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Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

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Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Thu Jun 14, 2018 4:11 am

Federer is perceived to have a more chilled approach to training, while Nadal as everyone knows is a real workhorse. However in recent times, when it comes to conditioning for 5 set matches, it seems Federer has improved as he's got older, while Nadal has got worse.
A direct comparison between the two is not really valid, although one could argue that the two main differences attempt to cancel each other out (Nadal game-style more energy consuming, while Federer is so quick between points on serve it gives both him and his opponent far less recovery time on his service games).


Nadal record in 5 set matches before age 29:
17-5: 77%
Nadal record in 5 set matches after turning 29:
1-6: 14%

Federer record in 5 set matches before turning 34:
24-20: 55%
Federer record in 5 set matches after turning 34:
6-0: 100%

For Nadal it looks like his stamina started getting worse as he approached 30 years old. Playing such a tiring gamestyle as he has, winning titles since the age of 17, perhaps meant age caught up with his body and fitness as he reached 30.
Meanwhile Federer since turning 34, an age at which most tennis players retire, has improved his 5 set record from when he was younger. A patchy 55% record has been turned into a fantastic 6-0 100% record. Perhaps this is due to alterations to his style, going to the net more in order to save energy? Or it may be he is working harder in training- an inspiration to younger athletes who don't give their 100% every day. Personally I think it is a combination of both!

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by raiders_of_the_lost_ark on Thu Jun 14, 2018 7:45 am

Federer is perceived to have a more chilled approach to training, while Nadal as everyone knows is a real workhorse. 

hahaha.. what is this amri.?  Do you really believe this? No one with a chilled approach to training will have any success in Pro level, let alone the kind of success Fed has achieved. 

Talent can only get you so much, with out extreme hardwork its useless.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Thu Jun 14, 2018 1:26 pm

raiders_of_the_lost_ark wrote:
Federer is perceived to have a more chilled approach to training, while Nadal as everyone knows is a real workhorse. 

hahaha.. what is this amri.?  Do you really believe this? No one with a chilled approach to training will have any success in Pro level, let alone the kind of success Fed has achieved. 

Talent can only get you so much, with out extreme hardwork its useless.
I agree, was just showing how wrong perceptions can be!

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by Tenez on Thu Jun 14, 2018 1:49 pm

remember Nadal saying he doesn't train hard, doesn;t go to the gym a few years back? Federer always said he was working hard.

SO not only your perceptions are wrong but so are your facts.

And not surprised Nadal isn;t winning 5 setters anymore...the game evolved and it;s harder and harder to keep playing his game over 5 sets. Whereas for Federer on fast surfaces at least, his energy friendly game makes the difference. Like it did in Miami 05 or Wimbledon 07.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Thu Jun 14, 2018 2:01 pm

Tenez wrote:remember Nadal saying he doesn't train hard, doesn;t go to the gym a few years back? Federer always said he was working hard.

SO not only your perceptions are wrong but so are your facts.

And not surprised Nadal isn;t winning 5 setters anymore...the game evolved and it;s harder and harder to keep playing his game over 5 sets. Whereas for Federer on fast surfaces at least, his energy friendly game makes the difference. Like it did in Miami 05 or Wimbledon 07.
I didn't say it was my perception, I said 'he is perceived', I've always thought he's a very hard worker!

Yeah Federer's energy friendly game has made the difference, but do you think it got a lot more energy friendly after he turned 34?

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by noleisthebest on Thu Jun 14, 2018 2:08 pm

DEC1M7 wrote:
Tenez wrote:remember Nadal saying he doesn't train hard, doesn;t go to the gym a few years back? Federer always said he was working hard.

SO not only your perceptions are wrong but so are your facts.

And not surprised Nadal isn;t winning 5 setters anymore...the game evolved and it;s harder and harder to keep playing his game over 5 sets. Whereas for Federer on fast surfaces at least, his energy friendly game makes the difference. Like it did in Miami 05 or Wimbledon 07.
I didn't say it was my perception, I said 'he is perceived', I've always thought he's a very hard worker!

Yeah Federer's energy friendly game has made the difference, but do you think it got a lot more energy friendly after he turned 34?

It has since he’s improved his BH dramatically.

So, not vulnerable in the BH corner any more like in the past...as his last 4 matches vs Nadal showed.

He takes it earlier now, obviously the larger frame helped.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by Tenez on Thu Jun 14, 2018 2:18 pm

DEC1M7 wrote:
Tenez wrote:remember Nadal saying he doesn't train hard, doesn;t go to the gym a few years back? Federer always said he was working hard.

SO not only your perceptions are wrong but so are your facts.

And not surprised Nadal isn;t winning 5 setters anymore...the game evolved and it;s harder and harder to keep playing his game over 5 sets. Whereas for Federer on fast surfaces at least, his energy friendly game makes the difference. Like it did in Miami 05 or Wimbledon 07.
I didn't say it was my perception, I said 'he is perceived', I've always thought he's a very hard worker!

Yeah Federer's energy friendly game has made the difference, but do you think it got a lot more energy friendly after he turned 34?

After he turned 34, his loss of energy was probably compensated by more powerful shots, shorter points, better serve. But most importantly, from 34 onwards he was cutting through the field thanks to his new racquet with more ease than in his hey days. Problem is that he bumped on a very good Djoko on key occasions at the end of tournaments, that's where his age showed most.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Thu Jun 14, 2018 2:29 pm

Yeah but when you win in 5 sets, that means you've shared the first 4 sets 2-2. So it can't just be about his game/ opponent's level- as they were close enough to share the first 4 sets- and then 5th set Fed has 100% record.

I think it's a combination of him making slight changes to his game to make it more energy efficient, and perhaps working harder on his fitness during his 6 months off before the comeback.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by Tenez on Thu Jun 14, 2018 2:36 pm

DEC1M7 wrote:Yeah but when you win in 5 sets, that means you've shared the first 4 sets 2-2. So it can't just be about his game/ opponent's level- as they were close enough to share the first 4 sets- and then 5th set Fed has 100% record.

I think it's a combination of him making slight changes to his game to make it more energy efficient, and perhaps working harder on his fitness during his 6 months off before the comeback.

Actually - I think Federer looks more fragile than ever to me. If anything he gets to 5 sets cause he has drops of energy or fitness...and manages to make the difference when it gets tense and his opponents are nervous in the 5th like his last 2 AOs.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Thu Jun 14, 2018 3:05 pm

Well, if you present it like that, perhaps his 100% record in 5th set is actually evidence he doesn't have good stamina- an interesting take!

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by noleisthebest on Thu Jun 14, 2018 3:11 pm

DEC1M7 wrote:Well, if you present it like that, perhaps his 100% record in 5th set is actually evidence he doesn't have good stamina- interesting!
Federer in the fifth set will have lost about 30-40% less energy than Nadal simply because he takes the ball early and does not muscle the ball like Nadal.

If Federer played his shots like Nadal he couldn’t last one set probably at 36-37.

You need to understand the basics of energy consumption in tennis to be able to compare stamina in players, it’s not as simple and metrical as you see it.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Thu Jun 14, 2018 3:19 pm

If you read the OP I said that a direct comparison between Nadal and Fed is flawed.
It's the fact that at certain ages their respective records turned which caught my eye.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by bogbrush on Thu Jun 14, 2018 4:40 pm

Isn't a possible explanation that Federer has been reducing points length? This was especially true at both recent AO, where he was 4-0 in 5 setters that didn't last all that long all considered.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Thu Jun 14, 2018 5:01 pm

bogbrush wrote:Isn't a possible explanation that Federer has been reducing points length?
Yeah, as I said in the OP that is one of the factors in my opinion.
It must be noted though that even before he was 34, it's not like Federer engaged in longer rallies, he was still a very attacking player. I'll see if I can find some stats to how significant the change is.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Thu Jun 14, 2018 5:02 pm

Normally when someone turns 34, you'd expect their stamina to get worse.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by bogbrush on Fri Jun 15, 2018 12:03 am

It probably has.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by Tenez on Fri Jun 15, 2018 12:12 am

Atheletes usually run longer as they get older. Gebrelasie is the typical example. Cycling is full of champions over 30.

Stamina is not so much the issue....it's the recovering time. From my experience the pain comes the following day..not while excercising.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Fri Jun 15, 2018 12:39 am

bogbrush wrote:It probably has.
Possible, but what are you basing that on?

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Fri Jun 15, 2018 12:50 am

Tenez wrote:Atheletes usually run longer as they get older. Gebrelasie is the typical example. Cycling is full of champions over 30.

Stamina is not so much the issue....it's the recovering time. From my experience the pain comes the following day..not while excercising.
Recovery time is an interesting one. Federer did play 3 5 setters in the space of 4 matches, with a one day break. So I think the one day break was sufficient there.
In fact perhaps even a one day break is not needed.

Interesting to look at his run in Miami 2017:

QF vs Berdych was 6-2 3-6 7-6 against Berdych- Fed saved 2 match points in deciding set TB.
SF vs Kyrgios was 7-6 6-7 7-6- obviously the maximum number of games that can be played in a best of 3. 3 hours 11 minute match.
Then he played fantastically well in the final against Rafa. As you've said yourself, fatigue affects precision, but Federer's precision with his shots was getting better as the tournament went on and during the matches. So maybe he's not as fragile as you think?
He even said against Berdych that he had more energy in the third set than in the second and wasn't tired at the end of the match. https://twitter.com/vgibertini/status/847579039992696833


Last edited by DEC1M7 on Fri Jun 15, 2018 11:11 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Correction: Stat about recovery time was not right)

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by barrystar on Fri Jun 15, 2018 10:01 am

It's worth looking at the wins/losses to see how 'significant' they are:

Fed's wins were 3 at AO 2017 (Nishkori, Wawrinka, Nadal), 2 at USO 2017 (Tiafoe Youzny), and 1 at AO 2018 (Cilic).  The USO wins were in part down to lesser players taking an injured Fed further than they ordinarily would, otherwise it looks like his improved technique and new racquet have helped him if he has to last the distance.

Nadal's losses were at AO 2016, 2017 & 2018 (Verdasco, Federer, & Cilic ret in 5th); W 2017 (Muller), USO 2015 & 2016 (Fognini & Pouille).

Nadal has always been streaky, particularly away from clay.  He was at a particular low during 2015-2016 and he was got by neo Fed in 2017 before suffering on HC during 2018.  He has seemed to extract the max for patches of a year or so and then paid for it (e.g. RG 2013-2014 he was in 4/5 Slam finals and won 3; then he had a poor 2015-2016; then the resurgence from AO 2017-RG 2018 when he has been in 4/6 slam finals winning 3).  The interruptions seem to coincide with physical problems, especially away from high bouncing surfaces - and in so far as this is caused by knees they are not likely to improve with age.

As others have said, I'm increasingly of the view that he's unlikely to attend Wimbledon this year.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by luvsports! on Fri Jun 15, 2018 10:44 am

Really good find, Decima.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Fri Jun 15, 2018 10:50 am

luvsports! wrote:Really good find, Decima.
Thank you Thumbs Up
Saw some of your articles you linked on the forum, great quality as usual, keep it up Bubbly

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by luvsports! on Fri Jun 15, 2018 11:12 am

Cheers bud. How's uni?

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Fri Jun 15, 2018 11:19 am

luvsports! wrote:Cheers bud. How's uni?
Finished my intercalated BSC a few weeks ago, really enjoyed it, but only one more week of holiday left and fifth year starts. Got to the stage where my holidays are so short they don't even extend to the start of Wimbledon- but oh well!

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Fri Jun 15, 2018 11:27 am

barrystar wrote:It's worth looking at the wins/losses to see how 'significant' they are:

Fed's wins were 3 at AO 2017 (Nishkori, Wawrinka, Nadal), 2 at USO 2017 (Tiafoe Youzny), and 1 at AO 2018 (Cilic).  The USO wins were in part down to lesser players taking an injured Fed further than they ordinarily would, otherwise it looks like his improved technique and new racquet have helped him if he has to last the distance.

Nadal's losses were at AO 2016, 2017 & 2018 (Verdasco, Federer, & Cilic ret in 5th); W 2017 (Muller), USO 2015 & 2016 (Fognini & Pouille).

Nadal has always been streaky, particularly away from clay.  He was at a particular low during 2015-2016 and he was got by neo Fed in 2017 before suffering on HC during 2018.  He has seemed to extract the max for patches of a year or so and then paid for it (e.g. RG 2013-2014 he was in 4/5 Slam finals and won 3; then he had a poor 2015-2016; then the resurgence from AO 2017-RG 2018 when he has been in 4/6 slam finals winning 3).  The interruptions seem to coincide with physical problems, especially away from high bouncing surfaces - and in so far as this is caused by knees they are not likely to improve with age.

As others have said, I'm increasingly of the view that he's unlikely to attend Wimbledon this year.

Interesting post, and yeah I agree with a lot of that. It is true that in 2015-16 Nadal's confidence was very low. But at the same time as I said earlier on the thread, and I know it's stating the obvious, a 5 setter means the first 4 sets were split- so the level of both players is relevant but only to an extent. There's a pattern that when Nadal is winning 50% of the first 4 sets, he then wins 14% of the 5th set, that's the cause for concern.
And Fed since 2017, 50% of first 4 sets leads to 100% of 5th set- that's handy. Before 2017 he had some time off as well, perhaps that time away from tennis helped him stay fresh? Perhaps he realised the importance of cardio work and spent more time on the treadmill.
From his quote from his Miami QF where he went to a deciding set TB, he said he felt more energy in the 3rd set than 2nd set which is a remarkable thing for a 34yo to say. Bear in mind Tenez said that when Federer was 30 in 2011 he got tired after 7 games and thus lost to Nadal in the French Open final.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by Tenez on Fri Jun 15, 2018 11:51 am

DEC1M7 wrote:...There's a pattern that when Nadal is winning 50% of the first 4 sets, he then wins 14% of the 5th set, that's the cause for concern.

But frankly this is not surprising at 32. He has this game purely based on fitness and more importantly trying to bluff that fitness. I have been talking about that bluff for a while and those stats support my point.

He gives 100% on every point and wants to make everybody believe he can go on for ever. We know he cannot and has serious dips. The first to expose them was Djokovic post 2010. But already when he was younger he was hitting the wall in those 5th. Versus Fed or Coria....(though Coria collapsed when he thought he had finally the better of him in the 5th (monaco?)).

Now at 32, I'd say he has very little chance to win those 5 setters. His shots get shorter and is forced to do more running. He was Lucky in AO2017 that Zverev was still pretty young and Dimi..being Dimi will be more nervous.

Against Federer, he was lucky Fed was really tired and probably injured otherwise he may not have won a set.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by luvsports! on Fri Jun 15, 2018 11:58 am

DEC1M7 wrote:
luvsports! wrote:Cheers bud. How's uni?
Finished my intercalated BSC a few weeks ago, really enjoyed it, but only one more week of holiday left and fifth year starts. Got to the stage where my holidays are so short they don't even extend to the start of Wimbledon- but oh well!

Gluck boyo! Miss Luvsports! has just started her fifth year of veterinary. You poor things.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by naxroy on Fri Jun 15, 2018 11:59 am

that australian open of 217 was really nice, great level from both

amazing 5th set by roger

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Fri Jun 15, 2018 1:04 pm

luvsports! wrote:
DEC1M7 wrote:
luvsports! wrote:Cheers bud. How's uni?
Finished my intercalated BSC a few weeks ago, really enjoyed it, but only one more week of holiday left and fifth year starts. Got to the stage where my holidays are so short they don't even extend to the start of Wimbledon- but oh well!

Gluck boyo! Miss Luvsports! has just started her fifth year of veterinary. You poor things.
Thanks! It's never ending Whistle

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Fri Jun 15, 2018 1:04 pm

Tenez wrote:

But frankly this is not surprising at 32. He has this game purely based on fitness and more importantly trying to bluff that fitness. I have been talking about that bluff for a while and those stats support my point.
That's incredible, his whole game is based on fitness, but now he's 32 he has to bluff his fitness. So his whole game is based on a bluff. Bluffed his way to number 1!

Tenez wrote:
Against Federer, he was lucky Fed was really tired and probably injured otherwise he may not have won a set.  
Oh no! I hope Federer has recovered from this 'probable injury'.

You spend 50% of your time moaning about Nadal fans and injury excuses, and the other 50% making up injuries on the fly.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by bogbrush on Fri Jun 15, 2018 1:04 pm

DEC1M7 wrote:
bogbrush wrote:It probably has.
Possible, but what are you basing that on?
On the choice he has made to shorten rallies dramatically and limit the time he spends on Court.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Fri Jun 15, 2018 1:08 pm

bogbrush wrote:
DEC1M7 wrote:
bogbrush wrote:It probably has.
Possible, but what are you basing that on?
On the choice he has made to shorten rallies dramatically and limit the time he spends on Court.
Shorten rallies- yes I agree with you and made that point myself. Dramatically? I'm not so sure. He was always an attacking player, I don't think the difference is as stark as you think. Plus his backhand is less prone to UEs now, which would make rallies longer.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by barrystar on Fri Jun 15, 2018 1:22 pm

DEC1M7 wrote:
bogbrush wrote:
DEC1M7 wrote:
bogbrush wrote:It probably has.
Possible, but what are you basing that on?
On the choice he has made to shorten rallies dramatically and limit the time he spends on Court.
Shorten rallies- yes I agree with you and made that point myself. Dramatically? I'm not so sure. He was always an attacking player, I don't think the difference is as stark as you think. Plus his backhand is less prone to UEs now, which would make rallies longer.

Doesn't he come over the backhand more often now - the slices were rarely out-and-out winners?

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by Tenez on Fri Jun 15, 2018 1:25 pm

DEC1M7 wrote:
bogbrush wrote:
DEC1M7 wrote:
bogbrush wrote:It probably has.
Possible, but what are you basing that on?
On the choice he has made to shorten rallies dramatically and limit the time he spends on Court.
Shorten rallies- yes I agree with you and made that point myself. Dramatically? I'm not so sure. He was always an attacking player, I don't think the difference is as stark as you think. Plus his backhand is less prone to UEs now, which would make rallies longer.

Fed was an attacking player but because he had no powerful BH he had to run a lot more to protect it and more so the fact that it was easier to attack that BH which Nadal enjoyed for many years. That meant that Federer had to cover a lot more ground, often as much if not more than Nadal.
Since the larger racquet, Federer takes much more risk from his BH and allows him to dictate more than being dictated.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Fri Jun 15, 2018 1:28 pm

barrystar wrote:
DEC1M7 wrote:
bogbrush wrote:
DEC1M7 wrote:
bogbrush wrote:It probably has.
Possible, but what are you basing that on?
On the choice he has made to shorten rallies dramatically and limit the time he spends on Court.
Shorten rallies- yes I agree with you and made that point myself. Dramatically? I'm not so sure. He was always an attacking player, I don't think the difference is as stark as you think. Plus his backhand is less prone to UEs now, which would make rallies longer.

Doesn't he come over the backhand more often now - the slices were rarely out-and-out winners?
True, but what percentage of his backhands were slices? Del Potro was at 25% at this year's French Open, so I doubt Fed aged 20-33 would average any more than 10%. That has likely come down- but by how much? And is it significant? Wish we had some raw data!

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by Tenez on Fri Jun 15, 2018 1:31 pm

DEC1M7 wrote:
Tenez wrote:

But frankly this is not surprising at 32. He has this game purely based on fitness and more importantly trying to bluff that fitness. I have been talking about that bluff for a while and those stats support my point.
That's incredible, his whole game is based on fitness, but now he's 32 he has to bluff his fitness. So his whole game is based on a bluff. Bluffed his way to number 1!

Tenez wrote:
Against Federer, he was lucky Fed was really tired and probably injured otherwise he may not have won a set.  
Oh no! I hope Federer has recovered from this 'probable injury'.

You spend 50% of your time moaning about Nadal fans and injury excuses, and the other 50% making up injuries on the fly.

He always bluffed his fitness. It starts at the toss of teh coin, when he keeps jumping in front of his opponent. But he has ran out of steam a few times but then comes up with MTOs like he did v PHM.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by barrystar on Fri Jun 15, 2018 1:53 pm

Tenez wrote:
DEC1M7 wrote:
bogbrush wrote:
DEC1M7 wrote:
bogbrush wrote:It probably has.
Possible, but what are you basing that on?
On the choice he has made to shorten rallies dramatically and limit the time he spends on Court.
Shorten rallies- yes I agree with you and made that point myself. Dramatically? I'm not so sure. He was always an attacking player, I don't think the difference is as stark as you think. Plus his backhand is less prone to UEs now, which would make rallies longer.

Fed was an attacking player but because he had no powerful BH he had to run a lot more to protect it and more so the fact that it was easier to attack that BH which Nadal enjoyed for many years. That meant that Federer had to cover a lot more ground, often as much if not more than Nadal.
Since the larger racquet, Federer takes much more risk from his BH and allows him to dictate more than being dictated.

That figures - it's not just that he can hit winners on his backhand to shorten rallies, it's that he can rely on it to do more of the donkey work in rallies that in the past he mostly trusted his forehand to do.  Not only does that save running, but it also saves mental energy - both because of absence of pressure on the BH, and not having to work out how to play FH instead of BH.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by bogbrush on Fri Jun 15, 2018 2:31 pm

So basically Amrit, you can forget the argument that his stamina has increased. He plays shorter rallies, runs less when he does (because he can let the backhand do the work) and thus makes a lesser demand on his body.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by Emancipator on Fri Jun 15, 2018 7:20 pm

Haven't read through the thread.

My take is that his recent success over 5 sets can be attributed more to a slight change in mentality than physical fitness. 

Obviously not fitter at 35 than 25 but I suspect more prepared, more expectant and more willing for a dogfight. In his pomp Federer rarely lost five setters due to fatigue. You'd struggle to find more than a handful of matches where he truly looked gassed. I think he felt superior and expected to win quite handily and when that didn't happen, he became more frustrated which in turn affected how he played the big points in the closing stages - in other words, he probably felt that the match should never have gotten that far (after all, it's always on his racquet, right  Winking ).

Nowadays his expectations are more tempered and in a way that has allowed the real competitor to show. Another part of his repertoire that is now being utilised out of necessity.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by Tenez on Fri Jun 15, 2018 7:23 pm

Emancipator wrote:Haven't read through the thread.

My take is that his recent success over 5 sets can be attributed more to a slight change in mentality than physical fitness. 

Obviously not fitter at 35 than 25 but I suspect more prepared, more expectant and more willing for a dogfight. In his pomp Federer rarely lost five setters due to fatigue. You'd struggle to find more than a handful of matches where he truly looked gassed. I think he felt superior and expected to win quite handily and when that didn't happen, he became more frustrated which in turn affected how he played the big points in the closing stages - in other words, he probably felt that the match should never have gotten that far (after all, it's always on his racquet, right  Winking ).

Nowadays his expectations are more tempered and in a way that has allowed the real competitor to show. Another part of his repertoire that is now being utilised out of necessity.

You should read the thread. You would get a more compelling answer. Winking

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by Emancipator on Fri Jun 15, 2018 7:33 pm

barrystar wrote:
Tenez wrote:
DEC1M7 wrote:
bogbrush wrote:
DEC1M7 wrote:
bogbrush wrote:It probably has.
Possible, but what are you basing that on?
On the choice he has made to shorten rallies dramatically and limit the time he spends on Court.
Shorten rallies- yes I agree with you and made that point myself. Dramatically? I'm not so sure. He was always an attacking player, I don't think the difference is as stark as you think. Plus his backhand is less prone to UEs now, which would make rallies longer.

Fed was an attacking player but because he had no powerful BH he had to run a lot more to protect it and more so the fact that it was easier to attack that BH which Nadal enjoyed for many years. That meant that Federer had to cover a lot more ground, often as much if not more than Nadal.
Since the larger racquet, Federer takes much more risk from his BH and allows him to dictate more than being dictated.

That figures - it's not just that he can hit winners on his backhand to shorten rallies, it's that he can rely on it to do more of the donkey work in rallies that in the past he mostly trusted his forehand to do.  Not only does that save running, but it also saves mental energy - both because of absence of pressure on the BH, and not having to work out how to play FH instead of BH.

This is a good observation in general terms about Federer's game. His court positioning is more balanced and more central than it used to be. In the past he spent a lot of time camped in the Ad court protecting his BH which left him a lot of court to cover on his forehand side.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Sat Jun 16, 2018 12:44 am

Many reasonable points here Thumbs Up  

Agree with the observation Federer hits his backhand more flat, more often now and does not move around it to hit his forehand- this saves energy.

To digress, that's something that Nadal has also been doing, started in summer 2015 (results not so good then) but is now using it quite effectively. Really noticeable in the French Open final vs Thiem where he stepped in and took the backhand early. Thiem was caught by surprise, and being quite a one dimensional player, didn't have the variety to change up the patterns.


Last edited by DEC1M7 on Sat Jun 16, 2018 12:49 am; edited 1 time in total

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Sat Jun 16, 2018 12:48 am

Emancipator wrote:In his pomp Federer rarely lost five setters due to fatigue. You'd struggle to find more than a handful of matches where he truly looked gassed.

This does not fit the narrative Tenez has given over the past decade at all.
For example many times Tenez has said that in the French Open final in 2011 Federer was fresh and went 5-2 up, but unfortunately was hit with exhaustion after going 5-2 up and then because of that Nadal could turn the match around and win in 4.
So a lot does depend on your perspective of how Federer was when he was younger. If you believe, as Tenez does, that Federer was "fragile" to the point where he would completely rely on anaerobic respiration from after 20 minutes into a match, then his turn around from then to now is quite remarkable in terms of stamina.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by Tenez on Sat Jun 16, 2018 8:31 am

DEC1M7 wrote:
Emancipator wrote:In his pomp Federer rarely lost five setters due to fatigue. You'd struggle to find more than a handful of matches where he truly looked gassed.

This does not fit the narrative Tenez has given over the past decade at all.
For example many times Tenez has said that in the French Open final in 2011 Federer was fresh and went 5-2 up, but unfortunately was hit with exhaustion after going 5-2 up and then because of that Nadal could turn the match around and win in 4.
So a lot does depend on your perspective of how Federer was when he was younger. If you believe, as Tenez does, that Federer was "fragile" to the point where he would completely rely on anaerobic respiration from after 20 minutes into a match, then his turn around from then to now is quite remarkable in terms of stamina.
Cause Emancipator first reply was nonsense.

I explained enough times here and previous forums that one cannot mix up teh fatigue of running (legs) with those of the arms. If you run a 100m at full speed, you will be completely nackered but you can still run for 100m if you take a 2mn rest in between. But while you will be breathing heavily between those 2mn, you will have difficulty drawing a piece of art! In other words your arm will lose precision. And when you need to time a zippy, high bouncing ball on uneven clay with a 90inch racquet that precision and confidence deteriorates quickly!

But you keep ignoring this simple fact cause it doesn't suit you. The proof is in the (larger) raquet, the sweet spot being bigger, Federer can hit the ball more freely without (as much) fear of shanking it. The larger frame cancels the need for that added precision.

Your man based his game on destroying that precision attacking players require. And for that he needs 2 things: Very powerful shots(long or shot doesn't quite matter) and angles to make sure to force that running which will affect that precision in turn.

This is why Federer often started strong (Rome 06, FO06, FO07, FO11....etc...) but then was always clawed back. Whereas now he starts strong and finishes stronger!

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Sat Jun 16, 2018 6:41 pm

Tenez wrote:
Cause Emancipator first reply was nonsense.
No, it was common sense actually.

Tenez wrote:
This is why Federer often started strong (Rome 06, FO06, FO07, FO11....etc...) but then was always clawed back. Whereas now he starts strong and finishes stronger!
In the French Open 2011, Federer won the fourth set. In Rome 2006 the first 2 sets were split in a TB, Federer won the fourth set, and the fifth went to a TB. So you want us to believe Federer was exhausted within the first set in these matches?
As for the French Open 2007, please let me know how that was a case of 'Federer starting strong' but being 'clawed back'. Nadal broke first, and won the first set 6-3. You're in your own dreamland as usual.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by luvsports! on Sat Jun 16, 2018 6:45 pm

Fed won the third set of the FO and in the 4th set he did look tired but hey ho.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by DEC1M7 on Sat Jun 16, 2018 6:52 pm

luvsports! wrote:Fed won the third set of the FO and in the 4th set he did look tired but hey ho.
Yeah I meant third set. Agree, but getting tired in the fourth set is a far different proposition from what Tenez is saying which is he got tired after going 5-2 up in the first set.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by luvsports! on Sat Jun 16, 2018 7:45 pm

Ah yes. Something along the lines of 'blunting his edge'.

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

Post by Tenez on Sat Jun 16, 2018 9:13 pm

DEC1M7 wrote:
luvsports! wrote:Fed won the third set of the FO and in the 4th set he did look tired but hey ho.
Yeah I meant third set. Agree, but getting tired in the fourth set is a far different proposition from what Tenez is saying which is he got tired after going 5-2 up in the first set.

it just takes a couple of long rallies to blunt the edge and we saw with Djokovic killing Nadal on key points, especially at the beginnig of TBs cause a TB is like 2 games without rest!

Funny how you cannot see how Djoko killed your man....so many times! Very often over 2 or 3 sets....not 5!

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Re: Record in 5 set matches: Nadal drops after age 29, Federer on the up after age 34

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