Federer is Overrated (in a way)

The subject of this blog article is no doubt a controversial one, as by implication of such opinion being cast in such way, the mystic and/or magnificence of Federer gets questioned, and possibly even diminished to a degree. We however do not profess to have such intentions, nor do we think that our raising of this issue will in any result in those undesirable effects. We believe the raising of this thinking of ours necessary however, despite the flak we could potentially receive, because we would like to see a greater level of objectivity in any sports discussion if possible!

So, in what way is Federer overrated?

We have heard this line over and over again, that Federer hits the ball so smoothly in a way no other tennis player is able, or will ever be able, to. It is just one of those legendary factors that is conventionally deemed to make the legendary figure. This is a flawed assumption to make though, despite it being strongly apparent that such is the case. Federer's stroke sure looks the smoothest, but it cannot be said that Federer's stroke is the smoothest. There is a very slight difference in language here, but the difference between these two statements is very vast. To better understand our point, one should observe carefully the video right below before reading on, and then refer back to it as one reads the remainder of this article.

In the video above, we can see that the two players are on the opposite ends of the smoothness-of-the-strokes spectrum. The unreal seamless strokes of Federer's is in stark contrast the artificial-like rigid disjointedness of the 'strokes' of his unknown hitting partner. However, this contrast does not go beyond the realm of appearances. If one were to observe carefully, the shots (or perhaps more specifically the balls) being produced from the racket of both players looks equally smooth.

What does this provoke, or bring to mind?

It raises the possibility that style does not really equate to substance, which is a huge difference from the conventional belief that style in someway equates to substance. Think Federer. We all believe that although it is not beauty which leads to Federer's greatness, it is his greatness that leads beauty. Now let's try to think of player examples which militate against this idea. We believe that Andy Murray has very mediocre-looking strokes (this is not to mention the looks of his game style), yet he has reached world number one and won three grand slams. Now think of Dustin Brown. In our opinion, he has the flashiest and most dangerous-looking game on tour, yet that has not help him go beyond the third round of any grand slam tournament he took part in.

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