ramblings of an aimless mind

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Archive for July 2007


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Earlier this year, I did not blog after the French open final between Federer and Nadal as I would have had to title the post “Federer bites the dust II”. Yet again, the Spaniard denied Federer the crown and I will have to be rooting for him once again next year…

 This years wimbledon final though was something I will really treasure. Yet again it was a Federer vs. Nadal final and there were “firsts” to be achieved by both players, with Nadal gunning for his first wimbledon and Federer going for being the first since Borg to get 5 wimbledons in a row. Now that was interesting match stuff and though I started out not specifically favouring any single player(since I could not make up my mind) somewhere down the line I landed in the Federer camp.

 The match was truly one of the classics I have ever watched and the only other one that equals it was an Edberg vs. Chang US open semi final in the 1992. The best quality of both these matches was that neither player had an advantage over the other for a majority of the 5 sets, thus keeping the viewers guessing all the time.

In fact, in this years final, Federer seemed to be the weaker player for the first four sets, as Nadal won his two sets far more easily than Federer who had to struggle with tie breakers. The fourth set was downright ugly for a Federer supported like me, as Nadal broke twice and Federer seemed to lose his cool (not a frequent occurence) over a really bad Hawk Eye line call.

In the fifth and final set the two seemed to be locked in a tussle with no one getting the upper hand…until Nadal went up 15-40 on Federer’s serve. Federer hadnt broken Nadal for quite a while and at this point I for one had started to lose hope.

But then I guess it is not for going down so easily that Federer has many a tennis follower branding him as one of the greatest ever. The next 4-5 games showed the true mettle of the guy, as he came back from 15-40 down twice in that set to hold, then break Nadals serve and follow the break with a super efficient service game (serving 3 aces and 1 serve with Nadal only managed to touch) to take an unassailable lead. After that, everyone seemed to know the outcome of the match and the final overhead smash from the net seemed pretty much like a formality…

I guess since they first started out and even more especially today, sport is as much a mental test as a physical one. To find oneself in a stadium filled with probably 20000 people, facing an able opponent, finding the game slipping from ones hands and yet to have the faith/courage/determination/whatever to claw back and produce a stellar performance to steal the day shows immense mental strength which only the truly great possess…

 All that said and done, I agree with everone else (including Federer) that Nadal is rapidly closing the gap on this guy and is definitely a player to watch in the future. I just hope this great rivalry provides us with many more good tennis clashes!

Written by clueso

July 22, 2007 at 8:08 pm

Posted in Uncategorized