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June 9, 2009

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Roger Federer Becomes Greatest Ever

Roger Federer’s recent win at the French Open makes him the greatest male tennis player ever. He becomes only the sixth man in history to win all four grand slam titles – the Australian Open, the U.S. Open, the French Open and Wimbledon. His victory in Paris also saw him equal Pete Sampras’ record of 14 major titles. Federer knew the significance of his win the second he won. He fell to the ground and cried. His tears were a mixture of joy and relief. He had finally won the French Open in his fourth successive final in France. As he raised the trophy, it seemed as though the weight of history lifted from his shoulders. Federer may go on to further greatness. If he wins the upcoming Wimbledon tournament, he’ll be the only man to win 15 grand slams.


Federer was in dominant form throughout the final. He raced to a 6-1 lead in the first set against his opponent Robin Soderling from Sweden. Soderling put up a challenge in the second set, which Federer won on a tie-break 7-1. A break of serve in the third set gave Federer the victory he so desired. After the match, he said: "This was my greatest victory. I can now go the rest of my career without worrying that I would never win the French Open.” Soderling knew he had played against the best. He told Federer: "To me you are the greatest player in history." Federer was unsure whether or not this was true, saying: "I don't know if we'll ever know who was the greatest of all time but I'm definitely happy to be right up there."


 
 

WARM-UPS

1. TENNIS: Walk around the class and talk to other students about tennis. Change partners often. Sit with your first partner(s) and share your findings.

2. CHAT: In pairs / groups, decide which of these topics or words from the article are most interesting and which are most boring.

 

winning / greatest males / tennis titles / tears of joy / trophies / history / tournaments / dominance / opponents / challenges / victories / worrying / careers / being happy

Have a chat about the topics you liked. Change topics and partners frequently.

3. GREATEST EVER: Who is the greatest ever? Complete this table with your partner(s). Talk about what you wrote to your partner. Change partners and share what you heard. Vote as a class on who is the greatest ever in each category.

Category

Why?

Tennis player

 

World leader

 

Business person

 

Actor

 

Singer

 

Person

 

4. TENNIS: Students A strongly believe men’s sports are more exciting than women’s; Students B strongly believe the opposite.  Change partners again and talk about your conversations.

5. RIGHT UP THERE: Would you like to be right up there among the best ever? Rank these in order of which you would like to be the best ever. Change partners and share your rankings.

   _____  sports player

   _____  politician

   _____  actor

   _____  artist

   _____  scientist

   _____  writer

   _____  business person

   _____  adventurer

6. GREATEST: Spend one minute writing down all of the different words you associate with the word ‘greatest’. Share your words with your partner(s) and talk about them. Together, put the words into different categories.


 
 

BEFORE READING / LISTENING

1. TRUE / FALSE: Look at the article’s headline and guess whether these sentences are true (T) or false (F):

a.

Roger Federer has become the greatest player in tennis history.

T / F

b.

Federer equaled the number of grand slam titles held by Pete Sampras.

T / F

c.

Federer fell over after his win and cried in pain.

T / F

d.

The trophy was too heavy for Federer to lift above his shoulders.

T / F

e.

It was a very evenly matched final in all three sets.

T / F

f.

Federer said he views his first Wimbledon triumph as his greatest win.

T / F

g.

Federer's opponent thinks  Rafael Nadal is the greatest ever player.

T / F

h.

Federer said he didn’t know who was the greatest ever tennis player.

T / F

2. SYNONYM MATCH: Match the following synonyms from the article:

1.

ever

a.

combination

2

victory

b.

uncertain

3.

equal

c.

surely

4.

mixture

d.

win

5.

tournament

e.

wanted

6.

dominant

f.

rival

7.

opponent

g.

in history

8.

desired

h.

championship

9.

unsure

i.

match

10.

definitely

j.

commanding

3. PHRASE MATCH: Match the following phrases from the article (sometimes more than one. combination is possible):

1.

Roger Federer’s recent win

a.

lifted from his shoulders

2

only the sixth man in history to win all

b.

of joy and relief

3.

His victory in Paris also saw him equal

c.

not this was true

4.

His tears were a mixture

d.

form

5.

it seemed as though the weight of history

e.

at the French Open

6.

Federer was in dominant

f.

right up there

7.

He raced to a 6-1

g.

four grand slam titles

8.

Soderling knew he had played against

h.

the best

9.

Federer was unsure whether or

i.

Pete Sampras’ record

10.

I'm definitely happy to be

j.

lead

WHILE READING / LISTENING

GAP FILL: Put the words into the gaps in the text.

Roger Federer’s ____________ win at the French Open makes him the greatest male tennis player ever. He becomes only the sixth man in ____________ to win all four grand slam titles – the Australian Open, the U.S. Open, the French Open and Wimbledon. His victory in Paris also saw him ____________ Pete Sampras’ record of 14 major titles. Federer knew the significance of his win the ____________ he won. He fell to the ground and cried. His tears were a mixture of joy and ____________. He had finally won the French Open in his fourth successive final in France. As he ____________ the trophy, it seemed as though the weight of history lifted from his shoulders. Federer may go on to ____________ greatness. If he wins the ____________ Wimbledon tournament, he’ll be the only man to win 15 grand slams.

 

 

 

raised
equal
recent
upcoming
further
history
relief
second

Federer was in dominant ____________ throughout the final. He raced to a 6-1 lead in the first set against his ____________ Robin Soderling from Sweden. Soderling put up a challenge in the second set, which Federer won on a tie-break 7-1. A break of serve in the third set gave Federer the victory he so ____________. After the match, he said: "This was my greatest ____________. I can now go the rest of my ____________ without worrying that I would never win the French Open.” Soderling knew he had played ____________ the best. He told Federer: "To me you are the greatest player in history." Federer was ____________ whether or not this was true, saying: "I don't know if we'll ever know who was the greatest of all time but I'm ____________ happy to be right up there."

 

 

desired
career
definitely
victory
form
opponent
unsure
against

LISTENING:  Listen and fill in the gaps.

Roger Federer’s recent win at the French Open ____________________ male tennis player ever. He becomes only the sixth man in history to ____________________ slam titles – the Australian Open, the U.S. Open, the French Open and Wimbledon. His victory in Paris ____________________ Pete Sampras’ record of 14 major titles. Federer knew the significance of his win the second he won. He fell to the ground and cried. His tears were a mixture ____________________. He had finally won the French Open in his fourth successive final in France. As he raised the trophy, it seemed as though the ____________________ lifted from his shoulders. Federer may go on to further greatness. If he wins the upcoming Wimbledon tournament, he’ll be ____________________ 15 grand slams.

Federer was in dominant ____________________ final. He raced to a 6-1 lead in the first set against his opponent Robin Soderling from Sweden. Soderling ____________________ the second set, which Federer won on a tie-break 7-1. A break of serve in the third set gave Federer the victory he so desired. After the match, he said: "This was ____________________. I can now go the rest of my career without worrying that I would never win the French Open.” Soderling knew ____________________ the best. He told Federer: "To me you are the greatest player in history." Federer was ____________________ this was true, saying: "I don't know if we'll ever know who was the greatest of all time ____________________ to be right up there."


 
 

AFTER READING / LISTENING

1. WORD SEARCH: Look in your dictionaries / computer to find collocates, other meanings, information, synonyms … for the words ‘grand’ and ‘slam’.

grand

slam

 

 

 

  • Share your findings with your partners.
  • Make questions using the words you found.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

2. ARTICLE QUESTIONS: Look back at the article and write down some questions you would like to ask the class about the text.

  • Share your questions with other classmates / groups.
  • Ask your partner / group your questions.

3. GAP FILL: In pairs / groups, compare your answers to this exercise. Check your answers. Talk about the words from the activity. Were they new, interesting, worth learning…?

4. VOCABULARY: Circle any words you do not understand. In groups, pool unknown words and use dictionaries to find their meanings.

5. TEST EACH OTHER: Look at the words below. With your partner, try to recall how they were used in the text:

  • recent
  • four
  • equal
  • mixture
  • raised
  • upcoming
  • raced
  • challenge
  • desired
  • career
  • against
  • happy

STUDENT TENNIS SURVEY

Write five GOOD questions about tennis in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper.

When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

 

STUDENT 1

_____________

STUDENT 2

_____________

STUDENT 3

_____________

Q.1.

 

 

 

 

Q.2.

 

 

 

 

Q.3.

 

 

 

 

Q.4.

 

 

 

 

Q.5.

 

 

 

 

  • Now return to your original partner and share and talk about what you found out. Change partners often.
  • Make mini-presentations to other groups on your findings.

TENNIS DISCUSSION

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

a)

What did you think when you read the headline?

b)

What springs to mind when you hear the word ‘tennis’?

c)

Do you think tennis is one of the world’s greatest sports?

d)

What do you think of Roger Federer?

e)

Would you like to be the world’s best at something? What?

f)

What do you think Roger Federer feels like to be the greatest?

g)

What kind of person do you need to be to be the greatest?

h)

Have you ever cried with joy?

i)

What does “the weight of history lifted from his shoulders” mean?

j)

Have you ever won a trophy?

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

a)

Did you like reading this article?

b)

Why do you think tennis is so popular?

c)

When was the last time you were in dominant form?

d)

What do you really desire?

e)

What has your greatest victory been?

f)

What do you think it’d be like to be a great tennis player?

g)

How is tennis different from other sports?

h)

Would you prefer to be a tennis champion or an actor?

i)

Which of the four grand slams is best?

j)

What questions would you like to ask Roger Federer?

LANGUAGE

Roger Federer’s recent win at the French Open (1) ____ him the greatest male tennis player ever. He becomes only the sixth man (2) ____ history to win all four grand slam titles – the Australian Open, the U.S. Open, the French Open and Wimbledon. His victory in Paris also saw him (3) ____ Pete Sampras’ record of 14 major titles. Federer knew the significance of his win the second he won. He fell to the ground and cried. His tears were a mixture of (4) ____ and relief. He had finally won the French Open in his fourth successive final in France. As he (5) ____ the trophy, it seemed as though the weight of history lifted from his shoulders. Federer may go on to further (6) ____. If he wins the upcoming Wimbledon tournament, he’ll be the only man to win 15 grand slams.

Federer was in dominant (7) ____ throughout the final. He raced to a 6-1 lead in the first set against his opponent Robin Soderling from Sweden. Soderling (8) ____ up a challenge in the second set, which Federer won on a tie-break 7-1. A break of serve in the third set gave Federer the victory he so (9) ____. After the match, he said: "This was my greatest victory. I can now go the (10) ____ of my career without worrying that I would never win the French Open.” Soderling knew he had played against the best. He told Federer: "To me you are the greatest player in history." Federer was unsure (11) ____  or not this was true, saying: "I don't know if we'll ever know who was the greatest of all time but I'm definitely happy to be (12) ____ up there."

Put the correct words from the table below in the above article.

1.

(a)

makes

(b)

make

(c)

making

(d)

makers

2.

(a)

on

(b)

at

(c)

in

(d)

of

3.

(a)

equals

(b)

equality

(c)

equaled

(d)

equal

4.

(a)

joyous

(b)

joy

(c)

joyful

(d)

joys

5.

(a)

escalated

(b)

upped

(c)

increased

(d)

raised

6.

(a)

great

(b)

greater

(c)

greatness

(d)

greatest

7.

(a)

forms

(b)

form

(c)

former

(d)

forming

8.

(a)

put

(b)

placed

(c)

did

(d)

had

9.

(a)

desired

(b)

desire

(c)

design

(d)

designs

10.

(a)

rested

(b)

restive

(c)

rest

(d)

rests

11.

(a)

might

(b)

if

(c)

should

(d)

whether

12.

(a)

fight

(b)

right

(c)

light

(d)

height

WRITING: 

Write about tennis for 10 minutes. Correct your partner’s paper.

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

_____________________________________________________________________________

HOMEWORK

1. VOCABULARY EXTENSION: Choose several of the words from the text. Use a dictionary or Google’s search field (or another search engine) to build up more associations / collocations of each word.

2. INTERNET: Search the Internet and find out more about Roger Federer. Share what you discover with your partner(s) in the next lesson.

3. THE GREATEST: Make a poster about who you think the greatest people in the world are. Show your work to your classmates in the next lesson. Did you all have similar things?

4. RIGHT UP THERE: Write a magazine article about someone who has just become the greatest ever. Write about their career. Include an imaginary interview with that person.

Read what you wrote to your classmates in the next lesson. Write down any new words and expressions you hear from your partner(s).

5. LETTER: Write a letter to Roger Federer. Ask him three questions about his recent victory. Give him three reasons why he should believe he is the greatest ever. Read your letter to your partner(s) in your next lesson. Your partner(s) will answer your questions.

ANSWERS

TRUE / FALSE:

a.

F

b.

T

c.

F

d.

F

e.

F

f.

F

g.

F

h.

T

SYNONYM MATCH:

1.

ever

a.

in history

2

victory

b.

win

3.

equal

c.

match

4.

mixture

d.

combination

5.

tournament

e.

championship

6.

dominant

f.

commanding

7.

opponent

g.

rival

8.

desired

h.

wanted

9.

unsure

i.

uncertain

10.

definitely

j.

surely

PHRASE MATCH:

1.

Roger Federer’s recent win

a.

at the French Open

2

only the sixth man in history to win all

b.

four grand slam titles

3.

His victory in Paris also saw him equal

c.

Pete Sampras’ record

4.

His tears were a mixture

d.

of joy and relief

5.

it seemed as though the weight of history

e.

lifted from his shoulders

6.

Federer was in dominant

f.

form

7.

He raced to a 6-1

g.

lead

8.

Soderling knew he had played against

h.

the best

9.

Federer was unsure whether or

i.

not this was true

10.

I'm definitely happy to be

j.

right up there

GAP FILL:

Roger Federer becomes greatest ever

Roger Federer’s recent win at the French Open makes him the greatest male tennis player ever. He becomes only the sixth man in history to win all four grand slam titles – the Australian Open, the U.S. Open, the French Open and Wimbledon. His victory in Paris also saw him equal Pete Sampras’ record of 14 major titles. Federer knew the significance of his win the second he won. He fell to the ground and cried. His tears were a mixture of joy and relief. He had finally won the French Open in his fourth successive final in France. As he raised the trophy, it seemed as though the weight of history lifted from his shoulders. Federer may go on to further greatness. If he wins the upcoming Wimbledon tournament, he’ll be the only man to win 15 grand slams.

Federer was in dominant form throughout the final. He raced to a 6-1 lead in the first set against his opponent Robin Soderling from Sweden. Soderling put up a challenge in the second set, which Federer won on a tie-break 7-1. A break of serve in the third set gave Federer the victory he so desired. After the match, he said: "This was my greatest victory. I can now go the rest of my career without worrying that I would never win the French Open.” Soderling knew he had played against the best. He told Federer: "To me you are the greatest player in history." Federer was unsure whether or not this was true, saying: "I don't know if we'll ever know who was the greatest of all time but I'm definitely happy to be right up there."

LANGUAGE WORK

1 - a

2 - c

3 - d

4 - b

5 - d

6 - c

7 - b

8 - a

9 -a

10 - c

11 - d

12 - b

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