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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Can Federer hang on to his roll?

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By MaliVai Washington
Special to ESPN.com


I think the next two months in men's tennis are going to be the most exciting of 2003. Right now you have three guys in Andre Agassi, Roger Federer and Juan Carlos Ferrero, who legitimately have a chance at finishing this year as No. 1.


Roger Federer has already played a lot of tennis this year. He needs to be wary of burnout.


Ferrero has publicly said his goal is to finish the year as the No. 1 player in the world. This is Agassi's last, best chance to finish No. 1. Amazingly after such a great career, Agassi has only finished No. 1 in the world once -- in 1999. And Federer is finally realizing his potential, which is just now being to show itself.

The next two months include two Tennis Masters Series events and the U.S. Open. If one of these three players can stay healthy and get on a roll during that time will likely be the player who finishes No. 1.

I'm a little concerned at how much tennis Federer has played so far this year. In 2002, Federer had 58 singles wins. Already this year, he has 53 match wins in 16 tournaments. If he's not careful, he's going to burn himself out through one of the toughest stretches of the year -- the hot summer hard-court season in the States.

One thing that hasn't been tested with Federer is his longevity throughout the full season. Thus far this year, he's stood up to the test, but we still have a good five months to go with the year-end Masters Cup in November.

The tennis we saw from Federer at Wimbledon is the tennis that we could see from him for the next seven or eight years. Don't be surprised if at the end of this decade, Roger Federer has five or six Grand Slam titles to his name. The race for No. 1 this year is going to be awesome.

To get to No. 1 a player has to be able to perform on more than one surface. Certainly if you go down the list of top players, each one has a surface that might be considered his specialty. To finish No. 1 this year, that player will not only have to play well on their specialty surface but also on their second or third favorite surface. That will be the challenge for Ferrero this summer playing on hard courts. That was the challenge for Agassi in Paris and London. And the verdict is still out on what is truly the best surface for Roger Federer because prior to Wimbledon, he had never really proven himself at the majors but he might be that player who is able to prove himself on all surfaces and indeed win all four majors in his career. Stay tuned.

Ones to watch
A player who is trying to make a name for himself on the tour, just won his first title on the tour in Newport, Robby Ginepri. Ginepri is hoping to find himself on the Davis Cup team in the near future.


It's going to be a tough haul for Ginepri to make the Davis Cup team because Andy Roddick and James Blake are two mainstays. With the quality we're seeing from Bob and Mike Bryan in doubles, they might very well be the third and fourth players on the next Davis Cup team.

Unfortunately for Ginepri that could be the case for the next three years and he's going to have to prove himself week in and week out on the tour to replace Blake. Because right now, I don't see anyone replacing Roddick barring injury.

A player most people haven't heard of is Rafael Nadal of Spain, who might be the most talented teen-ager in the world right now. He's 17 years old and many people thought he had a chance to reach the second week of the French Open but because of his injury before Paris while trying to jump over the net, he didn't get to prove himself. I already know that he can play great tennis on clay courts. I can't wait to see this guy on the hard courts of the United States to really see how versatile he is because people are saying he can be a great player on more than just one surface.
 

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Thanks for posting this article, Tennis Fool. Do you think Hewitt should have been mentioned? I like that Ginepri got some play. He has really improved in the last 12 months. I don't want to see James replaced on the Davis Cup team. But, I do want to see Ginepri post good results on a consistent basis. I hope Ferrero can prove himself on surfaces other than clay. Guga started making that move before his surgery. I was really pulling for him. Do you remember Guga's USO five setter against Max? They were both awesome! I hope Federer doesn't burn himself out. I want to see more brilliance.
 

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Hewitt's going to have a tough time because he has so many points to defend in big tournaments (the US Open semi, the Masters Cup title). That being said, he's proved to everyone he can do these things. But it gets a little tricky when you consider that if he wants to defend his year end title he better do well the rest of the summer or he's not even going to make the field. Shocking! :eek:
 

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At least Hewitt can take comfort from the fact that he has few points to defend in between the US Open and Masters Cup. Just one noteworth result: Paris final.

Hey, for once I agree with Mal. These next few months will be very exciting! Can't wait to see who goes into the US Open as the world #1...
 

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Hey, I love Lley Lley, and I hope he can really get his fucking act together! C'mon Rocky!!

Moving on... Rogi is playing so much tennis!!! I am so scared he's gonna pull out of my tournament and I won't see him. I'm so scared... Rogi, calm down!

But best wishes to those two guys for the fall! I'll be keeping my eyes on them. Lleyton, PLEASE!

Hahaha! I'm like, laughing out loud about Nadal tripping over the net. Hehe. I never get over that. He is definitely on a spree, yeah. But I hope the future looks bright for Robby too!!!!!!!!!!! Be true, be true!!!!!!!!!!! :D
 

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Mrs_Guga said:
Hey, I love Lley Lley, and I hope he can really get his fucking act together! C'mon Rocky!!

Moving on... Rogi is playing so much tennis!!! I am so scared he's gonna pull out of my tournament and I won't see him. I'm so scared... Rogi, calm down!

But best wishes to those two guys for the fall! I'll be keeping my eyes on them. Lleyton, PLEASE!

Hahaha! I'm like, laughing out loud about Nadal tripping over the net. Hehe. I never get over that. He is definitely on a spree, yeah. But I hope the future looks bright for Robby too!!!!!!!!!!! Be true, be true!!!!!!!!!!! :D
I thought it was wildly hilarious when I found out. Like really, that's what you get for being a jerkoff in practice ;) It's too bad though... Im sure he'd be top 50 now if he'd have played RG. Oh well... maybe next week!
 

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I might add that "most people" haven't head of Nadal because Mal is talking about casual American fans who are exposed to as little foriegn talent as possible. But whatever, details.
 

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Hmmm I wouln't be surprised if Roger would skipp the first US tournament he had planed to play. Couse when beeing asked what his next tourny will be he said he'll deside after his holidays....
.... and Roger just skipp it for the sake of your health and stamenia ;)
 

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He probably will. I think he was worned out after Gstaad.

I for once agree with Mal!:eek:
 

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Doris Loeffel said:
Hmmm I wouln't be surprised if Roger would skipp the first US tournament he had planed to play. Couse when beeing asked what his next tourny will be he said he'll deside after his holidays....
.... and Roger just skipp it for the sake of your health and stamenia ;)
Hush....quit encouraging people to skip Montreal :fiery:
 

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Roger is planning to play Washington? But why, that tournament is going to have such a weak field. I hope he withdraws and gives his body a rest, for at least one week.
 

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Yes, he's entered for Washington. BTW, I don't know what your definition of a weak field is, but when a tournament has Agassi, Federer, Roddick, Srichaphan, Gonzalez, Kafelnikov and Blake as most of its top seeds then I find it hard to classify it as weak. Maybe all the more reason for Roger to skip it, given its strength... if it's not going to add anything new to his ranking, he'd be better off preparing for an extra week and going into Montreal firing on all cylinders.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Sjengster said:
Yes, he's entered for Washington. BTW, I don't know what your definition of a weak field is, but when a tournament has Agassi, Federer, Roddick, Srichaphan, Gonzalez, Kafelnikov and Blake as most of its top seeds then I find it hard to classify it as weak.
I think that a lot believe if Agassi or Roddick headline a tournament, then it must be a weak field :eek:
 
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