Federer Calls For Faster Courts and Less Defensive Play
“It’s an easy fix. Just make quicker courts, then it’s hard to defend,” Federer said. “Attacking style is more important. It’s only on this type of slow courts that you can defend the way we are all doing right now.”
Wow, when Federer says that the courts are slow even on an indoor hard surface that is a heavy lambasting of the state of the playing field in today’s game. Djokovic even described his play as “passive” in thwarting Fed at the year-ending event.
“He’s somebody that is very aggressive, that likes to finish points very quickly,” Djokovic said. “But I managed to get a lot of shots back into the court, being passive, a couple meters behind the baseline. … That was one of the goals tonight, to always try to get him into the longer rallies where I think I had the better chance.”
I agree wholeheartedly with Fed here. I’d like to see more attacking play. When a Top 4 guy like Murray wins the U.S. Open by basically retreating on every ball hit around the service line, than something smells fishy in Flushing Meadow. I love tennis, but I took particular glee in Paris when serve and volleyer Llodra made it to the semis.
Maybe the state of the courts had gotten too fast in the Sampras, Ivanisivic and Kraijicek days, but now it has clearly gone in the other direction. I say enough of these five-hour matches. Let’s reward the versatile player who can also play the net.
“What you don’t want is that you hit 15 great shots and at the end, it ends up in an error,” he said. “So I think sometimes quicker courts do help the cause. I think it would help from time to time to move to something a bit faster. That would help to learn, as well, for many different players, different playing styles, to realize that coming to the net is a good thing, it’s not a bad thing.”
Let’s say hello to quick agile forays to net and some touch, where a player is required to develop a short game. Otherwise, we have Junior Development coaches like Pat McEnroe saying that you can’t make it in today’s game unless you can rally 35 balls back and forth from the baseline.
Is that really the best style of game we tennis fans want to watch? Is it the most entertaining? Let’s reward the Federer’s, Llodra’s and Fish’s and make the game more athletic and artistic again by adding some faster surfaces on the tour, particularly at the outdoor hard court slams and at Wimbledon.