That’s So Nishikori


Are you kidding me?  Well, of course not.

Do you remember the 2016 WTF, where Kei somehow got himself into the SF where he faced a fading Djokovic? Result there? 61 61 to the Djoker. Unreal that Kei can actually play a bit of tennis, but then either through injury or incompetence go into the tank like this. Is it an actual tank?

Thiem needs to beat Federer today. That’s as objective as it is sympathetic to the Austrian’s fanbase. You know I am not necessarily sympathetic toward fanbases. The sport needs Thiem to overcome a legend like he almost did in NYC v Nadal. Even battling Federer to a three-set loss here would be bad for Thiem.

It’s time for Thiem.

10 thoughts on “That’s So Nishikori

  1. PRF - Władysław Janowski

    As you have seen, it was an ATP+Team8 deal against Thiem. ATP needs Federer at least in SF against Djokovic. Or another deal – with Anderson, so Fed can double bagel him tomorrow and finish first in the group. Then another smaller deal with Zverev and here we are – in the final. What now? Remember 2016 and Federer giving the match away because of not feeling “competitive enough”? I guess, this year Djoker (understanding ATP priorities) will give a revange 😉

    Somehow on the margin Thiem can still show tomorrow, how good he can play now pn hard (if he could survive yesterday’s fixed loss).
    If I was ATP/WADA and it was not my deal, I would instantly accuse Thiem for tanking. But this didn’t happen – what was it? I know Thiem’s body language by heart. Have never seen him like that before.
    Maybe new story for you How-Federer-Ruined-Tennis-Twice.


    1. Ha ha ha ha.

      I will respond to the Federer Thiem match, but it just looked like a better match for Federer (at this age he’s going to play well and then shit the bed off and on).

      Thiem’s ground strokes are too big in terms of the swing pattern. He hits the shit out of the ball, but it’s too telegraphed and high risk. He hit 3,009,567 balls long against Federer.

      He just needs more variety. He’s closer the BL, but now he needs more for his opponent to deal with in terms of variety, etc.


      1. PRF - Władysław Janowski

        From what I’m observing in his current game, he needs to understand better the variety of the opponent. This was maybe his weakest point against Federer. Federer hit short balls and Thiem was in troubles to find out, how to hit them back.In many cases a dropshot would be the right answer but he tends to hit hard and deep topspin, landing often out, if the coming ball is not only short but have a low bounce. When on return the problem was, he tried to hit aggressive return all the time, which did not work (too many errors). Deep slice return was better, because Fed was careful with playing serve&volley. After such deep slice return what came back was another slice , giving Thiem time to switch to hard topspin shots, mostly leading to winners or Fed not able to get the ball or to hit something promising. In this cases (but played only few times) Thiem was mostly winning the point. His topspin shots were too hard and too fast for Fed.


      2. “In many cases a dropshot would be the right answer but he tends to hit hard and deep topspin, landing often out, if the coming ball is not only short but have a low bounce. When on return the problem was, he tried to hit aggressive return all the time, which did not work (too many errors).”

        That’s his lack of variety. You can say it’s not understanding his opponent’s variety, but it all comes back to he has too little in his bag of tricks. Federer’s claim to fame is his bag of tricks.

        Thiem looked one-dimensional out there.


  2. PRF - Władysław Janowski

    Match fixed and Thiem missing know-how (how to play he is playing as usual but still lose).
    Did you see Thiem vs. Fed, in Stuttgart 20016 (yeah, on grass). Thiem was finding all answers he needed. And this was 2 years ago.
    Let’s take an example. Return. Thiem played all-the time his kind-of-SABR-return, blindly and repeatedly, so Federer could safely serve to the body and the return was netted 100/100.From time to time Thiem returned with deep slice with no winner coming back, so he could hit fore-or backhand with topspin and Fed was lost.
    Now the question: why Thiem did not play something which worked well, but still something which not worked at all?
    My answer is FIX. Your concept, Matt?
    Thiem made 34 UE’s for the match. This cannot end with the win. Hahaha – do you think, he is still not experienced enough to know this?


  3. PRF - Władysław Janowski

    Yes, Matt, I know, why Federer can be still alive, even if legs don’t work so well anymore.
    But – Coric os more one-dimensional thanThiem and was able to win twice. Thiem was too erratic also on serve, where you don’t depend so much on who is the opponent. Only in the way, you know, how good is the opponent on return.
    Well, I can survive Thiem’s loss and lack of brilliance vs. Federer. Let’s hope, he shows it today. Of course Thiem should go for more variety and play a less readable game. Some things you cannot learn so easy. Federer’s fake shots are something, I don’t see many playing things like these. Including Novak. Novak’s strength is playing always with a plan for next 2-3 shots even if they prove then not needed to hit. If something changes on the other side, Novak can start new plan instantly. Thiem is more of instinct game. His plan is just the next shot. He was not so in young years. It’s Bresnik’s school. I guess, it was necessary to push Thiem to Top10. Maybe now he needs more (mot necessarily another coach). He needs to learn himself or go more consistent in his one-shot plans and steady adaption. It’s bad for him, if he cannot dominate points with his shots. Against Federer he could not, but not only because of Federer’s smart game.


  4. PRF - Władysław Janowski

    Thiem needs live balls coming so he can get rhythm for own hitting. Federer’s strategy (good one) was to send him every kind of dead balls. I know, what it’s about from my own playing.I play often partners, who don’t have skills to hit classic shots. They play just lots of dead balls and I’m struggling to make them alive to hit my classic shots. I’m playing well and losing to someone who completely misses skills but sends always dead balls. Maybe this is Thiems weakness.


  5. PRF - Władysław Janowski

    Whatever the reason (fix or not) for how Thiem did play against Federer, Whatever the reasons for every funny result in this group, Thiem can leave London with good feeling. I don’t believe, Anderson would even try to beat Federer so, Thiem advances. If this happens, I will take back every word I ever wrote about fixing or arranging things in ATP.
    Don’t know all permutations, but there is some, allowing Federer to win the group and avoid Djoker in semis. This would be of course THE FIX OF THE YEAR. And this is what I really expect 😉 Do you?
    With a bit of luck and avoiding his standard slow starts, he could have defeated Anderson. Under (somehow) normal conditions he should have defeated Federer. And today finish winning the group and hoping for Federer to advance too 🙂


  6. PRF - Władysław Janowski

    Are you aware of Thiem’s “trick” to take off a bit of pace from his racket by changing the strioging pattern (vertical gut strings from vertical to horizontal and horizontal synthetic strings to vertical. Thiem kissed those strings after the match. What a grateful and graceful boy, hahaha …


  7. PRF - Władysław Janowski

    What the hell is ATP Cup? Someone trying to undermine Federer’s Kingsdom? Noivak was there to unveil.
    Now we will have 3x circus? Reformed DC, RLC and ATPC ???


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