It’s late and I just finished watching the World Tour Finals final between Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer, which Nole won 7-6 (6), 7-5 (or 96 points to Roger’s 95, if you prefer). I somehow managed to avoid the results all day long and, even more impressive for a nervous Nellie like myself, watch the full match recording without being tempted to hit fast forward.
For a Fed fanatic, I have surprisingly mild emotions about this result. I should be disappointed, or at least peeved, that Roger didn’t take advantage of his chances – up a break in both sets, serving for the second and losing it up 40 – 15! What the heck, Rog, isn’t this your surface, your crowd, your big, beribboned trophy? But I just cant work myself into a state about it. The match was too exciting, too razor sharp, too ” let’s let it all hang out” to merit my scorn. All I really want to say is: “Well done, guys!”
It’s funny, I left this match with the feeling that I had just witnessed an amazingly talented young upstart challenge a level headed veteran, but with Roger playing the role of ingenue. That can’t be a bad thing, can it? I imagine Roger hitting the practice courts in Dubai this off season with an adolescent fervor that Dolgopolov or Tomic couldn’t match on their most rabid days.
As for Novak Djokovic, I can only agree with Roger’s assessment from the runner’s up speech: “Amazing year, amazing tournament and amazing match.”
Yep. And even more impressive to me is that Novak emerged from this intense season as the best player of the year after his seriously scary, virtually unbeatable 2011. If he made it look superhuman last year, this year he made it look, well, normal.
So no matter where you place your affections, I think you can leave this tournament content (even Rafa fans will be cheered by his recent Facebook update). It was a wonderful WTF and a thrilling final. For Nole and Rog, they end the year with fat checks and vacations. For the rest of us, the feeling that all is well in the tennis world.