Fortune favours the bold, it is said, but even if he was bold, Roger Federer was certainly favoured when any and all threats to his pursuit of his eighth Wimbledon victory and his record 19th Grand Slam win were forced out by injury.
The group that was unable to path through included Andy Murray, who finished his match in pain, Novak Djokovic, who resigned early in the second set, and Nick Kyrgios, whom everyone expects to rise to his true potential. Rafael Nadal was eliminated by a surprise opponent, so Federer had a clear path to the championship.
Federer played Marin Cilic in the final, but it was most a Federer exhibition, as it took him only an hour and 41 minutes to beat Cilic 6 – 3, 6 – 1, 6 – 4.
Cilic received treatment on his left foot during the late going, but the player who won the 2014 U.S. Open and eliminated Federer in straight sets in the semifinals in the process, was never able to raise his game to the level necessary to permit him to serve up his usual rockets or make his crisp volleys at the net.
Soon to turn 36 next month, Federer was probably a bit subdued by the route events permitted him to take, but he has been on both sides of that equation, and the records he established were most likely adequate compensation for the less than epic nature of the Gentleman’s singles in this year’s Championships.
Federer last won Wimbledon in 2012, when he was 31, and many thought that he was done after that.
Pete Sampras and William Renshaw, who won Wimbledon seven times in the late 1800s, were the two men Federer passed. Federer had opportunities to record number eight in 201 and 2015, but he ran into the Novak Djokovic buzz saw on those occasions.