Hey, guys. Not the result we wanted in the end but how are we gonna deal with it? I must say at first I wasn’t dealing very well with it. I watched the first semi between Djokovic and Nishikori and couldn’t believe what I was witnessing. Then it started to rain exactly as Roger was about to step on the court and again I couldn’t believe what I was witnessing. I then decided to go to bed as it was already 2:25 am here and my health had not been at its best of late. I then woke up the next morning seeing that Roger got completely outplayed 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 by Cilic. So clearly, the Monfils match was not his one bad match and he can deem himself lucky that he even made semis. That match just wasn’t convincing at all. I couldn’t make a post about it, but basically Roger was asleep in the first two sets and had that resigned look about him again.
When he was match points down I thought he would lose for sure but somehow he escaped to fight one more day. On the first match point he actually had a drive volley which he should have hit for a winner but he gave Monfils another look, and was lucky it was Monfils because a better player would have made the pass. His lack of confidence was once again very evident in that match. Just the way he came out having chances to break Monfils in the second game and starting to waste breakpoints again. There was just no urgency whatsoever. He basically just allowed Monfils to win the first two sets, and only when he was dangling off the edge of the cliff did he wake up. That is not how you win slams. I guess Roger forgot how to do it along the way. All the emotional and physical effort it took to get through that match cost him against Cilic then.
He was flat and Cilic just smoked him. Of course Cilic was in the zone but getting hit off the court like that was a big statement, or anti-statement if you will. It really showed me that Roger’s slam winning days are counted, bar a miracle. You can say, but Sampras was playing much worse than Roger before he won his last slam, but they are two different players with different situations. Sampras basically went through a two-year period where he was really struggling. Big time. I think in that time he gathered the strength to make one last big run at a slam and then he quit tennis right there and then. This is not the case with Roger. He is slowly(and painfully at times) fading away. He is still playing at a high level(at least this year) but he can’t cross the finish line anymore. He just lacks the edge to bag that final slam.
A brave face
I think Wimbledon this year was his last best shot at a slam, although next year at Wimbledon he may have an outside chance. I definitely won’t get my hopes up though. At first this loss hit me hard because I had gotten my hopes up after Wimbledon. I felt Roger had played really well but that the stars didn’t align for him there. Then he had great results at Toronto and Cincy and I got my hopes up even higher. And when the US Open draw came out I was convinced that this was Roger’s time. Even after the Monfils match I thought Roger had a great chance because Cilic had taken care of one of his two bogeymen in Berdych. And then Nishikori beats Djokovic in the first semi to top it all off. So you can imagine I wasn’t exactly ecstatic when I woke up this morning and saw that Roger got dumped out of the US Open in straight sets by Cilic.
But at least I had gone to sleep and missed the slaughter. Then I saw Roger said in his presser that #18 wouldn’t make him any happier as a person if he won it, and I got even more annoyed. I certainly felt it would make me happier if he won it, so it made me wonder why I am feeling depressed over something that wouldn’t make him happier. It seemed absurd. But then I remembered what I said after he won Cincy about not having any more expectations for the rest of the year. I allowed myself to have expectations again! How easy it is to fall into that trap. It happens without you even realizing. But when I thought about it objectively and realized that 17 slams is a great number I started feeling better. Roger is totally right that another slam shouldn’t make him happier. But the thing is we as fans are greedy and spoiled and we always want more more more.
So really we only have ourselves to blame if we are hurt and depressed over a loss like that. We should be more grateful for what we have already received rather than always asking for more. And I am saying that as someone who made the mistake myself. The loss today hurt. I was depressed for the first half of the day and could hardly muster the energy to go for a run. I think what we have to take out of this is that 17 slams is terrific and anything else would have been a bonus. I myself knew this. I said many times I am not sure where another slam would come from and that it could or could not happen. Yet here I am, hurt again by the fact that it did not happen. Go figure. I guess it’s just normal, but I definitely want to avoid it in the future. So from here on I take the stance that Roger’s slam winning days are officially behind it bar a miracle.
I have no expectations whatsoever. It hurts to even say that, but it is the right and normal outlook to have. My consolation is this blog and the privilege of sharing this experience with all of you. I am actually amazed at the kind of people I have attracted to this blog. You, people, are really caring, respectful, and supportive. I’m not sure I deserve that, but I am proud of this blog anyway. Actually lately I have realized that I haven’t really worked as hard on this blog as I could have, and I was hoping Roger could win the US Open so that my blog could still go strong for a long time. So that was disappointing too. Not saying I’m gonna quit blogging now, but if Roger won the US Open it would have reset things in a way. But maybe then I would have started hoping for #19 and would have gotten hurt again if he didn’t get it.
So better now get it out of the way and not having any more expectations in the future. From here on I just want to appreciate much more what I already have with this blog and what Roger have already given us. There are still good things ahead. I think I just need some more time to get over this. There is Davis Cup ahead this weekend and then of course the indoor season. I can see the Swiss possibly winning the Davis Cup this year at long last which would be another great achievement for Roger in his already incredible resume. I think he can also do very well in the indoor season and win at least one more title. I wouldn’t be surprised if he wins another Masters Cup either. But for now I just gotta get away from tennis for a while. This was a tough one to swallow.