Roger Federer went SIXTEEN Grand Slams without reaching a Quarterfinal

Vamos Rafa Nadal

Hall of Fame
Edit: I made a mistake - it was his 11th Grand Slam where he reached his first Grand Slam QF - I include the two times he lost in the qualifiers. I was quoting Pete Sampras from his autobiography and Pete had made a mistake, which I made as well!

I find it strange when posters call the young players "mugs" or when they lose early in a GS or other tournaments that they will never ever win a Grand Slam or become a great player - we could all agree that Roger Federer is an all-time great and it took him around 4 years to make it as far as a Quarterfinal - he has gone on to win 20 Grand Slams.

So my favorite player on the tour right now, Carlos Alcaraz, who has already made it to a QF in his 4th GS, he has time to improve and learn how to handle the pressures both physically and mentally - and so do the other potential future stars of tennis. There are quite a few potential future champions right now. Give them time, a few of them will eventually become Grand Slam champions!
 
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Kralingen

Hall of Fame
Young Fed struggling through what is regarded as one of the weaker periods in tennis (2000-2003) will always leave me baffled.

How was it possible that out of Hewitt, Safin, Roddick, Ferrero, Nalbandian, Coria, Federer was the LAST to reach a grand slam semi? Like if you told that to anyone on TTW who was unfamiliar with the period, they would laugh you out of the room. And yet, completely true.

it’s not like he had any injuries that caused him to miss tournaments either.. so bizarre.
 

Vamos Rafa Nadal

Hall of Fame
I looked up his chart and it turns out it was his TENTH Grand Slam he reached a QF. He didn't win until his NINETEENTH Grand Slam! I was quoting Pete Sampras, who was mistaken in his autobiography!

But the point I was trying to make is the same!
 

NatF

Bionic Poster
Young Fed struggling through what is regarded as one of the weaker periods in tennis (2000-2003) will always leave me baffled.

How was it possible that out of Hewitt, Safin, Roddick, Ferrero, Nalbandian, Coria, Federer was the LAST to reach a grand slam semi? Like if you told that to anyone on TTW who was unfamiliar with the period, they would laugh you out of the room. And yet, completely true.

it’s not like he had any injuries that caused him to miss tournaments either.. so bizarre.
Agassi, Sampras, Kuerten, Rafter, Henman etc...lots of great players in that period with different styles etc... 8-B
 

Vamos Rafa Nadal

Hall of Fame
Federer needed time to develop his game, improve his skills. He had the raw talent and he had to learn how to harness it and use it effectively. Novak took a few years to fully develop - he won his first GS in 2008 but then didn't win again until 2011 and never looked back from that point in time. Rafa was unusual in that he won very quickly as a teen and unlike so many other teens he continued to improve and won 20 Grand Slams over a 16 year period (2005-2020 is 16 tennis years). Dominic Thiem took a ton of years before he won his first GS. My point is to not expect the young players to be consistently great immediately and give them time to improve their tennis!
 

The Fedfather

Hall of Fame
Young Fed struggling through what is regarded as one of the weaker periods in tennis (2000-2003) will always leave me baffled.

How was it possible that out of Hewitt, Safin, Roddick, Ferrero, Nalbandian, Coria, Federer was the LAST to reach a grand slam semi? Like if you told that to anyone on TTW who was unfamiliar with the period, they would laugh you out of the room. And yet, completely true.

it’s not like he had any injuries that caused him to miss tournaments either.. so bizarre.
It's a classic main character journey. Struggling before uncovering the insane potential hidden within and becoming overpowered.
 
Federer needed time to develop his game, improve his skills. He had the raw talent and he had to learn how to harness it and use it effectively. Novak took a few years to fully develop - he won his first GS in 2008 but then didn't win again until 2011 and never looked back from that point in time. Rafa was unusual in that he won very quickly as a teen and unlike so many other teens he continued to improve and won 20 Grand Slams over a 16 year period (2005-2020 is 16 tennis years). Dominic Thiem took a ton of years before he won his first GS. My point is to not expect the young players to be consistently great immediately and give them time to improve their tennis!
Don't you know that no player in tennis history has ever made any improvement after turning 10? Younger is ALWAYS better.
 

Kralingen

Hall of Fame
Agassi, Sampras, Kuerten, Rafter, Henman etc...lots of great players in that period with different styles etc... 8-B
It's a classic main character journey. Struggling before uncovering the insane potential hidden within and becoming overpowered.
it's not too absurd to think that a player might struggle with consistency at a young age or get shafted by draws, I guess. Still a fair amount of headscratching losses in there like Arazi, Horna, Mirnyi, Rafter on clay etc.

What is absurd is producing a performance like Wimbledon 2003 (seriously one of the GOAT grass forms ever) after not doing basically anything in Slams up until that point. Ridiculous.
 
it's not too absurd to think that a player might struggle with consistency at a young age or get shafted by draws, I guess. Still a fair amount of headscratching losses in there like Arazi, Horna, Mirnyi, Rafter on clay etc.

What is absurd is producing a performance like Wimbledon 2003 (seriously one of the GOAT grass forms ever) after not doing basically anything in Slams up until that point. Ridiculous.
Also six weeks after a dismal RG loss.
 
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Fedforever

Hall of Fame
I think a lot of the frustration with the Next Gen is that other than Medvedev (and Thiem if you count him as Next Gen) they don't seem to take becoming champions seriously.

Tsitispas being a case in point. Lose your first Grand Slam Final to an ATG? No problem. Going out in early rounds in your next two tournaments, behaving like a tw*t in Hamburg and then becoming famous for your weak bladder? How is that consistent with someone looking to be a Slam winner and maybe ranked No 1?
 

Jokervich

Hall of Fame
I think a lot of the frustration with the Next Gen is that other than Medvedev (and Thiem if you count him as Next Gen) they don't seem to take becoming champions seriously.

Tsitispas being a case in point. Lose your first Grand Slam Final to an ATG? No problem. Going out in early rounds in your next two tournaments, behaving like a tw*t in Hamburg and then becoming famous for your weak bladder? How is that consistent with someone looking to be a Slam winner and maybe ranked No 1?
Zverev looked serious about becoming a champion. He looked genuinely upset after that 5 set loss against Djokovic at the US Open. But you always wonder whether he will turn into Clownrev at some point.

For the rest of the next gen, I do agree with you though.
 

mattennis

Hall of Fame
it's not too absurd to think that a player might struggle with consistency at a young age or get shafted by draws, I guess. Still a fair amount of headscratching losses in there like Arazi, Horna, Mirnyi, Rafter on clay etc.

What is absurd is producing a performance like Wimbledon 2003 (seriously one of the GOAT grass forms ever) after not doing basically anything in Slams up until that point. Ridiculous.
He was a very flashy and talented young player, but he was not that consistent from the back of the court, he was quite error-prone, especially in important moments...

If you rewatch many of his losses against Mantilla, Corretja, Nalbandian, Hewitt and others, you can see that he felt he couldn't go toe-to-toe against those players from the back of the court, so he tried to finish the points a bit too early, a bit too soon, and made many mistakes.

I think the change of strings around 2002 or 2003 was absolutely crucial for him, because then he felt for the first time that he could battle from the back of the court against anyone with consistency, and he could choose very much better when to attack or when to be more patient.

I think Safin, Hewitt and many others of that time that used to hit much flatter shots, were not as rewarded by the new strings.
 

mike danny

Bionic Poster
He was a very flashy and talented young player, but he was not that consistent from the back of the court, he was quite error-prone, especially in important moments...

If you rewatch many of his losses against Mantilla, Corretja, Nalbandian, Hewitt and others, you can see that he felt he couldn't go toe-to-toe against those players from the back of the court, so he tried to finish the points a bit too early, a bit too soon, and made many mistakes.

I think the change of strings around 2002 or 2003 was absolutely crucial for him, because then he felt for the first time that he could battle from the back of the court against anyone with consistency, and he could choose very much better when to attack or when to be more patient.

I think Safin, Hewitt and many others of that time that used to hit much flatter shots, were not as rewarded by the new strings.
Federer switched to the new strings in 2002 and had worse results than in 2001, so it wasn't that simple.
 

mike danny

Bionic Poster
Federer needed time to develop his game, improve his skills. He had the raw talent and he had to learn how to harness it and use it effectively. Novak took a few years to fully develop - he won his first GS in 2008 but then didn't win again until 2011 and never looked back from that point in time. Rafa was unusual in that he won very quickly as a teen and unlike so many other teens he continued to improve and won 20 Grand Slams over a 16 year period (2005-2020 is 16 tennis years). Dominic Thiem took a ton of years before he won his first GS. My point is to not expect the young players to be consistently great immediately and give them time to improve their tennis!
Fed won his first slam at nearly 22. Medvedev won his first at 25. By age 25, Fed was already an ATG.

Everybody under age 25 is useless by comparison so Fed didn't do too bad. If you want to look at someone actually useless at a young age, look at Medvedev.
 

mike danny

Bionic Poster
Young Fed struggling through what is regarded as one of the weaker periods in tennis (2000-2003) will always leave me baffled.

How was it possible that out of Hewitt, Safin, Roddick, Ferrero, Nalbandian, Coria, Federer was the LAST to reach a grand slam semi? Like if you told that to anyone on TTW who was unfamiliar with the period, they would laugh you out of the room. And yet, completely true.

it’s not like he had any injuries that caused him to miss tournaments either.. so bizarre.
The only head scratching thing for me is Fed doing horribly in 2002.

Fed not doing well in 2000 isn't such a big deal. Djokovic didn't blossom at 19 either.

In 2001 he could have done better, but he did have rough draws at Wimb/USO. 20 year old Djoko/Nadal wouldn't have really done any better at those.

2002 was the only head scratcher. A pretty easy year and Fed didn't even reach a slam QF. And it's not like the level wasn't there. He played peak tennis at Hamburg, played great tennis in Miami and WTF too. With those levels, a slam should have been on the cards, particularly Wimb.
 

Aabye5

Hall of Fame
Young Fed struggling through what is regarded as one of the weaker periods in tennis (2000-2003) will always leave me baffled.

How was it possible that out of Hewitt, Safin, Roddick, Ferrero, Nalbandian, Coria, Federer was the LAST to reach a grand slam semi? Like if you told that to anyone on TTW who was unfamiliar with the period, they would laugh you out of the room. And yet, completely true.

it’s not like he had any injuries that caused him to miss tournaments either.. so bizarre.
Look at Med. He didn't come out of the gates until much later than Zverev or Tstisipas from a career standpoint, but he's now eclipsed them both.

That could change obviously...
 
The whole 'next gen are worthless mugs' narrative comes from some people being nervous about Novak breaking all most important records. Nothing else.
 

MeatTornado

G.O.A.T.
Federer needed time to develop his game, improve his skills. He had the raw talent and he had to learn how to harness it and use it effectively.
For sure it was more the mental side with him than needing to develop the actual skills. You can really trace the final step he took back to when his old coach Peter Carter tragically died in 2002. That kinda gave Roger the kick in the pants he needed to get serious and focus on his game, ending the on-court meltdowns that used to plague him in his young career.

It was horrible for Roger Federer the human, but probably the best thing to happen to Roger Federer the tennis player.
 

Third Serve

G.O.A.T.
The whole 'next gen are worthless mugs' narrative comes from some people being nervous about Novak breaking all most important records. Nothing else.
that narrative was there in 2017/2018 too, it's not just because of Djokovic

I found this thread in well under a minute

 

Kralingen

Hall of Fame
The only head scratching thing for me is Fed doing horribly in 2002.

Fed not doing well in 2000 isn't such a big deal. Djokovic didn't blossom at 19 either.

In 2001 he could have done better, but he did have rough draws at Wimb/USO. 20 year old Djoko/Nadal wouldn't have really done any better at those.

2002 was the only head scratcher. A pretty easy year and Fed didn't even reach a slam QF. And it's not like the level wasn't there. He played peak tennis at Hamburg, played great tennis in Miami and WTF too. With those levels, a slam should have been on the cards, particularly Wimb.
yeah '01 Fed I think was making ground (presumably after playing the Hopman Cup with Hingis and realizing how awful his footwork was ;);))

I write that one off to unlucky draws. loses to eventual AO finalist Clement, FO finalist Corretja, beats Pete but loses to Henman at Wimby, loses to Agassi at USO. Unlucky, really.

'02 yeah no excuses. I do think that's the year if you want to do hypotheticals where Djokodal could pounce: i.e. equivalent Djokovic won the AO and went to FO/USO SFs, Federer lost early in all 4. Meanwhile Nadal was already '08 GOATdal on clay and great on grass/HC as well. I do think the other two were far more physically developed and had better stamina, mentally and physically.

But it's less about other ATGs, I just am completely baffled how Safin, Hewitt, Ferrero, Roddick, Nalbandian, Coria all did better, at the same age, against the same opponents, in the same era. I guess it's a reflection of the raw talent all of that generation possessed?
 
that narrative was there in 2017/2018 too, it's not just because of Djokovic

I found this thread in well under a minute

Shows what those posters know about tennis talent. Anyway, threads and posts denigrating next gen multiplied lately and it's ridiculous because some of them are obviously legit force in today's tennis.
Just as surely as the constant name calling of Federer's generation has absolutely nothing to do with partisan fandom
/s
Well yes, partisan fandom is the bread and butter of GPPD. 2 wrongs don't make right though.
 

mike danny

Bionic Poster
yeah '01 Fed I think was making ground (presumably after playing the Hopman Cup with Hingis and realizing how awful his footwork was ;);))

I write that one off to unlucky draws. loses to eventual AO finalist Clement, FO finalist Corretja, beats Pete but loses to Henman at Wimby, loses to Agassi at USO. Unlucky, really.

'02 yeah no excuses. I do think that's the year if you want to do hypotheticals where Djokodal could pounce: i.e. equivalent Djokovic won the AO and went to FO/USO SFs, Federer lost early in all 4. Meanwhile Nadal was already '08 GOATdal on clay and great on grass/HC as well. I do think the other two were far more physically developed and had better stamina, mentally and physically.

But it's less about other ATGs, I just am completely baffled how Safin, Hewitt, Ferrero, Roddick, Nalbandian, Coria all did better, at the same age, against the same opponents, in the same era. I guess it's a reflection of the raw talent all of that generation possessed?
Some guys mature earlier than others.

Zverev and Tsitsipas both matured at earlier ages than Medvedev and yet Medvedev has them beat.

And I think we should put what Fed did in perspective. Sure, the guy was a late bloomer, but at 22 he had already won titles at every big level: masters, WTF and slams.

Nowadays, what's considered impressive at 22 is reaching a major SF and not getting destroyed by mid 30's Novak, i.e. Shapovalov.
 

Europa1

Rookie
Edit: I made a mistake - it was his 11th Grand Slam where he reached his first Grand Slam QF - I include the two times he lost in the qualifiers. I was quoting Pete Sampras from his autobiography and Pete had made a mistake, which I made as well!

I find it strange when posters call the young players "mugs" or when they lose early in a GS or other tournaments that they will never ever win a Grand Slam or become a great player - we could all agree that Roger Federer is an all-time great and it took him around 4 years to make it as far as a Quarterfinal - he has gone on to win 20 Grand Slams.

So my favorite player on the tour right now, Carlos Alcaraz, who has already made it to a QF in his 4th GS, he has time to improve and learn how to handle the pressures both physically and mentally - and so do the other potential future stars of tennis. There are quite a few potential future champions right now. Give them time, a few of them will eventually become Grand Slam champions!
So much for the idea that Federer simply relied on his innate superior talent to achieve Goathood (TM April Fool)
 

T007

Professional
Young Fed struggling through what is regarded as one of the weaker periods in tennis (2000-2003) will always leave me baffled.

How was it possible that out of Hewitt, Safin, Roddick, Ferrero, Nalbandian, Coria, Federer was the LAST to reach a grand slam semi? Like if you told that to anyone on TTW who was unfamiliar with the period, they would laugh you out of the room. And yet, completely true.

it’s not like he had any injuries that caused him to miss tournaments either.. so bizarre.
He wasn't mentally strong...lost many close 5 setters. Always faced redhot opponents in later stages of slams like Henman in 2001 QF was tough to crack for a player who has never played him.

Ancic in 2002 was a surprise but Ancic was playing very great that day.
 

tex123

Professional
It is not a coincidence that all the players who won Slams in the era of big 3, slower courts and slower balls were over 25 with Delpo the only exception.

Murray
Delpo
Wawrinka
Cilic
Medvedev
 

Tennisgods

Hall of Fame
Edit: I made a mistake - it was his 11th Grand Slam where he reached his first Grand Slam QF - I include the two times he lost in the qualifiers. I was quoting Pete Sampras from his autobiography and Pete had made a mistake, which I made as well!

I find it strange when posters call the young players "mugs" or when they lose early in a GS or other tournaments that they will never ever win a Grand Slam or become a great player - we could all agree that Roger Federer is an all-time great and it took him around 4 years to make it as far as a Quarterfinal - he has gone on to win 20 Grand Slams.

So my favorite player on the tour right now, Carlos Alcaraz, who has already made it to a QF in his 4th GS, he has time to improve and learn how to handle the pressures both physically and mentally - and so do the other potential future stars of tennis. There are quite a few potential future champions right now. Give them time, a few of them will eventually become Grand Slam champions!
Well, simple reason is that these guys have changed our expectations. There was a time not long ago that 6 slams made you an elite ATG.

Because of these three, that’s basically gone if we’re really honest about it.
 

clayqueen

Talk Tennis Guru
Edit: I made a mistake - it was his 11th Grand Slam where he reached his first Grand Slam QF - I include the two times he lost in the qualifiers. I was quoting Pete Sampras from his autobiography and Pete had made a mistake, which I made as well!

I find it strange when posters call the young players "mugs" or when they lose early in a GS or other tournaments that they will never ever win a Grand Slam or become a great player - we could all agree that Roger Federer is an all-time great and it took him around 4 years to make it as far as a Quarterfinal - he has gone on to win 20 Grand Slams.

So my favorite player on the tour right now, Carlos Alcaraz, who has already made it to a QF in his 4th GS, he has time to improve and learn how to handle the pressures both physically and mentally - and so do the other potential future stars of tennis. There are quite a few potential future champions right now. Give them time, a few of them will eventually become Grand Slam champions!
You shouldn't judge players bye Federer's low standards. :cool: Rafa Nadal is the benchmark by which the NextGen should be judged.
 
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