Sorry, folks, I went to bed after the first tiebreak of Nole vs. Fed, slept soundly, woke up, brushed teeth and waited calmly until Fritters – he’s the hardy one – told me the score.
In case you missed it: Novak Djokovic beat Roger Federer in the 2011 Australian Open semifinals 7-6, 7-5, 6-4.
I went to bed with a very clear idea of who the winner would be. It struck me as a match of equals – both guys capable of transcendent, aggressive play and both sure that they belonged in the final. But when the tiebreak tipped in Novak’s favor, he was revealed as the bolder, braver and more sure player on Rod Laver Arena. (Of course, when it gets to this stage in a tournament, I always assume Roger’s going to lose – it’s the jinx-obsessed Fedophile in me.)
I feel like Roger summed it up best:
I was always going to be there physically and mentally. That’s what I was going to try to test with Novak tonight , but I just couldn’t do it. He snuck out on me on a few occasions. My bad a few times; his great play a sometimes. It was just bad combination for me tonight.
Nole wouldn’t be out-manned. Roger couldn’t sink his battleship. As well as Murray and Ferrer are playing, Djokovic is working the Major Mojo this tournament and I’d be shocked if he didn’t win it.
Good for Nole. But what’s a Fed Fan to do? You have to go way back to 2003 – before Rog won his first Wimbledon title – to find a time when he wasn’t reigning champ of at least one Major tournament. It’s like Santa ditching the sleigh and mailing Christmas cards. It’s just not right. With this, Justine’s retirement, Rafa and Venus’s body issues, Serena’s no-show, and Sharapova’s mediocrity, well it’s not so much the Happy Slam as the Uneasy Slam. As in, what’s happening to my happy little tennis family?
Q. Todd Woodbridge after the match was sort of suggesting that with Rafa injured and you out now that it was something of a passing of the torch.
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I mean, they say that very quickly, so…
Let’s talk in six months again.
I’ll take you up on that, Rog.
But seriously, we could do a heck of a lot worse that a Djokovic vs. Murray final. Or Djokovic vs. Ferrer – I dare you not to care for the speedy Spaniard after reading this feel good article, or watching this video (yeah, there’s a really cute kid in it, too.)
Who are you rooting for in the finals?