I’m not able to watch Federer this week at the Gerry Weber Open since my Internet connection isn’t fast enough to view it on live stream. So I won’t be able to do as much analysis as usual, but at least I am able to catch some highlights of the match on the Halle website which you can find below. The grass court GOAT looked very happy to be back on his favorite surface.
Q: Are you happy to be back on grass?
FEDERER: Sure, it’s always nice. I think that any surface change actually has something nice about it. Grass is the most special one because we only play one month on it. So, every day you get a chance to play on this surface is somewhat a special day, because it’s so rare and it’s so different to the other ones. I feel it’s something you want to savour as long as you are on the surface.
The only time he looked in trouble was when he faced two break points in the second game. He served himself out of trouble there with two big serves and an ace. He was experimenting early on, but that seemed to last only until the ninth game when he broke serve. At 5-4 he defended one more break point and took the first set 6-4 after some good reflex volleys at the net on set point. In the second set Roger broke right away again to take a 2-0 lead, after an incredible point where Nieminen dived after the ball twice. That was more or less the end of Nieminen who has never won a set against the GOAT. Roger won the second set 6-4 with his eighth ace. He also served a 223 kph ace in the last game, which may be his fastest serve ever. Wikipedia claims that his fastest serve is 221 kph, so this could well be his fastest.
So it looks like Roger is already putting the disappointment of losing the number one ranking and semi-final streak behind him, and feels very happy being back on his favorite surface. That is something you have to admire about the GOAT; his ability to put disappointments behind him. He doesn’t dwell on them much. I’ve been pretty disappointed with the repercussions of Roger’s result at the French Open, but it’s not like he played badly against Soderling. As long as he carries on the decent form he showed in Madrid and at Roland Garros, he should do well on the grass. I don’t care how well Nadal is playing. Grass is still Federer’s throne and he only lost it to Nadal in 2008 because he had a bad year overall. Forget all the Rafahype, R0ger is the favorite to win Halle and Wimbledon. Onwards and upwards.
May the Fedforce be with you.
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