Why Roger Federer is better than Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. The Big Three in comparison: in this second article we will try to understand if and why the Swiss Maestro is better than his two great rivals. In the next two article we will see if Nole is the best.
Roger Federer is considered today as one of the greatest players in history, perhaps the best ever. There are reasons to believe that Federer is currently the best tennis player in activity, even stronger than Nadal and Djokovic.
The Swiss's detractors will object immediately: "Federer is at a disadvantage in head-to-head against both Nadal and Djokovic." They would also say: "Novak Djokovic defeated Federer in the last important matches they played, especially in the Slams."
This is true, but Federer can boast many other firsts that his two rivals haven't, and that certify his greatness. To date Federer holds the record of Slam won: 20. A number that neither Rafa nor Nole have, although the Spaniard and the Serb are very close to the Swiss' record.
Federer holds the record of titles won at Wimbledon (8), the oldest and most prestigious tournament in the world. It will be impossible for Rafa to even get close. Nole is still distant. The Swiss holds the record of number of weeks at the top of the ATP ranking: 310, a much more important numbers than those of his two rivals.
He also holds the record of ATP Finlas titles, 6, more than Nadal and Djokovic put together. Federer holds the absolute record of titles on hard-courts and on grass-courts, a goal that his two rivals can hardly match, especially on grass-courts.
Federer is the only tennis player in history to have spent at least 200 weeks in each of the top three positions of the ATP ranking: Nadal and Djokovic are far from this achievement. He spent the most consecutive top-2 weeks (346) ahead of Djokovic (325), and also the most top-3 overall weeks (750) ahead of Nadal (605).
Roger is the player who has spent the most total weeks in top 5 (831), top 10 (908), top 20 (989) and top 30 (1012, streak still underway since 30 October 2000).
Numbers and statistics: that's why Roger Federer is better than Nadal and Djokovic?
He is the only tennis player in history to have made five consecutive wins in two different Slam tournaments, Wimbledon 2003-2007, and the US Open 2004-2008.
Federer is the only tennis player in history to have won at least 3 Slams from 35 years on: Australian Open 2017 at 35 years-old and 5 months, Wimbledon 2017 at 35 years-old and 11 months and Australian Open 2018 at 36 years-old and 5 months.
Will Nadal and Djokovic be able to be so competitive at that age? About Wimbledon: Federer is the only tennis player to have played seven consecutive finals in the most prestigious tennis event of the Game: from 2003 to 2009.
Not only that; Roger is the only tennis player in history to have won Wimbledon and the US Open for four consecutive years, from 2004 to 2007. Talking about the Slams: he holds the absolute record of consecutive finals in Grand Slam tournaments: 10 (from Wimbledon in 2005 to the US Open in 2007), the absolute record of finals played in Slam tournaments (31) and the absolute record of semifinals reached consecutively in the Majors: (23, from Wimbledon 2004 to the Australian Open 2010).
Is this not enough? Federer also achieved the absolute record of semifinals reached in Slam tournaments (46), of consecutive quarterfinals (36) and of total quarterfinals reached (57). Contrary to what many of his followers still believe, Federer holds the record of matches won on the fifth set (30), ahead of Sampras (29).
He is also the only tennis player in history to have played all the four Slam finals for three years (2006, 2007, 2009). This may be the answer: with these data we can say that Roger Federer is better than Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic, but in the next article we will find out if this is true or not.