Semi-final Friday

Rain rain — the red clay
The winds of change, leaves falling
A glass of champagne

There’s rain in the forecast. Conditions could be tricky for all four.

Rafa and Djoker have already reserved their spot in the final, in the popular tennis imagination. They are heavily favored to win their respective matches.

The likelihood of a Djokodal final is practical certainty. What more needs to be said?


Thiem has all kinds of clay game and confidence, seems to be peaking and likely could be ready to make that next step in his champion’s trajectory. But he’s playing a very motivated Novak Djokovic.

As I said, only Rafa or an utterly ascendant Thiem can trouble the Serb. Does even a brilliant Domi have the will to win three sets against the Serb? He would need to break Novak’s will, unless he can simply out play him in five. Bo5 brilliance, despite his progression at the French the last few years, is still uncharted water for Thiem.

We beliem in Thiem, but the Serb looks too complete. Let them fight to the finish.


Nadal is the king of clay, seems to have plenty of reserve in the tank, which means he will be ready to die on Philippe-Chatrier, where his legacy has thrived since it’s 2005 inception.

Federer remembers well his Roland Garros scars, the embarrassments. Other even non-clay losses to Rafa all have their genesis here, on Chatrier.

He has beaten Rafa the last six times, but there’s very little chance this even partially, even minimally eclipses the many many losses he’s sustained to Nadal.

My qualification of Nadal’s superiority in tomorrow’s semi-final clash with Federer is the weather and Ljubičić. Federer’s win streak against Nadal involves the Croat’s influence. We have discussed this at-length.

I have to give that credit. Along with Federer’s recent play, despite the age and his trouble with power (see Thiem, Wawrinka, Djokovic, etc.), he hopefully plays the Spaniard tough.

However, a Djokodal final has to be the thesis of this draw; none the less, we understand and welcome the complication of said argument.

Enjoy the tennis, folks.

6 thoughts on “Semi-final Friday

  1. dlima1987

    Federer just lost this match not on tennis but on his weak mentality against Nadal. I guess not even Ivan can turn that around


    1. snambi2014

      hmm, are you sure about that? It is crazy out there (wind wise) and Rafa is very solid …even in those conditions it seems Roger tried and failed on his play rather than simply throwing out because of mentality(may be third set)…….


    2. Elmar

      Totally agree on your opinion. Federer was long considered the best player on windy and cold weather with some memorable examples from night sessions at US Open and even a not so recent win over Nadal in Indian Wells where conditions were exactly like this – cold & windy.
      Federer did not come out with the right attitude on court. His comments on his chances like “Nadal might feel sick, might be raining, several delays etc…” all come to show how uncertain he always feels on clay and that his game and mindset are not the most important factors for success….

      There was not a single Ljubičić backhand seen troughout the match and he was able to perform those even on slow hard courts versus the same player back in 2017! His net approach, improved by Edberg was mediocre. His 1st game play in the 1st set was the only effort he put throughout the match, made some errors, some beautiful shots , had a break point , did not convert it and the match was long lost in his mind. Back in 2011 with his old game he was more than capable of beating him with an amazing play till 5:2 lead and a missed ball on a set point. The only thing that looked better on this match were the number save break point opportunities during the 1st set. From 2nd set on was the worse performance on RG since 2008 maybe…

      Federer totally looked like he did not care, not motivated, a spectator who won a ticket to hit with Rafa on a windy afternoon. This could have been the most inspiring match in tennis should he showed up. It is a pity he secretly improved his backhand, net game, strategy last few years , intentionally skipping the clay to make a statement when he comes back but ….


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