Australian OpenRoger FedererTennis Predictions

Australian Open Draw 2014: How Far Can Federer Go?

Hey all, the draw for Australia has landed and it's a pretty interesting one. On paper some of the top guys have it easy whilst some of the others have potential banana skins even in the first week.

With Roger's ranking at 6 he was always going to have to face some tough opponents early doors but it's not the worst draw imagineable, he's landed in Murray's Quarter but the Scot is looking pretty rusty since his surgery. My current expectation is that he makes the 4th Round without too many issues but after that it's a bit of a lottery.

Tsonga, his seeded 4th round opponent is looking sharp from what I saw in the Federer Exhibition and his performance in Abu Dhabi so he'd be a slight favourite in my book especially if his ground strokes penetrate the court.

Prior to that we could get a Wimbledon rematch against Stakhovsky in the third round which I think is nigh on guaranteed to be a Federer straight set job were it to happen. Verdasco could also be in the mixer there too, should be rekindle his 2009 form then he's a threat but if he's like the Fiasco of late then Fed has more than enough to handle him.

The second round looks most likely to be Stepanek who Roger holds a 13-2 advantage over and shouldn't cause too many problems unless the Swiss is having a terrible day at the office.

And finally onto his first match which is against young Aussie hope James Duckworth which I'd expect to be routine. I've not seen a whole lot of him but he has a fairly attacking style and I think he will try play aggressively. Roger said in his interview that Luthi watched his match in Brisbane because he played Nieminen so it looks like he knows what to expect. Can't see too many problems there.

Federer's Projected Opponents

  • Round 1: James Duckworth
  • Round 2: Radek Stepanek
  • Round 3: Fernando Verdasco / Sergiy Stakhovsky
  • Round 4: Gilles Simon / Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
  • Quarter Final: Andy Murray / John Isner
  • Semi Final: Rafael Nadal
  • Final: Novak Djokovic

Full downloadable .PDF draw

Can Roger Make an Impact?

Flying Federer

I think to really make a statement Roger needs to make the semi finals but if he were to make the Quarters that'd be a platform to work his way into the season from so either of those I'll be happy. This is Roger's 57th consecutive slam which is a big achievement but he also has an Australian Open semi final streak to try maintain that he's held since 2003.

If Brisbane came to a halt after the Matosevic match I'd be pretty confident of him doing some damage here but after the Hewitt final I'm a little less upbeat about his chances. I criticised Fed pretty heavily in my last post but it just felt like another big blow to me very early in the year. I know Roger rattled off some chat about being hungry, knows where his game is at and taking the positives but fact is he lost rather badly. I don't really see how Brisbane can be a success based on how it ended.

But what's done is done and Melbourne awaits, there might be another tough loss on the horizon but the way I see it I don't think it's necessarily going to decide how the rest of the season goes. He played a great AO last year then slumped for the rest so things can change pretty quick. The main thing is he doesn't choke a match away as they're by far and away the worst to watch. Getting outplayed is far easier to digest but blowing chances cuts deep.

The good news about this tournament is that it's over 5 sets, Melbourne has been a good hunting ground for him and Edberg will be joining the team. Maybe the Swede can inject a little bit of something into his performances. It was evident from Brisbane that his game is still there just the confidence was not, I'm not sure any coach can fix that over night but he might be able to patch it up enough to piece a run together.

As for the other top guys Djokovic has the easiest route on paper with only Wawrinka or Berdych the ones who can cause him trouble. Nadal has a few tricky opponents with Tomic in the first round, Monfils potentially in the third and Del Potro in the Quarters but if anyone can find their way through it'll be him. I actually think Tomic could be the biggest danger, he played well against Nadal in 2009 and I just can't see Del Potro doing damage to Rafa on these courts. He is coming in off a good win vs. Tomic in Sydney but his record in Australia is less than stellar so I'm not resting my hopes on the Tower of Tandil as much as I like him.

Murray is an unknown at this point as he's looked sluggish since making his return from the back injury. He lost in Doha early and Hewitt beat him in Kooyong so hardly a great start to the year for him. The one thing in his favour though is the way a draw in a slam works which gives him a little bit of time to work his way into the tournament.

In terms of dark horses I think Cilic would be one to watch out for and Chardy can't be written off either especially after his performance here last year. He probably should have made the final in Brisbane had he not capitulated so I'll be keeping an on eye on him. Isner, Hanescu and Simon so I pick Bellucci are also ones who could make a little run. Can any of the younger guys make an impact? There's plenty in the draw including Thiem, Kokkinakis and Kyrgios.

Anyway enough predictions and expectations, the draw is here but it can all change all that's left is to see Fed get on court and perform; I'm not interested in hearing that he's raring to go or that he think he's a better player now than in 2004; he just has to step on Rod Laver and give it some. Allez!

What are your expectations for Roger? Can you foresee any upsets? Will we see a tweener?

Jonathan

Huge fan of Roger Federer. I watch all his matches from Grand Slam level right down to ATP 250. When I'm not watching or tweeting about tennis I play regularly myself and use this blog to share my thoughts on Federer and tennis in general.

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160 Comments

    1. Kitch thought for the day: Taking a step backwards after taking a step forwards isn’t a disaster – it’s the beginning of a cha cha cha 🙂 (Robert Brault)

  1. If it was Roger of 2012, I have confidence he will reach at least semis. However Roger 2014 is very much work in progress. I still have not shaken my disappointed at his failure to secure Brisbane when competition was relatively weak. Based on the draw he should have relatively easy matches 1st and 2nd round. 3rd round onwards will be tough challenge with Starky and Tsonga after. Both matches will be probably stretched him, come the quarters, he will be probably be too tired which I do see him losing. I also see Murray perhaps losing early since he still trying to find his range. As for Nadal, will be must demolition job all the way to the Final. I will try to remain as positive as possible and root for Roger. Hopefully he can surprise all of us.

    1. The competition Brisbane was weak according to who and he lost in the final. Besides him winning Brisbane wouldn’t not say anything about his chances at the AO.

      1. Oh Yeah, I forgot Federer is a washed-up old man and you are going to change the name of this blog as soon as possible.

  2. Jonathan,
    I think Roger could go all the way to 4th R and then any win would be bonus. This is all based on the latest result and performance. Anything could happen, and I won’t be surrprised if he lose early or go deep!
    All the best Roger

  3. Hi Jonathan,
    I think we are taking too much from the Brisbane final loss. Had Fed broken Hewitt in any of his first
    two service games (had multiple break points), situation would have been entirely different! Often, it
    is seen when Roger misses break opportunities, he immediately loses serve. That’s what happened there.
    I think after all the positive changes Roger made, it’s all about nerves now. I just can not believe he can’t
    create any chances against the bests. Grab them when they come… All the best Fed!

    1. Well that’s kinda the whole point Ankur, he choked. So it’s hard not to focus on a match where he blew 90% of break points.

      I’m excited ahead of the AO but gotta keep it real.

  4. Here we go. Nadal ever the selfless angel. Apparently the courts will be playing faster this year. The balls are also different which move faster through the air.

    But will the change lead to more exciting, crowd-pleasing tennis? Nadal isn’t convinced.

    “I really don’t understand very well why they change [the speed] because the last couple of years, the Australian Open had amazing [matches], long ones, good ones for the crowd,” he said. “I don’t know why the people decide to make the conditions that fast. I am not sure for the show [it] is the best thing.”

    It’s not like they’ve made the courts lightning quick. At best, from what I gathered from the article, they’ll be playing maybe a tad faster. Given how slow they already were, it’s not like it’s going to suddenly transform the Australian Open into the abode of serve and volleyers.

    What a guy!!

    http://tennis.si.com/2014/01/11/roger-federer-rafael-nadal-andy-murray-australian-open-court-speed/

    1. Comments are too fast in this blog no?

      I dont no why are the admins are doing this to me…

      Speed of comments should be reduced 🙂

      1. lol Greek!

        There’s this statement going around that the fans like the longer matches, but has anybody ever actually seen a FAN quoted as saying that? I can’t STAND them myself, & quit watching. Give me shot-making (which those bashers can do, we’ve seen it from both of them on occasion…. they just DON’T if they don’t have to).

      2. Sure, I absolutely adore 5-hour plus matches where players spend most of the time slogging from the baseline. They’re only slightly less excruciating than watching last Sunday’s episode of “Sherlock” was 🙂

      1. @Alison: HAHAHAHA. It was horrible indeed. Such a pity.

        I’m sure even the lousy American alternative with Lucy Lu as Watson would have aired better episodes.

      2. No no no Gaurav, Elementary is a great show. I watch it all the time. Love how Lucy plays in it. Just love the show !!!

    2. Yah, It’s like he has a box of excuses ready:

      -Yeah, X played very well, and deserved to win, but with my knees, I could not defend my chances, no?
      -I played very well a couple of years ago, but they have changed the courts and it will not please the audience, it’s not fair, no?
      -blablabla….

      Dang I hate him! 😀

      1. I agree. I sometimes wish Fed would stop saying he’s feeling great and that his game is looking awesome.. And that despite getting his ass handed to him by Hewitt, he’s still feeling great. Lots of greats. Haha.

        I know it’s never going to happen, but I would much rather hear something honest like today sucked, I need to work on my returns, and my approach shots can be passed by Nadal’s grandmom etc. 😛

        Not like his pressers are fooling the ones that play him on court. 😛

      2. Agree…. Fed should stop giving funny over-optimistic statements. Sometimes it gets embarrassing for us…

    3. Rogers comments to what Nadal has said about the courts are a bit more direct than usual, I think:

      “I think even these conditions here, we’ll see long rallies after all. We’re not talking about a lightning speed court. In Brisbane it was fast, but it wasn’t lightning either. This is like medium, if that.

      I don’t know what the big problem is. Really can still play from the baseline, no problem. You can stay back, return from the back. You can do all that stuff if you want to. It’s not like it’s impossible.

      Even does it on the indoors where you don’t think that’s possible. That’s how he beat me in London anyway.”

      Basicly he´s saying stop whining Nadal, maybe a new less blowing air Roger 🙂

      1. While I agree with Roger, I think he may have slipped up there. The “that’s how he beat me in London” sounds a little like a bitter comment. Well, no, I’m looking for a better word, but I think it sounds like it contains too much contempt for the current state of affairs. Someone’s gotta say it, sure, but people will look at Fed and say he’s complaining rather than making a point because he’s actually playing.

      2. I don´t see it that way. I take it like he´s meaning that Nadal did quite good in London on fast indoor courts behind the baseline and there by there´s no reason for Nadal to make up a problem that´s simply not there, I like it 🙂

    4. Nothing but the “underdog formula” he uses at every tournament. Heck, he is never the favorite for the French open either. What a pathetic Spaniard 🙂

  5. Roger says he can knock off Nadal and Djoker I wish I could share his optimism. Or at least lets say I hope he knows better.

    I agree with Shamtoot its all open but I also dont want to imagine RF out before 4R.

    Nadal is mooning about court conditions again.
    You cant help disliking the guy even if your sort of neutral like me…

    http://tennis.si.com/2014/01/11/roger-federer-rafael-nadal-andy-murray-australian-open-court-speed/

    I have to read carefully the previous post when i find some time cause we should all seek deeper for some more Perfect tennis without caps RF in it. Sorry but this gonna happen sooner or later .

    Then there s this player from Greece Nikos Kyrgios who s looking good aint he?
    So hopefully will have after the perfect Greek Gambler a perfect Greek Tennis Player 🙂

      1. it’s just media hype
        he clearly stated WE(top 10) PLAYERS CAN KNOCK OFF THE TOP 2.Not i can knock them off

    1. Yeah it was his AO presser, the journo asked him if any of the top 10 fancy picking off Djoker or Nadal. And he said yeah of course but they are the top 2 for a reason or something like that.

      Kyrgios looks good, he has a chance but he keeps getting injured. Check out the previous post for a recap of his 2013 season.

      1. Thiem had a good win today! Def one to watch! I am taking Rog round by round. Every match is a work in progress for me. Playing in the heat of the day tomorrow….. Tough. Reckon Andy is pretty fragile and a potential upset waiting to happen. Go Soeda no mug. Nadal will wipe out Tomic, and I do think Delpo might perform better than he has before here. Djoker will stroll to the final. No oppo at all! Pity!

  6. I saw a tweet from Andy M saying the Rafa/Tomic match is to be played on Court 13! Is that possible? Surely not.
    Why would the organisers do that.

    As for Roger, well I’m just going to take it one match at a time, as I’m sure he is, hoping that it won’t just be one match. I’m mindful of the fact still that he estimated he would be back to strength in March/April, and that wasn’t after the Brisbane defeat it was a long time before. Using the new racquet in actual play must still be a work in progress, and we’ve seen some pretty wild misses from him over the last week, as well as some inspired shots. And he did not say he was happy with the result in Brisbane, he said he played badly (against Hewitt) and couldn’t find his rhythm. He said he was happy because he was able to play a lot of matches and now had a good idea of where he was at. What does he expect of himself in Melbourne I wonder? Rod Laver recently said he understood what Roger was going through because he could remember that when he played into his thirties one day he would play a brilliant match and the next day he just seemed to have forgotten how to play tennis. This is very much what we’ve been seeing with Roger and there’s probably nothing that can be done about it.

    Rod Laver, by the way, is having a sort of Indian summer isn’t he? I keep seeing photos and footage of him all over the place, as well being quoted all the time. He seems to be happy to still be a part of things.

    1. Usually when old players come back into the limelight it means they’re bankrupt lol. But I guess the ATP / ITF are doing a bit more these days to honour some of the legends and keep them around the game which is a good thing.

    1. I do have faith in Roger. It’s just that I don’t think he’s where he wants to be yet and so I’m trying to be realistic about Melbourne. That way I won’t be disappointed if he doesn’t do well, and won’t start blaming him either. It’s best for both of us that I temper my enthusiasm – but Allez Roger!

  7. I put my hope to Gilles Simon to tire Tsonga to the ground so that he will fold in 3 against Rog. Also, lets hope Isner takes Andy to 5 so that we get to see how Andy measures up with a five setter in his legs and Rog 3, that would be the opposite of last years AO. If Isner would like to win in 5, sure, go for it man.

    1. The problem is that Simon is out (injury), so I don’t think much can tire out Tsonga, he’s gonna be fresh as if it was his first round 😛 Let’s see how this goes, but I’m just gonna enjoy the tournament, and see what happens 🙂

      1. Hey Susie, what about Andy?? Says he is kind of “injured” and just destroyed Soeda
        6-1 6-1 6-3….
        And Seppi just defeated Hewitt, a long 5 setter…

  8. Re. Andy Murray’s tweet – Rafa v Tomic on Court 13 —- this is simply Andy’s form of humour. He evidently raised some eyebrows and confessed it was a macabre joke. As for Andy’s chances at AO – he could be out in the first round or he could actually win! As for RF – I can’t see him winning against Doko or Rafa – but maybe he’ll get to 2nd week. Unfortunately for me, RF talks too much.

  9. Nice piece Jonathan, I think I agree with pretty much everything you’ve said.

    I agree with those including you who’ve said it’s not a terrible draw. The main thing was to stay out of Rafa & Novak’s quarters, and the draw has thankfully done that. Now it’s a question of which Federer shows up. If it’s Shankerer or Breakpointwasterer, we’re in for some more disappointment no matter who’s on the other side of the net. Rita had some good comments above about adjusting to the new racquet. It’s not an extension of his arm yet, but when that happens, look for fireworks. I’m hopeful that that moment will come, but it does seem like maybe it’s too soon to hope for it during this AO.

    Anything less than QF is disappointing to my mind; given the AO SF streak, perhaps anything less than SF is a little disappointing, if unrealistic. SF would be a phenomenal result, really. F is in the land of dreams.

    On the other hand, given results at the last two Slams, R3 wouldn’t be terrible either.

      1. Superb article. And it touches on a point of view I’d never really considered- that Federer, for whom everything has always come so easily, even for granted, is now having to play the percentages more.

  10. Hi Joathan and hello all.
    I really don’t want to get my hopes up high really and just enjoy whatever I can from Feds play.
    I see this going two ways.
    Fed makes the quarters.
    OR
    Up until now he tanked the whole year, so he can get a trump card out of his but and go all the way and win the damn thing.

    “At the end of the day it all comes down to how well I play to see how big my chances are to go really far and win the tournament. But, I’m very focused right now on getting through the first week.” Federer

    I don’t thing the hunger is just there yet…
    As I said. Being happy for his wins together with you guys is one of the best feelings in the world for me.
    I know he will retire with (at least) 18 GS, but I don’t think this is the one. Allez Roger Federer!

    All the best,
    Tilas

    1. Hey Tilas, I have a confession. I still want him to get to 20. I know it’s totally unreasonable, but – so is most of his career.

      1. I said after the Wimbledon final 07 he would finish at 20, so I´m sticking with that 😉 and I do believe it still!!

      2. Mark my words guys…. Not only will Roger finish with 25 GS, but there will be a or there will be talk of a Roger-slam in between !!! This is what believe in Roger does to a person when Roger still believes in himself. Mark my words…. this will happen !!!

      3. Katyani, that would mean the ITF will be finally exposed for the corrupt pieces of s#&t that they are no? 🙂

  11. Hi Jonathan,
    Looking at the draw everything depends on how federer plays in round 4 against tsonga.
    If they were faster courts I don’t think federer will have 100% chance, but rafa will face problems.
    I’ve mentally fixed to round 4 and would like to see a fighting federer against tsonga rather disappointing millions
    Of fans,
    Gojowczyk can be a dark horse?? Yes he can be , only thing is he lacks encouragement.
    Of all I’m waiting for the 1st round match rafa vs tomic (tomic is my favourite).

  12. Well really, the draw is as tough as it´s always been, beat the guy on the other side of the net 7 times and the trophy is Fed´s, peace of cake right? 😉
    But if you scratch the surface things are not so simple more I know that. But even though you Jonathan don´t take to many positives from Brisbane, I do. The reasons why I have mentioned some times in a former post, but I think we will see a good Roger at the AO, and actually Murray in his form is not the worst quaterfinal right now, I see Tsonga as a bigger challenge right now. But is it going to be a Roger good enough to win it, I don´t think so. My prediction is if Roger gets past Tsonga he will also get to the semi, I´m not even sure Murray will make it to the quater, he could fall to Isner or Kohlschreiber who is looking better and better the last seasons.
    And I get the sense that people would like Nadal to lose before the semi, that I don´t want. If Roger was to make it to the semi I wish it would be against Nadal. Don´t get me wrong I would not like Nadal to win the tournament because of a lot of things, but even though the chances of Fed beating Nadal right now is very slim I still want to see it, and I want Roger to beat the best and I would feel so good if he beat Nadal, SO F…..G GOOD! And it would boost Feds confidence like nothing else. Maybe it´s just the way I am, I always hope for the strongest opponents in the league I play because it gives me the most satisfaction when I succed. So a FeDal semi is what I´m hoping for.

    As for upsets I think like you Jonathan that Cilic could cause some damage in Roger´s quater and also Daniel Brands. Those two could give Tsonga some troubles. Othervise like a said before Isner or Kohlschreiber could test Murray and last I´m looking foreward to follow Hewitt who dosen´t get enough credit for his play in Brisbane at all.

    1. Fed in his better days, could not beat Dull at the AusOpen final. Since then, Dull is doping more and can’t seem to lose to anyone other than Djoker and we all know what has happened to Fed since then. I can see Fed making the semis if he can get by Tsonga in 4th. I would be surprised if Fed can win a set in the semis, to be brutally honest. I hope Dull breaks his knees and goes out of the game for ever

  13. WARNING: Spoilers ahead. If you have a weak heart, and cry yourself to sleep when Federer loses, please do not read.

    Roger has a 0% chance of winning the Australian Open 2014, if he has to go through all of Tsonga, Murray, Nadal, and Djokovic.

    However, if his rivals get eliminated earlier, the percentage increases. If all of the above rivals are eliminated before Roger can play them, his chances increase to 80%.

      1. I would say 1-5% chance of winning the whole thing. If he gets EVERYTHING right in the later rounds, then he can beat the top guys. He has to be feeling great physically and mentally. If not, then its game over.

      2. Chillax man 🙂 You think I enjoy it when Roger crashes out of a slam? Tell you what, if Roger wins this whole thing, as penance, I’ll display a gravatar of shame of your choosing. Deal? 🙂

    1. Well Sid 0% of winning? I would like to see the equation of that? He´s defintley not the favorite or anything close to that, but in a slam he will never be at 0%. I think someone has been sipping to much Jim Bean since the Brisbane final 😉

      1. Hahahaha! Ok, how about 10% then when having to face the entire field? 🙂

        No really, the racquet will take time. We do not know how it will behave against those four.

      2. Yes the racquet will take time, and 10 % maybe the highest facing the entire field also, but the Swiss maestro is never at 0%, that´s an insult. But again it´s puts me on the same level, I kind of like that 😉

  14. Fans are mad at Federer because he is getting older and they want him to produce the same results. Federer is trying to stay positive. Fans are so obsessed with his tennis achievements that some fans want him to even FORGET his family and just focus on tennis.

    1. No KFedFan, that is not true. I (and a lot other fans) want BOTH for him, his focus on tennis and his family life.

      Roger is of the top guys the ONLY one who is proving that it is possible to have it all and to do it all.
      I mean compete at the very top, have a good family life, beeing a good husband and father and son, president of ATP Players council, president of his own foundation, practise sessions, interviews, hunderd ads, beeing a good and honest role model and beeing a good person.

      I want Roger to be the very absolutely best at tennis, but at the same time I also want him to enjoy his kids.
      I don’t want for him that his twins write a book about him over twenty years saying “My daddy was the Greatest tennisplayer of all time but a lousy father who never spend time with us”.
      We all, Roger’s fans, don’t want for him that his own daughters don’t recognise him….

      And to be honest, Roger IS showing that you can compete for titles and have a family.
      I mean come on, why are Rafa and Andy not talking about marriage? Why are the others not talking about having children? Why are they so “scared” to have a family??

      1. They don’t have children because they are being brainwashed into thinking you can’t have a career and a family. Only way to compete is eat, sleep and drink tennis. Federer was 27 yrs when him and Mirka got married. They had to adjust to being married and having children. Federer is older and is in a different point in his life and some fan can’t except that .

      2. Roger for Pope??? No Pablo, Roger is thank God not a saint or perfect. Just a human beeing like us. That is why I like him a lot. If he was perfect, he would be boring……

      1. Chill out, really! I don’t remember naming anybody on this site? It was off another site. So it is you that needs to chill out. Guilty much? I have read so called fan have made suggestions concerning even when Mirka was pregnant the first time. Why because Federer was still chasing the GS record at the time. The other players don ‘t have families because they are not ready or being told that having families is a death sentence for your career. We all know that Federer passed Pete GS record and weeks at #1 anyway.

      2. You don’t remember naming- here is a comment of yours comment from a previous post:

        [BS. You guys a self-centered when it comes Federer…You guys only want Roger to do things that benefit his career. Way to be supportive. You guys probably think him having another child with a Mirka is meaningless too.]

        That’s you accusing other posters here without any basis whatsoever. So again just chill out. 🙂

  15. Pretty difficult for Roger, but that’s to be expected, he’s ranked 6th after all. I’m just going to take it one match at a time. 🙂

  16. Jonathan,
    You seem to be blinded by the disappointment of the loss Vs Hewitt.

    You have to remember these before evaluating Roger’s game and fitness.

    1) Roger is struggling to control the extra power of the new racquet.
    Roger played for like 10 years with a 90sq inch racquet which did NOT aid for POWER. Roger is always used to generating power from his fast free swinging FH, BH and serves. He only knew to swing INSANELY fast for 10 years. IT IS VERY DIFFICULT FOR ANY PROFESSIONAL PLAYER TO MAKE SUCH A DRASTIC CHANGE TO a larger RACQUET at such a late stage of their careers. Be happy that Roger is still searching for answers, still trying to improve in spite of being the most successful player in the history of tennis.
    So give Roger some time, (at least 4 months) to let him get used to control the extra power of the larger racquet.

    2) The fast court speed of Brisbane did NOT help 1) either. Had it been of the the same speed as Rod Laver Arena (Balls being the same as well), Roger would have definitely played better simply because the slow conditions would have forced him to play longer rallies and construct the point before hitting a winner. In that process, Roger would have got accustomed to his new racquet much better.

    3) The average temperature during the day in Brisbane during the course of 1 week was more than 41, 42 degrees celcius. Thats HOT.. Roger had long practice sessions and played the most number of matches than anybody else in Brisbane (3 doubles and 4 singles — in 5 days). So anybody would get EXHAUSTED after this. So Roger was moving slightly slower due to this.

    4) Hewitt played really well. Did u see the timely lobs that Hewitt executed to perfection at the most crucial points in the match ? Had at least 1 of those lobs been under or over cooked, i think Roger could have won this match.

    So if any one of 1), 2) ,3) or 4) was down a notch, Roger could have won this match and changed your perspective of his chances at Australian Open.
    At the same time, i do NOT say he WILL 100% win the Australian open. I say that that is also a possibility and Roger losing before the 4th round is ALSO a possibility.

    However, i surely say that Roger will HIT PEAK GS winning form (with the NEW racquet of course) prior to the French open .

    1. There were many Roger 2013 moments in the final. The most crucial factor which decided the winner in the match was the break point conversion. Fed converted 1 out of 10 break points. Really poor stat, he’s the one to blame himself, don’t make too many excuses. How come in the first couple of matches he was playing fine and in the final, it was a completely different story? Fatigue was not really a big factor here, Roger is fine playing these sorts of conditions (he usually trains in Dubai, which is also very hot and humid) and even though he may have been a step slower, the loss in the final was due to his failure to convert BPs in the third set. Most of his stats in the third set were better than Hewitt’s, but Hewitt beat him in one – BP conversion rate. 1/2 for Hewitt and 0/7 for Federer.

    2. I’m not blinded by the loss Sakthi I just not searching for excuses. I call it how I see it, it was a choke basically.

      Tomorrow is a new day, just gotta see what happens.

    3. Don’t see Fed winning this at all. His goal for the year is to win Wimbledon and I hope he makes it as this could be his last chance. Hope team Fedberg can get through Murray, Dull and Djokovic at Wimby. I do not see Fed winning any of the other 3.

  17. Re the weather. I’ve just seen it’s predicted to peak at 41 degrees on Tuesday in Melbourne which is when Roger will be playing – in the daytime. I don’t know what the temperature was in Dubai but 41 is hot! Just another little obstacle for him. At least it’s his first match so he should be fresher, and it should go down a degree or two after that.

      1. On the other hand, as someone just pointed out to me, if they play on Rod Laver they might put the roof on if it’s that hot 🙂

  18. Like most reasonable fans on this site, I think if he reaches the Q/F then that is as much as we can hope. He just isn’t in the winning habit when it comes to tough matches,and I can see his mind and game letting him down in tight situations.

    Nadal is probably favourite, but I think he is most vulnerable at the beginning of tournaments and Tomic can be terrible or can be great. If he is going to get beat then this is possibly the most likely place before a match with Djok.

    1. i think the big test will be 4th round against Tsonga. Murray’s quarter is pretty open with Murray himself pretty questionable. Even if he makes it or he doesnt, I’d fancy roger’s chances in the QF.

      I think that Nadal getting tomic in the first round is actually a pretty good thing for him. The concerns about drained energy when facing a good player early basically doesnt apply to Nadal; the guy has endless physical and mental energy. What he’s going to get, though, is a tough match with a tricky opponent that he will never lose to. I’m sure whatever Tomic throws at him, Nadal will be able to raise his level and crush the poor kid. So basically Tomic is going to help him get match ready and increase his confidence.

  19. Hi jonathon. After watching Fed make tactical errors time and time again, I have to conclude that he isn’t as smart of a tennis player as we have given him credit for. I will always be a fan of his and love watching him play, and admire him for his class and philanthropy. But it just doesn’t make sense to me to see him play the way he has been over the last year. He just doesn’t play smart tennis. Certainly not like you would expect a 17 slam, 16 year pro veteran. He isn’t playing percentages and isn’t playing according to situations or score. I was watching delpo today and was able to relax and enjoy the match. I can’t do that anymore with fed sorry to say. It’s stressful to watch him these days. For the sake of my mental health I sure hope he gets his act together! He needs brad Gilbert desperately! Tim

    1. [He isn’t as smart of a tennis player as we have given him credit for]

      You’re joking, right? Read what you said and think about it, real hard. Roger Federer is not known for his power serve, or power game. He is known for the variety he throws at opponents. It’s only in the last few years that he has been forced to get into baseline exchanges, with a racquet that’s outdated.

      He is the most tactical player out there. On the contrary, Nadal and Djokovic survive because of their brute strength and very specific patterns of play. I mean really, what does a Nadal vs Djokovic match come down to? Matching Nadal’s forehand to Djokovic’s backhand, and matching Nadal’s backhand to Djokovic’s forehand. And Nadal, the more he has his back to the wall, the harder he hits, thanks to his racquet and strings, and the higher he moonballs. That’s not tactics, that’s like…

      Jeez! Why I’m a banging my head against a brick wall?

    2. Chill out man! He didn’t mean Roger not smart letraly I guess he meant to say for the last year and now he didn’t adapt his game with rapid change which is not a smart move. And by the way, I don’t describe Roger as smart player, he is very natural talented player, and he doesn’t need to be smart!! All his play comes naturally
      So relax man relax and that wall, we need it man don’t break it 😉

    3. I have to say my perception of Rogers game lately is quite the opposite. If find that he plays the percentage shots too much and doesn’t break the predictable patterns of play. It also seems that the shot making that used to get him out of trouble is not there to the same degree. Also, too often on the put away shots he will put the ball within reach of the opponent and has to make another go at it. I’m not sure if one should put it down to tactics or execution but some of the approach shots have been down right terrible. Roger does seem to play a little bit differently nowadays, more chip returns and fewer backhands down the line.
      Yet, how quickly we seem to forget. 2011 Navratilova went of record to say that Roger would maybe win another slam but he would never get back to #1. The Roger of 2013 was not all that different to the Roger of 2012. Guys like Hewitt and Haas show that age may not be all that huge a factor. It is something else with Roger I think. His weakness originates from the same part of his game that makes him great, his variety. When Rogers head is clear he will execute his game plan and the shots required effortlessly. Lately, his mind seem less clear. Maybe the goblins in his head are playing hide and seek with his confidence or something but that 1 tenth of a second that his mind interferes with his shot making messes up his game.

      1. HaHa! Hewitt and Haas have played way less matches in their career than Federer. Federer has been way more consistent throughout his career than any of those two. Haas had to retire in his 1st round match, so they shouldn’t be held up as “age is just a number”. Haas is going to start feeling his age because to tries to play Ferrer type schedule. Hewitt and Haas will never win any tournament above a 250. Also the Roger of 2013 is different from the Roger of 2012.

    4. I agree, Federer is so talented but he lacks intelligence and eggs. He just doesn’t show the experience that is supposed to have.

  20. Hey, questions for you guys. I just had this thought, and I was wondering what if anybody would like to answer this-

    What if one day, Roger announced that he would play retire the day he wins his 18th slam. It could be two weeks from now, it could be 2 years. What would you you wish for?

    To be able to watch Federer for a little longer, even though you have to endure presumably frustrating losses (but also those flashes of brilliance that we’ve all come to love), or would you be happier knowing that the eve of the finals might be the last time you see Federer on a tennis court- one final flourish of magic and then no more? 😛

    I can’t decide.

    1. Well if there´s was one more thesis saying that he would defintley win that 18th slam eventually then there was no doubt, wait to win it. Because if there was two years before he would win the 18th slam he could then win some Masters and 500 in between.
      But if the choise where between now (in two weeks) or (maybe)never then I would probably say take it now and then enjoy your life with the family Roger….. And when the new baby arrived he would announce his return to the tour at Wimbledon 😉

  21. Looking at the schedule for tomorrow, Federer seems to be playing at the hottest time of day (the only one of the top players to do so), and the temperature is predicted to be 43 degrees. I do hope they put that roof on.

    Wondering if I should set my alarm clock or not bother to go to bed? Probably won’t sleep thinking about it anyway.

      1. Well I managed to sleep for 2 hours but I’m up now. Better stay awake. Looks like this match won’t take much longer. It’s 38 degrees in Melbourne. That’s not so bad.

      1. Given that your predictions are invariably off, I’m happy with this one 😛

        (Just kidding about the predictions part) Hope you’re wrong though. For probably the only time in my life, I’ll be rooting for that unlikeable Australian brat.

      2. Well, so much for my hopes of Tomic taking some of the speed out of Dull’s legs! Damn. That’s the only halfway decent opponent he had to face isn’t it?

      3. When “he” has luck on his side….. my God, honest people struggle and other people…..
        Could Tomic just not hang on for another two hours??? Make him atleast tired…
        Now that Isner is gone, it is only Delpo who has not got a good record at AO.

        Speaking about records….
        Roger and Novak can be the first (or second?) to have 5 AO.
        Rafa can be the first in open era to have won each slam atleast twice….
        But trust me, Rafa won’t win AO… He can’t.

      4. Katyani, do you honestly believe an injured/tired/not interested Tomic could tire Rafa out? I think it might be better like this. He doesn’t get to play himself into form, and his first good opponent would be delpo. You never know, although I don’t believe one second that delpo has a chance against Rafa here…

  22. I can’t believe that you guys lose a nights sleep to watch Fed.
    What can I say… Respect.
    I ld die if I had to stay up all night and than have to work from 8 till 5 -.-

    I agree Katyani RN is going to trash Tomic easily in three.

    Hewitt blewitt this time hope he ld doitt last weak 🙁

    Brave Ffans baring a sleepless niight tell me :Was V over Duckworth worth of staying up or was nt it worth more than a win over duck?”

    Simon is struggling dont know if thats good cause I can see Jo Wil Ali cruining towards RF.

    Why dont anybody replay Pablo?
    I dont want Pablo go away.

    hey Pablo! Nadal s got eggs cause he s a chicken : pok pok pok – but pick pick pok

    I love it when I elevate the level of this blog

    1. Hey GG, I slept in total half an hour tonight to watch Roger’s match and especially his applause when he came into the court. Was more than Duckworth. Since then I have been at work and no…. I am not tired !!! You see, you can watch Roger’s matches and have a normal workday !!!
      About the match. It was his first, it was like 39 degrees and most importantly… he won.
      He could have won sooner if he would convert one of those hunderd breakpoints, but…. hey, that’s a part of Roger which he is working on (has to do that asap though). He only played 2 months with the new racquet so I am going to give him time.
      I am SO tired of reading all the articles that are negative about Roger… give the guy a break.
      He won. YES, he could and SHOULD have converted more. The others are not going to give him breaks that easy.
      But… I am on Roger’s side. Just one match at the time. No expectations. All he HAS to do is convert more, that’s all. Hope Roger enjoys today. He is saved from negativity. If he loses his next match, then everybody will be all over him again. So hope he enjoys atleast one day of piece.

      As for Tomic… no way he is defeating Rafa….

    2. I stayed up and watched. Wouldn’t have been able to sleep anyway. Was it worth it? Definitely. I don’t have to go to work but I would have managed if I had to. What makes you passionate GG?

      1. When I was young and romantic I fell in love and had sleepless nights and it didnt matter.Just like you do!
        Know I m a greedy old gambler and I ld only stay up to play poker or stay at the casinos day and night… 🙂
        Katyani we were right
        Tomugs out ! To hard and dull for Tomug to mugg Nadull…
        I m stuck with those tongue twisters we go through with my older daughter for her english lessons.

        G.Simon will soon be out, this match or the next one

  23. Had an exam so was no way I would stay up to watch him :/

    Did I miss anything decent? Should I download the match or is it a waste of time?

    1. Didnt watch either. Probably them that watched now sleep.

      What bothers me again is BP convertion. Very very low again 13% or something. not sure
      When RN gets one and nails it and then Tomic is out .
      No clutcheness.
      Can t go deep like this can he?

  24. Hey guys, anyone who kind of does not like something about Roger’s outfits, please take a look at what Novak was wearing yesterday….. Suddenly all of Roger’s outfits don’t look that bad right??
    Ps: Loved his outfit from today….

    1. Someone on tv said his outfit remainded hime of Star Trek.

      Ears sticking out, stareing eyes but most of all his game lately looks like coming out of this world.

      Stepanek is out too. So Feds way should be a litle easier on paper at least.

    2. Katyani, you might want to check out Berdych’s outfit 😛
      *as a security measure, please put your protective goggles on* 😛

      1. Nooooooooooo Simon, I like his red shorts !!! And…. be careful, I like Berdych a lot (you know the misunderstood types)…. of course I ONLY like him when he is NOT beating my Roger !!!

    3. I like the shirt and shoes – not so much the shorts, but I agree, compared to Novak he looked wonderful. I think Andy wears some strange things as well, especially those body hugging outfits he adopts sometimes.

  25. What do you know, Dimitrov into the second round. Though he lost the first set in a tiebreak, he didn’t offer a single breakpoint and had 50% BP conversion. Anybody saw that match? From the stats it seems like a solid performance.
    Dimi is heading for Raonic (1-1 HH) it seems and then Rafa.

    1. Diden´t see the match, but I´m defintley a fan of Dimitrov so I really hopes he does well in Australia, and it seems like a great start from him.

  26. Diden´t see the match, but I´m defintley a fan of Dimitrov so I really hopes he does well in Australia, and it seems like a great start from him.

  27. HI Sid, I’m sorry but I have to disagree with you. Federer has been known until the last few years as being the more versatile, but also having the most powerful forehand out there and the best finishing shots. His serve while not being the fastest is one of the most accurate and so hits a lot of aces. His match against Hewitt was embarrassing. Not just for the amount of mis-hits, and unforced errors but because of his not being able to change a losing game. A mark of a true champion is to find a way to win even when you are not playing well. Yes he has all the shots in the book but he is not, I repeat, not playing smart tennis. If one of my players was mishitting and making countless unforced errors, the lst advice I would give him or her is to extend the points out and try to get a lot of balls in play to try to get a rhythm going. Not to keep going for winners and low percentage shots. With all of his talent why can’t he keep the ball in play? It’s because he is too stubborn to admit that he can’t hit through guys anymore. Look at his break point average, look at his first serve percentage, look at his serve return percentages. It’s right there to see. Doing things over and over again and expecting different results is what players at the bottom of the atp list do. I watch delpo these days and can relax watching him because his errors are infrequent, and he plays smart percentage tennis. Fed is not. I will always love watching Fed, and I admire him as a player and a man, but he needs to start playing smart, or quit. I don’t want to watch him self destruct. He has too much class and talent. Losing bone head matches is okay for me, not someone who has won over 700 matches and has won 17 slams. Brad gilbert would teach him how to use his great talent at the right times in a match, and how to be in better position on the court. Talent is not enough, all the top 500 guys in the world have tons of talent. I watched a top ten college match the other day with guys hitting 130 mph serves and making very few unforced errors. Beautiful strokes don’t mean much unless you get the ball in play. Tim

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