Federer Destroys Coric to Make 9th Dubai Final

I didn’t make a post about Roger’s quarter final match against Gasquet because there was nothing to post about. He won the first set 6-1 and then Gasquet withdrew. There was some other big news however which was that 18-year old Borna Coric had another big four win when he destroyed Murray 6-1, 6-3. The other big four win was over Nadal last year in Basel of course. This young player is the real deal and a future #1 as far as my opinion goes. He got into the main draw as a lucky loser after losing in the final qualifying round to world #315 Martin and made full use of his luck by going all the way to the semis. He got man handled 6-2, 6-1 by Roger but he had done his job. He would have been tired after five matches and losing to Roger is no shame.

Along with Kyrgios and Thiem Coric is the future of tennis. The Dimitrov, Raonic, and Nishikori generation has been a bit of a disappointment but the next generation seems very promising. It actually looked like Coric could pose a real threat to Roger but he wasn’t ready yet. Roger did enough not to let Coric into the match, but only just. At times he looked uncomfortable against the youngster. He also made more unforced errors than he hit winners. The main thing that I was impressed with about Coric in Dubai was his physical and mental maturity. He plays a bit like Djokovic with solid ground strokes and good movement, but he probably needs to work on making his serve and forehand bigger weapons.

Old enough to be Coric’s dad? Lol.

Roger will play Djokovic in the final which is the final we have all been hoping for. It is a classic rivalry which have produced many classic matches. Djokovic had a tough test from Birdshit in the semis though which he survived 6-0, 5-7, 6-4. Birdshit played as well as he could but of course he lacks the X factor which you need to win the big matches and titles. But I don’t want to take anything away from Djokovic who showed once again why he is easily the best player in the world right now and why he will win many more slams. That said, you wouldn’t count Roger out to upset him in the final. He already showed he can do it in Shanghai and these courts are at least as fast as Shanghai, if not faster.

Roger also defeated Djokovic last year in Dubai, so he may even be the favorite. The only problem for him is that he hasn’t been tested at all this week, while Djokovic came through a very tough test against Birdshit yesterday. This will also be Roger’s ninth final in Dubai and if he wins it it will be his seventh title. But even if he loses the good news is that Roger 4.0 have stuck around this week, although the true test will be when he faces adversity again. Then we will see if he still has the clutch factor. As for Nadal he defeated Delbonis 6-1, 6-1 in Buenos Aires which will give him a lot of confidence. Nadal is still an uncertainty at this point and playing in another tournament so there is no need for Roger to worry about him.

But I’d still like to see a Fedal meeting in the near future which we have been waiting for for a long time now. I also want to find out if Roger 4.0 sticks around if Nadal rises again, because Nadal seems to be in Roger’s head and when he is dominating Roger usually slumps. I still can’t be 100% sure about what happened in Melbourne and I wana see if Fed 4.0 is mentally strong enough to withstand Nadal. But if Nadal fails to win the French this year we may never find out. Clearly I believe Nadal is in Roger’s head and I’d like Roger to exorcise that demon before it is all said and done, but he may never get the chance. But don’t expect Nadal to go down without a fight. Can’t wait for tonight’s final!



Federer Into Dubai Quarter Finals After Trademark Verdasco Collapse

Only Verdasco is capable of going 4-1 up and then losing 20 straight points to drop the first set 4-6. That is why is nickname is Fiasco. That must be some kind of record because in my entire tennis watching career I have never seen that happen. No doubt Roger played some terrific tennis himself, but losing 20 straight points is very hard to do against anyone no matter how well they are playing. Especially if you were bossing the match until 4-1. Just unbelievable. This match epitomized everything Verdasco is about. In the first five games he was dominating someone who is by many considered to be the GOAT. Yet from there on he just inexplicably falls apart completely. As far as talent goes he has enough to be the GOAT himself.

But mentally he is probably the weakest player on the entire ATP Tour. He’s got stiff competition from guys like Gasquet, Anderson, and Berdych, but Verdasco may be at the top of that list. He is also the most talented of all those players. The first five games were just unbelievable to watch. Even as a Fedfan I enjoyed it. In the second set Verdasco got broken in the opening game again but then broke right back and held serve to take a 2-1 lead. I was kind of happy because I wanted to see a good match, but Verdasco just disappeared yet again and only won one more game in the match. It was nice to see Roger playing well again and I am definitely not complaining, but it is sad to see a talent like Verdasco’s go to waste like that.

Who would ever forget that semi-final epic he played against Nadal in Melbourne where he put up a better score than Roger in the fifth set. And yet that is still the best result of his entire career. With the amount of talent he has the sky is the limit, but he is just the biggest nutcase I have ever seen on the professional tour. But enough of Verdasco. Roger’s good form from the first round continued right on which was good to see. He now plays against another choker Gasquet who he leads 13-2 in the head-to-head. Gasquet had a good win himself over Bautista Agut who he beat 8-6 in the third set breaker. Having seen Roger’s form I just can’t see Gasquet beating him, but we will see. Murray also had an impressive 6-0, 6-2 win over Sousa.


He now plays rising star Coric who made the best of the fact that he got into the main draw as a lucky loser. That should be interesting but surely Murray will win. I’d love to see a Fedray semi anyway after what happened in London. In the top half Djokovic is still looking like the man to beat after destroying Golubev. In Buenos Aires Nadal also progressed after bageling an Argentine dirt baller and looks good for the title for now. Finally in Acapulco third seed Dimitrov was upset by Harrison as he got bageled in the final set and did another epic racquet smash which I posted in the comments of my last post. So in the end Roger is still looking in fine form and it looks like he will make at least semis here!



Federer Makes Confident Start in Dubai After Month Break

Well hello there Fed 4.0, nice to see you didn’t leave us. I didn’t know quite what to expect from Roger after the loss to Seppi in Melbourne, and I feared we might have seen the end of Roger 4.0. But judging from his match against Youzhny at least, Roger 4.0 didn’t go anywhere. That is great news and I am more inclined to believe that the loss in Melbourne was just due to tiredness after this performance, although I’m not completely sold on that idea just yet. My theory was that Nadal is in Roger’s head and of course Nadal lost to Berdych in Melbourne and consequently lost to Fognini in Rio, after cramping for the first time in his career. To me it seems that Nadal is so much in Roger’s sub-conscious that whenever he rises then Roger tends to slump. And since Nadal has not exactly risen this year(not yet anyway), there is no need for Roger to worry about him.

Also they are on different continents right now. Nadal’s loss to Fognini was pretty big news, but I have already said it doesn’t mean much to me until I see what happens in Buenos Aires. That is an ATP 250 event unlike Rio which was an ATP 500 event, and if he fails to win there then I see real reason for concern for Nadal(or excitement if you are a Fedfan). But until then I wouldn’t get too excited. And even if he doesn’t win Buenos Aires then the European clay swing is still ahead. I’d like to see Nadal fall as much as anyone here but I have been proven wrong too many times by him to just write him off. He is just too dangerous. I will only truly get excited if he fails to defend the French Open, because that is the tournament that he owns and where he will be very difficult to beat even on one leg. He can fail to win any event up until the French and still win it.

I liked the shoes but not so much the orange shirt

It is one thing to beat Nadal on clay over the best of three sets but another to beat him over five sets, as Roger and Dokovic in particular have painfully found out. Poor Djokovic have beaten Nadal in four clay finals and have been a break up in the fifth set at the French, and yet he is 0-6 against Nadal in the French capitol. You almost get the feeling that if Nadal is ever going to lose at the French again it won’t be against Djokovic or Roger. I actually think he is going to be vulnerable in the early rounds at the French this year and he could very well be ranked outside the top four, in which case he will probably be in Roger’s quarter again. But he could also be in Nishikori’s quarter which would be a tough match for Nadal. Anyway that is just speculation and we will see how things pan out. I was just happy to see how well Roger was playing against Youznhy. Until 3-3 in the first set there was some rust but then Roger pulled away.

Youzhny was also playing quite well up until that point and at one stage I wondered if the saying ‘No one defeats Youzhny 16 times in a row’ would become true. But Roger quickly found his range and then it was all over. This is now fast becoming another very lopsided head-to-head. Roger now plays the winner of Garcia-Lopez and Verdasco who plays after the Djokovic/Pospisil match. Roger clearly loves to play on the faster Dubai courts and I am already feeling a lot better about his chances. As long as Fed 4.0 sticks around he may even win a seventh title here, but lets take it one match at a time. What Nadal does in South-America may even be felt all the way across the Atlantic ocean. Like I said I don’t think Nadal will be panicking just yet. He already said in an article that he doesn’t know if the best Nadal will be back but we know when he says that then the best Nadal will probably be back.

Roger lost his doubles match today with Lammer vs (2)Tacau/Rojer 6-4, 7-6(12)

But he also said that it is now is the moment to make up for lost time. And that is enough to make any Fedfan nervous. Nadal knows he only needs to win Buenos Aires to get a big boost of confidence, and the loss to Fognini won’t be enough to really put him on the back foot. So I think this week is pretty key for Fedal actually. If Nadal wins Buenos Aires it will boost his confidence even though it is just a 250. It is all about getting that wining feeling back. As for Roger he will want to keep up the form he showed against Youzhny without stumbling. There is still no guarantee that he will keep that kind of form up. If he loses in the semis for instance and Nadal wins Buenos Aires then there could already occur a shift in the Fedal balance. For Roger’s sake I hope Nadal doesn’t win Buenos Aires and that he himself makes at least the final of Dubai. That would be a good way to head into the North-American and clay swings.

Looking forward to an interesting week of tennis!




Presser: http://www.asapsports.com/show_interview.php?id=106560

Interesting words about the Davis Cup. I can sort of understand his frustration. Personally I never cared much for Davis Cup and I never quite understood why it seemed so important to him. So I find it kind of strange how he seemed so passionate about it and now he treats it with a kind of disdain.