- Abhay Nagarajan
"We are not makers of history. We are made by history." - Martin Luther King
History has borne witness to many tragedies, victories, great empires, wars, misery, and beauty of untold proportions.
In my eyes THE 2008 WIMBLEDON FINAL was one of the most memorable events in Sporting History. It would be a dream for me to witness the same. What more can a tennis player and sports enthusiast ask for? 2008 also happens to be my birth year.
Why am I choosing this? It is because it was a match between two GREAT TITANS with contrasting styles and strengths making the final even more special.
One of them known for his elegant and ease of play and the other known for his gladiator style play who plays every ball like it is his last. They go by the name of ROGER FEDERER and RAFAEL NADAL.
What makes it even more special is that these two have played each other for the previous 2 years in the same stage where FEDERER came on top in both encounters. Nadal came mentally prepared, and this finds special mention in his book ~ Rafa by John Carlin.
Nadal starting with an electric start going two sets up while Federer still searching for his rhythm. But we cannot count Federer out, can we? He comes back snatching the third set away from Nadal but boy, oh boy! little do we know there was more drama to come.
Nadal earns his Championship point with the passing shot of Dreams (hits a forehand down the line), The crowd went crazy, his parents could not believe it. Nadal serves out the Championship point, everyone at their edge of their seats. Nadal hits a short ball to Federer's backhand (according to his plan). Federer under so much pressure hits one of his best passing shots in his life to save the Championship point, denying Nadal his maiden Wimbledon title. Crowd goes crazy. Nadal cannot believe it and Federer gives himself a chance but must fight for 3 more championship points to end up taking the fourth set and make it level. The king of WIMBLEDON IS BACK.
Nadal was not going to let this slip away from him. They start the Fifth and the final set where Nadal strikes first breaking Federer's serve and Federer was in danger.
After a few moments Nadal finds himself with another Championship point but again saved by Federer (makes it deuce). Nadal serves well and gets another championship point. Nadal serves the Championship Point, Federer returns, Nadal puts the ball back and Federer goes for his hard hit but misses it in the net and Nadal finally ends Federer’s 4.5 years throne at Number.1 and his Wimbledon run for 5 straight years.
Nadal creates history and continues to create magic alongside his biggest rival Roger Federer. Now, they both have 20 Grand slams each.
Not without reason they say:
“Battle of Waterloo was won on the play fields of Eton.”