Stop the presses! Just when you thought (or at least a few thought) the book on The Mighty Fed had been written and sent off to the printers, a new chapter must be written (not an epilogue, mind you) wherein a new plot-altering character is introduced in glorious form. And that character is none other than The Mighty Fed's awesome alter ego, Crazy Eyez Fed.
Because let's face it. Throughout this tournament, though TMF made a few cameo appearances, it was Crazy Eyez Fed that propelled the Swiss Superstar to his 5th straight US Open title, and first (and only) Slam title of the 2008 season. This was a title that was won more out of pure guts and guile than it was sublime shotmaking and precision. The Beautiful Balanced Baryshnikov has been replaced (for the time being I suppose) with a crasser, uglier Fed, who lunged, scurried, and fought both his opponents, but more himself, to victory. And TMF knew it, which is why he gave his alter ego a kiss after all was said and done:
As for Muzzah, he will regret not bringing another eye-opening performance to the big stage against Fed. He will also lose countless nights of sleep over his failure to challenge that ball that was clearly out on break point in the second set. He will toss and turn much like Nole did after he lost his tight final against TMF last year where he had set points and couldn't covert. Or like Baby Elephant, who couldn't get the sight of her ill-advised drop shot in the first set of the AO final against Masha. Or like Rafa did after he lost the 2007 Wimbledon final. Or like Serena, who rued her choke job against Venus in this year's Wimbly. This loss will eat at him to the point where he may be driven to take his first drink of the Devil's Punch. And he will come out of it all a better player who is destined to win Slams. Because if it doesn't eat at you, you (a) never really wanted it the first place or (b) you never really believed you could win. I don't think Murray falls in either category. That he proved over the course of this fortnight.
But let's get back to the real story. All credit to Crazy Eyez Fed. This one meant the world to him. He was clearly a step slower than in years past and the confidence in
his groundstrokes came and went as each game went by. But his heart
cannot be questioned. He is absolutely the Swiss Lion, as truthfully
advertised. He left no doubt about that:
Doesn't he kind of look like Luke Skywalker in Empire when the Emporer goes all electric on him? Feels so good it hurts, huh?