1. Federer’s consistency and durability are amazing
Federer’s total slams will always be his most famous record but his streak of 23 semi-finals is arguably even more impressive given the extent to which it dwarfs that of his closest rival (Ivan Lendl with 10).
When that streak ended against Robin Soderling in Roland Garros last year, Fed joked that at least he still had his quarter-final streak.
With his predictably comfortable win against Stanislas Wawrinka, Federer surpasses Jimmy Connor’s streak of 27 consecutive quarter-finals.
Federer’s ability to even stay fit enough to compete at this level has quite simply been amazing.
He hasn’t missed a slam since 1999 and achieved that run in an era increasingly played on slower synthetic surfaces and in grinding rallies from the back of the court with heavier rackets.
Fed has always attributed this longevity to his attacking style of play. While it’s also a jibe at his closest rivals it’s hard to argue against his point.
Given the manner in which the two players ahead of him in the rankings play the game, Fed’s semi-final and quarter-final streaks are unlikely to come under any serious threat in the next…I dunno…ever?
To the casual observer these records probably don’t mean much, but to fans of the sport who appreciate what an unmerciful, brutal grind the tour is on the human body, they are another testament to a true athletic great.
2. Albert Montañes is probably on suicide watch
Ok not literally, but as if Albert didn’t already feel bad enough, Fabio Fognini has withdrawn from his quarter final against Novak Djokovic.
While Fognini may have cheated to gain an advantage, I’m sure Albert blames only himself. He choked and he knows it. For a player generally so mentally tough it’s going to be especially hard to take.
As for Fognini’s gamesmanship, well a rule that allows players to take medical time-outs in the middle of a game is always going to be open to abuse.
If you can’t complete a game then you should forfeit it. It’s that simple.
Yes if a player rolls his ankle and needs it taped up to continue it’s going to seem pretty harsh but it’s the most simple solution to avoid the sense that a player has been cheated in one of the biggest matches of his career.
You have to love the drama though. What a fucking match it was.
3. The schedulers are idiots
I made this point after round three but it needs to be reiterated.
For three of the last four days a match in the men’s singles draw has been carried over into the next day.
There were no rain delays, no freakishly long matches to disrupt the schedule and just generally no excuses for the piss-poor scheduling.
4. Will Juan Ignacio Chela ever win a major quarter-final?
The Argentinean has reached two slam quarter-finals in his career and lost them both.
He has also reached that stage of eight Masters events, losing every single time for a perfect 0-10 record in the last eight of the biggest events.
Given his record against Andy Murray, he’ll be hoping Viktor Troicki can spring an upset when the final fourth round match resumes tomorrow but all signs point to Chela making it 0-11.
He maybe a convicted doper, a regular match-fixer (ALLEGEDLY) and one-time spitter (ok I’ll forgive that one because it was hilarious) but I’d really love to see him break his quarter-final duck this year.
5. Eduardo Schwank must be one hell of a doubles player
After promising early signs, the Argie’s singles career has gone absolutely nowhere. However, recent slam results suggest he has the potential to make a really good living for himself at the top of the doubles game.
Schwank has now reached the semi-finals of three of the last four slams, partnering a different player every time.
What’s more, he hasn’t exactly been playing with renowned doubles specialists. First it was compatriots Chela and Horacio Zeballos. This time it’s Colombian Juan Sebastien Cabal, who has a doubles ranking of 100.
Schwank has a serious decision to make. He’ll be on the verge of the top 20 after Roland Garros and be eligible to play the biggest events in doubles.
If he does decide to concentrate on doubles and look for a regular partner, he surely won’t be short of offers.