I’m a fan, really. He plays very relaxedly, just like me when I was young. - Roger Federer
That comment from Roger Federer comes unexpected, especially for those of us who noticed the facial expression at the time of their handshake at the end of their Miami Open Semi-final match last year. A strong sense of similarity between the two seems to be starting to bring this two unlikely pair today. It is true indeed, birds of the same feather do flock together.
What similarities do they have then? Well for one, both of them were not very different, if we compare Federer at Kyrgios' age, to Kyrgios. It seems like they were not too different after all
As can be seen in the video above, the Federer that we know today, the epitome of grace and under-pressure-calm, was not so before 2004. The swears, the curses, the more-than-marginal mishits, the excessively displayed frustration - heck even the outfit - are all too reminiscent of the Bad Boy of tennis.
We should also not forget this, that Kyrgios frequently dons a headband in his matches
Apart from the psychological, and sometimes sartorial similarities, they share the same game-play tendencies, and perhaps also strategic approach, to the game. Both of them are dependent on making the points as short as possible, by attacking their opponent as soon as they are given the chance. The only difference in such is the deadliness of their respective sides when attacking. For Federer, although his backhand's attacking ability has improved drastically over the period of his half-year break from Wimbledon 2016 to Brisbane 2017, his forehand remains and will most probably continue to be his predominant offensive weapon. To be fair, this imbalance in attacking ability has long been neutralized and made irrelevant by the fact that his forehand is perhaps the greatest of all time. For Kyrgios, deadliness is spread out evenly across sides. The natural flatness of his ball, coupled by his incredible ability to handle balls on this side on the rise, serves itself as a tool of surprise and massive discomfort for opponents wired into intuiting that the backhand is always the weaker side of anyone. His forehand, while not as precise as Federer, could perhaps be said to come close to the standard of the maestro's given how vicious his spin is, and the nice balance between forward penetration and spin.
Also, it seems like these two are the best tweeners of this tennis era
The only difference lies in the fact that Kyrgios does it whenever he feels like it, whereas Federer only does it when strictly necessary.
Can you think of anything more that could be contributing to this bond between the GOAT and the PGOAT (P standing for possible)? Feel free to hit us up on Facebook!
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