THE FEDEX JUGGERNAUT

In the British Prime Minister- David Cameron, Football star David Beckham, Tennis star Rod Laver and many other dignitaries, Great Britain hoped something great from this player. Andy Murray did his best. He battled both his countries expectation as well as his own form. Yet, Great Britain’s biggest dream remained unfulfilled.

It proved so near yet so far for British fans in the Wimbledon. On a rainy Sunday, they witnessed Roger Federer defeating Murray 4-6, 7-5, 6-3, 6-4 in four sets, much to the dismay of a partisan Centre court forward. A day of history and records Both Murray and Federer were being chased by history and records. Andy Murray was bidding for Britain’s first Grand Slam in 76 years. It was Fred Perry who won a last Grand Slam for Britain way back in 1936. Murray also became the first person to enter in the Wimbledon final for Britain in 74 years. The last Briton who played a Wimble- don final was Bunny Austin in 1938.

It was also Queens Diamond Jubilee; mark- years of The Queen’s reign (the Queen came ing 60 to the throne on 6th February 1952) and whole Britain hoped Andy Murray would gift the Queen the coveted “Wimbledon.”

Instead it was Roger Federer who stole the show and made all the records. By winning his seventh Wimbledon, he has now equalled great Pete Sampras and William Renshaw. He regains no 1 ranking and would break Sampras’ record of holding the no I position for most weeks. (286 weeks for Sampras and Federer is already 286 weeks) Besides he has now 17 career Grand Slams, 6 clear of his closest rival Rafael Nadal.

Patience and Precision Yet, it was far from a smooth sailing for Roger Federer in the tournament. Prior to this Wimbledon, for two years he failed to win any Grand Slam. He was defeated by John Isner in the Davis Cup tie. It was his first Davis Cup loss in 15 matches. Last year in the US open Novak Djokovic defeated him when Federer was 2-0 up and a point away lost. from winning the match, which he eventually

Even in this Wimbledon he had uncom- fortable moments. Against Xavier Mallisse he suf- fered from back problem and had to call medics, something which he done for the first time in his career. While in the quarter final, against Julien Benneteau, he was two sets and love down and at one stage just two points away from being elimi- nated. Yet of those any composer. his stages Federer didn’t lose

He changed his gear and put up a flawless performance against Novak Djokovic. Throughout the tournament he didn’t show much of an emotion. Neither against Benneteau nor against Murray when he lost the first set in the final. He moved smoothly, kept the ball in play and used all his variations. To be fair to Murray, he matched Federer stroke after stroke and never allowed any easy points. When Federer approached the net. Murray produced cross winners, which a packed Centre court crowd applauded with “wow” Murray defended stoutly; he had more aces and less unforced error than Federer. His first serve percent- ages were high and even the second serves were deep which Federer had to make necessary adjustment to play to his favourite forehand.

Murray kept the ball in play for longer period of time to wear his opponent down, a tactic worked against lesser players, but not against Federer. Federer cut down his unforced errors and played the waiting game well and soon it was clear Murray was the one increasingly getting frustrated. Murray has now played four Grand Slam finals and managed to lose all of them. A record similar to his coach Ivan Lendl had, who lost his first four Grand Slams and then went on to win eight Grand Slams. If Murray needs any inspiration, he can look up to his coach- Ivan Lendl Andy Murray, like Andy Roddick, has now lost three Grand Slam finals against Roger Federer. These players are good but the problem is that they played against a genius. Like any other supreme ath- lete. Roger Federer is selfish and doesn’t give anything away.

Woman’s Tennis

If Men’s Tennis is passing through a golden period, woman’s tennis is suffering from inconsistency. Each year each Grand Slam is producing new champions. Maria Sharapova won French open last month and completed a career Grand Slam, yet failed to go through beyond fourth round in the Wimbledon.

Champion Serena Williams, however exhibited ruthless power to overcome a stiff challenge from Agnieszka Radwanska to win her fifth Wimbledon. At 30, she has been battling with injuries and was almost on the verge of retirement. From there to win both singles and doubles (with her sister Venus Williams) Grand Slams speaks much of her character.

An exponent ist, of power tennis and a grass court special- she does not serve and volley that much. Instead she relies on her booming serve (she has 102 aces in the tournament) that sets up her to play both her strong forehand and backhand.

Serena Williams has now won a total of 14 singles Grand Slams, and combined Venus and Serena, they have won 10 of the past 13 Wimbledon singles titles and now five Wimbledon doubles championships. It is thus safe to say that past decade had belonged to the Williams’.

Sports true legend

Between India’s debacle in Australia, Rahul Dravid’s retirement from international cricket, Hockey India’s return to Olympic after four long years of wait and amidst Lionel Messi’s fantastic run in Champions League- one of India’s greatest foot- baller Sailen Manna passed away last month, drawing little media attention.

Once rated among the 10 best skippers (in 1953) by England Football Association, Manna rep- resented India in its first international outing at the London Olympics in 1948. India lost the first round match 1-2 against France, but Manna drew lot of kudos from their counterpart and subsequently received an invitation from the English Royalty. During that reception late Princess Margaret, younger sister of Queen Elizabet…

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