Why does Federer miss so much?

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Deleted member 391266

Guest
As a huge fan of Federer, I always wondered why he misses/shanks so much and has such a high UE count. More recently, I would guess it would be due to age/health, but in the past few years the misses seem to be getting more and more prevalent. He has the best footwork, so I was just wondering how this could be the case. Conversely, Djokovic and Nadal rarely miss, so this stat always stumped me. What do you all think?

Also, please try to keep this from devolving into a "he needs to switch to a bigger racquet thread." If you frame with a 90, then you will still frame with a 95.
 
Aggressive going for winners tennis is more likely to produce errors. Smaller frame racquet.

Compare that to larger frame moonballing that just keeps the ball in play and you got your answer
 

Bartelby

Bionic Poster
Federer's forehand technique involves a greater risk of breaking down - grip, straight arm and yes racquet size all contribute.

Backhand breaks down due to height of incoming ball, but it also does not seem as error free as that of a two hander of Djokovic.

I see Nadal shank a bit but he does have fewer errors and fewer winners.
 

Daized

Rookie
Federer has lost a step and when your game is basically about half volleying everything that comes at the baseline since you refuse to backup, you're going to make more than a few unforced errors.
 
As a huge fan of Federer, I always wondered why he misses/shanks so much and has such a high UE count. More recently, I would guess it would be due to age/health, but in the past few years the misses seem to be getting more and more prevalent. He has the best footwork, so I was just wondering how this could be the case. Conversely, Djokovic and Nadal rarely miss, so this stat always stumped me. What do you all think?

Also, please try to keep this from devolving into a "he needs to switch to a bigger racquet thread." If you frame with a 90, then you will still frame with a 95.

Thanks for that fresh sense of logic that is sorely needed in this section, and I agree with you.

As for the shanking, I guess shot making versus pushing I guess?
 
One more thing: you say the last few years his misses have been more prevalent. Fed's prime years are long gone and yes it's understandable his game isn't as pin point accurate as it was...you compare his misses to N and D...well, Djokovic and Nadal are still relatively young, at least compared to Federer, what they are doing now and the last few years Fed did as well with just as much, if not better efficiency. Watch Prime Fed matches that dude had uncanny accuracy and blasting power. Scary stuff.
 

antq21

New User
Federer purposely lost the first set in Rome so Nadal could get ranked # 4 giving him an easier path to the finals.
 

sepidoel

Rookie
I kinda feel that his footwork and reading/prediction of his opponent shots aren't as good as before. Perhaps his fitness (with his back problem) plays very big role.
 

TennisMaven

Banned
Good question OP, this is something I've wondered myself. The obvious answer is going for more leads to more UE. The thing is, it's not like a lot of the shots that Fed goes for are winners ala Gulbis. When Gulbis goes for it, he really goes for it, and it's either a winner or out. With Fed his UE's seem to arise in what appear to be almost neutral (although aggressive neutral) shots that don't really trouble Nadal or Djoker much. So why use them? Why not go for even more if you're going to end up with an UE anyways, might as well let the alternative be a winner rather something Nadal easily handles.
 
his hands and reaction time just isn't the same as it was when he was 25. he uses a very precise racquet that is not very forgiving.
 

PCXL-Fan

Hall of Fame
As the previous poster said his timing and reaction speed isn't quite what it used to be. IMO he should adjust his equipment accordingly to compensate.
 

RogerRacket111

Semi-Pro
He is a step slower. There is a big difference in hitting a shot when u get there and remain balanced vs scrambling and being off balance.
 

sureshs

Bionic Poster
Also, please try to keep this from devolving into a "he needs to switch to a bigger racquet thread." If you frame with a 90, then you will still frame with a 95.

Isn't that true for 95 and 100? And 100 and 105? So, head size should never make a difference?

There is quite a bit of difference between a 90 and 95, and it is not directly related to the size difference of the head. It is related to the volume swept by the racket during the swing, with the bigger head giving you more margin for error.
 

pound cat

G.O.A.T.
Lack of confidence or nervousness cause the musches to tighten and what would normaly be fluid strokes become stiff and wild hits and UE's. eg. Federer, Rome final. See also the Roland garros final when Coria could feel gaudio catching up to him and he started cramping for the last two sets and couldn't run. Gaudio won...clever guy he was the underdog and Gaudio orchestrated the cowd to support him as the underdog. Gaudio won....one of the few titles he ever won.
 
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mental midget

Hall of Fame
He is a step slower. There is a big difference in hitting a shot when u get there and remain balanced vs scrambling and being off balance.

this is the best answer i've seen. position is crucial to consistency. couple that with the fact that, as a few people have mentioned, he's probably just a touch less explosive (read: less racket head speed) with each passing year, and you've got your answer.
 

BobbyOne

G.O.A.T.
As a huge fan of Federer, I always wondered why he misses/shanks so much and has such a high UE count. More recently, I would guess it would be due to age/health, but in the past few years the misses seem to be getting more and more prevalent. He has the best footwork, so I was just wondering how this could be the case. Conversely, Djokovic and Nadal rarely miss, so this stat always stumped me. What do you all think?

Also, please try to keep this from devolving into a "he needs to switch to a bigger racquet thread." If you frame with a 90, then you will still frame with a 95.

Kahlz, Roger had always his share of shanks and mishits. But the Federer fans refused to accept this fact.
 

Bobby Jr

G.O.A.T.
....... He has the best footwork, so I was just wondering how this could be the case...
Simple. He does not have the best footwork anymore.

He is caught slightly out of position more than he used to but I'm still not convinced that's the only reason he gets into shank mode. When he shanks he tends to shank a lot in a particular match. I think it might be more a case of slightly overplaying. He is one of the freest swingers out there and, even when the situation is tight, he still lets fly with his strokes - his forehand especially. With the swing path he has shanks are just going to happen sometimes.
 
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RF20Lennon

Legend
He is slower, therefore takes the ball later than usual and as a result shanks. He's much more aggressive than Nadal or Djokovic which amounts to more error's
 

NEW_BORN

Hall of Fame
He is slower, therefore takes the ball later than usual and as a result shanks. He's much more aggressive than Nadal or Djokovic which amounts to more error's

I don't agree with this statement at all. You can still be more aggressive than your opponent whilst making less errors.

I think Federer shares the same mentality as you, that because he's an aggressive player, that it's ok to make more unforced errors than your opponent. When it fact, this is the very reason that he makes these errors over and over again in the first place, because he just doesn't care enough to work on minimising his error count.

The very reason guys like Nadal and Djokovic make so few UE, is because every time they make one, they berate themselves to no end and this constant self-criticism has honed their abilities to a level that is virtually error-free.
 

Jeffrey573639

Semi-Pro
Not my own opinion but I've heard because of his tremendous racquet head speed he generates and the small racquet, if he mistimes and/or has poor footwork, he'll catch it on the frame more often than most players. It wasn't much of a problem when he younger, more explosive and quicker but these days- losing a lot more than half a step and slower reactions on top of that is why he's shankerer on his off days.
 

jg153040

G.O.A.T.
Maybe because he tries to take ball on the rise all the time.
Or that he is watching his opponents all the time, what they are doing?

I know that in table tennis I start to shank when taking ball on the rise and when I'm watching more the target area or my opponent more than the ball.
 
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