Sunday, February 01, 2009

Off Topic: Australian Open Final

I watched part of the Australian Open final between Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer this morning. It was another classic final and if you have a chance to see it, you should definitely watch. Nadal won it in five sets, over 4 hours of playing time. That's after playing a 5 hour match just a couple of days ago. Roger was very emotional for coming up second this time, breaking down in tears when he tried to speak after accepting the runner up platter.

I have always said that Roger couldn't be considered the greatest ever until he wins the French Open - he has to win majors on all three surfaces in my book (like Andre Agassi). Well, Rafael Nadal has done that with wins at the Australian, French and Wimbledon. I still don't know if I would class Rafael as one of the best ever. I think he may have to win a few more majors on grass and hard courts.

Again I have to mention the announcing. Yes, my critique of the media doesn't only apply just to golf. Dick Enberg, the 'well respected' announcer tried to create more drama than necessary this morning. The announcers kept trying to make Rafael Nadal into an exhausted player because of his 5 hour semi final match the other day. But Rafa kept fighting and went the distance - five sets. At one point, Enberg even said Rafael was 'staggering' around the court. Not so. Not by a long shot. He was no Victoria Azarenka (who had to retire after the heat and a virus caused her to be dazed and stagger around during her match with Serena Williams). Sure, Nadal moved slower than usual. But he was not staggering. He was not dazed. He was not at any point down and out. And as for the announcers' claims that Federer now believes he can't beat Rafael Nadal - only Federer knows if that's true. And we'll see in the coming months how Federer does respond to this latest result.

Just to tie this into golf - No one can dare say that having one Tiger Woods winning everything is better than having a Rafael Nadal and a Roger Federer competing at every event for the win. If you're looking for competition and excitement - watch tennis. Or the European PGA Tour.

No comments: