Soderling, how did he do it?

Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by raiden031, Jun 6, 2009.

  1. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2006
    Messages:
    5,997
    I'm still perplexed that this guy is in the finals. Maybe I have been far too spoiled by Nadal and Federer's domination the last couple years, but I still don't understand how a guy like Soderling who is so mediocre as past results show is able to play so hot at one tournament that he can take out Nadal on clay and then continue beating opponents convincingly enough to make it to the final. Having not followed tennis other than a little bit during the Sampras/Agassi era and the last couple years with Fed, is this something that happens alot?

    I looked at his playing activity and I don't see anything that really leads up to this performance. I mean how can you lose 0 and 1 to Nadal on clay a few weeks ago and then turn around and blow him off the court at RG??

    Anyone know of any notable examples of mediocre players pulling off something like this in the past?

    I'm as big a Fed fan as any other, but I'm seriously worried about this final. If Soderling can be on this hot streak for 6 match, whats another match? Fed deserves all the credit for his talent, heart, and determination to make it to this final, but I feel like if he doesn't play like a champion the whole match, Soderling could really take this one.
     
    #1
  2. jamesblakefan#1

    jamesblakefan#1 G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2007
    Messages:
    15,761
    Location:
    VA Beach
    It just shows that tennis is not unlike any other sport. How did the Arizona Cardinals make it to the Super Bowl? How did George Mason make it to the final Four in NCAA basketball? How did the Florida Marlins win the World Series in 2003? How did Team USA beat USSR in Olympic hockey?

    It's the streaky nature of sports, where if one person or team gets hot and gains confidence, there's no telling what they can do.
     
    #2
  3. jamesblakefan#1

    jamesblakefan#1 G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2007
    Messages:
    15,761
    Location:
    VA Beach
    As of right now, you'd have to say Baghdatis has had a mediocre career, and he made the run to the AO final in 06. But yes, Soderling's run has to be one of the biggest surprises in tennis history.

    Thomas Johannson? Rainer Schuettler at Wimbledon last yr?
     
    #3
  4. joeri888

    joeri888 G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2008
    Messages:
    13,120
    How I hate to put him in this line of players Martin Verkerk's 2003 french open should be up there. He beat players like Coria and Moya on the way to the final. Not exactly Nadal, but still really shocking results
     
    #4
  5. carlos djackal

    carlos djackal Professional

    Joined:
    May 21, 2008
    Messages:
    1,246
    Location:
    near a tennis court

    I agree..........
     
    #5
  6. Gorecki

    Gorecki G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2007
    Messages:
    13,227
    Location:
    Puerto y Galgo....
    Please elaborate? having only 24 guys better than you in the whole world is a sign of mediocrity?
     
    #6
  7. sixone90

    sixone90 Professional

    Joined:
    May 7, 2008
    Messages:
    1,248
    Tsonga in AO 2008
     
    #7
  8. GiveMeGut

    GiveMeGut New User

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2008
    Messages:
    52
    How about Thomas Johannson winning the 2002 Australian Open. Thomas could at best be considered a journeyman player, but he beat the best in the world that year including Safin in the final.
     
    #8
  9. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2006
    Messages:
    5,997
    Yes the guy has 3 titles to his name. He hasn't made it past the 3rd round in any slam event. You're right, he is not mediocre, he is a great player.
     
    #9
  10. JeMar

    JeMar Legend

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2008
    Messages:
    6,698
    He got to the final by hitting the snot off the ball, painting lines, and coming to net to finish points.

    That's pretty much it.
     
    #10
  11. prince

    prince Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    752
    its the same tennis genie who gave verkerk some temporary powers ,but took it away in the finals to see if he believes in himself.
     
    #11
  12. Mikael

    Mikael Professional

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2004
    Messages:
    1,041
    Fast and high bouncing clay courts due to sunny weather. Every dry and sunny year at the FO you see tall attacking players doing surprisingly well... Kafelnikov and Stich made the 96 final with Sampras in the semis... Verkerk made the final in 2003 which IIRC was also dry and sunny.

    Soderling didn't exactly "destroy" Nadal or "blow him off the court". It was a tight 4 set battle. If Nadal wins that 4th set tiebreak, he can turn the match around. Fact is, Nadal was playing sub-par (like in his 1st round match), Soderling was full of confidence (beating Schuettler 0 and 0 and then a great clay courter like Ferrer), so a tight match was always going to be on the cards. The only really surprising thing is that Soderling played the big points much better.

    Goes to show anything in possible in a sport which is decided by inches and milliseconds...
     
    #12
  13. tennisplaya

    tennisplaya Rookie

    Joined:
    May 20, 2009
    Messages:
    269
    easy he beat a busted up Nadal with knee problems, and then he felt like Superman ever since. Unfortunately the weather will be totally different in the final so it wont suite his style.
     
    #13
  14. Mikael

    Mikael Professional

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2004
    Messages:
    1,041
    And BTW, weather has now become rainy over the weekend, the courts play much slower and lower during the final. Looks like Federer really is destined to win, even the weather is miraculously 100% on his side.
     
    #14
  15. Rhino

    Rhino Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2005
    Messages:
    7,474
    Location:
    South of London, west of Moscow
    In 1996 Roberto Carretero won the Hamburg Masters as a qualifier. He only had 23 tour match wins in his whole career, and 6 of them were during that one week in Hamburg!
     
    #15
  16. dParis

    dParis Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2004
    Messages:
    1,686
    Seems the clay is slow enough to give him time time to get into position and knock the snot out of the ball. But the clay is fast enough for him to hit the ball through the court. He's not interested in grinding out points in the traditional clay manner. He's being very aggressive and succeeding within the thin margins. The high bounce off of the clay is giving him less trouble than any other player in the tournament. As a matter of fact, he almost uses the high ball to his advantage, using his height and leverage to flatten out the return and increase the pace. Also, that DTL back hand is straight killin' people.
     
    #16
  17. Spider

    Spider Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2007
    Messages:
    2,247
    Location:
    UK
    He is enjoying the high bounce these courts have to offer and the quickness of the courts. They seem to be suiting his game style quite well.

    Havind said that, the courts were slower today due to the weather (and the weather forecast predicts another cloudy day tommorow).

    Like I said earlier, it is destiny calling for Roger Federer.
     
    #17
  18. FlamEnemY

    FlamEnemY Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    Messages:
    3,554
    He is secreatly Borg's *******.
    Really.
     
    #18
  19. Gorecki

    Gorecki G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2007
    Messages:
    13,227
    Location:
    Puerto y Galgo....
    so smart ***..

    care to enlighten us with your tennis achievements?

    or professional ones for the sake of the argument?

    or just to elaborate as asked?
     
    #19
  20. crazylevity

    crazylevity Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2005
    Messages:
    1,978
    I LOLed at this. That would have been amazing, especially if he took out a couple of seeds along the way.

    They should make a movie about him and call it A Week to Remember. Co-starring Mandy Moore.
     
    #20
  21. Ajtat411

    Ajtat411 Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2009
    Messages:
    591
    I think he is on the juice. haha
     
    #21
  22. Rhino

    Rhino Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2005
    Messages:
    7,474
    Location:
    South of London, west of Moscow
    I think a lot of people will be wondering if there is a Mariano Puerta situation going on here, but I think they test the players randomly about 20 times a year now.
     
    #22
  23. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,434
    Martin Verkerk had only 1 title to his name and was ranked #56 when he made the finals of RG in 2003.

    Gustavo Kuerten had 0 titles to his name and was ranked #66 when he won his first of 3 RG titles in 1997.
     
    #23

Share This Page