Quantcast
Latest Stories

Roger, over and out? Make-or-break time for Federer



Roger Federer, from Switzerland, reaches for a forehand to Rafael Nadal, from Spain, during a quarterfinal at the Western & Southern Open tennis tournament, Friday, Aug. 16, 2013, in Mason, Ohio. AP

NEW YORK – Plagued by back trouble and the declining influence brought on by advancing years, Roger Federer heads for the US Open with his game and legacy, if not his famed confidence, in crisis.

The 17-time Grand Slam title winner is at a crossroads as he prepares for his 14th US Open.

A five-time champion at Flushing Meadows from 2004 to 2008, the 32-year-old Swiss finds himself at seven in the world – his lowest ranking since October 2002 – after a tortuous summer.

His second round loss to Ukraine’s world number 116 Sergiy Stakhovsky at Wimbledon was his worst Grand Slam defeat for a decade and ended a run of 36 successive quarter-final appearances at the majors.

Then followed the bizarre decision to play low-profile claycourt events in Hamburg and Gstaad which ended in shattering losses to unheralded Federico Delbonis and Daniel Brands, both outside the top 50.

There was even a brief flirtation with a larger racquet as Federer scrambled for a recovery.

The statistics are conspiring against the former world number one whose last US Open final appearance ended in defeat to Juan Martin Del Potro in 2009.

His great hero Pete Sampras won his fifth and final US Open in 2002 when he was 31 and promptly quit the sport, a punch-drunk second round exit at Wimbledon having already warned him of the dangers of over-staying his welcome.

Meanwhile, Federer’s great rivals – Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray – all seem comfortably to have the measure of him.

World number one Djokovic trails 16-13 in their career match-ups but the Serb, who was the 2011 champion in New York and runner-up in 2010 and 2012, has won seven of their last 10 meetings.

Nadal leads 21-10 and has also won seven of their last 10 clashes, including all three in 2013.

Murray, the defending US Open champion, leads Federer 11-9 and has split their last 10 clashes.

Federer, however, insists he is unconcerned about his predicament, shrugging off his lowly ranking and preferring to accentuate the positives gleaned from taking a set off Nadal in their Cincinnati quarter-final last week.

“It doesn’t change anything for the US Open. As long as you’re either in the top 4 or the top 8, I think at this point that’s what matters,” said Federer.

“Rankings are not what lead me. It’s about getting my game back on track, and that’s what I’m doing well. So that’s what’s exciting right now.”

The Swiss will discover how tricky his New York path will be when the draw is made later Thursday, but his humble seeding means he could face any of the top three as early as the quarter-finals.

He insists his back problem is not the restriction that it has been in recent weeks, even if, deep down, he remains to be totally convinced.

“I believe when I can walk and I can hit decent, you never know. Sometimes miracles happen, like last year at Wimbledon (when he beat Murray to win his most recent Grand Slam title). You get a bit lucky or you heal well, get the extra day off, and all that stuff.”


Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.


Tags: Athletics , Roger Federer , Sports , Tennis , US Open

  • davet2

    Like most great tennis players,,Roger has probably lost about 1% of his reflexes each year from his peak 5 years ago, which is the age of the top three players now,and though he is still majestic and superb to watch, the 5% loss is the difference between them,though he is still capable of another grand slam.



Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement

News

  • Ukraine FM: We are ready to fight Russia
  • Slain officer’s ‘diagram’ rocks PNP
  • 2 contractors fined P25,000 for delays in Edsa rehab
  • Luisita beneficiaries take over renters
  • 5 years of hard work pay off for top UP grad
  • Sports

  • Sharapova advances to Stuttgart quarterfinals
  • Galedo caps ride of redemption
  • Beermen, Express dispute second semis slot today
  • Lady Agilas upset Lady Bulldogs in four sets
  • NLEX roars to 7th D-League win
  • Lifestyle

  • A brand for life
  • Wear a rainbow on your wrist
  • Wearing Kate Moss
  • Sail into summer
  • Life lessons from the Ultimate Warrior
  • Entertainment

  • Kristoffer Martin: from thug to gay teen
  • Has Ai Ai fallen deeply with ‘sireno?’
  • California court won’t review Jackson doctor case
  • Cris Villonco on play adapted from different medium
  • OMB exec’s assurance: We work 24/7
  • Business

  • Gaming stocks gain, PSEi eases on profit-taking
  • Cebu Pacific flew 3.74M passengers as of March
  • Corporate bonds sweeteners
  • Professionals in the family business
  • Foreign funds flowed out in Q1, says BSP
  • Technology

  • Vatican announces hashtag for April 27 canonizations
  • Enrile in Masters of the Universe, Lord of the Rings?
  • Top Traits of Digital Marketers
  • No truth to viral no-visa ‘chronicles’
  • ‘Unlimited’ Internet promos not really limitless; lawmakers call for probe
  • Opinion

  • Editorial Cartoon, April 25, 2014
  • No deal, Janet
  • Like making Al Capone a witness vs his gang
  • MERS-CoV and mothers
  • A graduation story
  • Global Nation

  • Afghan hospital guard kills 3 American doctors
  • Career diplomat is new PH consul general in Los Angeles
  • US4GG: Aquino should ask Obama for TPS approval, drone technology
  • Complex health care system for California’s elderly and poor explained
  • Tiff with HK over Luneta hostage fiasco finally over
  • Marketplace