Roger's options after Miami '09 [Archive] -

Roger's options after Miami '09

04-06-2009, 03:27 PM
Roger became so good due to his inherently strong belief that his game will click over the period of a match if he just keeps playing the way he normally does. Even then, at the height of his ascendancy (2006, for example), he had the awareness to "grind" out matches when he was not feeling the ball well.

I suspect that the racket smash made him realize that he can't rely on any facet of his game to bail him out during a tough stretch of the match. That, in my opinion, is a sobering reality that he faces as he prepares for the clay season. Since his game is not clicking under pressure and he seems to have lost awareness of when to grind it out, he has the following options:

1) Play a safe game from now on until he starts feeling the ball better. By this I mean use lots of loopy strokes to keep the ball in play and wait for the opponent's error.

2) Go for all out aggression until he finds the balance again. By this I mean move forward at the slightest opportunity and be ok with frequent passes.

Both of these options have the risk of him losing matches early on in tournaments but he needs to stop the bleeding and take a long term view.

My opinion is that he needs to use option 1 for the clay season but that means that he needs to be physically very fit to carry out that option successfully.

The one month that he has should be used to practice towards the first option and if he feels he is not there yet, skip Rome and/or Madrid.

I hope he realizes that he is not going to be #1 this year and if he is to be believed, if he is not #1, he doesn't care about his ranking anymore. He should use that to his advantage and re-build his game from the ground up.


04-07-2009, 12:53 AM
Not so sure Roger has safe game in him IMO. Playing safe against Roddick or Karlovic is all I’ve seen. He may be able to grind out a little better on clay. But I don’t see how his backhand would hold up. (Even his forehand nowadays. He was hitting lines for a minute or two, then wayward, homerun, bottom net shots after shots….) :o

Does anyone think he is having fitness issue? But these are best of 3 matches though.