05-01-2009, 02:59 PM
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Hong Kong
Re: Roger news and articles
April 30, 2009
R. FEDERER/R. Stepanek
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. Last year, you had more difficulty with his serve and net play last year. This year you dealt a lot better with it. What was the difference between you for the two games?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, I think maybe conditions were just a touch slower today than they were last year, as far as I remember. It's a long time ago. I think his serve worked really well against me last year, and I couldn't get a real proper read on his serve.
This year was very different. I could read his first serve. His second serve was not a problem either. I didn't have a problem even to attack his second serve, whereas last year I was just trying to get the ball into play, and then obviously he was able to mix it up and make me doubt much more.
This year was good. I had the control from the baseline, and he didn't have the opportunities like he did have last year. I played well really when I had to, so I'm really happy with the performance today.
Q. My question was about the same Roger. I have been beaten so many times on this court when I was young player. When you walk into the court and you have close to you the guy that beat you the previous year, what passes through your mind? You're thinking about that, or you try to forget?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, you think about it if you haven't played him again since, but I played him three times since the match here last year: US Open, I think, and Madrid and Shanghai. So I got three wins there.
I played very solid against him, and I, you know, really told myself I have to be very disciplined in my playing today, the way I play my tactical game against him and just the way I have to focus.
Last year I got a little bit unsure about my own game and he played well, and then I was not 100% sure of what I wanted to do. Sure, especially because it's the same court, you know, it's not a different center court. It's the identical court of last year.
Sure, when you walk on the court you still have sort of the highlights from that match. But, you know, you try to give it another shot. It's a different match. I'm still always going to be the favorite against him. I just tried and get off to a good start and I did, which is perfect.
Q. You played a couple of eccentric players in your first two matches here, players who it's difficult probably to get a really rhythm against. Having said that, do you feel as though you're striking the ball in the manner that you'd like to be after two matches here?
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I mean, I think today I definitely got some rhythm in, even though, like you say, he's still a player who likes to take the rhythm away or tries to take the net away, maybe tries to keep the points short at times.
It was still a good match for me. To me, I had to counter his pace because he's trying to play hard and flat. Who knows, maybe that's what I'll see against Gilles Simon as well.
I felt like I was hitting the ball well. Maybe from the movement side it's pretty slippery out there. I still have to find my footing just because I haven't had to do a lot of sort of defensive work yet. I think that's definitely going to happen in the next match.
Q. You mentioned Gilles Simon. He's a player who's had some success against you. What's been difficult about playing him for you in the past?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, we only played twice. Once I was coming back from injury, and it was tough in Shanghai. He played well both times I thought against me. He's very patient and he's is fantastic counterpuncher and he moves extremely well on clay.
Honestly, I haven't seen him play a match yet, but I'm sure that the guys at the top today can play on any surface. He for sure grew up on clay, so it shouldn't be a problem for him. No, but he makes it hard for the top guys just because he puts the ball in play and makes you hit the extra shot.
When you're moving extremely well, you know, especially having a lot of confidence, that can create some great plays. That's what he's really been able to do the last nine months to a year now.
Q. Did you wait for Francesco Totti or Ilary Riasi to see you?
ROGER FEDERER: I didn't see him. I missed him. I have to look at the telly again to make sure that he was really there. I didn't see him. I'm happy he came.
Q. When your first serve percentage was as low as it was in the first set, is there any conscious effort you can take, or just hope it gets better?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, yes, you hope it gets better. After a while if it's still not getting better, then you try to change it up a bit. I, you know, tried to take some pace off my serve and use more spin plays.
Because I'm still leading and winning, I still had the opportunity to go after it. I didn't care how much how high my first serve percentage was, as long as I was winning, you know. But it's definitely something I have to make sure, you know, I do better in the next match.
Towards the end, I actually served well again, and also in practice actually before the match I was serving well. So it's just a matter of now make sure that it happens during the next match.
Q. In Rome, were you more unhappy when you lost to Mantilla when you were strongly favored, or when you lost to Nadal and you had two match points? What was the most painful defeat between the two in your mind and that you recall afterwards?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, I mean, I don't know if I was big favorite going into the Mantilla match. I mean, I was still sort of young and, you know, unexperienced in finals of Masters Series tournaments. He was one of those guys that was always going to be hard for me to play against. Sure, he came through as kind of a surprise. But then seeing the players who he beat, I knew he was going to be extremely tough.
I don't know, it was disappointing losing that one because Mantilla wasn't a big name out there. Could have been a Kafelnikov in the final, or a Ferrero who was at the top of his game. But Especially after I think I beat Ferrero in the semifinals I was dreaming of winning this title. So I was -- I guess I was pretty disappointed in that one just knowing that I missed maybe a big opportunity.
Against Nadal, it was just nice being part of such a wonderful match. The moment itself, sure, I was not so disappointed, more angry that I missed such a big opportunity. But at the end the day, they both feel the same, you know. Just going through the trophy ceremony as the finalist is just not something that's a lot fun. You just try to get through it and try to take the positives out of it and move onto the next week.
Q. A lot of people write a lot of things and say a lot of things on TV programs about you and your career and your form. Do you listen to them or read it, or do you completely ignore it and get on with your own thing and let other people worry about what they talk about and write about?
ROGER FEDERER: Depends when. When I win, I read it. When I lose, I don't read it.
ROGER FEDERER: It's pretty simple. (Laughter.) Too often it's happened that I'm reading these funny things when I'm losing. That they know why I lost, you know, which is sometimes completely wrong. So I just started not to get carried away with it.
You know, too many friends are telling me like, It's going to be okay Roger. Don't worry. I'm like, What's the problem? There's no problem. Even my friends start to believe it, you know, so this is when I really know I shouldn't have a peek at the papers.
No, I mean, I guess it's something that I also have to get used to, just a bit more press that's just not always like in my favor. You know, just for the last five, six years I've been playing so well and I've been so dominant
there was really little to write about in a negative way.
All of a sudden some people think when you're only playing semifinals and the finals, you know, then things are kind of getting really tough, which is not the case. There's always reasons why you play well and why you don't.
Important thing is as a player you know what's going on. I'm very confident I know what's wrong and I know what's right. It's just important that I work hard and get back to my best play. I know I'm very close to it.
End of FastScripts
05-01-2009, 06:54 PM
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: somewhere over the rainbow
Re: Roger news and articles
Q. Is your level rising at the rate you want it to and you're pretty much where you want it to be, or still more to go?
ROGER FEDERER: No, I feel like it was a good match. Now again, it was the, again, different type of match. I really had to take the offensive because he was playing really far back in the court, and I think I did well. I didn't have to play that much defense. I had to come up with some passing shots, and I think it's always kind of good that you're on the back foot and you have to come up with some good shots at the right time. That was a good test. He's a great player. It was an interesting first match we had.
Q. Another boy of '87 like Novak and Murray, and another left hander. Do you think he's another left hander like Verdasco and Murray, they're increasing left-handers, or it's a normal situation?
ROGER FEDERER: We have very few left handers in the game, so it's pretty normal that there should be more coming. I can't imagine having fewer lefties than we had maybe two years ago. We had maybe maximum five in the top 100, which is was very little. So it's nice to have more of these guys. Seems like he's a talented player. I think he's got potential, and he showed it this week.
Q. Do you think there's less pressure on you when you player on clay now than before, in last years?
ROGER FEDERER: Not really. I think everywhere I go there is always pressure involved, because I still think people expect me to go far and win tournaments and so forth. So I feel the same way, as long as I know my game is up there so I can win tournaments. I'll also always have pressure. Even though today I see it a bit differently than when I was breaking through as a junior. It's nicer now anyway, because I'm always playing on center court and I have a full stadium, and that helps to play your best.
Q. The Djokovic semifinal, are you looking forward to that after Miami?
ROGER FEDERER: Sure. I mean, we had semis in Monaco last year on clay. I don't know if we played another time on clay. Actually, Monaco a few years before that in the first round when he was coming up. We haven't had each other that much on clay. Sees like he's playing well again. He came through very convincing against good players, so I expect a good match. I hope I can play better than in Miami.
Rogelio no complain he good boy no?
05-03-2009, 04:22 PM
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Hong Kong
Re: Roger news and articles
May 2, 2009
N. DJOKOVIC/R. Federer
4-6, 6-3, 6-3
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. How did it get away from you after the rain delay, if that's the case?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, I mean, I was in good shape. Maybe also a little pity that I didn't get the break to go 3-0 before the rain delay.
But after that, actually I started okay. I thought he came through with a bit more energy, you know, after the rain delay. Before that he was pretty flat.
So that was maybe -- you know, all of a sudden it became a different match and he played better, you know. Should have held once, you know, to not give away one of the breaks at least. Then I would have had a better opportunity.
No, I thought he was playing better. Definitely had the win on my racquet today, so it's pretty disappointing.
Q. If you compare with the match in Miami, are you more dissatisfied by this match, or the same feeling?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, Miami was a difficult one just because I played pretty good in the first set. Thought I was actually playing, you know, sort of in control, and then I completely lost control.
You know, so this time around it was different. I was in the match obviously all the way through. Feel like this is not a match I should have given away, you know, because break up in the second, break up in the third, and I usually don't give away opportunities like this.
So it's bad, but I still have some work to do on the clay. I think I'm playing better obviously than Monaco. The hard work has been paying off. But just got to fix my serve a little bit. I have the feeling that maybe since I had the back problem, my serve is just not working there where I want it to be.
I think then -- I feel that in the tough it maybe could have saved me a few times and it didn't, so that's something I have to make sure I can fix for Paris.
Other than that, there was some good moments, sure, which is a good thing. Also some bad ones. I have to make sure they don't happen as frequently, obviously.
Q. You had some problems with your backhand, and you made a lot of backhand errors towards the end of the game.
ROGER FEDERER: I thought the ball was definitely flying more when we came back after the rain delay. Things kind of got warmer, and there was more bounce in the ball. Yeah, maybe I was just miss-timing them a bit. That's the reason, I guess.
You know, but I wish it would have been a bit more solid. But, honestly, I don't think I lost the match because of my backhand.
Q. Would you actually like to play Nadal on clay before you get to Paris? I know you can't do it here. It can only happen once more, and that's in Madrid. Would prefer to go in to Paris having tested yourself against him on clay, or does it not matter?
ROGER FEDERER: Doesn't really matter to me. I mean, I think the last few years it's helped Rafa playing me before Paris. Just that he knew maybe a bit more what to expect from me, whereas you know exactly what you're going to get with Rafa. So I think it maybe worked more in in his favor the last few years.
We'll see how Madrid turns out. If we have to play each other, I still think it's a great match and I would look forward to that. But the focus is elsewhere right now.
Q. From the stands it seemed that the second and third set when you lost your serve you rushed a little bit in these games. Is that the feeling you have, or is it something else?
ROGER FEDERER: Not really. I mean, I tried to take my time and focus on my serve and make sure I start off the point well. Potentially, you know, I try always not to rush too much. That's what he was doing as well when it wasn't going his way in the beginning of the second set. It's always something you try to slow down a bit, you know.
But I didn't have the feeling I was particularly rushing. Points were just going quickly, you know, because he would hit it close to the baseline and I was made an error and not get my first serve in.
Obviously at Love-30 things are not that easy anymore, you know. No, but you try to take your time and go step by step. But sometimes it just goes quick when you play bad.
Q. How will you prepare now? Will you go Italy someplace, or back to Switzerland?
ROGER FEDERER: No, I'd like to go back to Switzerland. I've been on the road again for a few weeks here, so I'd like to go there and make sure I get early enough to Madrid and get used to the altitude. Just make sure I'm in good shape over there.
Q. You said at the start of the week that you thought getting to the semifinal would be kind of satisfactory. You might have an idea where your game is. With the circumstances today, is that kind of a disappointment now that you haven't gone all the way and gone to tomorrow?
ROGER FEDERER: At the end, it's always disappointing for me when I exit a tournament losing a match? I've gotten used to winning tournaments, you know, and then leaving a tournament having lost just leaves a bitter taste, obviously.
It doesn't take me long to get over it, but in the moment itself it's just not really fun. Because it's just these kind of matches I feel like I should have won here and I end up losing them, so it's just not a good feeling.
It's just a matter of getting back in shape and, you know, playing good hopefully in Madrid again.
Q. You think we would have seen a different match if it wasn't raining? Not to find an excuse; you don't need that.
ROGER FEDERER: Speculation. I mean, I think things were going well for me. You know, I was playing him well and serving well when I had to and putting him under pressure. So it kind of definitely changed the momentum.
I mean, the rain delay came at a perfect moment for him, because he came through a tough service game at 2-0 down. Instead of going 3-0, he goes 2-1 and then the rain comes, so he's got something positive to look at.
Then when he comes back conditions changed, so, sure, it helped him. But then again, who knows. He might have come back anyway and beat me in the end. He did well today to use the rain delay in his favor, that's for sure.
End of FastScripts
05-05-2009, 06:13 PM
Join Date: Aug 2006
Re: Roger news and articles
Federer's losses no longer an anomaly
By Greg Garber
AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia
The manner in which Roger Federer has been losing is disconcerting.
For the sixth time this year, Roger Federer failed to win a tennis tournament. And so for the sixth time, the media's forensic psychologists tried to get a fix on the 27-year-old champion's bruised psyche.
"I've gotten used to winning tournaments, and then leaving a tournament having lost just leaves a bitter taste, obviously," Federer told reporters Saturday in Rome. "It doesn't take me long to get over it, but in the moment itself it's just not really fun because it's just these kind of matches I feel like I should have won here, and I end up losing them.
"I usually don't give away opportunities like this."
Federer won the first set of his semifinal match against Novak Djokovic, but after forging service breaks early in the second and third sets, he ultimately fell 6-4, 3-6, 3-6. It was, tellingly, Federer's first loss to Djokovic on clay. More unsettling was the way he lost.
Federer was up 3-1 in the final set, but three consecutive unforced errors handed Djokovic the opportunity to break back and draw even. Moreover, Federer's backhand all but evaporated. He simply, sadly, unraveled.
Afterward, Federer said that an hourlong rain delay during the second set "kind of definitely" changed the match's momentum. His serve was broken five times in the final two sets.
"I have the feeling that maybe since I had the back problem, my serve is just not working to where I want it to be," Federer said. "It maybe could have saved me a few times and it didn't, so that's something I have to make sure I can fix for Paris."
Rain, bad back, indifferent serve -- to some, those will kind of definitely sound like excuses. For Federer, they were rational explanations for this very specific loss. But with the French Open only a few weeks away, there is a larger, more troubling picture developing.
With the loss to Djokovic, Federer is now an astonishing 0 for his last 11 in matches against his three closest rivals atop the tennis food chain: Rafael Nadal (0-5), Andy Murray (0-4) and Djokovic (0-2).
So when does an anomaly become a trend?
"That's a good question," Paul Annacone said on Monday.
Annacone has rare insight into Federer's struggles; he coached Pete Sampras -- the man to whom Federer is most often compared -- for eight years. Today, Annacone is the coach of men's tennis for the Lawn Tennis Association, Great Britain's version of the USTA. He remembers the drought that followed Sampras' triumph at Wimbledon in 2000 -- 26 months and 33 tournaments without lifting a trophy -- before he won his 14th and final major, the 2002 U.S. Open.
"You're in that same press conference over and over again," Annacone said. "When are you going to win again? Are you a step slower? Now that you're married, are you thinking about stopping? Negative questions every week.
"I don't care who you are, it's going to affect you. It might not be much, but that 2 percent can make a difference. And then Pete's losing to Wayne Arthurs. A lot of people can look at the tennis, but very few people can look at the man, assess the issues in his life, the chronology of events in his career and say definitively, 'Here's what's wrong.'"
Roger Federer is 0 for his last 11 versus the other members of the Big Three.
Annacone has a little more than a year left on his contract with the LTA, but he seems uniquely qualified to navigate Federer's course toward the end of his career. He says he hasn't talked with Federer, who has been searching for a full-time coach since his four-year association (2000 to '03) with Peter Lundgren. According to Annacone, there are probably "4 million" applicants for the job.
"You can't just put anyone in there and have it work," Annacone said. "Ultimately, it's up to the player. You have someone who is steel-willed and incredibly confident and incredibly stubborn as well. You have to have buy-in.
"Roger is similar to Pete in so many tactical and technical ways. The first four, five years he killed everybody, but didn't necessarily get any better. If you don't see the urgency, you probably aren't going to get better."
It's safe to say Federer is starting to feel that sense of urgency. His last tournament title came in his hometown of Basel, Switzerland, in October 2008. Since then, he has gone 0-for-8. His record this year is 21-6. For context, consider that from 2004 to 2007 he averaged six losses a season.
Nadal (38-3) and Murray (29-4) have separated themselves from the field.
"When Rafa started to play so well, I said, 'Terrific, now Roger has to get better,'" Annacone said. "That's a problem for some people, but not guys like Roger, who have so many tools. Roger feels it, but I'm not sure he knows exactly how to go about doing it.
"His life is more complicated now -- he just got married and he's about to become a father. But, just as in Pete's case, those aren't reasons that he's not winning. They're components of your life that you have to deal with. Roger sees it, but he just hasn't found the right balance yet."
It was during an eight-month sabbatical from Annacone when Sampras suffered one of his most crushing defeats in 2002. The seven-time Wimbledon champion lost at the All England Club to George Bastl, ranked No. 145, in the second round. A few weeks and several heart-to-heart talks later, the two were reunited and Sampras went on to win the U.S. Open.
As things stand, that unlooked-for victory is all that separates Sampras and Federer in terms of majors.
Sampras was 31 when he won his final Open, meaning Federer probably has something approaching a four-year window to surpass him.
"I'd be shocked if he doesn't win more Grand Slam titles," Annacone said. "If he has any of the same drive that Pete had, I'd be absolutely shocked. They're wired differently than most players. They expect to win -- no matter what the circumstances.
"Look at talent level and what he's able to produce. Take all those ingredients and corral them, manage them just a little better, and he can win again."
Del Potro * Dimitrov * Wawrinka * Chiudinelli * Haas * Pospisil * Huta Galung
Edberg * Rafter * Stich * Nalbandian
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