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Roger Federer as Religious Experience

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Uploaded on Jul 31, 2007

"If you've never seen [Roger Federer] play live, and then do, in person, on the sacred grass of Wimbledon, ... you are apt to have what one of the tournament's press bus drivers describes as a "bloody near-religious experience." It may be tempting, at first, to hear a phrase like this as just one more of the overheated tropes that people resort to to describe the feeling of Federer Moments. But the driver's phrase turns out to be true — literally, for an instant ecstatically." -- David Foster Wallace, from the special to New York Times' Play Magazine, "Roger Federer as Religious Experience"

"To bear witness ... is to evoke some sort of spiritual experience that occurs only a handful of times in a lifetime - if you're lucky. To try to describe the way Federer plays tennis is like trying to describe how Nureyev danced or Heifetz played the violin. Common words or images cannot do justice." --The Age

"Part of the pleasure of the Federer experience comes from watching people watch him. On Sunday, a spectator is propelled by awe out of his seat when confronted by a short cross-court forehand that lands and runs almost parallel to the net. Later, a fellow simply bows in Federer's direction, as if applause is an unsatisfactory response. ... Some sigh, exhale, cry "Oh my God". It is an opera of exclamation. Cynics who believe they have seen everything need to watch Federer. ... How, how, we ask, as if mind is still disputing what the eyes have seen. With other players, even in other sports, we sometimes see their shots as beautiful, we wish we could play like that. With Federer we accept almost that we can never play like that, his shots arrive from another dimension, it is too much to wish for." -- Rohit Brijnath, The Hindu

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