The World on Time – Fedex

Now, thats not even a headline I thought of. Its an ad slogan for FedEx and since this is a post about Roger Federer, it just seemed kinda apt.

The US Open is about to enter its second week and as is becoming common (as opposed to boring), the guy to beat is this gent here.
fednyt.jpg

Its not surprising actually. Considering that Roger Federer has not lost at Flushing Meadows since 2003. At the finals last year, he had 69 winners (52 not including aces) to Andy Roddick’s 33. Leave out the aces and in the tournament he had 254 winners. Ninety more than the guy he beat in the finals. I’m not asking you to get on to the tennis court and try to hit a winner against Andy Roddick. I’m asking you to get on to a couch and watch somebody hit an impossible to reach, impeccably designed, piece-of-art shot that makes you gasp while you struggle to stay horizontal. Such is the awe. And then multiply that awe 90 times over. That many winners MORE than the next best guy at a slam.

Enough of me. I’ll leave it to somebody who knows a thing or two.

The most impressive aspect of Roger Federer’s ascendancy to the top of the tennis world is the way he carries himself as a champion. It’s quite unusual. He just lets his racquet do the talking. There’s no entourage at his beck and call. He doesn’t have a bunch of coaches and trainers micromanaging everything he does. Roger has so much natural talent, they would just disrupt it if they muddled his mind. He exudes energy, and you just know he enjoys the camaraderie of all his competitors. Tennis had lost that positive vibe over the years. His game is so spectacular and graceful—I can’t tell you how many times I’ve asked friends, “Did you see Roger’s shot last week, the crosscourt winner he hit a zillion miles per hour?” He has this amazing knack for raising his game just a notch more than an opponent. He never gets rattled if he’s down. You can only marvel.

Every time I speak to Roger, I sense no ego on his part. He asks me questions about how I prepared for big matches—Roger has a clear appreciation for the history of tennis. (Plus, these days, I should be the one peppering him with questions. He’s the big star!) When you’re talking to Roger, he makes you feel important—whether you’re a fan, an opposing player or an old geezer like me. People often ask me if Roger, 25, is the greatest player of all time. Let’s wait until the end of his career before making the “best ever” judgment. He should definitely be in every conversation. One thing is for sure: he’s the best player of his time and one of the most admirable champions on the planet. That’s certainly something worth crowing over. The beauty is, Roger Federer won’t.

Thats Rod Laver in Time magazine earlier this year.

Which reminds me, Time recently carried an article on a global issue. Five ways to beat Federer.
Not to be outdone, the New York Times has its own version. Beat Federer? a) Be Serious. b) You Cannot Be Serious..

Maybe I should have called this post, the Time(s) on Fedex

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