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Toronto Last Call 08/15/2010 - 11:30 AM

103387895 [[Pete is on vacation from today until Wednesday, the 18th. He'll be back with a post on Thursday.]]

By Jackie Roe, TW Contributing Writer


Hey there, TWibe. Are you pumped for today's final? I'll be in attendance at Federer-Murray in Toronto, then heading straight to Cincinnati for more live tennis action. Stay tuned to TW for my daily reports in the Queen City.

Before I preview today's final, I thought I'd give you a run-down of all that's happened here since I posted last (in Friday's Deuce Club):

Friday, 8/13

(Unfortunately, I spent much of the afternoon in the press room, wrapping up the DC, so I didn't catch all of the action. Apologies for the gaps in match coverage.)

Centre Court for Murray-Nalbandian. Rooting (silently, of course) for Nalbandian but good to see Muzz playing so cleanly and not getting down on himself.

Caught the beginning of Nadal-Kohlschreiber. Not surprised about Rafa's slow start - not the first time that's happened. Left shortly after it started to write so I can't say how either guy played. Check out Steve's post on the match for more.

Murray presser. When I first attended one of these, back in Cincinnati, my most salient impression was how nervous he was. Still the case: Poor eye contact, hands in hoodie pockets, serious. Called the match one of the best he's played all year.

Nalbandian presser. Demeanor not altogether different from the last one, despite the different results. Still open, easy-going. Said he feels tired, but would be fine in a few days. Arrived to the ball more slowly because of the fatigue.

Federer-Berdych.

  • Missed the first set as I was still in the press room. Expected it to be more competitive at the outset, but not so. Beth left this message for me in the DC, which is funny in retrospect: "If you don't hurry out there, Jackie, Federer is gonna be done. He is on a mission, from what it looks like via scoreboard."
  • Intense. Fed with emphatic "Come on!" in the second set.
  • Berd didn't look 100% physically. Movement a little labored, maybe?
  • Loads of crowd support for Berd in the second set. Fans wanted more tennis!
  • Described the last game of the second set - when Berd broke to even up the match - as "odd." Fed double-faulted twice, then the awful shank at set point. Happened in the blink of an eye; it was like an accelerated version of his typical mid-match walkabout (i.e. going to Mirka Land).
  • Third set - both guys beating the felt off the ball.
  • When Berd hits his stride and has his mojo/confidence flowing, he's intimidating. Develops almost a swagger, actually feels like he belongs. Gone are the days when you trusted he'd collapse in any pressure-packed situation. (Later in the third set, I added a "Okay, maybe not.")
  • Obvious how much this match means to Fed. Another big "Come on!" to go up 0-40 on Berd's serve at 1-1 in the 3rd. Only to squander them all, as is typical for Fed.
  • The game at 5-3 was when all hell started to break loose. Waves of applause for Fed, urging him to break. Every point won by Fed met by deafening applause and a standing ovation.
  • Then my notes just became a mess. This is what I have: Heart attack! Fed BP. Wasted. Another. Wasted. And another. Wasted. And another. CONVERTS! This place is a madhouse.
  • The unruly crowd surprised me. Isn't impoliteness a felony in Canada," as Codge said? I hated when the guy yelled, "Berdych, are you nervous?" in a mocking tone. At least it only seemed to fire him up. Saw on Twitter that the crowd's antics were obvious on TV. What did you guys think? (There was one funny moment, though. When Lars Graff said "Thank you" to quiet the crowd, a guy called out, "You're welcome!" There was so much laughter that Berd had to step off the service line.)
  • I realized this was the most nervous I'd ever been watching live tennis.
Met up with Sher again - and met Grant for the first time! We didn't get to chat much since I was about to fall over from starvation, unfortunately.

Federer presser. Re: that "odd" game, Fed said the transition from day to night was rough. Hmm. Appeared a tad irritated, but maybe he was just tired.

I missed Berdy's presser so I could finally get food. But Mariya at TalkAboutTennis.com said that it was tough to sit through, as he was almost beside himself with disappointment.

Saturday, 8/14

Cermak/Mertinak vs. Benneteau/Llodra on Centre.
  • Bendra are uncannily in sync with one another. Was easy capturing them on camera since they seemed to never be more than a few feet away from each other, mirroring the other's movements.
  • Cermak/Mertinak are like twins, too. When receiving, they act out the same routine in unison (take a few steps, kick last leg, step back).
  • It's been said countless times but I'll repeat it again anyway - live dubs is incredible. Exciting, engaging, fun.
  • Shallow observation of the match: I wish all dubs pairs dressed in the same outfits, like Bendra.
Nadal-Murray up.
  • Whenever I watch Rafa, I catch myself literally gasping at his shots. I don't know that I do that with anyone else.
  • From the very beginning, Rafa didn't look like himself ... playing too passively.
  • Murray looked focused, dialed in, and even postive. None of the dour/whiny stuff we saw in the Monfils match. Served increasingly better as the set went on.
  • At 4-4 in the second set, it started to sprinkle; fortunately, the match ended shortly thereafter.
  • Rafa gave a look of resignation after a wind-induced UFE at 5-4 in the second. I can't remember the last time I saw that kind of a look from him.
Murray presser. He looked more relaxed than he did yesterday, but still far from comfortable. Speech is monotone, slow, measured. (I guess I'd appear that way, too, if I had to reckon with the British press.) Said he actually likes being aggressive and more offensive - I wish he'd do that more often!

Nadal presser. Looked great in green, came in munching on a snack. Clearly not too bent out of shape over the loss. Called his serve the "worst thing in [his] game today" and noted that he didn't practice that particular part of his game much because that's how he injured his abs last year. Also said that he was slower than usual and that he needs to improve his backhand, since he had to "think too much" when playing those shots during the match. When asked how he's feeling now vs. a year ago, he responded with "I never like comparations." Perfect response

Federer-Djokovic next.
  • The crowd energy was off the charts before the first ball was even played.
  • Nole was clearly edgy at the start; changed his racquet after his first service game (was broken).
  • Nole already looked spent by the fifth game. Atrocious serving. (Remember how he served back in '08? My, how things have changed.)
  • Confident and crisp Fed. Nole trying to be more aggressive on the return but generally looked sluggish, defeated, pained. Couldn't buy a first serve.
  • Momentum shift in the second, with the crowd trying to pump up Nole. It worked.
  • Noticed that Fed wasn't as expressive today as he was yesterday. No loud "Come on"s (until late in the third). Did the Berd match affect him more emotionally? Psychologically? Or perhaps not ... just a different match, different conditions, different crowd.
  • After Fed squandered a boatload of break point opportunities, I scribbled down, "Fed's gonna get broken now, huh." What do you know, I was right. The one time I didn't want to be.
  • Fed's little exhalation before serves is much more apparent in real life than on TV. Which also makes it more disconcerting.
  • "The fat lady is still warming up her pipes." I wrote that when Nole broke back at 2-4. Kind of sums up that last set.
  • Overall, it wasn't a great match, quality-wise. Still, the drama of the third set was worth the price of admission.
Djokovic presser.
  • This may have been my very first Nole presser, at any tournament. Anxious to see him in that context in real life.
  • Looked very "king of the castle" in the chair, with both arms on the arm rests and legs spread apart.
  • Confident speaker. Articulate. Thoughtful analysis of the match and his/Fed's games. Likable. Charismatic. Not negative, like I had expected after the loss.
  • Was unsatisfied with all of the unforced errors but overall felt that the tournament was a success.
Federer presser.
  • Re: Murray, knew from the first time he played him in Bangkok, he'd be one of the best in the world.
  • What did Nole say to Fed at the net? That he should've won earlier! Fed described Nole as a"good sport."
  • Fed was asked about how his relationship with Annacone was going. His response: "It's very romantic." Quote of the tournament. (His real answer was that he's taking it week by week, that Annacone might not be in Cincy since Severin will be there.)

And now we've arrived at the final, between Federer and Murray. My thoughts:

  • Muzz has shown fine form, particularly in his last two matches. He described both as being one of the best he's played all year. Fatigue won't be a problem.
  • Fed showed some rust early but winning two tough 3-setters in a row should do wonders for his confidence. Particularly the victory over Berd, who's had his number. Still, have these matches taken their toll? Even Fed alluded to this in his presser last night, saying, "Hopefully I won't be too banged up." Even if that's the case, this Fed fan is glad he got the match play.
  • Looking forward to a competitive match. Murray leads the H2H at 6-5, but Fed took their last three matches. I don't have a clue what the outcome will be, but I'm just glad I get to witness it.

This is where you should be to call the Toronto final. Enjoy it, guys! (I'm flying to Cincy this evening, and will be posting from there the next few days. Make sure to check out my reports here, and for some added coverage, follow me on Twitter, @JackieRoe.)


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Posted by Or 08/15/2010 at 11:45 AM

Great report, Jackie!

I too worry about Roger's fitness for tonight. Pity this isn't two hours later. How is the weather holding up there?

Posted by Jackie 08/15/2010 at 12:01 PM

Thanks, Or!

TWibe, this is your finals post. Get outta the DC (never thought you'd hear me say that, eh?)!

Posted by ladyjulia 08/15/2010 at 12:09 PM

Thanks Jackie...for the awesome report! Glad u attended Fed-Berdy live..that was some exciting match!

I don't think Fed has many chances to win today...depending on # of shanks, DFs and netted volleys...Muzz is in great form and is probably going to play aggressive today. Still going to sit and watch.

Posted by Mike 08/15/2010 at 12:09 PM

The Final is at 1:30PM EST ... unfortunately, same day tape won't air on ESPN2 until 3. :P

You should see a stream available @ 1:30 here - http://www.livescorehunter.com/Livescores/Livescore-Tennis.html

Posted by CL/Hold the Foam 08/15/2010 at 12:11 PM

yeah - what's the weather? Fed's comment about not seeing the ball well during the transition from dusk/to full artificial light, which is when the 2 DFs came, really jumped out at me and made me think immediately of mici who always was doubtful of Fed's eyesight.

Loved the "very romantic" comment. JeeJee

Not surprised at Novak's 'king o the hill' ease. Partly, I think it is the entertainer in him and partly it at least seems like he has been the center of his family's orbit for a while now, so lese majeste comes easy to him.

Great reports Jackie - I am SO wicked jealous of you.

Posted by Mike 08/15/2010 at 12:12 PM

I wouldn't count Fed out ... we've seen Fred here and there a few times this week, but just enough TMF on the big points to make it to the Finals. ;)

Posted by antoinette 08/15/2010 at 12:15 PM

My prediction.....Pinky and the Brain in 3 then unto Cincy where the masterplan will continue to unfold. You heard it hear first...Pinky for President of the World!!!

Posted by Anne 08/15/2010 at 12:16 PM

Jackie (or anyone else in the know), do you have any idea what session Rog/Rafa will play their 1st round in Cincy? Thinking of trekking out thereso the kids can see the best in the world up close!

Posted by CL/Hold the Foam 08/15/2010 at 12:17 PM

yeah- physically I think Fed it going to be hurtin' a bit today whereas Muzz will be feeling fine. As long as Fed doesn't get blown off the court, its still a good tournament for him. Making the final after a long lay off isn't too shabby- even by his standards.

And even in saying that, I am not writing him off....if TMF shows up today, then all bets are off. Just being both realistic and appreciative of what he has accomplished so far.

***off to check weather forecast***

Posted by TripleF(FedFanForever): Not Fuchsia! Pink it is. 08/15/2010 at 12:19 PM

Jackie

Nice wrap up. Enjoy reading it. Brought back a lot of things...I have no idea how to comprehend or digest (never mind relish) Fed's matches when it is Live. They always were a blur...

Great job. Thanks.

Posted by CL/Hold the Foam 08/15/2010 at 12:22 PM

So Toronto - currently overcast with a 40% chance of showers this afternoon. Something called the "Humidex" in effect. I dunno exactly what that is, but it must be important because it is in red. Wild guess it has something to do with high humidity levels. ;-). A rain delay or 2 might help Fed. Or not.

Posted by CL/Hold the Foam 08/15/2010 at 12:23 PM

I hope the Cincy organizers give Fed a Wed. start - would help a lot, I think.

Posted by Anne 08/15/2010 at 12:27 PM

Thanks CL. Did Rog start on Tues night this week? Since Rog and Rafa are on the same side of the draw this week, guessing they'll be playing on the same day, right?

Posted by TripleF(FedFanForever): Not Fuchsia! Pink it is. 08/15/2010 at 12:28 PM

ESPN doing a Tape Delay? WTF?

Posted by Tim (Outlaw the Moonpie!) 08/15/2010 at 12:31 PM

gee Fed finished at 10 30 at night and then has to play again at 1 30?? nice...

Posted by Tim (Outlaw the Moonpie!) 08/15/2010 at 12:32 PM

if Fed doesnt get a Wednesday start, he should drop out of the tournament, period... Monday is a travel day, no rest, and then a match Tuesday? no way...

Posted by Red 1.7.17.287⁺ = Legacy Solidified 08/15/2010 at 12:32 PM

Excellent synopsis Jackie.
Here's hoping the tennis Gods smile upon Fed today.
Wont be unhappy if Andy takes it though.

Posted by Nam1 08/15/2010 at 12:34 PM

I think Nadal said in his post match presser he plays on Wedenesday and Fed is in his half so maybe Fed plays on Wednesady as well.

Posted by Tim (Outlaw the Moonpie!) 08/15/2010 at 12:34 PM

the bottom line is, both Murray and Fed can walk away from Toronto very very happy...huge lifts to their confidence, big wins, lots of match play, its all good, i dont see a loser today really, though Murray certainly should have an edge with all the extra rest and short matches...but grandpa needed the match play and he got it ...

had NO idea the match was on tape delay, uber lame...

Posted by Nam1 08/15/2010 at 12:36 PM

well, it was supposed to rain this afternoon in Toronto but the clouds have gone and it is a hot sunny humid afternoon.

Posted by Anne 08/15/2010 at 12:38 PM

Thanks for the input, Tim/Nam. Thinking one will play during the day, one @ night.

Posted by Nam1 08/15/2010 at 12:39 PM

It does feel very "heavy"; I dont envy anyone playing a match but Federer is one of the fittest guys on the tour; why the doom and gloom about his tiredness level?

Posted by CL/Hold the Foam 08/15/2010 at 12:40 PM

Ok USA peeps - here are the ESPN customer complaints contacts again:

888-549-3776. We are open 8:00 a.m. to 1:00 a.m. ET, seven days a week.

https://r.espn.go.com/members/contact/index

I recommend the phone line. Press #3 on the menu and you get a real person.

According to my guide, what ESPN2 is showing instead of tennis is, I kid you not, LIVE from Madison Sq. Garden:

Nike World Festival Basketball: France at the USA. oy. But its basketball and basketball pas the bills.

Posted by Tim (Outlaw the Moonpie!) 08/15/2010 at 12:41 PM

well just reality, Fed is 29 and an old duffer, hes' gonna be tired but again, nonetheless, a great week for him....

Posted by CL/Hold the Foam 08/15/2010 at 12:42 PM

Rats! lost the e-mail contact. Maybe Vetmama or MA still has it. Sorry 'bout that.

Posted by ladyjulia 08/15/2010 at 12:50 PM

Nam1,

Its not often that Fed says something like "I hope I am not going to be too banged up tomorrow"..at 10 pm in the night.

Though he says he is used to it...but he's 29. He isn't 24 anymore. I am not an athelete but I can't recover from late-nights at 30 like I could do at the age of 25. I could work much longer during the night and feel fresh the next day at the age of 25. These days...not so easy.

But its his fault anyway, the match could have been over at 8.30 pm. Even if he had finished at 8.30 pm, I think he would have lost anyway since Murray is totally in-form.
It is what it is.

Posted by linex 08/15/2010 at 12:58 PM

Hi everyone. Thanks Jackie for your post and all the info you provided us with. I hope we get to see a good match I root for Roger today but if Andy earns the win good for him. I am already thinking in Cinci, my favourite Nalbi got a tough draw there he plays Ivan Lubijic and if he wins Isner and if he wins Nole ... Ivan has had David's number in the past I think that he won the last 2 or 3 matches against him. The good thing is that Jackie told us that he still is in a good mood ...

I would like to watch Clijsters Sharapova but to do it I will have to do it on my computer screen as they do not show wta matches on tv in Uruguay except in the grand slam context.

Posted by scoreboarding 08/15/2010 at 01:00 PM

Ladyjulia,
Andy was in form yesterday but that doesn't necessarily mean that's what we are going to see today. Murray is quite an emotional player and if he gets in his 'cranky' mode, his serve will be the first thing to go. It may well be that Fed is tired but I still think that Murray is far from a foregone conclusion.

Posted by scoreboarding 08/15/2010 at 01:02 PM

that should have been: Murray winning is far from a foregone conclusion-

Posted by Ruth 08/15/2010 at 01:02 PM

Thanks for the reports, Jackie. And I agree that seeing good doubles matches in person is just amazing -- one of the things I look forward to at the USO every year. Like you, I rather like the matching outfits for the doubles teams (saw Mirnyi and Bhupathi looking terrific in theirs in some pix on the yahoo tennis slideshow yesterday). I was baffled when some at TW said that there was something "weird" about the Bryans' wearing matching outfits; quite a few other pairs do, especially when they share sponsors.

I remember Tsonga and other players requesting -- and not getting -- TUESDAY starts when they appeared in the Sunday final of a tourney that was even farther from their next tourney than Cincy is from Toronto. So, a Wednesday start for Roger might not...oh, forgot he is Roger Federer! Let's see what happens. :-)

Re your question about the Toronto crowd last night, I missed seeing a lot of the match, but my reading of various tennis sites and match reports indicates that the behavior of SOME in the crowd was rather disappointing. Just read Cronin's report about someone shouting out "This is Roger's tournament" at a crucial moment, and other such nonsense. Too bad.

I'll have to scold my Canadian cousins about it. I usually spend most of my tennis-talk-time with them commiserating with them about yet another witdrawal by Venus and Serena from some Canadian tourney. V&S really should give a free exhibition in Canada for all the folk who have bought tickets counting on their appearance during the last decade, only to be disappointed. But how would one determine who those people are????

Posted by ladyjulia 08/15/2010 at 01:06 PM

scoreboarding.

True..if Fed can do something in the first 15 to 20 mon to rile up Muzz so that Muzz retreats to his old patterns, the match will be Fed's.

Still..Muzz's form has been encouraging lately..he also said in his presser yesterday that he knows he has to play aggressive today. He will also be motivated for revenge. Apparently, the AO final took a lot out of him mentally...I don't think he will pass up this opportunity that he has today. I think he will manage to keep focused and get the job done.

Posted by Andrew 08/15/2010 at 01:07 PM

Afternoon, all.

Gosh, lots of Federer fans in pre-emptive "I hope I don't get disappointed" mode today. I wouldn't read too much into the "banged up" comment. Federer was carrying a sore back and thigh into the QF at Wimbledon but said he felt perfect after the Melzer match: it's possible he's picked up a nick, but he's played a few finals at this level: he had the evening match before Madrid F 2009, as I recall.

It'll come down to whoplays better on the day. Murray has outfoxed Federer in the past (IW SF 2009, Madrid SF 2008, for example). And Federer has had his own moments.

I'm at my parents' house, happily anticipating a cracking match - not out in a hotel reception area at 2:30am squinting at a flickering computer screen.

Posted by Syd 08/15/2010 at 01:07 PM

Yeh, Ruth, I was surprised by the Torontonian crowd, usually such paragons of virtue. ;)

Posted by antoinette 08/15/2010 at 01:09 PM

I think Murray may have the edge physically him being fresher and all that, but Federer has changed the dynamic between him and Murray in their matches and I think it will be a huge mental hurdle for Murray to maintain his form against. I think he may want it too much and it can make him revert to his uber passive mode or conversely try to be too aggressive. For Federer he does not have to make any mental adjustments to beat Murray, his usual game if executed well is good enough to beat Murray and both Federer and Murray know that. I see the match as a 50/50 proposition with Murray having a slight edge.

That being said....Go Pinky!!!!

Posted by zenggi 08/15/2010 at 01:10 PM

Jackie,
Thank you so much for your report. Good perception on body language! :)

Also checking the weather. Right now is 27 C and it feels like 38 C. Humidity 80%. Ouch!

I have faith on Pierre's program regarding fitness. Roger follows his instructions to the letter.

Thank you also to wilson75 for posting that link with Annacone on the DC thread. The 10-day test has been a success despite what the result today will be.

Posted by Ross (FOE) 08/15/2010 at 01:11 PM

It looks like ESPN3.com will have the final at 1:30.

Posted by CL/Hold the Foam 08/15/2010 at 01:11 PM

Lady J - exactly right. If Fed is feeling a bit fatigued it is his own fault for getting himself involved in such long match in the first place. One of his hallmarks, and one of the reasons for his great consistency, has moving through matches efficiently. He can go to the mat when he has to, i.e. FO 09, but for the most part, even if he wasn't bageling or breadsticking people, he was getting through in 2 sets in Master and 3 in slams. And that meant he usually was fine for the finals. So, physician heal thyself.

Posted by ladyjulia 08/15/2010 at 01:11 PM

Ruth,

Someone also shouted out "Roger is gay" during the match.

These things cannot be controlled in my opinion.

Posted by scoreboarding 08/15/2010 at 01:12 PM

Ladyjulia,

To me this is somewhat similar to AO for Murray, he goes into the final confident after playing well against Rafa. The problem is that Fed and Rafa are totally different players and tennis is basically about matchups. I believe even a 'tired' Fed will be able to attack Andy's second serve in a way Rafa couldn't.
Like Andrew, I'm hoping for an exciting and competitive match but I'm expecting Fed to come out victorious :)

Posted by Jackie 08/15/2010 at 01:13 PM

Thanks for the comments, guys!

Heading out shortly. Enjoy the match!

Posted by crazyone 08/15/2010 at 01:15 PM

right, CL. It's not like Djokovic and Berdych started off their matches playing at a dazzlingly high level. Fed had a decent chance to get both done in two, but blew it.

Posted by Kristy 08/15/2010 at 01:15 PM

CL, I did it. I called ESPN and complained about the tape delay. Do you think if they get enough calls by 1:30, they'd show it live?

Posted by crazyone 08/15/2010 at 01:16 PM

oh and Jackie, great report! I'm jealous, not just because of the matches you watched, but because you got to meet Sher and Grant (Grant!!!).

Posted by ladyjulia 08/15/2010 at 01:16 PM

scoreboarding,

Let's see..

Posted by CL/Hold the Foam 08/15/2010 at 01:17 PM

Andrew- say hi to your father...who, IIRC, posted here a couple of times. I wish you had taken a picture of yourself in the hotel lobby...squinting at that screen. People probably thought you were a high roller watching the stock trading in Asia. Or just a major loon.

Well it is possible that if Muzz is so determined NOT to repeat mistakes of the past and comes out with guns blazing and misses a few, he MIGHT retreat into passive mode. But Fed could well do the same. (Oh, where is that shock collar!) Muzz will munch on Fed's second serve though so Fed better have the first serve fully engaged.

Posted by wilson75 08/15/2010 at 01:20 PM

Murray was aggressive against Nalbandian and Nadal because these are 2 players that allow him to be aggressive. I think he has less of a chance to be so against Federer, hence he's goes back to being defensive. That being said, I have no idea who is going to win today but I'm hoping for a Federer victory.

Posted by CL/Hold the Foam 08/15/2010 at 01:21 PM

kristy - nope- they are already showing basketball. But what we are doing is laying the ground work for future decisions. They are not 100% sure tennis fans even exist. So the more we contact them, whether with complaints, like today, or praise, like the other night for hanging in with the Fed/Byrdy match even though they had boxing scheduled, the better.

Posted by scoreboarding 08/15/2010 at 01:22 PM

Oh I too forgot to thank Jackie for the great report.

Yup, soon enough we'll see whose second serve gets to be feasted on the most!

Posted by crazyone 08/15/2010 at 01:23 PM

I think Murray can be aggressive against Federer, but I think he generally assumes that a more defensive style of play will win him the match against Federer, since that's what worked in Dubai and Indian Wells...but if Fed's sharp like he was in the AO it's an entirely ineffectual strategy.

Posted by CL/Hold the Foam 08/15/2010 at 01:24 PM

wislon - and, somewhat due to fatigue, I think, Nalby was missing a lot of shots that he was making in his earlier matches.Rafa made an unusually high number of UFEs as well. Muzz won't be fatigued, but he might be nervous. But Fed definitely needs to cut down on HIS UFEs. 43 last night! Yikes!!!

Posted by Matt Zemek 08/15/2010 at 01:25 PM

What I've been happy about has been Fed's sportsmanship. He acknowledged he was lucky after Berdych and said last night that Nole "showed greatness" on the court. Having high standards for the man who is (still, despite Rafa's on-court preeminence) the global ambassador for tennis, I just hope Roger can be as gracious in defeat as in victory.

Fed's already had a successful tournament here in Toronto. I fully expect Murray to clean his clock. The Scot is a far more consistent player right now, aided by getting in some work in Los Angeles whereas Fed came to Canada rusty. It's all about peaking for the Open in New York.

Tim, Fed needs to go to Cincy, no questions asked. I think he'll get the Wednesday start, but even if he doesn't, a Tuesday match would be followed by an off-day on Wednesday before the R-16s on Thursday. Plus, he needs to defend points in the attempt to secure the No. 2 seed in New York. The sport of tennis needs Roger and Rafa to meet in at least one US Open final before it's all said and done. If Roger's at No. 3, that can't happen.

Besides, Fed will have a full week to rest after Cincy, if not more (if he were to lose early, which is very possible). Plus, tasting the withering humidity would build up his fitness level, especially for the first week in New York, when it's often still quite hot.

Jackie:

You rock. Then again, that's not news. Enjoy one last dish of neapolitan ice cream, and wash it down with a cool, smooth, refreshing Fedrinka.

Posted by jewell - Make tea, not war. 08/15/2010 at 01:25 PM

*waves hello to everyone*

Lovely report, Jax! Can't wait for the Cincy ones. :)

I do think it's unfair I should get Murray frazzle as well as Rafa frazzle, LOL. Think it is a pretty good week for both guys whatever happens.

Posted by crazyone 08/15/2010 at 01:27 PM

Matt Zemek: if Fed is #3, there's still a 50% chance of them being in opposite halves, no?

Posted by Kristy 08/15/2010 at 01:28 PM

CL, right, thanks for reminding me to also praise ESPN when they extend coverage of a match till it ends (duh, but no, it's good.).

crazyone, I'm hoping Murray has finally rethought his passive style of play, not just with Rafa. He was so much more dynamic last night than he usually is.

Posted by Sherlock 08/15/2010 at 01:29 PM

"Gosh, lots of Federer fans in pre-emptive "I hope I don't get disappointed" mode today."

Indeed, Andrew. If a newbie to the sport walked into this blog, they'd think Fed will be lucky to not get a double breadstick. :)

Posted by Annie (Vamos Heavenly Creature) 08/15/2010 at 01:30 PM

Saw on the other thread that someone keeps referring to what he thinks is rafa's "false humility." I've read several articles about rafa and toni's relationship that explain, to me anyway, why rafa is like this. Everybody knows by now that toni was a tough task master and very stingy with praise. Recently I read a quote where rafa said "sometimes he would make me feel like I was worse than I really am." Of course I don't know why toni did this, probably to keep rafa hungry to improve, but it did result in a champion who has permanent 'doubt' about his abilities. So there you have his humility. None of it is "false" imo.

Also, tim's assertion that he can whine about a player or style of play as much as he wants (it's an open board and all that) but posters aren't allowed to direct their responses to him, is realy laughable. He generates the post that criticizes the player. Who else should we respond to? the player? He didn't write the post! Just like when pete writes something in one of his articles that folks disagree with. they post their reply to pete. So, anyone who dishes it out has to expect to get it dished back at them. There is nothing in the site rules against this. As long as no poster or group of fans is attacked personally.

Now that is the last I will say on this subject. In five minutes the final begins between Muzz and Fed. I'm pulling for Muzz. If he plays like he did yesterday, Fed will get blown off the court.

Jackie: loved your post! Glad you got to see rafa play live and 'gasp' at his shots!

Posted by scoreboarding 08/15/2010 at 01:33 PM

Roger and Murray on the court. It looks very cloudy, hopefully the rain won't be a factor.

Posted by Kristy 08/15/2010 at 01:33 PM

I don't know who I want to win. I hate seeing Fed lose. But Murray deserves a win. Bye for now! I'm watching at 3.

Posted by Flyer 08/15/2010 at 01:33 PM

Have no clue how Fed will play today - even without the late end last night - he's been up and down and down and up so much this week - flip a coin.

Just have to hope for the best......

All I want is for him to come out of the match fit and uninjured.

Come on Pink Panther - one last hunt!

Posted by TripleF(FedFanForever): Not Fuchsia! Pink it is. 08/15/2010 at 01:33 PM

Sherlock

I am not one of them maan. I want this Win big time. Goes a long way and tells a lot of things...

Posted by Matt Zemek 08/15/2010 at 01:35 PM

Crazyone:

Why leave it to chance when you can remove all doubt?

It could work out great for Fed - at No. 3, he could be placed in Djokovic's (bottom) half while Murray and Nadal are in the top half. That would be perfect.

But it's only a 50-50 shot connected to a blind draw.

Well, we gonna see.

Posted by Sherlock 08/15/2010 at 01:35 PM

My hatred of ESPN grows and grows. Idiots.

Posted by crazyone 08/15/2010 at 01:35 PM

Kristy: that may be the case, but I'm sure people said that after his match against Rafa at the AO. This is still the same guy who can get bagelled by Monfils...

Posted by scoreboarding 08/15/2010 at 01:37 PM

Umbreallas out and they're wiping the court. Players are not warming up yet.

Posted by crazyone 08/15/2010 at 01:37 PM

rain delay :(

Posted by TripleF(FedFanForever): Not Fuchsia! Pink it is. 08/15/2010 at 01:37 PM

If the rain does delay the start...hopefully ESPN2 will start it "live" at 3 as it says now.

Posted by jewell - Make tea, not war. 08/15/2010 at 01:39 PM

Rain...stupid stuff!

Posted by Jackie 08/15/2010 at 01:40 PM

UGHHHH, RAINNNNNN. Back in the press room. Scowling.

Flight leaves in the early evening, have to head out in a couple of hours. If I miss the whole thing, I'm gonna ... do something bad.

Posted by Nam1 08/15/2010 at 01:41 PM

oh no sprinkling here in TO and Fed not looking happy at all. they are mopping the copurt but the clouds are moving and more coming with dribs and drabs of sun between them.
Go MUzza!

Posted by Fangorina 08/15/2010 at 01:41 PM

Is it raining there? Maybe that is why my ESPN3 link won't open....

Posted by TripleF(FedFanForever): Not Fuchsia! Pink it is. 08/15/2010 at 01:41 PM

Such a strange way to dry the court as it is drizzling...shouldn't they cover it first?

Posted by Jackie 08/15/2010 at 01:42 PM

And another huge thank you for all of the support. It's been a blast, and I'm so happy to share the experience with you guys.

Posted by Nam1 08/15/2010 at 01:42 PM

players walking off with their stuff

Posted by chegu 08/15/2010 at 01:42 PM

"Indeed, Andrew. If a newbie to the sport walked into this blog, they'd think Fed will be lucky to not get a double breadstick. :)"
I feel exactly the same about nadal most of the time if i read the comments on TW
guess fed fans learnt few things from their frnds;-)))

Posted by TripleF(FedFanForever): Not Fuchsia! Pink it is. 08/15/2010 at 01:43 PM

Jackie
Oh no. can you move the flight? I say it is worth it.

Posted by scoreboarding 08/15/2010 at 01:43 PM

Nam1,
You're in Toronto, right?
I'm watching CBC via satellite. Are these commentators former tennis players? I don't recognize them.

Posted by Nam1 08/15/2010 at 01:44 PM

they are saying 20 mins break since the rain has stopped and they are drying the court.

Posted by Andrew 08/15/2010 at 01:45 PM

Talk amongst yourselves time on SkySports.

As well as coming from behind and winning Junkyard Dog matches, Federer has played plenty of finals when he's played multiple 3 set matches. The best example is probably Rome 2006, before the best 5 set match of the decade. Also Toronto 2006 - a bunch of 3 set matches.

Yes, I know that Federer's 29, but it's a three set match. If Federer began puffing at the end of a 5 match week, that would be news.

Posted by Tim (Outlaw the Moonpie!) 08/15/2010 at 01:45 PM

guys the rain is brilliant, they can show the match 'live' i am not a fan of live streams they freeze up at just the wrong time, let me guess theyre showing little league baseball on ESPN??

Posted by nina 08/15/2010 at 01:46 PM

Hello guys, Fed Andy are back, sky is clear, no rain

Posted by Heather 08/15/2010 at 01:46 PM

Tim, not LL baseball some random basketball exhibition.

Posted by Rafa 2010 Cincy champ, I told you so 08/15/2010 at 01:46 PM

I told you guys yesterday that it was supposed to rain today in Toronto. I guess that's why they scheduled the final so early at 1:30. So in case of rain delay, they would have more window to finish the match today. It's supposed to rain all day today, so they may have to play tomorrow.

Good for me since
a) Fed can rest up and beat Muzz straight tomorrow
b) Fed and Muzz's schedules will be screwed up for Cincy and both will be tired around SF next week. Now furious Rafa can waltz in there, just need to beat Djoker and BAM! Rafa 2010 Cincy champ! ha ha ha

Posted by crazyone 08/15/2010 at 01:46 PM

boys back on court.

Posted by Nam1 08/15/2010 at 01:46 PM

Scoreboarding,

I am in Toronto but I dont know who these commies are; I never heard of them but Peter Burwash comments during every Rogers cup.

Posted by scoreboarding 08/15/2010 at 01:46 PM

players back on court

Posted by Jackie 08/15/2010 at 01:47 PM

Triple F, I WISH. But I also have someone picking me up in Cincy, etc. Too much would get mucked up if I tried to do that ... plus the cost ...

OH WAIT, LOOK! They're coming back on!

I actually want Muzz to win so I won't feel like doody for missing the trophy ceremony. So conflicted. ;)

Posted by Rafa 2010 Cincy champ, I told you so 08/15/2010 at 01:48 PM

what, the rain stopped already? Darn you, weather.com! You said it's supposed to rain all day today.

Posted by Heather 08/15/2010 at 01:48 PM

does anyone have a stream that's working I can't seem to get ESPN3 to work?

Posted by wilson75 08/15/2010 at 01:50 PM

Heather: You can check fromsport.com

Posted by Heather 08/15/2010 at 01:51 PM

Thanks, Wilson!

Posted by Fangorina 08/15/2010 at 01:51 PM

stream please. ESPN3 sucks and will not open.

Posted by Nam1 08/15/2010 at 01:52 PM

Calm down Cincinatti,bforecast calls for thundershowers on and off all day. You may get your wish!!

Posted by Arun 08/15/2010 at 01:52 PM

Sky Sports stream -- http://entertainmenow.net/channel1.php

Posted by Yet Another Lurker 08/15/2010 at 01:52 PM

"If he plays like he did yesterday, Fed will get blown off the court."

Perplexed... does this mean that if Murray loses to Federer it'll only be because he didn't play like he did against Nadal?

Posted by TripleF(FedFanForever): Not Fuchsia! Pink it is. 08/15/2010 at 01:53 PM

Jackie
Don't worry. Fed will finish it in straights. Just over an hour (if wishes were...).
You will witness trophy ceremony and all...and even do the post match interview to continue your observations (subtle, witty and uncanny) over to Cincy.

Posted by scoreboarding 08/15/2010 at 01:54 PM

Nam1,
Thanks.

These two have to be very motivated. Andy hasn't won a title since November 2009 and Roger since Australia this year.

Posted by Rafa 2010 Cincy champ, I told you so 08/15/2010 at 01:54 PM

listening to Radiohead's paranoid android bridge session (you know, it starts with "rain down" etc) in hope of rain returning.... old Fed and his delicate back need rest!

Posted by Heather 08/15/2010 at 01:54 PM

Ugh, just found a stream and then it was removed for "copyright infringement." I am not a fan of ESPN at the moment....

Posted by Nam1 08/15/2010 at 01:54 PM

Scoreboarding

Here is the infor on one of the commies Peter Burwash

Peter Burwash (b. Brockville, Ontario[1][2]) is Canadian former tennis player, and current tennis coach, television commentator, motivational speaker and writer. Played from 1968-1974,

Posted by TripleF(FedFanForever): Not Fuchsia! Pink it is. 08/15/2010 at 01:54 PM

Folks looking for streams...the best investment is to buy the $89 ATP series for an entire year...

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