It was Roger Federer’s unlikeliest victory in the grand slam yesterday that brought back so much nostalgia for most of us. A revival performance of a classic was really the reassurance we need in times as these. I was personally very elated as my Tennis memories go right back to childhood. Federer continues to inspire so many people like me.

As a child, I used to watch a lot of TV. I literally watched everything. My whole family was into sports, watching that is. My dad used to watch Tennis and at that point, we weren’t really allowed to stay up at night because there was school and the exams were always on. Wimbledon always happened till 4 in the morning and similar odd hours. My tv was positioned in such a way that I would sneak up from my bed and try to watch something. So, finally I got permission to watch these matches and I’d stay up and watch all of them with my dad.

At that point, it was Andre Agassi giving way to Federer. When his game started, we’d be amazed by his finesse and his amazing way of play which was more strategic and less power. The rivalries at that time were different than now but what’s remained is that it’s been a gentleman’s game then and it’s a gentleman’s game now. These rivalries have inspired such good outcomes. It’s not like an India-Pakistan rivalry. With Federer-Nadal, it’s like no Federer fan can hate Nadal. It’s mutual respect and when that respect becomes a part of your viewers perspective as well, it’s crazy. You don’t usually find this in a lot of sports like Cricket or even Football for example.

So, coming back to my story, this late night Tennis craze lasted for many years. I remember coming home for break during college and I would make my engineering graphic sheets while watching these matches. My dad and I would be shouting at the top of our voices with our grandparents sleeping in the other room. My mum would literally have to run out and make us stop. My sister always supported Nadal. Yesterday, while watching the match, I made it a point to text on our “family” WhatsApp group to rub it on her face that Federer was winning.

She very conveniently said that she actually always wanted to support Federer but apparently, I forcibly made her support Nadal just so that I would have some sort of competition. Now, that is a fight, I have to settle.

I always support Federer because for me he is the best, he was the best forever. Right now he might be no 17 but he’s inspired so many people in so many different ways. He’s calm and composed with beautiful shots. Have you seen him glide on the court? It’s crazy to watch just him play. It’s not sheer sports, it’s using some brains as well. It’s the usage of some good strategy.

Hee’s won after so long and the only reason he wanted to play was that he wanted to win the grand slam. Yesterday before beginning his game, he said, “maybe I’ll see you next time or maybe not.” He is number 17, he is not playing for winning the number 1 title now, he is playing for that one title, his 18th Grand Slam.

Yesterday was epic, everybody could feel his happiness. Everybody in the crowd was like “finally!”

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This article is written by Kanika Nagia 

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Decathlon Sports India