Sunday, January 31, 2010

Australia 2010: Man up! or Post-Script

Come on. Does anyone else think the Roger Federer/Andy Murray scenario after the final today was a script? Last year, Fed's crying like a little girl after losing to Rafa Nadal. Now this year, Murray's fighting tears after Federer beats him?
It's full circle for Federer. After a rough start to last year, he came back to make history, snagging the next two slams. But then he lost a tough one to Juan Martin del Potro at the U.S. Open. Back at the stage of probably the most heartbreaking loss of his career, he comes up roses. I mean, really, when you making jokes about your opponent's nation not winning a slam for thousands of years, you've got to be very confident. You certainly wouldn't hear him making those jokes about Nadal. Except for the first round, Federer looked head-and-shoulders above all his opponents, and Murray was no exception.
But, moving on to Murray -- can we all agree that the Murray who showed up to the final was not the one who advanced to the final? Talk about tight. Especially in the third set. When Murray let that 5-2 lead slip away, he showed he wasn't quite ready for prime time yet. It's clear he's been working on his game but there are some things you can't prepare for. Like the massive pressure of trying to win a Grand Slam against the best player in the world. I still think Murray's going to win a Slam this year. I just don't put him in the same category as a Tim Henman, who had trouble with nerves and had limitations on his game. Murray's becoming a stronger player every year and whenever he deals with being something of a head case, he'll start racking them up and maybe one day against Federer.
But these men have got to do something about this crying at the Australian. Gosh, I haven't seen this much crying since Martina Navratilova's playing days.
You don't see Justine Henin crying. I cannot believe she can just show up in Australia with one tournament under her belt and make the final. You can't fault her dedication and fighting spirit. But why would she cry? She's still as lethal as ever, and quite likely to win some major this year. Question: If she wins Wimbledon, which is her goal, will she "retire" again?
And I guess Serena Williams' crying days are over as well. I have never seen anyone else with such an iron will to win. Unlike Federer, Serena had definite moments of, um, sloppiness? Dear Lord, how does someone get into a set and 4-0 break against Victoria Azarenka, who is no slouch, to suddenly find a second gear? Let's not forget that she is not the most technically sound player. And again, against Henin, she looked flat-footed and slow. I've just never seen someone's will transcend what is actually happening on the court and hot temper and all, you have to admire that. I guess that's a lesson for Murray. Winning isn't just the x's and o's sometimes. To win, one has to believe one can win. Doesn't one?

7 comments:

sabizak said...

what an absolutely effinig stupid SEXIST post!

Naf said...

Hey, thanks! So ... not familiar with the blog?

yogahz said...

hee!

Naf said...

I know, yogahz! With a name like Tennis With Attitude, you would think people would know what they're getting into by clicking on my blog ... :)

van said...

Naf! What's up? I'm just now reading this post—and the comments. Pretty funny! I'm sure there's a "Tennis Without Attitude" blog out there somewhere, right? : )

I'm with you on Murray: I think he'll win a Slam, if not this year, then the next. Not everyone wins their first couple of Slam finals, which he has to realize. He's talented enough to overcome that British pressure.

Naf said...

Well, Van, if there isn't a "Tennis Without Attitude," maybe I'll change my blog name on April Fool's Day and be really nice about everything. 'Bout to mosey on over to your blog. I haven't had much time to visit my faves, let alone blog myself. But anyway, I'm glad I'm not the only one who believes in young Andy. I really think he's got what it takes, and the mental toughness is the only piece missing. He completely melted down in that third set in the Aussie final. Completely.

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