Since turning pro in 1998, Roger Federer has faced opponents from different eras of tennis. From Andre Agassi to Rafael Nadal, the Swiss star engaged in many rivalries to establish himself as one of the greatest players of all time.
Earlier this week, Federer appeared at a virtual event alongside wheelchair players Shingo Kunieda and Gordon Reid. During the event, he detailed how Navratilova's idea of playing online changed the way players played.
"In the past too, if you look at the women's game or the men's game. If you look at how Vilas and Borg had rallies, it was a lot like back and forth, back and forth. Or Chrissie Evert too, back and forth. And then someone like Navratilova comes in, and others, who always rush into the network, and then other players realize: 'Oh, this works too' The Swiss star mentioned this example to portray how others follow the idea, which it finally changes the game.
"It only takes one person to give that idea to others, and then more and more do it," Federer said. “And then the group comes and everyone tries. This is when the game is really changing. And then we'll see that probably too, moving forward."
Rusedski talks about Roger Federer
Greg Rusedski has explained why he thinks Roger Federer may never return to the ATP Tour following the latest setback on his knee injury. Federer announced prior to the US Open that he would need to undergo a third operation on his troublesome knee, ruling him out for the remainder of the year.
"He's defied logic for so long, you can only take so much," Rusedski told Express Sport. "I remember [Jimmy] Connors at 39 years of age getting to the semis at the US Open and we're like 'wow, this is unbelievable'
But Federer at 39 was still contending at Grand Slams but time doesn't stand still for anybody. We wish him a speedy recovery and hope to see him back in 2022, but it doesn't sound so optimistic. Maybe we'll see him one more time at Wimbledon but who knows.
If he can't win Grand Slams then he's probably not going to come back." Together, the Big 3 of Federer, Nadal and Djokovic have totally rewritten the history books. And to make sense of their collective assault on records, it is natural for us to turn to statistics.
But in doing so, we might be overlooking an essential component of their greatness – that it extends beyond their accomplishments on the court. Mind-boggling figures are a prerequisite in the pursuit of greatness, yes, but after a point the intangibles take over.