It isn't about not feeling it or never doing well at IW or Miami or not his time of year. It's about being up 2 sets at AO this year or against Murray at Wimbly or having Almagro on the ropes and letting victory slip away or winning more points but loosing the match. It's about being able to serve an ace on set/match point instead of a double fault; it's about figuring out how to once again be the free and confident Gasquet that could beat Federer in Monte Carlo or Roddick at Wimbly.
He can fix his forehand and court positioning, get fitter than Federer and have the coach of the decade but without the mentality to win the last point he will not achieve the results I believe he really wants.
I'm still betting that he can find the answer and if not I'll still love watching him "almost win" while I pull my hair out and punch the TV.
Yup me too. What is worrying me with the "almost win" thing is that it seems to be getting worse not better for him. Also he is obviously practising a lot better than he is playing in matches right now.
I can be patient. I think the Argie coach idea is a great one for the physical stuff, maybe even improving his mental strength. As long as Markus bears in mind that Richard's game is not that of the typical player and doesn't try to get him to change what he's good at as well. I hate it when Richard pushes it just isn't him at all. So I think 3 months is a reasonable figure for the physical work to pay off. So by the grass season if he's not doing ok, I'm hunting down Markus and having words
So on to Sunrise. Didn't do Soderling any harm last year.
As for Richard's personality. I've never met him but I think that lack of mental strength on a tennis court is different to lack of substance or character. He showed great strength of character imo off court last year during the entire doping saga. He is obviously a reserved person, thats no secret, he doesn't seem the most outgoing but I don't think that has anything to do with what is going on for him on court. I think there is some sort of issue there, the whole being unable to win, when in winning position thing. Plenty of sports people (and other professionals) do have issues like this though and there are tons of good sports psychologists around. I suppose maybe he is already seeing one but if he isn't please could he get one it would benefit him so much. Psychological issues are no different than a recurrent injury really. The choking is Richard's equivalent of Rafa's knees.
Will be interesting to see if he shows up in Miami. I think he will and I think he might win a couple of rounds.