Saudi women's national team draws 3-3 against Bhutan, first international tournament at home

Main menu


Saudi women's national team draws 3-3 against Bhutan, first international tournament at home

featured image

LONDON: There’s one way to look at what Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and the now retired Roger Federer have achieved… reach the standards they set.

Certainly not soon.

Here’s another way to think about things when the sport’s pro level kicked off Saturday following the final match of Federer’s career. What he and the other two members of his illustrious trio, and Serena Williams, have managed to demonstrate is that it’s possible to rule not just for years at a time, but for decades. was.

The 41-year-old Federer believes up-and-coming players can learn from how he and his contemporaries work. From their confidence and attitude towards goal setting, to their training and nutrition. Other ways to ensure longevity.

He laughed when he relayed a conversation with Björn Borg, captain of Team Europe at the Laver Cup, about his life after winning 11 majors from 1974 to 1981 and retiring in his 20s. rice field. In an interview with the Associated Press earlier this week, Federer recalled a conversation Borg had about getting a massage once a week and perhaps the occasional hot bath while on tour.

Federer’s massage routine over his quarter-century as an athlete?

“Maybe every day. Sometimes I was sick of them, so I said, ‘Can we skip a day today?’ I never miss them. I mean, I used to love massages sometimes, but come on. The number 1,423 looks like “yes”. I’d rather do something different,” Federer said, adding with a self-conscious smile.

When Pete Sampras won the 2002 US Open in his last match, he won his 14th Slam Trophy. This was his twice more number than any other man in tennis history up to that point. Indeed, at the time, some wondered whether that mark could be broken.

It seems quirky now. Twenty years later, Federer finished with 20. Djokovic he is 21. Nadal leads with 22. The latter two of him are still growing in number. Nadal, 36, won the Australian Open in January and his French Open in June. Djokovic, 35, won Wimbledon in July.

“No. 1, it’s easier to run on different surfaces these days. Pete only built one semi at French. Borg has never been to Australia…. And Federer said “It wasn’t very professional in the ’70s.”

Federer also made this point: he, Nadal, Djokovic, Williams and the rise of social media have contributed to a paradigm shift in the importance of Grand Slams compared to other tournaments, chasing those records and making them We talked about chasing a record for — more widely accepted and deserved.

“It’s a different world now,” Federer said.

A long time ago he said: I say this whole record started with Sampras wanting to beat (Roy) Emerson’s age of 12. This is what made this generation that we see in Novak and Rafa today. I don’t remember much about all these records when I met them in the 90’s. I remember Pete chasing them, but I didn’t notice it. They just said, “Oh, you play like Pete, so you’re going to be the next Pete Sampras.” I was like ‘oh ok’. ”

After saying that, he rolled his eyes.

Then Federer kept talking about Sampras. I don’t even remember where he passed that record. I think it was certainly a big moment, but being a gaming historian I don’t remember much of it. ”

The player has changed. Media coverage has changed. The focus of fans has changed.

“We behave differently and are driven in different ways in the process. I don’t think you were thinking years ahead. Do I have to? It used to be, ‘OK, what are you doing next week?'” Federer said. “I think it’s different. That’s why I think we’ll see more successful players in the future. They’re going to stay fit, so they’ll be able to play longer.”

Examples of current emerging talent, including US Open winner and world No. 1 ranked Carlos Alcaraz, 19, and French Open and US Open runner-up Casper Ruud, 23, No. 2 in the world, are: are as follows: there.

Here’s the problem: can they follow it?

“They took it to a whole different level and showed that anything is possible. If one of the three wasn’t there, imagine how much the other two have. I will be nearing 30….it will inspire young players like me and younger generations to see how well they can play. But let’s see in the future. Anything can happen.”

Félix Auger-Aliassime, who reached the US Open semifinals at age 21 last year, agrees that aspirations help.

Team World vice-captain Patrick McEnroe noted that the Big 3 have role models in terms of sportsmanship and “how a real game goes on the court.”

“Now the young players are training hard, always trying to improve and becoming more and more professional,” said Auger-Aliassime. “I think it raises the level and competitiveness of the sport and moves the sport forward.”