Next stop for Fed Express: US Open Semis
They said he has lost a step, they said his shots don’t lack the power they once did, they said age is catching up with him, but he silenced them all. Roger Federer- the man for whom even time stops reached yet another semi-final at the US Open. Federer, who holds a record 5 consecutive victories at Flushing Meadows overcame a spirited challenge from Frenchman Richard Gasquet without breaking sweat.
The new and improved Federer
After his dismal 2013, switching over to a bigger racquet frame, getting Stefan Edberg onboard his support team, Federer did one more thing that has enabled him to be the second best tennis player on the planet at the moment- evolve. Roger was always an attacking player but somewhere over the course of his 16 year long career that attacking style of play had given away to baseline artistry, but since 2014 the Federer of the old has begun to come back to life.
Federer took the attack your opponent’s second search approach to a whole new level quite literally, the 34 year old father of two sets of twins unleashed in Cincinnati what is now know as “SABR- sneak(y) attack by Roger”- a move where he returns the second serve inches from the service box. While this move may seem tennis’ equivalent of kamikaze, Federer seems to pull it off more often than not. It is this evolving with every game aspect of Roger Federer that has enabled him to still be a contender for majors.
An all Swiss semi-final
After years in living under the tag of “the second Swiss” Stan Wawrinka vs carved out an identity of his own by lifting his maiden grand slam down under. This year at the French Open he denied Djokovic a career slam opportunity. Historically Wawrinka has never had much success in the final Grand Slam of the year, but then Stan is a player who has battled the odds all throughout his career. He might not have had the best of pre US Open hardcourt swings but the man with possibly the most lethal single handed back hand in the game is more than capable of out muscling his opponent on any given day. Wawrinka now meets compatriot Federer with whom he won a gold in doubles at the Beijing Olympics in 2008 for a palce in the finals. He beat Federer and Djokovic en route his maiden title triumph at Roland Garros earlier this year.
Djokovic-Cilic to battle it out in the other semi final
Novak Djokovic who has at times looked below par dropping sets in his previous two matches has reached the semi finals at the Flushing meadows for a ninth consecutive year. Defending champion Marin Cilic will meet the World Number 1 for a place in the finals. Cilic, who won the title last year defeating Kei Nishikori in the finals is leaving no stone unturned in his quest to defend his title. The duo have met 13 times with the Djoker maintaining a clean slate over the Croat. But like last year when he defeated Federer in the finals, Cilic would be aiming to cause another upset to another member of the big four.