Tuesday, 2 February 2010

Federer Proves His Brilliance Yet Again

HKSARblog admits to wrongly predicting an upset at the 2010 Australian Open Men’s Singles title. Instead, Roger Federer comprehensively beat Andy Murray in three sets. Federer even said:
"I think this has been one of my finest performances in a long time, you know, or maybe forever."

[Roger Federer 2010 Australian Open Champion. Pic Getty Images.]

The question then is not: “How long can Roger Federer continue to win the big tournaments?” but rather: “When will the next generation become consistently good enough to overtake Federer’s game and keep him from winning more titles?”

HKSARblog seems to recall this same question appearing when the likes of Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi were still dominating the men’s tennis circuit during the twilight of their careers. Questions were also raised about just who would emerge from the next generation to overthrow these 30-something tennis stars. There were pretenders like Carlos Moya, Tommy Haas and even the relatively more successful Lleyton Hewitt but their brand of tennis (and personalities) failed to ignite the tennis circuit and excite true tennis fans. Eventually, Roger Federer emerged as the true contender following a none-too-impressive start in his first 17 grand slam appearances; notwithstanding a notable five set win against Pete Sampras in the fourth round of Wimbledon back in 2001. Back then, 29-year-old Sampras said this about 19-year-old Federer:
"There are a lot of young guys coming up but Roger is a bit extra-special. He has a great all-round game, like me doesn't get too emotional and you have to give him a great deal of credit."

The rest, if you like, is “ongoing history”. Considering Sampras won his last grand slam aged 31, it is reasonable to think that Federer has the opportunity and means to amass over 20 grand slam titles before he retires (although HKSARblog is prudent enough to refrain from making any predictions!).

And here’s another clue to Federer’s longevity on court. He said:
"My game is not as taxing as other players' games. I also think I have a very relaxed mind when it comes to the game of tennis."

This is absolutely true when we consider the amount of injuries sustained by the likes of Andy Roddick and Rafael Nadal, who have extremely taxing tennis styles. The psychological self-confidence in knowing that his game is good enough with very little weakness adds to Federer’s brilliance. We should recognise Roger Federer as the greatest tennis player of all time, and enjoy his brilliance in our present time.

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