Originally Posted by paige
I think I go too far the other way, AF.
Andre's been at it sooooo long and he's playing guys soooo much younger than him. I'm just always happy to see him. I just know it's not gonna be incredibly much longer, and it's a wincer to see him come up against a Federer, but I still love his game.
He's def. not a guy I yell at when I'm watching matches. (And there are a few of those...
Hey, Andre was the one who gave Fed trouble in 2004, easily winning their exhibition match and then losing a couple of really tight ones at Masters and USO. But so far in 2005
, Andre was clearly inferior in both matches, playing FAR from his best tennis.
I mean, when Roger plays the way he did in the 1st set against Hewitt in 2004 USO, you just tip your hat. But you can't tell me that he was all that great at AO, let alone the following tournaments where he had difficult time dealing with Davydenko, Ancic, Ferrero, Minar, etc where he looked downright "ordinary". All Andre had to do yesterday was come out firing early on, convert the BP and make Roger come back from another 0-1 set deficit. Predictably, that didn't happen.
I guess, it's the many losses to non-Sampras/Federer opponents in the last 15 years that irked me more than these Federer matches since Roger has obviously been on another planet since 2003 Wimbledon. If Andre had 11-12 slams like he would have if he had dedicated himself to tennis fully in the first 2/3rds of his career, I would have easier time accepting less-than-good performances at this stage of his career.
Where do we go from now? Get healthy, for one, which should help all-court movement. Then develop a much more accurate 1st serve, which allow Andre to stay in control of many more points. Finally, start showing some of that baseline power and blistering serve returns that everyone assumes Andre still has in him. Play in 2005 and 2006 and see where you are after that - maybe retire at 2007 Aussie Open or something.