Sunday, January 29, 2017

AUSTRALIAN OPEN 2017 CHAMPIONSHIP

Here we are, once again at the start of a new year of terrific tennis!  Who is committed to great tennis?

link to the Australian Open!

We know a few players who are.... [drum roll, please] 

THE WOMEN'S CHAMPIONSHIP

HUGE congratulations to Serena!!!

WOW! This lady has made HISTORY!!!!!! She is the only women's player to have earned 23 Grand Slam titles in the Open Era, surpassing Steffi Graf.
  
AND, reached this milestone facing off against her older sister, Venus Williams. And look at how gorgeous Venus looks, she has held up so well as she struggles to manage the autoimmune disorder, Sjogrens Syndrome. Please click here to read about Venus's special journey to stay well.

Now, in straight sets, Serena tops her sister Venus Williams 6-4, 6-4.

sister love Scott Barbour/Getty Images
 Here is a 54 minute Youtube featuring the match, enjoy~





THE MEN'S CHAMPIONSHIP

Congratulations to Roger Federer!!!  He has not played a slam since last year at Wimbledon.  

And, Today Roger Federer wins his 18th major title, the greatest, the Greatest of All Time. 

18 time Grand Slam winner, Thomas Peter/Reuters
 Here is how it happens~

SET !

Roger handily takes the first set, breaking Nadal midway, to lead at 6-4.  Roger is dictating the pacing here in this set, easy returns, nothing too dramatic, keeping away from Nadal's punishing forehand rallies by setting up the points and getting to the net. Roger likes to win the first set, and here he does.  Although Nadal opened serving, by getting one break and holding serve you will take the set, and so Roger did.


SET 2

Well, Nadal's punishing forehand has found its way, regardless of Roger's song out there on the court!  Midway in the set here, Nadal breaks Roger early and has a lead at one point of 3-0! A nice place to be, and finally Roger pushes back but not enough at 5-2 now.  At least get some games when the going gets tough.  You can definitely see Roger is pacing and managing his energies here. He did win the first set, he has banked his win, his insurance for the future here.  Roger just dictates on his serve, at 40-15 now.  Really backs off Nadal, game Federer. Nadal is serving at 5-3, anything can happen here, folks! It is not a done deal the set will close here. 15-0. 30-0. Well, maybe. Nadal the punisher, Federer the artist. 40-0. Game, set Nadal. 1-1 now.

SET 3

Commentators the Brothers MacEnroe, are so on with their thoughts and observations, thank you! This is great, Roger opens the set serving. He loves this, you can tell with his ease, in seconds at 40-0 here. Nadal's inside out forehand, not so quickly, Roger! Roger serves from deuce court wide, a rally and a shank, 40-30 now.  A serve and volley on second serve, no go, at deuce now.Roger makes an error netting the ball, at break point now, pressure. Ace. Deuce. Another netted ball, every one makes mistakes! Another ace! Back to deuce. A rally and at net Roger nets the ball, AD out.  Let serve.  Ace again! Same spot.  Back to Deuce.  A four ace game in all. Okay, Nadal hits a long ball at baseline, opportunity! Fault. Both men are working so hard.  Nadal is after Roger's backhand, relentlessly, and Roger uses that bak hand hitting early for a low slice that Nadal nets. Game Federer!! And just the first game....

Wow again, Roger is using his angles really well and wins with a short cross court angle. Nadal has been netting balls some more. Serving at 15-30.  A lefty ace form the ad court. Love it!  30-30.  Wow, Roger wins the rally with a down the line shot after his shorter angles. The crowd loves him!  Break point. Fault.  Breaks Nadal! Nadal nets the ball, Roger is attacking by keeping his cool and hitting the ball early.

Roger has the heat and aces his first serve in the third game. Another winner down the line. Smoking hot!  Ace!!!! 40-0 now. In seconds.  Ace!!! Loves this AD serve.  Roger leading the set at 3-0.

Nadal is up to serve here, he needs a game in this third set. Both players have banked a set, so, not too much pressure, but certainly Roger has the upper hand with momentum here.   Federer holds his momentum at 15-30 Nadal serving. Roger attacks with a volley form the service line angled for a winner in ad court. Wow.  Okay, 30-40 now, Nadal fights back!  Great serve, 40-40 now.  AD Federer, huge forehand to the line.  Lefty AD Ace to the T. Fabulous, Deuce.  Roger hits long. Roger has fast feet!! He gets to a tough ball and returns for a winner! he is attacking everything. Way to go! Ace! AD Nadal!! Roger takes the ball early for another winner! deuce! Nadal wins a huge rally, Roger has to get the early point. Nadl serves and volleys, Nadal holds! He gets in the set at 3-1 now.

Roger serves and volleys on the first point creates an error for Nadal, 15-0.  So quick! 40-0. He has Nadal on the run and takes another game! 4-1. So much is in the shot making.

Nadal is clearly on the defensive, serving here in Set 3 and down 3 games.  Nadal dictates with is angles at 30-0 now.  Roger steps in attacking the serve, point to Roger! 30-15. 30-30 now.  Hits an other angle to Nadal's back hand, 30-40 now.  Break point for 5-1.  Has Nadal on his knees at the baseline, game Federer! Leading at 5-1 now.

Roger steps up to serve. Roger is attacking every ball that comes to his backhand.  0-15. Here come the rallies.  He is playing in to Nadal's strength. Not good.  15-15. Fault.  30-15, Roger at the net, ready, but Nadal errors hitting long.  Double fault, 30-40.  Fault.  Another short rally and deep angle to back hand court, deuce!  Ad Roger, serves to the T but out. Serves deep but nets a return, deuce. Fault, then hits long! Advantage, Nadal.  Serves to T again, Nadla hits high and long. Deuce.  Roger serves to the T, Nadal nets, advantage Roger for set point.  Fault. Pressure.  Wow!  Atacks with his one hand backhand hitting early, Nadal struggles to get to his own backhand while Roger gets to middle of the net, Nadal returns to middle of net and Roger uses soft hands to drop shot the ball for the set win.  2-1, Roger federer.

SET 4

All in all Roger is having a better day out there, more relaxed, more controlling the moment. Nadal opens the set to serve. 15-0.  30-15 now.  Roger is running so well, what are those sneakers he is wearing? So much of tennis is in the running, the leg strength. 30-30.  40-30.  "Roger stayed home," says a Commentator, 40-30, and now Nadal holds for the first game.

Roger is serving now. 30-0, quick points here.  Serves and volleys. Serves wide, and comes right up to the net, more the middle of the net than directly in front of the ball.  40-15 now.  Side to side rally and Roger hits another backhand winner from the baseline to baseline, no angle. 1-1 now.

Nadal serving and has a great volley he dishes out as a winner to deep corner of the court. 30-15 now.  40-15 now.  All quick wins. Ace! Very quick wins here, 2-1 in the 4th Set.

Roger Federer steps up, who will be the ultimate victor? A break!! Nadal leads at 3-1!  

He is up serving again, the crowd is wild, a lot at stake in this set! Nadal serving at 15-15 now, both players are tight and making errors.  Nadal corners Roger to force an error, 30-15 here. 40-15 now.  really cornering Roger. Federer's forehand is too good, he is creeping back at 40-30.  Wow, 40-40, Roger coming to net again.  Roger hits a backhand out, challenges, it was clearly out.  Wow again, Roger hits a forehand volley to teh open court for a winner.  40-40 here. An epic match, take two.  Advantage nadal, a longer rally....  Wow!!! Roger thought he had the short volley winner and Nadal beats him at his own game! Game Nadal, at 4-1 now in the Fourth Set. It is not over till it is over...

Roger Federer serves. What will he do? Conserve energy, or go for it? Or a combination thereof? 30-0 now.  30-15.  Nadal comes to the net to put away a weak high ball of Roger's, 30-30.  Rally time and Roger nets the ball. Break point for Nadal.  Ace! Not so fast! Deuce.  Roger serves and volleys at middle of net and forces an error to Nadal to hit long and wide.  Ace! Roger takes the game, Nadal still leading at 4-2.

Nadal up to serve.  Serves a body serve and Roger returns long. 15-0. 30-0. 40-0. Ace to the T, 5-2 Nadal. Is Roger conserving energy for the Fifth Set square-off?  Most likely.

Roger is up to serve.  He does not want to lose service, but will conserve to dictate the closing Fifth Set. Roger is replete with match experience, so much to really cause damage to an opponent despite his age.  15-0. Wow, an inside out forehand, 30-0.  30-15, an attack return from Nadal, a great short angle.  30-30, Roger hits long from the net.  Ace! 40-30. Fault. Rally, long and wide. Deuce.  Great serve Nadal cannot return.  Advantage Roger, a great wide serve Nadal returns too wide, game Roger! As predicted, 5-3, Nadal.

Nadal is serving for the set. 15-0. 30-0. HUGE serves! 40-0 here.  Takes the game and set!  Nadal serves to Roger's backhand and for the next 2 shots keeps on hitting to Roger's backhand and Roger nets the ball.

SET 5

Roger opens the set, we know he likes this. The planets are in alignment. Nadal takes the first point. 0-15. Fault. Rally. 0-30.  No long rallies, Roger!  Fault.  Roger serves and volleys and puts the ball away. 15-30. Fault. Nadal hits a early winner deep return, 15-40.  Roger hits seven shots to Nadal's backhand and wears him down, 30-40.  Fault.  More backhand attacking but Roger errors, game Nadal!

Nadal serves at 1-0.  Roger at net and misses, lots of hard balls form Nadal.  15-0. Nadal nets an error at net, lucky Roger! 15-15. Roger comes to net and saves a net ball to win down the line, 15-30. Roger chips a return backhand, then a long backhand, then returns short angle backhand for an early winner! 15-40. Two break points here.  Roger misses a backhand. 30-40.  Nadal fights back for deuce!  Both men are so determined.  Roger gets lucky again for a ball rolling over the net tape. Advantage Roger.  Nadal gets back. 40-40 again.  Nadal gets Roger again in the same spot on the deuce court.  Advantage Nadal.  Roger hits long, game Nadal!

Roger is serving now, down two games.  he knows the subtleties of the game, let us see how he works this.  15-0.  A brief rally,  The ball is in! 15-0. Nadal has two challenges remaining.  Serve and volley. 40-0 now.  Fault, serves to the T, Roger takes the game, stil down at 2 games Nada, 1 Roger Federer.

Nadal serves now, had a trainer come out during the switch over.  15-0. Roger hits long. 30-0.  Fault.  Double fault.  30-15.  Nadal has Roger on the run, but Roger turns the tables and has Nadal on the run, 30-30. Every point matters.  Great serve, a slow serve in to the  body, Roger nets. 30-40, a short rally, 40-40.  Roger is moving well.  Find a way to break back here, this is opportunity for Roger. Fault.  Roger gets up to service line for a line winner, using quick steps to get to ball early.  Misses a rally, back to deuce.  Roger hits long and advantage Nadal.  Great serve! Roger hits out, 3 games to 1.

Roger is up serving. Just hold serve. Aces are good.  Fault. Keep hitting deep to Nadal's backhand, and nadal hits wide. Nadal gets to net for a winner down the line.  15-15.  Roger places the ball where nadal is not. 30-15. Wide serve then hits to deuce court for a winner. 40-15.Fault.  Ace, game Federer! 

Nadal serves, at 3-2.  Loopy shots, Roger wins, 0-15.  0-30.  Another lead for Roger. 15-30.  30-30.  Nadal does not wait for the ball to drop. Nadal hits long, 30-40. One challenge left for Nadal. break point for Roger.  The crowd is wild!  30-40. Nadal serves and volleys! 40-40, deuce.  Advantage nadal, great serve!  Back to deuce! Roger hits a short cross court winner, another breka opportunity.  Wow! Roger breaks back! What a championship!

Roger is serving at 3-3.  Ace! Serevs a wide serve so angled! 15-0. Servs and volleys at middle of netto put ball away. 30-0. Ace! 40-0.  Fault. Ace! Wow, aces his second serve!
 Roger is leading at 4 games to 3.

Nadal serves.  0-15, a struggle here for Nadal, and Roger is moving those feet in quick little feather steps to put away an angle winner! 0-30. Fault. Double fault! 0-40.  This must be so tough for Nadal.  Is he tired? A great serve, a short rally, Roger pops out. 15-40. In the game.  A beautiful serve to the body. 30-40. nadal is a champion, watch out!  Fault. Roger shanks the ball out and high, deuce!  Fault. Wow! At least a 20 ball rally Nadal on the run and Roger places deep corner. Advantage Roger, he looks intense, understandably. A great serve! Deuce.  Wow, Roger is out-rallying Nadal!  Interesting... Advantage Roger now.  Oh my goodness, Roger hits an even tighter backhand angle and Nadal hits the net post! Game Roger leading at 5-3.

Roger is where he wants to be. Serving with new balls. Fault. Super return of Nadal. 0-15.  Nadal will not go down easily. Fault.  A deep rally and Roger hits long. 0-30.  Ace! Love those easy points. 15-30.  15-40.  Nadal was at net.....  Ace to the T. 30-40. Fault to net. Roger returns quicker, 40-40! Deuce!  Roger did the battle and got to deuce. great serve! Ad Roger! Championship point!  Fault, trying for the T.Challenge of serve by Roger, it is in! Anothre first serve, another challenge by Roger, it was out, second service. Roger hits out, deuce! keep the momentum, you have it Roger! Ace serving wide! Advantage Roger!  Second championship point, and Nadal has a line challenge- the ball is good and Roger wins!!

Roger Federer shakes hands with his opponent Rafa Nadal and kneels briefly on the court. A true knight. A true victor.  

How did Roger win? His service game, a big forehand, and a winning backhand, one handed. 

Seems to me, Roger sticks to a few basic principles, sound so simple?

Take a good look, a quick look at Roger's finest~

Roger's forehand, the best!


Moon, Sarah Moon

Sarah Moon Collection