He did it again today against Ferrero. Safin has developed the pattern of going deep into a grand slam, and then coming up small in the big matches. And that's a sin for someone of his size and ability!
Last year at Wimbledon, he could have beaten Goran in the quarters. But he lost a close one. Then in the U. S. Open, Safin made the semi's, where he came up small against Sampras in defense of his title.
Then this year at the 2002 Australian open, he reaches the final, but plays a dud of a match against Thomas Johansson.
Now at the French, he does well to get to the semi's. But then gets routined by Ferrero. Why is this happening to Marat?
Continuously coming up small in the big matches should not be a problem for Safin. Especially after winning the 2000 U.S. Open. That should have given him the confidence to win some of these matches. Asking him to win all of these matches is wrong. But he needs to win some of them, otherwise he will be a one slam wonder!
I think part of the problem is coaching. When Marat was working with Russian's Andrei Chesnokov and Andrei Volkov in 2000, he played his best tennis. Without a Russian coaching him, Marat's results have been mediocre and underacheiving!
That cannot be denied. I hope he see's the light and hires a Russian coach he can relate to. Something is missing from Safin's game. The question is, what is missing?
Something is missing. And I hope Marat finds out what it is so he can do something about it.
Udachi Marat! Have a great Wimbledon!