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RogerRulez
01-26-2006, 10:51 PM
November 2004

What do you think of Roger Federer, the Swiss world number one?

If you are only looking at the tennis and what he has done last year, you will think that he is better than Pete. Which, maybe, he is. But Pete had the desire to play at the highest level for so many years. That is very difficult, mentally. That in turn is the biggest question for Federer. Can he maintain the high level over six-seven years to break the record of 14 Grand Slams? Will he be able to remain world number one for five-six years in a row?

That is actually the only thing he is yet to prove. But if he continues to play tennis like this, he will definitely break Pete's record. Federer can be the best ever; he has the potential. The only question is whether he has the desire.

Phil
01-26-2006, 10:52 PM
November 2004

What do you think of Roger Federer, the Swiss world number one?

If you are only looking at the tennis and what he has done last year, you will think that he is better than Pete. Which, maybe, he is. But Pete had the desire to play at the highest level for so many years. That is very difficult, mentally. That in turn is the biggest question for Federer. Can he maintain the high level over six-seven years to break the record of 14 Grand Slams? Will he be able to remain world number one for five-six years in a row?

That is actually the only thing he is yet to prove. But if he continues to play tennis like this, he will definitely break Pete's record. Federer can be the best ever; he has the potential. The only question is whether he has the desire.

...and whether he can stay healthy.

VolklVenom
01-26-2006, 10:56 PM
...and whether he can take the mental strain of fending off every new kid on the block over the next 6 years??
It's a huge load and had Sampras literally pulling his hair out!

jings
01-26-2006, 11:04 PM
Putting my psyche hat on for a second I would say Federer seems far more cut out to enjoy being number one that Sampras did. By all accounts he is training and practising harder than ever to stay ahead of the pack. He's spoken before of a strong sense of vindication of his talent and sense of pride in #1 and representing his sport. He names #1 and Wimbledon as his top targets every year. Appears to be much happier in the limelight than Sampras ever did and recent articles in the FT etc attest to the fact he is very accomodating behind the scenes all in the name of the sport. His desire is there in my view. Phil I think has it right, his fitness is something to keep an eye on and where Sampras worked hard and was lucky by top athletes standards.

RogerRulez
01-26-2006, 11:06 PM
Putting my psyche hat on for a second I would say Federer seems far more cut out to enjoy being number one that Sampras did. By all accounts he is training and practising harder than ever to stay ahead of the pack. He's spoken before of a strong sense of vindication of his talent and sense of pride in #1 and representing his sport. He names #1 and Wimbledon as his top targets every year. Appears to be much happier in the limelight than Sampras ever did and recent articles in the FT etc attest to the fact he is very accomodating behind the scenes all in the name of the sport. His desire is there in my view. Phil I think has it right, his fitness is something to keep an eye on and where Sampras worked hard and was lucky by top athletes standards.


Right on jings. I also completely agree with Phil's assessment.

fastdunn
01-26-2006, 11:21 PM
The real dangerous moment in Pete's roughly 10 year domination
was when he played the infamous match at US Open against
Alex Corretja. That year he could not win any major (was it 1996?)
and if he could not win US Open, he knew his reign was in serious
danger. That match showed how big and deep his desire was.
Sampras got excess of tools but wasn't endowed with ironman like
fitness. But he had huge huge heart. He really wanted to be the
greatest.

jings
01-26-2006, 11:46 PM
and from memory fastdunn his only serious injury was to his back at some point which side lined him for a month or two I recall, but someone will remember better than I. Interestingly also he has in some of his rare interviews post retiring (when was that exactly?!) spoken of how he played in low grade pain for long periods (ankles, knees etc) but just ground through it and sucked it up. He got really tired of hurting and mentally having to push himself all the more. It's only when these really top players speak about this stuff that you begin to realise the real sacrifices they make. The grind of the tour - you better believe it.

Galactus
01-27-2006, 05:05 AM
Federer may be more interested in winning one or maybe two French Open titles than amassing 15 Slams right now...I think that's where his 2006-2007 agenda is going to be...
3 Wimbledons, 2 Aus Opens, 2 US Opens and say, 2 French Opens beats Sampras' 14 slams in terms of 'being the best ever'...

Brettolius
01-27-2006, 05:11 AM
You also have to take Krajicek's comments with a grain of salt, considering that besides Wimbledon, his career highlight was that he was always trouble for Sampras.