i made the point when we were chatting about it before the match though...Sjengster said:Yes, and before you say anything else, Nalbandian was below par it seemed to me. Mind you, Federer was more solid in the rallies than I was expecting.
that's the point. federer is much better than he used to be, specifically mentally. nalbandian has not improved at all!Sjengster said:But rarely against Federer - that TMC match seemed like an aberration to me, and it's worth pointing out that his performance here was nowhere near as bad as that. The big difference is that Federer is a lot more disciplined on Naba's service games than he used to be in the past. Nalbandian could throw his serve away before back in 2003 and still win the match, because he then could break Federer in response and Federer would get frustrated and eventually make no headway on Dave's serve. Now, he makes him play on a consistent basis and with Federer making fewer errors in the rallies, Nalbandian struggles to find ways to establish a winning tactic.
the issue is he can find a way to beat people, and he will continue to dominate against nalbandian from here on in i think. to be fair he has already won their last 3 meetings, losing only one set in the process.Sjengster said:Yep. I wasn't convinced of that until Thursday night, though, just because they haven't matched up against each other on court for so long now. I still feel Federer has to walk a tightrope in the rallies, Petch pointed out he couldn't give Nalbandian too much pace to feed off and instead he had to just get the ball back with little pace on it, often times doing all the retrieving, and either wait for a Naba UE or else goad him into dropping the ball short so Federer could suddenly accelerate to hit the winner. It's certainly a play he hasn't had to use against most other opponents.