Roger Wilting

Well, he looked to be in control of that match heading to the fourth set and even through-out much of the fourth. But a couple of double faults at 40-0 at 5-6? This was a bit of a disaster for Roger. I thought the match was over once he handed that set to Raonic. You have to get to a  TB there. Even if Federer rallies in the fifth, another five setter?

There’s not much more to say, although I will certainly have a few things to say – you can count on that. Federer had another WB finals appearance in hand. I think getting to a TB in the fourth would have put even more pressure on the Canadian who started to look pretty vulnerable. Instead, Federer appeared to feel the pressure. Again, two double faults?

This fourth set choke along with the fifth set break of serve by Raonic initiated a reading lesson for my twelve-year-old son who was watching with me. Roger, in either case, would save a BP (or SP in the 4th) and let loose his standard “Come on!” The crowd would get excited, my son would feel the energy, move forward on the couch cushion. I would interrupt this nonsensical exuberance by pointing out that he is still in massive trouble, barely hanging-on despite the brilliance of that one point.

One of my astute readers characterized the big 3 once in a comment, months ago now –  sorry to have forgotten who it was. But the characterizations were solid, the one of Federer focusing on his brilliance about the point, playing the perfect shot, the artistry of the game exhibited in that momentary flash of genius. But it’s just one point. That has been, in my humble opinion, part of the problem with Federer’s game – the aesthetics sometimes supersede the competition. The crowd, my son, many tennis fans (even me on occasion) can get caught-up in this artistry. I heard Courier talk about it the other day calling a match, and Cahill brought it up in today’s call. I was not interested in those flashes of tennis intelligence. Roger needed to bear-down, get to a TB, put more pressure on Raonic. Or in the fifth, hold serve. Don’t blink. Roger blinked.

Nadal and Djokovic have become famous by acknowledging that they can’t match Federer’s shot arsenal and athleticism. Instead, they have adopted the more practical game of creating pressure and rising to those moments when one has a break opportunity, has to hold serve, has to jump on the opponent early here, all in order to win the competition.

Sure, Federer is competitive. But this image of Roger wilting in a big match has become a somewhat familiar sight. Solid run from the 34 year-old, but congratulations to the Canadian.

Murray is up a set in the second SF, as we speak. Lendl is licking his chops.

3 thoughts on “Roger Wilting

  1. Nambi

    Yeah, have to agree Matt…I haven’t really thought about artistry angle, but it become very common for last few years he wilted this way when he had clear opportunity….Earlier days could be different but for sure that’s the case last few years..Weirdly he lost all three breaks after being leading in serve..

    In Overall context, he kind of lost advantage in first set itself….Except that 30-30 point where Milos comes up with good, he kind of broke himself there with UFE and DF….Never that going to help with big servers like Milos….Same with 4th set end….With break there it’s almost forgone conclusion he losing 5th…

    As you said he had fair chance to make it Final (though with this form he likely have lower chances against Murray), but Credit to Milos to up his ante in late 4th set (after DF) and blast thru 5th…

    Likely Murray making final, its his title to lose now….Any other result would be surprise for me for sure…


    1. Think of how many opportunities Federer has had to win majors. Unreal, really.

      This match has that look of the 2009 USO final. Match in hand and then. . . wilt.

      Speaking of, is this the case where the tennis gods took Del Po from us, but have apparently replaced him with Raonic? Ha. Not exactly, but the big serving Canadian should be around for a few years, wreaking havoc. Too professional not to. Just needs to stay away from injury.

      Andy probably wins tomorrow, almost certainly. But what if. .


  2. Nambi

    Yep, too many Opp. for Roger for sure in last few years… I understand you may not be too familiar with Cricket, but I kind of see similar path on Roger’s and Sachin Tendulkar (arguably one of best Cricketer)… In later years, he seemingly poised to score 100 in matches (he is indeed holder for most no.of 100’s scored) which he desperately wanted to make it (as that would be 100th 100) but eventually fails after scoring 80’s & 90’s…He took around couple years to get that done (he used to score 7-8 per year) finally for one time.. In Roger’s case Its probably unrealistic we get to see another GS win…

    True, I do thinking about “What if”…..If Milos pulls out W against Andy after playing two 5 sets + one 4 set in last three matches, considering that his final whereas for Andy its 11th (with 8 loses) then I don’t know what to feel for him….We have to call him as “Bedrych of GS Finals” then I guess :-)…. To be frank, i couldn’t even imagine how bad it is for him if happen to lose….


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