Djokovic blasts into Final


Originally published on: 10/09/11 22:38

As the first set edged to a tiebreaker you could have been forgiven for thinking that this match-up between Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer was going to be a bit subdued, with neither player wanting to take the risk required to break the deadlock. But that was so far from the eventual truth. Federer took the first set tiebreaker 9-7, but he needed 5 set points before he finally bagged it.

Federer then took the second set 6-4 after Djokovic had seemed a little distracted by a spectator right at the top of Arthur Ashe Stadium who had taken ill.

But in the third set Novak raced into a 3-0 lead before clinching is 6-3.

The Serb then upped his first serve percentage to 93 percent and took the fourth set 6-2. Federer was saving his energy for a fifth. The set went with serve until Djokovic lost his serve at 3-4. Federer had 2 match points but after a double fault he was broken by Novak who simply ripped two forehands past his opponent, that he said after the match was really lucky, it was a risk, but one which paid off. So the Serb eventually served for the match and took it in the final set 7-5.

A match that had started relatively quietly saw Roger Federer leave the court swiftly and Novak Djokovic celebrate with the crowd, when invited by on court interviewer Mary Joe Fernandez to do a little dance, which he generously did, asking the crowd to join in. The 25,000 people on Arthur Ashe may not have been cheering for the Serb at the start, but with his kind on court words about the US Open, they were certainly on his side at the end.

Federer arrived equally swiftly at his presser and candidly admitted about his feelings and how the match slipped away. “Well, I mean, it’s awkward having to explain this loss because I feel like I should be doing the other press conference. But it’s what it is, you know, I mean. Yeah, I mean, it’s the obvious, really. He came back; he played well.  I didn’t play so well at the very end.  Sure, it’s disappointing, but I have only myself to blame, you know.”

And about the sense, luck or confidence of those big shots on match points he said. “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”

When asked, Novak had this to say about his no-risk approach. “Well, if you’re playing somebody like Roger, you have to take your chances when they’re presented; otherwise you’re losing a match. I don’t want to say, yeah, I’ve been in control of the fifth set, because that’s not true. He was serving for the match. He was match points, and I could easily lose. But this is what happens at this stage of a tournament when two top players meet each other. Just a couple of points decide the winner.”






Tim Farthing, Tennishead Editorial Director & Owner, has been a huge tennis fan his whole life. He's a tennis journalist and entrepreneur as well as playing tennis to a national standard. He also helps manage his local club and volunteers for his local tennis organisation. He's a specialist in content about the administration of professional tennis and tennis coaching for all levels.