WTA legend on the gap between Roger Federer, Nadal, Djokovic and the Next Gen

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WTA legend on the gap between Roger Federer, Nadal, Djokovic and the Next Gen

The Big 3 have dominated men's tennis for nearly two decades. During this time, they have totaled a total of 60 Grand Slams and 100 titles at Masters 1000 level. Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal have been affected by several injuries in recent months, so much so that they have moved away from the top positions.

The Swiss champion has just turned 40 and has not gone beyond the quarterfinals at Wimbledon as his best result in 2021. King Roger has played just five tournaments since his return to the tour last March, with a balance that is anything but exciting in relation to its old standards.

The situation is different for Nadal, who is dealing with a serious foot problem that threatens to force him to forfeit the US Open. The Majorcan has given up on the Masters 1000 in Toronto and Cincinnati, a very bad sign when the last Grand Slam of the season is a couple of weeks away.

Novak Djokovic, for his part, will try to complete a historic 'Calendar Grand Slam' in New York. In a recent interview with Stuart Miller for 'Tennis.com', WTA legend Martina Navratilova reiterated that the Big 3 are far superior to the Next Gen.

Navratilova on the Big 3

“These younger players are just not as good as the Big Three,” Martina Navratilova said . “Those three are just on another level. They are amazing”. While many reckon that Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, and Novak Djokovic have the edge over the younger players due to their experience and mental fortitude, Navratilova believes that is not the case.

“If you had all these players try to hit a target on a practice court where there’s no pressure, Rafa would just hit the target more than them," she said. "These guys have to play slightly above their level just to get to finals, and so their average day is not as good”.

That said, Navratilova believes that the younger players still have room for improvement. “If you’ve been in the Top 10 without improving for four or five years then maybe you have found your level,” Navratilova said.

“Otherwise, it’s not too late for them to keep improving. And as their games grow, their confidence will grow and then they may be the ones with the mental edge”. Reflecting on Djokovic’s season so far, he began his season in Melbourne and came back home winning his 18th Grand Slam title.

After that, he came to the French capital high on confidence and won his second title at Roland Garros. His win over 13-time champion Rafael Nadal was one of the highlights of the season.