Tuesday, May 26, 2009

sporting purity

I've blogged much about sport; about why Federer rocks etc. I argued that in a sense it is the very fact that Nadal is more admirable that makes Federer's play a better example of why we should care about sport at all.

Another way of thinking about it is this. In Federer's story, guts, mental strength, "finding a way to win" blah blah plays a relatively smaller role in his success than many other sporting greats.

He was exploiting the gaps between what was literally possible and what "what one does to get better", the things like training harder, eating better, seeing a psychologist etc. These things make people better at tennis, but also just about every other sport. Every sport demands the mental strength not to choke. What made Federer different were the things that are not replicable and enabled his success in tennis.

Good serving, forehands, backhands etc are components of good tennis, but those gaps between the possible and the replicable are the very essence of what tennis actually is.

What people like Federer do is the essence of sport.

The German Soccer Team approach to sport is not only boring, it is an existential threat to the point of the whole enterprise.

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