BY WASIM PARKAR – FAN FUEL BLOGGER
As the dust settles on an absorbing men’s championship at Wimbledon, it’s time to look forward to the summer season by asking some burning questions as we head into the North American leg of the ATP Tour.
Can Roger and Rafa make a return to former glory?
It seems like it was only a few grand slams ago, that Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal were competing against each other at the final of all grand slams. However, Djokovic and Murray now share the pre-eminent rivalry in men’s tennis. The world number one and two have squared up against each other in three of the last four grand slam finals. Federer and Nadal have been left trailing in their wake.
Federer hasn’t made it to the US Open final since 2009, losing two classic semis to Djokovic in 2010 and 2011. Canada hasn’t been kind to the Swiss Maestro either, with his last title north of the border coming in Toronto in 2006. It’s Cincinnati that is Federer’s domain, with three wins in the last four years, including two final victories over Djokovic. If Federer can win one of the Masters Series events it might yet propel him to have a strong run in New York.
For Nadal, this has traditionally been the weakest part of the season. Even at peak fitness, Nadal hasn’t always had a smooth transition between the grass and hard court seasons, with his last win in either of the Masters coming at Toronto in 2008. Of course that didn’t stop him from winning the US Open in 2010 and finishing runner-up to Djokovic in 2011. Nadal’s fitness is the key issue. If Nadal has no niggles to worry about, then there is still a chance he could be a major contender at the US Open.