The domination of the Fab Four - Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray - has prevented numerous talented players from winning the most important tournaments. Federer, Nadal and Djokovic have won 56 of the last 67 Slams played, including the last 13.
Gilles Simon, former World number 6 and winner of 14 titles in the major circuit, wrote an article for the ATP website, in which he expressed the innumerable difficulties in finding himself playing in the same era of these authentic champions.
Stan Wawrinka's triumph at the US Open 2016 represented the last success in a Major of a player who is not included in the magical triad.
Simon: 'The Big 3 are just martians'
"I feel like we need young players to play great tennis.
Tennis was suffering for too long, as the new generations have not been good enough to beat the Big Four. It’s not saying anything bad about guys like Milos Raonic or Kei Nishikori or anyone from their generation, because those guys are super good.
It just shows how good Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray were. Even being 20 years older than some of the new players, they still beat them because they are just martians. It’s crazy to be that good for that long every single tournament, every single week.
At first, I was kind of happy that the new players were not able to beat them, because I’ve had that feeling my whole career. Of course we want to win a Grand Slam. Maybe it sounds like an excuse, but with these guys it was impossible" - Gilles Simon wrote.
"However, because the Big Four are getting older, they have to play a bit less, so there is a bit more of an opening. It’s great to see new players starting to come through. Now I’m happy if the young guys can finally beat them.
We need that for the sport. I think this new generation of players, many of whom are under 23 years old, they play super good. They will lead the sport in the future and I’m really happy to see that. I think especially this most recent generation of players is really attractive.
There are players with many different styles, and different personalities, too. You take guys like Denis Shapovalov and Felix Auger-Aliassime, then you have the young American guys who are a very good generation of players.
Stefanos Tsitsipas can have an amazing game, Sascha Zverev too. I feel it’s a great generation in terms of personality. Guys like Felix, Karen Khachanov, Daniil Medvedev. They are not just good players, but they are super nice guys and very good people.
That’s going to help them. They are bringing a lot of variety to the court. We need that because Novak, Rafa and Roger were leading the sport forever. At some point, they’re going to stop" - he finished.
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