Felix Auger-Aliassime achieves unique feat following win over Rafael Nadal
by DZEVAD MESIC | VIEW 5033
Felix Auger-Aliassime, 22, has become the first player born in the 2000s to have clinched wins against each member of the Big Three - Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. On Tuesday, Auger-Aliassime defeated Nadal 6-3 6-4 at the ATP Finals.
Auger-Aliassime's first win over a Big Three came in 2021 Halle, when he defeated Federer 4-6 6-3 6-2. Two months ago at the Laver Cup - which was Federer's career-final tournament - Auger-Aliassime beat Djokovic 6-3 7-6 (3).
It should be noted that Laver Cup matches are counted by the ATP as main-level matches.
Auger-Aliassime on beating Nadal
Auger-Aliassime, who lost to Nadal in their first two main-level matches, revealed it didn't take him long to start believing that he could beat the Spaniard in Turin.
"When you're about to step on the court against a guy like him, you never know. You think, What if he plays amazing today, just too good for me, or I'm not playing my best, things aren't working for me. There's always an uncertainty.
But when the match started going, we were on serve in the first set, I was like, Look, I have a real chance of winning this. I felt like I was doing good things, I was comfortable in certain situations. I definitely believed that I could win," Auger-Aliassime said after beating Nadal.
Auger-Aliassime, who was beaten by Casper Ruud in his ATP Finals opener, felt everything in his game worked better against Nadal. “I think having one match here, I got used to the conditions on centre court. It helped me a lot.
I felt my game was better today. My serve was great and return and backhand was much better. I was hitting it with my more consistency and quality. When I am playing like this, I have proven I can compete and beat some of the best players in the world," Auger-Aliassime said.