Hey, folks. I don’t have much time, but I feel like there are a few important things to say after Toronto so I will see how far I can get. First of all congrats to Tsonga on a superb week and winning his second Masters title. He is too good a player to have the same amount of Masters titles as Ferrer. It’s good for tennis when an attacking player like him wins a big title. To win the title, he beat Djokovic, Murray, Dimitrov, and Roger among others, showing that when he is on his game he can beat anyone. As for Roger yes, it was disappointing that he lost in yet another Masters final. But it was also disappointing how the tournament scheduled his matches. He was always playing the last match of the day and getting in bed at ridiculous times. The night before the final he got in bed at 3:30 am for instance and then the final was played at 3:00 pm to boot.
No wonder Roger was looking flat in the final. Of course, the three setters against Cilic and Ferrer didn’t help, but I feel like the scheduling was just a bit harsh for Roger. Then he had his birthday after the Cilic match which ended right before midnight if I recall correctly. I think they could have let him play the first semi against Lopez at least. That way at least for the final, he could have gotten some more rest. Not trying to make excuses, but I think all these factors combined to leave Roger flat in the final. I couldn’t watch the match but from watching the highlights and from what I could gather from my reliable sources Roger’s ground game was basically absent. Yet he was still able to make life difficult for Tsonga. I think that is a positive in itself. The other positive was his net game where Roger won 27/33 points.
That is something that has really improved of late under Edberg. The 37 unforced errors tells the story about the ground game and even Roger’s serve wasn’t that great. The first serve percentage was good but he only served one ace in the first set and four double faults is unusual for Roger. Also, Roger created not a single break point? I think that pretty much sums it up. But again I want to say that Roger should probably have closed out Cilic in straight sets when he had all those match point at 5-4 in the second set. Maybe he could have beaten Ferrer in straight sets too. Roger is now 2-5 in finals for 2014, losing a slam final, three Masters finals, and a 250 final, while winning a 250 and 500 final. A pretty poor record in finals, but lets gets some perspective here. Roger is 33 years old and he will be feeling the long matches in his body more than ever.
He has actually been playing very well this year. I just feel like he has been a bit unlucky on a couple of occasions. Certainly in Toronto the schedule didn’t help him. I feel like Roger has been playing well all year but hasn’t been rewarded. But his luck is bound to turn around if he keeps persisting, and you can be sure that he will. That is just Roger. He doesn’t let temporary setbacks deter him. He just keeps pushing forward until he succeeds. Now that is a stupendous statement and how all success is achieved. I believe Roger will keep pushing forward and it must pay off sooner rather than later. Maybe it will pay off in Cincy. Maybe at the US Open. Or maybe at the Masters Cup. Preferably at Cincy since that will give him that winning feeling just before the big one. I’m sure Roger will feel the effects of Toronto on his body, but he will at least have a couple of days to rest now.
Tough old day at the office
And he will be confident after his showing in Toronto. The draw is pretty tough, but Roger has a superb record at Cincy. His draw is Pospisil/Stepanek, Bautista-Agut/Monfils, Murray/Isner, Raonic/Berdych, and Djokovic/Wawrinka. Hopefully, Roger can get his matches done in a more efficient manner in Cincy where the courts are pretty fast. He can really put his new found net game to good use there. To arrive pretty fresh in the final Roger would probably need to win three of his first four matches in straight sets, which is a tough ask with his draw. We will just have to see how things play out. The draw is just a rough estimate of who Roger could face anyway. But I stick by what I said. I think Roger will be rewarded somewhere. He may not be rewarded in Cincy, but then he could win the US Open.
I think some fans get too negative because of expectations. At this stage of Roger’s career, he has nothing left to prove and some of these expectations from fans are really absurd. To make seven finals at this stage of his career, one of which was a slam final which he came awfully close to winning, is a fantastic performance. But, of course, Fedfans are spoiled and will never be satisfied. Eric was right when he asked people if they knew anything about tennis. Tennis is an awfully competitive and physical sport and what Roger is doing at his age is nothing short of astounding. That’s why I was hardly disappointed after the Wimbledon final. I was just amazed at how well Roger played to come back in the fourth set and force a decider. That in itself was the reward for me. Can Roger win the US Open?
Roger happy with his week, as he should be
We would all like to see Roger win #18 like a fairy tale, but there is no guarantee. Annacone and some of the ex-greats seem very sure that Roger will win another slam. I am not as sure as them, but I’m not gonna count out his chances. In a sense, you feel like Wimbledon was his last big chance but maybe everything will come together for Roger at the US Open and he wins #18 there. You just can’t count the possibility out. Already Nadal is having injury problems and Djokovic is struggling with his form. If Roger can get some quick wins in the first week and his draw works out in the second week you never know what could happen. Like I said his luck is bound to turn at some point, and it could be in New York. He doesn’t necessarily have to win Cincy to have a shot in New York either.
Well for once I was able to complete a full post after I could finally get medicine at the pharmacy yesterday. I think Toronto was another very positive week for Roger. He just lacks that one big title which I’m sure will happen from now until the end of the year. So in a way I am more excited than ever. Today I am going to Bangkok after which I will go to Laos to get my work permit for Thailand. So I have a bit of traveling to do in the next few days. I will do my best to watch tennis and do some posts, but I can’t promise anything. I should be done with it all on Friday so I will definitely be able to blog over the weekend. I’m sorry for all the interruptions of late but thanks for understanding and keeping the comments coming. Hopefully, the scheduling will be a little friendlier to Roger in Cincy and he can finally claim his first Masters of the year!