Rafa Says:

I only own the goat..goat wife, goat kids, goat box etc are not mine. They are managed by aliens.

elina Says:

Cough, cough, sniffle, bird flu, SARS, anthrax.

Gypsy Gal Says:

I think it was MMT a few days ago that said,there used to be a time when players didnt discuss injury or illness now it seems everybody does,something along those lines anyway?….

MMT Says:

I absolutely detest when players claim injuries after a match – and while Federer doesn’t typically retire unless the injury is severe, his tendency to discuss them at all is irritating. It just serves no purpose, and as I pointed out in my Federer/Djokovic rivalry post here (http://tennis-column.blogspot.com/2012/10/the-relationship-between-federer-and.html) he has a tendency to do so only when he loses. It’s one thing when you’re on the winning end of a match where he has claimed injury – as annoying as that is – but can you imagine if you’re one of the bottle that LOST to him while injured/sick/sad/distracted?

It was, for many years, an unwritten rule that was observed for a good reason. The other guy is almost certainly carrying some knock, it denigrates his victory, and the players you beat just look like absolute clowns.

I don’t like it, and I never will.

Gypsy Gal Says:

MMT Fantastic post completely agree,really refreshing to here of a poster here that doesnt use double standards either,you see being the same for all….

Ben Pronin Says:

I completely understand why people don’t like players to discuss injuries, but I don’t agree.

In team sports, all injuries must be disclosed and reported. Even if the injured player is still going to play. In the NFL, they’re designated with Probable, Questionable, Doubtful, etc. And I don’t have a problem with this.

As far as the psyche of players goes, I think it’s pretty obvious why Federer or Nadal would say “I lost because I was injured”. It protects the aura and sends the message that they would never lose healthy. It’s not true, obviously. A healthy Nadal or Federer can still lose, but why wouldn’t they do whatever they can to maintain the psychological advantage? Especially when everyone’s yelling to high heavens about how mental tennis is? But of course fans take everything personally, so again, I understand why it’s annoying.

But back to my original point. The ATP and/or ITF should absolutely create a reporting system for injuries. All anyone can do is speculate about injuries and wonder/complain about everyone retiring. But at the very least, reporting would give everyone a chance to examine trends and popular ailments and probable recovery time and so on that would inevitably help the tour and future generations by better understand what is happening with their bodies.

As it stands, Nadal has mysterious knee injuries, Federer and Murray have mysterious back injuries, and Djokovic has mysterious asthma and wrist and neck and sars problems. And everyone else is vying for the record number of retirements in a career.

Gypsy Gal Says:

What really is annoying isnt so much the injuries,or the players talking about the injuries,or even the posters here talking about the injuries,as we all do that,its the double standards people use….

MMT Says:

The mental game is completely overrated: players don’t lose because of some ethereal aura – they lose because they’re not good enough to win (on the day). The aura may be the excuse they give, or some coach who doesn’t have the knowledge or the commitment to making improvements (and takes the easy way out, as in “You have all the tools you need, you just don’t BELIEVE you do.” Man, what a racket that is!) but it’s not at all the reason. And as you’ve pointed out, these guys lose when they’re healthy, so it’s not even effective.

So the real question is why they do it – I think it’s for the sponsors and fans (i.e. for the money). If you don’t know tennis, but you’ve just plunked down $10M on an endorsement contract to a guy who is suddenly losing more often than he wins, you want to hear something…anything…that makes you worry a little less that you may have overplayed your hand.

But I still don’t like it!

MMT Says:

[he said as he childishly crossed his arms, closed his eyes, pursed his lips, shook his head and stomped his feet in childish defiance]

Ben Pronin Says:

Double standards will always and forever exist among the fans. That’s never going away no matter what the players are disclosing or not.

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