Peter Bodo's TennisWorld - RG Crisis Center, Day Quinze
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RG Crisis Center, Day Quinze 06/07/2009 - 8:45 AM


Well, it's T-minus 2 hours and 28 minutes as I write this here in the Roland Garros press room. I wrote an preview of the men's final for ESPN, you can read that post here. Beyond that, I think you can throw discussions about the X's and O's out the window on this one, even though they will ultimately constitute the "official" history of the 2009 Roland Garros final.

What we have here is something that only the most passionate of Federer fans might have expected as few as two weeks ago: a potential career-defining match. For just as a win here over Rafael Nadal in the final would have been the sweetest thing imaginable for the Federer faithful, a loss to Robin Soderling today will be a buzz-kill of remarkable proportions, making any defense of Federer's record sound hollow - even if that defense is utterly legitimate.

BTW, I hope all of you will remain civil and compassionate toward each other, no matter how things turn out. No amount of fanlove justifies the kind of chest-thumping or gloating that a huge match like this will invite- whoever wins.

On another front, a number of the Twibe's lovely chicas have assembled here at the last minute, despite scalper tickets running around $600 per seat in Chatrier. Given the historic nature of this match, that's a bargain, at least if you compare it to trying to get a ticket to, say, the seventh game of the World Series in a major market city. Anyway, Viv and her mum flew in from Cork, Ireland, and Alex and Susan K. from New York, who spent the first week here on vacation, extended their stay, hoping to see Federer make  history today (And JB - Susan, Viv and I were going to call you a few minutes ago, but wiser heads prevailed. . .)

Robin When I walked into the press center this morning, Dick Norman was standing at the desk, talking with one of the press assistants. It occurred to me that he may be trying to reach one of my Belgian colleagues, who sit near me in the work room upstairs. As I passed I said, "Dick, are you looking for somebody?"

"No," he said, "I'm just trying to get a video of a match."

When I was halfway up the stairs, he called after me, "Thanks for that article, I thought it was really great. . ."

We don't often get that kind of feedback from the players, so it's welcome when we do. But I bring this up just to let you know that many players read TennisWorld, and we can all be proud about that, right?

Enjoy the men's final, everyone, it's going to be one helluva day no matter what happens.

-- Pete

As at 10:35 TW time, TypePad is freezing, so an overflow is up.  Andrew

And at 1:10pm TW time, Overflow 2..... Andrew


Overflow 2

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Posted by mpiktas 06/07/2009 at 10:27 AM

two sets up. Yay! The most encouraging sign is that Roger raised his game, as a reply to Soderling raised level.

Posted by 1221 06/07/2009 at 10:28 AM

Almost there Rog...

Posted by Maha - *RG officially in state of chaos - Roger, seize your chance?????* 06/07/2009 at 10:28 AM

Yes!!!!!!! Set 2!!!!!!!

Man when will I get home?!?!??? :S

Posted by seaweed 06/07/2009 at 10:28 AM

hopefully robin will put up resistance, or maha will miss the entire thing!

Posted by Andrew Friedman (a.k.a. Rolo Tomassi) 06/07/2009 at 10:28 AM

So impressed with how Fed recovered from that lunatic who ran onto the court - it's one thing to shake off nerves, quite another to deal with something that calls your very safety and security into doubt - he's recovered magnificently... now we have to see whether or not Sod totally fades...

Posted by Mike 06/07/2009 at 10:28 AM

How many of you are like me ... and doing the walkabout?

I'm going from big screen in the living room ... to the computer, and back ... over and over. LOL

Better me than Rog ... hold it together for one more set, Fed! ... it ain't over till it's over!

Posted by Beckham (Bus Conductor!!!) 06/07/2009 at 10:28 AM

Welcome back serve, welcome back, you have been unfreakingbelievably missed...ALLEZ!!!

Posted by temes 06/07/2009 at 10:28 AM

Omg, just too good serving from Fed.

Posted by Matt Zemek 06/07/2009 at 10:28 AM

And with that tiebreak, Fed--I think--banished the fan incident from his mind for good.




Posted by Joe 06/07/2009 at 10:29 AM

Soderling doesn't play anything, it's very clear that Nadal had the knee problem, if he had feeling ok, never ever Sod can beat him

Posted by jb... (Go Smiley Fed!) 06/07/2009 at 10:30 AM

tennisrone - i gotta admit, if fed's can only have 1 locked in match, i'm ok with that being in the final!

tangi - lol - i think greenhopper maybe sleeping. she should have left our pacemakes out, with little name tags on them for us. though i believe you're was pink, no?

ok- 3rd set. and in the spirit of anything can happen, i still feel ill.

Posted by Samantha Elin, Soderling has friends. 06/07/2009 at 10:30 AM

Long live Swedish tennis. May its past, be its future. Kom nu!

Posted by Azhdaja 06/07/2009 at 10:30 AM

This is the Soderling I remember from before.
that's right!! The real Soderling. EVERYTHING BEFORE (the final)WAS A FAKE.

Posted by Matt Zemek 06/07/2009 at 10:30 AM

Sensational point.

Posted by Beckham (Bus Conductor!!!) 06/07/2009 at 10:30 AM

Pffffttt...Rpger tooo cute, you should be 15-30 up....ALLEZ!!!

Posted by Christopher 06/07/2009 at 10:31 AM

One shot at a time, Roger. One shot at a time.

Posted by Azhdaja 06/07/2009 at 10:32 AM

the first long rally happenes in the third set?? (23 shots)!??

Rafa and djoko, please come back.

Posted by TennisRone 1000 06/07/2009 at 10:32 AM

oh boy......BP for Fed....

Posted by kiwibee 06/07/2009 at 10:32 AM

Come on Roger!!!!

Posted by † Hallelujah 06/07/2009 at 10:32 AM

Fed's used good serving and variety from the baseline to ensure this isn't Soderling's preferred type of match - a slugfest. Soderling's never looked confortable out there. The incessant droppers and rhythm-busting aces have been enough to keep Soderling's forehand from clicking. That said, Soderling held serve comfortably throughout that second set, even held to love a couple times, he just got clinically closed out in that tiebreaker.

Posted by Codge 06/07/2009 at 10:32 AM

Oh no typepad hell again...

Posted by Matt Zemek 06/07/2009 at 10:32 AM

Consolidate, Rog.




Posted by Sherlock 06/07/2009 at 10:32 AM

Yeah, somewhere, Rafa is shaking his head saying, "What was I doing?"

Posted by toonie 06/07/2009 at 10:33 AM

break!!!! tangi how are you and the rest of the bus doing!

Posted by yello fuzzy 06/07/2009 at 10:33 AM

well that does it...congrats Roger #14 is in the bag

Posted by Marie 06/07/2009 at 10:33 AM

Boring, Boring, Boring match!
Maybe Soderling present Rodger with the trophe like some one just said. He is just giving the game to Roger.

Posted by Samantha Elin, Soderling has friends. 06/07/2009 at 10:34 AM

For all the people laughing about Soderling beating Rafa, he earned his way into this final.

Posted by Angel of the Surf (Dinara Safina the new WTA #1) 06/07/2009 at 10:34 AM

That's two from two that Soderling has won in the long rally department.

Posted by Or 06/07/2009 at 10:35 AM

I'm loving this from Roger, his first serve percentage are unbelievable.

Posted by Matt Zemek 06/07/2009 at 10:35 AM

Typepad definitely not focused or finishing.

2-0 Fed. Staying solid in all respects.

Posted by art_corvelay 06/07/2009 at 10:36 AM

16 points away.......

Posted by Angel of the Surf (Dinara Safina the new WTA #1) 06/07/2009 at 10:36 AM

I actually think Gonzo would of been a better opponent as he had already been in one final and would of not been as nervous. Damn you Gonzo.

Posted by Azhdaja 06/07/2009 at 10:36 AM

do not expect from federer to win any of those smaller tourneys. Because he has no money to waste.

Posted by toonie 06/07/2009 at 10:36 AM

Hey- typepad went on the Walkabout instead of roger! yeah!!

Posted by kiwibee 06/07/2009 at 10:38 AM

Come on Roger!

Posted by Beckham (Bus Conductor!!!) 06/07/2009 at 10:39 AM

C'mon Roger just keep holding don't let dude break you...ALLEZ..

Gosh, how much I've missed the Fed's serve, now please stay around for the rest of the match...the Fed needs to keep holding...ALLEZ!!!

Posted by Azhdaja 06/07/2009 at 10:39 AM

finally the first time in the match I see the point (40:15) that looks like deserves to be made in the major final.

Posted by Matt Zemek 06/07/2009 at 10:39 AM

Keep that iron-lock grip on your serve, Roger.




Posted by Jacko (Private Detective) (Sick of unnecessary JJ bashing) 06/07/2009 at 10:39 AM

Samantha...who's laffing about Soderlign beating Rafa???.......who says any negative stuff about Soderling??......unless ur takin about people on some other forum....

Posted by Andrew 06/07/2009 at 10:39 AM

Federer breaks and holds, Soderling holds. 2-1 Federer, with a break.

Rain starting again. TypePad nervous. Overflow is up.

Posted by jb... (Go Smiley Fed!) 06/07/2009 at 10:39 AM

Rolo! *waves* i know, fed seemed a bit off for a bit on his ground game, but his serve has stayed rock solid,

Soderling, aside from the first game this set, has really raised his level. If this is a permanent change for him, not having jellow inbetween his ears, he's going to hail on the hard courts, imo. i mean, this is CLAY!

Posted by Babe 06/07/2009 at 10:40 AM

Just a few games away--Stay With It, Roger!!!

Posted by Azhdaja 06/07/2009 at 10:40 AM

c'mon Sod you can lose this set in 4:6!! Just show us how you made it through to the final.

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