June 16, 2013 by Parveer Mann
After being overshadowed by the other members of the Big 4 in Paris, Roger Federer and Andy Murray both took their victory laps this week. It was never easy or particularly pretty but by capturing the first tournaments on grass of the year, they did enough to get themselves ready in advance of Wimbledon.
Federer’s first of the year
It took him longer than usual to get to title number 77 but Roger will take it nonetheless. He extends his streak of winning an ATP title to an incredible 13 years and has now won Halle six times. This time was certainly a test as he had to come back from a set down to Tommy Haas in the semifinals and needed three sets to beat Youzhny.
We know the bigger question surrounding Federer will be if he has enough left to string together seven wins in one of the remaining slams. Many doubted him last year at this time and all he did was put together the second best summer on tour (a seventh Wimbledon title and silver at the Olympics). Personally, I’m of the opinion that Fed has enough to win another but he is at that point where he never will be the clear favourite to do so.
In London, Andy Murray was doing some of his own preparation and alleviating worries some may have had about him going into Wimbledon. Murray, who had been relegated to tennis fan and frequent tweeter during the French, returned from injury and won his third Queen’s club title.
Even though missing a slam hurts, it may have been wise to not expose his hurt back to the most physical surface. Instead, he now rightfully focuses on getting himself ready for the tournament that will ultimately define is legacy. His victory over Cilic was beneficial both because he showed that he could extend himself and it’s always nice to beat the defending champ.
With Andy back in the fold, we will finally have the Big 4 in the same grand slam for the first time since last year’s Wimbledon. Even more exciting, you can make a legitimate argument that any of the four can win at SW19 in three weeks.
Highlights of the Tennis Weekend:
While most of us focused on grass, there was still some clay tennis being played. I like to highlight those players who have their breakthrough and this week it was Simona Halep who won her first WTA crown. Good on her but I think we all want to just being seeing some lawn action for the next few weeks!