Maybe Roger Federer, for all his greatness, has only been teasing us and scratching the surface of his brilliance to this point. How else do you explain the incredible between-the-legs shot he pulled off against Novak Djokovic in the semifinals of the U.S. Open?
To his credit, Federer said after the match that while he practices the shot — one you see most pros hit, but never score with — but that it “never works.”
Still, it was amazing, like everything this man does on the tennis court. He’s made 23 straight Grad Slam semifinals — bearly six straight years’ worth — and 14 straight finals. That would be the equivalent of Tiger Woods playing in the final pairing on Sunday in 14 straight majors.
Nobody is doing to his sport — or has done, Tiger and MJ included (maybe Bill Russell) — what Federer is doing to his.
Remarkable, and it was all symbolized by this one shot.