8 Things I Think About Novak Djokovic’s 24, Coco Gauff’s First And The US Open

by Sean Randall | September 12th, 2023, 8:56 am

Wrapping what turned out to be a very in-form US Open

1) Net Novak
Novak Djokovic took the last 15 sets of the tournament with in an incredible 1 hour, 34 minute stand in the second set of the final. Djokovic made full use of his vast arsenal to keep Daniil Medvedev from leveling. Djokovic finished 37/44 at the net and won 20/22 serve-and-volley points.

Every time you looked up, Djokovic was at the net, taking advantage of Medvedev’s deep court position and the Russian’s desire to prolong rallies.

I don’t think either player had a great serving day — Djokovic was low on his first serve (54%) and Medvedev got hammered on his second (won just 38%). The two were about even off the ground but Djokovic’s net play was the difference as he won double to Medvedev (44 to 22). And guess what the total point difference was? It was 21 (118 to 97).

2) 24 And More
So Djokovic finishes 2023 with three of the four Grand Slams and was a backhand from winning Wimbledon (that doesn’t mean he would have won the US Open, though).

Point is, at age 36 he’s still as dominant as ever. He might night be as good as ever, but with the landscape as it is — really just Carlos Alcaraz — Djokovic will continue to rack up big titles especially if Alcaraz stumbles under the weight of the growing pressure.

Djokovic just has to stay healthy and that Cincinnati title now is in Carlos’s head. That’s going pay off again down to the road.

3) Just Add Coco
A magical summer closed in perfect style for Coco Gauff who became the first American to win a Slam in over three years. And unlike the last winner — Sofia Kenin — I have a feeling it won’t be her last.

Gauff used her legs to track down enough balls to get her title. Aryna Sabalenka knows just one way to play and when that starts faltering and her shots miss, she loses.

Coco knew that, waited out that first set onslaught, saved those early break points in the second and then trusted her legs and trusted the Belarussian’s level would drop. It’s risky, but it worked.

Good for her.

Just 19, she speaks like she’s 49. She’s almost too mature for her age. I think Gauff’s legacy in the end will go far, far beyond the courts.

4) Alcaraz Falls Short
Defending a Grand Slam title is hard. Really hard. And Carlos Alcaraz found that out. The kid has basically been playing with house money but that’s changing now.

He’s expected to win Grand Slam matches, just about all them including semifinal ones against Daniil Medvedev. The pressure is only going to ramp up even more. That ever-present smile is probably going to go.

The 20-year-old did not have a great summer by his lofty standards with losses to Tommy Paul and to Djokovic. But he seemed to have found the form early on in New York.

However all the credit to Medvedev who grinded out the first leaving Alcaraz lost. Like a fighter who got hit, Alcaraz was stunned, wobbled and dropped to the mat. He got back up but it was too late.

Alcaraz is still going to be among the favorites if not the favorite in every event he plays in for the next 15 months. And he’s still got a chance in…

5) The ATP Race For #1
Alcaraz and Djokovic are now turning their attention to the 2023 year-end race for No. 1.

Alcaraz lost the US Open and the No. 1 ranking, but he can still finish the year on top for a second straight season.

Just 1,300 points behind or so, Alcaraz is well within striking distance with 1000 events like Shanghai and Paris plus the 1,500 ATP finals ahead. The question is how much will they play?

I expect Alcaraz to make that first Asian trip but Djokovic, at his age, might skip it and focus more on Europe’s indoor wars.

No doubt he’s love to finish No. 1 for a record 8th time, but at the risk of overplaying and potentially damaging a title run in Melbourne?

6) The WTA Race For #1
Similar to the men’s, Sabalenka has about a 1,300 point lead over Iga Swiatek.

After stumbling out of the US Open, I expect Swiatek to bounce back. Sabalenka will do well, also. My guess is it will come down to that new WTA finals events in Cancun to decide it.

7) The Future Is Already Here
Coco, Carlos and Ben are all under 21, all once again were in the spotlight the last week of a Slam. And Swiatek is just 22, Sabalenka isn’t that old at 25. Jannik Sinner is 22, Holger Rune 20, Elena Rybakina just 24. And on and on. Not mention all the younger players like Mirra Andreeva, Alex Michelson, the Czech teens along with Jack Draper and Arthur Fils. These players could all be Top 10ers.

The change isn’t coming. It’s here.

Carlos, Iga and Coco stand out especially since they’ve already won Slams but their results will no doubt inspire the rest of the pack.

With Djokovic still a force in the the seas will be choppy for the men, but it seems like smooth sailing in the women’s where changes can happen and can happen quick.

8) The US Open Smells Like Success
Weird things happens at the US Open. Courts bubble, hurricanes hit, people glue their feet to floors and the smell of weed can permeate throughout the grounds. But despite Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Serena Williams not playing this year, the tournament still saw record crowds, packed stadiums and enthusiastic fans.

Djokovic still won for the men, but the women’s game has already moved on from the Serena generation. And that’s not just a success for the US Open but for the sport as a whole. Tennis seems as healthy as ever!

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76 Comments for 8 Things I Think About Novak Djokovic’s 24, Coco Gauff’s First And The US Open

Incy _Wincy _ Spider Says:

Thankfully Novak has equalled Margaret Courts 24,and will most likely surpass it come February next year, tennis has no place for a transphobic, racist, homophobic, horrible woman like her….

Wog Boy Says:

“ Just 1,300 points behind or so, …”

Let me elaborate that one. We are probably looking at different tables, if you check live rankings, Alcaraz is actually 3,760 points behind Nole, but considering that Nole defends 2,750 points (meaning he cant earn any points on tournaments he won late last year (3 plus RU in Paris) Alcaraz is only 660 points behind Nole.
He has more than good shot at YE#1 if he wins few of them and does well at WTF.
I think Spaniard is aware of it, he pulled out of DC match next week stated extra time needed to recover from busy season, he will be gunning down for YE#1.

Meanwhile, Nole is on his way to Valencia to play for Serbia in DC (he will play against Spain too).

As for damaging his chances in Melbourne, I would prefer him to finish the year as #1 whatever it takes.

I am sensing dog fight until the end of tennis year.

Wog Boy Says:

Margaret Court is a great woman that stands for what she believes in, the problem is that some people don’t accept different opinion.
Margaret Court is very respected pastor of Pentecostal church and has obligations as such to preach what she believes in, that’s her right and nobody can take that from her or any other person.
She os completely fulfilled person, as tennis player, as a mother, as a wife and as a human being, like it or not.

Wog Boy Says:

…for the record, I am not a member of Pentecostal church.

Incy _Wincy _ Spider Says:

I respect your opinion, I just don’t agree with it, and I don’t respect hers either, I would rather have somebody like BJK as a role model or Martina a breast cancer survivor, sorry for going off topic

Incy _Wincy _ Spider Says:

I don’t care what religion she is either, I believe people should be free to live their lives the way they choose without judgement, PEACE

Giles Says:

The arsehole is running wild and free with no competition about! Sooo lucky.

Patson Says:

Nole, the undisputed greatest of all time. I thought the hate against Nole would’ve gone down on this site but it hasn’t. Haters can hate as much as they want. Hopefully he can win 3-4 more grand slams before he retires.

Congrats to all fellow Novak fans.

Wog Boy Says:

Thanks Patson, likewise 🥂

mat4 Says:

Margaret Court is a remarkable woman. Her opinions are the opinions of most people in most countries of the world. Tolerance is something that queers should have too, not only normal, sane people. While it is our duty to tolerate people with illness, we can’t be forced to like them. At least in free countries.

Margaret Court, also, raised four children. She sacrificed a big part of her life for others, just like many mothers, fathers, these unsung heroes without whom there is no society and human kind at all.

Incy _Wincy _ Spider Says:

The last paragraph was fine, the rest I don’t believe what I’ve just read, what a sad world we live in, I’m out

Wog Boy Says:

Good decision, you can now go back to tenngrand, to to cry with your disgruntled Rafa fans.

Incy _Wincy _ Spider Says:

Im out of that discussion, I’ll post on here or on TG as I see fit, none of your business that’s for sure, and I’m not disgruntled either I’m perfectly fine thanks

Incy _Wincy _ Spider Says:

And you don’t intimidate me so don’t even bother trying, I congratulated the guy didn’t I

Wog Boy Says:

Do you keep track of your monikers?😂

Incy _Wincy _ Spider Says:

Yeah why

Wog Boy Says:

I am not intimidating you, I love you (I am telling you this while my wife is asleep next me in a beautiful Vienna), as for congratulation, worth noting, zero …zilch when you read the rest of your posts, you don’t expect anything else from TG Rafa fan.

Wog Boy Says:

You can change them as often as you want but why bother when your writing is so recognisable, what are you trying to achieve by posting under different monikers?

Incy _Wincy _ Spider Says:

Love you too lol, Congratulations Novak, there you go, Vienna never been sounds lovely, I live by the sea, over the wash🌊

Incy _Wincy _ Spider Says:

Change is as good as a rest as they say

Incy _Wincy _ Spider Says:

Just curious what do you think about Halep on the doping issue

Wog Boy Says:

It’s set up, if she is not from Eastern Europe she wouldn’t be charged, nevertheless convicted. It’s very fishy since they may try to strip her of her Wimbledon title and give it to Serena?!

Serena avoided doping test (panic room case) didn’t even go next nor any other day as she was supposed to and didn’t even get slap on the wrist.

Incy _Wincy _ Spider Says:

Yeah it’s all a bit unfair, she’s always treated the sport with integrity, I’m not buying it either 😢

Wog Boy Says:

^^^ Simona also hasn’t done favour to herself when she moved to Mouratoglou‘s academy, that was her mistake, that’s why Mouratoglou feels need to come out to defend her, he knows something.

Incy _Wincy _ Spider Says:

Hmm interesting theory

mat4 Says:


I do agree that the decision about Simona is unjust, having in mind how lenient the instances have been with some other players. I also agree that there have been a lot of prejudice against non-Western players.

OTOH, I believe that she could be guilty. She was tested three days before and was clean. I could guess she did not expect to be tested so soon after. But then, one thing that bothers me is that the medication in question seems to be dangerous and was not approved for use in some countries.

Anyway, I don’t know much about the supplements tennis players take, and I would be grateful for some concise explanations or a link to a somewhat comprehensive survey.

Van Persie Says:

Well, if Simona did not learn a lot about life until 2022, she started to learn then…It will be a looong match for her. She will not lose Wimbledon 2019, but this is a nasty end of a carreer.

Why spoil GOAT’s thread with this here? 🙂

Nole 24> Serena 23

Wog Boy Says:

“ Nole 24> Serena 23” 👍😂….I love it.

I am impressed with Vienna, so well preserved city, clean, the buildings are done up, no those ugly concrete and glass buildings in the city, it’s literally like moving back 100 years in Austro-Hungarian empire, if you haven’t been you must visit it.

Wog Boy Says:

Btw, GOAT was in Brlgrade the other day to meat basketball players and congratulate them for the silver from the World Championship, he is in Spain now with DC team.

Wog Boy Says:

What a welcome for basketball players and GOAT in Belgrade. he was wearing basketball team outfit, check this one up Nole fans…and the others:


I had goosebumps watching it, he cried.

chrisford1 Says:

The media are playing a political game in tennis trying to combine men and women’s records in 2 sports with a very different level of competition.
And ridiculously tries to compare athletes of different eras by 50 years.
Novak and many of the men do not want their achievements defined by that sort of “are you as impressive as this woman player?” media and PC pressure. No more than NBA players want to have their game, their performance, tied to WNBA screaming banshees who are vastly inferior to the male players.

I like watching many woman players, but it is not the same tennis level as on the mens’ side – in a big understatement. Like them and appreciate their play and careers. And that definitely includes Margeret Court.

mat4 Says:


It was all clear for years already. The “West” pushes a nauseating societal narrative, oblivious that most of the world do not accept such a worldview. I recently read a convincing sociological analysis that argues that the aim of accepting all kinds of deviant sexual behavior is the legalization of pedophilia. In fact, it seems that “homophobia” is a battle against real homophobia. It makes me all think of 1984, where the meaning of words is inverted.

Novak is a father, he has a beautiful family, he refused to get vaccinated, he refuses the narratives about his country, his people, etc. Fifty years ago, he would have been a perfect representative of his country, his sport, all sports. I still believe that he is that for most of the people. Since you cannot attack him of these points, you have to find something — and, unfortunately, there is not much left.

When I was young, I went to see a colleague. Since I did not drive a car yet, my father went with me. I told him that this colleague was divorced, and that I heard through the grapevine that he beat his ex-wife. My late father answered that he believed his own eyes: the children were well dressed, clean, the house was impeccable, everything showed a serious person, well in his place. My old man wasn’t interested in gossips.

We have to start believing our own eyes, our own judgement, and stop believing gossips. Instead of “me too”, we should say “me neither”. And really awake, being ourselves, and not something that is foreign to us.

chrisford1 Says:

Mat4 – Thanks for your thoughts, and I agree with your general beliefs about Novak and societal trends. To me, Novak is a largely admirable guy with warts.

I started following him in 2007 and have stayed a happy Novak guy since through his ups and downs and mine. (While liking other players, too. But none were as interesting or successful over their careers as Djokovic has been.) His pluses go on forever, too long to list all of – but sure, he has warts. The on-court drama queen, the always there feeling he’s always been a little “off” and had worked hard all his life to gain social acceptance – too hard at times. As Nick Kyrgios famous sledge on Djokovic went.

Highly intelligent, thoughtful, articulate and always into professional and personal self improvement. But no amount of Djokovic working on improving his personality and social interactions – or paid psychologists works, Hard to change a core personality locked in in most people by early childhood. Not helped by wartime&sanctions raised Djokovic being formed with the underdog who will fight and rise and make money no matter what. Core to his personality, IMO. And not pleasing to many that grew up under more genteel circumstances.

I’m not looking for perfection or some celeb or athlete that only seems perfect in who I like and respect the most. Novak will never win the Edberg Award. So what!

mat4 Says:


He’s very… Serbian, Chris. My sister in law is British, and I have problem understanding her, just like I have problems “getting” people from the South of France, being born in the East. Novak is a typical Serbian boy.

But indeed, his “social acceptance” rituals (the heart, etc) he started to do under the influence of his bitch wife and the Pepe Imaz were ludicrous and risible.

zed Says:

Chrisford1, you said “The media are playing a political game”. FYI, the media are ALWAYS playing a political game, it is what they do, it is what they are paid to do. The whole reason the mainstream media exist and are funded for is to be a propganda distribution mechanism. Despite this being obvious and nothing new (Goebbels laughed often at how effective it is on the masses) it still works amazingly. You only need to go to any internet discussion forum or have a chat at the pub or (God forbid) discuss something at work to see how well brainwashing works.

mat4, very wise words, your father was a wise man and I am glad to see that you have remembered his lessons.

Sadly the masses choose not to have original thought. Even if they are capable of forming original thought (and many simply can’t) most prefer not to.

I see this when there is some issue here in Australia arises, I see adults, people with grown children (and some even with grandchildren) waiting for the government broadcaster (the ABC) to guide them on what their opinion should be on the new issue. Researching, understanding the history of the issue, assessing the potential impacts, fact checking the political claims etc are all too hard. It is far easier to read an article and then convince oneself that you are informed.

Once the journalists at the ABC have provided the opinion these adults adopt that opinion as their own and argue in its favour vociferously.

The most amazing part is that, at a later date, when there is no doubt that the original stories were totally wrong or (as often happens) it is politically desirable to take the exact opposite stance, these same people happily adopt the antithesis of their prior opinions. Amazing.

In sports media, just like any other, the owners of the media outlets have financial incentive to support corporate or government interests, they are literally bribed (via advertising revenue) to censor some opinions, to push other opinions, to repeat over and over and over again messages that they are paid to repeat. The “journalists” in the employ of the media owners flash their shiny white teeth at the cameras and read verbatim from the pages that have been prepared for them.

Novak’s rejection of Nike’s offer of sponsorship turned one major advertiser against him, his refusal to accept the experimental RNA modifier turned another major advertiser against him, it all adds up to pressure on media owners to villify him and then for “journalists” to please their masters by attacking him and then of course the millions upon millions of sheep follow.

Final word, sheep simply do not realise they are sheep and they will go to their graves without ever realising it.

mat4 Says:


It seems that others did not think that my words were wise, since, although almost sixty, with a formal education far above what is usual, I am still “moderated”. I expressed what was normal when I grew up, and what is normal in most countries of the world. And it was normal because it was the truth — “opinion” is just another word for “ignorance”, and people can ignore reality up to a certain point, but then, the awaking is rude.

My English is awful when I am tired.

I wrote what I wrote because that’s the virtues (and not the “values”) embodied by Novak. That’s what he represents, and that’s the reason there is a silent war against him. I won’t mention money, although it is an important factor, but it is not relevant as much as it was any more.

Van Persie Says:

CF1, mat4,

Good posts. I will have to agree with CF1 here, as I also think that the “Western” in majority did not have a problem with Nole for being married, having kids and so on. Federer has that too!
The Western World does not identify with Nole’s traumas from his young childhood, as CF1 points out. His PR was not able to change that or perhaps they did not even try. And who cares? Nole is being true to himself. CF1 explained the reasons very well, imo. This is coming from a huge Nole fan!

I have a lot of German, English, French friends, but if I am talking to much to them about the hard times in the 80’s in Romania, they are interrested, but they are also getting bored at some point. They did not experience this and it is not their fault…they had their own traumas, different from mine.

Van Persie Says:


And I am sure, that Americans or Western who love him, they do it for the “Rocky” side of Nole.

Also yes, the Media was overreacting big time against him.
Who cares? He won! :D

Wog Boy Says:

What happened with Ben Rottenegg, haven’t heard from him in ages, he made his name (and money) rubbishing Nole?

skeezer Says:

Coco’s match w/Sabalenka was amazing. Sabalenka has the power, just need the head to match it. Coco was the little engine that could, and did. Great women’s final!

Incy _Wincy _ Spider Says:

I never had any issues with Novak not getting vaccinated, my hubby and I both did, we still got covid twice, he had a stroke, nor do I care if he had his kids out of wedlock, he’s happily married with two lovely children, it’s the other crap I don’t like, people making judgements on sexualities, genders, race etc, I’m viking ancestry, my hubby is east European, I’ve Anglo saxons in my family, my sister is married to someone from Celtic ancestry, my great niece has come out as none binary, one of our good friends has become transgender, another two male friends have just got married, MC would have a field day reading this, good luck to Novak hope he wins 25 at the AO

mat4 Says:

A lot of scientific knowledge is hidden for ideological motives. An example: whenever a minority who refuses to be assimilated (they don’t allow their daughters to marry men from the majority) grows to 20% of the overall population, there is a civil war. 4000 years of history to prove it. No exception. Then: any state where the birth rate is 1.4 children per women is a failed state, and society with a birth rate of 1.1 child per women is a failed society.

Now, you can make conclusions yourselves.

My point, in previous posts, was the following: what bothered the woke media about Novak was that he was proud to be normal, an alpha male among pussies. And yes, I agree with CF1 and zed, that’s also the reason he has so many fans.

Then, there are other things. Germanic societies are deeply racist. This has long been made clear in sociology and demography — this is not an opinion! E.g., instead of fighting racism, Americans replace one racism by another. British racism is, otoh, closely linked to xenophobia. This xenophobia is evident even against the French, but is without boundaries against Slavic peoples. That was one of the causes of Novak’s problems with the media. Novak was utterly right when he said that his status would have been completely different if he had not been a Serb.

Also: racism, xenophobia, hate against anybody who is different are all linked. A surrogate was the anti-vaxxer hysteria in Australia. Different sides of the same mentality, just like, as an example, some conception of free will, “chosen ones” in protestantism (which is mainly a German(ic) religion).

Incy _Wincy _ Spider Says:

It’s getting a bit heavy and political for me, all I was saying is, I just believe as long your not hurting anyone, then you should be left alone to lead your life the way you choose, I respect everyone’s opinion, Novaks who I’ve nothing against, and defended many times, even MCs even if I don’t agree with it, and I understand fans of the same player agreeing with each other, it’s all yours

Wog Boy Says:

Then why did you post this:

“…transphobic, racist, homophobic, horrible woman like her….”

Typical for woke-leftist, throw as much mud as you can something will stick, even everything is baseless, most ridiculous one is MC being racist, just proves that you know nothing about MC, only what MSM wrote in the last couple of years and the only reason was that she was actively campaigning against same sex marriage few years back during referendum.

I challenge any sane person to compare the lives of Marina, BJK and MC and to tell which one has lived life based on proper values and which one out of three would you recomend to your daughter as an example of truly fulfilling life?

Wog Boy Says:

* Martina

chrisford1 Says:

Read one way, WB it could be read that you prefer Martina as a daughter recommendation for a example of a fulfilling life.

I have some sympathies for Martina, born that way, escaping to the West and having a much better life as a tennis star and a fairly nice person off court.
But I didn’t like the victimhood narrative she got into of how tough it was – nor her and BJK the gay icon – trashing Court for sincere deeply held religious beliefs she lacks the power to impose on anyone anytime, all her life in Australia. Navratilova and King wanted her blackballed and dishonored from the annals of greats, name removed from places honoring her work.
Then the trans fascists came along and got enraged at the two old gay women for their remarks on trans women in tennis and just dogged them and were demanding their “cancellation” and dishonoring in tennis. It was such a sweet schadenfreude moment.

chrisford1 Says:

Was Martina the answer to your own question, BW?

Of course we know you better, but your two comments could be structured to read that way.

Wog Boy Says:


Sorry for the late response, I was in the plane from Vienna to Belgrade, no the answer wasn’t Martina, I spelled her name wrongly (Marina) and I corrected it to Martina but it can be misleading as you noticed.

The answer when it come to my two daughters would be MC.

Incy _Wincy _ Spider Says:

The other two

SG1 Says:

I find it interesting to read the different view points regarding Djokovic. He is a particularly polarizing figure in tennis. Perhaps the most polarizing player in a time of excessive polarization, political and otherwise.

His tennis achievements are beyond reproach. He built his reputation beating Federer, Nadal and now he is more than competitive against Alcaraz, a man 16 years younger than him. He is the GOAT and there’s no two ways about it.

While I understand Novak’s position on COVID vaccination, I find it a strange “hill to die on”. He deserves neither admiration or condemnation for his position. He is an adult who made a decision based on his beliefs and he accepted the consequences of his decisions. Of course, he has the wealth and power to do that kind of thing with little impact to his life.

I don’t know a lot about Novak’s charitable work but I’m sure it’s considerable. This being said, he could have chosen a “hill to die on” that made the world a better place rather than one that furthers his personal beliefs. Much like Tiger Woods, I think Novak is another GOAT who has squandered his power when it could have been used to fight more globally pressing issues . Other athletes like Muhammad Ali, Martina Navratilova, Kareem Abdul Jabbar etc used their iconic status to try and drive change. Arguing about COVID vaccines doesn’t do his reputation any favours. Particularly when almost 8M people have died from it. It’s just one of those things that in my mind, makes him less likeable than Federer and Rafa.

mat4 Says:


Now that more and more data surfaces about the epidemics (I mean here scientific, medical journals — no collective immunity, harmful masks, dangerous, even deadly vaccines causing leukemia, heart attacks, loss of fertility, autism, etc.), it becomes clear that Novak’s fight was much more important than we think. Of course, people in countries with severe censorship don’t know about the epidemics what is already well known in free countries. (BTW, all of this is easy to check through official data.)

Anyway, the moment a known personality is not sanctioned for his/her opinions, it means that these opinions are mainstream and serve a purpose. I wrote above that all the fight for marginal groups is not a real fight. Migrants destroy fees and salaries, insecurity help controlling the population and preparing a civil war in case of social unrest, while the other societal movements, instead of really helping marginal groups (who already had the same rights as others) have only one aim — to legalize pedophilia. Every year, 120k children disappear in the US. Last month, a traffic of young children (in pieces or/and alive) from Ukraine has been stopped in Bulgaria. All the “woke” movements help avoiding a fight for better salaries, better health, better food for the working class/middle class.

And one cannot put in the same bag Martina, Ali and Jabbar: Martina was forcing open doors. Just like BJK, she’s a fake. Ali went three years in prison for his beliefs.

About Novak charitable work: he gave several millions from his own pocket during the epidemics alone, for Serbia, Italy and Spain (and recently again, after the inundations in Mallorca). It was cynical that the man who gave 1 million euros for medications and respirators for Italy was banned from playing Rome.

Novak choose the good hill for a stand. But one needs to really dig a bit to understand why it was the real one.

SG1 Says:

Novak Djokovic does not possess the technical acumen to know how effective vaccines are or aren’t so his position is based on personal beliefs. It’s likely that the communist history of his country led him to have a general mistrust of government information.

As for side effects of vaccines, masks etc, it’s only normal that a mass inoculation will result in some having an unexpected (and even tragic) reaction.

Many people fall into the trap of believing the absolute solution fallacy. If a solution isn’t perfect, it’s not worth doing which is neither realistic or practical. The Vaccines saved millions of lives. They may not be perfect. They may even be flawed but they likely prevented a much larger global catastrophe. It’s easy to find reasons why something is wrong. Finding practical solutions that can be implemented requires a more nuanced view.

skeezer Says:

^This 👏

SG1 Says:

Hey Skeezer… been a while. Hope all is well.

skeezer Says:

Hi SG1, all good here. Hope all is well with you as well.

chrisford1 Says:

Earlier there was discussion on why Djokovic struggles with popularity, and I gave some “warts” that come with Novak’s great feats as a player and role model. I was going to add something simple and omitted it.
But 1st, Novak has barriers because like so many people of high intelligence, he falls into quackery, or strange ideas and beliefs at times. PR people say odd beliefs or eccentricities that may be negative in more people’s eyes than endearing should be out of public view. Not Novak. And that fed into his Covid vax backlash, but it hurt his marketability before even that.

The simple reason that Novak struggles being accepted as the good guy is that he has a classic bad guys face and villainous “commie” accent.
Dark hair and beard, long narrow face with close-set predator’s eyes. Put a top hat on him, give him a black handlebar moustache and he is Hollywood’s idea of Snidley Whiplash. Or a Soviet Gulag guard with Ak-47 strapped to his chest “Show me the papers. Da?”
In a shallow world, appearances and meshing in with the dominant cultural group impacting you is center focus. Appearances beat reality in marketability, and being aligned vs. off-tangeant, as well.

At least that’s my theory. Laughable or not, I’ll stick with it!!!

Wog Boy Says:

“Nadal’s sour grapes”, what do you think?


Alison hodge Says:

Sour grapes true,he should give Novak the credit he deserves, but he’s a great champion, his ego is bruised, as a fan I never expect my favourite to be happy about losing, as the saying goes show me a good loser and I’ll show you a loser

mat4 Says:

@Wog: There is a lot of discussion on X about it among Nole fans, but we should let it go. Twitter is a hater’s place, where people are for some reason excited all the time. Nadal said what he said, there is nothing new there, and it matters little.

@CF1: There is a cultural divide, here. While people in Eastern Europe know a lot about Western Europe (although the latest changes are not really assimilated), Westerners know almost nothing about this other world. I will not mention here Asia or Africa. The things Novak says or does are absolutely in the normal range where he is from, except when he was under the influence of this Spanish guru or whatever he is.

Otoh, I absolutely agree about the look. Being handsome/pretty is a must in media.

Wog Boy Says:

This just confirms what you said:

“It’s likely that the communist history of his country led him to have a general mistrust of government information.”

Obviously doesn’t have a clue what was political system in Yugoslavia and that former Yugoslavia didn’t have anything to do with other communist countries in Eastern Europe, wasn’t the member of Warsaw pact nor had one single foreign soldier on its soil…until NATO came in 1999. Yugoslavia was pursuing their own political system (more socialist than communist), was very liberal, you were able to run small private businesses, people had passports and were free to leave the country at will for the difference of other Eastern European countries, though it was one party system.

Furthermore, Novak was born in 1987, the system collapsed in 1990 so he grew up in multiparty system, couldn’t be affected by “communist history of his country”, and to clear, Yugoslavia collapsed, for the difference of Warsaw block” not because of political system, but ethnic and religious differences fuelled by the “Western democratic countries” there is no need to name them.

When I came to live in western country I was shocked how misinformed they are and easily accepted everything served through MSM, but North Americans take GOAT title in being misinformed, they just blindly believe in what their government serves them.

Wog Boy Says:

As for Rafa, I disagree, he should be called out for this, at least Federer kept quiet and dignified.

But Rafa showed his true face at AO 2022, so this doesn’t surprise me, this is coming from someone who considered Rafa his secon favourite until last year AO.

mat4 Says:

@Wog: Yugoslavia was a beautiful country, with very educated people, and very beautiful women. What happened in the nineties was the general repetition for what will happen to Europe, so I advise to learn its history.

People were very free in Yugoslavia, despite it being a communist country, and until 1999 and the bombing to plunder Serbia, Serbia was a true democracy. Serbs and Milosevic — who was cleared at the Hague, and charges against him were rejected, btw — did not understand that since Athens, every “democracy” is in fact an “oligarchy”. The rich rule, and the state is here to steal from the poor to give to the rich. Even a traitor like Djindjic tried, at the beginning, to create a “capitalism for the people”. Until his masters ordered otherwise.

About Rafa: we knew for a long time that he hated Novak. Since 2011 probably. Time and time again he said it in a way or another. But then, Vasya Smyslov said once that there was one title he could never lose: the title of ex-champion. So, Rafa should be satisfied with his title of ex-goat, COVID goat, goat “for one year” (thinking about Bowie). It’s “not too bad”, and he won’t never lose it.

SG1 Says:

WogTwit…Tito was a communist and Novak’s parents grew up in that system. While I agree that Tito was less oppressive than other Eastern European communist leaders, communism is still communism and it was destined to fail.

Are you saying that Novak’s parents, having lived in Communist Yugoslavia, had no influence on their kid? Are you f&@$&ng serious or just stupid.

Wog Boy Says:

Why so agro SG1?!

Calling me names doesn’t make your arguments any better, on the contrary. Since you used word stupid I’ll feel free to use it myself. The testimony of stupidity and ignorance is following statement:

“Are you saying that Novak’s parents, having lived in Communist Yugoslavia, had no influence on their kid?”

I’ll leave it to hang here, education and knowledge is very serious thing, it’s not enough to ask Mr Google about the things you know nothing about and I am not here to educate you.

Reading your post I can’t help it but thinking about “Blast from the Past“ movie, have a nice day.

SG1 Says:

WogTwit…you seem to know everything about people who disagree with you. You don’t attack my arguments intelligently. You extract and excerpt and attack my position by trying to engage others (like Mat4) so if the shoe fits I’m going to call you stupid. Your a trolling, bullying internet thug.

My parents and my grandparents immigrated to the West from the communist east block so I know all about how wonderful communism is. If you’re going to try and tell me that Novak’s parents lived in utopian Yugoslavian wonder world, it’s you that is once again clueless. Yugoslavia was run by a “cult of personality”. He didn’t build anything that lasted. His lies and propaganda were propped up by western money. When Tito died, the fake society he built went to hell in a hand basket. In other words, Yugoslavia was built on lies like all other communist states.

My family also happens to know people who came from communist Yugoslavia and it was still a very communist state

Van Persie Says:


I do not think that Yugoslavia did not survive, because it was communist(I will not go into details) … and I agree with mat4 and WB, the people in Yugoslavia had so much freedom. Romanians regarded them with respect and with envy! The system was more socialist then communist.

I also like mat4’s remarque about the athenian democracy. Good one😉. We speak a lot about the “greek democracy”, which was an utopy,and we forget that they had slaves at the same time😂. Tells a lot about this.

Regarding Nole, I love him he won, he is the GOAT. Who cares what Rafa thinks? 🙄

Van Persie Says:


Please do not tell me, that the Austro-Hungarian empire was also distroyed, as it was communist… The eastern European block was never meant to be stron and united. Its existence did not serve the West too much, as they needed to conrtrol the East. There is a lot history, which you should learn. It is not that simple.

Van Persie Says:

I urge you to read “The geographical pivot of history” written by Halford John Mackinder (Brit). It would help you to understand a bit the geopolitics.


mat4 Says:

I once again recommend learning Yugoslavian history thoroughly. Its path, and its fate was way different from other countries were Communists ruled. I also recommend learning the history of WWII — it is key to understand what is happening now in Europe, and what could happen soon.

mat4 Says:

@Van Persie:

Mackinder summarized well the strategy of seafaring nations against land based nations. It is important to know his ideas/analyses to understand British and American politics, but also the importance of OBOR for China, or Crimea for Russia, or the disposition of American military bases through the world.

For those who don’t have enough time, Brian Blouet and alii give a good synopsis of Mackinder’s ideas. Easy to find.

Van Persie Says:


Yep, he did summarize it good. Imagine now, what would have meant for them a good relation between EU and Russia, EU taking the gas from Russia, andE U having th eproduction in China. Explains it all, whem you are havin a look at that map.

Wog Boy Says:

mat4 and VP, I promised to myself I won’t be posting this afternoon but I am known for breaking my promises, I won’t be commenting on Canadian with “Eastern European “ background, his posts speak for themselves.

First ladies, VP, as our neighbour from across the Danube I don’t question your knowledge, full stop.

mat4, you mentioned before beautiful Yugoslav women, they are still beautiful regardless, I am just sitting now with “Lav pivo” directly opposite Hotel Metropol in “Bulevar Kralja Aleksandra” and perving, I know it’s a sin but I love it, beautiful woman are passing by me (I know you know where I am)😉👍

SGreen Says:

Hats off to Rafa. As a person, I don’t think he loses to Djokovic, nor does Djokovic to Rafa. Failure does not come often in their way. Beautiful longest rivalry between them and so much respect for each other. On a side note, it could look better if Djokovic wises up and tones down his obsession with history. Do it for fun while deriving all the motivation from the idea of fun. Now one can freeze tennis history regardless of what you do, even if you were an almighty God, but you sure can make a mark on it and you can feel you did more than your part.
Back to Rafa:
“I believe that numbers are numbers and statistics are statistics. In that sense, I think he [Djokovic] has better numbers than mine and that is indisputable,” Nadal said in an interview with AS published Wednesday.
“This is the truth. The rest are tastes, inspiration, sensations that one or the other may transmit to you, that you may like one or the other more,” he added. “I think that with respect to titles, Djokovic is the best in history and there is nothing to discuss about that.”
Hats off to the champs. It is the court that counts, and whatever that is made in the court lives on. The court makes history and outlives its time.


SGreen Says:

Now one can freeze tennis history= no one can freeze tennis history

Alison hodge Says:

Nice post, Novak is the greatest, Rafa acknowledged that, what Rafa achieved is pretty amazing too, he has nothing to feel down about….

chrisford1 Says:

SGreen- Agree with your post except ” It is the court that counts.”

it’s a business Sports are entertainment. entertainment has value, certain teams and players get rewarded more – and it’s not exactly correlated to statistics but personalities and markets. And what “Star System” the pro sport wishes to promote. One their media paymasters and corporate league sponsors have to assent to over the long haul to keep the money flowing.

It’s more than just stats. In any sport. It is what the fans like or what the fans have been manipulated to like – that makes for great success for some, a decent living, or a dismal living or truncated career as a pro.

Then there is the 50 or so years of life after active tennis that helps determine what the books say of the athletes life and their lifetime reputation. Boris Becker bankrupt and in a prison cell, reasons why no tennis infrastructure is named after Bill Tilden, Ivan Lendl..or Navatilova

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