Sunday, September 19, 2010

Nadal is Great, but Federer is Still Greater

Jan. 16, 2010 - MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - epa01991675 Roger Federer (L) of Switzerland and Rafael Nadal of Spain chat during an exhibition doubles match to raise funds for victims of the Haiti earthquake, in Melbourne, Australia, 17 January 2010. World number one Roger Federer enlisted top players for the charity match the day before the start of the Australian Open, including Rafael Nadal of Spain, Serena Williams and Andy Roddick of the US, Kim Clijsters of Belgium, Novak Djokovic of Serbia, Samantha Stosur and Lleyton Hewitt of Australia.

I found an excellent article the other day by Paul Hayward called "Rafael Nadal Pumps It Up But Fading Roger Federer Is Still Grand Master." I think this is one of the best written articles on the greatest of all time debate, and not just because Hayward gives his vote to Roger. Hayward praises both Roger and Rafa, and although he believes Federer is the best ever, he has some pretty great things to say about Nadal as well.

Here are a few quotes from the article:
You are either a Roger Federer hide-out-in-the-mountains-and-defend-his greatness-to-the-death sort, or a convert to the gang that says Rafael Nadal is usurping him as the greatest men's tennis player of all time.
Look for me in the hills, because there comes a time when a man just has to fight. It's not just that Federer has won more grand slam titles (16) than Nadal (nine). It runs deeper. At the heart of it is how you see the game. Nadal is about as captivating as power is ever going to be. But Federer has mastered an art far harder than lethal counter-punching and beautifully orchestrated aggression.
 But he also says this about Rafa:
Disparaging Nadal out of loyalty to Federer ought to carry a prison sentence. There appears to be no crack in his dedication or humility. He seeks no immortality shoot-out with Federer, insisting instead that 16 beats nine every time. As a protagonist in the greatest passage of live sport this witness has had the privilege to cover – the 2008 Wimbledon men's final – he earns eternal admiration. Here is a modern star who measures his accomplishments by how well he is playing the game, not by how much it can bring him.
The article is definitely worth reading, so be sure to check it out here. And if anyone needs me...just "look for me in the hills." I'll be hanging out with Paul Hayward and the rest of the Fed fans.


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