This is my tennis blog, Lefty Advantage. I am a diehard Roger Federer fan and think he is the undisputed greatest player ever. I love tennis more than anything else in the world, and have played for 11 years - the tennis court is like my second home. I make regular tournament updates and comment on mostly everything to do with men's tennis, so check back regularly whenever there is tennis being played!
Sunday, January 15, 2012
Nadal Shows His True Ego
Remember the days when there was the wide-held assumption that Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer had mutual respect for one another? Well, those days are gone, and Nadal seems increasingly hell-bent on changing everything on the ATP World Tour to suit his own needs. Recently, Nadal and Federer have been on opposite sides in the ongoing debate about the season schedule, among many other things.
Unlike in past complaints, Rafa brought Roger into the picture by criticizing his viewpoints. He said that Roger's opinion of the tour's schedule being fine is "wrong" because "more people have the same opinion that the schedule is too demanding. Well, let me ask, how many people really have been complaining about the schedule besides Nadal and Andy Murray? I almost know for a fact that the lower-ranked players are on Roger's side, who understands that money doesn't come as easy for them so they NEED to play more tournaments in order to make their living. Unlike the top 30 players, who can get by from playing the minimum requirements in the schedule, they have to play many small tournaments to help themselves out. For some reason, Nadal does not get this and only thinks of himself and the benefits a different schedule can have on him. Is this the kind of sportsman that the ATP wants to have leading the way? I don't think so, and that's why Roger is viewed with more seniority than Rafa.
I really have a problem with Nadal's attitude. He does not seem to understand that HE can control his own schedule, and that HE is his own worst enemy when it comes to all the injuries he has compiled over the years. Sure, Federer plays a much more easing game on his body, but he has also had injuries too. Roger has just handled his schedule very well throughout his career, knowing when to take breaks, when to heal, and when to skip some tournaments in order to get more rest (prime example is Shanghai last year). To blame Roger for playing an easy game on his body is a very misjudged accusation because he does encounter his own problems. But for Roger, tennis is more than about winning. Even in the darkest moments of his career, he has always held true to his values and never stooped to lower other players or the tour just because things are not going his way. For Nadal, winning IS everything to him, and he loves it more than tennis itself. What happened when he was stymied six times by Djokovic last year, twice in major finals? He insulted the serve and volley style of play made famous by guys like Pete Sampras and Gorn Ivanisevic. He started complaining about the schedule, about the lack of clay court events (a RIDICULOUS complaint), wanting a two-year ranking system, the speed of the balls, and much, much more. I do find it quite hilarious that he thinks the balls are moving faster than ever when the courts have been slowed down year after year after year. It is also very funny that he complains about finishing his career with numerous injuries, yet they are ALL from his own hand due to his careless scheduling habits. What a hypocrite. It is clear to me, and now many others, that Nadal is not the saint he once was made out to be. When the going gets tough, he finds numerous excuses to distract from his own problems. Before Grand Slams, he plays the injury card so that if he loses, he has an excuse as to why he lost? This has been the case for years and is why there has been this misconception that whenever Nadal loses, it is because he is not at his very fittest. Give me a freakin' break.
Rafa, we see your true colours shining through. If you aren't careful, you will ruin your legacy and disgrace the game that gave you and your family EVERYTHING. You have lost all my respect for you with your behaviour over the past year. Compared to you, Roger is an angel and you are the devil. If you truly want to be an ambassador of the game, stop thinking about yourself for a change and think about the others who struggle to break even in their tennis careers. Be blessed that the ATP has given you so much and that you have been privileged that the courts have been universally slowed for your benefit. Through my eyes, you are a despicable human being, and don't deserve anything the rest of your career. Grow up and stop acting like a child.
These are not words that I am writing just because I am sitting behind a computer screen. I want to let it be known that I would say all this right to his face if given the chance. Rafa needs to be put in his place and taught a lesson about how to treat others and how to honour the game that made you. For once, and now more than ever, should Rafa and Roger meet in the semis, I want Roger to DESTROY him. Not hold back. I can only hope that Nadal's words have just fueled Federer's fire and he will given him another severe beatdown.
If you ever right your wrongs, Mr. Nadal, and stop trying to change everything for your own benefit, I may change my mind about you. But as of right now, you cannot hold a candle to Federer as a tennis player or as a human being. Everything will come full circle and we will all see your true colours.
PS - I have had many of those thoughts I just wrote in my head for a very long time. I have disliked Nadal the tennis player for years now, but I always respected the human being off the court because I thought he was a class act. After seeing his whining this past year about every nook and cranny in the ATP, I have lost all that respect, and can now see that he is nothing more than an immature little boy who wants his own way all the time. I hope this article can make people think about the misconceptions we have had about Nadal throughout the years.