I’m gonna try to make this brief as I want to go catch some of the Nadal/Kyrgios match, even though I’m convinced Nadal will win in straight sets. This match captured my imagination a bit more than the Giraldo match as Roger had some unfinished business with Robredo from the US Open last year. That was maybe his worst result from last year and was a turning point as well. Roger has come a long way since that match and today he routined Robredo 6-1, 6-4, 6-4, reversing that US Open result in the process and getting his revenge. I predicted Roger would destroy Robredo if he played anywhere near his best, and he did play near his best. It was not absolute vintage Roger but still more than good enough to take care of Robredo. Roger cruised through the first set and delivered the bread stick.
That said he was poor on break point conversion from the start, ending the first set with 2/6 break points converted. In the second set, Roger should have broken again at 3-1 but missed an easy lob long with Robredo right on top of the net. But Roger held on to his one break to win the second set. In the third set, Robredo was looking more threatening and Roger was missing some forehands. Robredo was getting closer to Roger as the match progressed, but Roger made up for his missed break in the second set by breaking Robredo at 3-3. At 5-4 Roger struggled to serve out the match as Robredo actually had a break point and threatened to be the first player to break Roger’s serve in the tournament, but fortunately Roger held on and avoided any more drama. And avoiding drama is exactly what Roger has been able to do this year compared to last year.
The winner to unforced error ratio has been exceptional at Wimbledon
I was somewhat disappointed that Roger did not break in the second set when he should have, and that his break point conversion ratio was poor. But like I said he made up for it when he broke Robredo again in the third set when Robredo was starting to look much more threatening. So in the end I would say it was a very satisfactory performance after what happened last year at the US Open. I knew Roger should straight set Robredo if he played like he did throughout this tournament, but you never know when a slump could occur, and it still had to be done. I don’t think Roger will slump during this Wimbledon. I don’t want to jinx him or anything, but he has looked very solid and at home at Wimbledon this year, which is why I said in my last post that he is turning back the clock.
It is looking like the old days where Roger dominated at Wimbledon and it’s a great sight to behold. Even with Roger at age 32 we Fedfans are getting treated royally. What a privilege it is to be a Fedfan! The match stats for Roger was not as good as in his last two matches but still very respectable. The break point conversion rate was the only thing that was poor, but the thing that I was most happy about in this match was Roger’s intent to approach the net again. I had some strong words to say about it in my last post and it feels like Roger listened. I felt it was crucial that he controlled the net against Robredo at least and he did just that. 41 net approaches is a lot over three sets on this grass, and Roger had a good success rate too. I didn’t feel like Roger was necessarily at his best, but I was delighted to see that he showed real urgency to approach the net.
Thanks for listening!
Back to yesterday’s action and both Murray and Djokovic had straight set wins, all be it not having it all their own way. I have not always had the most positive things to say about my countryman Anderson as a tennis player, but I think he can feel very proud about being at a career high #18, making his deepest run at Wimbledon yet this year, and putting up a brave performance against home favorite Murray on center court. Tsonga managed almost exactly the same score line against Djokovic and Djokovic hit a ridiculous return winner on match point. Ring a bell? Djokovic may have the best return of serve in history, but I didn’t particularly appreciate his reaction after he hit that staggering return. Tsonga also challenged the call, which made Djokovic look stupid for the way he reacted.
That didn’t stop him from going over the top again after it was called good. It’s easier to understand Roger’s dislike of him when he does things like that. But it was an impressive way to end the match and he will now face Cilic who has been a different player since hiring Ivanisevic as his coach. He straight-setted Chardy and I can see him take a set again against Djokovic like at the French Open. Then we also have the blockbuster quarter-final between Murray and Dimitrov which I hoped for after Dimitrov continued to impress with a straight set win over Mayer. Roger now plays Stan who had an impressive straight-set win over Lopez. Sadly Stan has to play for a third day in a row now after being screwed over by Wimbledon and it will probably cost him the match. Now we are just waiting to see who will fill up the final two quarterfinal spots…