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2019 Nitto ATP Finals...ATP 1500...London, England

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  • #31
    Originally posted by stroke View Post
    I would say Roger is the favorite at this point.
    Just finished watching the match. I think Djokovic was not 100%. He was missing fairly easy shots and the ability to get to the corner was diminished. I know the court is fast but Novak has played on fast courts before and hung in there much better.

    He has bounced back many times before but somehow I get the feeling that this will be another dip for him due to physical problems. He has not been the same player since Wimbledon.

    Nadal also looked wobbly. Medvedev kind of gave the match away.

    Meanwhile, Fed looks like a spring chicken. Bouncing all over the place and dominating the match.

    Roger loves to play indoors on fast surfaces. He will be hard to beat the way he is playing right now.

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    • #32
      Originally posted by stroke View Post

      I personally disagree. We have 4 Majors, 2 on hard courts with roofs at times. I do not think an indoor major would be a good thing.
      Ah, but the old US Open and Wimbledon were fast and outdoors. I mean look at Agassi and Fed from 2005 or Sampras and Fed from 2001. There is no way this is the same surface they use today.

      They could speed up one of the four slams. No need to make it indoors.

      Comment


      • #33
        Stephanos Tsitsipas halfway home to the Trifecta at the Tour Championships as he takes the first set from Fafa Nadal 7-6. Remember about the snake...remember how Medvedev forgot to get the horse in the barn. It ain't over until the fat Lady sings. The court definitely favours Tsitsipas but I am not certain that he knows one hundred percent how to take full advantage of it. But it has run true to form as for Roger Federer. Federer won a huge majority of the points that were less than five strokes. He knows how to make that happen.

        With Tsitsipas' height I would still consider his serve vastly underachieving. He should just be dominating his serve. He did end the tie-break with an ace. It isn't like it is a liability as I wrote and then deleted about EdWeiss' kid. But there is more potential in it. A vast amount. But I will bet that the coach he has in his corner has no idea what it is. Unimpressed with Monsieur whatever his name is. Very, very unimpressed.

        Come on Stephanos. Bully the bully. Get in his face and send his sorry ass to the locker room. You got to be like that. I once told Nicky that...the Serbian fellow that used to post here now and again. You got to be like that.

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        • #34
          Originally posted by don_budge View Post
          Stephanos Tsitsipas halfway home to the Trifecta at the Tour Championships as he takes the first set from Fafa Nadal 7-6. Remember about the snake...remember how Medvedev forgot to get the horse in the barn. It ain't over until the fat Lady sings. The court definitely favours Tsitsipas but I am not certain that he knows one hundred percent how to take full advantage of it. But it has run true to form as for Roger Federer. Federer won a huge majority of the points that were less than five strokes. He knows how to make that happen.

          With Tsitsipas' height I would still consider his serve vastly underachieving. He should just be dominating his serve. He did end the tie-break with an ace. It isn't like it is a liability as I wrote and then deleted about EdWeiss' kid. But there is more potential in it. A vast amount. But I will bet that the coach he has in his corner has no idea what it is. Unimpressed with Monsieur whatever his name is. Very, very unimpressed.

          Come on Stephanos. Bully the bully. Get in his face and send his sorry ass to the locker room. You got to be like that. I once told Nicky that...the Serbian fellow that used to post here now and again. You got to be like that.
          The fat lady never sung. At least not for the next Gen, or at least not yet. When I think about Nadal vs. both Medvedev and Tsitsipas, I still have to wonder, under stress with the match on the line, does being a bit too tall (or short) hamper a player. Nadal is just quicker on his feet and even for a defensive player he ventures into the net better than his taller competitors.

          Tsitsipas is on the edge of too tall. Medvedev and Zverev definitely are. They are just not mobile inside the court at their height. Tennis continues to be about who can get into the court and win a point. Roger is the testament to the fact that the rules might look different. Maybe everyone thinks you can win by playing way back. Yes, you can win but getting to the top is a whole other ballgame. And in that game tennis is not getting taller and getting into the court and attacking is still as important as it ever was. Maybe not for the day-to-day top 100 play. But as you scale up the ladder, 6-6'4" is a good range and with the right tools someone on the outer edges can get to the top.

          6'1" is still the idea height for a man. Nadal showed twice that this was true. We can say it is mental but the physical becomes the mental. And physically the bull is mobile and the bulls apparent were not.

          Maybe I will be proven wrong this weekend and one of the "tall" guys will win.

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          • #35
            Oddmakers now have Fed at 4/6 to win the tournament, clearly the strong favorite. Thiem is next at 3/1. Stefanos was the 3rd favorite at 9/2 before his loss to Nadal. Nadal, previously the 4th favorite, moves up a slot. These conditions favor simply the best tennis player period, and that is no doubt Fed, who has every shot in tennis like no one ever has.

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            • #36
              Early on, it does not look encouraging for the potential blockbuster of Fed vs Nadal

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              • #37
                Originally posted by stroke View Post
                Early on, it does not look encouraging for the potential blockbuster of Fed vs Nadal
                There is only one reason that I would have liked to see more of this most obnoxious character is to watch him be humiliated by Roger Federer...again. My advice to Tsitsipas was spot on and Nadal is a snake like no other. Stepanos could not "maintain pressure on his opponent" and paid the ultimate price in a tennis match for not doing so. So here's the thing about "Seņor Zorrillo" he has no class. We all saw how the crowd was such a huge factor in the Federer/Djokovic match...well it became a factor in the Tsitsipas/Nadal match as well. Not as bad because Nadal is not nearly as beloved in the tennis community as Federer. He has his followers. But very few of them are as passionately engaged with him as with Federer.

                The crowd factor. Roger barely lifted a finger to bring on this amazing outpouring of support. He doesn't have to. He is the genuine article. Nadal? He's contrived. Everything his does is based on attention getting behaviour and controlling the entire performance. He goes to outlandish lengths to do so. All of it. I was watching him with his water bottles and wondered to myself what kind of moron plays with his water bottles in such a manner? Answer...the most egotistical, controlling idiot I have ever witnessed playing professional sports in all of my entire life. Nadal was begging the crowd for their support. It couldn't have been any more obvious as every time he hit a good shot he gave his best gigantic fist pump. What theatrics. He is as bad as NBA or NFL players who celebrate their highlight plays. He has ATTENTION SEEKING DEFICIT DISORDER...that is all this is. The OCD is merely a play...his own MO. All of it. Bush league as my dear old Dad would have said. As Stefanos said..."it is a talent to make your opponent play bad". Terrible talent. Roger has the proper demeanour. He is paid to hit great shots. When he does...he puts his head down as if he is only doing what he is supposed to. Not acting like it was an act of God.

                I don't suppose anyone noticed that three of the four players are using the one-handed backhand in the semi's of this year ending event. I am glad that some seem to have awakened to the possibility that the speed of the courts are one of the reasons that tennis is where it is at today. But speed up the surface just a tad and look what has happened. It probably is just a coincidence. Unlikely.

                So it is the senior citizen of the draw versus a player who I was drawn to early on in one semi. In the other is a truly emerging workhorse and another player who has had a bad case of deer in the headlights syndrome. Three splendid one-handed backhands. A quicker court where winning the point in under five shots is paramount. Too bad they all aren't using Maxplys, Kramers or Slazengers. Watch for Roger to toe the baseline and fire on all cylinders with the serve. If he does he roughs up young Tsitsipas. It isn't a given though. Tsitsipas is growing and evolving. Dominic Theim looks to be the tougher of the two mentally but Zverev has won this event. He might be coming out of his self induced hypnotic doldrum. But why does he lift his shirt to expose his abdomen on every single serve? That is really obnoxious.

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                • #38
                  I have noticed the shirt thing by Alex and also find it annoying. And the necklaces, but he is hardly the first offender there, but for whatever reason, he seems to have taken that to a new level of annoyance. Maybe he should just wear some kind of midriff shirt.

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                  • #39
                    Originally posted by don_budge View Post
                    Btw...it was the court not the crowd that did Novak Djokovic in tonight. The problem was he couldn't do anything to shut them down...shut them up. On a slower court he can do that. But he couldn't prevent Roger steamrolling him tonight and nothing he did quieted down the crowd. I have said it many times in the past but just to remind anyone reading...Roger on a fast court is going to have his way with Novak every single time. What is more...on a slick grass court and a wooden racquet Novak would have had a difficult time beating anyone in the top one hundred in 1981. He was very uncertain around the net and getting there was impossible. Roger used this area of the court to his advantage.
                    Fed demonstrated how much serve accuracy( in wide and shallow areas of service box) and a slice backhand can achieve, especially on a fast court.

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                    • #40
                      What a performance by Tsitsipas. And he is so watchable.

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                      • #41
                        Originally posted by doctorhl View Post
                        Fed demonstrated how much serve accuracy( in wide and shallow areas of service box) and a slice backhand can achieve, especially on a fast court.
                        Summed up in a nutshell. The good doctor. Roger is the best server in professional tennis in terms of Classic motion and Classic tactics. One could argue that he is the only one. His foundation of serve and tactics was originally to compete on slick grass. This was before the "powers that be" in the tennis braintrust or lack of braintrust decided upon the current course.

                        The slice backhand is just a awesome shot. It is his go to tactical decider. He had a tough going yesterday and both of the points that doctorhl make were lacking in Federer's performance or rather lack of performance. I sat here watching the match with my protege Gustaf and Roger looked to be...old. Not old old. But old enough to be out of synch. Who knows...he has had problems in the past in London. Maybe the match with Djokovic was enough for the veteran. Revenge for one of the toughest losses of his career. He was absolutely beaming after that match. Gushing about how well he played. As if he couldn't believe it himself that he had reached that level of performance.

                        Knowing what I know about tennis players and their performance...they are their own worst critics. But Roger had played an "enlightened" match of white light proportions and he knew it and couldn't hide his satisfaction. At his age...at ever age...performance is the prime indicator. At thirty-eight years old mentally, physically and emotionally you have to be all there. There was/is a indicator of performance that used to be aware of a bit. Based on the sin curve for the three elements. It will come to me. But if you follow the indicators over time you get an bit of insight as to a possible cause for performance...be it good or bad. Biorhythms. That's the ticket. But during the course of the sin curve there are what you call critical days...days that one of the elements might leave you feeling out of whack. Or maybe two elements are askew making things a bit more complicated. Then there is the dreaded day once in a blue moon where all of the elements have you in the dog house. You are basically fucked. Just a theory.

                        Stefanos Tsitsipas is going to the finals of the ATP Tour Championships. God Bless him. A refreshing young man. A beautiful one-handed backhand. He is going to meet Dominic Theim...another beautiful example of how human beings evolve to higher levels. Another one-handed backhand. The surface is quicker at the championships. For years I have been the voice in the wilderness continuously harping on well...just about everything. Taking the position against the majority is alarming to some but somehow it is in my wheelhouse. It is my comfort zone. I take great solace. I don't really care if it is everyone else on the planet against me. don_quixote.

                        But tennis is cyclical...as well as political. There are often influences that have come from outside of the game itself. The game being a holy place in the minds of men that have played it for literally forever. With respect. With honour. Somehow we have come back to one of the origins. If only symbolically. I, for one, feel vindicated. Almost to the point where I will quit. Almost there. So is Roger. God Bless you Roger. That match against Novak Djokovic had the same redeeming effect on me as it did you. Thank you Lord.

                        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=46pKSylbdSc

                        Comment


                        • #42
                          Originally posted by stroke View Post
                          What a performance by Tsitsipas. And he is so watchable.
                          Yep...he is almost what you call adorable. What kind of future does he have in store for him? Time will tell...as it creeps on.

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                          • #43
                            Thiem is an oh so slight favorite over Tsitsipas. It is not often one sees these kind of odds in a big final. I personally like Tsitsipas in this one, but as we all know, these 2 are so close in all aspects of the game and both are so likeable. A real credit to the best of tennis.

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                            • #44
                              Originally posted by stroke View Post
                              Thiem is an oh so slight favorite over Tsitsipas. It is not often one sees these kind of odds in a big final. I personally like Tsitsipas in this one, but as we all know, these 2 are so close in all aspects of the game and both are so likeable. A real credit to the best of tennis.
                              I missed the match. The streaming site I use failed to deliver. Usually very dependable. What a great match up between Stefanos Tsitsipas and Dominic Theim. One-handed backhands!!! The ATP Tour Finals dominated by one-handed backhands. Interesting turn of events. Stefanos has a big one under his belt now which only increases the size of the target on his back now. I like that he lost the first set and battled back. This was one of the traits that first got my attention to him. He will need this kind of resilience to eat his way up the food chain. I wonder if this will effect his ranking.

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                              • #45
                                One takeaway from the year ending Tour Championships is the obvious inevitable changing of the guard. Also there are the five players to consider among the youngsters. What lies ahead in the future?

                                It's difficult to tell. I mean...it's hard enough to figure out what they have just seen. Signs...I see signs. The signs of things to come. I think that Zverev and Berretinni are sort of wild cards so far. Neither has shown the ability to sustain a high level of play for a significant period of time. This is a hallmark of greatness and Roger Federer is playing in his 23rd season on the tour. Yet he climbed to a height that even surprised him during this tournament. Unfortunately he couldn't sustain it when he should have by all accounts. There really was no rhyme or reason for such a mediocre...poor by his standards against the eventual winner. Go figure. He's getting long in the tooth...was that it? Did he not want to face Theim who dominated him as well in the first round? There are a number of permutations and combinations...with varying degrees of relevance.

                                But the other three...Medvedev, Theim and Tsitsipas are showing signs of being there. All three are showing signs of staring adversity in the face and just sucking it up and playing through it. I noticed this trait in Stefanos early on in his rise. He was losing the first set to some of these really good journeymen and playing through it. Just believing in himself that he belonged when the result initially said he didn't. That is the kind of belief that is endemic in the champion. Once again in the final he lost the first set to a player who arguably had the hot hand at the end of the year and he bounced back. Never losing sight of the finish line and somehow managing to get the horse there...in the barn where he belongs.

                                Dominic Theim has also shown a lot of resolve and even in this tournament which he didn't win he showed some real grit and courage. He just mowed down Federer in the first round then he played it toe to toe with the ultimate tennis backboard...Novak Djokovic. After losing the first set as well. Novak is usually a sure thing if he wins the first set. Did he show just a shadow of vulnerability? I think he did. A chink in his armour. So Dominic is the real thing I think. He is going to be a tough out for anyone in the future. But does he feel comfortable with his new status as one of the elite or does he get that deer in the headlights look too. He has in the past. It's developmental. There are levels to the game...that was a book by Arthur Ashe in the 70's by the way.

                                Daniil Medvedev was basically stretched a little thin at the end of the year and that is another reference to my nickname for him..."Mr. Pencil". A pencil in the hands of the right assassin is a lethal weapon so that is no belittling comment. Not at all. This skinny guy is as tough as nails. Even as Nadal ran him down and drove the stake through his heart this guy was scoffing at the idea. The very idea. He knew very well that he was failing...physically. He didn't have the juice. This fellow had the longest season of all. By far. He is one tough customer and I love his attitude.

                                So there you go. Three players that have set themselves apart from the rest of the up and comers. That is not to say that in the next year or two that they too won't be overtaken by the hungry wolves who are going to be nipping at their heels. But now all three are going to double down and go to work with brass tacks. Knuckle down. It's interesting. One never knows about the future. Or do they? I remind you...three of the four were one-handed backhands on a quicker surface. The tennis while not as perfect was actually better. Points were quicker. Less mind numbing, fucking repetitive, boring beyond imagination back court play. The worm has turned...or?

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