In the 2014 Davis Cup final between Switzerland and France it was so refreshing seeing Roger Federer and Stanislav Wawrinka reunite a doubles partnership that saw them claim a gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Both players approached the net with grace and ease. Seeing the great Federer serve and hit beautifully angled volleys was delightful; a playing style his coach Stefan Edberg was renowned for.
Tactically, they should be declared unbeatable with Wawrinka, who possess the world’s best one hand backhand covering the advantage side, and Federer who has the world’s most legendary fore-hand, covering the deuce side.
The French doubles team consisting of Richard Gasquet and Julien Benneteau, who were bronze medallists at the London Olympics, must have pondered their fate before the match even began.
They may have seen a glimmer of hope as Federer lost his opening singles rubber to the maverick Frenchman Gael Monfils. The surprise result leaving most Swiss fans wondering if Federer was fit enough to compete as he had withdrawn from the Masters final in London a week earlier.
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It was also reported that there may be a rift in the Swiss camp due to Wawrinka asking Federer’s box to be quiet between serves when the two compatriots met in the semi-finals of the same tournament.
Historic Swiss Victory
The Swiss duo dispelled these claims’ with a flawless 6-3, 7-5, 6-4 victory in the doubles rubber taking a 2-1 lead going into the reverse singles on the final day. Needing only one win to claim the Davis Cup, Federer beat Gasquet who replaced an injured Jo Wilfred Tsonga 6-4, 6-2, 6-2.
After the historic victory a tearful Federer paid tribute to his team mate and described the altercation with Wawrinka as a “heat of the moment” situation blown out of proportion by the media which was resolved with a five minute discussion afterwards.