Roger Federer: Hitting his Strides

Roger Federer on Ashe Stadium
Cameron Diaz and Alex ROD were in Ashe last evening, to catch a glimpse of Federer.

Melzer threw the kitchen sink at Federer, and then some. On Sunday evening, as Dementieva absolutely unloaded on a forehand cross court, Stosur stood back on her feet and half volleyed a clean forehand down the line winner reflexively (almost like a cover drive). Melzer hit a very similar shot last evening, and he did well by taking time out of Federer's hands.

However, he realistically did not have anything in his game that can hurt Federer, if you check the box and compare both their games I am struggling to think which category is the one in which Melzer would be one up.

To Federer's credit he was on auto-pilot for a good part of the first set, and when needed raised his game at crucial stages of the match. Seond set was key, and Federer did have two net chords go his way in the second set breaker.

From an isolated standpoint, guaging Rodge's game:

Serve - check. Movement - check. Backhand (aggression and timing) - check. The forehand still goes awry at times, but those were minor lapses.

However I am most interested in Federer's net-play. He did not nearly come in as much as he did in previous matches. May be its a sign of his respect to Melzer's ground game, may be he felt more comfortable going back to his bread and butter game, may be a bit of both.

This is where stats can be a bit misleading, Federer was at the net 25 odd times, but he only realistically served and volleyed less than five times. 

But if Paul was tryin to get him to come to the net a bit more, it wasnt seen last night. That was surprising. Like I said, it could very well be because Federer did not feel like he needed to come in to win this match. Something to think about, because if his objective was to practice on that front by coming in against less dangerous players - then it did not happen last night. He certainly is not going to come in more against Soderling or Nole in the immediate future.

Federer is a pleasure to watch in full flight - you can sit back and watch the game to see how it should be, and can be played - in its consummate E-L-E-G-A-N-C-E. His serve is vintage clutch, and time and again he rode on it to get out of precarious situations.The difference was just a band - it was  just that Federer was a shade better. Federer had a winners to unforced errors differential of +9. to Melzer's -7.

Given the way how his next opponent has been timing the ball, and how clean his crystal ball striking has been so far - the quarters is assured to be a barn burner. Will Federer's still limited net play be a factor ? ... Thats a question for the jury in two days time.

But Federer, is hitting his strides quite elegantly, Le'Sod looms next ...

--- Keep Rockin, Long John Silver


  1. Interesting points, particularly about net play. I don't think Federer's net play will be a factor against Soderling, because he'll try to be Sod with defense and his slice backhand, combined with good serving. If he's going to use the net to win, it'll be against someone he can push around from the backcourt.

  2. yeah, i think thats very true, the slicer makes lesod get down and low on his BH

    i guessed it like i said, if rodge goes 2-0 sets up, this is a straight setter

    i did not see it, and i will in the eve - am guessing rodge was too air-tight

    Nole abs. dismantled le-monf robsie ----- warmin up lovely for second satuday

    dare i stack a few chips on Nole ? or wil it be the same old tale again

  3. this is cool, no potd, no stupid arguments, just pure tennis

  4. Soderling actually had quite a bit of success pushing Federer around the court with his groundies, but had some bizarre lapses. And Federer's serve was just outstanding.

  5. Well against LeSod today, it was all about the serve right!

  6. yeah - it was odd because le'sod normally serves well at least 1/3 sets - and really, thats the cornerstone of his success

    because he must hold to exert pressure .... but rodge was clutch clutch clutch on hi serves

    thts rodge - he rocks up to play in the 2nd week .... cant wait for my serbian mate to take the fed on ...