Yeah, I had it. There's no more I could do. Snaps one shot, and then the whole thing changes. It's strange how it goes, you know, but it was a good tournament for me. Sure, I'd love to be in the finals and give myself a chance to win the title, which is not the case now. So I have to accept that and move on.
- Roger Federer after squandering two match points during his semifinal loss to Novak Djokovic at the US Open
I don't know why it struck me strangely to hear Fed say "There's no more I could do." He was obviously disappointed after losing a match he probably should have won but I don't recall ever hearing him sound so resigned. The Swiss always has a way of explaining a big loss away and giving the impression he could've won if he had done this or that differently. It seems he realized a match actually could be out of his hands. This one, however, was not.
The Serb was unreal on the first match point - one of the best match point saves that I've ever seen - but Fed had a chance on the second match one. He served smartly into Nole's body and had a forehand he could've put away, but it clipped the net and went out. Maybe he was already discouraged or feeling tight after losing the first match point. But really, there's no explaining that miss away.
Confidence? Are you kidding me? I mean, please. Look, some players grow up and play like that. I remember losing junior matches. Just being down 5 2 in the third, and they all just start slapping shots. It all goes in for some reason, because that's the kind of way they grew up playing when they were down. I never played that way. I believe in hard work's gonna pay off kinda thing, because early on maybe I didn't always work at my hardest. So for me, this is very hard to understand how can you play a shot like that on match point. But, look, maybe he's been doing it for 20 years, so for him it was very normal. You've got to ask him.
- Fed on the match point return winner by Nole
WhatEVAH. That is all.
[Photo(s) credit: Al Bello/Getty Images]