Roger Federer: 2004 US Open was my best match and 2008 Wimbledon was my most heartbreaking loss

Entername

Professional

People always discuss this topic on TTW about what the best match each player ever played was and what was the toughest loss of each player's career. Federer sat down in an interview with sports media giant, Eurosport, to discuss his decision to retire, reflect on his career, and his hopes for the Laver Cup this weekend to wrap up one of the greatest sporting careers ever.

From about 10:40 to 11:40, he mentions the best match of his career as the 2004 US Open final because he said "the match was perfect, I was on top of the world with my 3rd slam of the year showing the world I was deserving of being number one against a guy who I struggled against early on in my career:

From 11:40 to 12:00, he said the 2008 Wimbledon final was his most heartbreaking moment on the tennis court because "the way it ended in the dark, playing against Rafa with so much on the line, and someone needed to win and it ended up going in Rafa's way and it was heartbreaking for me"

Very interesting interview I wish it was longer than 14 minutes
 

Nadal - GOAT

Hall of Fame

People always discuss this topic on TTW about what the best match each player ever played was and what was the toughest loss of each player's career. Federer sat down in an interview with sports media giant, Eurosport, to discuss his decision to retire, reflect on his career, and his hopes for the Laver Cup this weekend to wrap up one of the greatest sporting careers ever.

From about 10:40 to 11:40, he mentions the best match of his career as the 2004 US Open final because he said "the match was perfect, I was on top of the world with my 3rd slam of the year showing the world I was deserving of being number one against a guy who I struggled against early on in my career:

From 11:40 to 12:00, he said the 2008 Wimbledon final was his most heartbreaking moment on the tennis court because "the way it ended in the dark, playing against Rafa with so much on the line, and someone needed to win and it ended up going in Rafa's way and it was heartbreaking for me"

Very interesting interview I wish it was longer than 14 minutes
Am surprised he snubbed Wimb 19 altogether.. probably too recent and painful to speak about.

Though I agree that the 2008 W loss has to be most significant. It probably had a psychological impact on the AO 09 finals as well.
 

FD3S

Hall of Fame
I'm kinda surprised Fed didn't include his 2003 Davis Cup encounter with Hewitt (losing from two sets up) in the heartbreak category as well. Might be a bridge too far even now, he still gets noticeably emotional whenever Peter Carter gets brought up in interviews.
 

Mustard

Bionic Poster
Federer's 2004 US Open final against Hewitt is his best performance. It was the match that told us all that Federer wasn't just having a good 2004 but would be around for a long time. I actually fancied Hewitt's chances of winning before the match started, as he was a former US Open champion and it was about grit and determination in New York. Federer was 6-0, 2-0 up in about 25 minutes. Hewitt did unbelievably well to take the second set to a tiebreak, but once Federer won that tiebreak he went into another big surge. Hewitt looked shellshocked in his chair after the match was over. The following year, Hewitt pushed Federer hard in the 2005 US Open semi finals, so he could still push Federer hard there, but that 2004 US Open final was just majestic from Federer.

The 2008 Wimbledon final result changed the dynamics of the tennis world with Nadal winning. Federer was no longer the dominant guy everywhere except clay.
 

Tshooter

G.O.A.T.
Federer's 2004 US Open final against Hewitt is his best performance. It was the match that told us all that Federer wasn't just having a good 2004 but would be around for a long time. I actually fancied Hewitt's chances of winning before the match started, as he was a former US Open champion and it was about grit and determination in New York. Federer was 6-0, 2-0 up in about 25 minutes. Hewitt did unbelievably well to take the second set to a tiebreak, but once Federer won that tiebreak he went into another big surge. Hewitt looked shellshocked in his chair after the match was over. The following year, Hewitt pushed Federer hard in the 2005 US Open semi finals, so he could still push Federer hard there, but that 2004 US Open final was just majestic from Federer.

The 2008 Wimbledon final result changed the dynamics of the tennis world with Nadal winning. Federer was no longer the dominant guy everywhere except clay.
actually fancied Hewitt's chances of winning before the match started :laughing:
and it was about grit and determination in New York. :rolleyes:
 

Tshooter

G.O.A.T.
2019 is the most painful. Federer in that chair looked like a guy sitting on the curb after a car accident
Not even in his top 10, I bet. 2019 was all cake. He was, what, 37 or 38? That he was giving Egg a match at all given their respective ages and mileage was remarkable. That he held a match point even more so. 2008 was an epic match during his prime so, of course, it's a vastly bigger loss.

I know the Eggers like to paint 2019 like it's a negative for FEDR but by any reasonably historical measure it's a huge plus that he was playing at that level at that age. Let's see how Egg does in three years verse the #1 player in the world --- which won't be Egg. :giggle:
 

dapchai

Legend
Not even in his top 10, I bet. 2019 was all cake. He was, what, 37 or 38? That he was giving Egg a match at all given their respective ages and mileage was remarkable. That he held a match point even more so. 2008 was an epic match during his prime so, of course, it's a vastly bigger loss.
Agreed. In '08 he was the 5-time defending champ and the absolute #1. In '19 he was #3 (seeded #2) and had to play the #1 and reigning champ in the final. And beating Nadalovic back to back at a slam especially in SF-F? Yes he was very close to achieve that at 37-38, but I don't think he'd have much to regret. Guy should be proud of that instead of feeling devastated.
 

Fedforever

Hall of Fame
How dare he have his own opinion on what was his most heartbreaking loss!

The key is, as Federer says, about what was on the line.

If Federer had lost to Novak in four sets we'd all have shrugged and said "he did great to reach the final". If he'd lost to Rafa in four sets in 08 we would still have talked about it as a really significant loss.
 
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Krish0608

Legend
2019 is the most painful. Federer in that chair looked like a guy sitting on the curb after a car accident
Federer literally says the greatest losing final he ever played in his prime was his most heartbreaking loss and a random TTW user chips in - “2019 wAs ThE HarDEst. 40-15” . They think they know him better than himself. Never change, TTW.
 
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Feather

Legend
Not even in his top 10, I bet. 2019 was all cake. He was, what, 37 or 38? That he was giving Egg a match at all given their respective ages and mileage was remarkable. That he held a match point even more so. 2008 was an epic match during his prime so, of course, it's a vastly bigger loss.

I know the Eggers like to paint 2019 like it's a negative for FEDR but by any reasonably historical measure it's a huge plus that he was playing at that level at that age. Let's see how Egg does in three years verse the #1 player in the world --- which won't be Egg. :giggle:
See, the dynamics of the match also affect the emotions. Just imagine as a viewer watching both 2008 Wimbledon and 2019 Wimbledon. Here you have two match points, that too he reached there after hitting back to back aces. At that point , do you really expect Roger to lose? You are all set to celebrate and then the guy with one of the best serves ever loses the serve dramatically losing four points in a row.. It just hurts a lot. I am talking about this merely from the perspective of a fan..

Not exaggeration it's still a miracle for me how Roger lost the match at 40-15.. horrible beyond words..
 

joekapa

Legend
Downplaying the 2019 loss.........

Don't worry, we know what we saw........2008 nowhere near the same level.
 

RS

Talk Tennis Guru
Federer was just as good in the USO 07 QF at the same slam because he faced a worthy opponent :whistle:
 

joekapa

Legend
Federer literally says the greatest losing final he ever played in his prime was his most heartbreaking loss and a random TTW user chips in - “2019 wAs ThE HarDEst. 40-15” . They think they know him better than himself. Never change, TTW.
It was the longest Wimby final ever.

He played BETTER than his opponent.

He had 2 championship points, on his racket.

Would have cemented his legacy (He was taking Nadal's scalp.........but couldn't take Djokovic's in slams).

Never has beaten Djokovic in a Wimby final.

Ended up losing.

How is that not heartbreaking ?

His coach even admitted it.

2008 was trumped up........from now on.....it will ALWAYS be 40-15.
 

RS

Talk Tennis Guru
Well, then clearly people shouldn't take every take as gospel. You can't play your best in 2015 and have your best match come 11 years prior.
Good let's dismiss both statements or follow both statements :D

I will go with the former.
 

ChrisRF

Legend
It was the longest Wimby final ever.

He played BETTER than his opponent.

He had 2 championship points, on his racket.

Would have cemented his legacy (He was taking Nadal's scalp.........but couldn't take Djokovic's in slams).

Never has beaten Djokovic in a Wimby final.

Ended up losing.

How is that not heartbreaking ?

His coach even admitted it.

2008 was trumped up........from now on.....it will ALWAYS be 40-15.
I agree if it's only a about a single match. But 2008 also had a streak on the line, and it really seemed like he would win Wimbledon forever, just like Nadal at RG. So I would understand why he says 2008.

For me as a fan I might add RG 2006 and 2007, because he had his chances in both matches and it would have been the CYGS. I know the pressure would increase for Wimbledon and US Open then, but especially in 2006 Federer was so much superior to anyone there that he would have done it, I'm sure about this.
 

Krish0608

Legend
It was the longest Wimby final ever.

He played BETTER than his opponent.

He had 2 championship points, on his racket.

Would have cemented his legacy (He was taking Nadal's scalp.........but couldn't take Djokovic's in slams).

Never has beaten Djokovic in a Wimby final.

Ended up losing.

How is that not heartbreaking ?

His coach even admitted it.

2008 was trumped up........from now on.....it will ALWAYS be 40-15.
Another TTW user who thinks he knows better about Federer than himself. Give it up man. 2019 was not even close to 2008 in terms of quality and being iconic. Not to mention 2008 was a final where both of them were in their prime. It's the greatest match ever for a reason. It had everything from tremendous shotmaking, insane drama and a literal photo finish. Obviously Federer will pick that as the biggest heartbreak over mediocre quality choke job like Wimbledon 2019 lol. It's obvious to everybody except haters who are disappointed that Federer is not feeling as heartbroken about 2019 as they hoped it would be.
 

junior74

Talk Tennis Guru
Am surprised he snubbed Wimb 19 altogether.. probably too recent and painful to speak about.

Though I agree that the 2008 W loss has to be most significant. It probably had a psychological impact on the AO 09 finals as well.
Not surprised at all. He was way, way passed his best. That's why it's less heartbreaking.
It would have been an almost bizarre bonus, had he won Wimbledon at 38.
 

joekapa

Legend
Another TTW user who thinks he knows better about Federer than himself. Give it up man. 2019 was not even close to 2008 in terms of quality and being iconic. Not to mention 2008 was a final where both of them were in their prime. It's the greatest match ever for a reason. It had everything from tremendous shotmaking, insane drama and a literal photo finish. Obviously Federer will pick that as the biggest heartbreak over mediocre quality choke job like Wimbledon 2019 lol. It's obvious to everybody except haters who are disappointed that Federer is not feeling as heartbroken about 2019 as they hoped it would be.
It's not in his interest to say it was his most heartbreaking loss. It ended his career. Not only that Djokovic done it to Federer THREE times, Twowith match points on his racket.

BY FAR the most heartbreaking losses have been handed to him by Djokovic.
And HISTORY will show this.
 

joekapa

Legend
Not surprised at all. He was way, way passed his best. That's why it's less heartbreaking.
It would have been an almost bizarre bonus, had he won Wimbledon at 38.
It was his LAST chance to "seal the deal" against Djokovic. He did it against Nadal in 2017 AO. Couldn't pull it off against Djokovic.

There is NO DOUBT he would of retired if he sealed the deal at Wimby 2019........no doubt. It would have been a MONUMENTAL ending........and his GOAT status would have been SOLIDIFIED.
 
Maybe what they like to hear as well?
Well it's just what makes sense. If Fed says 08 was the worst, I don't see why that's particularly controversial; if it isn't actually true then ho hum. If he comes out and plays doubles at Laver Cup, shanks everything and retires half way through for the first time in his career and then says it was the best tennis he's ever played, then come to think of it that's actually reasonable too, fair enough good point.
 
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Fedforever

Hall of Fame
It's obvious to everybody except haters who are disappointed that Federer is not feeling as heartbroken about 2019 as they hoped it would be.
The key right here. I don't even get what the point of it is, from a Djoko fan point of view.

Continually telling people that Federer was a useless, choking, overrated idiot might make them wonder how six years younger Goatness-of-all-time-and-the-entire-universe was so close to losing to him in the first place.
 

junior74

Talk Tennis Guru
It was his LAST chance to "seal the deal" against Djokovic. He did it against Nadal in 2017 AO. Couldn't pull it off against Djokovic.

There is NO DOUBT he would of retired if he sealed the deal at Wimby 2019........no doubt. It would have been a MONUMENTAL ending........and his GOAT status would have been SOLIDIFIED.
Yes, but losing in 2008 was worse, because Fed was still in his best years as a player.

It would absolutely have been monumental. And it got very close.
 

Fedforever

Hall of Fame
There is NO DOUBT he would of retired if he sealed the deal at Wimby 2019........no doubt. It would have been a MONUMENTAL ending........and his GOAT status would have been SOLIDIFIED.
Oh please. None of that is true and you know it. Nadal and Djoko fans would have conceded Goatness to Federer if he'd won that match? And why would he have retired? He didn't know knee injury and COVID were round the corner.
 

joekapa

Legend
Yes, but losing in 2008 was worse, because Fed was still in his best years as a player.

It would absolutely have been monumental. And it got very close.
No way was it his worse in 2008. If there was a match against Nadal that was heartbreaking, it was AO 2009. It's there he realised that his reign would be over.
But 2019 was career ending, and legacy damaging.....

Just look at how many threads have popped up here, with the subject of 40-15, once he announced his retirement. If his fans are still talking about their disappointment........you think he doesn't realise how much this match mattered ?
 

RS

Talk Tennis Guru
Well it's just what makes sense. If Fed says 08 was the worst, I don't see why that's particularly controversial; if it isn't actually true then ho hum. If he comes out and plays doubles at Laver Cup, shanks everything and retires half way through for the first time in his career and then says it was the best tennis he's ever played, then come to think of it that's actually reasonable too, fair enough good point.
Just interesting a player opinion now matters that's all. We heard they were idiots before.
 

joekapa

Legend
Oh please. None of that is true and you know it. Nadal and Djoko fans would have conceded Goatness to Federer if he'd won that match? And why would he have retired? He didn't know knee injury and COVID were round the corner.
It would of been a Samprasesque ending. A dream ending. Beating one of your major rivals (his biggest rivalry in terms of number of matches played), on his favorite surface......after beeing beaten TWICE before.

From a recent interview.
You have sometimes dreamed of ending your career with a Grand Slam victory, like Sampras.
I would say yes, in a certain vision. ...........
 

Nadal - GOAT

Hall of Fame
Not surprised at all. He was way, way passed his best. That's why it's less heartbreaking.
It would have been an almost bizarre bonus, had he won Wimbledon at 38.
You are right.. Though he was much closer to winning the 2019 Wimb as compared to the 2008 one.

But yes, the 2008 W followed by AO 09 must have been heartbreaking for Fed considering that he was playing pretty well.
 
I have a hard time believing he actually considers 2008 more heartbreaking than 2019.
He does not consider 2019 less heartbreaking.
He just desperately tries to make it less significant to feel better and ease a pain.

2008 had been buried in the past, many of 2009-2012 wins covered it.
2019 can't be buried.
Like a bagel in the very last set against Hurkacz at Wim21.
 

joekapa

Legend
You are right.. Though he was much closer to winning the 2019 Wimb as compared to the 2008 one.

But yes, the 2008 W followed by AO 09 must have been heartbreaking for Fed considering that he was playing pretty well.
AO 2009, was when he realised that he will no longer be No1.........it was bound to happen to any player who dominated.

The changing of the guard was here.

2019 was his last chance to solidify his GOATness compared to the other 2. It was career ending. It meant MUCH more......
 

junior74

Talk Tennis Guru
No way was it his worse in 2008. If there was a match against Nadal that was heartbreaking, it was AO 2009. It's there he realised that his reign would be over.
But 2019 was career ending, and legacy damaging.....

Just look at how many threads have popped up here, with the subject of 40-15, once he announced his retirement. If his fans are still talking about their disappointment........you think he doesn't realise how much this match mattered ?
Federer must surely be wrong :)

I think it matters less, because he considers his best years as the more important ones.

He even said AO17 was a bonus, because he was getting old and didn't expect to win more majors.
 
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