Was the AO Final 2017 the most important match in the FEDAL rivalry?

Nadalgaenger

G.O.A.T.
Good point. Had Fed won this match he almost surely would have carried over the confidence and won 2009 AO, which would have been a 2 slam "flip." But their most important match aside from 2017 AO has to be Rome 2006. That's the greatest level Fed has ever achieved on clay and he held two MP's against Rafa but choked 'em both. Had Roger won that, he probably would have won 2006 FO and not have the mental baggage against Rafa. But it is what is is.
Yes, that 2006 Rome match on clay was an unbelievable level from Fed. And YET he didn't get the job done...
Still not sure that it would be enough for him to have rebounded and slain the dragon at the FO but it sure could have helped his confidence.

What about 2007 Wimbledon? If Fed had lost that match, who knows how bad things might have gotten? He might not have won the USO that year!
 

Phoenix1983

G.O.A.T.
But their most important match aside from 2017 AO has to be Rome 2006. That's the greatest level Fed has ever achieved on clay and he held two MP's against Rafa but choked 'em both. Had Roger won that, he probably would have won 2006 FO and not have the mental baggage against Rafa. But it is what is is.

Agreed on this, I still remember him shanking a forehand wide on match point. He was so close to being the best player on all surfaces, but Rafa squeaked through that match, and was a mental giant at RG from then on...
 

Phoenix1983

G.O.A.T.
Yes


Yes, there will be no end to it.

Thing is, with the Federer/Nadal rivalry it's a human drama as well as a sporting one. That's why it stands out from other rivalries like Borg/McEnroe or Becker/Edberg. Even the responses on this thread reflect the psychodrama- it's all about who got in whose head. And unlike AO 2012 which you could see as an amazing sporting encounter but not have an emotional involvement, after 2009 AO that wasn't an option. Whether you found it painful to watch and wanted to give Fed a hug or you found it unbelievably irritating and wanted to give him a slap you felt something!!

In 20 years time forums will be full of annoyed tennis purists complaining that Nadal/Joker produced better tennis and was just as significant a rivalry as Fed/Nadal. It doesn't matter - soap opera will always win.

Yup, I don't think there's been a men's rivalry quite like Fedal in that respect.

I would say Evert-Navratilova on the women's side is the closest comparison. That was often about emotion and wider personality issues beyond just tennis.
 
Yes


Yes, there will be no end to it.

Thing is, with the Federer/Nadal rivalry it's a human drama as well as a sporting one. That's why it stands out from other rivalries like Borg/McEnroe or Becker/Edberg. Even the responses on this thread reflect the psychodrama- it's all about who got in whose head. And unlike AO 2012 which you could see as an amazing sporting encounter but not have an emotional involvement, after 2009 AO that wasn't an option. Whether you found it painful to watch and wanted to give Fed a hug or you found it unbelievably irritating and wanted to give him a slap you felt something!!

In 20 years time forums will be full of annoyed tennis purists complaining that Nadal/Joker produced better tennis and was just as significant a rivalry as Fed/Nadal. It doesn't matter - soap opera will always win.

Yes, there will.

As soon as both are retired this section will get rid of the bots that are not interested in tennis which is the majority of the Nadal following here.

Another several years max.
 

mike danny

Bionic Poster
Yes, that 2006 Rome match on clay was an unbelievable level from Fed. And YET he didn't get the job done...
Still not sure that it would be enough for him to have rebounded and slain the dragon at the FO but it sure could have helped his confidence.

What about 2007 Wimbledon? If Fed had lost that match, who knows how bad things might have gotten? He might not have won the USO that year!
We'll never know. Although he did win the USO in 2008 after a tough Wimb loss. And in the semis an the final he played like that loss never happened.
 

mike danny

Bionic Poster
It was an important match, though not the highest quality one. That label goes to the 2009 AO final.

Wimb 2008 used to hurt, but I don't see it as big anymore, mainly because Fed now has the Wimb record and has won more Wimb titles than Nadal since that loss.
 

wangs78

Legend
Wimby 08 and AO 09 are the most important matches from Rafa's perspective and AO 17 from Fed's perspective. I think hard to dispute Wimby 08 though, bc it is still the greatest match in tennis history in my mind overall in terms of historical significance and sheer drama (Fed coming back from 2 sets down, the extended 5th set, ending in near darkness).
 

Artanis

Semi-Pro
Yes, that 2006 Rome match on clay was an unbelievable level from Fed. And YET he didn't get the job done...
Still not sure that it would be enough for him to have rebounded and slain the dragon at the FO but it sure could have helped his confidence.
I don't like playing the "if" game, but what's certain is that his confidence was good enough cu double bagel "the dragon" in finals the following year. One at SW19, and one at Hamburg masters on CLAY ;)
 

ChaelAZ

G.O.A.T.
It's such a shame Fed hurt his back otherwise would be an easy USO win and YE#1 in the bag

Or Fed back problems in the past, or Nadal and Djo issues, or Stan, or....

Thing is, while all take fitness and health seriously, and are amazing athletes, there are some uncontrollable circumstances that will always play a part. Biggest is health/injury, but with that is what Fed will be dealing with sooner than them all and that's age. Realistically, Fed will be out before Nadal and Djo, which will give them opportunities to stack up stats. With all of them so close in the records race, the back issue, even with a full clay court season off and plenty of rest time between, is a big cause for concern overall. It will be interesting to see how well Fed can do to finish the season. That will be very telling.
 

BeatlesFan

Bionic Poster
I think a lot of 2017 AO's importance depends on how the next few years play out. If Nadal gets five more slams and Fed none, it's not going to be viewed with the same level of importance if Fed gets 3 more and Nadal gets 2.

That's why Wimbledon 2008 is so much more important.
Totally disagree, we don't have to wait a few years, the importance happened this year. Had Rafa won the AO,it would have been 17-15, then 17-16 when he won the FO and right now it would be 18-17, a one slam difference. Had Fed lost the AO final, he almost certainly wouldn't have gone on to win the sunshine double or possibly even Wimbledon, since the confidence level simply wouldn't have been as high.

Wimbledon 2008 isn't even in the same league since both continued to win majors and were much, much younger.
 

AceSalvo

Legend
Totally disagree, we don't have to wait a few years, the importance happened this year. Had Rafa won the AO,it would have been 17-15, then 17-16 when he won the FO and right now it would be 18-17, a one slam difference. Had Fed lost the AO final, he almost certainly wouldn't have gone on to win the sunshine double or possibly even Wimbledon, since the confidence level simply wouldn't have been as high.

Wimbledon 2008 isn't even in the same league since both continued to win majors and were much, much younger.

Word.

That 5th set comeback by Fed has to be "the one" moment that "kept" his GOAThood legacy intact.
 

Nadalgaenger

G.O.A.T.
Totally disagree, we don't have to wait a few years, the importance happened this year. Had Rafa won the AO,it would have been 17-15, then 17-16 when he won the FO and right now it would be 18-17, a one slam difference. Had Fed lost the AO final, he almost certainly wouldn't have gone on to win the sunshine double or possibly even Wimbledon, since the confidence level simply wouldn't have been as high.

Wimbledon 2008 isn't even in the same league since both continued to win majors and were much, much younger.
Absolutely. And that's assuming that Fed would have had enough "mojo" to walk into Wimbledon and clean house. He might have been so discouraged after yet another loss to Nadal that he could have descended into a new psychological pit, similar to 2008 but perhaps worse since he would be Nadal´s pigeon.
 

Nadalgaenger

G.O.A.T.
No, Fed reaching the final after having such a long time off would've done enough for his confidence.
Losing YET AGAIN to Nadal would have been devastating to him potentially. Sure, he was 35 and coming off a long hiatus but people would always say that he was INCAPABLE of toppling Nadal in a big match. The win was absolutely enormous for so many reasons.
 

Nadalgaenger

G.O.A.T.
Definitely. It's the last significant chapter of the Fedal. It's the match where Federer denied Nadal GOAThood and claime his rightful throne. It is this match due to which the GS difference is unmoved at 3. The same difference it has been since 2014. It is the match we will remember years from today and realize how game-changing it was in the context of the GOAT debate. Nadal is not getting to 19. In fact he's not getting to 18 either. This is the match that has caused that to happen. There was an opportunity here for Nadal, that would have tilted the GOAT debate massively in his favour. He squandered it, partly due to the GOAT's brilliance when it mattered the most.
All good points.
So who or what is going to prevent Nadal from attacking Fed´s record? More wins by Fed? The resurgence of Djokovic? The emergence of a new great player to stop Nadal (maybe Zverev)? MuryGoat? Injury?
 

Fedforever

Hall of Fame
I think a lot of people are confusing CAN and WILL when discussing Nadal's chances of overcoming the record. Clearly he CAN but there are far too many factors involved to say he definitely WILL. At the end of AO 2009 you would have thought Nadal was going to sweep past Fed easily.
 

Maestroesque

Professional
Losing YET AGAIN to Nadal would have been devastating to him potentially. Sure, he was 35 and coming off a long hiatus but people would always say that he was INCAPABLE of toppling Nadal in a big match. The win was absolutely enormous for so many reasons.
Maybe, but If you look at Feds comments about the final he said he'd leave it all out there, which he did.
 

MugOpponent

Hall of Fame
Totally disagree, we don't have to wait a few years, the importance happened this year. Had Rafa won the AO,it would have been 17-15, then 17-16 when he won the FO and right now it would be 18-17, a one slam difference. Had Fed lost the AO final, he almost certainly wouldn't have gone on to win the sunshine double or possibly even Wimbledon, since the confidence level simply wouldn't have been as high.

Wimbledon 2008 isn't even in the same league since both continued to win majors and were much, much younger.

BeatlesFan, I like you quite a bit and generally agree with most of you opinions but my god I couldn't disagree more here. When evaluating a match's importance, I would say how would things be viewed differently with the opposite outcome. If Fed wins Wimbledon 08, then it's 5-4 now and really in terms of h2h, the perception of the two would be so much different because then the critics could say just clay, one surface yadayadayada. W 2008 showed Nadal could beat a strong Fed on his best surface. I think your Fed bias or recency bias is the only thing that can explain your opinion here. AO 2017 was much more important for Federer than Nadal. It stung for Nadal but it would have been a knockout blow to Federer to lose the match. Sure it would have been huge for Nadal to win, but he can simply make up for it by winning more down the road(and already has with two slams since that tournament). Federer wouldn't have had that option.

Wimbledon 08 is miles ahead in significance because it's Wimbledon, both players were much closer to their primes and it's widely considered the greatest match ever.I'm not saying AO 2017 was unimportant. I think it clearly was, but the problem for Fed fans is that Nadal can simply erase much of the current importance of the match by playing well down the road.


In terms of long-term historical context we really don't know the full importance of AO 2017 yet. Hypothetically If Nadal wins two slams next year and say avenges in Melbourne against Fed, then how the hell will 2017 still be looked at with such importance you place on it now? It would be nearly impossible. If Nadal wins three to five more slams and Roger wins none, it will simply be viewed as Federer getting a little back. If they basically break even from here on out or if Fed does better somehow then yeah it'll increase in importance with time.

It's one of their most important matchups but definitely not the most. Not even close to W 2008 a match that will reverberate for an eternity.
 

a10best

Hall of Fame
It probably is the most important because the odds for them to meet again in a slam semi or final are less with Stan, Murray and Djokovic returning. Then again who could've predicted this would happen in 2017.
 

Sport

G.O.A.T.
2010 was post peak Soderling and post prime Fed.

Nope. Peak Soderling. Soderling acquired mononucleosis in 2011, not 2010. Stop with the fanatism just to deny the fact that a healthy Nadal is much better than peak Soderling on clay. Yeah sure, Soderling was at his peak in 2009, and magically in 2010 was "no-peak". Fanboy.
 

KingKyrgios

Professional
Nope. Peak Soderling. Soderling acquired mononucleosis in 2011, not 2010. Stop with the fanatism just to deny the fact that a healthy Nadal is much better than peak Soderling on clay. Yeah sure, Soderling was at his peak in 2009, and magically in 2010 was "no-peak". Fanboy.
Didn't watch either iteration of Soderling vs Nadal at RG.
Can someone who did assess his level please?
 

Sport

G.O.A.T.
Didn't watch either iteration of Soderling vs Nadal at RG.
Can someone who did assess his level please?

Soderling 2009:


Soderling in 2010



The real difference is in Nadal's level. He had tendinitis back in 2009, that's why he skipped Queens and Wimbledon that year.
 

Fedforever

Hall of Fame
Didn't watch either iteration of Soderling vs Nadal at RG.
Can someone who did assess his level please?

I'm not qualified personally but the report here seems to come from a fairly neutral perspective:

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/...-his-2009-french-open-loss-to-robin-soderling

There seems to be a consensus view around the Internet that Soderling did play exceptionally well in 2009. Whether you think that would have been enough on its own without Nadal also being below par probably depends on whether or not you're a Nadal fanboy.
 

mike danny

Bionic Poster
Absolutely. And that's assuming that Fed would have had enough "mojo" to walk into Wimbledon and clean house. He might have been so discouraged after yet another loss to Nadal that he could have descended into a new psychological pit, similar to 2008 but perhaps worse since he would be Nadal´s pigeon.
Not sure about that. He had lots of mojo at 2012 Wimb, despite losing to Rafa in Australia in January.
 

KINGROGER

G.O.A.T.
Nope. Peak Soderling. Soderling acquired mononucleosis in 2011, not 2010. Stop with the fanatism just to deny the fact that a healthy Nadal is much better than peak Soderling on clay. Yeah sure, Soderling was at his peak in 2009, and magically in 2010 was "no-peak". Fanboy.
Soderling looked better in 2009. Seemed like he was post peak in 2010.
 

Sport

G.O.A.T.
Soderling looked better in 2009. Seemed like he was post peak in 2010.

Nadal was not at his best in FO 2009 due to some physical issues. Soderling did beat Federer in FO 2010, and he was 25. He just faced a healthier version of Nadal.
 

MasterZeb

Hall of Fame
11581834.jpg


Yaaas. Peak Brendan.

0ba490e30140451c646ea4d3a58fce71.gif


"Maybe I should call you a cab..... though it'll be hard to find one that'll go to hell this time of night" :D
Perhaps the greatest of them all
tumblr_mqywn2UMUi1s39hlao1_r1_500.gif
 

octobrina10

Talk Tennis Guru
I'm not qualified personally but the report here seems to come from a fairly neutral perspective:

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/...-his-2009-french-open-loss-to-robin-soderling

There seems to be a consensus view around the Internet that Soderling did play exceptionally well in 2009. Whether you think that would have been enough on its own without Nadal also being below par probably depends on whether or not you're a Nadal fanboy.

Söderling played exeptionally well at RG in 2010, he was too good for Fed:
_47972517_fed_getty512.jpg


Robin-Soderling--006.jpg
 
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mavsman149

Hall of Fame
11581834.jpg


Yaaas. Peak Brendan.

0ba490e30140451c646ea4d3a58fce71.gif


"Maybe I should call you a cab..... though it'll be hard to find one that'll go to hell this time of night" :D

I watched that movie probably a hundred times. 10 year old me was in love with Elizabeth Hurley lol

Always make sure your tuna is Dolphin safe!!
 

MichaelNadal

Bionic Poster
I watched that movie probably a hundred times. 10 year old me was in love with Elizabeth Hurley lol

Always make sure your tuna is Dolphin safe!!

Such a good cult movie, and it's replay value is through the roof. Probably seen it 100 times also.

(someone pops a cork, and Abraham Lincoln ducks and looks around) lmao! and can't forget the Diablos...

 

Fedforever

Hall of Fame
Söderling played exeptionally well at RG in 2010, he was too good for Fed:

No problem with that. My (non-expert) view is that Soderling beat the undisputed all-time No 1 claycourt player in 09 and reached the final, the next year he beat the (at the time) undisputed No 2 claycourter and reached the final. I think that gives him the right to have those achievements taken seriously and not have either Nadal or Fed fanatics treating him like he was some mug who got lucky on the day.
 

Sudacafan

Bionic Poster
No. Fedal rivalry was much defined by Rome 2006 final. Had Federer won that match, the entire history or trend of the rivalry may have been different.
 

Sudacafan

Bionic Poster
Yes


Yes, there will be no end to it.

Thing is, with the Federer/Nadal rivalry it's a human drama as well as a sporting one. That's why it stands out from other rivalries like Borg/McEnroe or Becker/Edberg. Even the responses on this thread reflect the psychodrama- it's all about who got in whose head. And unlike AO 2012 which you could see as an amazing sporting encounter but not have an emotional involvement, after 2009 AO that wasn't an option. Whether you found it painful to watch and wanted to give Fed a hug or you found it unbelievably irritating and wanted to give him a slap you felt something!!

In 20 years time forums will be full of annoyed tennis purists complaining that Nadal/Joker produced better tennis and was just as significant a rivalry as Fed/Nadal. It doesn't matter - soap opera will always win.

Federer - Nadal, OK
Borg - McEnroe, OK
Becker - Edberg, what??? Don't put that in the same sentence, please!
 
Totally disagree, we don't have to wait a few years, the importance happened this year. Had Rafa won the AO,it would have been 17-15, then 17-16 when he won the FO and right now it would be 18-17, a one slam difference. Had Fed lost the AO final, he almost certainly wouldn't have gone on to win the sunshine double or possibly even Wimbledon, since the confidence level simply wouldn't have been as high.

Wimbledon 2008 isn't even in the same league since both continued to win majors and were much, much younger.

+ 1

For all the hype surrounding the Wimbledon 2008 match only two claims stand out:

1) That Nadal finally could claim a win in the Majors over Federer outside of clay

2) that Nadal took over from Federer

The first has been formulated when Federer was at his peak and neither Wimbledon2008 nor AO2009 changed anything about it.

The second was more or less expected and only "the drama" added to the already clear development.

The fact that Nadal couldn’t hold on to his advantage and thus missed to establish his own era only fuels the myth that the match in question is of extraordinary importance when in reality the events that followed should be considered a terrible flop in Nadal's career.

:cool:
 
I'm not saying it was the best or highest caliber, but I do think that it may prove the most important in the entire rivalry.

Here's why: If Fed loses that match, he may not have even had the confidence to cruise through and win Wimbledon. We all know that Fed, even more than the other guys, thrives on confidence/mojo, and he was practically unbeatable at Wimbledon because his confidence was at an all-time high (or at least a 10-year high).

If Nadal had won that Fifth Set, he'd be sitting on 17 majors and Fed might be at 18 (or even 17 if he hadn't won Wimbledon). Nadal would be five years younger, would have had a commanding edge in the H2H (I seriously doubt Fed would have had the confidence to take down Rafa at IW and Miami had he lost the AO match). Basically, this forum would be an apocalyptic battle right now.

One final note, a certain legendary poaster with an iconic Sampras icon would likely still be with us had Nadal won that match.

Where's your poll ?
 

Fedforever

Hall of Fame
Federer - Nadal, OK
Borg - McEnroe, OK
Becker - Edberg, what??? Don't put that in the same sentence, please!
Fair point on that one.
I'm not actually sure there is an equivalent to Federer and Nadal in it being simultaneously a fantastic sporting contest and a gripping human drama! Someone will come up with one I expect but I admit I couldn't.
 
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