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DC backlash for Federer part of ‘when it rains it pours’ script?

Posted by tennisplanet on September 22, 2010

Would the Swiss authorities have done the same if Federer was currently at the peak of his career? Their track record says no, given that they had more than one opportunity to vent in the past. So is this as simple as the rising and the setting sun theory? Could there be any other conclusion?

What’s the immediate impact of this around the league? Rod Laver has offered his services for the next DC tie. What’s her name, Athea Robinson is next. I mean if Federer, of all the freaking people, can be dragged through the mud, lesser lights currently on hospital beds have to be lining up right about now to avoid humiliation.

This is no freaking secret. If players can be guaranteed that their image will not take a hit, their patriotism not questioned and more importantly that they will not lose any endorsement deals – NO ONE will EVER opt for Davis Cup freaking matches.

Sure there are some enthusiasts but the event will not progress past the first five minutes with them – on sheer numbers. If you have ever been to one of these matches live, you know how brutally the visiting team is treated by the fans. It’s even encouraged further demoralizing the spirit these games profess to promote.

Isn’t this the time for the country to support the player that has brought so much to the sport AND the country? After all, he isn’t lighting it up these days. Maybe the authorities should have even offered for Federer to skip considering what’s on his plate today. Or ‘kicking the dog when he is down’ part is somehow going to achieve something here?

Under normal conditions this would be just a minor annoyance for Federer. But coming on the heels of a season that hasn’t gone his way, a ‘two match points’ loss at a Slam, Nadal becoming larger by the minute, Anaconda ‘straying’ from his intended job description, Mirka channeling her attention more towards the twins, Djokovic not caring to rush for the handshake at the net, Wawrinka helping Nadal win his career Slam…………. this could begin to ‘pour’ – soon.


22 Responses to “DC backlash for Federer part of ‘when it rains it pours’ script?”

  1. M said

    “Could there be any other conclusion?”


    DC management could have been trying to say “Roger, we need you and want to have you with us to maximize our chances for victory” — and just didn’t pick the optimal way to say it.

    “Isn’t this the time for the country to support the player that has brought so much to the sport AND the country?”


    Perhaps something like “We would like our countryman who revolutionized the sport, has carried our flag, and is half of the doubles team that brought Olympic gold honor to our country, to join us in the Swiss team’s next march to DC victory” might have been a better way to put it.

    • Arjun said

      “We would like our countryman who revolutionized the sport, has carried our flag, and is half of the doubles team that brought Olympic gold honor to our country, to join us in the Swiss team’s next march to DC victory”

      1. Thanks to this loss, they won’t be marching to victory anytime soon – They aren’t in the world group anymore
      2. How has Federer revolutionised the sport? (yes, this is a completely serious question)

      • M said

        Arjun, I just have time for a quick response to your last question.
        Also, it’s qualitative, not quantitative, which my intuition tells me may not satisfy you, but
        a) it’s all I have time for right now, and
        b) I’m quite sure you can Google through this site — and the web, for that matter — for the quantitative stats to buttress any qualitative statement I might make here.

        For three years (2006-08), our current World Number One had to adapt his grass game in order to beat Roger.
        To even begin to challenge either Roger or Rafa, all other current players in the game have been forced to adapt their own, to begin to counter their level of play and try to be competitive.

        It’s as simple as that, it seems to me.

      • Growltiger said


        I’ve learned a few things in the last few months.

        1. If you disparage an Apple Computer, you will be attacked by the fanatics who own them and are convinced they are a tiny little god in a box.

        2. If you say anything but positive things on TP about Roger Federer being the GOAT, you will be (politely but firmly) set straight.

      • Arjun said

        “For three years (2006-08), our current World Number One had to adapt his grass game in order to beat Roger.
        To even begin to challenge either Roger or Rafa, all other current players in the game have been forced to adapt their own, to begin to counter their level of play and try to be competitive.”

        I mostly agree with this. However, there’s nothing in it that seems ‘revolutionary’?

      • sperry said

        Growltiger: Blasphemy, I say unto you!! Mac’s are MUCH better than little gods in a box. RE: Roger’s postion as GOAT. I happen to think he is, now. But I have gently suggested several times that if Rafa’s knees hold up, it’s only a matter of time until that changes. No flax yet.

      • M said

        @ Arjun – I’m not going to debate with you about how to define words differently.

        @ GT – nobody said all that. Are you exaggerating for effect?
        If you’ve read my comments here at all over the past however many months (years? eek!), you know I don’t believe in the endless GOAT debate.
        I believe different players are great at different things.
        But, then, generally, there is this duty to read, you see.

      • Arjun said


        I’m not defining the word how I see fit, nor am I asking you to define it. Let’s stick to the dictionary definition.

        Nothing you mentioned is revolutionary

    • chipnputt said

      Arjun.. you are right that Federer did not revolutionize the game. Technology did that. First came the change in racket head size and the composition of the frame in the mid-70s. More recently it’s been the the Luxilon strings that allow players to put the kind of revolutions on a ball that Laver, Borg and Sampras simply could not have done. Further, to appeal to commercial interests, various surfaces have been dramatically slowed down –notably Wimbledon post 2001 (Ivanovic def Rafter in the final but you may also recall a fourth round encounter between R. Federer and P. Sampras) tore up their courts and made the grass much much slower (in 02 Hewiit def. Nalbandian in the final — you will appreciate how different their playing style was from the previous years finalists). Since then the surface has become slower and slower so that today it almost resembles clay. Also, the Australian Open replaced their Rebound Ace material with the much slower Plexicushion in 2009. These developments are what changed (revolutionized) the game and also changed the kind of player who could win these tournaments.

      So, while Federer may not have “revolutionized” the sport, semantics aside, his contribution to tennis is still immense. Roger is at least 3 years past his peak and yet even in his annus horribilis, he has had a better year than any current player has ever had, bar Rafa this year and in 2008. But do you remember Federer’s peak? Here are two articles to remind you — one about his tennis and the other about the person. Both are in very respectable publications and written by very respectable (i.e. neutral) journalists. Federer has brought out unprecedented positive emotions in very neutral observers by the sheer beauty of his game. Plus his stats are not too shabby either — last time I checked, 16 was still the high water mark by some distance. It may be surpassed, it may not. If it is, as fans we will be all be even more privileged for we would have seen a player who was even greater than Federer. But that is at least a McEnroe career (7 majors) away. For now, though, enjoy these articles:

      • Arjun said

        “his contribution to tennis is still immense”

        Completely agree. I’m not arguing this at all (who would?)

        I also agree that new racquets and strings have changed the sport. The game is very different from the time of Sampras (let alone Laver), and in 10 years, I’m sure it’ll be very different from today’s.

        And so, while I understand all the nice adjectives and praise heaped on Fed, I just get a bit tired of the over-over-hyping sometimes. I’d be very surprised if a player can ever revolutionise the sport – I suppose he’d need to invent a new shot that catches on or something

      • D.S.G. said

        Like the body serve?

  2. wuiches said

    If they had defeated Kazakhstan then there won’t be no words about Rodge.

    But a 5-0 defeat against a very poor country definitely unleashed their anger. Hard to say if with this result and Roger winning the US they would’ve reacted in a different way.

    • Growltiger said

      Wawrinka had a hard US Open and looked exhausted. Federer had just as hard a US Open. I don’t know what happened to Churdinelli. What if Fed had appeared on DC and lost secondary to exhaustion (als Wawrinka)? He’d have gotten even more grief.

      Of the top five, only Djokovic played and he and the No 3 doubles player in the world (Zemenick sp) LOST. He pulled out his singles against Berdych and saved the Serbs from going down 3-1.

      The fault isn’t in the players, it’s in DC, played one week after the US Open; this year FOUR DAYS after the finals.
      BAD timing.

      DC should either be played every two years and made into a tournament like a Slam (two weeks) or turned over to amateurs only. Points comparable to the points in a slam should be given for each match won by the player. Money to the top players is probably not as important as points. As reported in Bleacher Report, Djokovic probably will lose a lot of points this fall because he’ll be concentrating on winning Davis Cup for Serbia in Dec and thus saving himself. He shouldn’t be punished for playing for his country. Same with Monfils, Tsonga and the rest of the French team.

  3. O said

    There shouldn’t be any fuss, period. Federer represent the Swiss everyday brilliantly, with or without DC.

    • ClayBuster said


      And why the thought that IF Roger had played, they’d have won? They lost 0-5, fergodssakes. No guarantee whatsoever that Roger would have won both his singles matches, as well as the doubles. It’s no longer 2006!!!

      Swiss media should be ashamed of themselves, bashing their brilliant son because of this decision not to play the DC.

    • Bonnie said

      Absoluley agree O. Well said.!

  4. DMK said

    Roger has played quite a few times for Davis Cup — can someone look that up? Now he’s easing back a bit on his schedule due to his family and personal reasons, his other obligations. Was he not exhauseted, too, from the North American tour? Didn’t he play Toronto, Cincy and the US Open? I’m sure that he expected the usual negative comments, but does he have to be made out to be a traitor? Roger always gets harrassed no matter what he says and does. If he’s doing well, everyone says he’s vain and self absorbed — if he’s not winning every set, every match, every tournament, everyone wants to know when he’s going to retire. I don’t see how he can stand it. No wonder he disappears and takes a break part of the time — a person would need to!

    • Sol said

      Roger has played the DC every year since 1999. It’s the first time in 11 years that he’s decided not to play.
      From the frenzy this caused, you would think he hasn’t played a single DC match in years, huh?

      • Jenny said

        Exactly, Sol. There comes a time when players have to ease off, which includes regular DC participation, it’s the same with Roddick and other stalwarts, they shouldn’t be castigated because of it.

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