We all know how Roger Federer recently decided to bow out of the clay court season, hoping to make up at the Wimbledon, right? The step would have been understandable if Federer had an injury scare, but when you consider how Federer is only ditching the clay court for the sake of “self-preservation”, it has got to raise a few eye-brows, especially when you consider his age. What Roger Federer needs to realize is that he is not getting any younger, meaning that he needs to win as many titles as possible, before his illustrious career comes to a close.
Federer, in this regard, needs to learn a trick or two from Rafael Nadal. Nadal recently participated in the Monte Carlo Masters, which is a tournament that he has already won ten times. Nadal has, freshly, recovered from an injury, yet he is determined to win the Monte Carlo Masters for the eleventh time. It would have been much easier for Nadal to sit this one out and target the Wimbledon, similar to Federer, but he refrained from doing it, regardless of how lacking in glamor his possible win at the Monte Carlo Masters might be.
It is true that Rafael Nadal has had to deal with a fair share of injuries, throughout his career, but the fact remains that Nadal is nothing short of an example when it comes to self-motivation, determination and heart. Federer, especially at the twilight of his career, needs to borrow a little heart from his adversary if he is to make his last years on the tennis count memorable for not only himself but his entire fan base, around the world, as well. The world wants MORE of Roger Federer!
Video link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=97AIaeE1WAQ
We all have been told, time and again, that passing comments on something you know little of is nothing short of a sin. However, the captain of the Indian Cricket Team, Virat Kohli, appears to be oblivious to this simple word of advice. If he wasn’t, then he would not have made the kind of a comment that he has made recently.
According to Virat Kohli, Roger Federer has been defying logic by remaining on the top of the world of tennis, in spite of his age. Virat Kohli, who is perhaps the best batsman in the modern era, did not fall short of making a claim that reeks of favoritism but lacks substance. If you peer at the claim closely, you will realize that it portrays Federer to still be as good on the court as he was back in the old days. True tennis fanatics—unlike Virat Kohli—will know, however, that such is not the case.
If it was, Federer would not have lost the number 1 world spot in the tennis rankings, recently, to a player—Rafael Nadal—who hasn’t stepped into the court in months. On top of that, when you consider how the recent victories of Federer have come at a time when Murray, Nadal and Djokovic were out of competition due to injuries, caution has to be exercised before making exuberant claims of Federer’s greatness.
Regardless of how surreal Federer’s legacy might be, it is a fact that he is a mere shadow of the player he once was. To say that Federer is still the kind of a player he was back in his prime would, actually, be a disgrace to Federer, considering how his prime years were unlike anything that has ever been witnessed in the world of tennis. But you can’t explain that to a cricketer, or can you?
The usage of the word “fitness” in a sentence involving the name of Rafael Nadal is a bit too familiar for tennis fanatics, considering how the Spaniard is always in the news, not only for his magnificent performances but injury scares as well. Nadal, recently, fell prey to another injury that has kept him out of the tennis court for quite a few months. Regardless of how he might be ranked number one in the sport, in spite of not having hit a ball in months, it is a fact that Nadal’s career is going downhill.
Bearing all of this in mind, the fact that Rafael Nadal will be headlining a video game should not be a surprise for anyone, considering how he is still one of the most beloved icons of the game. However, the question arises: would the current “world number one” not prolong his career by focusing more on his fitness on the “real” tennis court, rather than choosing to headline video games? Nadal is 31 years old, and if he is to challenge Roger Federer’s tally of Grand Slam titles, he is going to have to get a hold of his fitness…fast!
While Nadal will always be fully fit in the video game, it is a fact that the feat won’t be repeatable in the world that matters, especially when you consider how the player is unable to go even a few months without catching a niggle, here or there. Taking this into perspective, it has to be said that Nadal should quit worrying about being remembered because of a video game and get running on the path of ensuring that he is remembered as the player with the most Grand Slam title. All he needs to do is take a page from the book of his biggest adversary: Roger Federer!
Gone are the days when tennis stars looked for fame and publicity only when they were on the court by their performances. With the recent surge in television shows that comprise of experts commenting on current players, the former stars have found a way of lingering in the limelight as well.
However, the limelight would be well deserved if they presented such insights which were not already understood by the common following of tennis. It, certainly, is a sorry sight when a former tennis icon tries to stay relevant by merely stating the obvious.
Former British female number one, Annabel Croft, recently said on Sky Sports that the era of the domination of the “Big Four” on men’s tennis appears to be over. According to her, Federer, Nadal, Djokovic and Murray are no longer the only fancied men to win the grand slam titles. If you think about how long these four men have ruled over the tennis courts around the world, you have got to say that it is no wonder that this is the case. Roger Federer, for instance, has turned 36 and to say that he is no longer on the top of his game is not, at all, insightful, or is it?
On the flip side, Croft’s case doesn’t appear to be right either. When you consider the current scenario of men’s tennis, Nadal tops the ATP rankings, in spite of not hitting a ball in more than three months. And which star has he overtaken? Well, it is the 36 year old veteran, Roger Federer. Bearing the scenario in mind, to say that the “Big Four” are no longer on the top of the world appears to be nothing short of a foolhardy claim, hoped to bring publicity, owing to how their domination of the ATP rankings continue!
Who doesn’t remember all of the hoo-ha in the tennis world, back in 2014, after Roger Federer lost consecutive matches? Federer, who was 32 back then, was closely scrutinized for his performance, as pundits called him a “has been” superstar. Afterwards, however, Federer did what Federer does bes;: go on a spree of world domination to shut all of the “self-proclaimed” pundits up. However, after Federer recently lost two matches in a row, after an unbelievable start to 2018, questions are being raised once again.
Federer’s recent loss to Thanasi Kokkinakis, an Australian who is ranked 175th in the world, has raised an eyebrow or two on where his illustrious career might be heading. On top of that, this was second defeat in a row for Federer, causing him to lose his position at the top of the world, which he had worked so hard to accomplish at the age of 36. However, the question arises; will Federer be able to come back from this hole that he finds himself in?
To say that he will be able to manage it, just as he did in 2014, would be nothing short of a fool’s dream, especially when you consider how 2014 was four years ago. Federer had much more strength, resilience and time to come back from any predicament he might have found himself in, as opposed to now when he is at the twilight of his career. Federer returns to the court next for the Wimbledon—after missing the whole of the clay court season, including the French Open. If he is unable to leave a mark on that competition, at least, and fail just like he did in Miami, the curtains might drop on his career sooner than his fans might expect!