So right Teejay 1 and Dex. There is too much being read into this loss against Raonic. Andy looked tired and so did not put too much into the match. He will not have liked losing but will not think it is the end of the world.
Thanks. I've just said on another thread, this loss is exactly the same as the loss to Chardy after the Olympics. Andy was tired, he had given all he had to give on that particular day. It can happen after a big win such as a major. Even Smugfed had a bad patch after his first major win. It happens. There is some history of it happening.
I have to be really honest now. I would love Andy to win Shanghai this week and I do think he has a great chance, but I am going to see what happens. If he wins that's great, if he doesn't that is all right as well. I know he would lose points if he didn't, so I don't need reminding of that fact, but I think some patience on our part is required. Andy has had a brilliant summer, a career year. Within weeks he notched up the two biggest wins of his career to date. As far as I'm concerned, anything he does now, at least for the rest of this year, will be a bonus, as much as I'd love him to win the WTF.
It seems clear to me that Andy is focusing now on doing well in Shanghai and Paris, before going on to try to do much better than last year at the WTF, when he had to pull out with injury after playing Ferrer.
Let's get one thing straight. The loss in Japan was a disappointment. It was not the end of the world, or the end of Andy's career. It will only be those things if Andy allows that to happen, and he won't. Andy has never been a quitter.
Frankly, I think some would have coped better if he'd lost to Nishikori in the final in Japan, because it would have been the one time Nishikori had beaten him, and so some would have said that Andy was tired, it didn't mean anything long term. However, unfortunately, he lost to Raonic, who is being hyped beyond all reason as the next big thing, long before he has actually done anything worth hyping him for. Worse, Raonic beat Andy in Barcelona earlier in the year, so an understandable loss, complete with understandable frustration from Andy, is being turned into a full-scale panic. How quickly we have forgotten the USO, when Andy had to fight through three tie-breaks to win his third round match, had to fight from a set and 5-1 down in his quarter final, and had to overcome losing a 2 set lead in the final to take the title. That latter one was against a player who is a damned sight better than Raonic will ever be.
With respect, I think some thought that after Andy won the USO he would go on to win everything in sight immediately. If only life was that simple. The key for Andy, it seems to me, is to regroup, get himself together, and not put himself under too much pressure immediately. I firmly believe the wins will come, and I also believe Andy will finish the year well. In the meantime he doesn't deserve to be pilloried for one lapse, and he doesn't deserve to have one blip turned in to the drama of the century.
This loss to Raonic will turn out to be as relevant as the losses to Mahut at Queen's and Chardy at Cincy, and should be thought of in those terms.