ATP 500Roger FedererSwiss Indoors

Federer Makes Routine Start at Swiss Indoors

We're underway at the Swiss Indoors and Roger made light work of Mikhail Kukushkin 6-1 6-2 to start his title defence in the best possible fashion. It was a pretty routine nights work for the Basel native as he swiftly went up 5-0 in the first set before taking it 6-1 in just 22 minutes. Kukushkin offered some sterner resistance at the start of set 2 but was broken in game five and seven as Roger sealed it 6-2 and moved to 57-9 lifetime in Basel.

Quick Match Recap

Federer vs Kukushkin Basel 2015

Kukushkin won the toss and elected to receive; Federer held to love to kick things off. Kukushkin instantly found himself under pressure at 0-40 before making it to deuce only to falter and get broken for 2-0.

The break was swiftly consolidated and Federer moved up a double break to lead 4-0. That was soon 5-0 and the Swiss closed out the set 6-1.

During the changeover Kukushkin had the trainer out which provided him with a mini rally as he dug himself out of trouble saving 3 break points to hold at the start of set 2. The man from the number one exporter of potassium then had to save 2 more break in game three but again held to lead 2-1.

At 2-2 though Roger finally got the key breakthrough to lead 3-2, held for 4-2. Reeled off a SABR on break point of game 7 to lead 5-2 and then served it out to love to setup a tie with Kohlscrheiber in the Round of 16.

Match Stats

  R. Federer M. Kukushkin
Aces 5 1
Double Faults 3 2
1st Serve % 55% 53%
1st Serve Points Won 20/22 (91%) 11/28 (39%)
2nd Serve Points Won 13/18 (72%) 14/25 (56%)
Break Points Saved 2/2 (100%) 9/13 (69%)
Service Games Played 8 7
1st Return Points Won 17/28 (61%) 2/22 (9%)
2nd Return Points Won 11/25 (44%) 5/18 (28%)
Break Points Won 4/13 (31%) 0/2 (0%)
Return Games Played 7 8
Winners 25 9
Unforced Errors 13 15
Net Points Won 17/20 2/4
Total Service Points Won 33/40 (83%) 25/53 (47%)
Total Return Points Won 28/53 (53%) 7/40 (18%)
Total Points Won 61/93 (66%) 32/93 (34%)
SABR 1/1 (100%) 0/0



Thoughts on the Match

Federer Basel 1st Round 2015

Routine start here against a decent quality opponent but one you'd always fancy Fed to get the better of. Kukushkin has a good record indoors but didn't really get into the match; slipping to a 5-0 deficit is never a great idea against the best front runner ever and Roger just rushed him with his style of play. The Kazakh also didn't look to be at 100% taking a visit from the trainer at the end of set 1 and if you're not at least close to 100% then you're not getting it done vs. Fed, regardless of how many break points he might waste πŸ˜†

As for Fed, just a solid start, served well and I thought his footwork was pretty awesome from start to finish; again not ruthless on the break points but that's just how things go. Winning was the most important thing here after losing early in Shanghai so now it's just about building on that and trying to stick around for some Pizza on Sunday πŸ™‚

Predictions vs. Kohlschreiber

Kohli Halle

Next up is Philipp Kohlschreiber who saw off Qualifier Jerzy Janowicz in three sets. Fed owns this guy in the H2H and I'm expecting the trend to continue on Thursday. Kohli is great to watch too so it should be a good match but I think Fed just has too much for him; better in all areas and the gap is even wider indoors. The German might offer some resistance, or even bag a set if he's playing at his best but I'll pick Fed in two as he's better equipped to force the issue and should be able to use his variety to keep Kohlschreiber off balance. 6-4 6-2. Allez!


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 writing about tennis I play regularly myself and have a keen interest in tactics, equipment and technicalties of the sport.

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  1. Good to see Fed back in action again after the disappointment in Shanghai. Seemed like a solid performance considering he hasn’t played much in a while. Maybe the extra rest has done him well. Looks like the conditions suit him very well, should have a very good chance if Nadal and Fed end up in the final. Actually I wouldn’t mind that. They are bound to meet again eventually, and better here than in Melbourne.

    1. It could happen after Nadal came back from the brink. Look at Shanghai last year for Fed, should have been put away but ended up winning the whole thing. Dunno about Nadal’s form though, he’s improving but court doesn’t suit him much.

  2. Looking up on Stats, Roger played very good I guess…>50% on return points won? if he can do that consistently, that should do it for match….

    “The man from the number one exporter of potassium” – That cracked me up, Good one…Have fun in Basel…

  3. Easy, stress-free win – I like it! πŸ™‚

    And just as an aside on the BP conversion:

    ‘…In other words, break point conversion rates represent only a small part of a player’s performance on any given day. Earning those break opportunities can be every bit as important, and that’s one category in which Federer remains strong.’

    Great movement, sweet volleying, looking easy on the eye as always.

    Hope you have a great time in Basel Jonathan.

  4. The court looked really fast which is a great thing.
    The saberer played well and I am looking forward to his next match.
    Dimitrov played well and so he can cause an upset by defeating Nadal

  5. As the opening match after the break, it was a peRFect performance.
    Such a fun watching super-sharp Fed.

    Prepared a PT banner? Bring good vib to the man from us all, Jonathan.
    Have a fab time but don’t mess up this time – tell that to him πŸ˜‰

  6. Potassium exporter n.1??? Where did you dig that out from? I can’t comment on the game since I only followed the score on livescore. Having said that, I will comment on potassium since I’m a much better chemist than a tennis expert or player: soft metal, reacts violently with water even on the base line. Burns with a violet flame, more reddish than Fed’s shirt. Scratch it with a volley and a shiny surface shows briefly, only to dim to muddy grey on the last tiebreak.

      1. Yes, I watched that movie twice. It’s a blast; my kids loved it!
        I think that only Pamela Anderson was aware that it was a mockumentary. Sacha kept putting his own health at stake, sometimes even his life…

      2. Potassium is very seldom handled in its pure form because it’s so reactive. It’s much easier to move it around as a salt and get the pure metal by electrolysis. 1 kg of potassium chloride contains more potassium than 1 kg of potassium nitrate, so the export statistics are a bit ambiguous as to who is #1. I would add that as statistics go, 55% is a bit poor for first serves in, but Fed compensated that with nice footwork. Did we forget that bananas are a good source of potassium to prevent cramps? Tennis players sucking some goo from a plastic tube is a disgusting and ridiculous sight. Eat more bananas! Get natural. Potassium is our friend.

  7. Ah, those stats are far more comprehensive than the pathetic ones on the ATP site. Apart from a couple of wobbles it looked to me as though Roger was playing pretty well. And at least he won a match this time! Thanks for the writeup, Jon. Just don’t go and jinx him now, all right?

    And the outfit looks GOOD …

  8. I thought Roger looked to be very fit out there. Moving well and seemed to be a pretty fast court.
    I saw Kohlschreiber play at IW this year, his game is better than his ranking.

    Don’t screw it up Jonathan.

  9. Fast match, fast reporting! Good opener to watch! Fed said he was seeing the ball very big, hope that continues! Hv s great trip J and don’t jinx him!! Allez!

    1. Hope you have the best seats in Basel to see Fed build on his fine start…may you have safe travels and even more excitement experiencing his genius in his birthplace! Will be looking for the Perfect Tennis banner ….enjoy it all.

  10. Good start, some rust on first serves but glad to see he got his % up – was only 50% after set 1. Hadn’t heard him say he’s seeing the ball big, that’s good to hear, hope it keeps up.

    Positive vibes for both of you for the next match, & safe travels!

    1. Yeah I’ve not seen that comment either, saw ATP interview but not seen presser.

      Just found some quotes:

      β€œWhat I did was good, maybe I could have been a bit more efficient on break point chances and tried a few different things that didn’t match up that well with what he was doing,” said the Swiss world No 3.”

      β€œBut I moved well, served well and got off to a good start. That was the goal. Once in the lead I was able to stretch that and keep the pressure on him”

      “I was seeing the ball as big as a melon,” said the 34-year-old, who has five titles this season. β€œI’m very happy with this performance, especially to advance so well here at home.

      β€œThe next match will be a bigger challenge and a different challenge against Kohlschreiber. He’s got different weapons than Kukushkin. If you have beaten someone 10 times there is the possibility that the next time you could have a loss. But having that kind of a record is always good for confidence.”

  11. Great start and just happy he is playing well at his home tourney. On a side note, I dream holding hands with Stan last night wtf was that!!! I’d rather hold or hug Roger even in my dream :-p

  12. Ah great to be back.

    Kukush came, Kukesh went
    Didn’t make a single dent
    Of course its an early round
    But Fed looks pretty sound

    Nadal came back from the brink
    Mentally tougher now, I do think
    The two champs may just meet
    Which could be a visual treat

    And irrespective of a win or a loss
    Enjoy yourself Mr. Jonathan

    1. Very nice, Murli, soothing comment, most welcome, I like.

      Yes, “Mr. Jonathan”, enjoy yourself, you earn it….may Roger make your day!

    1. *Can* believe Stan is out. I was surprised he seemed to have the beating of Karlovic so easily in the first set. That was always going to be a tricky first round, for him or anyone else.

  13. Ha! I knew Wawrinka would lose to Karlovic from the previous thread and considering Stan has a poor track record at home the last couple of years.

    1. True, although eh did choke that away. You should NEVER lose against Karlovic being a set and break up, especially when you’re someone of Stan’s caliber.

      1. There’s clearly something wrong with Karlovic today: according to the ATP website, he appears only to have served 1 ace in the first set.

  14. Wow Jonathan! You’ve got some pretty nice matches there, between Gasquet vs Thiem And Roger vs Kohli… Good choice!! πŸ˜›

    1. KohlI was pretty damn good though. Won’t blame Roger too much, although he should have made that pass set point down.

      1. PK did play well, and his first serve was working, unlike our Feds. Under 50% in sets 1 and 2 – he was lucky to get that first set. He did pick it up in the third – the crowd helped and he was able to lift his game + Kohly slung in all 2nd serves in the breaker game. I thought this one would be tricky TBH; despite the h2h Kohly does often bring his best when playing Federer. I do hope his 1st serve % picks up. He looked a bit serious at the end; I hope there’s not a problem there. Still, he got the win. Allez! πŸ™‚

      2. Fed didn’t play well really. Just took advantage in set 3. Crowd helped. Both guys guilty of throwing in horrendous service games after holding ones before it so easy. Think Kohli had 3 love holds in a row then got broken.

        Looked like Fed had tape on his back though. Could see it during service motion.

      3. I couldn’t judge any of it from the live scores – stupid ATP site wasn’t telling us anything about the match apart from aces and DFs, so it was really difficult to assess, but that FS % in the first 2 sets was very worrying. And Jon says he has tape on his back – uh-oh.

        Kohli did seem to be playing well, though.

    2. Andrew Burton said he got 1st serve % to 88% in set 3. Worrying about the tape as. You say – can we hope it’s precautionary or is that just not done?

      1. I’ve used tape like that for precautionary measures, but it always came from a little niggle I wanted worked out. Have no clue how the pros do it though haha

  15. Jeeezzzz , this was a horrible match of Roger. He gave Goffin the opportunity to even win this match.
    Luckily he found a bit of a form in the last set.
    But he has too crank up his game to win the next two matches!

    1. Right first serves were not there much. But although he won! He tells he’s tired. Maybe from flu or whatever? Hopefully recovered today…

    2. Certainly wasn’t his best, although there were flashes of brilliance. Let’s not dismiss Goffin either, he’s been improving as a player throughout the year, becoming much more consistent, which is reflected in his No17 ranking. He can produce great shots, so not an easy nut to crack. It’s worrying though that good ‘ole faithful, his first serve, seems to have gone AWOL, and *very* worrying that Jonathan says it looks as though his back is taped. If he’s having problems with the back again, that would certainly answer the question. I think the 1st serve was under 50% in 1st two sets again. πŸ™

      Apart from first match, he’s being made to work hard, but surely he wouldn’t continue if there was a major problem? Let’s not forget it’s been a long and tiring season for him so even though he’s had a good bit of time off since USO, it could all be catching up on him now. This doesn’t bode well for this tournament, or the ones to follow. I hope it’s just a niggle and Feds finds a last burst of energy to finish the year. Allez champ πŸ™‚
      PS. I wish he’d drop that IPTL. I know he’s only doing Dubai where he trains anyway, but seems to me he should be taking the extra rest.

      1. Roger as far as I know is doing dubai,Singapore and india
        I agree goffin in talented and it was great Fed came out on top.Everyone is hoping for a fedal final but I am quite nervous about it

    3. Where did Goffin have the opportunity to win?? Not a great match by a long shot, but Roger produced the goods when he had to, 3rd set was only one way. Screwed up in the second though, I’l give you that.

      Let’s see how he pulls up against Sock, but if he’s meeting Dull in the finals, he’s gonna have to up his game (though I would love to see a Fedal final! πŸ˜€ )

      1. I’d rather see a Fedal final when I’m *not* worried about the state of Roger’s back!

        Anyway, I see we have one.

  16. There is an argument that H2H is so much in favour in Nadal due to more frequent clay court encounters. If that is the case, Federer should win tomorrow (fast indoor Basel), as it is difficult to imagine more favourable conditions for Federer and less favourable conditions for Nadal. If Federer wins, I would think that their H2H paints slightly distorted picture. If he loses, it would mean that Nadal truly owns Federer. No GOAT can afford to be owned by anybody.

    1. Too bad the post USO meetings between Nadal and Federer during Fed’s prime were so few. 35 meetings and this is only their 6th match during this time of the season.

      Also shouldn’t you be spending your time inventing more drugs that can evade the testing system rather than trolling on a Federer fan site?

    2. It’s the first match they have played in over 2 years. Tomorrow doesn’t really change anything for either in terms of head to head. More about Nadal winning Indoors for the first time. And Fed winning yet another Basel title.

      It’s been a bit like Feds shanghai for Nadal. Should have been put away numerous times but makes the final. Close to call, Fed will need to hit his FH on the run better and make sure he doesn’t rescind any breaks of serve. Tough one to call, I’ve seen both guys play this week and neither of them looked great. Gasquet was in the best form but fell short as he often does.

      1. Thanks for all the tidbits Jonathan. Though his FH wasn’t spectacular today, Fed did serve a tad bit better than he’s done in his past few matches so maybe he’s just been cautious. As for Nadal and his knee, he still ran down everything Gasquet threw at him. I think he even broke back immediately after wincing and massaging out his leg.. So yeah.

        Also would you look at that, Fed didn’t lose early after all! Good luck charm? Have fun in the final, hopefully Fed plays well.

    3. Another stupid comment for Jack Torrs.

      [If he loses, it would mean that Nadal truly owns Federer.]

      Really? A 34 year, dad of four, if he were to lose to Nadal tomorrow, would imply he was truly owned? How the fuck did you figure that you fucking dimwit? What do you have for brains? Elephant poop?

      1. I would like to bring to your attention that there are more words than “fuck” you might consider using to articulate your opinion.

      2. It’s only fair that I’ve used it to articulate my opinion. Now fuck off, bitch!

  17. Hello all πŸ™‚ Wow another wonderful record of reaching 10 consecutive finals and 12 overall is just simply fantastic considering that Mr Federer is 34 in Tennis years which should of meant a really steep decline in form etc etc. But Federer defies all stats logic and reasoning! !! All I can say Wow!!! I would really like for Federer to win and I have a feeling that it’s going to either be really close or Federer will win in straight sets. A score line of 6-4 , 6-4 or 7-6 4-6 7-6 in favour of Federer. I have a good feeling so I hope it goes well tomorrow.
    It does feel funny that a Fedal match is going to happen finally as previously Nadal or Federer lost in a previous round therefore the hyped up potential match up would end up like a deflated balloon. Anyway fingers crossed again and I will try not to check the scores as Iffeel like a jinx . So I will check once its finished. Allez Allez. Come on Federer. All the way please. Long live the true king of Tennis. The Greatest of all time! !! You beauty! !! Yes yes yes. The best there was, the best there is, the best there ever will be. …
    Ps that last quote some people who read here regularly may know where I got it from as I was a huge fan of his too. Lol

  18. It’s quite funny that I have watched Rafa’s matches against Cilic and rosol where he gets destroyed by them in the first set and is straight away broken in the second set,then I go to sleep (happy?) as I have to wake up early in the morning.But Rafa scrapes through in 3 sets and finally he has reached the finals .
    After first round I really was hoping for a fedal match as Nadal stumbled and fed looked strong.But for tomorrow I am a little nervous as Fed is not playing that well.
    I pray Fed defeats Nadal in straight sets and wins the seventh title.
    Jonathan ,I read that you have tickets for the finale and you are going to see them live,so enjoy and have a great time and cheer for our champion. I am hoping for a wonderful fan story ?

  19. Fed knows only one thing about Nadal at this stage in his own career.

    He knows he does not know how to play and beat Nadal.

    He hasn’t known how in over 3 years.

    Fed feeds off confidence, order, trajectory, etc. He is not a flukey player and doesn’t think like a flukey player.

    All of this =


  20. Also – happily – Fed is in a win/win situation.

    lose = He is 34 playing a guy who “should have been” close to his prime.

    win = win.

  21. Tomorrow is my birthday so a Fed win–88–with 8 being my fave number (and his too) would be pretty great. FIGHT, Fed! And you will win. It’s your surface, your crowd.

    1. Hoping for a very happy birthday for you tomorrow Emily, and that Feds adds that No.88 icing on the cake. πŸ™‚

      Much better serving from Feds today – over 70% – repeat and win old man. Allez πŸ™‚

  22. Fed wants to deliver to his fans in Basel. No more than that. – The taped back is worrying. Is it time f year, cold Europe etc.? Last year something built up too, culminating in his withdrawal from WTF final.
    I guess we all saw Rafa stealthily eating pills along knee-treatment. So…
    To talk about Rafa owning Federer if Nadal wins tomorrow, is nonsense of course, lack of recent meetings (and other things) considered.

    1. I don’t know a single person that does not think that Nadal owns Federer. I am on Federer side by saying that, if Federer wins tomorrow, this can be questioned. Everybody else thinks that whatever happens tomorrow Nadal owns Federer. If Federer can’t beat Nadal in Basel on fast indoors, where he can beat him?

      1. He can beat him those 10 times.

        He can’t beat him those 23 other times.

        Can’t beat him on clay or when Nadal doesn’t show on HCs cause he loses early. He can win on grass.

        But dude all that is ANCIENT HISTORY.

        He’s 34 dude. 34.

        Nadal is in his TWENTIES.

        FED’S should have no business even coming close to beating Nadal anymore much less being in two GS finals and essentially being the seconds best player in the world 2 years running.

        All just a testament to his stature as the GOAT until proven otherwise.

      2. Jack Torrs, you don’t seem to know many people, except RUAN the Djokovic fan and Nadal fans. To own! Wtf? Nobody can own anybody any more, except where people believes in slavery and superhumans. Does Roger “own” Ferrer inspite of a huge and “perfect” leading in victories? Does he “own” Kohlschreiber? – Why are you writing here? To give some figures (we all know), like a religious fan, who doesn’t want to think and watch himself, only watching figures?

  23. Don’t know if I can watch this live. Nerves can’t take it. I would absolutely love to see our guy lifting the trophy.

    Jonathan, we are expecting a long and detailed account of your adventure in Basel.

  24. @Alb: Federer plays his best these days. He said it himself, Ru-an said it as well as many other experts. Without Djokovic, Federer would have season similar to 2004-7. The only difference is that Djokovic exists now.

    1. And so Jack Torrs? Is this interesting? What is your intention writing here? To tell Djokovic is better? To tell Nadal is better?

    2. Hey Jackie Boy,

      You have 10 units at your disposal, you make use of 7 of them = 70% efficiency. You have 5, you make use of 4.5= 90%. 90>70, but 7>4.5. Doesn’t take an “expert” to understand this, just common sense.

      How many posts by Ruan have you read? Read all posts written in the last one year, digest his arguments, reflect, and then come back here. Hint: Look for arguments of the form “A implies B” in his earlier posts, and “A implies B_complement” in his more recent ones.

  25. It will be a thrill this afternoon. Nadal, the great bull, trying to overpower the gracious, brave and great LEO, we prefer to win. I have to watch at least the beginning…

  26. A set all and Nadal is playing out of his skin on his worst possible surface. Where is the oft-injured over the hill broken down Nadal we have been seeing all year? I have never seen him play this well on an indoor court – usually the worst part of his year. He gets to every ball and returns it with enormous power. Yep – juiced to the hilt. Be ready for another surge at the slams next year. What a farce tennis has become.

    1. I said he’d magically reappear the minute he faced Fed across the net. I reckon I’ve been saying that for at least a year by now πŸ™‚

      Very relieved Fed won. I was watching the gymnastics on TV, so kept trying to check the “live” scores on the text service. Unfortunately, they kept seizing up towards the end of each set. So Fed was 4-3 up in the first, then 5-4 up in the second, and I had no idea what was happening. He won the first, I was willing him to break Rafa in the second, and then when the scores came back he’d suddenly dropped 3 games in a row! What the heck? And I was left stuck at 4-3 in the third, too …

      Looking forward to Jon’s reports when he gets around to them.

      1. I know the feeling Emily. Happy Birthday . Fed delivered. Last year when he won the Davis cup I was celebrating a Bday too. I am so happy for him. Yesssssssss!

      2. Happy Birth Day Emily – and you did get the 88th Icing on the Cake. Yay!

        Feds should have done it in 2, was the better player for most of the second set. Nadal played the best match he has played ALL YEAR – typical!

        Full of tension, and I was swearing a lot after second set. But the champ came good in the end, so I’m happy. πŸ™‚

  27. Roger makes it. But only by the skin of his teeth. He barely beats Nadal on his own best surface, pushed to the limit by the Spaniard on his weakest surface. Roger’s level of game was to be expected – he has always done extremely well here and at this time of year – but what explains Nadal’s resurgence of form, so that he was on the brink of winning his first indoor title in ten years? Nothing can be believed about the Spanish player. Of course he is back – with only one possible explanation for how he does it.

    1. Federer has always brought out the best in Nadal, probably because the h2h gives him that confidence. Let’s not underestimate the power of h2h vis a vis the players – Gasquet should have won his match against Nadal, but didn’t. Ditto on all those players – and there are many – who have hugely negative h2hs against Federer. *He* knows how to bear them, they cannot rid themselves of the monster in their head.

      In the end, he got the win, and that’s all that matters. πŸ™‚

    2. Vs Geasquet Rafa got knee problem. In with therapist and out of bag, pills. Before that Gasquet had the upper hand. But then! – Nadal won in straight sets.
      Same story here today? Roger had the upper hand – then knee problem, in with therapist, on with bandage – and what did he take from his bag? The camera went away, but some may have watched? Anyway, from there the power came on and made Roger look on his heels. Fortunately this time, Federer won.

    3. Let’s be happy for Roger’s win, at his home town, against his nemesis, instead of being pissed off Nadal is getting back in shape?…

      1. Yes the victory was all the sweeter when he won it standing on the dais with Nadal amongst his own people, the fans and Jonathan! #poignantpeRFection.

    4. Richard is somewhat right. Nadal with his injured(?) knee played some long matches this week, he spent much more time on court than Fed. (Nadal’s match time was 11 hours (exc. doubles), and Fed’s was just just over 7 hours) But he still didn’t look tired in the final, he put himself in the position to win on his worst surface. I think a resurgence is on the horizon next year.

      That being said Simon is also right, great win for Roger today. πŸ™‚

  28. I have enjoyed this match. Both players gave their best and it was excellent. Federer does not have psychological problems with Nadal, just a technical one (to control top spin with his backhand). However, this surface is low bounce and Federer has immensely improved his backhand. My conclusion is that H2H is distorted in favour of Nadal by frequent clay court encounters; with more fast indoor matches H2H would be more balanced. It was great game.

    1. So “George” – still trolling here, I see. That is exactly the same comment you have posted in your other identity on the Dopervic blog – where you are clearly more at home, with its wanker author.

      1. I am glad that you read Ru-an blog so intensly. I learned about that blog via this one. I agree with him much more.

      2. Oh yes, JT, we guessed that you agree with Ru-an much more. So you still want to write here? Why? Trying to convince people here? I don’t think you’ll succeed, just create a lot of irritation, but maybe that’s what you want?

      3. Of course you agree, Jack Torrs/George – you are all the same guy, riding on the coat-tails of whoever is the latest winner. Roger attracts genuine fans – unlike the toadies on the Djuicervic blog.

    2. If Fed had lost you would have being yapping a different tune. So fickle minded. It’s no surprise you are follower of that clown Ru-an and you that read his drivel.

    3. I’m not sure why we’re jumping on this comment of Jack’s (Or George is it?) . its actually a very rational and balanced comment. Its something that I’ve maintained on this blog as well in the past. Federer doesn’t have any psychological scars playing Nadal. It’s not his fault that Nadal’s game is his kryptonite. Its just the way things work. When you’re the best everyone tries to figure out a way to beat you. Eventually someone comes along whose game is a perfect foil. Just as Djokovic for Nadal after a few years. And lets not forget that the court speeds haven’t helped his cause.

      And Federer has had negative head to heads with so many players in the past. I think he lost the first seven matches against Hewitt and similarly to Nalbandian. He lost to just about anybody in the juniors. He was prone to falling victim to his temper. Look at him now. The epitome of sportsmanship and conduct on the court. It takes solid mental strength to have become what he is today.

      Had court speeds remained fast and the matches been less frequent on clay, despite his significant handicap in the matchup (lefty top spin to the single handed backhand) we would have seen a very balanced rivalry.

      Didn’t get to see the match. Just saw the scoreline. 34 year old FTW! Woohooo! Needed this for myself.

      1. Gaurav, if you had read his previous comments you would see that he only comes here to piss people off and promote the views expressed on the pro-Dopervic blog. His comments are disingenuous.

  29. Super Goat! Tears in my eyes watching Roger lift the trophy in his hometown with Nadal looking on.

    Jonathan, you lucky dog.

    1. Yeah, it was great wasn’t it Sue. And Jonathan must have breathed a sigh of relief. If Federer had lost he would never have heard the end of it. πŸ˜†

  30. A crucial victory for Federer. The support from the hometown crowd was a double-edged sword: yes, they certainly helped lift him up but conversely he felt immense pressure to deliver a victory for them. Plus Nadal was milking the whole underdog schtick for all it was worth (I’m still injured, this isn’t my best surface, the crowd will be with my opponent, blah blah blah). Had Federer failed to overcome Nadal in his hometown and on his best surface, it would have been very difficult for him psychologically going forward.

    IMO Nadal played even better than in their encounter in London 2010 which was one of Nadal’s best-ever indoor tournaments; that Federer, aged 34, was able to overcome the insane retrieving and heavy spin and book his first victory over his nemesis in 3 1/2 years speaks volumes about his passion for the game and remarkable skills. It was obvious what winning the title in front of his home crowd meant to him; after all, he was a ballboy at this tournament over two decades ago and coming from such humble beginnings to become the seven-time champ must be very special for him.

    Nadal didn’t win the second set so much as Federer lost it through letting his concentration falter. It was very important for Federer not to panic after the second set–had he gotten frustrated, the momentum would have shifted decisively Nadal’s way.

    Once Federer refocused and returned to his attacking game plan, Nadal was forced to try to take the ball earlier and go for too much and his game broke down in the decisive moments, as it always does when his opponent can attack with sufficient consistency. Federer’s returning was very aggressive and it was key for the win. He’ll take a lot of confidence from this victory.

    This will help ease the sting of losing in Shanghai and set him up well for Paris. In 2011 he went undefeated during the entire fall indoor HC run. I hope he can do the same again and put together a great finish to the season and use it as a launching pad for 2016.

    C’mon Roger!

  31. Thanks Jack. Now f*** off – we aren’t interested in your comments

    Thought it was a good game – both played well. Nadal gracious at the end. I always like him more tho when he’s lost.

      1. What are you guys being so polite for? Remember, this is the tosser who said he could have helped the great cheat Lance Armstrong. Says everything about him.

      2. I second Ajay. Which means I third Ian. πŸ™‚

        Richard, what was that about, “help Armstrong”? Who said that? And why?

      3. Sid, read his comments at the end of Jonathan’s post about Fed’s loss to Vinolas whoever at Shanghai. He boasts that if Lance Armstrong had come to him for ‘help’ he wouldn’t have needed to use EPO’s because whatever it is that he makes would have been so much more effective. Check it out.

  32. Finally the curse is over: I watched Federer win a final against Nadal. This only shows that being superstitious brings nothing but bad luck. Not only that but also Sousa won his 1st. ATP500. O joy, on days like this the forces of Good conspire to put things on the proper rails.

    1. [ I particularly didn’t expect such reaction from Federer fans that I assumed to be well mannered people]

      A shepherd must fight off the wolf, when needed. I will strike thee down with great vengeance, those who troll here.

  33. @muser: I just tried to be polite. I didn’t expect that a slightly different opinion expressed in a polite manner would result in hostile responses from some posters and use of inappropriate language. I particularly didn’t expect such reaction from Federer fans that I assumed to be well mannered people. I am open-minded without any particular preconceived agenda and, as I said prior to the game, if X happens I will think Y and if Y happens I will think X. I posted today just to say what my conclusions are after watching the game (as I thought that this would be only fair as commented before the game) and they are favourable to Federer. I wrote my conclusions here and on some other blogs that are not so pro-Federer. Overall, I don’t feel that commenting on this blog is for me. Not that I am afraid disagreeing with someone, but this is not what I expected in terms of language and level of discussion. I am happy that I will stop reading and commenting on this blog.

  34. Hey Jonathan, you are now officially approved as Fed’s good luck charm by us PT clan. So go to every tournament from now on, please. Next, Paris! But before that is Basel recap!

    1. +1 Wanda πŸ™‚
      Jonathan finally got rid of the curse he brought on Fed every time he goes to a tournament AND Fed finally had his long due victory over Nadal πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚

      Let’s pray now for a 2011 like finish to the season πŸ˜‰

  35. Come on, gifts and girls. Leave Jack/George please. If you dislike him, just don’t react to his posts. Stick to the nice comments and discussions we tend to have here most of the time.
    And certainly leave out any misplaced words.

    Back to today’s match. I thought Roger did not play good. He was too afraid of Nadal. Because of that in many cases he wasn’t offensive whilst he should be. Many half court balls by Nadal he should have attacked, but instead he stayed back.
    On the other hand: it was good to see that he played quite often the backhand down the line to avoid these awful high balls on his backhand side…

    Overall I’m thrilled he won! Number 88!

    1. [ I particularly didn’t expect such reaction from Federer fans that I assumed to be well mannered people]

      A shepherd must fight off the wolf, when needed. I will strike thee down with great vengeance, those who troll here.

  36. Hey Guys, I just woke up and, heart in mouth, checked the scores. Fantastic. Fed won. I was too worried and the time shift meant I couldn’t watch live but now, wI ill really enjoy watching the replay.
    However, not so pleased about some of the unnecessary vitriol spoiling what should be a purely happy moment. Let’s just enjoy the win, please.
    And let’s hope he can get through Murray etc in Paris.
    Allez, encore

  37. Yay FED!!!!!

    Watched the reply. Some nerves, some clutch courage, consistently strong. Nadal was a little off his game here and there, but always brave and dangerous stuff from the Spaniard. Overall solid excellence from Fed with a heap of winners and strong serving when needed.

    Great job Fed!!!

  38. Hey guys. Didn’t get to see the match so question- what was Federer’s primary pattern of play with his backhand? Was he continuously trying to go down the line to find Nadals backhand or was he ripping cross courts to the Nadal forehand as is what Djokovic does?

    I’m not sure I understand the down the line strategy especially since the hard cross court to the Nadal forehand is a proven strategy now. For starters the down the line is a higher risk shot. And at the height that the Nadal ball comes in, Federers down the line backhands consequently have little on them to trouble Nadal.

    I still remember the last game in the Cinci quarter in 2013. Federer started really ripping the cross courts and it instantly got him break points. Lower risk, a more effective shot and a proven strategy.

    1. To trouble Nadal with the CCBH, you have to hit it hard/ deep consistently. Fed isn’t really able to do that. He’s trying to keep it Dull’s backhand and wait for a weaker reply to ruin around, was the pattern I saw.
      Although he hit little (maybe actually none) BH winners DTL, most agressive ones went cross court, be seems to me he was mostly going to Dull’s BH with his.

    2. A combination of things. He did rip some cross courts, on shorter ball specifically. His down the lines were loopier, and deeper, and some of them won him key points. But more than anything, Roger was, as usual, playing very early, and as is typical with such courts, didn’t give Nadal enough time. He won quite a bit at the net, about 25 points (with nearly 70% success). None more important than the volley at 40-40 in the last game was just too good, and a tad lucky.

      We forget AO 2014 was the last, and only time I think Roger played with a bigger frame vs Nadal. So, he had plenty of time to get comfortable with it. Still, Nadal played really well for an indoor court, and almost got this one.

      1. Bigger frame, huge difference. No way Fed could’ve won yesterday without that new stick. Remember 2013 WTF with the older frame? Straight sets loss to Nadal. Indoors!

      2. Also as pointed out on that article, he haven’t done his favorite Chip return at all (Just 2 times)……I haven’t noticed that while watching match but that sums up the effort/training put up to win match…..

      3. UGGGHH 2013 straights loss to Nadal.





        Thanks Sid.

      4. That was indeed an interesting article. I realise I’ve not actually had much chance to watch Fedal matches over the years – recently only AO 2014, WTF 2013 (I think), and snatched a few glimpses of their Cincy match on YT, so I’m not really any expert on how their matches play out. But interesting to see that Fed *can* prevent himself from slicing returns to Nadal if he tries, although I’d guess it may be mentally quite difficult, since it sounds as though it may have become almost a learned response. So now Rafa has to train himself out of expecting sliced returns from Fed – I wonder how long that will take, and what he’ll come up with next to counter that.

  39. Did anyone see Nadal obviously checking his watch and making a sarcastic expression (amidst the OCD head-tics)? I thought he had more class than that.

    1. Yeah, I noticed that, Emily. Right when Roger was speaking.

      Sid, I was thinking about the bigger racket during this match. Definitely helps against Nadull. Everyone plays good tennis against the Goat.

      What a great day for us hard core Fed fans.

    2. I went back and watched the ceremony to see what Rafa was doing and it was classless. I don’t speak German or French either, but I would never do what he did. It was disrespectful and petty which is why he lost.

      1. I read the reaction to what Rafa did and some people had the nerve to justify it. Roger’s speech was not long. I stand my statement. He was classless for doing it.

      2. I am surprised Nadal didn’t call for an MTO during Roger’s speech – like he usually does when things aren’t going his way. Maybe he needed to head off for more of his ‘special treatments’ he has for his knees, since he was so injured again during the match.

      3. That’s pretty pathetic to justify Rafa’s actions by saying Federer was talking to long even though he’s standing in the guy’s home country. How long is his contract with Basel because I always questioned his participation at this tournament. I want Basel to be successful and have good players playing but I wish he go play somewhere else.

  40. But to Nadal’s credit, he participated in the medal ceremony with the ball boys/girls, and looked to be having a good time. It’s easier to appreciate him after a Fed win!

    1. I like to watch Roger play and enjoy his wins. I prefer to watch Nadal lose to a succession of nobodies outside the top 100, like Dustin Brown, Lukas Rosol or a Steve Darcis. So much more humiliating for him.

    2. He HAD to participate in the medal ceremony. Try as I might, I don’t appreciate him. At least Uncle Toni said congrats to Roger’s dad.

  41. Can’t wait for Jonathan’s next post. The draw for RF at Paris looks decent–but we all know how much stock to put in draws…

    1. Thanks for sharing this wonderful video
      I became a huge Fed fan when he had 67 titles and could relate to all of them afterward.,Except for the grandslam celebrations which I have seen countless times,I never have seen Federer’s title wins when he was young and so it was a joy to watch?

    2. Everyone will retain a special bit from this saga: mine is realizing the amount of players that have come and gone and Roger is still there. He defeated the best from the previous generation, from his own and from the next one. And it’s not over yet.

    3. Another tacky detail (only fans would notice it): was it at about his 36th title that Roger signed a sponsorship contract with Gillette? He, he, he!

    1. My guess is that Jon’s still wandering at Basel airport’s Duty Free Shop trying to find a nice Swatch model to offer to Nadal. His seems to be running a bit odd…

      1. Or being in a shock to have found out he’s got RF tattoo on his forehead in the morning after the celebration in Basel πŸ˜†

  42. I think Jonathan has run off with Mirka. I didn’t see her at the match.

    I know London has heavy fog, maybe he’s been redirected to Manacor.

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