So I’ve realised it’s been quite some time since I flexed my blogging muscles, and with Wimbledon reaching the final stages I thought now is as good a time as any to resurrect my blog.
I thought I would give my opinions and ideas about Wimbledon thus far – who has impressed me or unimpressed me, and who I think can take out the Men’s singles.
I will start with the Aussies, and the disappointment of not having one male into the second round. It’s cruel to say Australian tennis is in disarray and in “the dark ages” I believe I read somewhere. Let’s not forget that this time last year we were celebrating one of our most successful Wimbledon’s in years – Tomic showed us what he can do on the world stage by reaching the quarterfinals, knocking out the five seed Soderling along the way. (Side bar – what has happened to Soderling?! Haven’t heard about him in a while?)
But to expect Tomic to come in and repeat that performance with the added pressure of the quarterfinal appearance rankings points was unfair on the kid. After all, that’s all he is – a kid. Give him a few years to hone his supreme ability, and once his fitness matches his ability, then we will see how we can really go on the world stage. In my opinion, Tomic needs to ditch his Dad as his fulltime coach and employ someone else if he really is serious about making it.
Then there was Nadal losing in the econd round. I couldn’t believe it, Nadal couldn’t believe it and even Rosol couldn’t believe it. He said he “felt sorry” for Nadal after the match, I mean come on! That fifth set he played was one of the best fifth sets you will ever see. Rosol said he felt “in the zone” which is something that most tennis players rarely experience, but when they do, they are unstoppable. My favourite example of a player being in the zone was Marat Safin at the 2000 US Open where he beat Pete Sampras in the final.
In the years to come, Safin never reached those levels again, a reason many put behind his humorous outbursts during matches.
And to make things worse, Rosol lost in straight sets the next round. I am almost certain Rosol will go down as “that dude who beat Nadal that one time at Wimbledon but never did anything again.”
Poor guy, but then again at least he did that. My biggest achievement in tennis was once beating current top Aussie juniorNick Kyrgios in a doubles match when I was 17 and he was 13.
Speaking of, Nick is into the quarterfinals, and so is defending champ Luke Saville and if they both win, they face-off against each other for a spot in the final. So at least we still have some juniors doing well, even though the notoriously difficult junior to senior transition still awaits both boys, they are off to a good start.
Look ahead to the two semifinals- Novak v Fed-Ex and Tsonga v Murray.
Novak v Fed-Ex:
Surprisingly, this is the first time the two have met on grass, which is why I believe Fed will take this in four of the toughest sets imaginable. The form Fed showed against Mikhail Youzhny was ridiculous. I have never seen anyone toyed with like that; Fed was the puppet master, driving Youzhny all over the court using big forehands and backhands, crisp volleys and slices on both sides. At one stage, Youzhny even asked the great Agassi for some advice, which highlights how helpless he was. I doubt Agassi would have been able to crack the Fed master class.
I think if Fed can really mix it up by getting to the net, using the angles of the court and really going for it, you get the feeling this could be his time. If he manages to win the whole thing, he will return to No.1 in the world, an amazing feat.
On Novak, he has such amazing defensive skills, undoubtably the best in the game, but on grass they are nullified due to the speed and bounce of the court, so I really believe Fed is in with a great shot here.
Tsonga v Murray:
You know what; I think Murray would have preferred Nadal won than lost. Now, he HAS to reach the final, otherwise he will be branded a choker and useless for another year, which is highly unfair. Imagine if he lost to the Spanish Bulldog Ferrer – the claws would have been out and he would have been ravaged by the media. This could/will be a defining moment in Murray’s career, it’s his best shot to reach the final of his home tournament, something he has never done, but wowzers there is some huge pressure on the guy.
On Tsonga, I feel he has almost gone under the radar this tournament, well as much as Tsonga ever can, with all the talk focusing around Nadal firstly, then Baker’s fairytale run and now Murray, I could easily see Tsonga slip into a final here. After all, if he brings his A game, he can beat anyone on his day.
This match has five sets written all over it, if I were a betting man I would put money on it. Wait, I am a betting man. Hmmm…
My prediction is Murray in five; his consistency will be too much although Tsonga will show flashes of brilliance at times.
900 words later and I hope you enjoyed reading! I’ll be back again in a few months when I get the urge to spill my thoughts onto paper.