Tennis Needs Nadal vs Federer

federer french openThe Federer-Nadal rivalry has been the focal point of tennis over the past years, but with Federer’s breakthrough at the French Open and Nadal’s bad knees, is this rivalry fading?

Roger Federer finally captured the elusive career Grand Slam with a straight sets victory over Robin Soderling and looks to take back his Wimbledon Crown in a couple weeks. Federer’s streak of five consecutive Wimbledon titles was broken by Rafael Nadal last year. Possibly the high point of the rivalry, Nadal conquered Federer in a five-set thriller that gave Nadal his number one ranking.

The tables are turning though as Nadal lost to Soderling at Roland Garros, his first ever loss at the French Open. Now, Rafa has bigger problems though as his knees may force him to withdraw from Wimbledon. Nadal has not played in that many tournaments this year so if he has to pull himself out The All England Club, it means he has serious issues with his knees. Tennis requires such intense torque from a player’s knees that any issue is extremely serious. If Rafa does permanent damage to his knees, then his career could be over very quickly. Continue reading “Tennis Needs Nadal vs Federer”

Nadal vs Federer Again

Here we go. This Nadal/Federer final is basically the only one of my Wimbledon predictions to come true and I’m glad it did. This could easily be the biggest match of either players career and it could be one of the best tennis matches ever. Of course, it could also be a straight-set massacre like the French Open Final where Nadal destroyed Federer 6-1 6-3 6-0. Before I even discuss the possible outcomes and resulting legacies of this match, it is remarkable to think that these two men are playing each other in yet another Grand Slam final. This is the third consecutive year that Nadal and Federer have met in the Wimbledon final with Federer having won the previous two, including a five-set thriller last year. The top two players in the year are so far above everyone else that they are a combined 86-15 in singles’ matches this year, with three of those 15 losses occurring when Federer and Nadal faced each other. They have a combine 7 singles titles this year (5 by Nadal), which will increase to 8 after today. Even more amazing, Federer has not lost a set and Nadal has lost only one set at Wimbledon this year.

Last year’s Wimbledon Final was an instant classic, but this year could be even better. Federer is the best grass-court player in the game, having won five consecutive Wimbledon Championships and going after his sixth today. Nadal is playing at the highest level of his career, dominating the French Open like he is Bjorn Borg and running through Wimbledon like he is Federer. Now Nadal faces the ultimate test. If he is able to upset Federer and take home the Wimbledon Championship, Nadal will become the first players since Bjorn Borg in 1980 to win the French Open and Wimbledon in the same year. Federer meanwhile has some history of his own at stake. If he wins, Federer will become the first player in the Open era to win six consecutive Wimbledon championships. Continue reading “Nadal vs Federer Again”

2008 Wimbledon

The grass-court major is underway in England as Roger Federer easily defeated Dominik Hrbaty (6-3, 6-2, 6-3) in his first round match. Other ranked seeds to win yesterday include number 3 Novak Djokivic (7-5, 2-6, 6-3, 6-0) and number 5 David Ferrer (7-6, 6-3, 1-3, retired). Number 7 David Nalbandanian was the only high ranked seed to lose in the first round, falling to Frank Dancevic (6-4, 6-2, 6-4). Rafael Nadal is currently in action against German Andreas Beck and Nadal has taken the first set 6-4. Four seed Nikolay Davydenko is also in action against a German. He’s facing Benjamin Becker and has dropped the first two sets (4-6, 4-6) so he will need a comeback to make it into the second round. Continue reading “2008 Wimbledon”