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Discussion Starter #1
So yeah if you look at Novak, even before his 2011 rise, he was mentally pretty strong, ie USO '10 gutsy play against Federer. Then if you look at him during his peak, again, he was very mentally strong saving MPs against Federer and Tsonga at RG '12 like it was nothing. Then all of a sudden, starting from like USO '12 where he tried to hit another blistering FH on MP, he seems to have lost all mental edge. And by mental edge I don't just mean the mental edge on match points but little things now disturb him and make him lose his focus, little misses during matches seems to fuck up his rhythm and play.

Has any player ever gone from such a mental giant to a mental midget, or vice versa, as drastically as No2e?? Nadal has always remained a mental giant throughout his career. Federer has always been a little bit of a mental midget but hid it well during his prime because he was never required to face many tight moments due to his greatness. Murray has always remained a mental midget, perhaps slightly improving recently but the improvement in his mental approach is nowhere near as drastic as the decline of Nole's mental toughness.

Why has this happened? there has to be a reason. I refuse a player can decline so much in mental toughness in a matter of a months [You can clearly start to see the decline in Novak's mental ability as early as USO '12]
 

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Lajovic has definitely improved, he was the king choker for years and now he's just...below average. Gulbis has improved as well, so has Roger-Vasselin. None became a mental giant though, just less bad chokers.

Djokovic's mental decline has sure been dramatic. From 2012 French Open onwards, he's gone from mental giant to severe choker. Federer certainly worsened too.

P.S. I think Murray is very underrated mentally, considerably better than post-peak Federer
 

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Federer has gone from a genius who always played the right shot to a goof who always plays the wrong shot. Terrible placement in recent years from the GOAT.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Federer has gone from a genius who always played the right shot to a goof who always plays the wrong shot. Terrible placement in recent years from the GOAT.
That's because of his loss of speed. Although his game didn't rely that much physically it relied quite a bit on his footwork and his loss of movement has meant he can't get into the right position to hit the shots he used to with ease in his prime. Hence his errant placement in recent years. It's not like he's doing that on purpose on he can but has lost the talent to do it.
 

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Everyone loses their mental strength as they get older, as they lose their physical abilities.
 

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You could argue that the mental jump was made by Federer between his younger years and then finally breaking through to utilize his talent is the biggest jump. He just didn't have it together mentally for his younger years but once he figured it out, look what happened.
 
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When youlose your legs everything else, except power starts to go

Djokovic is mentally very very strong

He's playing the clay goat, it was a shame that he couldn't keep his set one form going

Buy watching federer do that for years, you realise it's nadal who improves not the other guy choking
 
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You could argue that the mental jump was made by Federer between his younger years and then finally breaking through to utilize his talent is the biggest jump. He just didn't have it together mentally for his younger years but once he figured it out, look what happened.
Agreed

He was Hewitt nalbandian and agassis bitch and he just took it to another level

but nadal on clay is something very special
 

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As far as negative change though, Djokovic has to take the cake.
 

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Everyone loses their mental strength as they get older, as they lose their physical abilities.
Agassi seemed to somehow be the reverse- arguably as fit as ever and mentally strong as ever at 30+
 

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Agassi seemed to somehow be the reverse- arguably as fit as ever and mentally strong as ever at 30+
He was the exception though. Most players lose their confidence after losing speed/consistency.
 

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After 2 final losses, Mahut became a final GOAT and won two titles.
 

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Djokovic enjoyed being the underdog. He was like the pantomime villain, pulling out outrageous shots when Federer was on the brink of winning/going into the final of the USO. After his phenomenal season in 2011, he was no longer an underdog and maybe he couldn't deal with the pressure of being the favourite. His tennis got a lot more defensive, he wasn't going for broke with big shots anymore.

The defensive approach worked well against Nadal, but it took away something from Djokovic's original game and now he almost seems confused on how to play the big points.
 

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Federer has become a mental midget in the final sets.
 

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Tsonga for sure.
Tsonga's level decreased he's still clutch considering how bad for his standards he is these 2 years. i think he's saved a very high % of bps against him this year.
 

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Nadal's mentality has declined too. He's terrible at converting BPs nowadays for instance and look how much the AO loss affected him. It happens to all players as they get older and suffer dissapointments and that youthful feeling of invincibility fades.
 

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Martina Hingis.

Just like Novak her best slam was the AO, and just like him she had a similar unbelievable year (1997). Then she remained in the top 2 for years, making many slam finals but losing and sometimes choking away leads (vs Pierce, Graf, Capriati...). And just like Novak she kept winning big titles outside the slams. And finally, just like Novak, the only slam she didn't win was RG and both made 2 finals. Both also won 1 Wimbledon & 1 US Open, and both have a negative record in slam finals.

Ironic. Is Novak's destiny like Hingis?


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Nadal's mental strength is starting to slightly decline as noticeably this year, he's starting to drop serve every time he's about to serve for the set or has a break.
 
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