Roger’s a man’s man, he always finds the right spot
OKAY. I’ll admit it. I have a huge man crush on Roger Federer. He’s right up there near the top of the list, maybe even in the top three. Top five for sure. I think it has to do with the way he moves around the tennis court, how he dominates the baseline, his ball control, that pleasing serve, the signature backhand, a powerful forehand. He knows when to strike and when to play it cool. Rafa Nadal always seems to be so frantic, Novak Djokovic too smug and Andy Murray is a Scotsman when he loses and an Englishman when he wins.
Not the Swiss maestro. He looks to be a man’s man. He always seems to find the right spot. It’s almost orgasmic. Everytime I talk about him, I think I gush, wax lyrical and might even blush a bit while vigorously fist-pumping the air. I celebrate his victories and lament his defeats as if they were my own.
Sure, age is catching up with him and every so often he comes up short. It doesn’t change my admiration for him – he is still the best tennis player there ever was.
Back in a more rebellious youth, Hunter Kennedy of Fokofpolisiekar enjoyed the status as my top man crush. He still might. Kennedy had the singular ability to string Afrikaans words together that spoke to the soul, that defined feeling, revealed a commonality in spirit and creating new awareness and understanding. His reality, expressed in his lyrics – modern day poetry – shaped a generation’s world-view.
Springbok and Lions captain Warren Whiteley is also up there on my list.
I suspect he has replaced another Springbok and Lions legend, flanker Wikus van Heerden, who helped the Boks to the 2007 World Cup championship, won Super Rugby with the Bulls and the Currie Cup with the Lions.
A best mate of mine has a similar affection but for Patrick Lambie. He swears by the Springbok flyhalf, proudly declaring if he could put a poster up of the pivot on his bedroom wall, he would. It’s at times like those his soon-to-be wife raises a fearful brow, then nods her head as if to approve. I suspect she silently questions her choices. I kind of get his love for the Sharks man, although I prefer Bulls No 10 Handré Pollard.
The same goes for that beast of a footballer Diego Costa, who barges and bullies his way around the pitch for Chelsea in the Premier League.
Blokes like Federer, Whiteley, Van Heerden, Lambie and Kennedy look like they are the type of dudes you can enjoy a beer with or have a passiveaggressive moment between mates at a braai to decide who’s going to flip the meat in an alpha-male showdown. Not so much Costa. Methinks he takes what he wants, whether you smaak it or not. But if there was a chap who could pacify him, it would be Federer – the lesser flustered and always calm and collected champion of 17 Grand Slam titles. Come Sunday afternoon, hopefully, it will be 18 after he reached the final of the Australia Open by beating compatriot Stan Wawrinka yesterday.
If that happens, and fingers-crossed it does, I suspect the whole world will gush, wax, blush and fistpump with me.