No Hard Feelings? Darn! I Mean . . . Isn't that Nice
After showing off his tennis skills again yesterday, Roger Federer showed off his political skills in the press room. In about 10 words, he took the air out of the brewing Federer-Nadal feud. It was a classy performance. Federer essentially said he’ll never do tour business in public, and that a strike is a dangerous last step. He also said that he was happy and proud that his Little Buddy Rafa was all grown up now, with his own opinions, and that they’ve both been frustrated by recent negotiations.
As for Rafa, Little Buddy took a step back and said he wouldn’t be going public with anything anytime soon, no matter how hard the press tried.
—In related news, Neil Harman reported in the London Times that at the World Tour Finals last November, all of the players present (the Top 9), except Federer, were in favor of a two-year ranking system. This may be where Rafa got the idea of the “supermajority” that would vote for his plan, but yesterday Federer again stressed that he was concerned with both high- and lower-ranked players.
What struck me watching both pressers was how mature each of them were about it. Nadal laughed at himself for “talking too much, as usual,” and Federer said that just because they have disagreements doesn’t mean their friendship will be affected.
Bad for the press, yes, but these were nice moments for anyone who likes these two guys.