Monday, June 8, 2009

Roger Federer Beats Robin Soderling 6-1, 7-6, 6-4 to Finally Win the French Open and Tie Pete Sampras' 14 Grand Slam Title Victories

8 June 2009  

The greatest tennis player never to have won the French Open, Roger Federer, finally accomplished the feat an hour ago, beating Robin Soderling of Sweden in straight sets, 6-1, 7-6, 6-4 at Roland Garros, and removing the last remaining doubt in the minds of some that he is history's greatest tennis player.

This is NBC Sport's video clip of Federer sharing with American tennis great John McEnroe his thoughts on his historic win at Roland Garros and on how it feels to be called "the greatest tennis player of all time":

If the past three finals encounters at Roland Garros were to serve as yardstick, Federer does have some reason to thank Soderling for this victory — Nadal beat Federer here in 2006, 2007, and 2008, the last time in embarrassing fashion, 6-1, 6-3, 6-0 — as it was the Swedish-born Soderling who dispatched Nadal 6-2, 7-6,  6-4, 7-6 a week ago.  

Federer played excellent tennis throughout the match exceeding the best that Soderling could throw against him. Soderling's erstwhile aggressive play, which allowed him to dispose of both Nadal and Gonzales, faded into the background as Federer shattered his momentum with an excellent service game, accurate returns and simply brilliant all around play.

Now that Federer appears to have found his career's second wind and Nadal conquered in clay in a way that he obviously did not expect, the exciting world of men's tennis revs itself up, I'd say, two notches higher.  

Wimbledon will be Nadal's chance at redemption; for Federer, a chance to win a 15th Grand Slam title, surpass Pete Sampras and further cement his claim to being the greatest tennis player in history.      

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