For the first time, in about ages, Federer slumped out of the top five in 2013. Father time looked like getting the better of the crafty Swiss legend and critics started to write him off.
Federer switched to a larger racquet later that year, with a larger sweet spot. His back started to create troubles, a man who looked immune to injuries and ageing, was looking slower as he helplessly saw players smashing winners past him.
The world of tennis, no matter how ardently they loved this guy, almost started accepting the fact that Roger would soon fade away, just like legends of the past. But Federer is the chosen one, and even in the list of legends, his name shines the brightest.
Federer gave the world a spectacle in 2014, with a new coach, Stefan Edberg. It was treat to the eyes as he once again started dominating players, Djokovic being the only exception and soon the Swiss Maestro regained his place at the top, came mighty close to displace Novak from the world number one spot.
Roger went back to the old school serve and volley, something that his coach Edberg was a master at and it paid off. He started keeping the rallies a lot shorter and the new racquet too helped in reducing the miss-hits.
At 34, Federer has still demolished majority of his opponents, far from his prime, it’s next to impossible to play the way he has been doing for the last year and a half.
The Swiss has been intelligent when it comes to managing his schedule, his latest decision to skip Montreal was a good one and if Cincinnati is a preview to next week’s US Open, a silverware looks set for him- going all the way or ending up runner up can be a tricky thing to pick!
Something that has helped the man from Basel is his appetite to carry on. His love for the game is unmatched, and the Swiss has constantly stated the fact that his fans are a huge factor that keep him going.
His latest triumph at Cincinnati, without losing a single service game- even the best returners couldn’t earn a single break point against Roger- proves that Federer is still very much in the hunt for that elusive 18th.
And if there’s a slam apart from Wimbledon, where the Swiss can achieve this unprecedented feat, it’s USO. The fast paced courts of NYC- well, atleast faster than Melbourne and Paris- suit Federer’s game the most.
Federer owns Murray at the Slams, Nadal looks a weak force, the only guy Roger can lose to looking at the recent form, is Djokovic.
But just like any other event, we know who’s going to be the ‘crowd favorite’, and what better than seeing the people’s champion kissing the winner’s trophy on September 14.
Watches tennis, cricket and football. Mostly tennis.