Roger Federer Beats Andy Murray for Australian Open
One year ago Roger Federer‘s performance in the Australian Open final led to speculation that the great men’s tennis champion was at the precipice of a steep decline. He lost a five setter to his nemesis Rafael Nadal and cried on the court following the defeat. This year, the only speculation coming from Federer’s performance in the Aussie final is whether he can win tennis’s Grand Slam. And it was his opponent who was left in tears.
Roger Federer won his 16th Grand Slam title Sunday in Melbourne, defeating the great Brit hope Andy Murray, 6-3, 6-4, 7-6 (11). It was all Roger for the first two sets, but Murray threatened to make it a match when he took a 5-2 lead in the third. One Federer break equaled the score at 5-5 en route to a victory in a lengthy tiebreaker which included five set points for Murray. After the match Murray said, “I can cry like Roger, it’s just a shame I can’t play like him.”
Federer drew some flak earlier in the weekend when he made comments to the press suggesting that he didn’t have as much riding on the match as Murray, who was seeking his first Grand Slam and the first for a Brit since 74 years. That could have been a genuine statement (getting No. 1 is much more meaningful than No. 16) or it could have been a deliberate attempt to put more pressure on Murray. The 22-year old is well-known for getting too much into the moment during big matches and letting the mounting distractions weigh on his game. At Wimbledon, where Murray is the nation’s favorite son, his results have been considered disappointing, at best.
He’ll have his time, though. Federer said as much in his post-match press conference: “Andy you are too good not to win a Grand Slam, so don’t worry about it.”
Federer’s exactly right, Murray will get his Grand Slam at some point. With the way Federer is playing though, that eventual victory might come later rather than sooner.