Some jokers have managed to get hold of tickets today. Someone shouts "we love you, [player]" before another voice yells "we love you both!" and gets a bit of laughter from the crowd. The umpire isn't having it. "Please. Please."
He's been at The Stand the last couple of nights and can't handle any more weekend standup banter. It's difficult to do jokes that work in a room full of stag dos and hammered people but the best find a way. Speaking of that, Djokovic has just gone 15-30 up with a really smart disguised backhand across the court.�
Federer is a tennis robot programmed to destroy us all�and gets it back to 30-30, then 40-30. There's been a malfunction! Double fault for deuce.
Lovely stuff from Rog at the net. A disguised drop shot forces Djokovic to sprint and stretch so Federer can go 0-15 up with a volley. And that is sexy. Jeff Goldblum levels of sexy. Federer puts some extra hot sauce on his forehands, nearly catching out Djokovic with a couple, before playing a deft little slice drop just over the net and only just on the line. 0-30.�
Djokovic responds with a big serve for 15-30 and then the same for 30-30. Then it's 40-30. But a double fault takes it to deuce!
That boy Federer is awfully good though, isn't he? What is the best way to describe the noise of the tennis ball being struck back and forth? Ping pong is perfect for table tennis but this is more of a "thwumpck" - a combination of thump and thwack. Federer has thwumpcked the ball several times in this game and emerged victorious each time, getting�to 40-15 but wait - Djokovic has 15 whole points now! The same as one point. And now 30 points! The same as two.�
Federer's had enough, puts out his cigarette, gets on his horse and slams an Ace down the middle for game.
New balls = more speed. Djokovic backhands a stunner to get 30-0 up, the ball flying through the air. Federer is teed up for a volley with a bit of "chip and charge" which according to Boris Becker is underused on grass these days. Unfortunately it can only be used for tennis shots of a value less than �30 at the moment.
Anyway, Djokovic is now 40-15 up, Federer is sent scurrying around the court on the next point until Djokovic volleys for game.
Djokovic momentarily forgets where he is and awards Federer a gimme by hitting the ball with the solid bit of his racket rather than the stringy bit and Federer then sends him all over the court to get to 30-0. Djokovic returns a few at the net while sliding to reach but Federer volleys home for 40-0. It's going pretty quickly so far.�
And it's game.
Djokovic rushes to the net and plays a little drop shot as a reply to Federer's, but Federer then over-hits his attempted backhand and it's 15-0.�
Federer moves to the net in the next point but Djokovic forehand smashes the thing miles away from him at pace and goes 30-0 up.
Aaaaaaand now it's 40-15. Djokovic takes his time bouncing the ball, hits a strong second serve and Federer can only lift it into the air, the ball landing out. Game.�
Before I can type anything of interest, Djokovic is 0-30 up! Federer needs to rescue this one... and responds with a strong serve for 15-30. And another for 30-30. He's nae bad at the old tennis, this lad.
Djokovic howks a forehand return way out for 40-30 and Federer's powerful serve is back over the net but he's in control to finish off the game.�
Advantage Federer. Ohhhhhh can you feel the tension? Djokovic shoots wide but misses the line and now Federer could gain an early advantage. Djokovic fires a serve down the middle again but is wide, now second serve and Federer keeps slicing shots slow to Djokovic's backhand but eventually launches a forehand past him and out. Back to 40-40.
Djokovic has Advantage now and Federer keeps the rally going but again goes for that soft shot to Djokovic's backhand and is swiftly beaten by it. GAME!
Oooohhhh a double fault from Djokovic. He hits his next serve onto the net - let - and then into the net - fault - before a nice little rally, in which Federer powers a forehand to the back corner and it's out! Federer challenges but is way off.�
Djokovics gameplan is clearly going to be to make Federer run around a lot. I feel thats ageist.— David Baddiel (@Baddiel) July 14, 2019
At 30-15 Federer over-shoots again and at 40-15 Federer takes on a long shot which lands. So it's 40-30. BUT THEN DJOKOVIC PUTS HIS RETURN LONG AND IT'S DEUCE! Holy Robinsons. Big drama.
Djokovic responds to the pressure by launching a serve down the middle past Federer but goes to the net as he tries to catch him out and is beaten by a superb forehand back across court. Deuce.
Then it's advantage Djokovic again and Federer finds a brilliant forehand right to the line! Back to deuce.
Djokovic comes out the winner of a rally that lasts about 20 shots, Federer racing to the corners to return then hitting slow hanging shots so he has time to get back in line with T. Djokovic is just really good at tennis though and goes 15-0 up before Federer pulls it back to 15-15 and then 30-15. A powerful serve wide catches Djokovic out for 40-15.
Federer seems to catch the ball a little funny in the next rally, 40-30, but Djokovic's attempted drop shot hits the net. Game.
Federer smashes an Ace past Djokovic to start the match and Djokovic returns wide on the second point for 30-0. Then Federer shoots wide for 30-15 before smashing another Ace down the middle for 40-15. Roger has turned up.
And he underlines that, putting it in bold, pouring glitter all over it before posting to Djokovic's house, with a brilliant forehand in the next rally to win game.
�It's the Wimbledon women's champion, Simona Halep! Her match yesterday was brilliant fun to watch - Serena Williams was stunned from the very start. Halep played it like she'd found all the chaos emeralds before coming out to court and Williams basically didn't have a chance. Although she might have if she hadn't kept hitting all her backhands into the net.
Pat Cash is talking about Rod Laver and how he is called 'The Rocket' in Australia because Australians tend to give nicknames which are the opposite of the traits possessed by the person they are renaming. So because Laver was quite slow in his youth, he was called Rocket.
McEnroe goes "what? When was he slow?"�
Laver replies, "when he was young".�
McEnroe: "So what was your name then? Cool?"
Charlie Eccleshare is a great source of tennis knowledge and his piece on Djokovic's love/hate/love Wimbledon relationship is worth a read. A Telegraph Sport Premium subscription is �1 a week by the way.
Here's a bit of the article for FREE:
Wimbledons ambivalence toward Djokovic is highlighted by the contrast with its almost religious devotion to Federer, as will be evident in Sundays final.
Djokovic is used to this by now. In his first grand slam final 11 years ago, he had to wait for the whistles of the crowd to subside before he served on championship point against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. I know the crowd wanted him to win, a 20-year-old Djokovic said in his victory speech.
More than a decade on, Djokovic, for all his 15 grand slam titles, remains very much the third man of mens tennis. On Friday, his frustration at the crowds reverence for whoever hes playing got the better of him.
After losing the second set against Roberto Bautista Agut, Djokovic sarcastically asked the crowd to make even more noise for his opponent. At the end of a 45-shot rally to save a break point, Djokovic celebrated a backhand winner with a pointed shushing gesture.
Djokovic was similarly goaded at last years Wimbledon during a match against home favourite Kyle Edmund, and opted for diplomacy on Friday when he said: At times [the crowd] wanted him to come back to the match, maybe take a lead because he was an underdog in the match, I understand that. But I had enough support here over the years, so I dont complain.
I bet you can just tell you're going to be good in the actual match later by how you hit the first ball of your practise session. I don't play tennis so I don't really know, but if you're playing football and your very first touch kills the ball dead you suddenly are aware that today is the day the teddy bears have their picnic and you are the head bear. Conversely, if Djokovic heads out onto the court here and shanks his first little effort, still half asleep, he'll realise he should have had more coffee, or less, depending on which is better for talented people who are also athletes.�
"Look, I am focused on what I need to do. At times they wanted him (semi-final opponent Bautista Agut) to come back to the match, maybe take a lead because he was an underdog in the match. I understand that.
"But I had enough support here over the years, so I don't complain."
Strong words. I'm not sure anyone at Wimbledon has ever made anything approaching a negative noise towards Federer, presumably because they'd be immediately removed and placed in Wimbledon prison. Pretty sure that's what's below the grass in centre court.
Hello! Welcome to our liveblog for the men's singles final at Wimbledon 2019. It feels like the tournament only started last week but here we are, at its finale. Two of the best male tennis players in the history of tennis, tennising it out on the tennis court to decide who is the best tenniser of 2019. Who will it be?
In the white corner is Roger Federer, 58 years old, strong as an ox and with the power of Pete Sampras flowing through his mighty veins. In the opposite white corner is Novak Djokovic, 12 years old, eight stone, and 11 feet tall, slowed down by the weight of all the trophies he keeps in his pocket even when performing on the biggest stage of them all: centre court.�
In terms of head to head, Federer has the slightest of advantages, having won a total 69 sets to Djokovic's 67. Everything points towards this match going the full five sets, with a few 7-6 sets to make it last that extra bit longer.�
For me:Heart says FedererHead says DjokovicTwo great athletes battling it out at the Coloseum of Tennis.
Which gladiator will win it?— Jan Aage Fjortoft <� href="https://twitter.com/JanAageFjortoft/status/1150363543776182278?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">July 14, 2019
If Federer is the darling of Wimbledon, Djokovic is the second wife. I don't know if that makes sense. One thing I am certain of is that it would be pretty great if today's match were to last a shorter time than the men's doubles did yesterday. That game finished after four hours and 56 minutes, which you'll surely agree is too long for anything. No matter what it is you're doing, after four hours 30 minutes you know it's been too long. A Netflix binge, a day at the beach, being at work - it's too much time, and that's not even considering how tiring it must be to be one of the elite athletes actually competing.�
It rained in London last night and this morning but the forecast is clouds and tennis, so hopefully we aren't interrupted by any pesky droplets of water falling from the sky. You can follow all the action with us here, watch the game on BBC One or do both at the same time and marvel at the many new words I will attempt to use in place of 'hit', 'whack' and 'return' to denote tennis racket strikes of the ball.
Kick off is 2pm-ish.