Switzerland into Davis Cup Final Thanks to Dependable Federer

Hey folks. I hope you are well. It’s been a while since Roger’s disappointing loss in the US Open semis to Cilic and I am overall very happy with Roger’s year so far. He was very solid in the slams and won three other important titles. Obviously all the fans were hoping for #18 but it wasn’t to be, and yet there is an awful lot to be grateful for as a Fedfan. I mean at age 33 Roger is having a terrific year and the best may be yet to come. Roger’s favorite indoor season is still ahead and then of course the Davis Cup final, which the Swiss qualified for for the first time in 22 years when they defeated Italy yesterday. I was making updates since Friday on Facebook when they began and I hope you all can join us there soon. I have neglected my Facebook page in the past but it is a very useful platform to use together with my blog for updates between posts, live chatting during matches, and much more.

I want to grow my Facebook page so please like, comment, and share. On Friday Roger was first up in the reverse singles against Bolleli as the Swiss number one(good to see!) and he won 7-6(5), 6-4, 6-4. Stan then put the Swiss in the driver’s seat at 2-0 when he destroyed Fognini 6-2, 6-3, 6-2. In the doubles on Saturday I was able to watch just a little bit and there was no Roger as he apparently asked Luthi to sit out the doubles. At first it looked like Stan and Chiudinelli would get the job done and Chiudinelli played some good tennis, but in the end his lack of experience showed as he played a poor fifth set and the Italians pulled the tie back to 1-2. I’m sure the Swiss could have made it 3-0 if Roger played doubles, but I was kind of happy that the Swiss lost the doubles because it gave Roger the opportunity to be the hero again.

I say again because I’m sure you would remember how he saved the Swiss against Kazakhstan in April. On that occasion he had to win the deciding rubber against Golubev which he did in straight sets. This time it was not the deciding rubber but Roger was the one who clinched it for the Swiss and he was the only team member who did not lose a match. He deserved to be the hero after the way he saved the Swiss in April anyway. He defeated the Italian number one Fognini 6-2, 6-3, 7-6(4) in the fourth rubber to clinch the tie for the Swiss. My connection was too poor to watch again but I caught the highlights of course and it seems Fognini played better with every set, so it is a good thing Roger closed it out in the final set tie break. Something that really caught my eye in the highlights was Roger’s forehand.

Mr. Dependable 

Since I didn’t watch the match it is hard to say for sure but he sure seemed to strike his forehand really well. That is maybe the one shot that has not been at its best since Roger started playing with his new racquet so that was nice to see. Hopefully it is a sign of what is to come and that Roger found his forehand again. It is a key shot looking forward to the indoor season, Davis Cup Final, and Australian Open next year. We know Roger’s serve is his best shot, and when he has his best forehand to back it up he is very difficult to stop. I think there is a very exciting period ahead now. First the indoor season where Roger always does well. Even last year when he had that very challenging year he still did well in the indoor season, and used it to start momentum for a much more successful 2014.

He now has an opportunity to do the same going into the Davis Cup final and Australian Open next year. Remember my last post where Roger said he is very close to winning a slam(I still haven’t verified whether he really said that but I think there is a good chance)? I’m not trying to create expectations again. Seriously. But it does make you think about Australia and what a Davis Cup victory could do for his confidence. Maybe Roger needed more time to get back to his best after the big low that was 2013? And if that is the case then the indoor season and Davis Cup final could provide the ideal opportunity for him to do just that. No surface is as friendly to Roger’s game as indoors and Roger usually peaks at the end of the season.

Remember what happened in 2008 when Roger had that tough time due to mono and he then won the Olympic gold with Stan in doubles? That inspired and propelled him to winning a fifth US Open later that year. Imagine what a Davis Cup title could do for him. Now I realize I am looking way ahead again here and creating expectations among many a Fedfan with what I’m saying, but I plead not guilty. I have already said I don’t expect Roger to win another slam. Roger has a great record Down Under but the speed of the surface doesn’t really favor him and Djokovic and Nadal remain very difficult to beat there. I just think if the Swiss wins the Davis Cup it will inspire Roger a lot, and I never said Roger can not win another slam. I just said I don’t expect it.

:D

It is up to every Fedfan what kind of expectations they have because we all deal differently with Roger not meeting our expectations. And lets face it, the Swiss are still far from winning the Davis Cup. They will play the French in France in the week right after the Masters Cup. The French just made very short work of the Czechs and they have great depth. The tie will be played indoors but the surface still has to be decided upon by the French. They may choose clay seeing that Roger’s best surface may be indoor hard, but it’s not like Roger and Stan can’t play on clay. The likes of Tsonga and Monfils will be a handful that’s for sure, no matter what the surface. It is the #3 and #4 in the world up against the #11 and #18, so on paper the Swiss will be the favorites.

But this is Davis Cup and that pretty much goes out the window when you are playing away. The crowd will be crazy and Roger and Stan will have to have very cool heads. We know Roger is used to these situations but Stan can sometimes be a hot head. There Roger’s support on the side will also play a role to keep Stan calm. And I assume they will play Fedrinka in the doubles, but you can’t be sure until match day like we saw against Italy. It is all very exciting and it keeps the off season shorter too. How great is it to be a Fedfan?! I know I say that often but it can’t be helped. Let me just make it clear that I don’t rate the Davis Cup very highly as individual achievement goes because it is a team competition, but I do think it can possibly propel Roger to slam success again.

And with everything Roger has achieved in the sport it will indeed make his resume that much more complete!

 

Highlights:

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Posted in Davis Cup.

43 Comments

  1. Ru-an?

    What do you think about Roger playing Shanghai? Obviously he wants to play there as it is an awesome venue BUT he’s played an aweful lot of matches as of late. The body may need rest, especially if he’s gonna make a push at the WTF and Davis Cup.

    Thoughts?

    [Reply]

    Monfed Reply:

    Good point, Vily. I hope he rests, he’s playing a full indoor season plus playing DC as well. I want Fed to be fit for 2015 and don’t want a repeat of 2013!

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    He won’t play a full indoor season Monfed. See the link I posted. I think he will skip Shanghai and play the rest. The schedule should be Basel, Paris, WTF, and DC. That should provide plenty of rest, even if he makes the final of the first three.

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    I think he should skip Shanghai Vily. He already hinted that he will do that here. He should play Basel, Paris, WTF, and DC. No need to travel all the way to Shanghai for one tourney. Also note what he said about the Swiss playing the French away in DC.

    [Reply]

    Vily Reply:

    That could be one option. Depending on whether the French decide to play the Final in Bercy or not, things could change. If the French decide indoors clay and against Bercy, a smart tactic would be:

    Play Shanghai
    1 Week Off
    Play Basel
    2 Weeks Off
    WTF
    Davis Cup

    But he’s got SF to defend in Paris so:

    Rest now
    Play Basel
    Play Paris 1000
    1 Week Off
    WTF
    Davis Cup

    Both have their pluses and minuses.

    In the first scenario, breaks are spread out with a bit of a nice break going into a huge tournament.

    In the second scenario, Roger rests fully now but then has to basically play full schedule for 1 month.

    My worry is that just like at the US Open, Roger began to burn out towards the end and that ultimately cost him.

    So I don’t know. There are still 2 weeks off until Shanghai. If he somehow makes a lot of points there, he can take off Bercy of the table unless of course the French pick it and then he’ll need a practice match or two…

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    You forgot there are 4 days off between the WTF and DC too. I know he has to go to France to practice but there are no matches in that time. So if he skips Shanghai which gives him a long break then he still has 2 breaks in effect which is more than enough. No need to travel all the way to the East and changing time zones. I’m pretty sure this is the schedule he’ll take but we will find out.

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    I will make a post as soon as we know Roger’s schedule. In the mean time you can join our discussion on FB https://www.facebook.com/TheGOATblog

    [Reply]

  2. Amazing to be a Fed fan,Ruan! He’s given us so much and keeps giving us something new,what more can we ask for? Winning DC could propel Fed to greater things like what it did to Nole in 2011 and who knows maybe #18 could come when we least expect it?
    So I’m loving this fighter Fed. Thanks again for this post! Goodluck for DC final!

    [Reply]

  3. FINALLY!! FINALLY!! FINALLY!! FINALLY!! FINALLY!!

    Finally I am able to comment from my work!!! Thank God Ru-an, I thought someone put a spell on me, because first I could not comment from home, since almost a month I cannot comment from my work too. But now I see I have a small opening, so I am taking it :-)
    Unfortunately I have to work now, but I will comment soon (if possible!!!).

    Do not forget me guys :-) Great posts Ru-an, agree with you on everything, except one thing. Unlike you, I DO believe Roger will win slams. Will not be easy. AT ALL. He has to win his matches in the first week more quicker and the draw has to be kind or has to open up, but as long as he is playing (and I honestly see him playing till he is 40), he will win slams. I don’t believe for a second that he will retire in or after 2016. If the likes (no offence to them) of Haas, Hewitt, Stepanek, etc can play after 35, don’t you think our Goat won’t?? He loves the attention he gets WAY WAY TOO much. Unless someone tops him in that, he will keep playing. With having 4 kids, it doesn’t stop him from going across the world to play tours. Even if that means homeschooling, taking his kids, family, nanny’s, etc along over the world.

    By the way, cannot wait to see how having a baby will effect Novak. Maybe now, Jelena, his parents and he will have more respect for Mirka and Roger knowing how they do it.

    By the way, could there be another ending to the DC than AGAIN Roger saving them??

    Will comment later. See you all. DON’T FORGET ME SWEET PEOPLE :-)

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    Haven’t forgotten you Katyani. Been wondering where you are. Strange that you can’t comment from home or work. I think there were openings in the draw at Wimby and the USO but Roger was not good enough to take it. That said, he may not be quite back to his best yet after 2013 so I am waiting to see what happens for the rest of this year and the beginning of 2015 :-)

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    Check out this cool video of the GOAT someone sent me guys!
    http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=xTMCyyFOkOw

    [Reply]

  4. Hey guys, while most of the players end of the year will play exho in India (Tennis IPL League or something), Roger and Stan will play an exho on 21st dec in Switserland for Roger’s foundation…. Goat !!! Can he (and Stan) be any more cuter?? Come on Roger, hope you and Stan will raise a lot of money for your foundation and of course…. hope you beat Stan :-) Love you Goat :-)

    [Reply]

    Katyani Reply:

    Actually…..does this mean Roger won’t play an exho also right before AO like last year??

    [Reply]

  5. If nothing goes wrong, in 4 weeks RF will be no. 2 !!!

    5 Weeks ATP Ranking

    1 Djokovic 12150 12150 11650 10650 10650

    2 Nadal 8665 8665 8365 8005 8005

    3 Federer 8170 8170 8170 8080 8080

    4 Wawrinka 5690 5600 5555 5375 5375

    Last year at the same time Roger had only 3055 live race points and was in place no. 7.

    See also

    http://www.atpworldtour.com/News/Tennis/2014/09/38/By-The-Numbers-Federer-Improvement.aspx

    [Reply]

    Katyani Reply:

    Hey Rahan, what’s up?? You know what I find so strange? Last year Roger got A LOT of heat for ending as nr 8 (retirement, not good enough, will not win anymore, bla bla bla). Now… Andy is even out of the top 10 and…. no one even mentions him…. Why doesn’t he get the same stuff all over him that Roger got??

    [Reply]

    rahan Reply:

    IMHO the answer is clear: Andy is not in the same league as Roger.

    P.S. Nice to see you back on Ruan’s blog.

    [Reply]

    Katyani Reply:

    Hey Rahan, yeah, just waiting to see how long it will last this time :-)
    By the way this is one of my favourite blogs. Even while not commenting, I read Ru-an’s and all your posts all the time :-) Hope this “Rogerless” time will past fast :-)

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    Because he is Murray :-)

    [Reply]

    Katyani Reply:

    “Because he is Murray”
    Nice one Ru-an. Roger that :-)

    [Reply]

  6. Oh oh, just read that Li Na is quitting tennis…. Damn…. I liked her so much….

    [Reply]

    Chris Reply:

    I really enjoyed her too. It’s so strange when someone retires. This one’s going to take a few days to sink in…

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    Yeah shame about that Katyani. I never watch the WTA but I like her.

    [Reply]

  7. An interesting question:

    Can Roger Federer Return to Number 1 in the World?

    “…Theoretically, if Djokovic didn’t win a match for the rest of the year and Roger matched his 2013 performance …, he would become number one. The beauty is that Djokovic cannot gain any points. He has nowhere to go but down. And with every win, not only will Roger’s point total rise, but Djokovic’s will diminish…”

    see: http://afanobsessed.sportsblog.com/posts/1087073/can_roger_federer_return_to_number_1_in_the_world_.html

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    I have been wanting to make a post about the ranking situation Rahan but I am still waiting to see what Roger’s schedule will be for the rest of the season. I don’t think he will be gunning for #1 anyway. Been there done that. I think he wants to be #2 so that Djokovic and NAdal could play each other in the AO semis. And that is very doable given the current ranking situation:

    2 Rafael Nadal ESP 8665
    3 Roger Federer SUI 8170

    I think Roger will skip Shanghai where he only has a R16 to defend, which means he will lose 90 points. In Basel he can win the title and gain 200 points. Lets say in Paris he defends his semi. Then in London lets say he defends his 400 and makes an extra 400 for making the final, although he could easily win it. That’s already enough to surpass Nadal if Nadal defends all his points. Then there is DC where lets say Roger wins both his singles and the Swiss win the title. That’s 225 more points for Fed. I think I was being pretty conservative with the points. Roger could win the WTF for instance. Either way it should be pretty close and we don’t know what Nadal will do either. I don’t expect much from him to be honest. It’s been a relatively poor year for him and the indoor season is his worst. I think Roger has a great chance to be #2 come the AO and he can make a big impact there. Maybe even win #18 there if things work out for him.

    [Reply]

    rahan Reply:

    If no.18 is a dream (and no 1. will be a consequence) I would be more than happy for DC and London wins .

    [Reply]

  8. Ru-an, can’t believe what I’m reading, Fed replacing Nadal in this Asian round robin Expo. Nadal pulling out citing injury but still seems to be playing Tsonga and playing doubles in Asia! I’m totally confused, if it’s true so much for all and sundry worrying about Roger’s stamina……one thing for sure when A O rolls round guess who will be rested and ready to go, or perhaps Nadal is really injured!!!

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    Well if Roger is tired come the AO he will have no one to blame but himself Elizabeth. He is the one in control of his schedule.

    [Reply]

    Dolores Reply:

    Greetings to you, Ru-an! Yes, I was very surprised to learn about Roger’s decision to play in India to replace Nadal. Personally, think he is overworking his body, but as you replied to Elizabeth, he is to blame himself for his unwise decisions should his health suffer, imho.
    Am keeping in touch, Ru-an, never miss reading your blog with comments to follow.
    Think we are all eager to see Roger play tennis, let us hope his health will hold up. Will be eager for your next blog, Ru-an.
    Keep well, be happy!
    Kindly,
    Dolores

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    Hello Dolores. Been wondering where you were since I haven’t heard from you in a while. I don’t like that Roger is going to India, especially since he is replacing Nadal. Now Nadal is the one who is resting, and Nadal does not even have a proper excuse for withdrawing.

    [Reply]

    Katyani Reply:

    Hey Ru-an, unfortunately I agree with you. Cannot believe why Roger is playing exho in India. Yes, he has never been there, but guess what?? That’s what he can do AFTER retirement.

    Didn’t someone mention him that look how the end of 2012 (playing exho) resulted in a “bad” year in 2013 and how not doing exho in 2013 resulted in him having very great results in 2014??

    I can almost see Novak (who I believe is also playing) pulling out because of the baby. And if Andy is playing, he might pull out too because of backproblems. Which means Roger will have to save the day again.
    But no mercy, this time, sorry Roger, if something goes wrong (tiredness, not enough rest, you will have only yourself to blame…

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    Yeah he is already doing the charity match with Stan Katyani. I don’t know why this is necessary.

    [Reply]

    Katyani Reply:

    Hey Ru-an, I think we just have to hope that he knows what he is doing and that his body can handle it. I mean, afterall, he is still the Goat of scheduling :-)
    So he has this begin Dec, than after 1,5 weeks the match with Stan and then like 2 weeks rest before Brisbane starts….
    To be honest I am more worried about the 4 days “rest” between WTF and DC…

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    Yeah he is good at scheduling but exhos have cost him in the past. Why are you worried about the 4 days between WTF and DC?

    [Reply]

    Jiten Reply:

    Katyani, Fed has been to India before after Tsunami hit the Southern part of India. If I remember correctly, he was in India along with Mirka in 2005. I vaguely remember some pictures of him with young kids in the rehabilitation centres.

    [Reply]

    Katyani Reply:

    Hey Jiten, I now hear that the exho in India will be 2 matches of 1 set?? So that is not that bad.

    Please don’t understand me wrong. I would love if Roger would be in all the countries where he has fans and he has never been. But to be honest, I also worry about his rest, schedule, etc. He is no springchicken you know :-) He needs his rest and I don’t want 2015 to begin “badly”. And now I hear that Rafa will not play it, so he will be “rested” when AO comes along.

    In Holland we have the ATP ABN AMRO in February. I would love if he would come there, but if he wants to skip it to rest and be ready for another tour, then I would say “go for it Roger”.

    But bro, I am really happy for you guys that he is coming to India. Do you think he will wear a “dhoti” for fun?? :-) And is it just me, or do Hindoestani just love the Goat?? :-)

    [Reply]

    Jiten Reply:

    Hi Desi sis in the Orange Country! Don’t get me wrong too. I also don’t like him coming in India for IPTL. My first reaction to this was: Roger, you too? I think IPTL is simply a silly idea of some opportunists (involved somehow with tennis) for churning out big money in the slack season. I am sure Roger would be here only for fun and his fans. Definitely, it won’t take much out of him like the 2012 South American exhos did to him. Compared to the seven matches he played in 2012 December, most of them going to three sets, this is nothing. However, I would have preferred him to stay back in Switzerland before the start of the 2015 season rather than traveling to India, be it my own country.

    [Reply]

  9. The French Tennis Federation has nominated the Stade Pierre Mauroy in LILLE to stage the 2014 Davis Cup by BNP Paribas World Group Final.

    The tie will be played on INDOOR CLAY under a retractable roof.

    The expected capacity will be a minimum of 27,000 spectators.

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    Yeah this is all on my FB page Katyani, DC surface, IPTL, etc. I’m posting all the latest Fed news there as I said I would.

    [Reply]

  10. Playing the ITPL is pointless. Roger doesn’t need the money, nor are there ranking points up for grabs. So why did he have to mess with his schedule? Something just doesn’t add up. I am an Indian and not particularly fond of the IPL (Indian Premier League – The t20 cricket tournament which inspired ITPL)..IPL is not cricket and ITPL certainly isn’t tennis. These events are more about raking in the moolah than increasing the popularity of the sport.

    Roger what were you thinking?? Flumoxxed…. totally.. :-(

    [Reply]

    Ru-an Reply:

    And now I hear he will be spending two weeks in India? Wtf?

    [Reply]

  11. Ok, so now that the Davis Cup Final will be played on clay, Roger should play Shanghai and skip Bercy. That would give him enough rest in between all tournaments.

    But you never know. I also agree that going to India is kind of a stupid idea..

    [Reply]

  12. Nadal’s withdrawal is a major blow for the IPTL and its founder, Mahesh Bhupathi, though the former Indian doubles player could not have wished for a more high-profile replacement. Federer confirmed yesterday that he had agreed to play in matches on 7 and 8 December for the Delhi-based Indian Aces team.

    So only 2 days for Roger I guess.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/tennis/rafael-nadal-primed-to-make-longawaited-return-to-action-at-the-china-open-9749519.html

    [Reply]

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