Google Down the Line!: PREVIEW: Wimbledon Men's Final

Saturday, July 5, 2008

PREVIEW: Wimbledon Men's Final

Roger Federer vs. Rafael Nadal
Head-to-head: 6 Fed, 11 Rafa
Last meeting: Roland Garros '08, Rafa 6-1, 6-3, 6-0

Weren't we just here recently? Oh yes, I remember it well though I'm sure Fed would probably want us to forget it. The two truly dominant ballers on the ATP Tour reasserted their places in the tennis heirarchy by systematically dissecting their draws with astounding precision. Top seed Roger Federer will look to make it six-in-a row, breaking Bjorn Borg's record, when he battles nemesis Rafael Nadal for the Wimbledon title.

How they got here: The top-ranked Swiss has looked in imperious form, even with a cardigan on, and has not gifted a set this fortnight. His latest victim was the resurgent Marat Safin, who never really believed in his chances and went down with a quick 6-3, 7-6 (3), 6-4 decision. Rafa was just as tidy in his dismissal of another resurgent baller, German Rainer Schuettler, booking his spot in the final by a similar scoreline of 6-1, 7-6 (3), 6-4.

Here's some of what Fed had to say about how Rafa's challenge:
He's made me improve, you know, just the approach, you know, playing against him. I was playing him quite differently in the beginning of my career. Well, the thing is also he's evolved as a player, started to play better. He's challenged me, you know, especially on I think clay for me. That was the major, major part of playing on Rafa on clay, it was the ultimate test for me, you know. I mean, I don't know how much he's helped me to play against other players. Playing him, because it's such a different dimension, such a different type of game, it's hard to really judge, you know. But I definitely feel like he's made me more tough, that's for sure.
Rafa has this to say about facing the world no. 1:
Well, always a special feeling play against the No. 1, and especially against Roger, because, well, he plays specially, very nice all the time, very easy. Sometimes you distract watching his game, no?

We going to be play the sixth final in Grand Slam, so that's a lot important matches. Some more Masters Series finals, some important the rest finals. So sure it is a nice rivalry because we are No. 1 and No. 2. That's the main rivalry, because if someone is No. 1 and the other one is No. 5 doesn't matter, no? But for the last years we did well, and I hope continuing like this for a lot of years.
Outlook: This match, much like the ladies' final, is a true toss up. Both ballers are playing near-perfect tennis, showing that they are still head-and-shoulders above the rest of the tour when it comes to consistency, belief and championship mettle. Though Fed has yet to give up a set this fortnight, he'll be giving up at least one tomorrow though I think three is more likely.

Rafa's game has lifted to new levels since he made the final in Miami, crushing the field during the clay-court swing and continuing his untouchable form onto the grass, winning at Queen's Club for his first title on the green stuff. He seems ready to take the top-ranking and that'll begin when he grabs his first Wimbledon title on Sunday.

(images via Getty)


  1. BOLD prediction there Rich!
    I don't mind who wins, they are both beautiful to watch...but I do favour rafa to take more of the spotlight and no.1 ranking! share it roger, share!

  2. I think Rafa will win.
    Do you also want Rafa to win or do you only think he will win?

  3. Me, I would love Roger making history because of his aesthetic and virtuous game.

  4. I've never been so nervous for a tennis match in my life. Rafa can do this. He can so do this!!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. to be honest kiko, i'm not really pulling for either guy i'd just like a really good match. but i do think rafa has the game now to take the title.

    it's all in how he handles the moment.

  6. FIGHT ROGER FIGHT....WHOO going to a 5th set. That was a great tie break, this is a GREAT MATCH! Two champions slugging it out!


  7. YEEEEAAAH he won!
    Sooo happy right now.

  8. What an amazing final!

  9. I've said it before, I'll say it again. Roger Federer will not win another slam. That was heartbreaking to see him lose. But Rafa's got almost 5 yrs on you, Rog. Everyone, group hug for Fed. Even if you aren't a fan.

  10. That's silly to say that Roger won't win another Slam. What match were you watching? He still has plenty of great tennis in him.

  11. I wonder how Rafa can live with the emotion , for me it's so much ... everything. So happy so happy.

    I thought this before the final, and still think now: Rafa can do whatever he wants now, I don't care if he wins another tourney or whatever, or if he even gets out of bed to play. HE WON WIMBLEDON. Time to chill ?

  12. greatest match, great win for rafa!

    he's the best baller in the world now.


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