Why a Roger Federer fan wants Rafa Nadal to win the French Open this year
Dear Rafael Nadal,
There are things that I have loved to watch in my life and a package of that would comprise of - a Federer backhand, a Tendulkar straight drive, a Messi nutmeg through pass and a Lin Dan net wobble (as one commentator named it).
As apparent as it may look, let me further clarify, I am a believer of methods than the madness, of poise and elegance rather than raw power. One thing that I hate to love is that top spinning forehand winner; that which brought down the likes of perhaps the greatest, Roger Federer, down to his knees.
I followed your career sincerely, not with interest but with fear and even a tinge of hatred as you stole one Grand Slam after another from Federer. I watched that Wimbledon final you lost . It was not the first time that Federer had out-tempered an opponent and certainly not the last.
We had all seen Roddick come so close and give it his all only to be outclassed by Federer year after year. I can't say that I didn't appreciate your effort. However, in all honesty I didn't think you'd ever recover. I thought (and secretly wished) that you'd end up being a clay court specialist. That you came back to another final in itself was a greater achievement than the title.
I hate you. For reasons a Madrid fan hates Barcelona, an Arsenal fan hates Tottenham and an India fan hates Pakistan, i.e. no reason whatsoever but so many reasons nonetheless.
When Federer began losing his magic, I wished for Djokovic or even Murray to teach you a lesson. We Federer Fan Brigade attribute partial decline of the Swiss maestro solely to you. You made him lose that confidence which produced impossible strokes at unlikely times. You are a killer of a genius.
What do you think would people remember more - your fierce top spinning forehand winners or endless baseline stamina-testing defence. You know what you did to tennis and us Federer-land inhabitants would never forgive you of that. You made it a physical endurance test.
You know I am jealous but you don't care, do you?
You know you were born to break egos and physics rules, to test endurance and character but you were unimportant to us and to a lot many tennis fans. The only importance in our minds was your role in defining RF’s legacy. Now when I look at it, I realize that’s enough to ensure you of one.
You have been injury prone lately, a trait that bodes well for my favorite player’s career. Losing to Andy Murray in clay was the last thing you thought would happen to a man, who at 28 is a great contender of the G.O.A.T. (Greatest of All Time) title. In an interview before the Italian Open you said that you were not as good as you earlier were but were content playing the game at the highest level.
That breaks my heart.
That also tells me that a revival is on the cards, one like never before, rankings would change and Grand Slams would change hands for you are the king of comebacks. You came back after that 2007 Wimbledon defeat, you didn’t give up after that heart wrenching loss to Djokovic in the Australian Open Final after giving your everything for 5 hours and 53 minutes and you came back stronger after each of your career threatening injuries. You made Federer and Djokovic great by testing their limits, teaching those lessons on determination and never-say-die attitude.
You are a legend of the game – not the game of tennis but that of sheer will to win. Give us the privilege to hate you once again. What was Batman without the Joker.
As much as I hate saying it, but I want you to be the greatest ever, now more than ever.
A RF fan and a fierce hater