THE Wimbledon Championships are a great occasion but they play hell with your social life. On Sunday, once Roger Federer had got back into the Men's FInal after a disastrous start, it was impossible to leave the TV set until this matter had been settled. I have seen the game described as the “greatest ever” but that is true only of the evenness of the contest and the tension created by the constantly shifting fortunes within it. Nadal played magnificently but Federer was not at his best - a fact established by his count of 52 unforced errors, some of them of an almost embarrassing character - although his ability to stay in the game for so long despite them testifies to his greatness as a competitor. Rafael Nadal's win on grass only a month after his triumph on the very different clay surface at Paris is astonishing -- especially when one learns that between the two contests when he might have been training he found time to do a little fishing here on Majorca. On court his total concentration is deeply impressive, he has no obvious weakness and his ability not only to rescue himself from a difficult shot but to turn it into a winner of his own is phenomenal. But there is something else about Nadal: in victory he is a true sportsman whose generous tribute on Sunday to Federer as a tennis player and as a man went far beyond the conventional. Majorca and Spain have good reason to be proud of him.


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