How Did Federer Let This Slip Away?

WIMBLEDON, Great Britain

Men’s Semifinal:  [3] Roger Federer (SUI) vs. [6] Milos Raonic (CAN)

How did Federer lose this opportunity to get to the final? He had never lost a Wimbledon semifinal coming into this match (10-0).  His biggest obstacle in previous years, Novak Djokovic, was gone.  He led their head-to-head 9:2; however, he had lost their most recent encounter.  Did the pressure get to him? As great as Federer is, he too has shown that he is vulnerable, mentally and physically. Was there a lack of fitness due to his recent injuries and surgery and did that contribute to his defeat? All credit to Raonic who played his heart out.

When Federer won the second and third sets, I was convinced that he would win this match.  I figured he had to win in four because another five set match would be too demanding for his recently recovered back. He came back from two sets down in the quarterfinals against Marin Cilic.  If he wanted an opportunity to compete for his eighth Wimbledon title, he had to win this in four.  Raonic was not deterred.  Despite dropping the second and third sets, he showed his improved mental fortitude and tennis skills. He fought his way back into the match with ferocious serving and ground strokes.  He even showed us some finesse shots.  Federer inexplicably dropped his serve from a 40-0 position, an indication that he was not at his best.  Federer looked spent by the end of the match and it was sad to see him looking so defeated.

Congratulations to Milos Raonic on being the first Canadian male tennis player to make it to the final of a Major.  He did so by defeating Federer 6-3, 6-7(3), 4-6, 7-5, 6-3.  He played some of the best tennis I have seen from him.


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