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Federer matches yet another Sampras record @ Stockholm.

Posted by tennisplanet on October 24, 2010

Incidentally Sampras also lost an exhibition match today to Greg Rusedski who mocked him big time at the last Slam Sampras won. Sampras reportedly came home to an empty home. His entire family and pet had already moved to safer land. They did however leave a blow up doll of someone bald and short.

Federer, on the other hand, has finally managed to squeeze in another title for the season, pulling next to Sampras as fourth on the all-time title list. Psychologically, this latest win should appear to suggest that the tide is turning for Federer. Past Wimbledon, he has now won a Masters event, reclaimed the No. 2 rank and has reached another milestone. Not too shabby given where the train was headed just few short months ago.

Of course, no one in the right mind can make too much of it all. With Basel next – place where he was born and was a ball boy – with home crowd advantage, it can only get better, unless Djokovic refuses the bribe Soderling fell for here.

“You never know when it’s your last one. That’s why you want to savor every tournament victory.” Is that some kind of reality setting in deep enough to receive such articulation – something completely denied in the past? The run he has been on this season, particularly in the light of the last seven years, WILL evoke the thought with much more authenticity than any casual reference to it as a matter of fact.

Next title stop is 77 owned by McEnroe – that’s 13 titles away. Unless Federer starts visiting more 250 events hosted by a planted man from now on, that number is not getting eclipsed at current rate of three titles per season. I remember hearing of some cricket fast bowlers wanting to reach a record by going after the tail end line up of their opposing team. Same concept. After all, who talks about the quality at this platform. It’s all quantity, isn’t it? For rock people, Connors heads the list with 109.

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17 Responses to “Federer matches yet another Sampras record @ Stockholm.”

  1. chieko said

    😀

  2. overcaffeinated said

    Q. How long it would be that RF would AGAIN match one of TP’s riduculous expectations, before TP trashed it?
    A. Approx 12-13 hours.

    🙂

    • Sol said

      It’s pretty incredible isn’t it? Especially since we never see such posts from TP (and others) when, say, the no. 1 plays a tournament like Bangkok (also an ATP 250) and actually LOSES to the world no. 53 (Garcia Lopez) after having played no.185 and no.83.
      Why is it that we can continually burry Fed and say he’s over, but the focus is still more on him than on everyone else, especially the current world no. 1. I will never get it.
      He won Stockholm. It’s not a big deal and noone is making it sound like anything but just a good win. But he is playing well, like it or not.
      Since Wimby, he won 2 titles, made the USO semis and another final (Shanghai) at all the tournaments he entered. Not too bad for an old geezer, wouldn’t you say?

      • chipnputt said

        Ya, Roger is playing much better then he was during the summer. Annacone has been good for him as he’s looking to move forward. While he hasn’t become a threat at the net just yet, the moving forward bit is helping put more weight behind his shots. Roger has re-discovered the pop his shots used to always have (and what really made him TMF). The WTF and 2011 will be very interesting. While Roger is clearly behind Rafa right now, but he is playing better and he looks very determined.

        Incidentally, I was surprised to hear Mayer say “hope you become No.1 again”. Very very rare for sportsmen to state a preference for one colleague over another. For example, you’ll get plenty of “good luck for the finals”, but rarely, “hope you win tomorrow”.

      • Jenny said

        That was a surprising statement from Mayer. Although I do remember Roger ‘nominating’ Rafa for the top spot some years ago. I agree about Annacone’s influence, but why didn’t he employ more of those tactics when coached by Tony Roche who was also a well known net player.

      • chipnputt said

        He didn’t need to, Jenny. Remember Roger fired Roche in 2007 before the French. Those days he could win pretty much playing from anywhere. The only thing he struggled with was the top spin to his backhand on a slow surface and coming to the net wouldn’t fix it. Incidentally, IMO, it’s not so much coming to the net, but moving forward as he hits the ball that has fixed Roger’s timing and is giving his shots the zip of old.

      • Jenny said

        Agreed, Chip. As I recall, and imho, Roger initially employed Tony because he was a lefty, an experienced, respected coach, and had successful results on clay, [singles winner 1 and 5 times runner up FO]. It was, imo, an attempt to beat the King of Clay at the French more than anything.

      • chipnputt said

        You’re right Jenny. Separately, I wonder if pure serve and volley is pretty much dead until they change something. With modern rackets and, more importantly, modern strings, and the courts being slowed down pretty much everywhere, coming to the net, except when the point is close to 80% won, is almost harakiri.

      • banti said

        ” the moving forward bit is helping put more weight behind his shots.”

        Maybe if he gains some muscle mass instead of slowly emaciating he could avoid this altogether. Next step should be get rid of that swiss trainer of his.

      • Jenny said

        Fed has always been lithe and wiry, he’s comfortable in his skin. I do agree though, Banti, sometimes he looks a little too lean, especially when he got sick. I remember one of our comms [an ex pro] saying once, you don’t need muscle to win tennis matches, by that I think he meant obvious muscle bulk. As we know, Rafa went through that stage, imo he got too heavy at the time which I’m sure didn’t do his knees any favours. Roger will stick with Pagannini, bet ya, successful players rarely change their fitness trainers.

  3. mircea said

    For Fed fans, yesterday was a happy one. So no need to share joy with TP.

  4. grendel said

    Chipnputt

    Somebody recently said that the Nadal team took a decision to home in on Federer’s backhand with the view to neutralising it and thus effectively neutralising Fed’s entire game. It’s not that it was perceived as being weak (so this reasoning went), just weaker than the forehand. The idea was that by relentlessly targetting the bh it would eventually breakdown – more or less according to the same logic that if you were to lift a weight over and again with the same arm, what starts off as easy eventually becomes borderline impossible. What do you think of this notion?

    Incidentally, when Nadal beat Monfils in that recent final, I noticed he was targetting Monfils’ bh – not surprising, I suppose, considering how dangerous is the Monfils forehand. However, Monfils has of course a double-handed bh, supposedly immune to the high kicking ball. It looked anything but immune, I must say, on that particular day.

    • chipnputt said

      Ya, pretty basic strategy. Either you play to your strength or to your opponent’s weakness. The part that Nadal’s camp had probably not expected is how completely Federer cooperated with them. Federer changed nothing until 2009 (when he brought out the drop shot), stubbornly believing that he could take on Nadal’s forehand with his backhand. It probably took the thrashing in the 08 FO and the subsequent defeats at Wimbledon and the AO to make him seriously think about changing plans.

      Btw, going to Federer’ backhand has always been a common strategy, largely because the forehand is probably one of the greatest weapons the game has ever seen. Nadal did it successfully, but every player out there has tried it. If you want to see a good example of this strategy not working, check out the 07 AO semi between Federer and Roddick. Roddick, coached by Connors, kept hitting to Federer’s backhand and coming in. Fed won 4, 0, and 2.

      • Barbara said

        The match to remember(but not for Roddick fans)

      • grendel said

        The point this person was making (rightly or wrongly) was not that Fed’s bh was weak, on the contrary, it was very strong, even if not as strong as the fh. But that by homing in on it in relentless fashion, fatigue would (in due course)be induced, and then the mistakes, or relatively feeble responses, would follow. I remember thinking this sounded quite good, even plausible, but wasn’t sure if it was right. i.e. was it really fatigue, or a genuine weakness from the getgo.

      • chipnputt said

        Ah; no answer to that one though I haven’t see any writer say Fed lost to Nadal because of muscle fatigue. I think the above-shoulder ball on the backhand is a difficult shot for any guy with a one-handed backhand. So one could argue it was a genuine weakness.

  5. mircea said

    I think that a smarter and most certainly less stubborn Federer would have beaten Nadal time and time again at least on three big occasions. Unfortunately, Federer is too proud to admit weaknesses and simply tried to outdo Nadal at what Nadal does best: base-line bashing. The more time goes by, the more one senses that Federer should have changed tactics eons ago, played smarter and attacked Nadal’s game as much as possible, varying his own game. Born under the sign of Leo, the Fed’s one stubborn customer and a bit too proud to admit the need to adapt. He might have learned his lesson in time.

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