Pat Cash thinks that Federer must change his style of play [Archive] - MensTennisForums.com

Pat Cash thinks that Federer must change his style of play

groundstroke
06-29-2008, 04:50 PM
From The Times Online...
WHAT IS the mark of a true sporting legend? Is it somebody who climbs supremely to the top and then appreciates they are better than the rest and feels no need to try and reach new levels of brilliance? Or rather a person who yearns to always improve, take risks and become an even more supreme force in a search for true perfection?

I donít know what it is like to be as brilliant and accomplished as Roger Federer. Like the rest of the tennis world I am in awe of his skill and respect his accomplishments. So in many ways I feel uncomfortable in coming out with the following statement - I believe the world No 1 has hit a brick wall with his game and to escape from what could become stagnating complacency he must show the guts to take some gambles.

Just imagine the excitement that would be generated by Federer suddenly going back on the attack with some marauding play rather than staying largely anchored to the baseline, relying on the percentages and only making the occasional foray into the net. Yet thatís what he must do if he wants to assert some dominance over Rafael Nadal and inflict the sort of emphatic defeat in what everybody expects to be next weekís menís singles final that would exact revenge for the thrashing three weeks ago at Roland Garros.

I think the most boring way of leading a life, sporting or otherwise, is taking the safe option. Isnít that the way of lacklustre men? Iíd like to think Roger isnít dull, but right now he seems to accept that he can win the majority of his matches on cruise control and that just becomes downright predictable.

At this Wimbledon he hasnít been pushed and looking at the list of his opponents in Halle it seemed to be the same story. He has now won 62 grass court matches in succession but there is a danger in becoming obsessed by statistics and records; you become almost monotonous. I donít want somebody so exquisitely talented as Federer to fall into that trap.

Since collecting his fifth successive Wimbledon title a year ago Federer has spent a lot of time in the company of Pete Sampras. You would like to think he chose those weeks they spent playing exhibitions in Asia and New York to pick up a few tips from the great man. Sampras was always a believer in playing the aggressive game and going for broke if the opportunity presented itself.

This year we have seen far more unforced errors creeping into the Federer game and there have been defeats and performances that previously would have been hard to comprehend - the loss to Mardy Fish in Indian Wells or the Roman exit on clay against Radek Stepanek. Wimbledon and grass is different but watching Federerís third-round match against Marc Gicquel there was no real adventure, no taking risks, no looking to experiment with a more attacking game.

I remember Ivan Lendlís desperate attempts to try and win Wimbledon by becoming a serve-and-volley player for a fortnight a year. For the rest of the year he packed away the tactic along with his grass court shoes and consequently never felt natural in attacking the net. Had he tried it now and again on the quicker surfaces indoors or on the cement in the United States it might have been different, but he was stuck in his ways.

Perish the thought that Federer is falling into the same trap. What would have been wrong in him trying a little all-out attack against Gicquel, who was honestly never a threat? His match against Dominik Hrbaty in the first round was another chance to show a little panache but it never truly came.

As an Aussie Iíd love to think Lleyton Hewitt could bring something to the court in the next round that would force Federer to crank up another couple of gears, but I canít see that happening. Iím expecting Federer to adopt his normal tactics again, but someday soon I hope he will free himself from the mental shackles that seem to be dictating his approach. Itís a matter of whether he wants to take on the challenge of constantly improving his game the way Nadal has. Martina Navratilova was another great champion who refused to rest on her laurels and always sought to achieve new levels in her game, but I donít see that with Federer.

Nadal knows what to expect from Federer on grass and Iím not sure whether it worries him too much. However, it would be so different if the champion came out and took the risks Iíd love to see by serving and volleying with the wonderful style I know he possesses. Iíd hazard a pretty educated guess that such a sight across the net is the only thing that just might unsettle the young Spaniard. I live in hope but Iím not holding my breath.
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/sport/tennis/article4232416.ece
He has a point, Federer isn't going for anything new while Nadal, Djokovic and the others are trying new things.

Sjengster
06-29-2008, 05:02 PM
This would be the same match against Gicquel where Federer won 21/25 points at the net in an 80-minute match, would it? And you can hardly blame him for reverting back to a baseline game against Hewitt, charging the net would play right into his hands.

CyBorg
06-29-2008, 05:04 PM
I've noticed that Pat Cash kind of sucks.

MrChopin
06-29-2008, 05:07 PM
I'd like to think that Rafa isn't dull, so he should charge the net.

scoobs
06-29-2008, 05:09 PM
So Mr Cash thinks it's a good plan to change his style of game after 62 consecutive wins on grass and 5 consecutive Wimbledon titles playing this way, so he can beat a player who he has never lost to on grass anyway?

I think you can guess what I think of this idea.

Forehander
06-29-2008, 05:20 PM
Yeah like Federer doesn't know that himself? The fact is grass court is 2x slower than it use to be and there's less chance of beating Nadal with S & V due to his jaw dropping passing shots. The game have changed so much, and you can't guarantee the fact taht Federer will lose to Nadal if they meet in the finals if he stays the way he is. In one tournament totally changing your whole style of play? Pat Cash is on crack IMO. The final last year, every aspect favoured Nadal, who played brilliant: the roof, the wind, hawkeye etc... but Federer still managed to pull it off. But if Federer loses, sure, it would be interesting to see some sudden surprise change in the future like he once did before. But one thing for sure, you just can't CHANGE YOUR STYLE OF PLAY RIGHT, you need TIME.

MissMelly2U
06-29-2008, 05:24 PM
If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Nadal and Djokovic have much more room for improvement than Roger because they are still relatively young, and their games have not completely matured.

elessar
06-29-2008, 05:32 PM
If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Nadal and Djokovic have much more room for improvement than Roger because they are still relatively young, and their games have not completely matured.
Crazy idea :rolleyes:
Clearly, being nearly 27 and a serious GOAT candidate, NOW is the time for Roger to change his game :sport: Rafa's total domination at the 4 majors OTOH shows there's no need for him to try and adapt to other surfaces :cool:

In other words, don't change Roger :inlove: you're perfect just as you are :inlove:

Sebby
06-29-2008, 05:34 PM
If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Nadal and Djokovic have much more room for improvement than Roger because they are still relatively young, and their games have not completely matured.

:eek:

Poor Fed... some more rough beatings are on your way :sad:

BigJohn
06-29-2008, 05:40 PM
Why on earth should Federer try to please Pat Cash? And should Federer take advice from one who won one single lonely Wimbledon title.


Winning one Wimbledon is great, but winning 5 is, well, 5 times better. I think I would have to go with what Federer think is best on this issue.

Manon
06-29-2008, 05:47 PM
Crazy idea :rolleyes:
Clearly, being nearly 27 and a serious GOAT candidate, NOW is the time for Roger to change his game :sport: Rafa's total domination at the 4 majors OTOH shows there's no need for him to try and adapt to other surfaces :cool:

In other words, don't change Roger :inlove: you're perfect just as you are :inlove:

Can't put in my sig but http://usera.imagecave.com/Manon/zzaplauz.gif

MissMelly2U
06-29-2008, 05:48 PM
:eek:

Poor Fed... some more rough beatings are on your way :sad:

Sad, but, in the end, probably true. In the mean time, Fed still owns the ATP.

Corey Feldman
06-29-2008, 05:59 PM
Cash is still raw at Fed

remember at the AO04 when he accused Mirka of sacking Lundgren and not Rog :lol:

i watched the tape of Fed- Philippoussis first Wimbledon final a few months ago and before the match started they asked Cash who he thought would win "I'm going for Mark, he's just gonna be too powerful"

yep, raw about that prediction as well :o

groundstroke
06-29-2008, 06:12 PM
This would be the same match against Gicquel where Federer won 21/25 points at the net in an 80-minute match, would it? And you can hardly blame him for reverting back to a baseline game against Hewitt, charging the net would play right into his hands.
Okay, not those 2 opponents, but others are stronger and better baseliners than him.
-
If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Nadal and Djokovic have much more room for improvement than Roger because they are still relatively young, and their games have not completely matured.
It is breaking, a few humiliating losses to players such as Fish, Murray, Stepanek means that people can understand his game now.
-
Yeah like Federer doesn't know that himself? The fact is grass court is 2x slower than it use to be and there's less chance of beating Nadal with S & V due to his jaw dropping passing shots. The game have changed so much, and you can't guarantee the fact taht Federer will lose to Nadal if they meet in the finals if he stays the way he is. In one tournament totally changing your whole style of play? Pat Cash is on crack IMO. The final last year, every aspect favoured Nadal, who played brilliant: the roof, the wind, hawkeye etc... but Federer still managed to pull it off. But if Federer loses, sure, it would be interesting to see some sudden surprise change in the future like he once did before. But one thing for sure, you just can't CHANGE YOUR STYLE OF PLAY RIGHT, you need TIME.
Fed's almost 27, how much time do you need? He's losing more and more.
-
So Mr Cash thinks it's a good plan to change his style of game after 62 consecutive wins on grass and 5 consecutive Wimbledon titles playing this way, so he can beat a player who he has never lost to on grass anyway?

I think you can guess what I think of this idea.
But he will lose eventually and I think it will be this year to Nadall. For sure. It could even be 4 sets, not another 5 set thriller.
-

Pheobo
06-29-2008, 06:32 PM
Pat Cash also thinks that people care about what he has to say :shrug:

feuselino
06-29-2008, 06:34 PM
I don't know who I dislike more when it comes to "advice for Roger" - Cash or Wilander...

Magus13
06-29-2008, 07:07 PM
What these guys from the past claerly are unable to comprehend is that serve and volley and rushing the net is nearly suicide with the court speed, racquets and strings. Just watch some of the old matches and the difference is obvious. I love Sampras, Edberg, Mac and their incredible play at net. It just isn't as effective anymore. Fed does need top look to take the net at the right time on the right shot, but to do what Cash is suggesting would not be smart.

HeretiC
06-29-2008, 07:56 PM
From The Times Online...

He has a point, Federer isn't going for anything new while Nadal, Djokovic and the others are trying new things.

Great idea , he should revert to his style before 2003 and start getting killed again from Hewitt, Nalbandian, not even mentioning Nadal and Djokovic, with such game he will not win a single match against them on any surface.

This would be the same match against Gicquel where Federer won 21/25 points at the net in an 80-minute match, would it? And you can hardly blame him for reverting back to a baseline game against Hewitt, charging the net would play right into his hands.

What these guys from the past claerly are unable to comprehend is that serve and volley and rushing the net is nearly suicide with the court speed, racquets and strings. Just watch some of the old matches and the difference is obvious. I love Sampras, Edberg, Mac and their incredible play at net. It just isn't as effective anymore. Fed does need top look to take the net at the right time on the right shot, but to do what Cash is suggesting would not be smart.

:yeah:

fast_clay
06-29-2008, 08:44 PM
i think cash is actually right... but... just 4 weeks too late with his advice...

should've been more adventurous at roland garros...

federer DOES actually have the best forecourt game in tennis at the moment in my opinion... but, i dont think the time has come to re-invent himself...

Merton
06-29-2008, 08:50 PM
Knee-jerk suggestion.

Richard_from_Cal
06-29-2008, 09:04 PM
The Champion speaks, we must attend.

From The Times Online...

He has a point, Federer isn't going for anything new while Nadal, Djokovic and the others are trying new things.
More than just a point...makes a lot of sense. I live and hope that Marat will displace him.

Fed=ATPTourkilla
06-29-2008, 09:05 PM
The problem with Cash (and several others of his generation) is as follows. Serving and volleying was a very effective tactic on grass during his time. He simply cannot comprehend that it is not any more and just repeats "serve-volley good, serve-volley good" ad infinitum, like a robot. It reminds me of when a lot of pros started using the Luxilon strings. Tim Henman's second serve started taking an absolute pounding and some of the time he would stay back on it. However, we had to endure the idiot commentators preaching on and on about how he should continue to SV on second serve, even when he was winning about 25% of the points on it. You would even hear them praising him for SV as winner after winner went past him, "because he was persevering with his natural game." What a load of crock. These people just have their minds completely fixed on a wrong idea.

The standard of groundstrokes has gone up a lot since Cash was playing and the bounces on grass are a lot truer. 100% serve-volleying against Nadal would be a losing tactic - it would be like the charge of the light brigade. As for "experimenting" - Federer did that in an exhibition match against Roddick (100% SV on both serves) and he duly lost.

Allez
06-29-2008, 09:06 PM
Roger cannot win against Nadal playing the way he has been. The fact is that he has become way too predictable and Nadal has made massive improvements to his game. If Nadal came so close to winning here last year with his then limited skills on the grass, how much closer do you think he will be this year with his much improved game ? Roger needs to do something different. Hugging the baseline will not do against an opponent who is much younger and more powerful. Unfortunately I believe it is too late to change his game now....at least not for Sunday's final (if he survives Hewitt and the surging Ancic).

nobama
06-29-2008, 09:38 PM
Roger cannot win against Nadal playing the way he has been. The fact is that he has become way too predictable and Nadal has made massive improvements to his game. If Nadal came so close to winning here last year with his then limited skills on the grass, how much closer do you think he will be this year with his much improved game ? Roger needs to do something different. Hugging the baseline will not do against an opponent who is much younger and more powerful. Unfortunately I believe it is too late to change his game now....at least not for Sunday's final (if he survives Hewitt and the surging Ancic).Never in Doubt. Er...except you forgot the :unsure: or :scared:

SUKTUEN
06-30-2008, 01:03 AM
:rolleyes:

groundstroke
06-30-2008, 09:54 AM
Great idea , he should revert to his style before 2003 and start getting killed again from Hewitt, Nalbandian, not even mentioning Nadal and Djokovic, with such game he will not win a single match against them on any surface.





:yeah:
I'm not saying he should go back to being an amateur or play shitty tennis, but try and change a few things. Who said that it had to be serve and volley? It doesn't have to be. Federer needs to hit more flat forehands, not this "liquid whip" he calls it, better backhands and I would love to see him use more dropshots.

groundstroke
06-30-2008, 09:56 AM
Roger cannot win against Nadal playing the way he has been. The fact is that he has become way too predictable and Nadal has made massive improvements to his game. If Nadal came so close to winning here last year with his then limited skills on the grass, how much closer do you think he will be this year with his much improved game ? Roger needs to do something different. Hugging the baseline will not do against an opponent who is much younger and more powerful. Unfortunately I believe it is too late to change his game now....at least not for Sunday's final (if he survives Hewitt and the surging Ancic).
Thank you.. someone who sees this on my opinion, thing is, I like Federer and I'm seeing this. If Federer trashed Nadal something like 6-1 6-1 6-0, Nadal would want instant revenge. Federer got trashed by Nadal and I just don't see Federer being able to get his revenge on Nadal. He must come to the net as Nadal is better at baseline. Nadal should win the final.

anon57
06-30-2008, 10:06 AM
Thank you.. someone who sees this on my opinion, thing is, I like Federer and I'm seeing this. If Federer trashed Nadal something like 6-1 6-1 6-0, Nadal would want instant revenge. Federer got trashed by Nadal and I just don't see Federer being able to get his revenge on Nadal. He must come to the net as Nadal is better at baseline. Nadal should win the final.
Coming to the net against Nadal only works if the approach shot is absolutely perfect, if it's not there's a very good chance Federer will gets passed beacuse Nadal's passing shots are so good and he's so quick at getting to balls. When the opportunity is there to go to the net Federer should do that but in my opinion it shouldn't be a main strategy against Nadal to just charge the net.
And to me it only seems normal that for example Nadal and Djokovic are improving more at the moment than Federer, they're still young and they'll be hitting their peaks in a couple of years probably. Federer is nearing 27, he's not going to get much better that he was one or two years ago.

juninhOH
06-30-2008, 02:31 PM
the last time played serve and volley on grass he lost against tin henman and mario ancic, so stupid comment from pat cash.

Monteque
06-30-2008, 02:34 PM
in my opinion it shouldn't be a main strategy against Nadal to just charge the net.


Agree. Thats why now Federer relies on his serves more that in the past.
Honesty, imo... what had saved Fed from Nadal last year was his serves, much or less.

rwn
06-30-2008, 03:35 PM
Roger cannot win against Nadal playing the way he has been. The fact is that he has become way too predictable and Nadal has made massive improvements to his game. If Nadal came so close to winning here last year with his then limited skills on the grass, how much closer do you think he will be this year with his much improved game ? Roger needs to do something different. Hugging the baseline will not do against an opponent who is much younger and more powerful. Unfortunately I believe it is too late to change his game now....at least not for Sunday's final (if he survives Hewitt and the surging Ancic).

Nobody with an IQ above 50 believes you're a Federer fan. So.... get lost!