1. It was a bad match
There’s no getting away from it. The standard was poor. Nadal in particular looked incredibly nervous throughout and I don’t think I’ve seen him look that tight on court since he blew break points in the fifth set against Federer in the 2007 final.
Djokovic was solid but unspectacular and he looked nervous too. He won the fourth set by being less rubbish.
Between them they produced 48 winners. I don’t care how well they defend, that’s just bad.
2. It’s too slow dammit
I know I sound like a broken record but a match-up between two counter-punchers highlighted how slow conditions on Centre Court have become.
Forty eight winners in a four set match on grass is a joke. Get this: At Roland Garros, of the 15 matches from the fourth round onwards, just ONE had fewer winners (Nadal’s straight sets victory against Ljubicic).
Admittedly the Wimbledon final was a bit out of whack with other matches (emphasising the point that it was a poor match) but tennis is seriously messed up when such a stat is even conceivable.
It’s hard to know how the suited snobs at the LTA will feel about it. The slow surface was fine when Federer was competing for titles. I doubt they’re similarly enthused by the prospect of a Djok-Nadal duopoly.
3. Djokovic may be a nut that Nadal just can’t crack
Not a very controversial thing to say after Nadal admitted that his game doesn’t even trouble Djokovic but it’s tough to see what he can do to mix things up.
Nadal is essentially a one-dimensional player. It’s a dimension that will leave him as one of the greatest players of all time but his bread and butter is bludgeoning opponents’ backhands with high kicking crosscourt forehands.
Djokovic has a two-handed backhand so a high bounce is never going to bother him and his elasticity compensates for the reach advantage normally enjoyed by one-handers.
It’s not as if he has a weak forehand that Nadal can attack by going down the line more either.
I don’t see Rafa coming up with a new game-plan so he’s just going to have to keep doing what he does and just do it a whole lot better. Re-finding his US Open serve would be a good place to start.
It’s not going to be easy but you’d have to be an idiot to write off arguably the single grittiest competitor in professional sport.
4. There’s no disputing the number one now
Djokovic sealed the number one berth by winning his semi-final against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga but for many it would have been superficial had he lost to Nadal in the final given that he had never before beaten the Spaniard in a slam.
There’s no argument now. The Serb has been head an shoulders above his rivals this year. Eight titles, two slams, a 48-1 match record and five consecutive wins over his closest rivals.
Defending it all next year is going to be no fun but for now Djokovic is on top of the world.
5. Seriously Dijana, shut up
6. What does Mohamed Lahyani have to do to get a slam final?
The sport’s stand-out official has still never taken charge of a slam final and no one seems to have any idea why.
Since the start of 2009, Jake Garner and Pascal Maria have taken charge of three finals each. Even the dreadful Cedric Mourier has been given one.
Even if he is unpopular among the big-wigs at the ITF you’d think that taking charge of the 11 hour Isner-Mahut marathon would have merited some reward.
It makes no sense.
7. I pity the part-time fans
The people who only watch Wimbledon are going to have to wait another 50 weeks to experience first class tennis again.
That’s 50 weeks of massive chokes, malfunctioning scoreboards, bitching players, moaning fans, grainy streams, rain delays, glory hunting, bandwagons, injuries, gamesmanship and blatant cheating. Not to mention all the enthralling matches, athleticism and storylines that make tennis such a great sport. Their loss.