• Federer aiming for seventh Wimbledon title

    6/23/12 11:24 PM | Ricky Dimon
    Federer aiming for seventh Wimbledon title Roger Federer heads to the All-England Club for the upcoming fortnight as he looks to improve on his record 16 major titles. Federer is in a section of the draw that also includes Janko Tipsarevic, John Isner, Nicolas Mahut, and Fernando Verdasco.

    Roger Federer has won Wimbledon six times during his illustrious career, but he has not made it out of his own quarter in any of the past two years. In 2010 he fell to Tomas Berdych in the quarterfinals and last season he squandered a two-set lead at the same stage to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.

    This time there is no Berdych and no Tsonga in Federer's section. Instead, the Swiss' Top 8 seed is Janko Tipsarevic--who is enjoying a good season but is nowhere near the same threat at the All-England Club as Berdych or Tsonga.

    Of course, Tipsarevic has a long way to go before he can think about being Federer's quarterfinal opponent. The eighth-seeded Serb has to open against an in-form David Nalbandian, who reached the Queen's Club quarterfinal before injuring a linesman and being defaulted. Tipsarevic could face No. 26 seed Mikhail Youzhny in the third round.

    Quarterfinal contenders here also include Wimbledon legends John Isner and Nicolas Mahut. Isner beat Mahut 70-68 in the longest match ever two years ago and they also faced each in round one in 2011 (Isner won in straights). This time it would be a second-round affair, and it should happen with both men heavily favored in their respective openers.

    Mahut is looking better than ever now, having reached the French Open third round for the first time in his career and taking a set off Federer.

    As for Federer, he should have no trouble progressing to at least the quarterfinals. The world No. 3 begins his campaign against Albert Ramos before potential meetings with Michael Llodra and either Julien Benneteau or Gilles Muller. Possible fourth-round opponents for Federer include Fernando Verdasco, Gilles Simon, and Xavier Malisse.

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This is the most important GS for Federer after that Wimby 2009 where he broke Pete record.
This is not just a another GS title for him, this means increasing again the gap with Nadal to 6 (if he don't win more slams Nadal WILL pass him, and he knows that), winning his 7th Wimbledon, tying Pete record, regaining the world number 1, and the best thing, he will surpass the historic record of weeks being number 1.

I mean, way too many important things that will depend only on his racquet. Let's how he handle all of this and if he can rise his horrible recent form.

Emiliano55 , 6/23/12 11:47 PM

Fed was going for his 7th Wimby in 2010 and 2011 as well. I don't see his chances being much higher this year.

Yes, Novak is not the same as in 2011 but he is still a huge force, and Nadal is stronger than last year... may be as hard to beat at Wimby this year as in 2010.

What can not be denied is all that it would mean to Roger to win this. And that his motivation will be there... up to a point: Roger sometimes does fight hard but he has spent his early successful years having a pretty easy time reaching and winning finals and I often don't see him fighting consistently for an entire match the way he would need to achieve the even higher career records that are tantalizing him. Having a huge amount to benefit from a title (especially a slam) has been the case for many very important tournaments over the last 2.5 years and most of the time it has not made a huge difference.

chlorostoma , 6/24/12 6:35 PM

Motivation is a powerful drug, and anything is possible. When Fed lost to Novak at RG I was very disappointment with the match that Roger played - there seemed to be very little fight in him. I was always under the impression from previous meetings between the two that he could beat Novak if he really put his mind to it but that has not happened in their last few matches. However, he does have a very easy draw which should help him.

schatz , 6/24/12 8:08 PM

The very easy "random" draw is key. He avoided ALL of the guys who can trouble him up to the semis: Delpo, berdy, Tsonga.

If he's gonna do it, the stars won't be aligned this well for him again.

It's likely his last chance.

Conspirator , 6/24/12 8:22 PM

how then do you explain Fed's up and down level in the 5 setter he lost against Novak during USO 2010? It was the strangest thing. He was playing better than Novak for more parts of it and if he had the fighting spirit consistently that day he would have taken it in 3 or 4 sets. Some said he did not want to be defeated by Rafa in the final given how Rafa was playing... hard if not impossible to know whether that is true. But still, this was not the only time these last years when Fed did not have the consistency for the length of an entire match even if it was a hugely important one.

It is not impossible for Fed to win Wimby this year. Definitely. But I rate it as far less likely then those who wish for the historical achievements etc. For the romance of that kind of resurgence post-30. And Fed very well may have a slam post 30 yet in one of those tournies when things align in his favor a bit and he musters the kind of consistency you see from Rafa unless Rafa has lost a lot of confidence (eg last year), but the kind of consistency and fight you don't really see in Fed...

To say it again, where Fed's weakness lies in his extremely strong abilities and career achievements... is that long ago - to quote a friend of mine who is a staunch Fed fan - Roger decided he had achieved his personal best in tennis, perfection, and did not have the humility to see that there is no such thing, that you can always improve. Even all those painful matches against Rafa over the years, when the blogosphere was full of people hoping, screaming almost, for Fed to become the kind of person who does everything it takes to adapt to his new challenges and improve, improve, improve..... Fed did only a bit of that. Had Fed been coached to take a Rafa approach to his career: never satisfied, never full of himself, always looking to improve anything, tweak anything that needs tweaking, never drink the coolaid that you've made it and are super-human.... well, in that case his H2H against Rafa would be a lot better and his string of records even more awesome, his legeng that might huger... and his words in interviews a lot more grounded, benevolent to others and humble in the best sense of the word.

But in all his hard work and a bit of luck to grow up able to train for professional tennis, Fed did not have that one luck to have someone raise him to build up this kind of attitude over many years.

chlorostoma , 6/24/12 8:29 PM

^^^^ nicely said!!!

Conspirator , 6/24/12 8:40 PM

Well put chlorostoma. Fed believes the propaganda that he is the greatest player ever, he enjoyed the TMF title whilst Rafa has never succumed to the adulation. He knows in his heart of hearts that he could be better even on clay, he admits to himself that there are aspects of his game that need improving even on a surface he has dominated all of his career.

That's the difference between them and that's why Fed fell to Rafa time and again because he would not accept that Rafa wasn't a one dimensional player.

nadline , 6/24/12 9:13 PM

i agree with u.

abhirf , 6/24/12 9:15 PM

Agree with u @chlorostoma.

abhirf , 6/24/12 9:17 PM

chlorostoma, 6/24/12 8:29 PM

To vindicate what you have just said, here is Rafa's tuppence:

"If you are not able to improve your level of tennis,'' Nadal said, "you are dead.''

Read more: nt-wimbledon/#ixzz1yjyERZB6

rafaisthebest , 6/24/12 9:25 PM

I love Federers tennis but nadline describes the difference between him and Rafa which is why I'm a rafan.

Conspirator , 6/24/12 9:25 PM

I agree with the contents of your post chlorostoma and also with what nadline has said. We all know why we are Rafa fans - it is not only the excitement that he brings on to the court with his fantastic tennis and warrior qualities but also because he is a very special human being.

That match between Fed and Novak in the semis of US Open in 2010 was one of the most exciting matches that I have seen between them. It almost looked like Fed did not go all out in 2 of the 5 sets on purpose. I was in the USA at that time and listening to the commies over there and they seemed to think that he was trying to save some energy this way. I don't know why it was such a strange match really but if that was his plan, the gamble did not pay off.

Anyway, good night all and see you tomorrow for the start of Wimby.

schatz , 6/24/12 9:42 PM

thank you, conspirator, nadline, abhirf and ritb

here is how my friend put it. This is a staunch fed fan but someone who I considered quite wise about anything I've heard him say... :
The problem with Federer is that he had no particular large obstacle in reaching to top of the game, and he grew up without the genuine humility. As a result he drank the kool-aid early on that he had reached perfection. And has not been able to see clearly how distorted that view is. And how distorting the views are when the world idolizes use, glorifies you beyound reason. And herein lies his weakness. (Among his strengths.
With Rafa, my friend said, it was the opposite. He grew up raised with the genuine type of humility. In addition he did have various dificulties. My friend did not mention the struggle to learn to serve at top professional level with his less domininant hand. Or to play an aggressive game when he grew up defensive for having made it to the ATP circuit so young that he _had_ to chase down all the balls he could. My friend talked about having very lousy English while on the international circuit so he could not express himself well in interviews... that alone is something. And other such difficulties. But in essence, that he grew up humble for various reasons and never has lost that attitude of always having a realistic view of himself and the people around him, never drinking any hyperbole. Always looking on where to improve and knowing clearly you have never arrived. (Yes, as you get older some parts of your game can't work the same, e.g. raw speed, but many things that holistically make up the entire package can always be improved: details of strokes, court positioning, reading the other player, strategies against particular players, tactics, scheduling, preparation, the mental side of things, it goes on and on...

There is a book called Talent is Overrated. It is about deliberate practive. Which is what top performers all have done, have to do to get to the top level. It takes enromous amounts of hard work and motivation. It usually starts at a very young age (not always) but it starts with liking something a lot so you practice more. Then getting some facility with it so liking it even more and having the patience to practice even more every day... even hours a day at a young age. Tennis, violin, math, you name it. Being better after a while than most in your immediate town or city... so you are even more motivated. So that when you make into the provincial competitions, or university etc, and are surrounded by many others who also have put it thousands of hours already you are not discouraged by no longer being much better than everyone you have met up to this point. And so you keep practicing a lot, at the highest level of quality: deliberate practice. The final chapter mentions that those who are able to take this to the highest levels compared to their peers often do so at the expense of much else.... they are often (not always) not the nicest in their comportments to others.

In this Fed is the usual product of that process. Nadal the less common one. This is one of the things about Nadal I appreciate very much: he has become and remained such a deeply benevolent and grounded person and with that a great role model given his visibility. In this he reminds me of Bach in music, Euler in math, and many others in other fields: extremely productive in their fields, innovative, among the best, almost never any unnecessary ego, ever nice to others.

I would have so deeply appreciated and admired Fed as the full package had he grown up to develop a similar character. And it is the very same thing that would have afforded him 20+ slams, multiple career slams, and who knows what else.

chlorostoma , 6/24/12 9:59 PM

Lol....self convenient thoughts for worshiping.

KMA , 6/24/12 11:22 PM

chlorostoma , 6/24/12 8:29 PM

chlorostoma , 6/24/12 9:59 PM

Interesting insight from both you and your friend. Thank you for sharing them. Perhaps Fed will yet manage his tennis (slam) matches better... Regardless as a man, and as a tennis player, what matters is he has time after time proven to be a dangerous predator on the tennis court where he can still taste victory. Many FEDfans believe as I believe. the FED is an enigma, and can improve just enough. Let's see what kind of burning fires churn within him this Wimbledon, and Olympics. As the Flame continues to burn strong and the will to win.

sky , 6/25/12 12:23 AM

care to elaborate?
reading your quick five words I get: cognitive dissonance, i.e. inconvenient truths are to be pushed away, twisted, denied, attacked, suppressed or forgotten real fast. So please explain what you mean.

chlorostoma , 6/25/12 12:23 AM

chlorostoma , 6/24/12 8:29 PM

chlorostoma , 6/24/12 9:59 PM

Interesting insight from both you and your friend. Thank you for sharing them. Perhaps Fed will yet manage his tennis (slam) matches better... Regardless as a man, and as a tennis player, what matters is he has time after time proven to be a dangerous predator on the tennis court where he can still taste victory. Many FEDfans believe as I believe. the FED is an enigma, and can improve just enough. Let's see what kind of burning fires churn within him this Wimbledon, and Olympics. As the Flame continues to burn strong and the will to win.

sky , 6/25/12 12:23 AM

Sorry about the double posting folks, lately I have to try signing in 8 to 10 times before I can get through here WHAT A HASSLE! Everything posting wise has slowed down here. Hope no one else is experiencing this.

sky , 6/25/12 1:49 AM

Fed starts on court 1....oh me oh my....*sharp intake of breath*....
sky, no we all are, nightmare :(

deuce , 6/25/12 7:23 AM


We are all experiencing this and have been for the past week or so. It has definitely slowed down because we are trying to log in! Also, many of us have had the double post because of some glitch in the site. It's not your fault, so no need to apologize.

chlorostoma, 6/24/12 8:29 PM,

I really loved reading this post. Thanks! :)

Nativenewyorker , 6/25/12 7:47 AM

Federer looking really sharp so far. Anyway, Ramos is no parameter at all.

Emiliano55 , 6/25/12 5:28 PM

Poor Ramos, unfortunate to draw Fed in the first round, he`s really getting a gubbing here! He has progressed through the rankings this year too.

mojo , 6/25/12 6:09 PM

Nice little warm up for Fed! He wasn`t pushed too hard and has been able to conserve energy for the next round.

mojo , 6/25/12 6:24 PM

Only Ramos' 2nd career match on grass losing his 1st match last week.

Most of his recent success has been on clay challengers.

Hey, he did break Fed's serve. Not bad considering.

Conspirator , 6/25/12 6:26 PM

^^^ Yes well he did but overall it was like a sardine v`s a sea eagle.

mojo , 6/25/12 7:57 PM

Now ya surely didn't expect the draw gods to throw up any sort of a challenge to The Fed in the first round now did ya?

Haha ;)

Conspirator , 6/25/12 8:27 PM

I think Federer would have preferred a likely match with Isner than with Falla.

nadline , 6/25/12 8:41 PM

Conspirator, Ye well that would have been stretching it a bit, lol! Oh dear though its Andy time soon and he`s playing like a donkey right now!

mojo , 6/25/12 9:53 PM

Current ATP-rankings

1. Djokovic 12 500 pts
2. Murray 8 750 pts
3. Federer 8 670 pts
4. Ferrer 6 970 pts
5. Nadal 6 385 pts

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