Who would have imagined that the 34-year-old nonpareil maestro of tennis would innovate a shot when he is approaching the end of the road? Roger Federer’s new trick shot -- SABR (Sneak Attack By Roger) -- that can launch a blitz attacking on the enemy, reminds of Darth Vader’s lightsaber.
Lately, tennis pundits have been lauding Sabr, and his fans too have gotten into a frenzied fever, except one particular Boris Becker, who has not fallen for its charm. Becker thinks Sabr isn’t unassailable.He is no way infatuated with Federer’s audacious double-edged shot, and seemed pretty forthright while mentioning the same during an interview with Sky Sports.
The 6-time Grand Slam champion, who constitute the serve-and-volley family, believes that Sabr wouldn’t have worked, had Federer played against opponents like him, Jimmy Connors or John McEnroe, who can counterpunch.
Becker however didn’t forget to give due credits to Federer for the latter’s impeccable execution of that cheeky shot, but he didn’t sound overly impressed as well. There is nothing surprising about Becker’s demur, especially if you recall his reaction when Federer hit a Sabr in Cincinnati against Djokovic.
Becker was sort of taken aback; his expression says it all. Meanwhile Federer told Mats Wilander how he improvised the much-talked shot, during an interview with the Eurosport. Sabr was born when a jet lagged Federer was hitting balls with Frenchman Benoit Paire ahead of the Cincinnati Masters.
Both the players weren’t in a good shape, but decided to go on with the practise as they had to. A tired Federer decided to take the ball early, and moved forth to hit a half-volley to shorten the point, et voila, the Sabr was born, and it was spectacular. Federer fell in love with that shot, he tried it again, and it worked.
His coach Severin Luthi had an idea -- why not try the same in big matches? Rest is history.