Topic: Can Federer reclaim the n°1 spot in 2012?

A lot of people said Federer was done after he lost the 2009 AO final to Nadal. He then went on to win his first ever RG and a record 15th GS title at Wimbledon after an epic final against Roddick.

He struggled in 2010, had some very tough losses in 2011 and went down to the n°3 spot.

At the end of 2011, he won 17 matches in row and three tournaments. After a SF showdown against Nadal at the AO, he's won 4 tournaments out of the 5 he played and took the n°2 spot to Rafa.

Until the US Open, here are the ranking points the top 4 players have to defend (ranking points they have right now)

1) Djokovic 6320 (11200)
2) Federer 2550 (9430)
3) Nadal 4635 (9105)
4) Murray 3420 (7500).

It is very unlikely that Djokovic will repeat his tremendous effort during the 2011 summer. Nadal has three GS finals to defend. I think that if Federer can win one of the three GS, he could be World n°1 again if doesn't have any early exits in the two other GS. He could even do a "Wozniacki" if he plays very well in the 1000 events.

But if he cannot grab that spot after Shanghaï, he's done. He will have 3000 points to defend 3 weeks in a row which I don't see him do it ever again. (last year it was in 4 weeks, they don't have that extra week to rest before the Finals this year..).

Do you think he can make it? Will his nerves hold on? Will he finally break Pete's record? And moreover, can he clinch the year-end ranking? (he's now at n°2 position, right behind Djokovic for 500 points.)

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Re: Can Federer reclaim the n°1 spot in 2012?

In short Adunar....I hope so, I hope so, I hope so!! big_smile

Will he though...hmmm the next few months will be crucial for him I think, he can make a good start by making at least the semis in Rome, since he lost to Gasquet last year in round three he will earn extra points on Djokovic there with a deep run...especially if Nole doesn't defend his title. wink

He has to make the semis or final at least in Paris too I reckon...a win would be great but a semi or final appearance would still be good.....then his BIG chance will be at Wimbledon, he lost to Tsonga in the quarters last year and if he can win the tournament and Nole doesn't make the final then we could see The Fed Express back at No.1......a lot of things could happen but if Roger stays fit and healthy and in form he has to be in with a GREAT chance surely.
An early loss in one of the BIG events will really hurt him though so he has to be his usual consistent self.....I definitely want to see him back in the top spot again...............GO ROGER!!! big_smile

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Re: Can Federer reclaim the n°1 spot in 2012?

In fact the rankings I showed you (which will be released tomorrow) already involve the loss of points in Rome since the calendar has been slightly changed. So Rome will be extra points (minus their worst 250 or 500 result which counts) for everybody...

So Roger has to do at least as well as Nadal in Rome to keep his 2nd place. In short: if Rafa wins, he takes back the n°2 spot. If he loses in the Final, Roger has to get at least to the semis.

I agree that he has to get at least to the SF at RG to get a real shot at Wimbledon. But the Wimbledon points will drop the monday of the 2nd week of Wimbledon so if he is less than 1640 points behind Djokovic and 840 points behind Nadal, he could be n°1 for that intermediary week! That would be a joke but 1 week is enough... I know it's sneaky but why not ;-)

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Re: Can Federer reclaim the n°1 spot in 2012?

Oh yeah that's right...points are dropping off a week before because of the Olympics disrupting the calendar this year huh....oh well it's simple for Fed anyway, he just needs to keep winning. wink
I am expecting Nadal to bounce back in Rome though. hmm

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Re: Can Federer reclaim the n°1 spot in 2012?

I think Roger answered my question pretty well smile

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Re: Can Federer reclaim the n°1 spot in 2012?

I don't think he can do it........

OH WAIT!!!  BOOYA!!!

-Arvis

Re: Can Federer reclaim the n°1 spot in 2012?

AT 75 YEARS YOUNG, MY FATHER JUST SENT THIS TO ME VIA TEXT MESSAGE. SINCE I COULDN'T FIND A WAY FOR THE WORLD TO READ, I THOUGHT I WOULD SHARE IT WITH YOU... BEST REGARDS AND LOVE TO THIS ONE GUYS. A TRUE MASTERPIECE. I'LL GIVE MY LIFE SAVINGS TO ONE WHO DOESN'T LIKE THIS!.............

Well, dear, another (sinking feeling!) tough GS loss for Federer. Too bad.

From what I can gather, he seemed a bit behind the power curve from the outset.

To be sure, he's only human. So we can say it's entirely understandable he might have been less than 100%. Not only was this late in the tournament, he'd just come off a tough 5-setter w/ JWT (Murray, by contrast, had not had such a grueling preliminary).

But as you & I have discussed multiple times over the past several years, Fed, despite glorious skills & grace on the court, has a grievous tendency to squander energy. This is problematic in itself. As time ticks away, the problem can only become more impactful.

The greater issue is this (a matter of straightforward human math): Let's say we commence a certain endeavor w/ a total energy package of 100 TEU (total energy units).

If we squander 5 EU (energy units), the percentage of wasted units (5 is what percent of 100) is 5%.

However, if, later on ((e.g., as the aging process inexorably marches forward) there are only 95 TEU available @ outset, what happens if we waste the same 5 EU?

Well, the same (basic human) math applies - I.e., 5 is what percent of 95, & the answer is 5.3 percent.

As time further moves forward, we may only have 90 TEU to bring to battle. So this time if we squander 5EU, we've wasted (5 divided by 90) 5.6 percent of our total energy.

And so it goes. The sequence is absolutely predictable.

And because of the absolute predictability, the assumption tends automatically to emerge that nothing whatsoever can be done about it.

Not so!

The key lies in minimizing waste.

I'm hopeful Fed will learn - 1st of all - that there is waste, &, 2nd, that something surely can be done about it.

His service game represents a highly significant area for waste reduction.

Everyone who's played tennis awhile knows that missing a 1st serve is wasteful. Not very many recognize, though, how wasteful it is.

Missing a 1st serve isn't a simple loss. Nor is it just lose-lose. It is lose-lose-lose-lose-lose. A prime offensive opportunity is lost; a serious chunk of energy is lost; a tactical advantage is lost; a momentum-gaining window is lost; & a discrete piece of the game is lost.

Well, yes, few recognize the extent of the loss. Still fewer pause to figure out what the problem is. Even fewer analyze the matter w/ sufficient care to build a good, evidence-based
strategy for improvement.

Unfortunately, just going out & 'hitting serves' isn't enough.

The important starting point is clarifying where & when glitches manifest themselves. Also important (make that vital) is taking a long look @ efficaciousness.

Of course, just having a high 1st serve percentage is next to meaningless. (If the 1st serve is a patty cake for an opponent's putaway, we're right back in the multiple-loss position. Aces are best. Short of that, though, the cornerstone issue lies in consistently gaining sufficient advantage w/ the 1st serve to win the point.)

Necessary areas to explore in the business of serve analysis include such things as,

- Day vs night;
- Hot weather vs cold;
- Windy vs not;
- Indoors vs outdoors;
- Grass vs clay vs whatever;
- After 8 hours sleep vs whatever;
- After 2 full days between matches
vs whatever;
- Into add court vs deuce court;
- Out wide vs down the T vs
whatever;
- Early in set/match vs later;
- At certain points vs others;
- Against lefties vs righties;
- Flat serve vs kicker vs whatever;
- Looking into sun/lights or no;
- Crowd noise or not;
- One particular venue vs another;
- and so forth.

Now, when looking @ anything in detail like this, a fairly typical response is that 'It's not worth the effort.' And if this is the attitude one chooses to have, well, then, that's the attitude that'll govern.

However, an equally valid (& far more productive) attitude is to approach the matter w/ a sense of worthwhile adventure - in anticipation of results that cannot be guaranteed, but which will almost certainly fall in the category of sustained, incremental improvement.

(The pithy ('take home') points of all this merely are,

1) Know thyself (the Ancient Greek
maxim is timeless);

2) Good practice together w/ good
scholarship are no more
necessary for preserving
excellence than brushing &
flossing are necessary for
preserving teeth.

3) Yes, the task is daunting. But
diligence in addressing any part
of it cannot but yield a measure
of benefit (an approach which, in
it's essence, goes to the very
heart of the definition of
professionalism).)

It seems to me that Federer is near a career & life crossroad. As I see it (based on irrefutable mathematical principles), he'll either steadfastly pursue ways to avoid squandering energy (thereby extending his magnificent career well into the years ahead), or, in a mental state of increasing perplexity, spiral down & out.

I might add, too, that Fed would stand to greatly benefit from a period of counseling & instruction from the great (&, @ age 79, still active) Ken Rosewall. Not a towering or muscular specimen (5'7" tall, & slender of build), he learned to maximize timing, change of pace, & placement to lift himself to the ranking of world #1, & into the elite handful of players recognized the world over as among the best in history.

(As but one isolated example, Federer's employment of the 'drive' ('swinging') volley represents (as you & I have discussed) a wildly wasteful expenditure of energy. A much more conservative stroke would accomplish the same, w/greater reliability. (He may enjoy using that 'drive' volley, &, yes, it's colorful to some extent to behold (when successful). But it's also an energy-squandering overkill, & terrible to behold when (as regularly happens) fluffed.)

Summary

In my humble opinion, we're all privileged to see this great champion play. He is most definitely one of the greatest players I've ever had the pleasure of seeing, & arguably the finest player in the history of tennis. Moreover, he's a gentleman & sportsman of the highest order (courteous & respectful toward all), &, all & all, one of the finest ambassadors of international goodwill I've ever witnessed).

The only concern (well, I should say, my only concern) is that as a mortal human being, energy conservation necessarily becomes, for him as a world- class competitor, a matter of ever increasing relevance. He either learns & adapts ways to avoid squandering energy, or (quite passively, & surely unhappily) becomes the unwitting steward of his own (unduly premature) decline.

When you next communicate w/ Roger, won't you please review these various matters w/ him.

Hope all's well!