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Wimbledon 2021

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alfie
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Post by sirfredperry Fri Jun 25, 2021 5:35 pm

First topic message reminder :

The draw is out for Wimbledon, with defending champ Djoko opening against GB's Jack Draper.

Djoko is, of course, clear favourite and won't have to play Rafa or Thiem who have had to drop out along with, among others, Raonic and Stan the Man.

Federer opens against Mannarino and could play Gasquet in round two and Cameron Norrie in the third round. More importantly, Roger is in the bottom half of the draw and away from Djoko.

Andy Murray, who could have been drawn against any of the top seeds, has got 24th seed Basilashvili which won't be easy but could have been even tougher.

Dan Evans, seeded 22nd, could be up against it. He plays grass-court specialist Feliciano Lopez in the opening round. An intriguing round one match is Kyrgios v Humbert who won in Halle.

No one can be sure how Federer will play. He does not have too difficult a start and may be able to run into some form for the later, harder matches. Berrettini, seeded 7, could be a handful if his Queen's form carries on. Difficult to look beyond Djoko, although Novak could face Anderson in round two.

As mentioned in the previous topic 2019 champ Halep is not fit enough to start. Practically impossible to predict a woman's winner. Gauff could go deep. Kvitova and Kerber, two previous SW19 champs, seem to have run into some grass-court form as does 2017 French champion Ostapenko, who has reached a Wimbledon semi before.

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Post by sirfredperry Mon Jul 12, 2021 12:27 pm

It's a pity that Novak hasn't taken a leaf out of Sampras' book.

Pete was respected rather than loved. He was so good that he made it look easy. Big serve, lovely volleying, solid rather than spectacular.

But Pete just gone on with it. There was no attempt to engage the crowd. He was totally professional. He did his job.

You can't become charismatic. You either have it, or you don't. Fed has it, Rafa has it. Novak doesn't.

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Post by dummy_half Mon Jul 12, 2021 12:40 pm

sirfredperry wrote:It's a pity that Novak hasn't taken a leaf out of Sampras' book.

Pete was respected rather than loved. He was so good that he made it look easy. Big serve, lovely volleying, solid rather than spectacular.

But Pete just gone on with it. There was no attempt to engage the crowd. He was totally professional. He did his job.

You can't become charismatic. You either have it, or you don't. Fed  has it, Rafa has it. Novak doesn't.
Agassi had it, Sampras not, yet Pete was definitely the better player. Also, look back now, and you can see how brilliant Sampras was - moved like a cat around the court; at the time perhaps was a bit under-appreciated.

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Post by Soul Requiem Mon Jul 12, 2021 12:53 pm

I don't think Sampras can be discounted in the greatness stakes, I for one do not think the gap between him and Fedalvic is that big. Yes he didn't win the French but I don't think it's a deal breaker personally.

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Post by lags72 Mon Jul 12, 2021 12:54 pm

I think you summarise it pretty well sfp.

And specifically on your point about charisma : I guess this, in many ways, is the ‘intangible’ element I touched on in my previous post. And (rightly or wrongly) no amount of effort by Novak to engage with the crowd can, in itself, bring charisma. As good an example as any of trying too hard …….. chin

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Post by dummy_half Mon Jul 12, 2021 1:06 pm

Soul Requiem wrote:I don't think Sampras can be discounted in the greatness stakes, I for one do not think the gap between him and Fedalvic is that big. Yes he didn't win the French but I don't think it's a deal breaker personally.

Sampras falls short on longevity and his absence of a big win on clay (not just RG). Admittedly the game was different, with the disparity between the surfaces being much greater and the slowness of the clay taking much away from Sampras's game (although noting that Edberg reached an RG final and Henman a SF playing serve-volley). Best grass court player ever? Well in the debate (with Borg, Fed and now arguably Djokovic). Best hard court player? Probably just a bit short - top 5 or so, but with clear water ahead to Djokovic and Federer; GOTE rather than GOAT.

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Post by laverfan Mon Jul 12, 2021 4:25 pm

sirfredperry wrote:Chuck all these things into the mix and they add up to a fairly mediocre Championships.

Reminds me a bit of the 1973 W.


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Post by Henman Bill Mon Jul 12, 2021 6:53 pm

Sampras seems quite well behind Rosewall, Gonzales, probably Laver, perhaps bill Tilden, and clearly behind Djokovic, Nadal and Federer.

Apart from Wimbledon, he regularly lost to average players in slams even at the peak of his career and not just at the French Open. Nadal Federer and Djokovic very rarely do especially not in the middle portion of their careers.

Sampras did not win 3 grand slams in a calendar year even once. Roger and Novak have done that 3 times.

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Post by Atila Mon Jul 12, 2021 7:50 pm

Henman Bill wrote:Sampras seems quite well behind Rosewall, Gonzales, probably Laver, perhaps bill Tilden, and clearly behind Djokovic, Nadal and Federer.

Apart from Wimbledon, he regularly lost to average players in slams even at the peak of his career and not just at the French Open. Nadal Federer and Djokovic very rarely do especially not in the middle portion of their careers.

Sampras did not win 3 grand slams in a calendar year even once. Roger and Novak have done that 3 times.
He never won 3 GS in a calendar year but he did once hold 3 GS titles at the same time, 1993 US, 1994 AO and the 1994 Wimbledon.

Going back to what I said earlier about Novak having no personality or charisma, Sampras didn't have much either, but for some reason I used to root for him. At one point I thought he was that good that he would somehow find a way to win the FO. Sadly for him, it never happened.

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Post by laverfan Mon Jul 12, 2021 7:52 pm

Henman Bill wrote:Sampras did not win 3 grand slams in a calendar year even once. Roger and Novak have done that 3 times.

Nadal did it once, in 2010.

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Post by No name Bertie Mon Jul 12, 2021 9:43 pm

How good was Rafael Nadal Australian Open 2009?  Then something happened French Open 2009 (Soderling but according to Nadal he had a physical problem), he was absent for Wimbledon 2009 - then he was back to winning ways.  He had a glorious 2010 and then had a revamped Djokovic for 2011 to contend with.  However something happened during Wimbledon 2012 - he got beaten by an on fire Rossel - but according to Nadal he had a physical problem and he was absent for USO 2012 and Australian Open 2012.  He returned but there was something clearly different with this Nadal as his Wimbledon / grass performances were terrible for many years.  Apparently he had difficulty bending down low needed for grass court play - indicative of knee strength issues.

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Post by sirfredperry Tue Jul 13, 2021 9:25 am

laverfan wrote:
sirfredperry wrote:Chuck all these things into the mix and they add up to a fairly mediocre Championships.

Reminds me a bit of the 1973 W.


Of course 1973 was the boycott year when most of the men didn't turn up. But the weather was good and the crowds were actually up!

I went on women's semi day, queueing up and standing on Centre Court. There were some terrific matches that year. All the top women were there - Evert, Court, King, Goolagong, Wade.

Arguably until Borg emerged in the mid-70s the women's matches were more of an attraction at this time. It was the Smith-Newcombe era although you had Nastase for touch play, Taylor for GB interest and Rosewall for nostalgia.

On the Sampras debate, I'd rate him right up there as a top grass-court player and around top five or six as the GOAT.

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Post by laverfan Tue Jul 13, 2021 1:43 pm

Tail end of Taylor vs Borg.


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Post by sirfredperry Tue Jul 13, 2021 5:37 pm

L'fan. I well remember the Borg-Taylor match in 73. Teenage girls went mad about the young Bjorn, just 17, who had been catapulted up to sixth seed due to the boycott.

Normally Briton Taylor would have got most of the support for a Centre Court match. But there were plenty there cheering Borg on.

Taylor had a great chance to get to the final. He had Jan Kodes in the semi and hung on gamely during a long final set only to succumb.

I think I'm right in saying that no British man reached a Wimbledon semi after that until Tim Henman in 1998.

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Post by sirfredperry Tue Jul 13, 2021 6:04 pm

Just heard that Federer WON'T be playing in the Olympics. Doubt if this is going to be the last of the withdrawals.

Having finally got spectators back at tournaments, the players are hardly going to want to travel a long way to perform in empty stadiums.


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Post by Atila Tue Jul 13, 2021 6:06 pm

I wonder if Fed will be back for the hard court season?

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Post by slashermcguirk Tue Jul 13, 2021 6:33 pm

I am sorry but Djokovic has far more personality on court than Sampras. I was a big Sampras fan but he was totally robotic, almost like a cyborg out there. I saw him in action at Wimbledon and he was just in his own world, no real engagement with fans but a fantastic player.

Djokovic while not everyones cup of tea has a lot of personality and I think he really divides crowds because of that personality. He takes so much nonsense from the crowds, particularly the clowns attending Wimbledon but that is more because they adore Federer and Novak started beating him regularly and clearly they didnt like that.

Djokovic gets a lot of crowd support at the Australian Open and he also is well liked at the French open. Just watch the prize ceremony when the crowd gave a 3 minute standing ovation after losing to Wawrinka and I think they did something similar when he lost to Nadal in the final one year. I have never seen a player get a standing ovation for that long, i even remember Wawrinaka looking on and being taken aback by the response he got.

The reality is while he will always divide the public, he is clearly very popular with the other ATP players who always seem to speak really highly of him. The only exception is Kyrgios but he is a tool so I dont think anyone cares what he thinks.

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Post by sirfredperry Tue Jul 13, 2021 6:39 pm

I notice that Fed has talked about a knee "setback" in relation to his withdrawal from the Olympics.

This is possibly a "diplomatic" injury. He doesn't want to actually say that he really doesn't want to attend.

SMcQ - Of course, the cynics might say that the big hand(s) Djoko got in Paris were because he....lost.


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Post by Atila Tue Jul 13, 2021 7:31 pm

sirfredperry wrote:I notice that Fed has talked about a knee "setback" in relation to his withdrawal from the Olympics.

This is possibly a "diplomatic" injury. He doesn't want to actually say that he really doesn't want to attend.

SMcQ - Of course, the cynics might say that the big hand(s) Djoko got in Paris were because he....lost.

I would have thought that a fully fit Federer would have wanted to attend. The Olympic Gold is the only major tennis title that he hasn't won.

I believe he is being genuine with his injury.

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Post by No name Bertie Tue Jul 13, 2021 7:34 pm

What player applauds / acknowledges when their opponent makes a good winning shot.  What player spoofs the serving actions and mannerisms of other players during charity matches and makes the crowd laugh.

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Post by No name Bertie Tue Jul 13, 2021 8:30 pm

I had heard a few years back some say that Federer was extending his career in order to compete at the 2020 Olympics.

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Post by Born Slippy Tue Jul 13, 2021 8:41 pm

Gutted for Federer that he is having to miss the Olympics. Doesn’t leave much left for him and I wonder if Basel might be his last tournament. Hope he can have a good run there at least.

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Post by slashermcguirk Tue Jul 13, 2021 8:43 pm

I couldn’t care less who wins Olympic gold. For me tennis just should not be in the olympics, nor should golf. It never seemed right to me for whatever reason.

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Post by sirfredperry Tue Jul 13, 2021 9:12 pm

We remember Andy winning the Gold Medal in 2012 but I just wonder, even given British interest, so many remember he did it again in 2016.

I bet Djoko would rather win the USO to complete the Calendar Slam than win the Olympics.

A Basel exit for Fed at the end of the season certainly seems a possibility.

On the other hand Karlovic, now 42, won a match today, so anything's possible.




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Post by slashermcguirk Tue Jul 13, 2021 9:36 pm

100% any player would take a grand slam over olympics. There is no comparison. I think a masters series is arguably tougher to win than an Olympic gold, world tour finals would certainly be harder to win

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Post by Henman Bill Tue Jul 13, 2021 9:41 pm

I suspect the knee injury is genuine, something didn´t feel right against Hurcasz, I said so at the time, this unusual defeatist body language, as if he knew at the time he wouldn´t be able to turn it around (end of second set and start of third).

I predict Federer will not retire this year (unless absolutely forced to do so by injury), and will play 2-3 slams in 2022.

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Post by laverfan Tue Jul 13, 2021 10:04 pm

Henman Bill wrote:I predict Federer will not retire this year (unless absolutely forced to do so by injury), and will play 2-3 slams in 2022.

If Federer can, he would prefer to win a Slam and then walk away, a la Sampras.

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Post by Calder106 Tue Jul 13, 2021 10:04 pm

While I agree that tennis should not be in the olympics, the top players take representing their country very seriously. At the 2016 olympics I remember Djokovic being in tears after losing in the first round to Del Potro. Then Murray and Del Po hanging over the net in exhaustion at the end of the final.

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Post by sirfredperry Wed Jul 14, 2021 9:47 am

Calder - You're absolutely right about the Olympics. If you decide to turn up you give it your all. Bit like Davis Cup. If you play, you play hard.

But I'm sure the likes of Monica Puig (current Gold Medal winner) and Nicolas Massu (2004 Gold Medallist) would rather have won a Grand Slam.

As for the Federer retirement date, I agree that if he's fit he will want to carry on. Sport can be pretty unsentimental, though.

For example, Rosewall's last Wimbledon title match saw him annihilated by a rampant young Jimmy Connors while Sampras final match at SW19 ended in defeat by a rank outsider on an outside court. For all we know Fed's last Wimbledon set will be a bagel.

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Post by dummy_half Wed Jul 14, 2021 10:18 am

sirfredperry wrote:Calder - You're absolutely right about the Olympics. If you decide to turn up you give it your all. Bit like Davis Cup. If you play, you play hard.

But I'm sure the likes of Monica Puig (current Gold Medal winner) and Nicolas Massu (2004 Gold Medallist) would rather have won a Grand Slam.

As for the Federer retirement date, I agree that if he's fit he will want to carry on. Sport can be pretty unsentimental, though.

For example, Rosewall's last Wimbledon title match saw him annihilated by a rampant young Jimmy Connors while Sampras final match at SW19 ended in defeat by a rank outsider on an outside court. For all we know Fed's last Wimbledon set will be a bagel.

I think it's apparent that Federer just likes playing the game, so as long as he's fit enough he'll keep going. The question really is whether he is fit enough at almost 40 and with the injuries / rehab for it to be worth continuing on the pro circuit. Could see him getting involved in some exhibition stuff after retirement, just for the fun of it.

Agree that an Olympic gold in tennis is maybe on a par with one of the lesser Masters Series events for prestige - Murray's 2012 gold was probably the high point since the reintroduction because of the context (v Fed at Wimbledon) and that it opened the door for Andy's subsequent slam wins.

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Post by Born Slippy Wed Jul 14, 2021 10:34 am

Olympics is way higher than a Masters in terms of prestige/player importance. It’s probably on a par with the WTF and arguably more so as the WTF has massive ranking points and prize money to compel players to attend (previously players used to regularly skip). It’s obviously behind a grand slam but it’s probably the next most prestigious event to win.

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Post by sirfredperry Thu Jul 15, 2021 9:22 am

Dan Evans the latest to miss Olympics - he's tested Covid positive. Not going to be much of a field at this rate.

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Post by No name Bertie Thu Jul 15, 2021 12:15 pm

What is the point of the Olympics if athletes can't mix with other athletes and compete in front of crowds. The Olympics is supposed to be bringing people from different cultures and different disciplines together for a festival of (amateur) sport. Now it is becoming much like other sports and sporting events - institutionalized, bureaucratized, a money making exercise for network television, broadcasters, streaming services, that provides large audiences for advertisers - to keep the globalized consumerist economy going.

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Post by Atila Thu Jul 15, 2021 4:25 pm

Angelique Kerber has now pulled out of the Olympics. Claims that her body "needs rest".

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Post by dummy_half Thu Jul 15, 2021 5:38 pm

No name Bertie wrote:What is the point of the Olympics if athletes can't mix with other athletes and compete in front of crowds.  The Olympics is supposed to be bringing people from different cultures and different disciplines together for a festival of (amateur) sport.  Now it is becoming much like other sports and sporting events - institutionalized, bureaucratized, a money making exercise for network television, broadcasters, streaming services, that provides large audiences for advertisers - to keep the globalized consumerist economy going.

Very little in the Olympics remains amateur - just boxing that I can think of off the top of my head. Otherwise, I do agree rather with the first part of your comment - one of the big things with the Olympics is bringing together people of different nations, both the competitors and the fans. My parents were in Athens for the 2004 Olympics and my Mum (not the big sports fan of the two) loved the atmosphere of mixing with people from all over the world - their highlight was being in the stadium for a night of track and field including the men's 10000m, so obviously a lot of support from north Africa.

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