Roger Federer: Great Expectations
We are now into the semi finals stage of Roland Garros 2009. As has become customary in the past five years, one of the names in the final four is that of Roger Federer. That's 20 straight Grand Slam semis for the Swiss Master, incredible.
The fact that Roger has made it to yet another semifinals is nothing new, even the fat that he might compete in another Grand Slam finals is not exactly breaking news anymore.
Still the entire tennis world right from the players to the crazed fans to even casual observers are waiting with bated breath to see what happens and to see how Federer's story unfolds.
Roger Federer is two wins away from a history making and record equalling win that will undoubtedly cement his names as one of the greatest player to have played the game.
If he wins his next two matches, Roger will become one of the elite few to have completed a career Grand Slam. In addition to that, he will also equal Pete Sampras' record haul of 14 Grand Slam titles.
Roger has reached the finals of Roland Garros and come withing a victory of claiming the elusive French Open for the past three years, each time losing the finals to Rafael Nadal.
But with his chief tormentor out in Round 16 and the likes of Murray and Djokovic also not making it to the last four Roger Federer must feel that his dream of winning the French Open is now closer than ever.
He is constantly reminded by the enormity of what he could achieve by the hordes of fans and well wishers who run up to him at every opportunity and tell him this is his year to do it!
Always a popular player and a crowd favourite, Federer mania seems to have scaled unthinkable heights in the past week. Its almost like the world is watching him and willing him to win. Right from fervent fans to the usually fickle crowd, all seem to be rooting for Roger.
Former player Tim Henman says he hopes Federer lifts the trophy this Sunday and in doing so it will make him one of the greatest players in history.
Even his arch rival Nadal has said it would b nice if Roger wins the title and 'if anyone deserves to win it, its him.'
Federer fan or not, few people would dispute that sentiment. Roger Federer has had to deal with some particularly tough losses in the past 18 months.
The entire world watched in shock as Federer finally relinquished his hold on the Wimbledon title to Nadal in an epic final last year. The wound inflicted by Rafa would have only deepened when a few months later he took over from Roger as the World No. 1 after a record 237 consecutive weeks at the top.
And no one will forget Roger's forlorn face and his tears of anguish when he was denied a victory at the Australian Open, and a chance to equal Sampras' record there.
With only two matches standing between Roger Federer and the history books, the great champion admitted to feeling the nerves and the enormous expectation on him to win the title. And while Roger Federer is no stranger to winning Grand Slams, if he does go on to win the title this Sunday, it will be one of his greatest and sweetest triumphs!
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