Tuesday, June 2, 2015


Wow, Stan Wawrinka and Roger Federer, competing against one another at men's quarter-finals at the French Open 2015. This day it is quite windy, sometime in the players' favor, sometimes not. But of course all in the best interests of the game.

Roger is having a great showing but not enough to dominate like Stan the Man. You watch the strokes of these players and so subtle the wind becomes to test the fate of these two Swiss players.  More miss-fires for Roger here. Stan has a great passing shot for AD out, now Roger shanks the ball out and Stan Wawrinka takes the second set.  

The set scores are 6-4, 6-3, Stan Wawrinka. We are hoping for best out of 5 sets. Can Roger tie up the scores?

My goodness, I really do not want Roger to lose, but Stan is such a nice player to watch!

Roger, please get in the game.  Why do players shank the ball when really, all they have to do is push it back. In stressful times in a point, there is nothing shameless about a mere push of the ball. Of course, easier said than done.

Look at that wonderful clay surface.  I love clay, it shows the mettle of a player, the finesse and pull of the ball. Not so on hard court. There, you can bully the ball and slam it down your opponent's throat, no remorse here, I have seen it done multiple times, stand back, quick! Now!  But is a ball slam true tennis? Certainly a necessary part of the game, but not the whole game.  Impressive at first, but tiresome quickly.  Is there not any more to the game?

Certainly, and that is why we have this wonderful match right now between two Swiss. Stan and Roger both work that ball like the intricacies of a Swiss watch.

photo courtesy Gonzolo Fuentes, Reuters
Stan has stuck to his game plan, power shots with finesse. Stan quickly won the second set without much extra effort playing such is the carry over momentum of winning the first set.

The crowd is quiet, not really behind either player. So, French.

Roger becomes a sitting duck at the net while Stan passes him on the Backhand side. Of course Stan is next at net and easily puts the ball away with a tight angle.  It looks hot there. 

Both players on serve at 2-1, Stan.  I really do not like serving second, as second server you are constantly playing up hill, pressured to hold your serve lest your opponent win on their serve and thus be up 2 games, not just one!  

Tennis scoring is tricky, the more you play and understand, the more you will realize that the odds are in your favor if you take that first serve opportunity. If you break your opponent once in the set, the score will be 6-3. if you serve second and break your opponent once, then the score is 6-4.  You then have a higher probability of more game losses, so, yes, best to take  the first serve opportunity. In some cases, it can even decide the match.

Stan has a 130 mile per hour serve. 40-0 now. A comfortable hold for Stan now at 3-2, ahead only because he serves first in this set.

Watch Roger Federer serve, truly the best in the business. His knee bend is perfectly timed with his toss, so necessary for kinetic chain momentum. So many cameras in Roger's face, really ridiculous. On serve at 3-3 now.

Stan tees off on a flat ball of Roger's in the deep corner, need that spin, perhaps?  Roger does not have much momentum in this match, remarks commentator Brad Gilbert. I agree.  4-3 now, Stan on serve.

Roger is serving into the wind this game. Stan does make errors, but hangs in there for the big points. 30-15 now.  Roger serves wide.  Oh my, Stan has a fabulous forehand, now 30-30. Okay, a great serve, 40-30. Second serve now, serves inside and short and wide and Stan nets the ball. A tough serve to make, even tougher to return.  Roger isn't the Greatest of All Time for nothing. 4-4 now.

Stan's Forehand down the middle is heavy and deep, a true weapon.  Rally back and forth, 15-15 now.  Will we get a fourth set?  30-15. Ace. 40-15. Stan looks like he is wearing his pajamas. Second serve and Roger hits long. 5-4 now.

Pressure for Roger? Certainly, for anyone, but Roger is a pro.  He will serve and play his game.

Roger serves, his second, Stan hits long.  Another second serve, Stan returns long again. 30-0.  Nice hitting, 40-0 now.  ACE! Wow, we love you Roger! 5-5!!!!!

The French crowd is finally psyched, cheering and on their feet.

Stan serves. Wow, a great point here, 0-15, the crowd chants. Silence! Merci.  Stan hits a great serve. 15-15.  So windy, a rally, the wind sails the ball out with a tough miss-hit.  30-15 now. Stan has second serve, and hits long from Roger's return 30-30.  Let serve.  Wow, Roger cannot return that forehand serve. 40-30 now.  Fault.  6-5 now!

Roger serves and pouts the point away from the net. Roger puts away again at net..., now Stan does! 30-15 now. Roger succeeds to a tiebreaker! 6-6.

1-0, Stan. Cat and mouse.  Roger hits down the line Stan pops up Roger puts away form teh net to other side of court. 1-1. Roger gets Stan on other side hits from down the line, 2-1, Roger, the French crowd chants, some life!  Oh no, Stan gets the point, 2-2. Stan serving. Fault. 3-2 now. 3-3 now!!!

4-3 Stan now, and serving. 5-3 now, Stan serving, let. Oh no, 6-3 now!! Roger serving, 4-6 now. Deep down the line on forehand side. 

Oh my goodness, Stan attacks and comes to the net and angles from the net for a winner!

Stan kept his composure, executes his shots, powerful shots with finesse from the net.

Power + Finesse = Winner!

We love you, Roger, and we will look for you at your most favorite venue, Wimbledon.

courtesy sportinglife.com
Congratulations, Stan!!

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