Alex’s thoughts on Andy Murray’s Wimbledon win

It may be a month overdue but I’ve still got to get my thoughts out on this. After all, this was a great win for him and finally brought an end to the UK’s 76 year Wimbledon title drought (Geez, even my grandpa isn’t that old.)

Isn’t it great? We’ll never have to hear that statistic again!

I was surprised that the final wasn’t more closely contested. Probably a lot of it had to due with the crowd, playing too big of a factor in the outcome.

Poor Nole. Can you imagine trying to win Wimbledon, when fifteen thousand people are cheering against you? Cheering every time you double fault and nearly swarming the stadium, during the final game of the match. Especially, while you’re desperately trying to make a come back.

The crowd, would have made it almost impossible for anyone to have beaten Andy on this day. But to his credit, the Scott brought his A-game to the finals and Novak clearly looked tense.

This win, puts him in a different stratosphere. Andy Murray, is now officially part of the “Big Four.” I know this isn’t anything new. He’s been considered as part of that group for years. But up until recently that status has been debatable. With two grand slams, he can now be considered a legitimate threat. Instead of a “dark horse.”

All I can say is that I hope the second slam has given him a lot of confidence. Going into the US Open, with a star studded field, Djokovic, Del Potro, Federer, and a refreshed Nadal, it will take everything he’s got to retain it.

Back at last!

Hey there guys,

Alex Daniels, here. I’m going to try to resurrect my long since dead blog, by posting a few articles about the 2013 Championships. I really am sorry to my followers. I’ve had a lot of changes happen in the past year of my life. Some for the good, some for the bad, and I just haven’t kept up with my blog, whatsoever.

Oh well, it’s never too late to change that.:)

Actually, I do have some good news. I’ve acquired some new equipment since the last time I posted. So from time to time, I’m going to be putting up product reviews. Keep your eyes out for that.

I also switched racquets from the Head MicroGel Radical Pro to the Wilson KFactor 6.1 95 (Del Potro’s old model.)

WPVR61-1So far, I’m really enjoying the new stick. It wasn’t as different from the MicroGel as I thought it would be. The main difference between them is the KFactor is not as powerful or forgiving. It’s also a lot heavier. Especially in the head.

Overall, I’m really happy with this racquet. For the strings, I’ve been using Babolat RPM Blast (16G) which has worked out great. These strings, do offer a lot of spin precision and the durability has been good so far. No broken strings.

But with that said, I’m still looking around at other options. In fact, I just bought some Luxilon ALU Power for my next string job.

As for the pro game, I’m really amazed by what’s transpired over the past year. Who would have predicted Nadal to be out for seven months? And then he comes back and steamrolls a path for his twelth grand slam title at the French Open. After he wins, there’s talk about Nadal getting back to number one, by the end of the year. Maybe even winning another Wimbledon title. Then just like last year, boom. He’s out of the tournament almost immediately. With Roger Federer, joining him shortly thereafter.

We’re all in shock from these upsets but nobody is going to benifit more from it than Andy Murray. This is HIS CHANCE to win Wimbledon. No Federer, no Nadal, nobody really threatening to him in his half of the draw and even if he has to face Novak in the finals, he’s got the comfort of knowing that he’s been able to beat him in a slam final. That and grass is Nole’s worst surface.

I really like Andy’s chances. He seems to be playing really well, so far. With some luck, I think he could win Wimbledon. But Novak Djokovic is still the favorite.

So what do you think? Are you going with Djokovic? Are you going with Murray? Maybe someone else entirely? Leave me a comment and let me know.

2012 Wimbledon finals

Hey everyone, sorry for the extended delay of this post. My busy schedule sometimes keeps me away from my blog. But I’m back to talk about the Wimbledon final between Federer and Murray. Federer and Murray? Yeah, what an odd combination. For the last four slams it’s been Djokovic/Nadal but finally we have some new faces. Well maybe not new but atleast different. 

The match was very good. The kind of high quality you’d expect from a Wimbledon final. Andy Murray, has long been pursuing his first grand slam title. Just like Agassi was, twenty years earlier. The ironic thing is that both Andy and Andre had lost there previous slam finals before making the breakthrough at Wimbledon. Both were considered to be the underdog and neither player was considered a likely candidate to win this tournament. Andre, won his final against Goran Ivanisevic. Would history repeat itself for Murray? 

As the match unfolded Murray found himself quickly in control. He broke Roger at the start of the match, then a tug of war ensued between them. They exchanged breaks of serve but ultimately Murray closed out the first set 6-4. 

In set two, Murray had real opportunities to get a stranglehold but seemingly floundered his chances. He was making inroads on Roger’s serve and it looked like he might be able to take the second set in a tie-break. A few lucky points from Roger gave him the second set 7-5.

Set three went to Federer after an incredible battle at 3-2. Murray, threw everything he had at the Swiss but it wasn’t enough. After losing this game and conceding the break the momentum of the match was clearly with Federer. He blew through the third set with very few mistakes. Roger won the third set 6-3.

In the fourth set Roger, got an opportunity early on and pounced on it. From then on it was a forgone conclusion. Murray, had too much hill to climb, though he never stopped trying. Roger served out the match at 5-4 to win his seventh Wimbledon and seventeenth slam overall. 

After giving an emotional post match interview Andy Murray was cheered on by his home crowd. Roger, praised Murray’s performance, saying he was certain Murray would win a slam at some point in his career.

I agree with Roger. Murray, played great. It wasn’t like in the other slams where he stormed in playing brilliant tennis and then seemed to whither up and die in the finals. Murray, competed hard from start to finish. Were he able to win the second set, I think he would taken the match from Roger. In the future he will remain a viable contender to win slams. I believe he’s going to have a lot more opportunties.

Federer, winning his seventeenth slam at Wimbledon, just staggers me. No one has ever come close to that kind of number, I mean Pistol only had fourteen. Roger, is now in a class by himself. How many more. can he get? Could he reach twenty? At 30 years old I don’t think it’s likely but with a couple more Wimbledons and the US Open Federer could end up with twenty slams. Or more. Scary isn’t it?

Thanks to the win, Roger is ranked on top again and has broken Pete’s record of most weeks at number one. (Poor Pete, his records are just getting trashed this month.) I admit, that’s a record I didn’t think he’d be able to pull off when he lost the top rank to Nadal two years ago. I and a lot of others thought that Fed’s days at number one were over. Turns out we were wrong, Fed surprised all of us and now he’s number one again. 

With the US Open series starting next month, the players will be returning to the States to duel it out across North America. Expect the number one ranking to be up for grabs in the weeks to come.

Wimbledon semi-final preview

It’s been a long slog for these guys but they’re nearly at the finish line now. The only thing standing between them and the Wimbledon trophy is each other. Blocking Roger Federer’s path is the top seed Novak Djokovic. While Andy Murray, has to go through Jo Wilfried Tsonga.

It should go without saying that Roger Federer, is a fantastic grass court player. Will his past experience and success at Wimbledon be enough to overcome the athleticism and power of Novak Djokovic? I think so. Grass, is a rewarding surface for players who like to attack. The ball doesn’t bounce as high and it moves through the court quickly. Roger, will be able to play the match on his own terms without having to out-grind a younger and more physical opponent from the baseline.

Andy Murray vs Jo Wilfried Tsonga, is a tough one to call. Tsonga, is the better grass court player but he’s not as consistent as Andy Murray. It’s going to be decided based on how well Tsonga plays. If he comes out flat and doesn’t light up the crowd with his shot making, the match will go to Murray. But if he’s bombing aces and crushing forehands, then it should fall to Tsonga.

My prediction is Federer will play Tsonga for the Wimbledon championship this Sunday.

Alex’s review of the Wimbledon quarters

We’ve now reached the quarter-finals stage of Wimbledon. Let’s take a look at the draw and see how my predictions went.

The ones I got right are in bold.

1. Novak Djokovic vs 18. Richard Gasquet

3. Roger Federer vs 8. Janko Tipsarevic

9. Juan Martin Del Potro vs 4. Andy Murray

5. Jo Wilfried Tsonga vs Benoit Paire

So I was four for eight. Not bad, but not too great either.:( I was right with which top seeds would make it through but got the lesser ranked players horribly wrong. I didn’t expect so many upsets, but it has made the tournament more interesting. Shining the spotlight on guys like Phillip Kolhscrieber and Leonardo Mayer, who would normally be out by the quarter-finals.

The four lower seeds, are at a distinct disadvantage. Only one had made the quarter-finals before (and that was eight years ago.) Tsonga, Federer, Djokovic, and Murray have all gone deep in the draw, many times. Their supperior in weaponry, versatility, and experience. Honestly, I can’t see the lower seeds having much of a chance against them. Even with some astonishing upsets, I expect the remaining top seeds will make it through this round without too much difficulty.

They stole my idea!

A couple months ago, I stumbled across this thread on tennisopolis. The op was a t-shirt designer,  looking for tennis related sayings to put on his product. I came up with “You got served” posted it, then forgot about it until last week when I was flipping through an online tennis store and found a t-shirt with the exact same saying. Well, pretty much.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I had to laugh when I saw this. Apparently Nike thought it was a good idea as well.:)

Seeds take heavy cassualties on day four. Nadal is out!!!!!!!!

What just happened here. Am I seeing things or did a qualifier just knock off the two time Wimbledon champion? As unbelievable as it may sound Lukas Rosol, ranked #100 in the world, took out Nadal in a five set match. I picked Nadal to win Wimbledon, so not only does this victory give Rosol, a massive confidence boost but it opens up the draw and gives players like Brian Baker and Phillip Kohlscrieber a realistic look at reaching the quarter-finals. Rosol, has done what every qualifier dreams of doing. Playing the match of his life against a highly revered legend and grinding out the win in a furious five set showdown. I had to look up the last time Nadal lost this early. It was Wimbledon 2005. Can you believe that? Seven years of reaching the finals or winning (not including ’09.) This is the first person, aside from Djokovic to have beaten him at a slam, in over a year and he wasn’t even ranked inside the top 100.

So, yeah this upset opens up the draw quite a bit. Of the bottom half players, Tsonga or Murray are the two most likely to benefit from this. Even though I had originally predicted Murray to lose early, it looks like I’m going to have to revise my statement.

Murray, put up an impressive win over Karlovic and with no Nadal in his section, Andy’s road suddenly looks a lot better. Things are shaping up nicely for him.

There were a few surprising upsets in the top half as well, with Ernst Gulbis knocking off the tenth seed Tomas Berdych in three tie-breaks. He then fell to Jerzy Janowizic in a close five setter. Another guy, who you’ve just never heard of before. Makes you wonder if it’ll be a turning point in their careers? Certainly, in Rosol’s case. He’s going to have his name etched in history as the guy who ended Nadal’s run at the finals.

As far as the top half is concerned. Federer and Djokovic look the most promising to advance. That doesn’t come as a surprise. Djokovic, may have to go through his Davis Cup buddy Victor Troicki, to reach the quarter-finals. Troicki has only beaten Djokovic once, but he has been known to give him competitive matches.

I can’t see anyone getting the better of Roger, until the semis. He’s looked sharp so far and again with Nadal out he’s got a good chance at winning another slam. If he can get past Nole, he can handle anyone else, left in the draw.

Now, for my revised prediction. First the quarter finals:

1. Novak Djokovic vs 18. Richard Gasquet

3. Roger Federer vs 8. Janko Tipsarevic

9. Juan Martin Del Potro vs 4. Andy Murray

5. Jo Wilfried Tsonga vs Benoit Paire

from there to the semi-finals

1. Novak Djokovic vs 3. Roger Federer

4. Andy Murray vs 5. Jo Wilfried Tsonga

and then the finals

3. Roger Federer vs 5. Jo Wilfried Tsonga

With the Wimbledon winner being Roger Federer.