The year is over. And from my perspective - and the perspective of all Federfans everywhere - it has ended on the best possible note.
I'm going to talk about the significance of the fact that we had Federer and Nadal in the final final of the year another day, but for today, let's just focus on the match. Three sets. It would have been disappointing if it had been anything less (although who would have thought so in the midst of the frazzle fits!) The most fitting way to cap off tennis for 2010.
We haven't seen Federer play as well as he has this tournament for a long, long time. Certainly not this year, I think. He had an excellent game plan and he executed it wonderfully. And the most telling stat, I think, is this - 100% of break points converted. I - among many, many others - have bemoaned his pitiful conversion rate all year. And now, on a huge stage, against the biggest of opponents, we have this, this proof that yes, Roger Federer's head really is in the game.
Federer's form was probably the better coming into the match - he's had a crazy time of it in the latter half of the year - but picking Nadal was so easy here. He's had a fantastic year. He didn't lose a match in the tournament. He gritted it out against Murray. He has a mind of steel. He's been a huge problem for Federer before. He's the #1 player, and there is a reason for that. He is Rafa Nadal, and he is the ultimate test.
Picking him was so easy. But one person didn't. And that person is Roger Federer. Federer backed himself, backed his gameplan, backed his game, and he came up trumps.
This year has been a year of Rafa. There is no doubting that. And congratulations to him. I love the guy, and I'm looking forward to seeing him win a lot more in the future. But this win, this victory, this match... this is a very, very stern reminder. I'm Roger Federer. I'm here. I'm the greatest player that has ever lived. I'm always a threat. And there is no universe in which you should ever, ever count me out.
4 weeks ago