Re: Richard In The Australian Summer 2012- Hopman Cup
That was some impressive hitting from Richard when he was down and almost out in second set. I only watched from 1-4 down. I wish he could implement the aggressive forehand and aggressive returning in general to his overall game, not only when he has no pressure. Overall, lots of positives from Hopman Cup.
SOme good stuff from Richard against an opponent who was very stong. The major difference between Berdych (a top 10 player) and Richard (struggling to stay top 20) today was consistency and focus. Richard played well and went head to head with Berdych who served almost flawlessly but he was unable to keep that level up when crunch time came and then he faded away for about 5 more games after the tiebreak disaster. He got it together and started to put the pressure on but it was too late to dig out of his huge hole.
Even with Richard's passive court position and return (which was actually a LITTLE better today) he was able to hang in with Berdych until he lost focus. When and if Richard can play an ENTIRE match and more importantly an entire tournament at a consistently high aggressive level, top 10 is a real possibility but until that time Richard will always be close but not quite there. Berdych seemed to have found the focus/intensity last year, maybe 2012 is Richard's time.