Saturday, 15 November 2008

A tough end to a rough year for Roger

A tough end to a rough year for Roger

Roger Federer entered the year with his aura of invincibility intact, amid expectations from the tennis world that he would seal his place in history by equaling or even surpassing Pete Sampras's record.

He exit's the year with the Federer Fear Factor - which in the past used to beat his opponents before they even stepped on the court - all but gone.

He lost his final game of the season to Andy Murray. Didn't see it but by all accounts it was a cracker. And for the second time this week Roger lost after going a set up. 

For some time it's been clear that the chasing pack of next generation players has caught up with Roger.

But - and it pains me to say this - it's also starting to look like that it's not just a case of Roger standing still and the pack raising their game to catch up.

In fact while Murray, Nadal and co progress, Roger is slipping back. Sure he is still brilliant, but it's no longer enough.

The big question is 2008 a blip and will he come back as strong as ever in January, win some slams and re-capture the No 1 spot?

Or is it the beginning of a new phase in which he continues to bag the occasional Slam but has to come to terms with the fact he is no longer the man?

On the basis of the fighting spirit he showed yesterday in refusing to quit despite being in severe pain (and nearly beating Murray) the hunger and pride is still clearly there.

So as I'm a glass half full kinda guy, I'm going to predict that after a much needed rest Roger will get the top spot back next year, and break Pete's record!

What do you think?


TopSpin said...

Hi Steve

Agreed the Fear Factor is most definitely gone.

But he should still be able to surpass Sampras and may even recapture the #1 spot.

It's just instead of being top dog he'll be power sharing as part of the 'formidable four'...

Rebs said...

Sorry, I don't think so. Sure he'll still win some tournament here and there but I think his days being "invincible" and #1 are over. Can't you see that thing on his back?