Saturday, 24 January 2009

2Hander: The Fed of Old

I'm sorry Top, but I hope you don't think I am abusing my privileges but I really felt this needed a post in and of its own.

And Top, that shot you said you hadn't seen of Fed's, that whipped forehand half volley, it's at around 4:38...

There was a certain rawness to his game back then, but how he has changed!! There are SO many aspects to his game then that are just not there anymore. I think Tony Roche's 'interference' (The Fed's words, not mine) and the effort to try and make him into a clay courter and a more aggressive hard courter have taken over and after years of it working so well (come on, 13 Slams!) - THAT has now become the definition of Federer's game. A part of me would like to see that serve-and-volleying grass court specialist with exquisite touch and volleying re-integrated back into his game.

This match was a turning point for me and my love for tennis. I loved tennis in the days of McEnroe and Lendl. Then came the Becker-Lendl-Edberg era. I then lost quite a bit of love for The Beautiful Game from the mid-1990s to the early 2000s when Sampras, Courier, Kafelnikov, Agassi etc were running the show. I felt the game lost its flair because players were pigeon-holed as either baseliners or serve-and-volleyers. My attentions then went towards basketball.

So this match restored my faith in graceful, exquisite tennis and that it can overcome brute force, caveman style tennis. I am glad the A-Rod has added more depth to game since, I mean, he's had to, really!

There is so much more depth and dimension to his game c.f. the rest of the field, it has to be said...

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