On Sunday, January 30, 2012, T.V Sets all over the world were tuned in to the incredible men’s final in the Australian Open, Novak Djokovic seeing off Rafael Nadal after nearly six (6) hours of relentless, heart-stopping tennis! It was a riveting match between the best ranked tennis players in the world, it had everything, passion, hunger, blood, sweat, tears, screaming fans, strength, courage, will power. it was amazing, sometimes I grimaced as I watched both men grill each other non-stop. I could barely watch the fourth set (where nadal rallied round to win and tie the match)
‘How often would the Voice of Tennis have had to deploy his catchphrases, “Oh I say” and “That’s a peach of a pass”? It doesn’t bear thinking about. There were enough peaches from Djokovic alone to fill an orchard‘ — BBC Sport
20 years ago, tennis was a gentlemen’s game, nobody seemed to break sweat and the spectators toddled off between sets for a glass or three of Pimm’s.
These days playing long gruelling physically matches is the norm (the djoker played two 5 hours plus games within days enroute to winning the Australian Open). many players of that era would have frowned at some of the grunting, chest-pumping and first-clenching – the motivational tools of the modern tennis player.
However, like the millions watching on television, he would have been awestruck by the spectacle unfolding in Melbourne.
one news article claimed Djokovic eyed a clean sweep, he’s on 41game winning streak, who’ll bet against that him being the first man to hold all four grand slam titles since Rod Laver in 1969?? or even add the olympic gold? a few years ago, that was an extraordinary achievement, but following the exploits of the great Roger Federer & the marvellous Rafael Nadal in recent years, it won’t be much of a surprise he pulled it off.
One question keeps coming on my mind, How did Novak become superman? I realise Federer is Uber talented (still my favorite tennis player) and achieved a lot, he’s possibly the best tennis player ever. Rafael nadal just had to beat federer to become the best, he had the psychological edge.. those two dominated the game in such a way Sampras and Agassi never quite managed to do. we were expecting nothing of superhuman effort to bring down those two. But in a relatively short amount of time, it seems their monopoly has been broken, especially with the ease (or not) which novak seems to be beating nadal these days. how did he do it?
One metaphor that has been played out by most tennis commentators is the gladiator metaphor but when Djokovic was slugging it out with Nadal (or in the semi-final, when he was slugging it out with Andy Murray, in a match of equal intensity) it was the only metaphor that did justice to the beauty and ferocity of the man-to-man combat (at some point djokovic was bleeding) and the emotions it stirred.
Team sports are all very well, and have a compelling dynamic, but for the sporting purist, there is nothing to beat the clash of individual wills
At the games marking the opening of the Colosseum in Rome in 80AD, the highlight was a fight between Priscus and Verus, the two leading gladiators of the day. They fought each other to a standstill, displaying such courage and tenacity that the Emperor Titus awarded both gladiators (who were born slaves) their freedom.
“Two men fought each other, but both were the winners”
We curse sportsmen when they let us down, and understandably. But when our sporting heroes repay our loyalty with interest, we should not hesitate to show our gratitude. In a world short of feel-good stories, the script being written by the top men’s tennis players is the stuff of heroism: heroic ambition; heroic endurance; heroic passions.
Older tennis fans retain fond memories of the age of Bjorn Borg and Jimmy Connors and John McEnroe, but their showdowns seem insipid compared with the sheer pace and athleticism of the modern game.
A game that had previously relied more on grace than brute force grew closer and closer to boxing in timbre: raw, aggressive and physically punishing. The top players, whippet-fit, seemed to spend almost as long in the gym as on the practice court.
In the space of a very few years, we have seen Roger Federer scale unparalleled heights, Nadal eclipse Federer and Djokovic eclipse Nadal.
Like other armchair sports fans, I am already licking my lips at the prospect of the next Grand Slam men’s final, at the French Open in June. Nadal v Djokovic? Djokovic v Federer? Murray v Nadal?
What is guaranteed is a ferocious competition between two supremely fit athletes, pushing their bodies to the limit, pulling off incredible shots, giving no quarter to their opponent, trying to blast each other off the court with the power and accuracy of their stroke play – before embracing at the net, all passion spent.
Whether the next Grand Slam final takes six hours or a mere four and a half, it will last longer than any Hollywood epic – five-star entertainment, with never a dull moment, served up by a cast of two.
How often do 22 Premier League footballers give so much of themselves? Or deserve so much admiration?
Novak “Djoker” Djokovic is without doubt the man of the moment, he was recently awarded the highest honour of Serbia. the charismatic serbian who was part of the team that won the davis cup for serbia in 2010 has succeeded in putting serbia in the news for the right reasons. Novak is very jovial and is source of inspiration to not only serbians but up and coming sports men with his can-do, never-give-up attitude.
majority of this article was “control ceed” from a BBC Sport story of the same article
you can bash @MrTuneri on twitter for this shameless work of “copy & paste” Lol