Jacob Steinberg on the latest Wimbledon final in which Novak Djokovic outlasted Roger Federer:
Yet, if anything, this defeat should reinforce his belief that he can rule SW19 again and why bow out now when he clearly has so much left to give? His capacity to delight and enthrall us with the variety and majesty of his play remains intact and, lest we forget it, so does his ability to be a stubborn sod when we least expect it.
Absolutely true. And yet:
Yet it was also predictable that Djokovic, who served unusually well, had joy targeting Federer’s backhand or that he outlasted him when it turned into a battle of stamina. Federer ran 4,096 metres to Djokovic’s 3,773 and his first serve failed him near the end, his 32-year-old legs growing weary under the strain. Time catches up with everyone, even genius.
Such a great match. As Federer himself quipped at the end, “See you next year.”