Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Federer finishes season off in supreme style

Roger Federer produced a stunning week of tennis to win the ATP Tour Finals as he defeated Rafael Nadal in the final with a 6-4 3-6 6-1. The stand-out match without no doubt was the superb semi-final between Rafa Nadal and Andy Murray as Nadal came through an epic against a determined and superb Murray, 7-6 3-6 7-6. Nadal however just showed more mental toughness in the final set tiebreak as he recovered from a 4-1 deficit to defeat Murray. The weekend match-ups just about saved what had been a desperately poor finale up till then. In the round-robin matches, only one match was pushed to three sets as the top four all qualified with complete ease. Of course, this made way for an exciting finale, however the round-robin stage was a disappointment with a host of one sided matches. The likes of David Ferrer, Andy Roddick and Robin Soderling failed to bring their A-game to London as a long, hard season seem to catch up with them. It also demonstrated the gap in quality between the top four and the guys chasing the pack. It suggest that the likes of Berdych and Soderling are not yet to take over from the current top 4 and that next year will be another one dominated by the likes of Roger and Rafa.

It was a superb victory for Roger in the final as he defeated Nadal in a 3-set victory. The first set was a slight anticlimax as both players took a while to ease into the match; it was Federer who made the crucial break at 4-3 before strolling to the first set. Nadal hung in superbly in the second set and showed more intent as he grabbed the second set as Federer went off the boil with his his 1st serve % dipping dramatically. In the final set Nadal appeared to be running on empty and Federer raised his game once again to stroll to victory and send a message of intent to the world number one for the upcoming 2011 season...

Sunday, 21 November 2010

ATP World Tour Finals Preview

After a long season for the Men, it will come to a climax in the World Tour Finals at the O2 in London. The groups look pretty even on paper with Group A containing Nadal, Djokovic, Berdych and Roddick and Group B being contested with Federer, Soderling, Murray and Ferrer. In Group A, Nadal will return following a one month absence and will look to put in a better showing after losing all three matches last year. I fancy Nadal to qualify here and for Roddick to upset Djokovic to reach the SF's. In Group B, Federer looks to be the favourite with Murray v Soderling being the real crunch match. Play kicks off on Sunday with Murray v Soderling with the final being a week today.

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Kim Reigns in Doha

Kim Clijsters defeated Caroline Wozniacki in the WTA season ending championships in Doha with a 6-3 5-7 6-3 victory as the tournament ended in style. After two disappointing semi-finals with second set collapses from both Sam Stosur and Vera Zvonareva, Clijsters and Wozniacki met in a high quality encounter, only their second following the US Open Final in 2009. Clijsters dominated early proceedings as she raised into a 6-3 4-1 lead. However, the world number one showed some real grit and determination to keep her hopes alive in the match as she took advantage of a dip in Clijster's game. A confident hold at 6-5 then secured Wozniacki the second set and she took the early advantage in the third set. However Clijsters stormed back and eventually was too strong for Wozniacki completing the victory. I think the title would have meant more for Wozniacki who would have wanted to prove a point to her critics; she is still yet to post a win against the likes of the Williams Sisters, Clijsters or Henin and that is a statistic that will have to change next year. She has made excellent progress this year and many people skate past the fact this girl is just 20 and is still developing her game. I believe she will get a Grand Slam next year if she keeps developing her forehand and her attacking game as i feel mentally she is strong enough to win one. Clijsters will be delighted to wrap off an injury-plagued season with another victory and if she can keep fit next year and develop some momentum, she will be a real danger at all 4 slams...