The last seven Grand Slam tournaments were won by players over 30. There were times when 17-year olds, Mats Wilander, Michael Chang or Boris Becker, were winning the Grand Slams. Is it possible to see it again? Roger Federer tried to answer it during a conference call in Halle.
'Good question. I’m not exactly sure what the secret is that the older guys are doing well. I think it could happen again that 17, 18, 19-year olds can win Grand Slams and I think it will happen. There is no doubt about it.
I just think it depends on the generation. I don’t care how much work you put in you also need to have luck that the talent was there, the framework was there by parents and coaches and so forth, and maybe the country, the support system you have from the federation or whatever it was, that it all just works out perfectly and that you win that Grand Slam final on top of it as well like what Chang did, or (Pete) Sampras did, or (Bjorn) Borg, or Rafa (Nadal) and so forth, Becker also, when they were teenagers. It’s amazing to me to win Slams at such a young age.
So, I think you also need a bit of luck maybe. But I think it could happen again. And I think as players stay hungrier for longer and maybe we have also taken care of our bodies more professionally than the generations did in the past, which is natural, you know, we have the means to travel easier, to have a physio or a massage therapist, a fitness coach and so forth.
I think it all kept us on the Tour for longer and healthier. So, we can play for a longer period of time as well which the older generation didn’t have. They all retired between the age of 28 and 32 and now we all play into our mid-thirties almost.
So, we also have longer opportunities and maybe because of this, we give younger players a more difficult route to success. I’m not sure, maybe that can explain it. I’m not entirely sure. That’s my take anyway.' ALSO READ: Roger Federer says rivalry with Rafael Nadal is much different now