Hamburg 2004 was one the most impressive masters series triumphs of Federer's career. He beat Gaudio, Lapentti, Gonzalez, Moya, Hewitt and Coria to win that title. Coria, Gaudio and Moya were the 3 best players in the world on clay in 2004, and Gonzalez, Lapentti and Hewitt were dangerous/respectable opponents on the surface. So he went into that 3rd round match against Kuerten in good form.
It is just an opinion but I do think that Kuerten could have had an interesting rivalry with the Nadal of 2005-2006 on clay, and fared better against him than Federer did in those years. I think that he would have been overmatched against the scarily good Nadal of 2008 though.
And I agree that Kuerten is clearly above Federer in the clay court standings. 2 extra RG titles (including a successful title defence) is a very significant difference. Over the years I've seen some blind Federer worshippers (and not his many reasonable and fair-minded fans) ranking him as the third (or even second) greatest player on clay of all-time, which has been comical beyond belief.
Last edited by Gizo : 10-05-2012 at 08:06 PM.