Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz caused an earthquake sized seismic shock on Wednesday afternoon. He beat Roger Federer in straight sets in a Wimbledon quarterfinal, hitting him for love in the final set. The 8 time champ will no doubt start questioning his ability as a top player in the game after this one. Let’s analyze what went wrong for the number 6 seed. First serve was good , SECOND SERVE NOT SO GREAT. He won just 37% of his overall points on second serve. Hubert’s passing shots were awesome, Roger looking tentative in his shot making. Check out 3-2 first set first point. In order to come to the net you have to follow up a great shot. If you make a lousy one don’t even try. The unforced error count from Roger was unusually high. There is no substitute to hitting the racquet often, Federer has not been hitting balls often lately in competitive matches and it showed.
Disappointingly, Roger blew a 2-0 lead in the second set. I want us to check out 2-0(40-40). I have seen Roger play that open-the-racquet-face forehand to the corner for a long time and it has worked especially on grass. This time Hubert scouted it. Why not go for the backhand down the line. The body language is showing where he will place the shot. It was not all bad for Roger, he did have his moments notably holding serve in that third game after the long deuce situation. He doesn’t give his backhand the respect that it deserves, it is that good. Hurkacz turned the tables in that set when he started making Roger run more for the drop shots and the corner shots. In the second set tie break, Hubert came out tops with some great court coverage. Roger poor at the net. Check out 3-2. Could we say there was a slip? Or the sun was in his eye? I don’t have an explanation for you. Sometimes father time creeps up on you in the middle of a point.
The fired up Pole dismantled Roger in the third. More unassured hitting from Roger. Check out 1-0(30-15). That forehand again telegraphed by Hubert but the Pole was struggling in this point. Federer his own worst enemy by failing to put away the drop shot. Is it the last time we see the Great One in the Grass of Wimbledon? Novak’s path now clear to equal his tally of majors. Funny how life comes full circle, in 2001 Roger was the one effectively ending the great Pete Sampras career on the same court in the quarterfinals with a masterful display of tennis.