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Nishikori Ends Federer’s Miami Run

Nishikori Ends Federer’s Miami Run

Hey all, bit of a surprise loss here as Roger crashed out at the hands of Kei Nishikori 3-6 7-5 6-4 under the flood lights at Crandon Park.

I thought after strolling past Gasquet we’d be seeing another straight sets victory but it wasn’t to be. All comes down to a poor serving display from Fed coupled with solid baseline play from the Japanese Number 1 who came out the deserved winner.

Not a painful loss for the fans I don’t think as Roger looked out of it towards the end and appeared to be fighting tiredness, frustration and some lapses in confidence from the second set onwards. Wasn’t like Nishikori was ever going to be walkover but I thought he’d get it done on recent form. But anyway, if Fed was going to lose he may as well lose to my pre-tournament darkhorse :D

Quick Match Recap

Federer after Nishikori Loss

Roger started this one looking pretty sharp firing down two nice holds to lead 2-1. He could have broken in Nishikori in his opening service game having had 2 break points but failed to capitalise.

That didn’t matter though as he broke through to lead 3-1 before holding for 4-1. Then somewhat out of the blue Nishikori managed to be the first player to break the Swiss this tournament. That was only a minor blip though as Fed hit straight back to break again before reeling off some specatuclar shots to close out the set 6-3.

With a set in the bag it looked like another quick shift for Roger as he broke early to lead 2-1. Nishikori wasn’t planning on folding like Gasquet though and he broke straight back after some weak errors flew off the Wilson Wand.

Dropping serve for the second time didn’t unsettle Federer though. He came up with a string of perfectly constructed points to move up another break at 4-3 and put the finishing line in sight.

Again he failed to consolidate the break and in the blink of an eye Nishikori had put himself up 6-5 and then broke Roger to level up the match. It was a poor set to lose from Roger’s perspective as this is the ATP not the WTA. If you have 2 breaks in a set and you don’t win it then questions have to be asked. Nishikori wasn’t exactly setting the world alight but he just stuck to his task and took his chances when they came. That shouldn’t really be enough against Roger.

Forcing a decider firmly put momentum on Nishikori’s side and he began to serve much better. The first 9 games went with serve but Roger had to dig deep on several occasions to stay in touch. The lack of cheap points on serve and easy holds finally caught up with him at 4-5 when he slipped to 0-40. He fended off 2 of them with great plays but a second serve on the 3rd match point gave Nishikori a look in and he slapped a cross court backhand winner to seal the victory. Well deserved.

Match Stats

R. FedererK. Nishikori
Aces76
Double Faults35
1st Serve %53%66%
1st Serve Points Won33/47 (70%)46/71 (65%)
2nd Serve Points Won20/41 (49%)18/37 (49%)
Break Points Saved7/12 (58%)5/9 (56%)
Service Games Played1615
1st Return Points Won25/71 (35%)14/47 (30%)
2nd Return Points Won19/37 (51%)21/41 (51%)
Winners2925
Unforced Errors3942
Break Points Won4/9 (44%)5/12 (42%)
Return Games Played1516
Net Points Won10/16 (63%)5/10 (50%)
Total Service Points Won53/88 (60%)64/108 (59%)
Total Return Points Won44/108 (41%)35/88 (40%)
Total Points Won97/196 (49%)99/196 (51%)

Thoughts on the Match

Federer Nishikori Miami 2014

Losses are never ideal but just like the Djokovic defeat in Indian Wells I’m not too downbeat about this one. It was clearly a match he should have put to bed in the second set but for one reason or another he was unable to do that.

I’m just taking it on the chin because there’s no way he was beating Djokovic and Nadal back to back here for the title. At worst he’s getting a beatdown from either of them and at best he’s spending 6 hours on court having to try win 30 shot rallies to stand a chance of winning.

Although Roger made a decent start winning the first set the numbers he recorded weren’t that great. It was more about 2 or 3 bits of magic that won him it. After that he wasn’t really able to summon those on the big points and that allowed Nishikori back into the match. He was still hitting some great shots but his level was up and down like a yo-yo.

He might have been able to get away with that against a more erratic opponent or on a faster court but Nishikori is such an efficient and solid player. He makes it extremely difficult for his opponents, little goes wrong with his technique and he plays the percentages. If you’re off the boil he’s going to capitalise.

After dropping the second set I thought Fed went pretty flat and struggled from there on. Being up a break twice and failing to win it would have been demoralising. Looked like he was tired too but I think that was probably more out of frustration than out and out fatigue. It’s not easy to get a boost of adrenaline when you’re missing first serves galore and wondering where you’re next point is coming from. Clearly the match felt like a chore for Fed last night rather than a pleasure.

So reason for the loss? Not serving well, surface + conditions not helping him out and Nishikori being too solid. That all combined to throw him off his game and he never had a clear plan of what to do. Too much doubt in the mind hence the retreating on the returns and missing some routine shots.

Looked like a cold night in Miami too and his record in night matches over there has been pretty poor to say the least so it was really just one of those days. Not making excuses there that’s just how it is.

Fair play to Nishikori too, he didn’t show any signs of fatigue and he’s just a solid player. Probably going to factor in the clay season as he’s technically sound and moves great.

He also stuck to the plan of pounding Federer’s backhand with his 2 hander. The court slowness meant getting him out of position or hitting a clean winner was virtually impossible. Roger did an ok job of mixing it up but he just never really strung it together, the forehand could fire one shot but falter the next and he never had comfortable service holds to ride out the bad patches.

Anyway, Miami is done, it’s Davis Cup in about 2 weeks and then the long wait till Madrid. I think it’s been a very good start to the year and there is plenty more to come :) Let me know what you think of the loss in the comments.

Hey all, bit of a surprise loss here as Roger crashed out at the hands of Kei Nishikori 3-6 7-5 6-4 under the flood lights at Crandon Park. I thought after strolling past Gasquet we'd be seeing another straight sets victory but it wasn't to be. All comes down to a poor serving display from Fed coupled with solid baseline play from the Japanese Number 1 who came out the deserved winner. Not a painful loss for the fans I don't think as Roger looked out of it towards the end and appeared to be fighting tiredness, frustration and some…

Review Overview

Serving
Returning
Net Play
Winner to Unforced Error Ratio
Break Point Conversion

1st Serve missing in action

Summary : Looked sluggish in the third set, mentally up and down. 1st serve nowhere to be found. Not good enough to beat a talented and solid opponent.

User Rating: 1.79 ( 16 votes)
64

About Jonathan

Huge fan of Roger Federer - I'll pretty much try and watch all his matches from Grand Slam level right down to ATP 250. When I'm not watching or tweeting about tennis I play regularly myself and use this blog to share my thoughts on Fed and tennis in general.

282 comments

  1. Someday Ill get the first comment, wawrinka style :)

  2. Slowami comes to an end. As I said earlier I’m not too bothered about the loss and Roger has played a great 2/3 three weeks now and will most likely be ranked 4th come next week as I don’t think Berdych is winning the title (he will most likely he be bending over for Dull in the SFs if he beats Dolgo).

    So yes it’s been good, just too much Tennis for Roger in the end. Also I think Nishikori > Gulbis/Dimitrov (Well at least I personally prefer Nishikori over those guys)

  3. Agree with your post Jonathan! I was pretty pissed this morning when I watched the replay, but it quickly went out of my mind, unlike other defeats. Onwards to DC, gonna be fun seeing both the swiss guys! :D

    • It seems DC is now Stan’s only goal for the season and maybe that’s why he’s been flopping everywhere else :P
      Like you, I’m also looking forward to it, Roger should be well rested. Hopp Suisse!

  4. The one positive in this is that he is still ahead in H2H with Djokovic.

    • H2H don’t really matter so much for different generations. There careers started at very different times. I mean Rafter leads Federer 3-0 H2H, he retired at like 28. If he played till 33 a la Roger now, then Fed would easily be 6-3 or so ahead without a shadow of a doubt.

      If Fed had retired in 2010 when he was 28, he would have been 13-6 in the H2H vs Djoker :)

  5. Isnt Davis cup next week?
    Anyway, I always suffer With Federer losses but this one is really tough. I didnt watch it, but by reading the post i get an idea. Just seeing that he Had twice a break up and twice got counter-breaked leaves me shaking, seeing the ghosts of 2013 appear.well, i hope tus is just a temporaly thing, and that we see a renovated Federer making At least semis on both masters 1000 next month.

    Pd: if i do some sintax errors, sorry im spanish

  6. Well Roger himself doesn’t disagree with you Jonathan:
    http://www.asapsports.com/show_interview.php?id=97622
    This is QF after all not 2nd round loss so apart that awkward moment when I saw the score this morning and checked it several times to make sure my sleepy eyes weren’t playing me any tricks, I pretty much accepted wjay happened and as I said before I’m happy whatever the outcome as long as the title isn’t Spanish (for obvious reasons lol) or Czech (for ranking reasons).
    :-) :-) :-)

  7. Nice post Jonathan. Agree with it all. But think some people are too hard on him. Take a look at the facts. Fed had not played a grinder all tourney. On these slow courts he had not been tested by any punishing rallies. Ivo, serveborg, nothing longer than 3 strokes! De Bakker? Lesser serveborg,totally unreliable off the ground! Gasquet. Shotmaker, mentally brittle, again, very few rallies. Gasquet not prepared to dig in.
    Suddenly, just as in IW against Novak, Fed finds himself up against Kei, brought up on these courts, at home on these courts, happy to run all day. Add that to a cold night, lack of serve rhythm all leading to an average day at the office. Lack of serve leads to impotent ground game for Fed. He plays poorly under lights at Miami and has had no night games at all of late. And lack of serve leads to mental fatigue which leads to physical fatigue and therefore dicomfort all night, and Kei knew it! Plus he has beaten Fed before, and had nothing to lose. Bit like Fed these days against Novak etc. And that confidence from Kei leads to adrenalin which leads to energy. Whereas Fed looked flat from the start fighting to get adrenalised, and was pushing throughout.
    But overall, we shld be plsed. He has played a lot of matches and has travelled plenty! But in a good position pre Clay. SF IW? QF Miami? Bet we Wld hv all taken that if offered end last year!
    I am very proud of his first quarter, and as he said, building nicely….. Only bummer us that Berdshit won against the Dog! Roll on the Davis Cup and then upward to Madrid!

    • Also, Fed played those two matches on two consecutive days. Presumably there was no time for him to fit in any practice under night conditions once the schedule had come out? I suppose different courts under different types of lighting can be difficult to adjust to: probably some you can see the spectators, whereas others it may be more like a heavily-lit box with darkness all around?

    • I agree. No point getting down about it. Nishikori is a decent player too.

  8. We’ll. Rats. Guess I should have been thinking about which FED was going to show up. I wasn’t expecting Shankerer, or Can”t Make AFirst Serverer.

    As Scooter mentioned on the previous thread, I also wondered about his “couple of early exits” comment from IW. Frankly if that’s been on his mind I’d just as soon he got it out of the way now. And really, QF isn’t a terribly early exit. It’s only one round earlier than most of us thought was reasonable. I WAS reminded of last year, with the important difference that the context is completely different: this was a poor performance on the heels of. some beautiful tennis; last year was poor performances on the heels of more poor performances.

    Good points Jonathan about the colder conditions & the lights making a difference. And frankly I thought it was crazy to start a match at 9:30 at night in the first place. That’s practically bedtime!

    Hope Rita and Simon will keep us posted about their experiences next week in Geneva! (Guest post, guys?????)

    • Not sure about a full guest post, but we could try posting our feelings on it :) Unless you guys really want a guest post, but not gonna be much to write about except maybe dubs, Kazakhstan doesn’t have any fantastic players ;) No more seriously, this should be pretty straight forwards :P

      • Simon, do you know who plays first on Friday by any chance?

      • Not sure if you guys are close enough to take advantage, but I see from swiss_tennis on Twitter that there’s a public training session at Palexpo next Weds at 4pm…

      • Rita, isn’t it the Swiss No. 1?

      • Don’t think so. I believe the highest ranked player plays second. not sure though. But if I’m correct, Roger starts off the tie, then stan.

    • Feelings, the experience of the venue, organization, how close you were able to be to it, anything. Really. :)

    • Look forward to your post, Rita and Simon ;)
      Have a great weekend in Geneva!

    • I suppose he *was* actually only seeded to make the QFs, but it’s still a bit disappointing, really, given the way he’d been playing for the rest of the tourney. I was very surprised to see the scoreline when I woke up.

      And I quite agree about starting matches that late: it’s quite ridiculous.

  9. Sid TheCookieThief

    I’m shocked! I really am. There is no other way to show it. I mean, not a single comment from any of the Troll’s today? I thought Troll season was in full swing. Where are they?

    • Sid TheCookieThief

      They say, “careful what you wish for!”. It looks like Trolling is alive and well. See you all after the Gay season is over.

  10. Sid TheCookieThief

    I think this is one of those matches where Roger is gives it away, rather than his opponent taking it from him. A better Winner to UE differential, and losing 97-99 points, resulting in a loss.

    I always knew the match was going to be complicated, but I couldn’t imagine Roger would actually lose. I’m for the first time, actually taking this tournament positively.

    Forget it. Move on. There was nothing, nothing to learn on these stupid courts.

    • Sid you need to be mire critical with Fed and nit justify everything when he looses this was a terrible lost

      • Sid TheCookieThief

        It’s also about setting expectations, Mike. I’ve been critical in the past, IW for example, where the title was lost in the head. But Miami is alright. I couldn’t care less.

        Give Jon a break. He was up at like 3 am his time. Not sure when he uploaded this post, but I’m sure he was pretty groggy. So, let’s cut him some slack :-)

      • Agree. I never like to see him lose but I think that this is not a bad match to lose. Kei played well.
        Things are already looking so much better than the whole of last season. \(^_^)/

      • Why? Bet you wld hv taken his first 7 tourney results of 2014 if u had been offered them last yr. QF exit v a grinder on slow court at night in cold conditions he is known for disliking, not such a surprise or a disaster! Suffered on serve all night! Uncomfortable from the start. First 3 matches no prep for this one! Edberg tbh doesn’t hv the experience of this type of game! Fed has played and travelled a lot. Yes he shld hv won but never confident on serve so holding became troublesome and mentally fatiguing. In our own amateur game we all recognise that ! Some days yr serve is just on and never under threat , other days, u feel such pressure to hit gd serves knowing a) your oppo are better on the return and b) that yr serve that day is just not flowing! He has had a great 3 months and building nicely for clay and grass! Rome and Wimbledon titles plse!

    • Terrible losses are AO 2009, Wimbledon 2013, USO Semi Final 2010/11. Losing to Nishikori in Slowami is not a terrible loss in the slightest, it is just loss that is part and parcel of the sport.

  11. Sorry to disagree with you john it is a terrible lost, he never should lost this one the fatal service in order to confirm breaks is what make him loose, ghosts from last year start to appear

    • Boo Hoo Roger lost! It is a terrible lost, please. Forget all the great tennis he had to play just to get back in the rankings from #8. Roger couldn’t even play Miami last year because he hurt his back in IW. Roger after all the physical pain and the difficult losses, he still finished #6. Also depending on Berdych, he can be ranked #4 when the new rankings come out Monday. Roger played a lot of tennis and hit the wall, period. That happens to man his age and mileage. He doesn’t have the same stamina anymore. But no great job for staying positive thru the bad times from you people, just more whining. Roger will never be apprepiated around here or anywhere until he is gone. But you will probably jump on the next bandwagon by then.

      One positive note about Roger about climbing back in the rankings is Rafa trolls coming out because of the Slam record and they don’t want Roger to win anymore GS to put the record out of reach.

      • Sid TheCookieThief

        KFedFan, more than stamina, I think he just didn’t have answers. He has struggled in the past against Nishikori, I expected it. He seemed lost. So did Edberg. Let’s face it. Roger cannot play his style on this court.

        I can tell you, I felt like he wasn’t emotionally, or mentally invested in this one. What I mean by that is, sure, he tried to win, but he couldn’t have cared less if he had lost.

      • What a load of BS. I watched the whole match. Even though the match against Gasquet was only 49 minutes and in the final against Djo. you can see signs of fatigue. He was close to straight setting Kei, so saying he didn’t have any answers is so wrong. Also to say he couldn’t care less if he lost is just wrong and a lie. He was always stretching during the match because he was fatigued. He also slapped his thigh on missed shots. He had many chances in the first two sets to win. He couldn’t execute his game because of FATIGUE, not the court. ROGER IS GETTING OLDER IS GOING TO HAVE ISSUES WITH FATIGUE AND STAMINA OVER LONG STRETCHES.

      • Sid TheCookieThief

        Unfortunately, you haven’t won a game of tennis, until you’ve won the last point. And until you’ve won that last point, you haven’t found answers. Close to straight setting amounts to nothing.

        Was it fatigue, or wasn’t not getting enough competitive game leading to the QF? If you say it’s fatigue, fine, I’m in no mood to argue :-)

      • Yawn……All excuses. If Roger didn’t have any answers, this match would not have went 3 sets. Roger has been playing since Dubai and while playing both singles and doubles in IW. I have a question for you? Why don’t you want to admit that Roger played the match like someone who is tired. This match reminds of when Roger lost to Roddick in 2012 except in an earlier round. You know what was the same? Yup, Roger had played a lot of matches coming into Miami then too. His recovery time is going to worsen as he gets older.

      • But Roger wasn’t *scheduled* to play Miami last year.

  12. I was disappointed I could not watch his match and chant HOLD mantra. I think the bird poo did it, its bad luck really (just kidding). I noticed all his losses in Miami are night matches, a little odd but he is not able to adjust to night and SLOW conditions. Its not a bad loss anyways as Roger has been playing a lot of tennis. To be honest I didn’t expect him to reach the quarters at all. Overall is good result actually. Roger now has more time to rest and focus on next 2-3 matches ie Davis Cup next weekend. Hoop Suisse!!!

  13. Hi all!

    Pretty disapointing, I need to learn from you Jonathan, so positive.

    The presser is very interesting. Behing the poker face, you get a glimpse of all that goes through his mind. Sometimes, it’s like he forgets who he is!

    Next DC and then some well deserved rest and practice. He will be as strong as ever. Let’s remember he is one of the best clay player ever (if he could just beat Nadal at the FO, it would be the icing on the cake)! So looking forward to it!

  14. Thanks again for the post, Jonathan. Do you miss the trolls, Sid? Well, onwards and upwards!
    i was hoping Raonic was going to take out Nadal…oh well. How about Berdych beating Nadal…Nishikori beating Djokovic and Nishikori holding the trophy. Or is that too many points for Berdych?
    I’m off to Australia on Saturday so I won’t be watching tennis for a few weeks. Actually, not a bad time to go when you think about the tennis schedule.
    Good luck to Roger and Stan at DC!

  15. Hi Jonathan! Thanks for the post. I missed the match due to class. I was wondering, do you think there is a recurrence of that pesky back injury from last year? Like I said, I didnt see the match so I dont know how well he played and moved. But the serving stats are rather alarming! He lost, what, 18 points on serve the last 3 matches combined? And suddenly he gets broken 5 times? I thought that was a strange statistic! We all know how the back can hinder serving and movement, and we all also know how easily back injuries can flare up again if you have a weak back. One awkward landing or any sudden movement can cause the lower back to twinge.

    I’m really hoping it was just tiredness from all that tennis the past few weeks or just a bad day in the office.

    • I wondered about injury too Baey, as soon as I saw him appear in that jerkin. The “Hamburg” jerkin. Maybe it was just because it was cold, or maybe he was feeling some sort of tweak and didn’t want to risk it – not for this tournament. At any rate I did think he looked a little out of sorts right from the start, even when he was ahead. We’ll never know with Roger of course because he won’t complain.

    • Well, he did say in the presser that his body was fine …

    • Jerkin lol. Tank top :)

      I think no, no way he was injured. Was trying to serve big but just couldn’t get his serve going at all.

  16. “Let’s remember he is one of the best clay player ever” What a joke is that? There are so many players with better record book in the history.

    • Oh, Pablo is back. You haven’t improved sadly. Federer is one of the best clay court players of all time, its just that he was playing at the same as the King of Clay. Without Nadal he would have around 5 Roland Garros titles and several other clay titles.

      • Not to mention 2 or three CALENDER GS. you’re spurting a whole load of bullshit pablo, as usual… And to say that you came a set away from not commenting on this blog for a while and going into you’re hole last night :( damn!

      • I’m not saying Federer is a bad clay court player, but come on respect other players who were more succesful, tennis history doesn’t start and finishes with Federer. Counting Roger in the Top5 is ridicolous, where is Guillermo Vilas? Just in the last 20 years you can find better clay court players like Gustavo Kuerten, Thomas Muster or even Sergi Bruguera.
        In the 3 most important tournaments on clay he has 1 RG, 0 Montecarlo and 0 Rome. Top20 or maybe top15 but never ever top5.

      • Nadal and Borg are easily top 2. Kuerten, Brugera next. I put Fed after that, he has a better showing at the FO than Vilas.

        Mickey Carlo cannot be considered important really anymore since it is non mandatory. It used to be but now a lot of players skip it. Gstaad, Hamburg, Madrid, Estoril, Barcelona are all up there.

      • Without Nadal, Federer would be one of the most successful players ever on clay. You’re only putting other players that have won more clay titles than Federer in the argument which isn’t fair, as I’ve stated above that Federer was playing at the same time as the King of Clay. Federer was beating everyone on clay except Nadal. He could be on around 30 titles on clay, but Nadal stopped him.

      • Jonathan Vilas has far better record book than Roger. Taking into account Wilander and Lendl as well IMO is ridicolous to say that Federer isTop5.

        Conal and if Federer had to deal with prime Rafa and Nole since the very beginning he would probably have several GS Slams less, but they are just “ifs”. In your opinion Rafa is one of the greatest grass court players ever?

      • Vilas has 46 titles on clay or something, he played wayyyyy more on that than than any other surface. Doesn’t necessarily make him a better player because of that. Fed could have chosen to play Gstaad, Estroil, Hamburg etc etc every year to just rack up clay titles too. But overall Fed has been more consistent at the FO based on results.

        I never saw Vilas play, and we’ll obviously never know who would win between the two.

    • “Loving” the moon balling against Raonic last night! Ugly tennis, ugly match to watch!

      • Awful match, I agree. Obviously due to the kind of ugly tennis player Raonic is. Just big serve plus flat forehand and gambling every shot giving 0 rythim.

      • I didn’t watch it. Not a fan of Raonic.

      • And here I thought that people here did not attack other players! It was a competitive match, with some long rallies of which Raonic won several. He also won 18/24 points at the net, so it was not just a big serve. The score was Nadal won 4-6, 6-2, 6-4. So a much better match than Nadal vs Istomin (6-1, 6-0) or Fognini (6-2, 6-2). Those matches, not at all competitive, are the terrible ones.

  17. I LIKED: “…this is the ATP not the WTA…”

  18. Although a bit disappointing end of his great hard court season, stake of semi or better, agreed it wasn’t a sad loss. I felt Fed had enough tennis. He’s crimbed up to top 4 again, right? I want to tap on his back (or hug him would be better!) and say well done.

    Hey Jonathan, a well-written post as always. I must say my life as a Fed fan has become not only much more exciting and fun but also emotionally valanced one since I came to the peRFect tennis. Still ‘no Roger, no party’ but no more dipression after his loss.
    So thanks Jonathan and guys, keep up your fedentastic work :)

  19. Letz look on the bright side.
    Saw we blame the loss on some Japanese voodoo. a bird pooping on Roger a day before as tweeted by him was definitely a bad sign.
    Oh well, off to DC. Have a great feeling Davis cup is for Suisse this year and they don’t even have to defend it next year :)

  20. No, no, no, no one should talk about Berd winning this please….we nid the No 4 ranking.
    By the way, is it just me or just coincidence that number 1 and 4 are always in the top half most times when the draw comes out. Does this mean Fed and Nadal will always be seeded to meet in d semis for the clay season?
    If that is it, I think we should hope Fed gets to Number 3 after Madrid and Wawrinka is given Nadal to handle. Swiss Bombs!!

    • 3 and 4 are drawn randomly into either half :) well supposedly. Depends who it is and where the money is of course.

      Doubt Berdych wins it. I suppose Raonic getting a set should give him so hope as least he has enough power to hit through this slow court but his record against Nadal is poor.

  21. My last post was in reply to mike saying we shld be more critical!!

  22. Thanks for the post, always welcome after a loss. The loss was not very painful, because it was to Nishikori and because it was in Miami and as you say, he was never going to win that against possibly three grinders in a row.

    Imho it was however still a match he could and should have won, but there was imho a very noticable decline in movement during the middle of the second set. The serve %age was rather bad during the whole match, but during the first part of the match Nishikori didn’t win much off the ground. He won only 20% of his 2nd serves in the first set! That’s why he faced so many bps in the first set.

    Then suddenly Fed’s level dropped during the second set with regard to movement and therefore timing and quality of groundstrokes suffered. Yes, Nishi managed to get more first serves in, but that’s neither here nor there, because the reason for Fed’s loss is that he couldn’t hold his own serve when he was a set and a break up. So it was on Fed’s racket so to speak.

    On another note I don’t get the need of Fed fans to “not making excuses for losses”. Is that some kind of overreaction to Nadal fans happily claiming injuries while their hero is running around like a rabbit? In my view it’s not taking anything away from the opponent to point out physical shortcomings that are leading to notable drops in performance. And really, who wants to say what is first, something mental or something physical? All I can say is that I saw hampered movement for whatever reason. And in my view that’s the reason for the loss.

    • I didn’t really think he moved badly at all. All shortcomings stemmed from poor serving and that put more pressure on his ground game. He actually defended very well as he was on the back foot a lot of the time I thought.

      I agree he should have won though, 2 breaks in a set you gotta win it.

  23. Thanks for the report Jonathan – your last one for a while I suppose, sadly. I think you’ve got it all spot on and am happy to see a positive slant on the match and are not too critical. As long as Roger doesn’t feel any regret (or at least only slight regret) and as long as it hasn’t dented his confidence at all then it really doesn’t matter. Looking forward to European matches myself, as you are no doubt. Felt a bit like I’d been working night shifts after the match!

    Going off at a tangent, but how on earth did Raonic manage to take a set from Nadal last night?? Did he play scintillating tennis (would be a first) or did Nadal lose it for a while. The result is closer than I would have expected.

    • Yeah onto the good time difference for a good few months now! Rogers Cup is where it’s back onto the night shift :)

      No idea on Raonic as I didn’t watch, guess he served well but then got figured out.

    • In the first set Nadal had break points in 4 of the 5 games Raonic served but he managed to survive till 5-4 and then Nadal after wasting those opportunities he didn’t play good and even lost the game with a double fault in the set point. In the second set Raonic disappeared and Nadal took advantage of 4-0. Third set wasn’t bad specially after 3-3 Nadal raised his game and made plenty of FH winners. Ugly match to watch.

  24. Well not expected but i didn’t even feel upset after the match for an odd reason. I think it’s because Roger is becoming soooo consistent. But Slowami was never a happy hunting ground(even in his prime, Fed only won in 2 times) so it’s not a huge loss. Plus is rather him lose here than lose to Rafa :)
    So off to Davis Cup, he has a good chance to win it no? :) with Stan and in Switzerland, I see us advancing to SF!
    Who do you want and think will Win Slowami. If Rafa wins, we hear how he’s GOAT…… smh

  25. Oh, I got I into a debate yesterday with a Nadal fan. This Rafan said Roger is hyped and is now only a “QF-guy”…… I mean what can we expect for a 33 year old?! Too bad we know who the true champion is :) Nice post Jonathan :P

    • Lol, I guess that’s why Fed reached better than QF in all tournaments this year (+ since Basel last year) with the sole exception of Miami! Some expert this Nadal fan is. :D

    • I read comments on this blog and other forums all the time. The people that follow tennis are concerned that the gap in the field will become wide between Nadal and Djokovic. I understand the concern but to put pressure on a 30-something man just because you don’t want to Nadal and Djokovic to run away with the field. It hard enough to compete physically on the tour, but to compete at age 30 and beyond is more difficult. I am a big Fed fan, but Roger is going have to pick his spots. People point to Agassi. Agassi may won 5 GS after 29, but he had the normal career arc where he didn’t waste his prime years, he would have been retired. Roger didn’t waste his prime years so he is feeling the pain now like any player who has not missed much time off the tour. Roger has played more matches now than Agassi played in his whole career. This obsession with Roger winning GS or keeping the gap close with Nadal and Djokovic is getting to the point fans were upset that Roger and Mirka are having more children while he is still active and he may have take time off when she gives birth. Do fans actually think his wife and children are so low in the pecking order, he would choose tennis over being with his wife giving birth to their child?

      End of Rant

  26. How can you guys survive the coming Fedless month after DC? :(

    Here’s MrSeba’s new video being just uploaded as I miss Roger already. Beautifully done, enjoy!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wG7xfoTtOc&feature=share&list=UUQwbA0OWz1kaScs5-x7mlmg

  27. Also have you checked out his top 10 Fed’s shots series such as this?

    http://youtu.be/nsqZO2WGyjs

  28. Hmmm…what to do?? I want Nishikori to win just to show that when Roger lost to him it was for a reason.
    But on the other hand I want Novak to win, because well, who else will stop Rafa from winning??
    So… I am going with Novak. Hoping he beats Nishikori quickly and saves energy and hunger to defeat Rafa in the final…

    Anyone going to watch the matches???

  29. Folks, I can now get on with my work, which requires a significant concentration ;) . When Roger plays, there is usually no way that I could stay concentrated for long. My work efficiency gos down the drain, as my thoughts are just with Roger’s, and on tennis courts. You see how annoyed if Roger loses :(
    I am sure that Roger and Stan will take the DC back to Swiss. I am hoping that both of them will be inspired to kick some asses in the European clay cout season! :)
    Allez Roger!

  30. I don’t believe it: now Kei has retired against Novak without playing a shot???!!! GRRRRRRRRR!!!!!

    • HaHa! It didn’t surprise me that Kei withdrew because going into the match with Roger he already spent over 6 hrs on court then add the two hours on court in his match with Roger. Him and Roger looked pretty tired. If Roger had advanced, he would probably have not withdrawn but he would had to think about.

    • I’ve just seen this as well & am also stunned. Groin injury apparently. Sustained during the QF? Who knows.

    • Federer would never have withdrawn if he had beaten Nishikori.

      Yeah could have been, didn’t look hampered though so maybe it got worse once he got off court.

      • Could have been one of those things where the adrenaline masks it while you’re on court, then you wake up the next morning and can barely move, I suppose.

        I couldn’t believe it the first time I logged onto the ATP site and saw a blank scoreboard, but to get the same thing again when I got home this evening …

        I suppose the only good thing is that both players ought to have lost their rhythm to a similar extent, so I hope one won’t be too disadvantaged.

  31. I think that the federer curse is becoming a reality
    Beat me and you will get lose next round !

    • There was a post on Federer Fans forum about it, loads of players struggle to win their next match only Del Po, Djoker, Nadal and some others have done it.

  32. What the hell! How dare Nishikori! How dare he deny Federer and then withdraw?! Can someone penalise his sorry arse! *excuse my language, if you are a Fed fan, you will be mad!!!*
    I think the ATP had better start considering replacing wiyhdrawals with lucky losers! Really, how many matches did Novak play before winning this Miami title?

  33. These rules need looking at. Sony must hv lost a ton of money as he only withdrew 2 hrs before. Poor poor show! Shld hv withdrawn earlier or ag Fed at least allowing a semi to be played! V poor!

    • I don’t think Fed would’ve beaten Djokovic on these courts Susie but what can you do? It’s like at Aus open, Nadal went into final only to be injured. Fed doesn’t have to be involved in the slugfest tennis on these courts, I’m guessing he only came to Miami to get ranking points so mission achieved.

    • Yeah will definitely hurt their financials and TV broadcasters will be annoyed…

  34. Wow…. That was well worth wining a tight match just to withdraw later…

    Might as well hand Dull the title… Djoker’s losing match rhythm with this. Really think Dull is gonna roll over him…

    • Berdych is such a clown. He withdrew before his match against Nadal. He claimed a stomach problem because he ate something bad. Does anybody think it’s wierd he’s been playing good all week long and then when he is just about to play Nadal, who he had lost 17 times in a row, he comes up lame with a stomach problem. If I have a chance to move up in the rankings by winning the tournament, I am not eating anything to make me have a stomach problem.

    • I don’t know, Nadal hasn’t won Miami before and Novak probably still on a high from Indian Wells. I edge Djoker to win it. Both semi opponents retiring just reiterates how bad Miami is.

    • I pick Nadal to win just on how he looked this week so far. Djoker was still ropey in Indian Wells but Fed didn’t pressure him in the tie break to really test his resolve. I think if Fed was able to do that he prob won the breaker.

  35. Opportunity to vote for your favorite Wimbledon poster. Neat to see all the possibilities!

    http://espn.go.com/sportsnation/poll/_/id/5078/favorite-wimbledon-poster#top

    (That may actually be the results page, but it should get you close. Possibly US only, not clear.)

  36. What? Nishikori and Berdych withdrew!! Both of them!! .. Can’t believe it..
    Well, at least we’re now sure who’s N°4 now :D

  37. Now Berdych has also withdrew??? Seriously???

  38. Haha, u cldnt make that up! Serves Slowami right! Neither Novak nor Nadal shld get any points for WO’s. Applies in tournaments here!!

  39. Wow ….. Nishikori and Berdych have withdrawn from their semi final matches. Sounds really fishy and dodgy if you ask me.??!! The only thing goodd thats Federer will be no.4 now in the rankings.
    Its going to be one of those baseline ball bashing finals with hardly many winners. What a load of bs. Anyway I hope the Djoker wins. But then again I didn’t want any of these two to win. If Djokovic wins he will join Federer as Indian wells and Miami double winner twice. And if Nkeedal wins he will be winner of 8 different masters 1000 with a total of 27 absolute Bullshit as majority of them are from Micky Carlo and the other clay like Rome. Again bs bs bs!!!! What a joke, what a F*****g liberty! !!!!

    As usual Jonathan good post. :)

  40. What!!! Berdych toowithdraws from his match!!!
    Damn Miami!!!

  41. Now hopefully, Nadal withdraws tomorrow :)

  42. Not sure if I should laugh or #facepalm. What are the odds 2 players withdrew from their respective semi-final match. Best part Roger is still at Miami chillax-ing by the pool….poetic justice? The curse of beating RF is alive!!! Roger’s ranking is now no 4 which is good news to all Fedfans

  43. Now the birdman has withdrawn because of gastroenteritis. So no semi-final atp play.
    Thanks Jonathan for the post match thoughts. I was a bit bummed for a wee while. Feeling better now. Well I hope picky/tuggy does not win.

    Now to wait for DC play.

  44. We are gonna have another episode of the best rivalry ever, the match that tennis fans want to see, No1 against No2. Tennis at the highest level ever seen between the 2 best players of the last 5 years. Can’t wait for it.

    • Yeah can’t wait to watch this 6 hour final, in which half of the time will pass with both taking time in between points no doubt.

    • Two best players of the last five years… Because Roger was there before! And i can’t understand how tennis fans can appreciate endless moonballing back and forth… Looks like there still hitting warmups, but just running around the court…

    • Hopefully better than last years final. I figure Nadal might play more aggressive than usual.

  45. Back into a top 4 after a solid run in this stage of the year with a title, not too bad Fed, not bad at all! Time for a break Jonathan I’d say. Weird how Roger struggles in the night at Miami, still a joke tournament. I am in shock that both Djokovic and Nadal got into the final with retired opponents, they have definitely conserved their energy for the slugest final tomorrow on the courts of Slowami!

  46. Haha, no semis at Slowami??? Lolz, they are going to lose a lot of money now!

    • Wonder what the organisers did? Refund the tickets? Try and spread half the matches over the same time? Push the remaining matches into one session? Can’t see the punters being satisfied with two women’s doubles matches.

    • You get a ticket for 2015. Bit of a joke as what if you weren’t planning on going? I guess you could sell them but added hassle.

  47. So…. Rafa should definitely NOT win Miami… Can you believe it? For 2 or 3 years Novak only needs Cincy to be the first to have all 9 ATP 1000 titles, now suddenly if Rafa wins Miami HE will only need 1 more, while Roger has been close a couple of times to be the first to get them all???

    That is why for me Novak should win (even with 2 withdrawals) and NOT Rafa….
    If Rafa wins Miami, the Great Uncle Toni will do anything so that Rafa can win Shanghai…
    And Rafa does NOT deserve to be the first to win all 9, Roger does and after him Novak does…..

    • “Can you believe it? For 2 or 3 years Novak only needs Cincy to be the first to have all 9 ATP 1000 titles” False, he won Montecarlo last year for the first time.

      “Roger has been close a couple of times to be the first to get them all” False, almost mission impossible for Roger, he needs Montecarlo and Rome therefore he needs to beat the King.

      And Rafa doesn’t need Shangai, he needs Paris.

      If the player with the record of M1000 with difference (26 at the age of 27) doesn’t deserve to be the first to get all of them I don’t know who deserves it :)

      • Remind me why he has the most? Try staying serious when you answer and don’t spew nonsense everywhere please?

      • Same reason why Tiger Woods won 14 majors or Valentino Rossi 9 World Champs.

      • Hey Pablo, I was on of the only ones on this site saying that I miss your comments…
        I am almost regretting that. Almost :)

        Didn’t Roger and Rafa both need Shanghai? Thought I read it somewhere. If you say it is Paris, then maybe you are right. My bad.

        Roger has been close to winning Rome. Why can’t he win that once? Your hero is also getting older you know, winning is also not that easy for him anymore…

        And Pablo…. would be have this conversation right now if there were ANY 1000 titles on grass?? Would “dominant unplayable younger Roger” not won them all or at least 9 out of 10 of them?? Rafa does not even do well when he plays Halle….

      • I have to agree with Pablo here. We can’t say that Nadal doesn’t deserve to be the first to win all the Masters. If he wins it, he deserves it. But that doesn’t change the fact that I’d rather Nadal didn’t win another match if I had it my way- exactly what John said (he cheats, grunts, plays disgusting sickening tennis) , but I guess that’s not happening.

        Anyway Pablo, hope it’s a good match on Sunday. May the better player win.

        Also did anyone notice Pablo was nowhere to be seen for the last 3 weeks. Interesting that it coincided with Federer playing like a beast.

      • Katyani, it wouldn’t make any different to have one M1000 on grass and actually I would like it there are too many tittles on hardcourts. Roger’s problem is on clay court tourmanents he only got 1 of 3. And about what you said about Rafa on grass courts if here people claim than Roger is one of the greatest clay court players ever I can say with more arguments that Nadal is one of the greatest grass courts players ever (5 consecutive finals winning 2 Wimbledons.

        Roger and Rafa won Madrid on indoors before it was changed to Shanghai, that’s the reason why the Atp considers it’s done.

      • 18 of the 26 are from clay, where we all agree that Dull is the best that there has been. Roger has only 6 on clay, but if dull was not around I’m pretty sure he would have had 15. Can’t say the same thing about dull and hard courts. Even if Roger was not around there were enough good players to keep dull less than 10 on hard courts. If there were 2 or 3 1000′s every year on grass, Roger would be far ahead, I’m sure.

      • Hey Gaurav, “We can’t say that Nadal doesn’t deserve to be the first to win all the Masters”.
        Yes, we can. I can…. Because for me that is the truth.
        I don’t believe in getting rewarded for unfair play. Doesn’t work like that :)

      • Hey Pablo, 1000 tour titles on grass would make a lot of difference… Maybe Roger would not win all of them, but the most. And yes, Rafa is also a good grass court player. Maybe not the last 2 years, but he was before that.

    • Disagree completely, Katyani! The real reason Rafa should not win this tournament is because he’s Rafael Nadal. It’s nothing to do with how close he will get if he does, it’s because he cheats, grunts, plays disgusting sickening tennis, and likely dopes as well…

      • Hey John, your comment + 1 !!!
        Still, I don’t want Rafa to be the first to win them all, doesn’t deserve that at all….

  48. Not enough first serves from Feds, really hurt him in the end. Ofcourse Nishikori had to withdraw in the semi finals but that’s tennis. Great week yet again for Federer. Keen for some Davis Cup action.

  49. Bendych taking bending over to new leveles. Never had any respect for Berdych and this sort of thing doesn’t surprise me at all.

    I remember back in 2006 when people were so deluded that they actually believed Berdych was going to be Nadal’s nemisis throughout their careers. Hasn’t quite turned out that way.

    • Gastroenteritis apparently. Who knows.

      • sorry but I dont buy it.Look, certain players just know, that when they look across the net at the player facing them, that they have NO chance whatsoever to compete with, what is essentially, greatness personified on a tennis court. This is, very simply, what happened today in the semi-final.

        But for Berdych to pull-out of his match vs Nadal today? I just don’t get.

      • I don’t see why you doubt about it. That problem can happen and there are no reasons why he has to withdraw apart from those who are fans of conspiracy theories. Let’s be serious.

      • Hey Hawkeye, like you I doubted that Berdych became sick and I believed that he “tanked” the match before it started because he was scared of Rafa. I mean how can you get sick in a day after beeing alright??? Well, I got my answer :) I was alright on Friday, got very sick on Saturday (one day flu) and now I am alright again. So, God punished me immediately for thinking that Berdych was not sick :)
        So… now I am going with Berdych was not scared, but actually sick :)

        Hope Novak beats Rafa in the final….

  50. I loved the semi finals! Epic matches! Slowami is such a fantastic tournament!

  51. Points shld be deducted here! Absolutely ridiculous! Stupid tournament! U r right Jonathan! Nothing memorable comes out of Miami!

  52. You know what they should do to Miami Jonathan? Make it indoors on grass, increase the gap from FO – WB to about 5 weeks, and put in Miami 2-3 weeks before Wimbledon.

    • They can’t do that because for that, players would have to come to the US for Indian Wells (hard court), fly to Europe for the clay court, fly back to the US for Miami, then fly back to Europe (grass) and THEN if they can still stand trans Atlantic flights and haven’t contemplated giving up their dreams for a regular 9-5 job, catch the next flight across the atlantic for the US hard court swing… and then back to Europe for the Indoor Swing, after a short detour in Shanghai/ Japan. And heck, just for fun, let’s have the WTFs in Brazil. Players would love that.

      :p

      • such a hard life, isn’t it?

      • Pablo, why do you hang around on this site? If you want to say something useful, how about saying something good about players. No need for this ridiculous bashing, if you have a point to make, make a positive point about your favourite player! Seriously, if your main source of entertainment is being a total idiot to rile up Fed fans on a Federer blog, you urgently need to see a psychiatrist. Please, for everyones sake, start acting reasonably, leave this blog, or book an appointment at a clinic.

        /end rant

    • Yah. Not possible. There are two tournaments I find unworthy of masters 1000: Miami and Paris (obviously not talking about MC, that’s should event be a 500….)

      kill the two (or at least upgrade the facilities in Paris… Terrible venue). And throw in a grass masters. Like FAST grass :)

      • Paris?? What’s wrong with the venue? Always provides great indoor tennis.

      • no no, the tennis is great! But hte infrastructure for the fans is not a master 1000 level. I’ve been there, and they have the big center court (which is fairly nice, but for god’s sake, pull the f*cking nets down form in front of the players!). Then, the only play court they have is a tiny secondary court where you can seat 100-200 fans, which resembles an amateur club level court.

        I agree, the tennis is usually very good, but the infrastructure is terrible…

      • Oh yeah I remember watching some matches on YouTube and wondering why were there funny lines on the screen. Turns out they were nets covering the court side boxes to protect the crowd from 200kph serves ;)

      • Indoor tennis is the ugliest in the tour. Firstable the atmosphere is far worse than in outdoors and obviouly the game suits players like Raonic, Isner etc. If you like to watch a match which half of the points are decided by the serve yes it is your surface. I still have nightmares with the S&V players of the 90′s, please no more.

        Montecarlo is in the top3 of M1000 speaking about beauty and tradition. I still don’t know why is non-mandatory instead of others however every year the best players take part of it.

        P.D. Rome is the best M1000.

      • No no, Pablo, if you haven’t noticed, Isner and Raonic are most successful on the American hardcourt Master 1000 tournaments :P
        It’s aggressive tennis and quick rallies compared the shit we see on clay. Moonballing and long slow rallies. Madrid is probably the best clay tournament as its the one of the fastest.

  53. Is there going to be a match in slowami tonight do we think? No one’s sat too long on the Miami beaches and suffered heatstroke or any other mishap?!

    • Yeah lets hope it’s a decent match… Usually Nole-Rafa matches are somewhat decent, but on such a slow court as this… not sure…

      • Hey Simon, yesterday the women played their final. Serena was 2-5 down in the first set, Na Li was serving for the first set twice and still lost. Serena won, but I felt bad for Na Li. She played so great, still lost. But oh my God, both took SO long in between points, don’t know why they didn’t get multiple time violations.

        Guess that will happen with Rafa and Novak too. A good match, some good points, al lot of defending and a lot of taking time between points…

  54. Watching Dull lose, PRICELESS. Hope Djoker can keep up his play and finish it. :)

  55. Anyone watching? Novak won the first set….

    • Am watching ;)
      Hope nadal break noe thu :)
      I see djoko wining!

      • Hey Shamtoot, let Novak just win Miami, then we can worry about how dangerous he is becoming again :)

        By the way, I know they got both time violations, but to be honest Serena and Na Li were yesterday FAR worse and they got none…

  56. Novak playing fantastic and Nadal playing bad specially his return is not working at all.

  57. Looks like we might be interesting clay court season. I have a sneaky suspicion Novak’s going to be fired up for the French this year. I don’t think it’s going to be Nadal.

    But what a match by Novak. He made Rafa look like a club player. I mean Nadal was spraying routine balls, plonking serves into the middle of the net, being kept off balance in every single rally… entertaining to say the least. Just makes me admire Federer all the more. The 32 year old has given Novak a better run for his money in the last few matches, even in defeat than the current, in-his-prime, world number one.

    • True that Gaurav. Rafa did try, but Roger really MAKES Novak work for a win, just like at IW.
      But honestly, matchpoint was great play by both Rafa and Novak.
      I really believe Rafa is not winning RG this year. Roger or Novak, preferably Roger ofcourse.
      And for Novak… oke, the guy deserves to be the first to win all 9. If Roger cannot win Cincy this year, I will be rooting for Novak….

      • All about playing styles. Novak dislikes Rogers changing of pace, low slice, chip charge etc. Novak likes the rhythm from Nadal. Also Rafa has been hitting short of late which favours Novak more, right into his zone. No surprises for him and think he is slightly in Rafas head now! Admirable tennis but not memorable! Can you really remember one great shot? Even the match point was all about Novak retrieving and Nadal failing to put the ball away!

      • Hey Susie, agree with your comment. Matchpoint was not really that great, but really worth watching it. Honestly they both made it a special point, Novak just happened to win it. OFCOURSE it is not a “Roger fantastic point”, but that is because only Roger knows how to make breathtaking points :)

  58. Don’t see Dull winning too many French Opens from here on. Feels good. For a while it looked like he could win another 5 titles there and overtake Roger in slam count. That would have been very unfair.

  59. Nice to see all these comments about Rafa (not the first year I heard of it). You will have to eat your words again. This defeat comes in the best moment for Rafa, clay court season is about to start…And we all know what happens next :)

    • Yup! Dope dope dope, MTO, dope, biting trophies, rinse and repeat… Then comes wimby where he loses his knees/ back/ wrist/ shoulder/ elbow (choose one or more of the above) goes on a leave until Cincy/ Montreal, roars back at USO (dope…) The loses wtv he lost at wimby to screw up the indoor season, and complain that the WTF is not on clay coz it’s too hard for him to win.

  60. What a stress free match!! Why doesn’t Nadal get the message? Miami is never his to be won…
    Now on to the clay season. Believe me, anyone who plays Rafa from here on will be convinced that they indeed have a winning chance!
    Hope Stefan has jotted some notes though, they will come in a lot handy for us to win the RG title this year :)
    Nadal def not keeping the No 1 position too long ds yr!

  61. Pablo! Pablo! Time for the clay season and time for you to be defensive. I will be watching Nadal closely! I have a good feeling you will be making lots of excuses this year! :)
    He’s getting old Pablo. Remember the word ‘old’…welcome to our world!

    • Finally Utch :) Thank God, someone here on this site too is saying that the guy IS getting older. For a while it looked like I would be the only one saying this thing no one believed :) Even “the greatest of all time according to Pablo” is getting older and more beatable, the same age Roger was when he started to lose more…..

      • He did look noticeably slower I thought!

      • Hey Susie, I always found it so strange that at the end of last year and the beginning of this year Rafa fans (mostly on BR) said that since Rafa won 2 GS last year, he would win like 20 GS in total. I mean like come on… After a specific age even the great ones are winning less. It happened to all of them, even Roger. So why on earth do Rafa fans think that their guy will win every match till the day he retires???
        Rafa is now the same age Roger was when he started to lose more. What happens when Rafa’s girlfriend decides that she wants to marry him or have kids??? Then Rafa (and even Novak and Andy and the rest) will all go “the Roger way”…..

  62. What do you think these guys are thinking when they win/ lose a tournament? Should “I want to congratulate Novak for a great match” translate to I hate you for beating me again and again? :P And should: “I want to congratulate Rafa on a great match, he played some really good stuff” translate to “Hah! I beat you again!!” ? :P

  63. Yeah, no matter how much these guys respect each other, you can never be true friends in a professional sport with anyone (including your team because they can leave and go and work for your rivals) until you have retired. With the exception of family of course. I would be willing to bet that after epic losses, they all feel crushed. I mean look at Roger WB 2008 and AO 2009, Nadal WB 2007, Roddick WB 2009, Djokovic FO 2013 and Murray WB 2012.

  64. Simon, I like your explanation of the upcoming tennis seasons. Very funny but true. So happy that Nole won although not a fan. Somewhat happy ending in Miami.

  65. The rare funny reply from Nadal.

    It is, in part, his court now after his four titles, and he remains — whatever the surface — the biggest challenge to a rival who has long made it clear how much he relishes challenges. Is Nadal glad, then, that Djokovic exists?

    “No,” Nadal said immediately, as laughter reverberated through the interview room. “I like challenges, but I am not stupid.”

  66. I am watching Djoker/Nadal Slowmi match just cause I want to watch Djoker gave Nadull a tennis lesson. Let’s see if Nadal is able to defend both Rogers and Cincy + USO titles

  67. Hi guys,

    Something to read about Fed while Jonathan is taking a well-deserved break ;)

    http://www.sportsonearth.com/article/70198844/roger-federer-is-still-competitive-even-as-he-passes-his-peak

    Funny that I thought too Gasquet looked rather older for his age when I saw him play at Monte-Carlo and Wimbledon few years back. Gasquet sounds like ‘gasu-ketsu’ in my language, meaning run-out of gas (petro), he looked just as his name to me.

    • Super knowledgeable writing. Have always thought Gasquet looked older! He has just pulled out of Davis Cup QF! So many injuries so early this season!

  68. Aww, Wanda, cut Gasquet some slack. I love the fact that he’s a daddy and I love his backhand (when he’s not shanking). Agreed, the Fed match up was an embarrassment for him, but this dude is cool. He may not have a Federesque career, but he’s hanging in there, especially in the top 15.
    Some guys are very gud players destined never to win 1000s or slams :)

  69. Even Fed defended him greatly in his presser and didn’t rejoice much after the match, I’m sure Fed can relate with him in so many ways

  70. Hey Guys, I know this is a late reply so not sure if anyone will be reading this but here goes… as a lifelong Fed fan, I would like to throw in a curve-ball post Miami: does anyone even consider the possibility that Roger might
    have ‘tanked’ this match ( against Nishkori )not wanting to play Novak again and Nadal more than likely in final ( which turned out to be the case )? Perhaps that was the goal – to get to the quarters and bow out, or maybe the semis and possible final if Murray had been his semi opponent instead of Djokovic? Or maybe he is keeping something up his sleeve for the slams so as not to play his hand too much against Dull and Djoker? I am posting this on behalf of a friend of mine who raised this question ( and they are a Fed fan also ). What do people think?

    • I love it.

      Anytme a Fed loss is really a sneaky move and therefore not a loss I’m all for it!

      So I say yes. That’s what he did!

    • Hey Paul, to be honest, I did consider it. Maybe not to avoid Novak. Roger knows there is a 50% chance with Novak that he can win. But I did think that he might have wanted to avoid Rafa. Roger knew very well that Rafa would be in the final. So yes, I did think Roger “tanked” the match to avoid Rafa.
      BUT….. I don’t know if you saw the match. Roger really fought till the very last point. He did not want to lose to Kei. If I had not seen that match I would have said yes…. But NO WAY, Roger tanked the match after he fought SO HARD in the third set…

  71. The Greek Gambler

    Somebody in here mentioned it already . Cant remember exactly who.
    Roger maybe subconsciously tanked the match, knowing he d have to face Novak and then Rafa, or at least if such a thought passed his mind at a point in his match vs Kei it could have brought him a little bit more down “ look at me struggling with this B class little grander… F**k man I can not go through the GOAT grinders in two consecutive days.. That’s not going to do any good ”
    This is quite possible.
    Another thing that passed my mind while watching the final is something that again someone mentioned in here ( Off course we read everything first in this blog ;) ) :
    Nadal s game seems like chickenshit for the Joker. Frustration was so obvious in Rafas expressions . Throwing to Novak everything he could but still not good enough.

    I agree with Katyani that favorite for FO 14 is Djokovic and it is about time. A second disappointment for Rafa after AO maybe even bigger this time. It may well be that will see him go down faster than 5 year old older Roger. That used to be the doctors predictions a couple of years ago. I think it was 4 years ago when I read that Rafas legs are in a similar condition of a veteran football player.

    Off course I would never wish he stop playing because he is maybe the 8th or 9th best tennis player of all times and he introduced quite a few new things for the game whether we like it or not. Tough competitor , strong fighter however dirty at times.
    So I want him to be around and I ll miss him if he stops but 14 GS ( is that correct?) is more than enough…If there was a ministry of tennis justice justice or some other super power of any kind they could even take a few away from him letting him keep 9. Lets say 7 FO 2 hardcourt slams no wimbies.

    So let me predict no more GS for RN, a declining game from now on and an eventual retirement at the age of 31 to 32 when his H2H with Roger will be 25-17.

    • “I agree with Katyani that favorite for FO 14 is Djokovic and it is about time”.
      Yeah….. but GG, don’t you remember my prediction??? ROGER will win RG 2014 :)
      If he doesn’t than Novak will, but certainly not Rafa. More players are figuring out how to beat him.
      He might equal Sampras with 14 or not, but he will NEVER equal or surpass Roger :)

    • always love to read your comments/posts Gambler ;)
      so objective and to the point without being biased.
      regarding Nadal winning RG, I see your point and I do believe Novak has good chance, but again, his chances on 2012 was more obvious even though the 2013 was his match to win but Nadal refused to let down.
      it will be interesting RG this season.
      for Nadal wining another GS, I do believe that since nadal is still playing, he has the chance, unless he stopped playing.

  72. Hey guys, happy birthday to Mirka, the one and only Real Mrs. Roger Federer :)

  73. The Greek Gambler

    SHIT MAN…

    Have you read ? Rafa is out for the clay season….
    Maybe he ll miss the rest of 2014 all together…

    I must say I am shocked … When I was witting my previous comment I never thought I d be so close to reality.
    On the other hand its normal , only considering the state of his knees . I was wondering how he was managing fighting so hard during matches …

    Phew…. What a shock that is …

    I am sure what people will come out and say know…

  74. The Greek Gambler

    oh come on Katyani you spoiled it :(

    never mind so much though cause it was pretty obvious and i dont think many would buy it

    • Hey GG, yes, today I pay extra attention. My teammanager tried to pull one over us too, but my collegues and I were wayyyy too smart for her :) That’s the only reason why I got yours :)

      But… I am still sorry if I spoilt it for you…. Maybe you can try another one???

  75. LOL @ GG and Katyani
    @ Katyani, is Mirka’s Birthday also an April fool’s joke

  76. Stan is almost going crazy looking for @rogerfederer on the practice courts for the past one hour. Can someone please call him and tell him to go for practice and stop holding Stan up :)

  77. Thanks KFedFan. She doesn’t need anymore birthday wishes though, she’s got the best gift ever. Some of us are climbing over seats and heads just to get an autograph (story of me at the WTF 2012)!!!

  78. Roger gone missing again it seems. From Stan who is at the stadium practicing:

    Where are you @rogerfederer …!?

  79. Nooo Simon (in horror), that’s a really expensive joke.!
    On another note, can’t believe you are soo close and yer aren’t checking out the match. I doubt if it will even be shown on tv here.:(

  80. He is going, just not to the practice!

    Does anyone think Fed might benefit from entering Barcelona? Hv always thought it cld be good for practice purposes?? To prep for Madrid?

    • Barcelona is at sea level, Madrid at 2188 feet (667 metres) above – so not so much. Really different conditions.

    • Agree with Thinker :)

    • You guys ever think there is a reason he is not playing but Davis Cup in the month of April. Roger is not a vulture. While his schedule is not ironclad, still he has his reasons and other priorities for when or when not to play. Roger has more priorities than just tennis and sometimes fans loose sight of that. I think he will be just fine playing Madrid, Rome and FO. But can he change his mind , sure.

  81. I don’t think he should play MonteCarlo for 3 reasons 1) Djokovic is defending there and he’s ready to drop blood to make sure he retains the points there. Nadal will be desperate to make a statement win, he doesn’t have a 1000 title this year and 3) he’ll probably lose. Dnt think dere are any fond memories for him there.

  82. AHHHHH!! Is Roger really gonna wear this?? o_O Looks like a f*cking pajama!!! :( Fail from Nike if he wears this…. this is 2013 style. Maybe worse…

    http://www.tenniswarehouse-europe.com/descpageMANIKEA-NMSPRFC.html

  83. Obviously I love watching Fed. No wonder Youtube recommended this to me :)

    http://youtu.be/bgjlZ1sdQZs

  84. Draw is out for the Davis Cup: Wawrinka v. Golubev, Federer v. Kukushkin; Wawrinka/Federer v. Korolev/Nedovyesov; Wawrinka v. Kukushkin, Federer v. Golubev.

    Does that mean Roger and Stan will really be playing all those matches do you think, or will it depend on results. Can’t see why they would play on Sunday if they win the 3 other matches. On the other hand, maybe they want to see how well they last with just the two of them with tougher competition later on.

    • The Greek Gambler

      I think its best of 5 matches so there could be 3 to 5 matches.
      Over here in Athens we get to see not Fed but babyFed Dimitrov.
      This is a DC match between Greece and Bulgaria for which of the two will remain at the second division of DC.
      Organisation is crapy as usualy and a large crowd will be packed in a small stadium when they could have aranged the matches to take place at the Olympic Stadium where 2004 games where held.
      No way I am going … after all Sharapova s not coming ;)

      • Over here they’ve sold tickets as 3-day passes only, so it would be unfair not to play on Sunday. But I wonder if they will be replaced by other team members if they don’t really need to play. I’m going tomorrow – definitely! Have given Saturday’s tickets away (not that interested in the doubles) and am wondering whether to do the same with Sunday’s or keep them just in case.

        At first I thought the 3-day pass was unfair, but thinking about it, they have to fill the stadium for the three days and no one would pay to go just on Sunday if Roger and Stan aren’t playing, so I guess it makes sense.

      • The way it usually goes is that once one team has won, they send in the replacements to play the remaining matches. So I don’t think we’ll to Roger and stan twice in singles :(

    • Hv fun! Send all good luck to Stan and Roger! A GB /Swiss semi wld be fun but still think the Iralisns hv upper hand on home turf! The Kazakhs will fight hard but still see a 5-0 whitewash!

  85. Injured (or tired) and out of this weekend’s Davis Cup so far are: Berdych, Nishikori, Hass, Kolschreiber, Mayer and Gasquet.

    Do you think they’re trying to tell us something about the importance of this event to them?

    • Yah, Berdych has won it twice and the others are pretty much saying “f*ck this sh*t”. too bad the germans aren’t there, would have been some really nice match ups against france :/

  86. Had an amazing time at the Davis Cup today. Amazing, amazing. Just got home exhausted after eating out as well. Will try to get something down about it over the next few days, but just to let you know it was….well, amazing!

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