Hours later and I still can't believe it actually happened, which is totally unfair to Elfie. Here's a guy who has had a steady and workmanlike ascent through the rankings to reach #5. He has gone from being the unfit teen who was reduced to tears by Andy Murray a couple of years ago and embarrassed by Roger Federer only 9 months ago, to being a guy who has taken the last three matches from Rafa on hard courts, pushed Fed to five sets on clay, beating A-Rod twice in a week, pushing Muzz in a tough three setter in Montreal, and dusting his way through the USO draw.
And yet despite all of that I, as well as everyone else (except perhaps one *very* happy British woman) completely wrote him off for the final. No way this giant lug could beat the Maestro/The Federer/Rog. Fed was on a tear and it just didn't seem like Elf's time quite yet.
And for the second day in a row I am absolutely ecstatic when I say this: I was wrong.
DelPo would continue the form that took out Rafa in straights into the final. Except this time, when things got tight and he got down, he didn't throw up his hands and say "too good". He kept fighting, sticking to his game plan (BIG FOREHAND), and playing within himself. And as he did, he somehow wore down TMF and made him look...well...not so much TM.
It was a weird match all around for Roger. His lights out serving, which had previously shown no signs of wobbling, all of a sudden wobbled. Dude couldn't buy a first serve through the first few sets. That combined double digit double faults at key moments, as well as DelPo's lethal returning, ultimately led to Fed barely spinning serves in the fifth set. And once that serve went away, Fed looked concerned. That last set was an AO 09 redux. The forehand was flying all over the place and Fed looked frustrated.
So there you go. One of the most improbable upsets in a damn long time.
I'm not going to pretend that the entire tennis world is happy about this result. But no matter how cold your heart is, you can't ignore the feel-goodiness of this result.
And if you're still pissy about it, I give you the children of Tandil. Come on.
Welcome to the big leagues, dude. You've earned it.