Hey folks. I hope you are well. It’s been a while since Roger’s disappointing loss in the US Open semis to Cilic and I am overall very happy with Roger’s year so far. He was very solid in the slams and won three other important titles. Obviously all the fans were hoping for #18 but it wasn’t to be, and yet there is an awful lot to be grateful for as a Fedfan. I mean at age 33 Roger is having a terrific year and the best may be yet to come. Roger’s favorite indoor season is still ahead and then of course the Davis Cup final, which the Swiss qualified for for the first time in 22 years when they defeated Italy yesterday. I was making updates since Friday on Facebook when they began and I hope you all can join us there soon. I have neglected my Facebook page in the past but it is a very useful platform to use together with my blog for updates between posts, live chatting during matches, and much more.
I want to grow my Facebook page so please like, comment, and share. On Friday Roger was first up in the reverse singles against Bolleli as the Swiss number one(good to see!) and he won 7-6(5), 6-4, 6-4. Stan then put the Swiss in the driver’s seat at 2-0 when he destroyed Fognini 6-2, 6-3, 6-2. In the doubles on Saturday I was able to watch just a little bit and there was no Roger as he apparently asked Luthi to sit out the doubles. At first it looked like Stan and Chiudinelli would get the job done and Chiudinelli played some good tennis, but in the end his lack of experience showed as he played a poor fifth set and the Italians pulled the tie back to 1-2. I’m sure the Swiss could have made it 3-0 if Roger played doubles, but I was kind of happy that the Swiss lost the doubles because it gave Roger the opportunity to be the hero again.
I say again because I’m sure you would remember how he saved the Swiss against Kazakhstan in April. On that occasion he had to win the deciding rubber against Golubev which he did in straight sets. This time it was not the deciding rubber but Roger was the one who clinched it for the Swiss and he was the only team member who did not lose a match. He deserved to be the hero after the way he saved the Swiss in April anyway. He defeated the Italian number one Fognini 6-2, 6-3, 7-6(4) in the fourth rubber to clinch the tie for the Swiss. My connection was too poor to watch again but I caught the highlights of course and it seems Fognini played better with every set, so it is a good thing Roger closed it out in the final set tie break. Something that really caught my eye in the highlights was Roger’s forehand.
Since I didn’t watch the match it is hard to say for sure but he sure seemed to strike his forehand really well. That is maybe the one shot that has not been at its best since Roger started playing with his new racquet so that was nice to see. Hopefully it is a sign of what is to come and that Roger found his forehand again. It is a key shot looking forward to the indoor season, Davis Cup Final, and Australian Open next year. We know Roger’s serve is his best shot, and when he has his best forehand to back it up he is very difficult to stop. I think there is a very exciting period ahead now. First the indoor season where Roger always does well. Even last year when he had that very challenging year he still did well in the indoor season, and used it to start momentum for a much more successful 2014.
He now has an opportunity to do the same going into the Davis Cup final and Australian Open next year. Remember my last post where Roger said he is very close to winning a slam(I still haven’t verified whether he really said that but I think there is a good chance)? I’m not trying to create expectations again. Seriously. But it does make you think about Australia and what a Davis Cup victory could do for his confidence. Maybe Roger needed more time to get back to his best after the big low that was 2013? And if that is the case then the indoor season and Davis Cup final could provide the ideal opportunity for him to do just that. No surface is as friendly to Roger’s game as indoors and Roger usually peaks at the end of the season.
Remember what happened in 2008 when Roger had that tough time due to mono and he then won the Olympic gold with Stan in doubles? That inspired and propelled him to winning a fifth US Open later that year. Imagine what a Davis Cup title could do for him. Now I realize I am looking way ahead again here and creating expectations among many a Fedfan with what I’m saying, but I plead not guilty. I have already said I don’t expect Roger to win another slam. Roger has a great record Down Under but the speed of the surface doesn’t really favor him and Djokovic and Nadal remain very difficult to beat there. I just think if the Swiss wins the Davis Cup it will inspire Roger a lot, and I never said Roger can not win another slam. I just said I don’t expect it.
It is up to every Fedfan what kind of expectations they have because we all deal differently with Roger not meeting our expectations. And lets face it, the Swiss are still far from winning the Davis Cup. They will play the French in France in the week right after the Masters Cup. The French just made very short work of the Czechs and they have great depth. The tie will be played indoors but the surface still has to be decided upon by the French. They may choose clay seeing that Roger’s best surface may be indoor hard, but it’s not like Roger and Stan can’t play on clay. The likes of Tsonga and Monfils will be a handful that’s for sure, no matter what the surface. It is the #3 and #4 in the world up against the #11 and #18, so on paper the Swiss will be the favorites.
But this is Davis Cup and that pretty much goes out the window when you are playing away. The crowd will be crazy and Roger and Stan will have to have very cool heads. We know Roger is used to these situations but Stan can sometimes be a hot head. There Roger’s support on the side will also play a role to keep Stan calm. And I assume they will play Fedrinka in the doubles, but you can’t be sure until match day like we saw against Italy. It is all very exciting and it keeps the off season shorter too. How great is it to be a Fedfan?! I know I say that often but it can’t be helped. Let me just make it clear that I don’t rate the Davis Cup very highly as individual achievement goes because it is a team competition, but I do think it can possibly propel Roger to slam success again.
And with everything Roger has achieved in the sport it will indeed make his resume that much more complete!
Check out my Facebook page for more Davis Cup updates, pictures, etc. Please like, comment, and share.
Hi friends. I couldn’t stay away from tennis very long, could I? Don’t worry, I’m not still obsessed with Roger winning another slam. I just thought the above quote from Roger was worth a post. Of course it is nice to read and it gives you renewed hope, but I have already made the decision just to take things as they come and I’m not going back on that. It’s is almost as if Roger is trying to get us to take the bait again with this quote, but of course that is not at all what he is doing. I think he really believes he can win another slam and he has the right attitude. But this is what makes it tricky to be a Fedfan. I am tempted to have expectations again and become emotionally invested, but this time I won’t allow it. I think there is an important life lesson in this.
You might think from my blog that my life revolves around tennis and Roger, but that is far from the truth. Tennis and Roger is something I am passionate about but I blog for enjoyment or as a hobby. Offline I have big dreams and ambitions and one thing I have learned of late is that you can dream and want better things, but you should never make the present moment a means to an end. The present moment is primary and as long as you are dissatisfied with it you can’t have it better. So actually appreciating what I do have instead of noticing what I don’t have is something I have been focusing quite a bit on of late. I have been trying to do the same with tennis and Roger but still I felt very disappointed when Roger did not win the US Open. Another lesson learned.
Tweenerer back in Geneva
I allowed myself to become attached to the outcome again instead of appreciating what I have. I suspect it is harder than it seems and takes quite a bit of practice before you get it right. I thought after Cincy that I was happy with what Roger achieved and that whatever the outcome at the US Open I would be OK with it. Yet I was not. Far from it. So here I am again trying not to get emotionally invested after Roger’s latest statement. What makes it hard is that I actually believe him. I believe that he can win another slam. The trick is not to expect it to happen though. I am not sure if you are always with me when I write these things but I’m sure at least some of you will resonate with what I’m saying. I think I will just appreciate what a great year this has been for Roger and the fact that he has already won 17 slams.
Also this terrific blog with all the terrific people reading and commenting. I’ll be honest with you. I have even thought about quitting blogging because it seemed to me I couldn’t blog without becoming emotionally invested and hurt. Who knows. Maybe I can’t. But that shouldn’t be the case. Surely I can be satisfied with 17 slams and the best blog readers a blogger could ask for. Or else I may indeed be a glory hunter like Krean said! Jokes aside though, I don’t think I’m the only fan who finds it difficult not to get emotionally invested. In fact probably 99% of fans do become emotionally invested. Maybe some of us just deal better with losses than others. Personally I am a passionate person and I tend to be an all or nothing kind of guy. I can’t just invest a little emotion.
Well I am back today after not being able to finish this post yesterday. It didn’t feel right yet. But today I figured it won’t get as bad as this last episode again because now I have even lower expectations. Some of my readers are sure Roger will win another slam, or even more than one. Personally I am not that sure. In fact I don’t want to be, because if it doesn’t happen then I will suffer again. Nothing in the future is guaranteed after all, and all the more so in the case of Roger winning another slam. I think it’s great that Roger thinks he can win another slam and I think it is possible, but my expectation is now lower than it was in 2014. I will just focus on providing more value with my blog and making it the best tennis blog in the world. If Roger wins another slam then great.
If he doesn’t then I still have the best tennis blog in the world!
Ps. Forgot to add something about the US Open final. It was a blowout, with Cilic winning 6-3, 6-3, 6-3. A pretty disappointing scoreline for a slam final and I wasn’t gonna make any effort to watch it either. But it was nice to see that Roger lost to the eventual winner who didn’t drop a set from the quarter final onward. So congrats to Cilic on his first slam and a terrific two weeks. The fact that Cilic won the final so comfortably makes me feel better about Roger’s loss to him. Cilic was basically just unplayable, like Del Potro in 2009. Similar playing styles and personalities too. So I think Roger can be really proud of his US Open performance and a fantastic year so far. Hopefully he can end it in style with another Masters Cup title or the Davis Cup!
Pps: I just realized the link where this was originally posted leads to a blank page, so there is no actual proof that Roger said this. Oops! Doesn’t matter either way…
Hey guys. Not the result we wanted in the end but how are we gonna deal with it? I must say at first I wasn’t dealing very well with it. I watched the first semi between Djokovic and Nishikori and couldn’t believe what I was witnessing. Then it started to rain exactly as Roger was about to step on court and again I couldn’t believe what I was witnessing. I then decided to go to bed as it was already 2:25 am here and my health had not been at its best of late. I then woke up the next morning seeing that Roger got completely outplayed 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 by Cilic. So clearly the Monfils match was not his one bad match and he can deem himself lucky that he even made semis. That match just wasn’t convincing at all. I couldn’t make a post about it but basically Roger was asleep in the first two sets and had that resigned look about him again.
When he was match points down I thought he would lose for sure but somehow he escaped to fight one more day. On the first match point he actually had a drive volley which he should have hit for a winner but he gave Monfils another look, and was lucky it was Monfils because a better player would have made the pass. His lack of confidence was once again very evident in that match. Just the way he came out having chances to break Monfils in the second game and starting to waste break points again. There was just no urgency whatsoever. He basically just allowed Monfils to win the first two sets, and only when he was dangling off the edge of the cliff did he wake up. That is not how you win slams. I guess Roger forgot how to do it along the way. All the emotional and physical effort it took to get through that match cost him against Cilic then.
He was flat and Cilic just smoked him. Of course Cilic was in the zone but getting hit off the court like that was a big statement, or anti-statement if you will. It really showed me that Roger’s slam winning days are counted, bar a miracle. You can say but Sampras was playing much worse than Roger before he won his last slam, but they are two different players with different situations. Sampras basically went through a two year period where he was really struggling. Big time. I think in that time he gathered the strength to make one last big run at a slam and then he quit tennis right there and then. This is not the case with Roger. He is slowly(and painfully at times) fading away. He is still playing at a high level(at least this year) but he can’t cross the finish line anymore. He just lacks the edge to bag that final slam.
A brave face
I think Wimbledon this year was his last best shot at a slam, although next year at Wimbledon he may have an outside chance. I definitely won’t get my hopes up though. At first this loss hit me hard because I had gotten my hopes up after Wimbledon. I felt Roger had played really well but that the stars didn’t align for him there. Then he had great results at Toronto and Cincy and I got my hopes up even higher. And when the US Open draw came out I was convinced that this was Roger’s time. Even after the Monfils match I thought Roger had a great chance because Cilic had taken care of one of his two bogey men in Berdych. And then Nishikori beats Djokovic in the first semi to top it all off. So you can imagine I wasn’t exactly ecstatic when I woke up this morning and saw that Roger got dumped out of the US Open in straight sets by Cilic.
But at least I had gone to sleep and missed the slaughter. Then I saw Roger said in his presser that #18 wouldn’t make him any happier as a person if he won it, and I got even more annoyed. I certainly felt it would make me happier if he won it, so it made me wonder why I am feeling depressed over something that wouldn’t make him happier. It seemed absurd. But then I remembered what I said after he won Cincy about not having any more expectations for the rest of the year. I allowed myself to have expectations again! How easy it is to fall into that trap. It happens without you even realizing. But when I thought about it objectively and realized that 17 slams is a great number I started feeling better. Roger is totally right that another slam shouldn’t make him happier. But the thing is we as fans are greedy and spoiled and we always want more more more.
So really we only have ourselves to blame if we are hurt and depressed over a loss like that. We should be more grateful for what we have already received rather than always asking for more. And I am saying that as someone who made the mistake myself. The loss today hurt. I was depressed for the first half of the day and could hardly muster the energy to go for a run. I think what we have to take out of this is that 17 slams is terrific and anything else would have been a bonus. I myself knew this. I said many times I am not sure where another slam would come from and that it could or could not happen. Yet here I am, hurt again by the fact that it did not happen. Go figure. I guess it’s just normal, but I definitely want to avoid it in the future. So from here on I take the stance that Roger’s slam winning days are officially behind it bar a miracle.
I have no expectations whatsoever. It hurts to even say that, but it is the right and normal outlook to have. My consolation is this blog and the privilage of sharing this experience with all of you. I am actually amazed at the kind of people I have attracted to this blog. You people are really caring, respectful, and supportive. I’m not sure I deserve that, but I am proud of this blog anyway. Actually lately I have realized that I haven’t really worked as hard on this blog as I could have, and I was hoping Roger could win the US Open so that my blog could still go strong for a long time. So that was disappointing too. Not saying I’m gonna quit blogging now, but if Roger won the US Open it would have reset things in a way. But maybe then I would have started hoping for #19 and would have gotten hurt again if he didn’t get it.
So better now get it out of the way and not having any more expectations in the future. From here on I just want to appreciate much more what I already have with this blog and what Roger have already given us. There are still good things ahead. I think I just need some more time to get over this. There is Davis Cup ahead this weekend and then of course the indoor season. I can see the Swiss possibly winning the Davis Cup this year at long last which would be another great achievement for Roger in his already incredible resume. I think he can also do very well in the indoor season and win at least one more title. I wouldn’t be surprised if he wins another Masters Cup either. But for now I just gotta get away from tennis for a while. This was a tough one to swallow.