Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer were the absolute protagonists of an almost unrepeatable era for the men's circuit. The Big 3 currently share the all-time Slam record of 20, after the number 1 in the world cleared the gap by winning eight of the last 12 Majors played.
However, for the Serbian champion a disappointment came at the Tokyo Olympics, having been defeated in the semifinals by an excellent Alexander Zverev. Ahead of a set and a break, the 34-year-old from Belgrade was the victim of a sharp psycho-physical decline, so much so that he was no longer able to stem the German's power.
His dream of achieving the 'Calendar Golden Slam' has therefore vanished, a titanic undertaking that only Steffi Graf was able to complete in 1988. Nole, who will be engaged in the final for the bronze against Carreno Busta, will have to recharge his batteries in view of the US Open.
A possible success in New York would allow him to seal the Grand Slam, in addition to detaching (perhaps definitively) the eternal rivals Roger and Rafa. In a recent interview with 'The Associated Press', his compatriot Viktor Troicki spoke out on the age-old issue of the GOAT.
Viktor Troicki on the Big 3
Viktor Troicki recently gave his thoughts on the GOAT race involving Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. According to the Serb, Djokovic has shot ahead of his two rivals with his recent achievements.
“Already now, it’s obvious that he’s (Novak Djokovic) the greatest in our sport,” Troicki told Andrew Dampf of The Associated Press in an interview. “The greatest ever to play and to achieve so many records.
They’re both great champions, both Rafa and Roger, and I admire what they’ve done. But really Novak has (reached) new heights and he’s for sure not going to stop here. He’s going to prove that he’s the best ever player”.
According to Troicki, Djokovic is not as popular as Federer and Nadal as he arrived on the scene much later than his two rivals. “There is no point of talking again and again about that question,” Troicki said.
“Roger and Rafa came first. Novak came after them, from a small country, Serbia. ... Some people are just more for Roger and Rafa because Novak came after them. Novak has his fans”. Even after a disappointing result at the Tokyo Olympics 2020, Djokovic is still on the verge of registering his name in the history books. He has already won three Grand Slam titles this year and will be eyeing the US Open 2021 title now.