The biggest upset on the men's side happened when Roger Federer was beaten in four sets by Tomas Berdych. I say upset rather than shock or surprise as I don't think that many people saw it as huge surprise, given how Fed had played this tournament, plus Berdych is a big server and Fed has been troubled by such servers recently and Berdych had beaten him the last time they'd played. Plus, he'd done really well at the French Open, putting out Murray amongst others. I know plutos_revenge was worried about Berdych and with good cause. But it was still a great upset -(
Fed revealed that he was sporting a injury to his thigh and back that prevented him from playing as he likes to, but that shouldn't take anything away from Berdych, who did play a good match and held his nerve at the end. If this Championship has proven one thing, it's the depth in the men's game is huge and it's no longer strange for a low ranked player to take a set or even two of the top players. But can they serve it out? Not always; so kudos to Berdych for hanging on in there, especially as he has been known to fall apart mentally in the past.
I am sorry to see Fed go out, I really am, and feel for his fans especially for my good friend plutos_revenge *Hugs again* A Wimbledon final without Fed, that's not something that's happened for many years. He says he'll bounce back and I think he will; he has Mirka and the twins and he's done it before. I don't for a moment think the game has seen the last of Fed at the top.
My favourite (thankfully) came through, but at the start of the match I really didn't think he would. At 0:5 down, I was calling a Nole vs. Murray final and thought Rafa would go out in straight sets. And somewhat worryingly it wasn't just the awesomeness of Soderling's play, because it was superb, but Rafa seemed almost sluggish and not moving as he normally does. But he bounced back to 3:5, lost the first set and went on to take the next three, 6:3, 7:6, 6:1.
The match wasn't without it's controversy mainly caused by the umpire; the sight of Rafa arguing with an umpire was a huge shock - but he was in the right. Soderling hit the line with a ball, just as Rafa hit it the linesman called 'out', Rafa hit the ball into the net; Soderling challenged and was right. Now the rule says because of the timing of the call the point should have been replayed, but instead he gave the point to Soderling. Cue the man who never argues to argue. But the umpire was unmoved and the call stood. Fortunately for Rafa fans, it actually seemed to fire Rafa up and he went on to win the point and played much better. What made the situation even more farcical was later in the match exactly the same thing happened but the other way round. This time the umpire ordered the point to be replayed. Plus, at one point Soderling served what anyone could see was an ace, he knew it, Rafa knew it, the line judge knew it, I knew it and the umpire over-ruled. Soderling challenged and he was right. Not the umpire's finest match.
And then we had the thing that really gets plutos_revenge enraged: a medical time-out just before the player not taking it is due to serve. In this case Rafa was due to serve for the set, Soderling sat down, called for the trainer and pulled his shoe off and just sat there. Some c. ten minutes later Rafa served for the set and not that surprisingly had is serve broken; he did go on to take the tie-breaker. John Lloyd was almost incandescent about it, saying it shouldn't be allowed and that Soderling should have been made to play on until the trainer appeared and you should request the trainer a game before the change over to allow him/her time to get there.
But all that aside, Rafa did play well - Soderling said so - an once we get past the first five games, it was the Rafa to which we are used. Fingers are still crossed for him.
In the other two quarter finals, Nole came through in straight sets against Lu and Murray won in four against Tsonga - but that I understand was quite a tussle and Tsonga had the opportunity to be two set to love up.
And other shocks of the day were the Williams sisters going out in the ladies' doubles and the Bryan twins going out in the men's. Has there been a Wimbledon in recent memory that has had quite so many shocks?
But some more good news, Kim Clijsters and her partner Xavier Malisse came through in the mixed doubles.
Today is ladies' semi finals day. I really do hope that Petra Kvitova can forget the fact she's in her first GS semi final, playing on Wimbledon Centre Court, against the World #01 and current Wimbledon champion and put aside the nerves she must have and play a jolly good game. I have to say I'd love to see her put Serena out, but in all honesty, I don't think she will. But then again in her 4th round match, she showed she has nerves of steel, so who knows?
The other semi-final between Vera Zvonareva and Tsvetana Pironkova will hopefully be more equal, although again you have the more experienced player in Zvonareva who has been in GS semis, albeit doubles, against the unseeded player who hasn't. But if Pironkova is still on a high from putting out Venus, who knows what can happen? Zvonareva went into her match with Kim as the underdog, this time she'll go in as favourite - that could have an adverse effect on her.
My ideal final: Kvitova vs. Pironkova. I think in that we could have a darn good final there as both players would start as equals in terms of experience and it could be good, as with the FO final. Do I think we'll get that? Sadly, no. I think Serena will prevail and thus the final on Saturday will be one-sided. But given how badly my 'calling' has been this Wimbledon (with the exception of what courts people will play on) one never knows.
plutos_revenge, have you come out of your corner yet? And do you need a top-up? *Hugs you some more*