David Ferrer. A name and player tennis followers are all too familiar with, but one whose prowess goes rather unnoticed given his being in the shadow of the greater ones of this greatest tennis age yet. This article seeks to shed some light where darkness is great to an unjustifiable extent. He after all holds the unknown record of winning the most matches on the ATP tour without winning a grand slam.
So what makes Ferrer great?
David Ferrer has excellent movement on the court. His speed around it reminds us of Juan Carlos Ferrero - 2003 Rolland Garros champion. His proven and consistent ability to throw punishing shots after travelling a long long distance, extending rallies when they are supposed to end to the delight of the aspirant enforcer. In fact, David Ferrer reminds us of Juan Carlos Ferrero - 2003 French Open Champion - who was affectionately nicknamed 'the Mosquito' given his quick court speed and light-weighted maneuvers. Analyzing the styles of play of both Ferrero and Ferrer, we see no disparity in any quality between the two, except perhaps that in height. We thus believe Ferrer is a victim of time, born in an age when the greatest tennis players have a super-human quality offensive capability when compared to the greatest tennis players of only a decade ago.
David Ferrer not-too-famously has a workout routine which has its first component a 10 km jogging warm-up on the treadmill. It is fitting that he has also a 'slow' gameplay built upon the 'slow' quality of consistency. If you notice his matches, David Ferrer rarely makes unforced errors. It is a given though that the points he tend to lose are advantages taken of his un-painful consistency game. Why is this remarkable consistency significant for the purpose of this article? Let's use the concept of company earnings as an analogy. A company seeks to maximize its profits through two ways - one would be to increase revenue, the other would be the reduce your bottom line. David Ferrer adopts the later approach.
Yes, this is such an anti-climax, but with the overshadowing of this great player by the very best players in history, this section demands to exist here. Ferrer has won tournaments at all levels (ATP 250, ATP 500, Masters 1000) except at a Grand Slam, and currently has the eighth highest career prize money earnings of all time! As just mentioned, Ferrer's profile would have been pretty much identical to that of some of the greatest players in tennis history, if one does not factor in his lack of grand slam wins.
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