Wimbledon – Djokovic v Nadal

Were others watching the Wimbledon final? What a heavyweight battle. The quality of individual points was even better than Federer v Nadal 2008.

40 Comments

  1. Alan
    Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 11:11 AM | Permalink | Reply

    It was superb. I loved Djokovic’s serve and volley serving for the match at 30-30; the only one he played.

  2. Venter
    Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 11:14 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Brilliant game. Djoikovic was a worthy winner.

  3. LearDog
    Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 11:29 AM | Permalink | Reply

    I was watching the Final whilst ‘reading’ the previous post below. I think that I’m going to have to go back and re-read…..ha ha ha!

  4. Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 11:34 AM | Permalink | Reply

    But back-to-back, opposing 6-1 sets?
    Never seen that in a major final.

  5. Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 11:43 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Were they using hockey sticks?

  6. Robin Edwards
    Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 11:53 AM | Permalink | Reply

    My TV has been on every afternoon for the last three weeks. A highlight of the year.

    It was indeed a cracking match, but so were many others in the tournament. I enjoyed all I watched.

    Now this week the Tour de France has begun, which willmean another three weeks at the goggle-box. Oh dear!

  7. See - owe to Rich
    Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 12:58 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Yes, cracking match, and I was rooting for Djokovic to win (and Kvitova yesterday too, so I’m happy!). It’s nice to have a new Wimbledon winner, and he played superbly well apart from the 3rd set.

    A lot of players might have got disheartened on losing a break to a jammy net-cord in the 4th set, but Djokovic took it in his stride and just kept pummelling Nadal like no-one (except Federer a few years ago) has been able to pummel him.

    Wow, no tie-breaks!

    Rich.

  8. Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 1:24 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I agree; normally for me the tournament is ‘over’ as soon as Federer is out, so I didn’t expect too much from the final, but what a surprise. The second set was the best tennis Djokovic played ever on grass. The same happened by the way during the Australian Open final where Djokovic played three incredible sets against Murray.
    Marcel

    • See - owe to Rich
      Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 1:34 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Marcel, yep “three incredible sets against Murray” is great, but sets against Nadal, who for a few hours more is No. 1 in the world, is an order of magnitude more impressive.

      Rich.

    • Steve McIntyre
      Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 2:10 PM | Permalink | Reply

      I used to agree with you, but there’s a real changing of the guard. Federer isn’t Federer any more. He’s more like Agassi when Agassi was still dangerous but not the top. It’s too bad that you don’t get ESPN2 in Europe, because, as we chatted about, the clay court matches between Djokovic and Nadal this year were extraordinarily high calibre and presaged this..

      • See - owe to Rich
        Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 4:18 PM | Permalink | Reply

        This may be false, this may be true,
        I can’t deny it all,
        But Lord Arlen’s gone to consecrate
        King Henry at Whitehall.

        (Matty Groves, Child ballad.)

        And more to the point, what you can’t deny is that Federer is the only player to have beaten Djokovic this year – in a match which ranks alongside the final which we have just seen.

        Rich.

      • Posted Jul 4, 2011 at 3:17 AM | Permalink | Reply

        I agree with you. What’s so fascinating, is that just when you think Nadal is going to dominate the field, you get a player that can beat him on his own weapons. You saw Nadal struggling with his game plan. How can I hurt Djokovic? He didn’t find the answer yesterday and started to make unusual errors.

        • Steve McIntyre
          Posted Jul 4, 2011 at 6:57 AM | Permalink

          I agree. And just when Nadal was about to be crowned, the new “greatest”. The other guy that is in the mix is del Potro. Both Djokovic and del Potro with their two-handed backhands can defend Nadal’s serves. del Potro is tall enough that he’s less affected by the big hop as well and looked strong in his match against Nadal. It was too bad for Canadians that Raonic got injured. He had a third round match scheduled against Nadal and it would have been fun to see him play.

  9. Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 1:39 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I was only watching the final of the prettier gender,
    http://motls.blogspot.com/2011/07/petra-kvitova-wins-her-first-wimbledon.html

  10. Michael Moon
    Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 2:53 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Djokovich bounce bounce bounce bounce bounce…..
    Rafa, “Towel por favor!” repeat, repeat, repeat…

    Play already, Rod Laver seemed to be ready a little quicker.

    Great tennis, Djokovich is having a year like McEnroe ’84!

    • Wijnand
      Posted Jul 4, 2011 at 1:24 PM | Permalink | Reply

      U mean: Rafa, “Towel por favor!”, pull underbridges out of crack, repeat, repeat, repeat… ;-)

  11. Peter Whale
    Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 3:01 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Djkovic was absolutely superb in the first two sets. Nadal gave him a taste of defeat in the third and the forth was true grit by both players. Class for today’s game, but my heart is with the past with serve and volley which we only saw once.

    • Wijnand
      Posted Jul 4, 2011 at 1:33 PM | Permalink | Reply

      I LOVE those long rallies from behind the baseline! Love the simultaneous power and precision. Not to say serve volley isn’t exciting, that can be great to watch as well!

  12. Peter Whale
    Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 3:04 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Sorry meant fourth, may the forth be with you.

  13. Vorlath
    Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 3:28 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I was hoping for Nadal to pull through, but he hasn’t won a single match against Djokovic all year. Thought Nadal gave away the first set too easy. Couple mistakes and that was it. I like Djokovic though, so I’m happy for him.

  14. Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 3:38 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Steve, what is it with you and rackets? Or is it racquets?

    ;p

  15. See - owe to Rich
    Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 3:40 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Perhaps the oddest thing was that one always used to think of Nadal as the supreme competitor on break points. Yet in this match Djokovic converted every (?) break point he held, and saved a few on his own serve.

    Rich.

  16. Jimmy Haigh
    Posted Jul 3, 2011 at 9:24 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Being Scottish I was obviously hoping for a Murray win but he’s not quite good enough. He gave Nadal a bit of a scare but couldn’t keep it up. Djokovic’s play has reached a new level this year and I don’t see anyone in the same league.

    Good luck next year Andy!

  17. Chris Korvin
    Posted Jul 4, 2011 at 3:44 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Whats all that immensely tedious bouncing of the ball about? Can anyone of you enthusiasts enlighten me ?

    • Craig Bear
      Posted Jul 4, 2011 at 9:11 AM | Permalink | Reply

      It’s called intimidation. He used to be A lot worse.

    • Vorlath
      Posted Jul 4, 2011 at 5:17 PM | Permalink | Reply

      Between points, you’re only supposed to get 20 seconds. Djokovic goes to the line and starts bouncing the ball. The chair umpires usually let you go beyond 20 seconds if it looks like you’re about to serve. They rarely call you on it. So Djokovich uses this to get more time. He used to bounce it 20 times, but started to get warnings. Now he bounces it about 10 times. In the third and fourth set, he was going above 15 bounces. But don’t think he’s the only player that does cheap trick. Nadal is quite the a-hole too. He makes everyone wait before the match when they come out because the higher ranked player has to go out first. After the match, he often does the same thing just to tick the other player off (though most tournaments don’t have rules for when you can leave). Just to give you an idea, he often makes the other player wait 5 to 15 minutes before the match. He couldn’t do it to Federer for the longest time. But now he gets to do it to everybody… though he has just lost the #1 title, but I’m sure he’ll get it again.

  18. Alexander K
    Posted Jul 4, 2011 at 4:07 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Yep! Brilliant tennis, brilliant tournament, the athleticism seems to go up a tiny notch every year for both genders but I do agree with some critics that the screaming from some female competitors is unnerving and a bit OTT.
    The speed of the top doubles matches was almost beyond the limits of my eyesight!
    The entire tournament makes the cost of a TV licence in the UK worthwhile on its own, in my opinion.

  19. pesadia
    Posted Jul 4, 2011 at 5:27 AM | Permalink | Reply

    It takes two great players to make a great match.
    Breathtaking rallies, wonderful athletics from both players.
    The combination of power and grace was astounding.

  20. David Anderson
    Posted Jul 4, 2011 at 8:38 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Time for an OT?

    Multiple studies show those who express skepticism tend to be more knowledgeable and better analytic thinkers. How to twist this inconvenient result to your advantage?

    “This is bad, bad news for anyone who thinks that better math and science education will help us solve our problems on climate change ….. it provides a kind of uber-explanation for climate skeptic and denier behavior”

    http://bit.ly/lpB0J8

    The fact that he even tried just further supports the contention.

  21. Craig Bear
    Posted Jul 4, 2011 at 9:10 AM | Permalink | Reply

    It was good to see Bernard Tomic destroy and show some brilliance. I say next year he is a certain threat.

  22. Posted Jul 4, 2011 at 2:20 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Monty Python always have a relevant skit.

  23. Robin Edwards
    Posted Jul 4, 2011 at 3:52 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Did anyone follow the Tomic match with Djokovitch? This young guy is something to contemplate. He gave Novak quite a bit to think about. A future champion, in my opinion.

  24. Michael Jennings
    Posted Jul 5, 2011 at 6:48 AM | Permalink | Reply

    A brilliant match between two highly skilled and well conditioned athletes which was a joy to watch. There is now no question Djokovik is the worlds top player. I guess you could say he is no djoke?

  25. Alan
    Posted Jul 5, 2011 at 9:41 AM | Permalink | Reply

    He is no djoke but he is @DjokerNole on Twitter and quite entertaining.

  26. Marlowe Johnson
    Posted Jul 5, 2011 at 2:23 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Was anyone else confused by Novak’s reluctance to serve and volley until the second last point? For the longest time he allowed Nadal to passively chip back his serve with deep/slow slices without any fear of reprisal…

    I agree with others that both Rafa and Nole push the limits of sportsmanship with their delay tactics, in much the same way that many women do with grunting. (Reminds me of the story about Connors/Gilbert where Connors intentionally prolonged an argument with the umpire so that Gilbert would get cold). One of the things that makes Fed so great IMO is that he doesn’t do any of these things…

  27. Monopole
    Posted Jul 5, 2011 at 10:01 PM | Permalink | Reply

    I also enjoyed the tennis but the continual grunting is distracting to say the least. The women are worse in this respect than the men. (I have no issue with grunting in some other activities but if I go there this comment will be snipped). I can’t pinpoint when grunting in tennis began but it sure wasn’t that much of an issue when I watched the likes of Laver and Newcombe in the 60′s and 70′s. Why do they have to do it?

  28. Marlowe Johnson
    Posted Jul 6, 2011 at 9:14 AM | Permalink | Reply

    IIRC it started with Seles…

  29. biddyb
    Posted Jul 6, 2011 at 1:24 PM | Permalink | Reply

    Fantastic match, although distraught that Rafa lost. He just didn’t seem able to find any rythem and the usual accuracy of his shots seemed to have deserted him, probably because of the pressure from Novak.

    Just to make you all green, we have got tickets for the Olympic men’s final next year (at Wimbledon)- yahoo – a great day out to look forward to.

    Monopole – I think it was Seles too. I hope she wasn’t stabbed in the shoulder because of it or some of the girlies are in for trouble. Mind you, after watching a couple of their matches and the shrill shrieking that goes on, I would willingly have murdered them. If you let it get to you in a match it must completely destroy your concentration. It isn’t necessary and should be stopped. If they can learn to change their grip/serves/forhand/backhand/volley/smash, they sure as hell can learn to stop making a noise. It is possible to exhale quietly.

  30. Edim
    Posted Jul 7, 2011 at 11:18 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Djoković is in the zone. Very focused, much fitter (more training, new diet) and amazing emotional stability.

  31. Alex Heyworth
    Posted Jul 8, 2011 at 8:13 AM | Permalink | Reply

    Definitely from the upper rank of Wimbledon finals, but not quite up there with the very best. In my time of watching Wimbledon (going back to before Bjorn Borg came on the scene) Pete Sampras has been the supreme player, although only by a whisker from Federer. Sampras’s performance to win the 1999 final in straight sets was perhaps the highlight of his career, and took tennis to an exalted plane. To quote from the article on the Wimbledon website: “The 1999 final against Andre Agassi was possibly the greatest display of grass court tennis that Wimbledon has ever seen. Sampras had stumbled around the circuit for the first half of the year, winning nothing and looking miserable but then he went through that Lazarus moment as he returned to the grass. He won at Queen’s and then began his campaign for The Championships.

    Round by round he gathered momentum until he was ready for Agassi. His fellow American had just won the French Open, he was the story of the moment having hauled himself back from a ranking of 141 and reinvented himself as a champion. Agassi was at his peak. And in the first set he had the temerity to manufacture three break points on the Sampras serve.

    That was it. That was the moment Sampras moved from champion to genius. He snatched back the break points and then took off. For a couple of minutes Agassi shook his head and tried to work out what had happened but by then the first set was gone and he was a break down in the second. It was not that Agassi was playing badly, it was just that Sampras was sublime.

    “Today he walked on water,” Agassi said later. Sampras said simply: “Sometimes I surprise myself.” He ended the match on a second service ace – naturally.”

    IIRC, Agassi was also quoted as saying he had played the best tennis of his life in this match – Sampras was simply better.

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