Grand SlamsRoger FedererWimbledon

Fleet of Foot Federer Makes 11th Wimbledon Final

Roger Federer will play in his 11th final at All England Club after overcoming big hitting Tomas Berdych 7-6(4), 7-6(4), 6-4 in Friday's second semi final.

The Swiss is yet to drop a set at SW19, and he now has a chance to go for a record eighth Wimbledon title and 19th Grand Slam in Sunday's showpiece. In his way will be Marin Cilic, who ended the run of Sam Querrey of 7-6(6), 4-6, 7-6(3), 7-5 earlier in the day.

Quick Match Recap

Federer Wimbledon 2017 Semi Final

Federer won the toss and elected to receive. In doing so, the Swiss was able put Berdych through his paces early, holding a break point in a multiple deuce game before Berdych held.

Roger quickly levelled for 1-1, and in game five he came up with some beautifully constructed points and a bullet forehand on break point to go up 3-2. The seven-time champ then consolidated for 4-2, but in game eight he was the architect of his downfall, sending down two double faults as Berdych broke back for 4-4.

At 5-5 Roger had two chances to restore his advantage but Berdych came up with some big serves to make 6-5. The set then went into a tie break.

Into the breaker and a chip charge put Fed up a mini break at 3-1. However, Berdych hit back with an excellent return of his own for 3-4 but missed an easy forehand to slip to 3-5 and Roger took the set 7-4.

The first set was always more important for the Czech, and he was soon under pressure in set 2. But to his credit, he held firm to hold for 2-2. In game 7 Roger made his fifth unsuccessful challenge of the day in slipping to 0-30. The Swiss won the next three points but had to save a break point to move 4-3 in front. Both players were then able to hold comfortably to force another tie break.

Into the breaker and a ridiculous forehand return gave Federer a mini break. Another sick forehand put him up 5-1, but a double fault relinquished one of the breaks for 5-3, however, Berdych couldn't find a way back, dropping a third point on serve to lose it 7-4.

Two sets to the good meant Federer had one foot in the final, but Berdych didn't give in easily. Creating 0-30 in Roger's first game and he continued to hit his forehand well to keep the scoreline close.

In game 5 Roger fashioned a break point at 30-40 but netted a forehand which brought out a ‘Scheisse man' cry. Berdych held, and it gave him a boost of confidence as he created 15-40 on Roger's next service game. Roger's response? Ace 30-40, Ace Deuce, Advantage, Ace game Federer. Clutch!

From huge confidence boost, Berdych was undoubtedly wondering what just happened after he was on the verge of breaking serve and Roger hammered home his advantage, coming up with a great return off a big 2nd serve to break for 4-3. A love hold put him up 5-3, and although Berdych dug deep to force Roger to serve it out, he did so to 15 to book his spot in the final.

Match Stats

Match Statistics R. Federer T. Berdych
Aces 13 9
Double Faults 4 0
First Serve % In 70/105 (67%) 79/128 (62%)
Win % On 1st Serve 59/70 (84%) 54/79 (68%)
Win % On 2nd Serve 21/35 (60%) 28/49 (57%)
Net Points Won 23/31 (74%) 20/36 (56%)
Break Points Won 2/9 (22%) 1/6 (17%)
Receiving Points Won 46/128 (36%) 25/105 (24%)
Winners 53 31
Unforced Errors 20 19
Total Points Won 126 107
Distance Covered (Ft) 6557.2 6547
Distance Covered/pt. (Ft) 28.1 28.1
SABR 0 0


Thoughts on the Match

Fed Berdych SF 2017 Wimbledon

An 11th Wimbledon final awaits for Federer, and he's yet to drop a set. While he's been the form player of 2017, it's still difficult to comprehend that he's playing this well, and it seemed unlikely he would be contesting slam finals after his injury last year, but here he is with a chance to win a 19th on Sunday.

Today was another great match. We saw on occasion where he looked a little nervous/tense, which prevented him having a brilliant serving day but he had that focus when it mattered to keep Berdych at bay. Those aces down break points in the third set were top drawer, especially after he netted the makeable forehand on a break point in the previous game. It would have been easy to panic there, but he dug in and won the points that mattered to come through.

And I quite like the fact he's got a bit of nerves too. He looked almost nonchalant vs. Murray in the Semi Finals in 2015 then didn't quite deliver in the final. So I'll take a bit of tension in the arm all day long if it means a better showing come Sunday πŸ™‚

As for Berdych, I thought it was a spirited performance. He chased down a tonne of balls out there, crunched his forehand and volleyed nicely too when he needed to. He'll probably rue that missed forehand in the first set breaker which is the set he needed to win, but over three sets he was second best and can't have too many complaints.

Predictions vs. Cilic

Fed Forehand Berdych Wimbledon

So the opponent for the final is Cilic who defeated Querrey in 4 sets in the first semi final. Querrey had played three five setters in a row so probably wasn't the freshest, but he made a fist of it, going up a break in the fourth only to let things slip and allow Cilic to take advantage of too many missed first serves.

Cilic has had a great grass court season making the final at Queens, and we know from the US Open where he blew Federer away how destructive his game can be so he's certainly going to be a tough test in the final.

Roger has the edge over him on grass beating him in five from two sets down last year which given the circumstances was pretty monumental. He also leads the H2H 6-1, has spent less time on the court these past two weeks, and playing Berdych is quite a good prep for another flat power hitter, so there are quite a few things in his favour heading in.

Cilic, however, is a guy capable of catching fire and the way he hits the ball from both wings makes him very dangerous. We all know how Roger needs to play and it will likely boil down to his serve, his slice/variation and movement. If those are on song I like his chances.


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. Today’s match was though byt I think beating Cilic can be more difficult. Anyway Well I hope he gets the 19rh Sunday ?.

  2. Thanks for the write up Jonathan. Here’s hoping 19 come Sunday! Berd came to play today and Fed looked a little tense at times but came up clutch when he needed it. Crossing my fingers for Sunday but I also think the succession of Raonic and Berdych provided Fed with some nice preparation for the looming battle with Cilic. I’d like to see him utilize his full variety and slice a bit more to keep the big Croat from settling into the match, of course serve and ROS will be huge.

  3. I knew I should have looked for this a while ago! A distinctly nervy Roger was my opinion from what I heard on the radio, not surprisingly.

    1. BBC? Why do they need like a team of 10 people to commentate a match? I had Cilic on for a bit – Wilander, Fuller, Law, Goran, Eleanor somebody, Overend and more. Crazy.

  4. Thanks Jonathan. A very tense match throughout. As a whole, a good match but on occasions Roger’s choices of shots selection were strange – did not choose the easy ones so as to have made a mess of them. A full credit to Berdych whose serve was very clutchy on BPs. This was easily one of the best matches Berdych played for a long while.
    On Sunday, Roger will need to draw Cilic to the net where Cilic feels a bit uncomfortable. No more lobs please. Cilic stayed about 5 feet behind the baseline most of times in Querray match. A bit more use of court will do nicely. Judging Cilic from this SF match, Roger should beat him in straight sets, or 4 sets most. Cilic could certainly hit big from sharp angles but he also showed lots of nerves today. On Sunday, he will even more nervous. 6 down one to go.
    Allez Rog!

    1. Cheers. Yeah a few moments where he perhaps wasn’t feeling loose enough to try something daring. Although he did go for 2 ridiculous droppers that were miles away. On the third he wont the point though πŸ™‚

      Cilic playing well, gotta move him around so he ends up slapping the ball rather than getting set to rip it. Breaks down when that happens.

  5. Great write up! It’s all here! I was there and Jon is right, definite nerves at times. Clutch on big points, lots of definite nervous tension, as there Shld be, it’s a Slam SF!! His serve was patchy at times as he went thru a stage in the 2nd set when 1st serve went awol! Luckily Berdy’ s 1st serve disappeared in the breaker! Such is pressure!
    Cilic might be weary and he hasn’t played Slam final at Wimby before. V different occasion to USO. Rog beat him on 1 leg last year so I do expect Rog to come thru on grass but Marin cld edge a set!
    Go get that Pineapple Rog!

  6. I thought it was a decent but not brilliant performance from Roger today, and having been able to watch both semis today, if you didn’t know the background of both players you would probably make Cilic the favourite in the final. He reminded me of how strong he can be off both wings and his court coverage was excellent.

    Roger played very well when it mattered but there were some alarming shot choices and ropey execution during the match as well. An opponent who believed in himself more might have taken at least one set off Fed today but thankfully Berdych couldn’t quite do that.

    The serve will be key in the final to getting Rog some cheap points, but he’ll have to do everything well to beat Cilic who seems to be close to his peak at the moment. As Jonathan said, a bit of variety will be necessary to negate some of the big hitting and a solid defence to make a hopefully nervous Cilic play the extra point. Rog will be nervous too, but if his serve is good it can help settle him down and the rest of his game can flow.

    It’s going to be a tight encounter and not one I think I am going to enjoy watching! I don’t think it will be straight sets either way, but if Rog can find his ‘A’ game early and impose himself on Cilic, then he can get his nose in front and build a platform for victory.

    1. If Fed serves well I think he will get plenty freebies, Berdych a better returner I think.

      Wonder if Cilic going 5 then 4 makes a difference. Not being the longest matches I guess.

  7. Hi guys, long time no post from me. First of all I’d like to make a quick point about Ruan’s Ultimate Tennis Blog (formerly Ruan’s Federer Blog). As many others were at one stage, I used to follow his blog quite a lot as well as this one, so I feel like I can explain how his site went downhill. Ruan was never the hero worship sort of tennis blogger, and to be honest that was one of the best things about his site, you could make a reasonable criticism of one of Federer’s matches and not be shouted down by an angry lynch mob (not saying that is the case here, but it certainly is on some other sites).

    He gradually seemed to warm to Djokovic, and it was no great surprise when he changed the blog name and then began to support Djokovic. Initially he was very respectful of the remaining Federer fans such as myself, but then he became more and more aggressive. More and more of his posts were dedicated to so-called FedFans, who he said were ruining the sport by overly aggressively supporting Federer. To be honest, that was a fair criticism, there was a fair amount of blind fanaticism and trolling on that site. But eventually, he began to clamp down on any ‘dissenters’ from the Djokovic-supporting line of the site, even though it retains the ostensibly neutral title ‘Ultimate Tennis Blog’. I and most other Federer fans gradually felt more and more excluded, and one by one we all stopped actively commenting on his site. Only a few Federer fans still post, and he has also taken to randomly banning people for seemingly any reason. I can no longer post for some reason, I assume because I have been blocked, and was never informed as to why, nor was I ever personally insulting towards Ruan in any way. I have heard of similar incidents from other Federer fans on that site as well.

    Then we come onto his so-called blog post about the Wimbledon QF results. Admittedly the decision not to schedule Djokovic-Mannarino on Centre in the R16 was pretty silly, we have seen examples of that in many tournaments affecting other players, from the ‘Super Saturday’ (or as I prefer to call it Shitty Saturday) scheduling at the USO, or delays due to the lack of a god damn roof at the FO. Ruan then decides to turn the entire post into some ridiculous conspiracy theory, alleging that somehow Wimbledon is rigged to prevent Novak from winning, and that it was a deliberate decision to disadvantage him in favour of other players. Not only that, but he then extrapolates that to politics, saying that the entire system is rigged (even as a lefty myself, it’s a bit silly to use a scheduling decision at Wimbledon to talk about the evils of the system). He then essentially admits to a temporary ragequit from blogging unless Federer loses, and he plans to ‘celebrate’ if he does!

    Anyone who wants to read his exact words if you don’t believe the staggering downfall in his site feel free to read the article. It’s batshit insane.

    Anyway, enough time spent talking about that. I’ve been following most of Roger’s matches on live scores, but been unable to actually watch them as I’ve been too busy lately, but from what I have seen he seems once again to be playing some seriously impressive tennis. I only hope he can convert against Cilic, not only to add the 19th GS and become all-time Wimbledon title leader outright and give himself a clear shot at no.1 ranking, but also to shut up all the trolls once again. I am looking forward to laughing at what shit Ruan decides to post on his so-called blog next! I can’t believe that guy used to run a serious, authoritative and interesting tennis blog and has now just devolved into a hate fest.

    Prediction for Sunday (I’ll give it in probabilities)

    Easy Federer win (3 sets): 30%
    Hard-fought Federer win (4 or 5 sets): 40%
    Hard-fought Cilic win (4 or 5 sets): 20%
    Easy Cilic win (3 sets): 10%

    To end with, as Federer once said against Tsonga at the AO (2013 IIRC):

    1. Thanks for your long post! I’m really feeling confident about Sunday. So much so (and I hope I’m not jinxing it) that I’m almost more nervous about whether he will win the tournament without dropping a set than whether he will win it!

      Re Ruan, it happens, people go crazy. I’ve read the article in question, and he’s got to the point of fanaticism, the point of “my guy can do no wrong” – but it’s his blog. It’s his right to free speech. Unfortunately, this is just that time you have to give up on someone.

    2. Yes, I agree with this – ironically I only found out about this blog after reading Ru-an’s. In the recent blog post there are contradictory statements – for example saying things the Federer only won the AO because the courts were sped up – even though the courts are made in December and it wasn’t even clear if he would play (and Djokovic has benefited a lot from slower AO courts). He even had a very tough draw, facing Berdych, Murray (although he lost) Nishikori, Wawarinka, Nadal there whereas Djokovic lost to Istomin in round 3. Someone pointed this out and then he replied saying Federer had also lost to a guy ranked outside 100 (Donskoy and HaasI guess). Fine, but not in a Grand Slam.
      I agree that Djokovic was treated badly re. the scheduling, although you can’t just move people to CC – people pay for tickets to CC and C1 separately so who gets to watch ? Anyway to go form there to believing in a huge conspiracy is not rational. Djokovic was just unfortunately injured, and having an extra day of rest was not going to heal an injury he’s had apparently for a year (!)

      There was then several comments from people claiming Federer took 6 months off to start doping (!?) which is the reason he came back so strongly.

      Anyway if I want to waste my time I might as well watch highlights of Fed-Cilic USO 2014 SF (!)

      I think it will be a tough match and I would take nothing form granted. Federer will have nerves naturally, and Cilic will be firing with nothing to lose. The good news is that Muller pushed him to 5 sets.

    3. And just like Federer let’s give full credit to Jonathan for staying the course, producing amazing quality reports, super headlines and offering us involvement in describing Roger, by maintaining interest through the open forum on match days, the blog, tweets and so forth.

      This site is such a gift to share the highs and lows with people who love Tennis and Roger particularly and Jonathan is federesque in his dedicated efforts to make it such a success. Thank you Jonathan for all you do and everyone who contributes the insight and quality on here is a joy to read

      For me Roger has already triumphed by just being there Sunday, again valiantly upholding all that is good about Tennis and sportsmanship as the true champuon we already know he is!

      Go Fed!!!!

      1. Champion* I can’t even spell in a short para no wonder I’m in awe of Jon and Fed for their talents!

      2. I’ve always found this blog to be especially useful to maintain perspective after a tough loss. Numerous times I’ve been devastated only to visit this site, read the match report and end up not feeling so bad about it. I find a lot of blogs tend to react emotionally, which is nice for a short while to see like-minded takes but doesn’t really help in the long term.

      3. Jon, don’t even joke about it…. all our most important goal for the next couple of years should be….. KEEP MIRKA HAPPY πŸ™‚
        If Mirka is happy, Roger is happy and will play and we all will be happy πŸ™‚
        Lets start a group: how to keep Mirka happy so she will allow Roger to play further πŸ™‚

        But seriously… Roger doesn’t need to worry about Mirka telling him to stop. When he beat Berdy, she had some tears in her eyes. It means so much to Roger, but also to her. It makes her happy to see him play and win. She won’t let him stop…

    4. Why do you guys keep visiting Ruan’s site and giving him clicks. I used to follow him around 3-4 years ago and his site led me here too. But now it is nothing more than a cult group run by what looks like a sociopath.
      I would suggest none of us visit his site contributing clicks and ad revenue to him.

    5. hey guys, I have been a dedicated follower of this blog for years but never commented, mainly because i had been such a fervent commenter on Ru-an’s blog before. i loved his insights and was able to take in the bit of crazy that was always there. i had a soft spot for him since as a gay man i just see all the signs of a guy not able to come out, call me crazy, but i know how hard that can be. So i even paid for his blog subscription once since he couldn’t pay for it (i think it was €9 at the time…).
      Then around 2012 when serena (my other great love) came back he started throwing out some racist rants about her. I e-mailed back and forth with him but he stuck to it so i completely gave up on the blog.
      When i found out later he’d made a 180 and was now an uber-fan of Djokovic (whom i love by the way) i was shocked but not surprised. not only is he a bit mental, he also just wants to follow the winner. he has even said that after the AO of 2009 he seriously considered becoming a Nadal fan – who was always the object of his hate before (and after). so logically he became a Novak fan in 2015/16. Now that the old master is back in charge and his choice seems to have been the wrong one, made in clear view of all his readers, he has nowhere else to go but crazy – that’s where the conspiracies pop up.
      Anyway since this is my first and maybe last post here, let me just thank you Jonathan for all the amazing write-ups. Keep it up, don’t go crazy, don’t switch to Zverev too soon (i think we’ll all have to eventually). Can’t wait for the amazing post tomorrow ;)!

      1. Hey Kendu,

        Cheers for commenting.

        Kind of you to pay for the blog hosting.

        And no plans to switch to Zverev πŸ˜‰ I’m not actually a fan, he’s a good player but boring style with OTT reactions / come ons. Not my style.

    6. You are right about Ruan. I unsubscribed from his column awhile ago for all the reasons you mentioned.

    7. Hi,

      Like you, I used to get pretty upset with Ru-an because he pretty much sold out to the dark side. I think that he was still a Federer fan up until his loss to Cilic in the 2014 US Open. After that loss he gave up hope. After Roger lost in the 3rd round of the 2015 Australian Open, he quickly and conveniently jumped ship and joined the glory-hunting with Djokovic. He must have enjoyed when Djokovic kept winning at Roger’s expense. At one point he stated how Novak “owns” Roger, etc.

      What an idiot. At some point, I just began to ignore him. There was no point. He was truly lost. An ungrateful SOB if you ask me. In any case, Roger is slowly and surely making him eat his words while he slowly slips the dagger in for all his disrespectful tone and language.

      I hope that Roger wins tomorrow to completely shut him down for good. ?☺️??☝️

  8. Tough match and super glad RF came through in straights. With a cold, a 5 set SF was the last thing he needed. It was clear he so wanted to finish it in 3.

    No onto the main event in RF’s decorated career.

    1. I thought he was feeling better already. I hope he is back to 100% by Sunday. Hopefully no other physical issues either.

      Roger will also have the added motivation of not only winning the record 8th but also by being the second man to win the Wimbledon trophy without dropping a set since Bjorn Borg did it 1976.

      1. Alison, I think one of the questions in press said that he had done it before, but the reporter wasn’t more specific, & sounds like he may have been plain wrong.

      2. Thinker, the question at the presser was, has he reached the Wimbledon final without dropping a set before 2017. The answer is yes, twice! Roger wasn’t aware of it though.

        2006: Won the final where he dropped one set.
        2008: Lost the final in five.
        2017: Vily, you think this could be the year? πŸ™‚

      3. To me, winning it would be amazing. Winning it in straights is just gravy.

        If he plays like today, he’ll definitely drop a set.

        If he produces a performance similar to the 2015 Semi-Final against Murray, then straights it will be.

      4. Ah, thanks Sid, didn’t occur to me they’d be talking about up to but not including the final.

  9. Roger supposedly learns from previous matches so clearly him coming back from 2 sets down against Cilic last year hopefully have thought him to not take this guy lightly.

    I agree about the backhand slice because that can throw Cilic off of his rhythm. Roger will need to vary his serve and do a serve and volley in order to win his service games at ease.

    It will be difficult but after losing 2 Wimbledon Finals, it’s time to finally get his hands on the Gentleman’s Single Trophy again.


  10. I am glad Fed came through even though he didn’t seem to quite have it today. It is a win in those circumstances that is so important in a grand slam where you have to cobble together seven victories. Love your site by the way and appreciate your summaries. Go Roger!

    1. Thanks πŸ™‚

      I’d take a scrappy win all day long. I have a feeling if he’d broken first game (that ridiculous flicked pass landed just wide when he went down the line) he might have just steam rolled Berdych. But Berdy stuck around so good to see him fend him off.

    1. Hey Sue, watching Ivan watch Roger’s & Berdy’s match…. I actually thought Ivan wouldn’t make it…. I was worried if he even was breathing…. he was SOOOOOOO nervous πŸ™‚ Poor guy…. Welcome to beeing a Roger Federer Fan πŸ™‚ But thanks for all you do Ljubi πŸ™‚

    2. How did you do that Sue? Can’t find a ‘create an account’ button…. and are you in US or Can?

  11. Couldn’t watch, but did find some highlights ( I have had to learn to not say “I’ll watch that later” about highlights) – agree that Berdych seemed to be moving & playing very well indeed so for Roger to come through in straight sets in spite of some apparent glitches and his continuing cold is a very good sign. Jonathan, any ideas about his double faults? He never gives up a break on a double fault. Is it because he’s trying to go for more on his first serve? For Sunday, agree that the signs look very promising. I don’t want to get too excited in advance – one game at a time. But… Oh my gosh, wouldn’t this be just grand?

    1. Not sure, I just thought he looked quite tense. Not as loose on serve as he can be so maybe that’s why he threw in some doubles. Hard to say.

  12. Great post Jon. My lifespan go shorten a lot just watching that match. Berdych played as well as he could by going to Roger’s FH and solid groundies. Roger got pushed and full of nerves but his serve was clutch at key moments. Its so funny Tim and Boris guessing Roger’s serving spot. By playing 2 successive big hitters, I believe Roger will be well prepared against Cilic. Its important for him to stay calm, maintain focus and execute his gameplan. Cilic is a man with a mission, I hope Roger can counter it by throwing junk. FOCUS AND HOLD!!! Let’s do this Roger!!!!

    1. Haha it’s not the matches, it’s the waking up at 1.30am Malaysia time to watch πŸ™‚

      I had that on commentary as well, where’s he going Tim? Out wide. They got all three wrong in a row πŸ˜€

  13. Not a bad match for Fed. I think the cold bothered him a bit today… Cilic will be a hard opponent but Fed can beat him. Fed just needs to be really solid in every aspect of his game. I can sense #19 coming… Mark my words everyone. πŸ˜‰

  14. Scrappy match right before the important final is how I prefer it for Rog. Good mention of that 2015 semi where he put up a JesusFed performance but didn’t quite replicate the same in the final. He’d need his serve on point, no multiple DFs in a game again and variation is key. Cilic moves alright tho and plays better on the run on the run than Berdych so Rog will need better approaches I thought he was a bit too casual in some of his net rushes against Tomas. That Cilic forehand has been on fire just like it was during US Open 2014, so there is plenty to be wary about.

    1. Yeah Cilic deffo a threat. I think Berdych is a better returner though. Cilic forehand great if you give him time, if he’s rushed then he kinda slaps at the ball. I’m sure Fed, Ivan and Luthi all know the score, just about executing.

  15. Thanks for thoughts, Jonathan, and sober information from Universal123 about Ruan. Why Ruan’s turned to hate and envy Roger, is still a riddle though, but to seek signs of rigging and making up conspiracy to confirm paranoia – to create enemies overall to excuse the hero’s failing – this is quite near to normal for a true fan, we have some emotional posts similar to this here too, – mostly in a quite pleasant/ok and entertaining way! – But to build a whole blog on that, seems to me over the edge and solely interesting as information of a mental case.

    1. Perhaps Ru-an is not as strong, loyal and perseverant enough as the rest of us fans. We had to wait 5 long years for Number 18 and now we are on the verge of Number 19.

      He wasn’t as strong so the moment he felt that Roger could never ever win again, he jumped ship. We continue to support him, suffered and in the end we were rewarded. Even more meaningful and powerful memories than jumping ship to the next best thing.

      I bet he’ll probably jump on the next best thing in due time. The definition of a glory hunter!

  16. Hello Jonathan. Hello all fellow Federer fans. I have read almost every post that has been written by Jonathan since I came to know about this blog 2 years ago. I am thankful to Jonathan for the fact that he manages to express what millions of Federer fans think after a great Federer performance as well as what most of us feel after a not so great outing. Hats off to you sir!!

    Coming to the match, I agree with Jonathan that Federer having faced some tough moments in the SF and probabily some nerves too is in fact doing to do good to his chances on Sunday. This will help him focus more and prepare a mote robust gameplan for Sunday. Berdych had an interesting strategy of going to Federers forehand most of the times, I wonder if it is due to the analysis of his now stronger backhand, and avoiding the exchanges at that front or it was a deliberate plan to break the strength of Federers game and try to take advantage of it. I personally feel that Federers backhand is going to do some damage in the finals, even if his forehand is attacked by a powerful shotmaker in Cilic.

    See you all tomorrow and hope, the result is what our wishes are. May the better player on the day win. And may the better player be Federer 365 days a year.

    1. Thanks for the comment.

      Yeah good point about Berdych going into the forehand with strength. Actually worked a bit for him.

      Hope Fed feeling ok, reading on Twitter it’s a sinus infection.

      1. Yuck, those are nasty, especially in the current temperature conditions. And they tend to give you an almighty headache along with everything else.

  17. Roger is -450 favorite to Cilic +400 by the bookmakers.

    I hope for once that the bookies will be correct!

  18. Everybody is talking Cilic is this cilic is that…Why so many hoo-ha about this man. Roger can straight sets him, a reverse to what happened to him in US open semifinal. The key is 70% first serve in, Pile driving backhand return, Slicing to Cilic’s forehand, mixing the game with variety like drop shots. Rest of the things will fall in place for Roger. So, My prediction is Roger to win Wimbledon final against Marian Cilic in three straight sets to clinch his record 8th trophy here.

    1. Fed has managed to serve at over 70% just once in 6 matches. If he serves at over 70% (and at his usual pace) he will win easily.

      The problem is that it’s very difficult if not impossible for a guy to sustain serving at that % when you are 6ft 1 and trying to serve at 120mph into the corners. ~63-65% would be pretty epic in BO5 final.

  19. My thoughts on the final:

    It surely is going to come down to who serves better.

    Cilic breezed through the first few rounds in straights. A possibly tired Gilles with two fives setters behind him, including a hypothetical 7 setter against Nadal where he must’ve been emotionally drained took Cilic to 5. Then Sam, with three five setters behind him and running on fumes gave Cilic a run for his money, and a few points here or there he might have taken it to five, or maybe even won it.

    Federer has been sailing smoothly and has gone past two really big hitters reasonably easily. It may seem he is well rested, but not well tested, but the progression of opponents has been perfect. Then there is the the fact that he might still be battling the cold. He is decidedly the fresher, experiences and the crowd favorite (what may have carried him over the line last year), and if Cilic’s performance against those tired opponents is anything to go by, Federer wins in 3 or 4 sets.

    Cilic will have to turn in a USO14 semi final like performance from nearly three years ago, that is, lights out serving, and jaw dropping ground strokes. Short of that, Federer wins his 19th.

    1. “Cilic will have to turn in a USO14 semi final like performance”

      I think even that might not be enough. Fed was clearly a bit flat after a 5-setter against Monfils, so a fresher, more confident Fed on grass may just have got a win even with that performance from Cilic.

  20. From Twitter of “Inside Tennis” mag publisher:

    Bill Simons‏ @BillSimons1 4h4 hours ago
    FEDERER REPORT: Reportedly #RogerFederer is being treated for a sinus infection.

    1. Sinus infections can really stink: Lethargy, massive tiredness are my biggest symptoms.

      Have no idea how bad it might be, but I hate sinus infections with all my heart.

      Hope he’s allowed antibiotics.

      1. He’ll figure a way out. He’s been playing for close to two decades now so there must be a work around and I’m sure they account for situations like these.

        Or, perhaps he is taking a page out of the Nadal playbook. Lower expectations. Won despite the infection. Lost due to the infection.

        Just win the 19th and get it over with already! πŸ˜‰

      2. Yea
        The mistaken challenges and the high amount of DFs might be related to the sinus thing? We’ll see tomorrow, too long to wait out this thrill.

  21. The best two players of the moment on grass are contesting the final.

    However, Cilic was a bit lucky that Sam ran out of steam in the 4th.

    Fed was Fed V 0.5 yesterday against Berdych but that was enough.

    Fed V 0.75 will be good enough for Cilic

  22. It’s not about cold or flu: it’s a skin rash. See how many itches Fed has to scratch on his path:
    Man, this is hard on the nails. I hope they are not too blunt tomorrow…

  23. Fed looked tired to me towards the end of the match. Why? Cilic in the final is very dangerous. Very dangerous. Really tough match coming up… be mentally prepared for an upset. Cilic is more than capable of spoiling the script.

    Service is going to be the key. They say that it’s the independent shot but I regard it as the most dependent shot in tennis. Fed’s serv is an indicator of his nerves.

    First set is very important also. Since he hasn’t dropped one inthe entire wimby… a lost first set can put immense pressure…

    Sorry for raising too many negative possibilities. But whenever everybodybis sure about his win… he gets defeated.

    Not this time I hope…go roger!!!

    1. I’m feeling all the nerves too.

      Def aware Cilic as upset capable.

      It would not be a surprise to see him win. He CRUSHED Fed like I’ve never seen Fed crushed before or since at USO ’14 and really should have easily seen him off last year in the quarters here.

      There is a fair argument to see Cilic as the favorite realistically.

  24. I have to do a business trip and am now in Rome. I will miss out watching the final live tomorrow. I hope that tomorrow’s number will be 8, rather than 1.
    Allez Rog!

  25. Lots of good posts I too read Fed being treated for a sinus infection. I think this answers the questions of Roger being a bit tetchy with himself. He will have a battle on his hands tomorrow, however I think Cilic
    will be nervous….I know he beat Nishikori at the U.S. but Federer at Wimbledon seems much bigger so C’mon
    Roger go for it x Jonathan enjoyed your quip about Mirka haha x

    1. If anything, that’s a point in favour of Fed. Tignor is the Skip Bayless of the tennis world. Except less entertaining.

    2. Tignor picked Williams over Muguruza.

      He picked Nadal over Muller.

      He picked Murray over Querrey, and Djokovic over Berdych in the quarter finals. It was easy for him to pick Cilic against running on fumes Muller and Querrey. It’s just a bold prediction.

      Maybe he is scared he is going so wrong with picking the stronger player? Maybe he doesn’t like Federer? Tignor is a fucking moron. Can a moron predict a coin toss correctly? As long as Cilic has a non-zero chance of winning, he can win.

  26. Everyone is giving Cilic so much power. If Djoko or Nadal were playing him in the final everyone would say it’s a gift. Federer is Federer. He has power too! Upsets are always possible, but try not to get so nervous. Also read about sinus infection, but it prolly has been around all week. Don’t panic. A tennis astroger, Sally Kirkman, said his Jupiter is in excellent position tomorrow. Ha. Just try to enjoy.

  27. So – not arguing – just looking for hope as one scarred by Cilic at the USO:

    Tell me how Fed will not get the unbelievable beat down he got in NYC’14?

    Why does that not happen tomorrow?

    1. Because Cilic isn’t in 2014 USO form. Because Federer isn’t in 2016 Wimbledon form in which he still managed to beat Cilic. Because Federer won the AO, IW, and Miami titles this year and has gone through some quality opponents without dropping a set. Because Cilic struggled to get rid of two tired opponents. Because the crowd will be overwhelmingly behind Federer. Because I said so. And because if you still aren’t convinced, I’m going to pummel you.

      The only thing I’m worried about is this whole sinus infection thing. If it is what it is, we are in big trouble, and that would be just unfortunate.

      1. Thanks, you Sid! The voice of reason. I heard they have known it was sinusitis for a couple of days now (but I cannot verify even that he has it…). Likely he is being treated–IF it’s even true.. He had a cold at AO and looked way more tired in that tourney than he does here. It’s one more match. He can summon all his reserves. Keep the faith. (Plus he practiced today and witnesses saw nothing off.)

    2. Um, it’s not 2014. He didn’t play a 5 setter the day before. He is a better player today. He is more confident. This is not a SF. He has more variety than Cilic. He is serving well. I too was upset by that loss, but Fed is on his mettle this time. Also, if Fed could come back from 2 sets down last year at W playing on one leg, he can win in a final where the crowd will be crazy on his side. I know Cilic is good and dangerous. I picked him to go very far in this tourney. But he lost to Feliciano Lopez at Aegon. How is he so all-powerful and scary now? I think he will be nervous, and if he bounces the ball 30x before serving, he will get booed. Yes, he can win. Any guy in the top 10 can beat anyone in the top 5 if he has the match of his life and the other guy is a bit off. I figure if Fed beat Nadal at AO in 5 from 1-3 down in the 5th, he can beat this guy.

      1. Thanks guys. Appreciate it.

        Never seen Fed manhandled like that before and the shock has lingered.

      2. Right On.

        2014 Fed had a lot of issues to sort out. 2017 Fed is out on a mission with every weapon chiseled.

        Hope Fed gives his absolute best regardless of his sickness. He has lost one too many finals here.

      3. “Hope Fed gives his absolute best regardless of his sickness. He has lost one too many finals here.”

        Totally agree.

  28. New racquet. Surprised Sid hasn’t reminded us of this πŸ˜‰ . New racquet in a Slam final against someone not named Djokovic, and at a time when he’s had the opportunity to become as familiar with it as he was with the old one.

    Having a hard time deciding what to do about watching. The match isn’t going to be televised in the US until it’s over, possibly hours later; but if I find a way to watch in real time it’ll be a low-quality image. Don’t know if I can stand not knowing for that long, though. First World problem, of course.

      1. But yes, fair enough, it can be seen live in the US, if you have cable. Forgot that, actually, since it’s not an option for me. Wish they’d let us pay just to stream what we actually want to watch.

      2. Does anybody in the US have bet365 for watching? I thought there were problems because of the betting thing, but I’m not sure if that’s real or if I made it up.

  29. Such a great post, such an amazing blog [yes, Ryan, it’s my therapy room, too after a tough loss] and many many wonderful comments here.

    Moving away from where I’ve been and the time difference, it’s been difficult to follow Wimby this year but I never missed your post, Jonathan. One more to go…I’m with you guys to cheer our guy today. Allez Roger!

    1. Yes, this is just such a wonderful space to anticipate, reflect, commiserate, or celebrate. Please please please, Fed, c’mon!!!!

  30. Folks, let’s not get ahead of ourselves here. Cilic can be highly dangerous, and we shouldn’t underestimate him, or treat this match as though it’s simply going to be a procession. That way disaster may lie – especially if Roger puts himself under too much pressure to win No. 8. Better to take the AO attitude, surely?

    1. Well, okay, I’m prepared to admit that I’ve called this entire tournament completely wrong :facepalm: Less delighted, given the quality of the match, than for the AO, where it really was unexpected, but still … a slam’s a slam. And it’s Wimbledon πŸ™‚

  31. Oh, and if anyone on the BBC – especially Barker – refers to Roger as The Great Man again, I think I shall scream! They were talking up Roger’s 8th as a virtual dead certainty even before the tournament began, and once Murray was out the hype has just got worse and worse. “Playing the best tennis of his career”, (still) going on about how fearsome his forehand is as if this was last decade, acting as though *everything* has improved and he’s playing superbly … almost makes me want to throw up at times. Roger, I hope you can indeed keep your head when all around you are losing theirs …

  32. Hey all, relax & chillax, the Goat’s got this one πŸ™‚ I think all are expecting a very tough match, but I think it will be an easy match. Roger in 3, maybe with a TB too.

    Let me remind you please… in the 3rd set, Berdy almost broke and would have taken the 3rd set.
    What does Roger do?? Hits like 4 aces to take his dream away. Roger just did not want a 4th set and just did not want to lose. Berdy’s box was standing and clapping and giving Berdy hope. What does the Goat do?? Play 4 points that said to them: “Quite please, genius at work” πŸ™‚

    Roger has had his scrappy match, he didn’t peak too soon and he has been nervous. In the Final, he will not be nervous, he will not give Cilic a chance and he will win quickly…. Have you guys seen how Cilic serves?? He is nervous, looks up like 3 times, bounces like 15 to 20 times and moves panickely from one front to back. And that is just one serve !!! …. Roger’s got this one….

    1. Ps: Welcome to BBC. First they switch the matches through the channels, then they interrupt Roger’s or Rafa’s or Novak’s matches to show a live match of a dubs where one of the four is English,
      and now that Muzza and Konta are out… they remember that they have an adopted son called Roger Federer… Sigh….

  33. Thanks Jonathan and all of you guys for this blog. Will be difficult for me to sleep tonight thinking about tomorrow’s game. If he wins, Roger will be something like a world hero and the pressure on him is tremendous. Cilic is dangerous and so hungry. Fortunately Roger has the experience and is so well-balanced in every way. I just wish for him that his cold gets better and that he enjoys the match. I certainly will, watching his game is for me a joy.

    1. Nice write Cec, thanks. Exactly expressing my feelings about it, too. I also worry that Roger will feel the press more than in AO. But I confide in his strength and balance to overcome that, and play lights out.

  34. Hi all. Fantastic forum and comments and always excellent writing Jonathan. Thank you so much. Long time follower, only posted once or twice. Supported Roger since the beginning and hard to believe the changes in my life in those 15 odd years while Roger has been a constant. The personal connection we all feel is tangible. The beauty of his game transcendent. I honestly gave up on 18 after 2015 Wimbledon final but was at peace with just enjoying watching the last days of his great career, knowing how much he loved playing, and honestly not worried about legacy. I also was at peace with the fact that either Rafa or Satan (love that name) could break some if not all of the records, but that did not threaten the GOAT legacy, as this is greater than the sum of the parts, ie as in a piece of music is not defined by the length or technical difficulty of the score or a piece of art by the number of brush strokes (if that makes sense). This year has been a gift, a miracle, a glorious shock.

    I am anxious about today, especially with the cold/sinus thing and the tools that Cilic has. But it is what it is and we know he will give his incredible all and will try to solve all the problems thrown at him with his amazing tactical ability. Let’s hope for clarity of mind and freedom is in AO – hope he doesn’t want it too much. I was lucky enough to get a ticket on ticketmaster for today (used to be easy, recent years impossible to get) and was also there in 2012 and before that 2008 and 2009. So lucky I know. Just know that I will be supporting, cheering, shouting on all your behalves as hard as I can. Let us all try to enjoy and not worry or stress. We never thought we would have today’s chance. Go Roger!!!

    1. Beautifully written Kevan, & yes you are incredibly lucky!, & thanks for channeling all our support!

  35. Good to read all your comments
    Everyone in this house is a nervous wreck already and very emotional but we will be watching the whole match.
    See you all on the other side.
    Sending every positive thought I have to Federer, and whatever happens he will always be the greatest of all time.

  36. Oke Marin Cilic…. GO AWAY….. You made the Final, you avoided both Rafa & Andy… so be glad with that and be content with that. Dont wish for anything more. I dont know if it is true, but Roger will be your first top 10 player if I am not wrong. Where as Roger has faced 1 Wimby SFinalist, 2 Wimby Finalist and now you a GS winner…. Go away Marin πŸ™‚

  37. Roger for a clean & fast win….. Go Roger…. Go Goat…. love and respect you no matter what the outcome…

    19 AND 8

    1. TBH, I feel a bit sad for Cilic. He was there with a mission to beat Roger but injured his foot and Rog was also too strong.


    1. In the interview afterwards, he was very embarrassed to have forgotten to do that, and did it then. I think he was just very upset at not being able to play better. I guess it *was* only his second slam final, after all … I’m sure that if someone stuck a mic under my nose I’d probably forget to say all the things I ought to say.

  40. Looks like short hair isn’t too bad? πŸ˜‰ 19 and counting!

    Feel real sorry for Marin, wonder what the problem was… But Roger is at 19GS and has a shot at #1, absolutely ridiculous…


    Congratulations, all Federer fans!

  42. Grand slam number 20 at US open final is now a realistic chance for Roger. He needs to stay focused, hungry and healthy. As a tennis fan, I want to come it against Nadal in the US open Final. Then as a fan of him of for last 17 years, I will have no expectation from Roger Federer. Neither Nadal, Nor djokovic will be able to come near to 20 Grand Slam marks.

  43. Woow,
    It’s like a dream. Even he doesn’t fully realise it.

    You were right Katyiani and all the optimists here :)))
    I had a good feeling this morning but didn’ t dare to express it.
    US Open next :))))) yesssssss, crazyyy

  44. Well, another semester, another major… We’ve just rewound 10 years. I will just say again, as after AO, that RF rewarded us sick stubborn fans with 1000% interest rate our preserverance during the less than bright times. Now, I’m onto holidays, relaxed and happy.

  45. Watching the post match shenanigans as Roger goes eventually to the locker room.
    I don’t think even Roger can believe it.
    Lots of hugs, kisses, high-fives.
    Great match.
    Love Roger.

  46. Yessssss! The eighth Wimbledon title, captured without dropping a set! An anticlimactic way to accomplish such a monumental achievement, but all hats off to Roger Federer for doing it at age 35 going on 36!

    It’s like 2006 again. Yay Roger!

  47. Can’t believe it, despite the fact it was not the nail-biter I expected. Not sure what was going on with Cilic – in the first few games he was taking it to Federer, but the slip cost him. And then Fed relaxed and started to flow.

    Remember the losses in 2014 and 2015 if you ever start to think this moment is ‘easy’…remember the last victory here was 2012.

    What next? He has a shot for No. 1. And it seems the only other challenger is Nadal, so he has to go for it.

    He will play Cincinnati, Us OPen, Basel, and London hopefully if he is healthy. Should he throw in Montreal and Shanghai?

  48. So HAPPY for the best of all ! He deserves it so much !
    Let’s celebrate ! I virtually send all of you some Champagne from France !

  49. Ofcourse not the “best” final, but after so many well fought (won and lost) finals…. he deserved this one to be “easy”….

  50. Woohoo! What a year! Let be the confidence Roger is playing with. It shows in all his shots and at all times (when ahead and when under pressure)

  51. I still regret why he lost to Djokovic that two final in 2014 and 2015, particularly in 2015 he was in imperious form in grass. But, because of these loss, all these victory in AO and Wimbledon seems sweet now

  52. So so wonderful to bask in the joy and the glory! Love reading all the jubilation. Yes, little too easy a victory, and did feel bad for Marin, but we’ve all (and also Roger) have waited long enough.

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