Sure, Federer had shown himself to be vulnerable this year, suffering from mononucleosis early in the season, getting thumped at the French Open, and abdicating his crown at Wimbledon. His forehand suddenly wasn’t as feared. His imperiousness had been punctured by the rise of Rafael Nadal.
His defeat by Nadal in the French Open and at Wimbledon highlighted his struggles. Then came the quarterfinal defeat by James Blake in Beijing, a player whom Federer had beaten eight times out of eight.Yet, in the middle of his troubles, he won the Olympic doubles gold medal with fellow Swiss Stanislas Wawrinka.
How quick we are, though, to predict a star’s fall. All because the Swiss, who had reigned over men’s tennis with a velvety game and an iron hand for much of the last decade, only made it to the finals of two Grand Slams (losing one he’d won five straight years 9-7 in the fifth set) and the semi of the other. How lackluster! How pedestrian! Federer’s rule, it was said, was over. He’d dropped to No. 2 and was plummeting, never again to win another Slam.
Not so fast..!!!!
In thrashing Andy Murray and capturing his 5th consecutive US Open and 13th Grand Slam, Federer showed us, and perhaps even himself, that we were all much too anxious to write off a player of his ethereal caliber.
I missed that wonderful final as my dishtv receiver didn't work last Monday. I was really looking forward to that match and....gosh!! what a disappointment. Anyway, I managed to watch the highlights later.
("It's all about the wins, and that's why this is huge, this is massive." -- © Guardian News & Media Ltd 2008 )