A hundred years from now they’ll be talking about the beautiful Federer, the graceful Federer, the respectful Federer, the caring Federer, the decent Federer, the dominant Federer, the effortless Federer, the resilient Federer, the humble Federer, the one-and-only Federer. Will Swanton, The Australian
Breezing through seven matches
By Roger Childs
To win a grand slam tennis title you need to win seven matches and it’s gets harder as you go.
Swiss maestro Roger Federer has just done that to win a record eighth Wimbledon title without losing a set.
He’s coming up for 36 and has been written off many time in the last few years.
On Sunday he confounded his critics by beating Marin Cilic 6-3 6-1 6-4 to take his 19th grand slam: four more that his great rival Rafael Nadal.
The two greats
Federer, and the 31 year old Nadal, have dominated men’s tennis so far in 2017. Late last year they were both out with injury, and Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic were ranked one and two.
However neither the Brit nor the Serb has won a tournament in 2017, while Federer has picked up five and Nadal four.
Who is the greater player? In matches against each other Nadal leads 23-14, however Federer has won the last four contests.
Rafa is a very fine player on all surfaces and his extraordinary success on clay is legendary. Like Federer, he won the Roland Garros without dropping a set to extend his record in Paris to 10 titles!
The Swiss legend however has much the better record on grass, hard courts and indoors.
The jury may still be out on who is the GOAT (Greatest of all time), but at present Roger Federer has the much superior record.
The kids enjoyed Dad’s win
While the son, husband and father was doing the hard work on Wimbledon’s centre court, the family watched with justifiable pride.
- Wife Mirka, herself a very good player in earlier times
- Mother and father Lynette and Robert
- Twin girls Myla and Charlene
- Twin boys Lenny and Leo
- Sister Diana
The visual media were not slow to feature the family and there were delightful scenes at the trophy presentations, especially when one of the girls showed her little brother the best way to clap their famous father.
The greatest sportsman in history?
This is a bold claim, however Will Swanton in The Australian is making it. (See the quote at the top.)
Few would deny his supremacy in the sport of tennis and part of his greatness lies in his mastery of all aspects of the game.
He has a strong serve which nets him frequent aces, because it is hard for opponents to pick the line. Federer’s ground strokes are also powerful, and his excellent judgement and superb placement result in many winners. He is also a great retriever of the ball and often beats his opponents with tightly angled cross-court passing shots.
He is not a baseline slugfest exponent and frequently comes to the net to quickly polish off rallies with brilliant volleying.
Crowds around the world love the way he performs, because he varies his game, is a risk taker, has impeccable on-court manners and plays some shots that others won’t even attempt.
The Swiss maestro is a worthy champion and, currently, the best men’s tennis player on the planet.