Grand SlamsRoger FedererWimbledon

Raonic Ends Federer’s Wimbledon Run

Bit of an upset here as Milos Raonic took out Roger 6-3, 6-7(3), 4-6, 7-5, 6-3 in three hours and 24 minutes to make his first ever Grand Slam Final.

Roger was the bookies favourite pre match and after a poor start it looked he'd justified his odds as he moved 2 sets to 1 in front and was the better player throughout the fourth set. But Raonic stuck around, got a second wind and took advantage of an awry game from the Swiss to force a decider. The fifth saw Roger's legs fail and after he took a tumble he dropped serve to trail 1-3 which let Raonic serve his way over the line. Not what I had in mind even though I thought it would be close but utlimately Raonic did a better job of things when the opportunity came his way; he bags his 3rd win in 12 meeting and gives himself a fighting chance of winning a slam on Sunday.

Quick Match Recap

Fed Raonic Wimbledon 2016

Federer won the toss and chose sides. Raonic held to 30 to kick things off. Roger then levelled for 1-1 but at 1-2 he double faulted on break point to hand Raonic a 3-1 lead. The Canadian consolidated and bagged the first set without facing a break point.

Losing the first set was a disaster for Roger but he quickly regrouped in set 2 to lead 1-0 and was able to hold serve fairly comfortably. The problem was Raonic wasn't really troubled either until game 10 where he had to save 4 set points before holding. The set resulted in a tie break and it was Raonic who blinked first with a double fault at 3-3. Roger then held both serves to lead 6-3 and converted his first set point to level at 1 set all.

Into set 3 and Federer was the man on top making more returns and holding serve easily. Putting more balls in play paid off as he broke to lead 4-3 and went on to serve out the set 6-4 and put himself in the driving seat.

Set 4 saw Roger continue to play well and he held 2 break points in game 5 but Raonic held. The Swiss was making inroads into almost all the return games holding another break point in game 9 which once again didn't go his way. At 5-5 0-30 Raonic came up with a full stretch volley to cut off a pass, you could tell Roger thought he had it won as he'd stopped moving and had to make a last ditch attempt to get to the volley. That point helped Raonic go onto hold and guarantee himself at least a tiebreak. Roger quickly moved 40-0 up but from 40-15 he hit back to back double faults and a terrible forehand approach shot to get broken losing the set 7-5.

Dropping the fourth set in such fashion gave Raonic a huge shot of adrenaline going into the fifth and with Roger saving at 1-2 deuce he took an awkward fall to give Raonic a break point. Roger took a short break to see the trainer, saved it and held a game point but after another double fault Raonic came up with a great point to break and lead 3-1. The wind was now in his sails and he consolidated for 4-1. With Fed looking to be out of gas Raonic had two more break points for a double break but couldn't convert. A quick hold gave Raonic a 5-2 lead and despite Roger holding to love for 3-5 Raonic served it out in style to take it 6-3 in the fifth.

Match Stats

ACES 23 16
FIRST SERVE % IN 113/167 (68%) 98/160 (61%)
WIN % ON 1ST SERVE 94/113 (83%) 80/98 (82%)
WIN % ON 2ND SERVE 25/54 (46%) 32/62 (52%)
NET POINTS WON 38/56 (68%) 25/37 (68%)
BREAK POINTS WON 3/8 (38%) 1/9 (11%)
RECEIVING POINTS WON 48/160 (30%) 48/167 (29%)
DISTANCE COVERED (M) 2382.8 2349
SABR 0 0


Thoughts on the Match

Federer Raonic Wimbledon Semi Final 2016

First the match itself… I always thought this match would be predicated on how Roger was moving after going 5 sets with Cilic on Wednesday. The answer was pretty good for the most part but he got himself in a terrible position by losing the first set so tamely and when the match went the distance he ran out of gas. Had he won that first set I'm 90% sure he would have got this one done in 3 or 4 but he let Raonic get on the board and it cost him big time.

The second and third set were all fairly solid for him. Never quite making enough first serves or dictating play to run away with them but he was the better player which is why he got the lead. I though the fourth was going to go his way too after the first few games but Raonic found something extra, started controlling more points and took full advantage of the horrible game at 5-6. Even Roger can't explain what went wrong so I'm not going to try either but the set point was such a joke of a forehand πŸ˜† As for the fifth set, again I thought he had a chance but his movement around the court dropped off a cliff. The tumble in game 4 obviously tweaked something too and from there on it was done and dusted with Raonic only dropping 2 more points on serve en route to closing it out.

What more can you say? Both guys had an almost identical gameplan (obviously vastly different game styles), neither of them executed it perfectly but Raonic played smarter, dug deep, got more points on his terms and came forward when it mattered to get the victory.

As for the tournament, it has to go down as an achievement to make the semi finals. He definitely took advantage of easy second and third rounds but getting past Johnson and then coming back from the brink against Cilic was pretty special. Remember he had knee surgery 5 months ago and has barely played all season. So Wimbledon has to go down as a big plus for him when looking at the bigger picture. These back to back 5 setters will have given him a ton of info on where he is at and the Cilic win will have given him a ton of confidence. The Raonic loss will have dented it somewhat but when is all and said and done, he didn't play great but still took a guy who's reaching his peak to 5 and had more than enough chances to win.

So I don't really have too many concerns about his game moving forward but his stamina is always going to be under scrutiny when matches go the distance. The game is hugely physical and there's no way around it with the courts at their current speeds so how can he take down a big tournament when an opponent forces 5 sets? Probably a discussion for another post that one πŸ˜‰

The other immediate question is how he is holding up physically – he said he's had a thigh problem all tourmament (obviously not severe) and that fall in the fifth looked like it tweaked the knee a bit. It looked like the type of fall when you're upper body / mind is moving too fast for your legs to catch up so not great. Hopefully no real damage.

Anyway, over you you. What did you guys think of the match? Let me know in the comments.


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. Still sad about this loss, Roger seemed to be on the driver seat from set two until that break in the fourth ???

      The final will be very interesting hahaha yeah right!


  1. Just noticed, only 14 unforced errors over 5 sets. Quite surprising. A sign Fed was a little passive? Not able to play as aggressive as he would like? Or did Raonic stop him?

    1. That is a startling number. But yes, most of his errors go into the unforced category. Raonic played like Federer would. Tons of winners, and errors. Notice also that the W/UFE differential is the same for both: 35. One of those games where the match was not on Roger’s racquet. Some of the approaches he played were horrendous. The one that gave Raonic Set 4, was and inexplicable forehand push down the line.

      But the key to me was Roger’s inability to win one more break point (1/9). The same story as in New York (4/24). He is feeling the same way Cilic was feeling a couple of days ago.

      A five set win though would’ve put paid to Roger’s title chances anyways. So, I’m not sure whether to feel bad about it. A win would’ve been nice, only to ruin it against Murray, as at the Olympics’12, and that would’ve been a bigger heartbreak.

      This folks, is the end of an era. 17 it is. The worst that could happen would be someone matches it. I’m actually writing off Federer’s chances of winning another slams. It’s over, and I can’t believe I am saying this. Unless the rest of the field takes an early vacation in New York, that’s it.

      1. Sad as it for me to accept this verdict, I have to agree .

        In the big picture, had he survived, losing to a Murray (and then hearing everyone act like Murray beat a 25 year old prime Federer) would be even more miserable.

        What chance do people give Raonic in the final? I think he will lose the 1st set 6-0 on nerves.

      2. To Roger (and others):

        Some deem you out
        I deem you in
        expecting so little
        achieving so much

        never never never never say never
        to say never I deem the greatest failure ever

        taking your heart
        into the art
        could surprise and be more than clever

      3. Spot on, losing 4th set from 40-0 is simply inexplicable which literally handed the match to raonic, he was no way going to come back with raonic serving st in the 5th. Live with 17, thats the bitter truth.

      4. I’ve been hearing the same thing since Wimbledon in 2014 when Federer lost that brutal match against Novak but he’s still been so close now the past two years. If anything, this result shows his game is still there but he needed more time to perfect it and if he’s 100% healthy he will definitely have another chance in New York.

      5. Totally agree, the inhability to take the break points opportunities cost Roger the match, he should won it in the 4th; sad really but the 18 is not going to happen; I just hope he can win some tournaments this year.

      6. Alysha, 2014 Federer was way better than 2015, and 2016. The question isn’t whether he has the game, but whether he can meet the physical demands. Djokovic is in his prime, and will be at least for 6 month to a year, at best. When he is not around, the rest of the field, that has gotten increasingly stronger, will keep crashing the party.

        It looks like he will win another slam, but he won’t. He still has the heart, but not the legs.

      7. Yes, Sid, I agree with you, too. A five set win would have left too little gas in the tank against Murray. And as a selfish fan, I would have hated another heartbreak in the final. Yes, end of an era it seems to be, what with the symbolism of the fall at the net and the long look back when he went off. Now to reorient the mind to adjust to this new Federer situation. Have been his fan since the days of his easy-seeming dominating wins, now am becoming a fan of his tragic-hero, competitive losses.

      8. Oh, we of little faith πŸ™‚

        I know hindsight’s a marvellous thing and all that, but I was rewatching the match so I could remove it from my hard drive, and then thought I’d see what everyone had said about it. Things look a little different 9 months on, don’t they?

    2. Yeah as soon as Raonic went 5, then Murray’s name was being etched on the trophy. No way Fed can play 2 x 5 setters and win a slam.

  2. “he said he’s had a thigh problem all tourmament (obviously not severe)”

    Really? Where did he say this?

    1. I don’t know that either – but we all watched his thigh being massaged during a game interval, didn’t we?

  3. He lost the match when he gave in that joke o a game in set 4 imo… So sad to see him go down like this when he had the upper hand after the 1st set…

    1. I quite agree, Simon. More double faults in a set than he normally would serve in a match. It seemed he was going for aces, and just overshooting – not for the first time. Was that really necessary? His FS % today was abysmal – I was surprised to see it was over 50%, tbh – and that put him at a major disadvantage against Raonic. Plus all the shots which weren’t quite making it inside the lines – far more than usual, I think, and I haven’t even watched the match through fully yet.

      That final should have been so makeable, even with his play being this poor. But credit to Milos, he hung in there and took the chances he was offered. At the beginning of the tournament, I would have been delighted that Roger had got as far as the SF, but now I am just *so* frustrated and disappointed that he couldn’t do better – he’s let himself down. And I hope he doesn’t end up with another injury.

      1. Fed’s scrappy serving cost him the match. After a phenomenal serving day against Cilic, it faulted when it mattered the most this time. I read Fed’s Swiss German interview and he was talking about his 2nd serve a lot in detail. Especially about how in the first set when he DF to give the break away that during the ball toss he changed his mind about where to serve. That could be a consequence of lack of match play I guess. Since he came back to grass, shot selection was/is a massive issue…

    2. I’ve just watched the game at 5-6 again. Raonic actually came up with some ridiculous shots. So it wasn’t the game where Fed lost it IMO.

      Losing first set put him at a severe disadvantage, then that game at 5-5 0-30. Huge point. That’s why he got broken.

      1. I remember there was scorching cross court return off a wide deuce court first serve, and another cross court backhand on a kicking ad court second serve. You could see a smile on Roger’s face on that second winner.

        After Roger’s two charitable donations, Raonic figured he was playing with house money, and with at least a breaker guaranteed, he really had nothing to lose. Then there was that useless approach from Roger.

        While it wasn’t a choke, you can still make a case that Raonic got a lot of help from Roger.

        Wasn’t that fourth set 0-30 point the one where Raonic came up with a ridiculous net winner? That was huge, and may have been the difference between Roger winning and not winning the title.

        Also, I stand corrected. Contrary to what I mentioned in a previous comment, it may have been Raonic’s (aided by McEnroe), front court game that won the day. Roger made only 14 unforced errors, but he may have lost twice that with the forced net pressure. It’s not often that you see Roger’s opponent make a significantly larger number of trips to the net.

        Conclusion: Federer helped, but in the end, Raonic earned it.

      2. Yeah the 0-30 point was where Fed thought the pass was a winner, he stopped then saw it coming back and had to make a last ditch attempt to get the volley.

        Looking back I think it was a huge moment. I did something similar in a tie break a few weeks ago, thought I’d hit a clean winner, ball comes back and I’d stop moving. Was hard to reset. Next thing I lost 5 points in a row and down 9-4. No way back.

      3. Match tie break I presume?

        The running back overhead, and volleying, in my opinion, may be the two most difficult skills to achieve in singles tennis.

      4. Two consecutive double faults gave Raonic his opportunities. That’s why Roger lost that game. And a pathetic approach shot ad out. This is not how a champion plays.

  4. Dear Fed.


    Ugh. You were the better player on the day. You lost to lesser opponent, IMHO.

    I still think that healthy you’re still better than everyone but Nole-bot. So…don’t give up.

    But, man. In majors, it’s been rough being your fan since September of 2012.

    You have to be a pretty special athlete to keep us all on the bus this long.

    Still your fan.

    p.s. I hope Andy beats the socks of Milos.

    1. I hope so too Alb. I cannot stand Raonic. Subtly arrogant. This is not sour grapes. Will always be a fan of the Great Fed.

    2. I can’t warm to Raonic either. Tbh everyone I have spoken to – not tennis fans says the same things about him instantly lol. When it comes to likeability he is so low on the scale. Small timer tbh.

  5. roger gift 1st set to raonic too easy way he should be more aggressive but he get back to be upper hand in set 2-4 until 5-6 those 2 DF and joke forehand set 5 raonic be the upper hand and roger look out of gas i wish roger didnt get more injure for that fall in set 5 it too much this year and us open coming soon

  6. Definitely a pattern. Poor break point %, unexplainable errors. Just frustration on another big loss again.

    I suppose Fed’s career is like life. It all depends on expectations. We could be happy he even plays still at his

    age, happy he made it into the 2nd week, happy he made the semis. BUT, we fans are greedy for more. So,

    another day or maybe many more of sadness and question asking.

    1. We all are happy that he is still playing but the manner in which he loses makes me go cry in a corner lol.I get over losses pretty quickly but this one hurts very much,this is painful because he was so close to doing something epic ,something which we fed fans never imagined 2 weeks ago.Stars had aligned,the draw made him stroll through and then he choked away right at the end.What makes me feel more sad is that the guy literally gave everything against cilic ,he literally stretched himself and those second serves were beauty.Post surgery Fed was making a dream run,a run that he would never have imagined but he choked away what was a rare lifetime opportunity.Somehow his losses against thiem and zverev made this wimbledon more memorable because he was an outsider in this tournament and he was improving and it was tbh a realistic chance to atleast reach the final with ths way things had turned out.
      But that is life, even the greatest freezes and lets things slip away.

    2. I don’t think fans are being greedy per say, it’s more about how frustrating it is to see Roger lose in the same fashion the past 2 years in these big slam matches. Has the match on his racquet but can’t play his best when it is most required.

      1. Choked may not be the word you want to use but Roger failed mentally under pressure. Yeah, it’s a word I would use.

  7. I can’t remember when I’ve seen Roger more dejected and angry at a press conference. He seemed like he was either going to cry or yell at a couple of points. He was so so frustrated.

    He expected a lot more from the 4th set – just like us.

    Heart of a champion still.

    1. He didn’t play like a champion – he played like a loser. He handed that match over to Raonic with inadequate and finally brainless play when he had every chance to win. It was embarrassing even for a club player, let alone a multiple grand slam champion. But he has become practised at it. Without the giftedness of his prime years there isn’t much left, and his great Achilles heel – his temperament under pressure – is now cruelly exposed. It is not his losing that hurts most – it is how he loses. I can no longer watch it.

      1. “it is how he loses. I can no longer watch it”

        yes, I quit watching as soon as I understood the mindset Roger was showing in the first set. I couldn’t bear to watch Roger play like that and that set the tone for this match. Raonic did nothing in set 1, Nothing!!

        This was Rogers match in 3 easy sets. Regardless if Roger would or would not have win the Finals, his mindset against top 10 is just not good overall. I don’t think he can do much at point of his career.

      2. Richard- “his temperament under pressure – is now cruelly exposed”

        Bit of a daft thing to say not even a few days after the man came down from 2 sets and saved 3 match points.

        Claud- Fed’s record against top 10 players is pretty impressive. Only Djoker has been the one thorn in his side for the past 2 years really.

      3. Yup just typical reactions from a loss. Question his mindset, mental strength etc etc. with is totally false. I’ve been guilty of it before saying he has shown mental weakness but it’s not really the case at this level. Margins are so tiny.

        Look at how cool he was vs. Cilic.

        PS what a huge choke from Novak when he served for the set at 5-4! So mentally bad!

    2. I guess he was feeling pretty much like me, then πŸ™ I think he’s going to have nightmares about the end of set 4 for years to come.

      But really? What was the thinking behind this: “Federer won the toss and chose sides.”? I assumed Raonic had won the toss – and was wondering whether anything would have been different if he hadn’t. Why on earth choose to receive when you have such a powerful server as Raonic to face? Wouldn’t it make rather more sense to start serving, so that if you lose serve it’s not an automatic set loss? Was he expecting Milos to drop serve at the start?

      1. Wanted to force the issue early and break. Novak and Murray do it all the time. I know Fed aren’t as good returners as them but he’s had huge success against big players. Obviously didn’t turn out that way but if he did break then no one would be questioning the decision. Like J said, this match would hinge on how fast Roger came out of the blocks. Fed had the same thinking, just didn’t execute and ended up breaking himself.

      2. I hope Federer isn’t attributing his loss to the decision at the coin toss πŸ˜†

        Maybe they should do away with the coin toss like in country cricket. Anyone got a new method?

      3. I have watched Roger play for most of his career. I have seen how he often loses matches he has the winning of through poor shot selection, execution, and loose errors at key moments. For a player of his skills the lapses are clearly mental. But, yes, he will beat players whose own nerves get the better of them. Like Cilic in the quarters. The prime Roger Federer was great under pressure – because he believed he could produce his best when he needed to. Now he no longer has that confidence – because he can’t.

      4. “Wanted to force the issue early and break.”

        Well, yes, but I’m just wondering whether it was a triumph of hope over experience. If it had been a Slam final, and new territory for Milos, I might have taken the chance (and failed, as it happened – he held his first serve after a slight wobble), but it might have seemed too much of a gamble when the opponent has already been in several Slam semis.

    3. Roger did his press literally like 10 mins after losing. So no surprise he was angry. He usually cools off a bit after losses which then make him seem more relaxed about it all.

  8. I’m glad Roger was angry in the press conference, because he should’ve never lost this match. No matter how much he has improved, Raonic is still at his core a one-dimensional player. Roddick at his peak was way better than Raonic, and it just shows how much worse Roger’s level was that Raonic could even get a set. I’m not mad that Federer’s level wasn’t that high (I thought his movement was poor throughout the match and his groundstrokes were feeble at times, especially his forehand, due to coming back from injury, etc); what I’m really mad about is his decision-making, and that’s not due at all to his physical level. Raonic’s movement, return, and backhand were all exploitable, and Roger just didn’t do enough to exploit them. On 2 break points, late in the fourth and early in the fifth, he had a sitter forehand, and both times he hit it straight back to Raonic, trying to go back behind him. That might be a good play against Djokovic or Nadal, who are fast and can track down balls hit to the open court, but against someone as slow as Raonic he should’ve hit that to the open court 10/10 times and Raonic would have no chance.

    That’s what lost him the match in the end.

    Again, I’m glad Roger is mad about the loss and said he gave the match away, instead of just saying Raonic was too good. I hope this fuels him to come back strong at the US Open and keeps the fire burning.

    1. If these past 2 matches have proven anything, you can’t really say who should and shouldn’t have won a match. Just shows the fine margins in this sport and how one point can swing the momentum and the outcome turns on its head. Isn’t that why we watch even if it means it doesn’t work out every single time in our favour.

    2. Basically Fed can’t win either way πŸ˜†

      Comes back from 5 against Cilic he’s such a genius and fought his way out of it.

      Loses to Rao in 5 and he’s a clueless club player.

      So which one is he? πŸ˜†

  9. I don’t know why Roger is not playing smart tennis. He is not choosing the better shots. Always hits straight to the opponent instead of the open court. Since 2014 FO, this has happened so consistently. I couldn’t believe Roger would make these kind of errors, so basic. If its one game its ok, but match after match especially against tough opponent. I think Roger is loosing the mental aspect due to age and family.

    DF in set 1 and DF in set 4. How does the 17 time champ, the best server do this?? I dont get it. If it was an UE I get it. But DF??

    I am questioning his support team. Or maybe Roger is not listening to his support team. In any case, its sad to see Roger lose like this match after match where He is the Better Player!

      1. Great point. If Fed takes the risk and it pays off he’s clutch but if he doesn’t he sucks mentally. Fine margins indeed.

      2. Cilic is so much at fault to letting Fed back in the match.

        You would think Fed would have learned from the first DF that the margins are tiny. Obviously he didnt learn. Even after the 2nd DF, I am not sure what Fed was thinking that he needed to make an ace from 40-15. Game set Match!

        The best players can choke too. Its all about “Are you ready to make use of the opportunity in front of you?”. BP conversion 1/9. I guess Fed was not ready.

        No matter how much we sugar coat his wins, we know that Roger just fades away for no reason during important games out of nowhere against the best. That is the current norm unfortunately. For his god given talent Fed has been under performing since 2014.

      3. Claud, I think it’s high time that you go support a younger player who’s at his prime. Fed obviously is too old and weak for your liking

  10. Sad day to watch a legend go mental against a serve bot who is learning to play at the net. Wish Edberg had stayed back with Roger and made him play attacking tennis. Inexplicable seeing the bot rush the net more against the better passer and the natural serve volley-er staying back passively. As he gets older looks like Roger has more of a problem with mental strength than physical. Every time he was broken this match he had a double fault in that game. Played too passive and psyched himself out against an opponent who will never be in the same category. Wish he lost to Murray in the finals instead. Even a loss against Cilic would have been less painful.
    Only positive thing to come out of this is that I don’t have to waste time watching the finals listening to the McEnroe drivel. Better spent watching younger Fed play some good aggressive tennis putting serve bots in their place.

      1. He got lucky against Cilic to some extent but pushed himself to take advantage of a slice of luck and passive play from Cilic.
        In semis he played too passive and had no luck to assist him. If one of the 4 serves at 5-6 40-15 was an ace or a winner and he went on to win the breaker we would all be feeling and writing something totally different. But one has to wonder if it all had something to do with a lack of aggression and too much of passive outlook which is unlike the Roger we are used to watching.

    1. Fed fans out like vultures against JMac in the box last night. I’ll admit it was a bit strange at first but felt like any other normal match he ususally does.

  11. Some thoughts:

    Roger has been on the tour since 1998, many players have studied his playing patterns and it is natural that he has been “figured out” somewhat. This in addition to his age, which in turn not only affects his fitness, reaction time, but also nerves as well. Older players tend to get nervous than when they are in their 20s, especially in key moments. Hence they are prone to blow matches. Roger certainly should have won the match yesterday, but bad decision making and untimely errors cost him the match. However, Raonic also played great, especially on breakpoints throughout the fourth set. While I believe Roger would have won that 4th set tiebreak had they gotten into it, it was not a guarantee. Raonic deserves tons of credit here. In addition, if there is any silver lining out of this loss, it is that it shows Roger doesn’t just have issues with one or two players. So for anyone who cares, it helps to repudiate the claim of Fed’s detractors that he is still playing his best tennis and only Nadal and Nole can beat him because they are better players.

    Indeed, even last year, despite his good results at WIM and USO, Roger did suffer bad losses at AO and FO. He lost that AO match to a journeyman by making the same mistakes of unable to win key points when needed. As for the FO Wawrinka match, that was the first grand slam match Roger failed to break serve since USO 2002, before becoming the Roger we know. Therefore, even the supposed high level of 2015 is in fact far from the level of his best years.

    One thing about Roger is that we know he shakes off losses easily. While this is overall a good thing, IMO sometimes maybe it can also become a problem as he should perhaps dwell on them a bit more, just to keep the fire burning. I remember once hearing Courier talking about how Federer was feeling as happy as he could be the day after his FO 2008 loss to Nadal. I may be wrong about this, but it seems sometimes Roger is too nonchalant after losses. On the one hand this is good as in the end tennis is just a game and losing a match doesn’t have real life, historical consequences. Moreover, Roger has a family now and they need his attention as well. But this approach perhaps also affected Roger overall focus. Roger often talks about enjoying playing tennis for its own sake, but sometimes I wonder if such a mindset can hurt his competitiveness?

    Despite being an old pro, at 35 Roger is still relatively young. There are things he may not regret today, but 20 years down road will he feel the same way? He has had so many tough losses over the years and it seems he gets over them rather quickly. However, I sincerely hope he doesn’t feel any regret over these setbacks years later, wondering perhaps he could have done things differently, e.g. making major changes to his game.

    This Wimbledon is not meant to be. But who knows, maybe #18 is already on its way and we just don’t know. Maybe like Sampras, Roger will claim his last slam at USO by beating his chief rival, be it Rafa or Novak. How sweet would that be?

    1. Would love to believe that he could pull it off. (And you’ve many other good thoughts I agree w David.)

      But year after year after year after year he comes so close and yet…

      It’s getting very very hard for me to Bel18ve at this point. Tough times have taught me to doubt as a reflex now when he gets this far.

      But I’m very grateful to God he exists – for all the joy and championships and grace in defeat – grateful for his elegance and genius and attitude and class and GOATNESS… and I’ll be plenty 7atisfied with 17.

    2. You are obviously further down the grief path than some others, great comment and perspective David.

    3. I’ve been reading a lot of delusional stuff by Fed fans in the last 24 hours and this whole Fed isn’t sad enough about his losses might just take the cake. Roger loving tennis > winning is what will separate him from any other player when all is said and done.

      He didn’t even expect to be in this stage of the tournament a couple of weeks ago. He surprised himself and all of us in his efforts and the fact that Novak wasn’t there to deny him again is what is rubbing salt in the wound it would seem.

      1. “Roger loving tennis > winning is what will separate him from any other player when all is said and done.”

        Yes, this is certainly a good outlook for Roger to have and I don’t find it to be bad or anything and I said as much. However, there is the danger that if this becomes the dominant thinking then any big losses can just be shrugged off simply because enjoying playing is more important than winning. It seems to me this kind of attitude can affect one’s will to win. Again, I am not saying this is how Roger actually thinks. And even if it is, there is nothing particularly bad about it either, as long as he doesn’t have any regret over these missed opportunities later in his life.

    4. I agree with a lot of the comment but I think everyone has a tendency to start digging too deep for reasons behind losses. I can’t be arsed over thinking it, takes me long enough to write a post πŸ˜†

      You can pretty much cook up any theory and say it’s why he lost. Oh he has kids which has killed his competitiveness. But go back to 2009 and the twins were the reason he got his edge back πŸ˜†

      I wish I could put up a video of a club match I lose, do a post about it and then get all this feedback. I dunno if it would help or drive me crazy. I have a feeling the latter. Last thing I want is when I’m serving break point down is “whoa, what if Brian was right, maybe I have been tweeting too much and it’s costing me matches” OUT.

  12. Alb, I echo all your posts. All the ‘what ifs’ play into our minds. Breakpoint chances in US ’15, what if Anderson finished Novak last year, same with Goffin this year?

    Saw a clip of Roger w/ family leaving the grounds, and as disappointed as he was, he was still gracious to the staff.

    He is special. All class. Fan for life.

  13. First of all I am a huge huge fed fan.I wished he’ll reach his 11’th wimbledon and perhaps go on to win it(as rafa and djokovic was’nt there).He was quite unlucky in the 4th set…he had break points at 3-3…couldn’t convert them.Then at 6-5, Raonic got some luck on his returns…and then broke him,which proved to be decisive.He should have finished the match in 4 sets.I am praying to God that he gets well , hope the fall at the 5th set doesn’t injure him .
    Lasty, we must stop telling him to retire instead celebrate the way he played through the semis as he wasn’t 100% fit.Without being fully fit and making semis (and almost winning it) shows that he is an all time great.Hope USO 2016 is federer’s 18th slam as Sampras won in 2002.

      1. Surely,the two double faults cost him the 4th and ultimately the match.It’s sad to see that his serve lets him down at crucial moments.Hoping ,he gets back to his 2015 level at Toronto and Cincinnati.

      2. After I made the comment I looked at the game again, Raonic did come up with some big big shots. He made Fed doubt himself from 0-30 5-5. The double faults were a sympton, not a cause.

    1. The break points Fed wasted in the fourth set reminded me of 0-40 in the Fed/Cilic match. Fed wasted his opportunities and ends up breaking himself. Seen it last year at the US Open final as well.

  14. I am still saddened and kind of shocked by his loss.I never thought fed would lose to a 6’5 giant at wimbledon as he generally plays big servers like roddick ,Isner and Karlovic quite well.Raonic just got lucky with his passing shots at the 4th just as djokovic got lucky at 2011 Us Open.I think with the player of fed’s calibre and class,17 might be not enough.He could have easily won about 20-21 grand slams if he believed he could win.It’s just that mentally he wasn’t strong enough to win .Some Grand Slams that I think he could have pulled it off were the Us open 2009(lost to delpo),AO 2009(to rafa),Wimbledon 2008 and 2014(losing to rafa and djokovic).This makes it 21.I am hoping he gets back to form once the us open circuit starts.He’ll be 35 come USO and hope he gets to finals just like Agassi did at the USO 2005.He was also 35 then.

    1. Raonic maybe did get lucky on some shots, but the same for Fed vs. Cilic. It’s just how the cookie crumbles. I don’t have too many complaints other than losing the first set so easily. The fourth set game was bad, but didn’t cost him the match overall, Raonic could have easily won the breaker.

      1. Have to disagree there. If Fed had gotten it to the breaker and lost it at least he would have felt he did pretty much everything in his power to prevent a 5th set. The last game of the fourth left a bad taste and was too big of a regret to overcome.

        I get what you’re saying about him losing the first set though. He was playing catch up for the second match in a row. Not to mention, Milos drawing bloody first might have been what kept him alive when Fed was just about at the finish line. Just didn’t have the physical and mental stamina to do it all over again. I saw an interesting stat that since 2012, Federer is 1-6 (well 7 now) when the previous match goes over 3 hours.

      2. I still think 1st set was big. Raonic did a great job on a lot of the break points and close service games in the fourth but the point at 5-5 0-30 I mentioned in my post – seemed to rattle Fed as he thought he had it won. Looks like a huge moment.

        Yeah interesting stat. Time to get out the Oxygen pod and change his archaic recovery methods πŸ˜†

      3. [Federer is 1-6 (well 7 now) when the previous match goes over 3 hours.]

        Alysha, that is a very interesting, and relevant statistic. A 1-7 record at slams immediately following a match lasting 3 or more hours. since 2012.

        As I mentioned earlier, he still has the heart, but not the legs. πŸ™‚

  15. The greed never ends eh? “Rational” Fednatics (Hows that for an oxymoron?) know deep inside that this 2-3 rounds more than we expected Federer to reach but that craving, the want is such that even that isn’t enough but then again who’s rational when it comes to Federer?

    Hope that knee is fine! That is most important. Good thing Canada Masters is in Toronto. Federer does well there. Hopefully get some match practice for Rio. I absolutely don’t care if he doesn’t win gold (I mean technically speaking he has one) but want him to win it shut up Nadal fans.

      1. Neither do I. Think I made it perfectly clear!

        Hanyway thank you very much. Your 1 tweet & 1 fb post got my blog nearly a 1000 hits! Gracias por todos!

      2. Yes the golfers have it right stay home . Ironic they all bailed and have waited to so long to be readmitted though.

    1. No one is being greedy. Most of us agreed that if Fed made the second week it would be a great result because of the season so far but of course fans are going to be disappointed when he comes back from the brink and is a mere game away from making another Wimbledon final without one Novak Djokovic in sight. Sport is cruel.

      1. Don’t get riled up, Alysha. This White Rice guy is a troll. It’s ok to be greedy. The fan is the most important piece of the sport. A sport is nothing without the fan. And a fan has every right to be demanding, and irrational.

        Fan (noun): A fan, or fanatic, sometimes also called aficionado or supporter, is a person who is enthusiastically devoted to something or somebody, such as a band, a sports team, a genre, a book, a movie or an entertainer.

        It’s ok to keep believing in 18. It’s also ok to believe that it ain’t going to happen.

        Now if you’d excuse me, I’m going to fix me some brown rice Sushi!

  16. I’m honestly not too heartbroken after this one. The immediate reaction was disappointment, but I pretty much agree that when you put it into perspective of the season as a whole, this was a better result than we could have reasonably expected. Although losing in the semis isn’t quiet the same as losing a final, so that makes it a bit easier to swallow. The question is, if he had made it into the final would have anything left in his legs? I only hope he can recuperate and has enough tennis left in him to have a good run when the hard-court season starts. I honestly don’t care that much about the Olympics. Would be a nice bonus, but not worth straining himself too much over it.

    People are saying that this was probably his last chance, but we’ve been saying that for the last three years now and Roger continues to defy the odds. Still you have to wonder how much longer he can keep going like this. His passion for the game and thirst for more glory does not appear to diminish however, and if that keeps him going we can only be glad for that even if that 18th title is slipping further and further away.

    1. Thanks BE, like your post. But yes, his legs hasn’t been 100 %, so admirable how far he got. Hope the falling is not making further delay for leg-recovering. He had obviously pains when it happened though. So – yes being grateful that he’s still motivated and performs. Not expecting win, not predicting loss, taking whatever we get – and that might be whatever!

    2. After going 5 with Raonic he would have been toast in the final. The grass isn’t quick anymore and Murray has plenty left in the tank. He needed to dispose of Rao in 3 but wasn’t sharp enough to do it.

      I’ve thought Fed wouldn’t win slams for a while now prob since 2014. Always a very small chance, but there’s too much stacked against him. Look at how few players won slams over 30, and many of them were playing on much quicker surfaces than today yet still couldn’t get it done. I think in terms of competing and closeness to winning Fed is miles ahead of anyone else who has played post 30.

  17. He went further than any of us expected, albeit with a little help from the draw. But as he said (mentioned in a tweet), he was so, so close and this loss hurts. Which is how we all feel. So I’m gutted of course.

    I agree with David on many point, this was in particular: ‘Therefore, even the supposed high level of 2015 is in fact far from the level of his best years. ‘

    Many commentators have suggested he was playing best tennis they’ve seen him play during some tournaments in 2015, but you only have to watch one of his old matches to see the difference. He’s still fast, but nowhere near as fast as he was. Leyton Hewitt said just before the match, that one of the biggest things when facing Federer was his speed around the court. He’s not old, but in terms of elite tennis, he is. Navratilova has said that one of the main issues as you get older is that you do not recover anything like as quickly between matches. Add to that slightly slower reflexes etc. and you have (IMO) the answer. Federer can still bring it on, but the candle has been flickering now since he turned 31. Age affects everything, you start to doubt yourself much more – hence inexplicable decisions/poor shots within matches. The untaken BP chances opportunities are also key. Of course with someone like Raonic and his ability to bring down an ace at the right moment makes it difficult, but in the past Federer would have grabbed many more of those chances. I do think he is still very competitive, but with a big family and other distractions, possibly the keen edge has been blunted somewhat.

    I’m loathe to give up completely on the possibility of one more slam, but it does now seem very unlikely. However, as Muser says, never say never: while he’s still playing there’ll always be a chance.

    All I hope now is that tumble he took hasn’t done any real damage. It’s still incredible that after 5 months and so few matches played, he was able to reach SF at Wimbledon. I wonder how many (and much younger players) would have been able to achieve that?

    1. Well it took Murray over a year to recover from surgery so I can’t see many being able to do it.

      I dunno why people feel Fed is playing better than his prime right now. His serve is better but his game? No chance. His decline started in 2008 people forget that.

  18. Firstly, I want to say that every one of us (well, nearly) would have taken a semi-final before Wimbledon began. I myself said Quarter Final, and he went one further than that, so the tournament was successful. We need to remember that, because it’s a good sign for our champ.

    But man is this loss like a kick in the nuts. It’s hard to take because I feel he should have won this match. He let Raonic back into it, and when it went to 5 it was always going to be Raonic’s to lose. I feel in my gut that he will never have a better chance to win another slam, not to say he wont have another one of course. But maybe it’s time we stop measuring his success by whether he wins a slam or not. I can’t say for sure, and I don’t want to believe it is the case, but I don’t feel like he has enough in him, mentally or physically, to win another slam. It’s an uphill battle and every year it’s getting harder and harder.

    And you know, that’s not so bad. After seeing him injure himself in the fifth, I realised how quickly it could all end. His body could fail him and we don’t see him on the courts again. Maybe it’s time to accept that he probably isn’t going to win another slam, and just enjoy whenever he does go on the court. And maybe, just maybe, he might do it one more time.

    I’m mostly over this loss. I’ve no interest in the final now, Murray will thrash Raonic I think (Federer should have beaten him and Fed is certainly not at his current best right now) and even if he doesn’t I don’t particularly care for Raonic either. Taken in context if we ignore the circumstances in which he lost a semi final is a very good result even if he should be in a final. We need to focus on that, and not what could have been because it’s not going to be. No point getting dejected over something that didn’t happen, right?

    Let’s look ahead now, and hope he picks up at least one title this year. As long as he isn;t too injured I think he should have a decent hard court swing.

    1. I’m not annoyed by the loss either. It’s just one of those things. Semi Finals at the start of the tournament seemed unthinkable.

      Remember 2 weeks ago some guy on Twitter said there was a rumour Fed might not play. It was completely false – but it seemed so plausible at the time given his season. Next thing he is in the semi finals.

  19. Not being a sore loser, Raonic dishing out a lot of body serves and Roger didnt really adjust his receiving position. You can almost accurately predict when Raonic going to dish out injury inflicting body serves. Pfff a bit tad dissapointed Roger didn’t pick that tactic. Yes a bit tad sad he lost as I think he really had that match in his racquet but margins are so fine. Reaching semis is a very good result considering lack play time, injury and low confidence level. If he had some thigh problem throughout 2 weeks, its really an amazing and show how special tennis player he is and can be if he is 100%. Hope the fall didnt create anymore damages, time to regroup and move on to Rio or Toronto – which ever comes first.

    1. Raonic didn’t play amazing but you have to credit his resilience to stay in the match and take his opportunities when he was presented with them unlike Roger. Too bad he’s a dull player and has close to 0 likeability.

      Toronto is before Rio. But that may be in doubt now depending on Fed’s fitness…

  20. Stuck in between feeling heartbroken at yet another missed opportunity to win a slam whilst being impressed that Roger even makes us feel such emotions given where his game was at a few weeks ago.

    The way Fed lost this was all too familiar to the past few slams. Being broken when he’s up 40-0 and not taking the initiative on break points. Just super unlucky since 2012 in the slams. Just when you think it’s his window of opporunity because Rafa starts fading, Novak tosses his hat in the ring and replaces him and now when he also steps out of the occasion on a rare instance, just doesn’t work out yet again. The fact that Roger keeps stepping out on court and giving it his best shot even though the odds are stacked against him makes up for his lack of slam victories in this stage of his career. I really do hope that all is well health wise for the rest of the season and he can push to be ready for Rio and New York. The season is just getting started! πŸ˜›

    A huge thankyou J for your awesome work this grass season. Such a quick turnaround with all the matches but you still managed to stay on top of it.

    1. Cheers.

      I was lucky that Fed had all his matches on centre, no posts on back to back days

      Credit to myself for blogging hard all this years to make that possible. πŸ˜†

  21. Many good posts here which have made me feel less sick today.

    I think we underestimate how much a 5 setter took out of Federer for the semi. He can say he feels fine but what else is he going to say? Someone said his record in 1-6 after 3 hour matches in the last few years. As Jonathan said he was clutch vs Cilic on match points so it’s not like he is a mental weakling. Yet here he was not really clutch vs Raonic. So mental and physical fatigue play a role.

    Consider being 40-15 up on Djokovic at US SF 2011 and choking – or the 5th set of AO 2009 final vs Nadal, 5 set of US 2009 final vs Del Potro – I think a lot of this is fatigue. Just because he tries to look calm and ‘never sweats’ as the announcers keep on saying, he is probably exhausted. Also as someone said as you get older you start to doubt yourself and you think too much. If he was exhausted in 2009 vs Del Potro then 7 years later forget it vs Raonic.

    Second, Raonic is not just a serve machine. THen he would be losing in the 3rd or 4th rounds like an Isner. He took Murray to 5 sets on a slow hard court in Australia this year. Yesterday he was hitting winners off Federer’s wide first serves in the deuce court. He was aggressive and his backhand down the line was hurting Fed. He was clutch on 2nd serve. He was fast and actually it seems to me he won the majority of the ‘scrambly’ points where it came down to reflexes.

    Now the crazy thing is that Federer, a man 4 months off knee surgery and nearly a 35 year old, still should have won this match. He outplayed Raonic in the 2nd, 3rd, and the 4th set up to the last few points of the last game.

    There is no excuse for being 40-0 up and then throwing it away. Maybe he started thinking about the breaker and lost focus . Also, Raonic had nothing to lose so could take big cuts (and 2 double faults doesn’t hurt). After losing that I think Federer just gave up. The way he lay on the grass after falling pretty much was saying ‘this is not my day.’

    I do not think he will win another Slam. I believed after Djokovic lost this would be the last hurrah. So I am very disappointed now. Realistically Wimby 2014/15 was his best chance. His serving vs Murray in the SF of 2015 would have destroyed Djokovic.

    SOrry for the long comment. I’d also like to say that mental weakness IS a part of Fed’s game in the sense he doubts himself against some people, like Nadal, Djokovic, and maybe even now Raonic (but not Murray). Nadal and Djokovic are better in this regard. I think Fed is actually a nice guy and lacks a certain killer instinct of a warrior like those 2.

    Also his backhand is the key weakness . It was not before because he simply ran around them but now he can’t anymore. I mean if you are Raonic or Djokovic and you are serving on break point on the AD side, all you do is serve hard to Fed’s backhand and you will win the point. He was 4/23 or whatever on break points at the US last year vs Djokovic, right? The fact is that against lesser opponents he’s so good he can still win the point off a lousy return enough times .

    I think this AD/deuce difference explains why he generates break points but then fails to capitalize. Maybe on the deuce side he can just block more on the backhand return, or anyway for a right handed person serving down the ‘T’ on the deuce side is harder because the ball travels less distance, I don’t know. ANy thoughts from people who play a lot of tennis?

  22. First of all, Raonic played a very good match. As good as he can play. Specially his inside-out forehands and volleys were too good. But he is a regular top 5 player now.. so that’s not unexpected.

    I noticed from the very beginning that Roger was tracking down his serve and was returning a lot of balls. It was a good sign. It remained that way up to 4th set. The final set was just a formality. No point in discussing that. No way Roger could came back after such a shocking 4th set and serving behind in the 5th. Roger is not Nole.

    Raonic is not habituated with so many returns coming back. After serving big, there is always an expectation to win free points. Slowly Roger took control of the match. I thought that’s according to the script. After 2nd set I predicted last two sets as 6-4, 6-2. Third one was indeed 6-4… but the fourth…Oh no!! He was on top, but could not break. Then the game at 5-6! May be the previous game was playing in his mind when he 30-0 up in Raonic serve. Clearly, it can’t be choke, u don’t have too much pressure at 40-15 to make back to back DFs. Inexplicable really. But.. Fed is Fed… A tiebreak would have definitely favoured Fed.

    I am not complaining about the break points in this particular match. Raonic played them really well with his serve, properly timed net approaches and excellent volleys. Fed got little chances.

    But I am thoroughly upset with this loss. Such a golden opportunity! Yes, nobody expected a semifinal run, but the way the draw panned out, it was a real chance of breaking the 17 hurdle. If he could do it, he might be facing Nole with less pressure in future. But this loss seems to put that hope of 18 to bed. Can he overcome this loss? Time is running out. We’ll see in Olympics and USO.

    1. Yes, this was all about the opportunity. No one would have thought about the way the draw would have opened up like how it did. You just dont expect the #1 player to fall everytime.

      Everyone is waiting for that last one. For his talent, no question Fed can do it. I am not sure how match fit Fed is going to be. It may never happen and 17 is amazing. However, Roger always looked worth more than 17 though. The # of finals he reached since 2011 proves this.

  23. [ Even Roger can’t explain what went wrong so I’m not going to try either but the set point was such a joke of a forehand]

    I’ll explain what went wrong. Down 15-40, as I explained earlier, Raonic figured that with a guaranteed tiebreaker, at least, he could swing freely on those two second serve chances. Roger understood that, though he won’t admit it, and tried to red line his second serves. The joke forehand approach really was the pressure of facing set point.

    What a difference the texture of a point makes in this game of tennis.

    1. Totally agree Sid, but he could at least put a second serve on play, one of them and ask the question.
      But yeah, he surely tried to line it there

    2. Roger worried about the “all or nothing” return from Raonic?? Cmon, all Roger had to do was roll his serve in and just play the point at 40-15. He would still have had a couple of looks to close that game.

      Even if it was the thought process as you mentioned, I dont see how Roger could overdo the second serve twice. Poor choice cost him and us a great sunday Wimby final.

  24. Pinched this from another blog – his Swiss-German presser – his comments (on 2nd serve) sort of fit in with my thoughts on doubts etc. which creep in as you get older I feel. It’s quite long, but interesting I think:

    RF: If you analyze it this way, then you can say so. It was excellent against Cilic and it wasn’t today when it mattered. You can always make a DF at 40-15 and you can afford doing it just once at 40-30 but against him you just have to win the game. I think that he didn’t deserve to break in the beginning. He was 0-30, then I don’t know how he came back – maybe an error from me, a lucky ball for him and all of a sudden we are 30-30. Then I hit a second serve and wasn’t sure how I tossed the ball – for a kick serve or for a serve down the middle and o it was a DF. My mistake was that all of a sudden I didn’t know exactly what I wanted. This can happen unfortunately. Maybe it has to do ith the fact that I have lost to him in the past and that I had too
    much respect all of a sudden. This wasn’t the problem but it goes like lightning through your mind in the moment you toss the ball. This cost me the first set and it’s a pity because I had more chances than him.
    But pffff… Did I lose the match because of that? Maybe yes … But nevertheless I managed to get back into the much wonderfully. I went on playing well without having any lapses and he didn’t have any chances
    until the 4th set. So I was very happy with these 2-3 sets. The 20-30 minutes that I had in the end of the 4th and the beginning of the 5th set are incredibly disappointing for me.

    RF: I’m surprised that I reached the semis. I didn’t think that I’d get so far. It’s also very positive that I played twice in a row 5 sets and in general that I managed to finish a 5 setter without any problems. Like I said after the match against Cilic in regard with the rest of the season… Hopefully nothing happened today (I think he refers to his fall)… that I can look ahead and plan normally and say “ok you reached a certain level through playing matches, you’ve become stronger”. It’s a very important step and an indication of what’s to come in the rest of the season. I can practice better, I can start quicker with fitness training, then start quickerwith tennis training. Because I lack a lot in the tennis department as well as in the explosiveness department. Therefore I’m a bit surprised that I got so far in the tournament. I didn’t think that I was fit
    enough, I didn’t think that I was fast enough, I didn’t think that I didn’t think that I was fast enough, I didn’t think that I could hit first serves in in a 5-setter after 3 hours. But it worked out nd that’s why the whole team and I are very satisfied… So OK, it’s fine that I lost, the opponent deserved it but I know that I can play much better and I hope that I get back to this level maybe in New York or even after New York.

    RF: It was a strange fall. I don’t know what it was – first to the right, then to the left and then I tripped or no idea what happened. In the first moment I didn’t know how I felt. If you just slip, it’s fine, it can be something muscular but this time I somehow twisted while falling. In the first moment you need time. The umpire asks you how much time. You are like, to see how I feel and if I can run at all, if I can walk at all. Then I called the physio so that I could wait a bit and see how I would feel in a couple of minutes. Otherwise
    you get a warning and it was an important moment of the match. I realized that it didn’t hurt me at that moment so I could play on more or less. But of course I had a big scare in general. It makes you lose
    your confidence in your movement. And yeah I’m fine right now. That’s why I’m hopeful for tomorrow and for what’s to come but we’ll see.

    RF: The Olympics have always been a big goal for me. We’ve been thinking in the last 3 days how we’ll make the preparation for Rio because you know that you are in the last quarter of the tournament and you can start planning slowly ahead. We must discuss the opportunities for practice, etc. I should discuss with Seve, Ivan, Daniel and Pierre what we do in the next couple of weeks. There will be a bit of rest but not as much as in the past because I need to keep a certain level. I don’t want to lose everything that I’ve fought so hard
    to regain by having a long break.

    From the lion’s mouth! it might clear up a few things for some people. It certainly helped me to understand a lot more.

    1. That’s a very good presser from Fed. Much better than any English presser he’d done post-loss. He always had a grounded view of a loss, and there’s still plenty left to play for this year (and much room for improvement). It’s reassuring he still has plans and to keep the momentum, recovery and training going.

      If he can create some form for Rio, the US Open or the WTF then he will have chances. I think this years US Open will be his last chance saloon for no.18. Next year he will be almost 36, it’s impossible then. It’s strange to think that the knee injury – the small daily decision to run the bath… and a freak accident – could have stolen a Wimbledon win from him. Such is life. I think Djokovic will keep closing the door for the next few years, as sad as it is. Then there’s the issue of upcoming players gaining ground, Fed can’t let them overtake him if he wants to remain competitive.

      It’s interesting to read he thought he gave Raonic too much respect, and it effected his serving. The guy owned him until this year.

      1. ‘There’s still plenty to play for this year’. Exactly! Only half way through the year so let’s see if he can pull off the impossible – you never know. πŸ™‚

  25. I think the sport is cruel sometimes to some players, on one hand we see Serena winning slams after slams ;she has 22 now and she might finish with 27-28 who knows.She is almost 35 now(Roger is just about a month older) and nobody complains about her age but on the other Federer who is possibly the greatest shot maker in history is sitting on 17 GS since 2012.He has made three finals since then only to beaten by the unbeatable Nole.(I felt 2014 wimbledon he was clearly beatable)After he loses at SF’s or QF’s people tend to write him off, clearly blaming his age.
    I am not saying that this was his last chance to win a GS,I am just saying that he might not get a better chance as the draw never opened like this after Novak lost.Had he won against raonic ,who knows he could have defeated Murray.But to come back from injury and play at this level ; the way he played against Cilic shows that he is not finished yet.Hope he gets well and plays as he plays.Can’t imagine tennis without Fed?.

    1. Williams is a doped up bitch, which is why she continues winning, and continues running to her panic room when dope inspectors show up. She gets “injured” frequently, so it’s amazing how she still keeps winning. I guess those frequent “doctor” visits keep her in roid rage alive, if you know what I mean. Williams is a laboratory experiment. Nobody, no racist motherfucker dare point a finger at her credibility because black lives matter, you know. It doesn’t hurt that she has always been surrounded by a pathetic bunch of girls who would drop like flies after two tough sets.

      As for Federer, he has been in the mix. continuously, with at least two other players who have 26 slams between them, with Murray soon to be a triple slam champion. Name at least one player in the WTA who has 10 or more slams to her name, or would go on to achieve 10 or more slams, that has been in the mix with Williams, over the last 15 years?

      That is why, in my book, Graf will continue to be the greatest female player ever. In the all time list, Graf. with 22 slams, could not be placed above Rod Laver, so I see no reason why Williams can even be anywhere close to Federer.

      1. Yes, it’s interesting how Roger is definitely becoming an “old man”, in sporting terms, at 35, with a declining game, while Serena Williams, at the same age, is stronger and better than she was ten years ago. What will she be accomplishing at 45? Clearly, something is missing from Fed’s preparation.

      2. Richard, you do have to bear in mind that RF has played over 1300 matches and of course quite a few 5 setters, and remember that up to 2005 or maybe 2006 masters tournaments included a BO5 final – Rome against Nadal for instance. Nadal BTW has played around 960 – again quite a way below Federer. Serena has played around 1000 (almost 800 singles, just over 200 doubles); still a lot of matches in those legs of course, but still a long way to go before she clocks another 300, and that in BO3. The only person that comes close to Federer in matches played is Ferrer at just over 1000 – and note how he is dropping off in this year. This makes a huge difference, and we shall probably note the effects of this in Djokovic (perhaps we are already?) next year.

        Federer has now overtaken Lendl and is second with most matches won in the open era.

        There is nothing wrong with Federer’s preparation. As I said, for a man to have surgery at the beginning of the year, exacerbate a back problem he has suffered from for at least 6 years and still make the SF of Wimbledon is something very few indeed would have achieved.

        Less criticism from the armchair would be appreciated. πŸ™

      3. So what armchair are you critiquing from? That you are likening Serena to the top male players shows how absurd her performances have become. But I don’t think you quite grasp that.

      4. Slamdunk, when I am referring to Roger’s “preparation” I am being facetious. I am merely making the same point as Sid above.

      5. I am not likening Serena to top ten male players, but it was you who said: ‘ while Serena Williams, at the same age, is stronger and better than she was ten years ago.’ seemed to me you were questioning why if she can do it at same age, why can’t Federer?

        As far as Sid’s comments are concerned, I usually ignore what he says about Serena – an unreasoning and unreasonable hatred (I can call it nothing else) for a great champion.

        I too think Steffi was a great champion, but I do feel that had it not been for the Seles stabbing (from which she never truly recovered), she may not have won quite so many.

      6. In this never ending dispute about who is the greatest and why, I always remember Roger’s grounded answer when an interviewer expressed this his view on Roger once: “brrr, well hard to tell, all top players are different and have different skills so this is never a definite judgement.”
        Well we can say RF (or SG, or PS or Bj. Bo. or whoever) is the one whose performance we by far like the most – some of us even when he loses, makes df’s, falls, stumbles, cries or whatever – and we are really very many liking the still brilliant star, RF.

      7. People seem to have a selective memory when it comes to Serena.

        How can you threaten to kill a line judge and be called a great champion? Or threatening an umpire to “not walk by me in the hall” or that bitch comment she made at Vinci lol. She’s so low on class.

        I am trying to imagine the heat Federer would have got for that type of comment. Or Djokovic for that matter.

        Can’t argue with her results. She’s taken advantage of her attributes to dominate the game. But like I said before it’s made women’s tennis so dull. And is perhaps why we now have this constant pushing from certain journalists to defend the WTA as they ultimately know like the money men it’s a lesser product. Not a good look.

      8. Slamdunk, funny comments πŸ™‚

        My an unreasoning and unreasonable hatred [for Williams]? I think Jonathan summed it up. Also, a great champion who hides in the panic room during a scheduled visit by a dope inspector, then later refuses to take the test citing “stress”. What about the countless unsporting comments after her losses?

        Get your head examined sweetheart πŸ˜‰

        So, now you’re going to say that my hatred for Beyonce is not justified after she did that black panther dance, and then recently said, “Stop killing us!”, which I’m not sure if she realizes, is an inflammatory comment, and can motivate killing of white cops?

      9. Roger declines with age – which is natural. Williams doesn’t – and in fact is stronger and better than ever. Which isn’t natural for an athlete of 35. One of them is likely doping. Draw your own conclusions.

  26. Jonathan! Can we have a new post to move on from this? Something to lighten the mood- A GIF post? What say guys- a little pressure on J? I think we could all do with some positivity.

    Random thoughts-
    -Let’s be fair people. Prior to the tournament,most of us felt that quarters would have been a great result. He surpassed that. Let’s be happy about that!
    – Last best chance to win? Pssh. People have been saying that since 2008-9. He’ll keep on creating chances. Our man’s the man.
    – Why would we assume that Djokovic is going to be hovering around in the tail end of every slam? He is going to let up eventually. Who knows. It might be sooner than we think!
    – Mental Toughness? Coming from 0-2 down, 0-40, saving 2 match points against a guy on fire totally requires mental strength. I wouldn’t be able to do it :p Just because he lost today doesn’t mean anything. When you’ve won as much as he has, you’re bound to lose as well. Its simple numbers. Some of those matches will be heartbreaking Raonic losses, others will be heart-stopping escape from the clutches of Cilic victories. The guy is tough as nails. So is everyone at the top of the sport.
    – Just because he loses to Djokovic doesn’t mean that he has a thing in his head against Novak. Djokovic has been the best player on the planet by a wide margin. Its as simple as that. Let’s count the 3/6 losses that Djokovic had in 2015 (to RF). That should say enough. Djokovic in his head has nothing to do with it. Take the way Federer has turned around rivalries against guys like Nalbandian, Hewitt etc. Sometimes its just about the matchup. As simple as that. Nothing more.
    – Olympics will be around sooner than we know it and then again that’ll be “Federer’s best last chance” And similarly at the US Open.

  27. Murray is hopeless on his break points against Raonic in the second set. He makes a good enough return but then doesn’t follow it up, either hitting weak or an error. He nets far too many makeable balls. It must make Roger feel a little better – if he can be bothered watching.

    1. Are you saying that Roger might have defeated Andy, if….And so on?
      Could be. I just pray that Roger wasn’t injured in the falling!

      1. Murray played two great tie-breaks. Roger needed to get to a tie-break against Raonic in their fourth set encounter. If he had then met Murray in the final – who knows?

      2. No one will ever know that. And me thinks it’s pointless to speculate on that. There are way too many variables. It’s not like if A>B and B>C it follows that A>C. Not in real life, sorry. At least in most situations.
        The things that could have been are abstract matter for those who like to torture themselves.
        The things that actually were are matter for those who cherish their memories, for these are a huge part of what defines one’s identity.
        So it is written πŸ™‚

      3. At least Roger Vs Andy would have got the crowd all riled up. This final was just pathetic in terms of talent showcase and crowd atmosphere. A big Zero!

        Raonic won because of DF gifts from Roger. Thats the least convincing way to win a match.

        I agree with the sentiment “who knows what would have happened with Roger vs Andy”.

  28. Yes which finals have we seen that were better? Nalbandian Hewitt was far better but I am actually happy for Andy. Seeing Lendl moved to tears was amazing but I think he was possibly reliving the frustration of his own losses on the grass.

    Roger brings the best out in players Novak and Andy nullify them. Raonic showed all sorts of goofy bravado against Roger which he could not sustain against Andy His parents look nice people though and maybe his girl friend off modelling somewhere upset him, not to mention J Mac doing that commie job was all so wrong.

    If you saw Roddick on Periscope this was a highlight at least.

    Sue Barker had to say and “you beat Roger ” to Rao ” as a consolation at the ceremony and Andy too had a minor swipe. As we always say even when RF loses he has done enough to almost transcend the sport, great still even in this absence.

  29. I would say that last years Roger where he destroyd Andy in the Semis would have won against Milos, but you could clearly see that Roger isnt moving the same way this year after the problems he had and most of all i think itΒ΄s the first 2-3 small steps that he isnt so explosive in but thats not so hard to understand. But sadly i think that federer had the tools to win this game but he did the mistakes when it matterd the most and thatΒ΄s just what he didnt do aginst Marin Cilic, he brought his A-game then instead. I sadly believe that this was his last chance because the Djoker wont miss any more semis or finals and there is noway Roger gone beat him in a 5-set match. 3 yes but not five πŸ™

    1. Arrh, Markus, no one knows what will happen next. Don’t worry, don’t expect, maybe hope, bur surely enjoy that RF’s there still! Brave, Brilliant and maybe not winning so much. So what? Well I also hope for a great recovery and comeback (and some more (slam-)wins – a wonderful delight – until next match πŸ™‚ ). It may still be possible. Turn positive please, that’s the spirit!

      1. I hope youΒ΄re right! But I feel so bloody sad when he looses important matches πŸ™

  30. Here’s another totally useless piece of speculation πŸ™‚ :

    What would have happened if Querrey *hadn’t* knocked Djokovic out? I know the received wisdom is always that Novak will just steamroller through to the final, improving with every match, and win everything as usual, but if he really was as exhausted as some people are suggesting (and let’s face it, he didn’t look his usual self), then perhaps something different would have happened. Conceivably, someone as lowly ranked as Mahut – who obviously is a very good grasscourt player – could have taken him out, or Raonic (in which case probably not much would have changed, except that he might have been buoyed by the confidence).

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