Australian Open: Djokovic wall is again too much for Federer

For more than half an hour, fans of Roger Federer, majority in a night of devastating Australian heat, levitated outside the 35 degrees (s, it was night), the weight of the last matches and the reality of a fraud among cottons. They were levitating, dreaming, smiling: subime revs and mortal right, the Swiss ruled with short points, marched determined towards the conquest of the first set and, probably, the pass to the end of the Australian Open.

Until the Serbian Novak Djokovic, his rival, began to make him notice something: the first set is a moment in which you almost always shine t, but in the end I end up winning. A kind of maximum referred to the German football team, but applied tennis. And Djokovic won that first set, and the next, and the next, to settle in Sunday's final with a 7-6 (7-1), 6-4 and 6-3 and stay one step away from the eighth title, something that nobody ever achieved in the professional era in Melbourne.

“This game could have taken another pathHe started playing very well, I was very nervous at first. And I want to say that we must show a lot of respect for Federer, who played today although he was obviously injured and diminished in his movements, “Djokovic analyzed after the victory.

But before that, before reality brought him down to earth, Federer so. He went ahead 4-1 and, with Djokovic taking 0-40, he surely missed the opportunity of the night, because the Serbian ended up defending his service. From that 4-2, Federer again appealed to the slice, a slowing effect, to impact the revs. “It is inexplicable,” commented Jim Courier, former number one in the world, on Australian television. “Is the movement of hitting the revs fully causing pain? We do not know, for the moment we can only speculate. The slice requires less physical effort. “

Courier talked about the issue when the second set was already in development and after Federer took advantage of the pause between first and second manga to be treated in the dressing room by the doctor, the same thing he did in the quarterfinal clash that miraculously won him to the American Tennys Sandgren.

There was a physical pain in Federer, but it is not enough with that to explain today's game: only he knows how deeply nailed he has in his mind and soul the pain for the Wimbledon final lost in 2019 against Djokovic. Having made any of those two match points, the story today is very different. But I lost, just as I did today, again to the Serbian, that for the Golden Weddings of the clashes between the two He was kind enough, at least, not to stretch the agony at the level of London.

Djokovic is in a final that will allow him to fight for his Grand Slam title number 17 and approaching the 19 of Rafael Nadal and the 20 of Federer. A final with the German Alexander Zeverev or the Australian Dominic Thiem, who play tomorrow Friday, after shaping a joint milestone with the Swiss: today was the 50th match between the two. Djokovoc already leads 27-23. In those Silver Weddings of the Swiss-Serbian duel, one is happy and the other is not. Nothing strange, many parties are like that.

Tennis is sometimes cruel to Federer (Yes, also with him), who lost 7-1 the tie break and the partial despite connecting 26 winning shots against only 10 of Djokovic. Shining, which is what the Swiss does so frequently and intensely, is not a guarantee of victory. Glorious points and inconsequential are worth exactly the same, although the sense of opportunity is also key. If Federer began to take advantage in that first set with a great parallel revs, the same blow served Djokovic to close the opening set in 62 minutes.

A old story, a known script: Federer takes a big advantage in the first set, but ends up giving it 7-5 or in tie break. It is something that happened several times with Djokovic, a karma that came back to take over the duel.

The second set, in which Federer had the possibility of equalizing in five and five knows if to win it, saw how the Swiss began to lose consistency and hope. The Serbian took it 6-4, and although Federer did not stop fighting in the third, hope was no longer on his side and doubt had disappeared from the mind of Djokovic, who achieved his tenth victory in 14 clashes with Federer in the last five years.

And now? If he wins on Sunday, recover number one, but the matter goes further. If he wins on Sunday, Djokovic will be able to tell the world with fundamentals that everything very well with the Nadal-Federer duel, but that it is time to take it into account and admit what he feels and just slips: I am so big like the other two, and if they give me time, even more. It is clear that Paris, London and New York will have much to say this year.

According to the criteria of

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