|09-11-2012, 05:01 AM||#1|
Join Date: Aug 2012
So, where is this era now?
Want to sum up, if I can, where I think mens' tennis current is right now.
If you go back 2 or 3 years it was pure Nadal, Federer and Djokovic dominance with only Murray knocking at the door but not quite being able to open it.
This year, things have changed significantly.
Roger Federer Whether you consider him the GOAT or not he is definitely one of them, and his career has been quite staggering. The slams he's amassed are unlikely to be equaled, never minded surpassed, and his legacy is assured. However he's aging now, significantly, and went 2 years without a slam, only managing to secure one again at SW19. His unforced error count has risen sharply in the past few years, and while he hit a great deal of winners in the final at Wimbledon, his unforced errors were through the roof. Murray finally got the better of him at the Olympics, and then Berdych beat him with relative ease at Flushing Meadows. He will still be there or there abouts at the business end of slams for the next year, but I would be very surprised if Federer makes another slam final again. He simply isn't the player he was.
Novak Djokovic He was on his way to achieving a Rod Laver till Nadal just about got the better of him at Roland Garos, and the procession of 3 slams in a row in this era was sensational. Given they were against a Nadal at his peak. But for me he mentally broke when he double faulted to give Rafa the French Open, and since then has been to one slam final and didn't have the strength either physically or mentally to take it as far as he had against Nadal in last year's. For me, Djokovic, while still a remarkable player, isn't the robot he was during that 3 slam run, and is mortal now.
Rafael Nadal It's hard to know how to judge Nadal at the moment. Perennially injured and unable to compete in anything, his continued absence from the sport is worrying. 3 slam defeats in a row to Djokovic also showed he could no longer be judged the world's best, and while his record at RG is insane, whether he will return from injury to defend it is another matter. We all know how intense, how brilliant, and how much of a warrior he is, but it's difficult to see where the future lies for Nadal.
Andy Murray Finally stepping out of the shadows and at long last the bridesmaid becomes the bride. Murray has been to 5 slam finals and well beaten in 3 of them. Wimbledon he put up a better fight at, then OG beckoned. Now he's outfought and outmuscled Djokovic to claim his maiden slam, there is a distinct opening there. I can't see him dominating the sport in the way the other 3 did, but he's as hard a worker as any of them, if not more so, and there will be further opportunities to win more slams - now the lad knows what it takes to win one, he is capable of doing so.
DP: Talented player and with Murray achieving what he did in 2009, if the Argentine can resurrect that form and stay injury free, he could challenge. At a fine age and has potential.
Tsonga: Perennial underachiever, he's a good player, talented with it, but doesn't seem very polished. He is capable of matching the best, but consistency with him is a huge problem and lacks mental strength too. Unlikely to make the step up.
Ferrer: Wrong age. He's hit his peak in his late 20s with several semi final slots, but doesn't have the quality to go further. A good reliable and robust terrier like player, but not one who has another gear to move to.
Berdych: Erratic - Murray was correct about him. Can be sensational, but can be utterly dire too. Also suffers from angst on the court and lets it get the better of him. Very big-hitting and a threat to anyone, as Federer knows, but I'm unsure if he has what it takes to win a slam.