- Murray Refuses to Surrender
What a comeback from Murray! Very impressive indeed. With the score at 6-3, 6-3, and 5-4 in the favor of the Djoker it looked like this could be a quick straight-set victory for the Djoker. But Murray held serve and played a tremendous game at 5-5 to break the Djoker and then held serve to win the third set against all odds. He then even went a break up in the fourth set. The audacity! The Djoker did get the break back after some impressive defensive play and Murray making another mess of an overhead.
But Murray was taking control of the long baseline rallies by refusing to make an unforced error and displaying tremendous fitness. The rallies were becoming absolutely brutal. This is what clay-court tennis is all about and I feel sorry for the one-dimensional fans who can’t appreciate it. After the Djoker dominated proceedings for the better part of the first three sets, Murray dug extremely deep and found a way back into the match. You have no choice but to respect that.
‘What do I have to do to put this guy away???’
I’ve never been much of a Murray fan and clearly I want the Djoker to win, but it doesn’t mean I can’t respect and admire Murray’s brave refusal to go down. It was all the Djoker from the beginning. He was looking extremely impressive and untouchable, but Murray found a way. Now they are locked up at 3-3 in the fourth set after play got suspended due to bad light and a storm that was predicted. I’m not complaining. Now I have something to watch tomorrow and I think this break is to the Djoker’s advantage.
The momentum had swung in Murray’s favor after the third set. Yes, the Djoker recovered the one break but he was still struggling mightily to hold serve in the second last game. Murray kept winning the extended baseline rallies, and I think this break will allow the Djoker to have a chat with his coaches to try and figure out what he must do to counter Murray’s relentless baseline consistency. I was amazed at his physical stamina and error-free baseline game. He really is a physical freak like Kyrgios said.
- Break In Play Could Help Djokovic to Reset
The Djoker has immense physical and mental strength himself, but I think even he was starting to feel the strain out there, and that the break was a welcome relief for him. Murray was beginning to win the physical battle, and now the Djoker can come back refreshed tomorrow. This, of course, does not mean in any way that he is going to win. I just think the break in play favors him more than Murray. He was probably a bit shell-shocked by Murray’s unbelievable comeback too.
The break just allows him to kind of reset and come back physically fresh. Murray may have outlasted him physically if it went to five sets by the way he appeared. Maybe after a night’s rest the Djoker will deal better with those extended baseline rallies, but he has to think of a solution either way just in case. I thought he should have played more drop shots toward the end where it appeared to me like he was too content with getting into those long baseline exchanges with Murray.
No retreat. No surrender. #300
In the last game that he held serve he played a very good serving game, but even then there were several deuces. His improved serve really saved him from getting broken again there. But it’s not enough. He must look at other ways to shorten the points and break Murray’s rhythm. Whatever the case may be it promises to be an interesting conclusion to the match tomorrow. So far, my predictions are still on course to be correct and I’m sure the Djoker is going to do whatever it takes to finish the match in four sets.
He’d want to get the break right away when play resumes and end it before it goes to five sets and tires him out more before a potential final with Stan. But yeah, he had a very difficult draw from the start and if he finally wins the title this year it is going to be an immense effort. He doesn’t want to go to five sets if he is going to play Stan that’s for sure. Not only for physical rest but also for mental confidence. It’s possible he’d have to play a five-set marathon in the final and he’ll need every ounce of strength and confidence he can get.
- Wawrinka Makes Second Slam Final
Congrats to Stan! What a player. Today he defeated Tsonga 6-3, 6-7(1), 7-6(3), 6-4 to make his second slam final. Dedicated to the people who said he was finished after winning a slam! Yes, he has struggled a lot with consistency since winning the Australian Open last year but he is too talented and powerful to write off. His game just has to ignite for two weeks and he can smash his way through the draw with brute force. Today he was once again too strong for a very competent opponent.
I don’t think Tsonga is in the league of Murray or anything, but this was still another very good win for Stan. Like I thought he exposed Tsonga’s weaker backhand wing. He was a break up in the second set too, but Tsonga broke back and squared things up at a set all. In the all-important third set, he was clutch in the tiebreak and in the fourth set he got another break to close the deal. It’s great to see him in another slam final, but personally I’d still prefer the Djoker gets it done.
Back with a vengeance
I just think he deserves it after all the bad luck he’s had at the French and now finally beating the clay GOAT after suffering all those brutal losses. But it seems the odds are still stacked against him with the most difficult draw of everyone this year. To beat Nadal, Murray, and Stan in succession to win the tournament is near impossible. If anyone can do it it’s him, but he has a lot of work left. As for Stan, he’d be hoping it goes to five sets tomorrow to give him an added edge.
Playing the first semi is already a little edge and now the second semi has been delayed until tomorrow too. For this reason, it is even more important that the Djoker gets it done in four tomorrow. Before today, the Djoker was the favorite on paper against Murray but actually the more you lose to a player the more likely it becomes that you will finally get that elusive win. So yes Murray can certainly still win it, but I’d like to believe the Djoker can get it done in four and we can have an epic Djoka final.
I’d be interested to hear your thoughts.
The is in your court.