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The Spanish Inquisition

The Spaniard prevails. Mind over matter. The strength of the heart wins.  All these and many more are terms that i heard on Sunday morning, Feb.1, at 9 am. Why had I woken up at such a time? Well that’s a trick question; I hadn’t woken up because i hadn’t slept all night. The reason for this was that i was watching the almost 4+ hour epic match of the Australian Open 2009 final between the world’s two greatest players: Rafael Nadal (1) and Roger Federer (2). And who prevailed in this counter? The surprising winner was the underdog Nadal. Despite all the odds stacked against him, he managed to win over Federer.

But the topic here is not to recount Nadal’s victory. But it is to state its significance. In many ways this victory will have long lasting results in the tennis world. For one of the major ones being, that Nadal has cemented his position as World No. 1 ranked player. Many doubted his achieving the position and prophecized the resurgence of Federer in the near future. But how wrong were they, as Nadal beat the odds and won his first hard-court Major title, becoming the 4th player EVER to win a Major on the three different surfaces. Even the great Federer hasn’t done this.

Another thing I believe this has accomplished is that Nadal may have permanently broken the standards of tennis and therefore the mental strenth of Roger. My observation shows that many tennis analyst comment that in the end, despite all the odds n’ ends, FINESSE will always win over CHARISMA. But was that the case in Nadal’s victory? It is Federer’s play that puts you in a trance and follow his every move. But that day Nadal’s constant strength and non-stop effort allowed him to win the title. And this will lead to Federer changing his style eventually, for now Nadal has shown that he can beat him in his court (clay), in Federer’s court (grass) and on a neutrel court (hard ).

And to that i say: Let the torch pass. Federer is great, yes, and is a shoo-in for the hall-of-fame, but now he is 27 and will now slowly step out of his prime game, though not fading necessarily. The future is Nadal. He is the world number 1 ranked player, with 7 Grand Slam titles and he’s already…..22! He has 6 to 8 more years of prime tennis left in him and he can surely win a lot more, because remember, Federer won his first Grand Slam (Wimbeldon) when he was 23, which is 4 year more than Rafael.

Therefore let’s all honour Rafael Nadal, the official champion of the 2009 Australian Open and pray for more epic matches between the two great rivals, continuing on the path of 7–5, 3–6, 7–6(3), 3–6, 6–2 stylistics and showing us many encounters in this great rivalry.

  1. theafterlifeproject
    February 5, 2009 at 3:25 PM

    It should go down as one of the best matches of all time, although Federer stealing the moment from Nadal at the end. To think Rafa is only 22 and do dominant already shows a good future for tennis.

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