US Open: Can five-time champion Roger Federer reach a final after five years?

Updated: Aug 22, 2014, 16:00 PM IST

Suyash Srivastava

At Wimbledon 2014, many believed Swiss legend Roger Federer had the best chance to end his Grand Slam drought. The way he was moving on the court, would have put many youngsters on the tour to shame. Federer played his best tennis till the final, where Serbian Novak Djokovic ended his resilience in what was a scintillating contest.

This year`s Wimbledon was another fine example of the amount of hard work the Swiss legend has been putting into his game. With age, his reflexes have slowed down, as a result of which Federer isn`t impeccable with his strokes anymore. It is amazing, how even at 33, Federer looks this fit on a tennis court.

In a year, where he has improved his game and has given a glimmer of hope to his fans, Federer is one of the favourites for the US Open. And Rafael Nadal pulling out at the last moment has only enhanced his chances of doing well in the last Grand Slam of the year.

Federer is now seeded second after Nadal`s exit and he is likely to face Djokovic in the final if both of them remain unbeaten till then.

Federer has been lucky with his draw as well. Djokovic will be challenged by the likes of Stanislas Wawrinka, Andy Murray, Milos Raonic and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. On the other hand, Federer will have two major obstacles in David Ferrer and Grigor Dimitrov.

The problem with Federer`s current game is his reliability on the serve and volley approach. While he looks extremely confident till the quarters and the semis, he is seen struggling when he is up against the likes of Nadal and Novak Djokovic. The two champions are aware of Federer`s current strategy, as a result of which the Swiss has lost several points from the net in the last few years.

It is amazing how once, irrespective of the country, court and the Grand Slam, Federer was the clear favourite to win any tournament. Despite his struggle, experts too believe he has a fair chance at the US Open 2014.

But the way he fought at the Wimbledon final, it was a statement for his opponents that one can`t write off Federer so easily. A title at the Cincinnati Master, after defeating David Ferrer in the final, was a good build up to the US Open for the 17-time Grand Slam champion. A Federer-Ferrer tussle is still a distinct possibility at Flushing Meadows at the semis, but the contest which should be fun to watch is between the maestro and his understudy, baby Federer – Grigor Dimitrov. The Bulgarian is seen as a future star, and is likely to give a tough competition to the Swiss.

Federer, who is known for his past dominance at the Wimbledon, also won five consecutive titles at the US Open from 2004-08. Since then, he has struggled to even reach the final, which has been the case for him in most of the Majors.

Roger Federer fans will once again come to Flushing Meadows, expecting his 18th Grand Slam title. While they would be deprived of a Federer vs Nadal contest, they wouldn`t mind another title for the Swiss in Nadal`s absence.

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