Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal are unanimously considered two of the best tennis players of any era. The two legends of the modern era are now paired at 20 Grand Slams, after yet another winning ride by the Spaniard at Roland Garros.
For the fourth time in his career, the Majorcan won the Parisian Grand Slam without giving up a single set, in addition to avenging the shame suffered by Novak Djokovic at the Australian Open 2019. Thanks to the two victories obtained in Vienna, Nole has practically guaranteed the certainty to close the year at the top of the world ranking for the sixth time, equaling the record of his idol Pete Sampras.
It goes without saying that the dominance of the Big 3 over the past decade and a half has prevented numerous talented players from posting Grand Slam titles. One of these is undoubtedly Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, finalist at the Australian Open 2008 and great French hope along with Gael Monfils and Richard Gasquet.
In a recent conversation on Twitch, Jo shared several anecdotes about the three sacred monsters.
Tsonga on Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal
"We have the three best players of all time who have played the 15 years that we have played.
It was not easy to be compared to Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. We were 5-6-7th. We all pushed our tennis to the maximum of what we could at one point. We don't have to be ashamed of what we did," Jo-Wilfried Tsonga said.
"When I was going to play Hewitt, I was told 'It's going to be hard' I said, 'But no it's my pigeon, I'm used to it, he never beat me' The guy was World No. 1, he won Majors, he was a huge player, but he has nothing on Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, or Novak Djokovic," Tsonga said.
Former World No. 7 Richard Gasquet, who was once called the most promising young French payer, revealed that he still gets congratulated for having defeated Rafael Nadal in the final of the 'Les Petits As' more than two decades ago.
"In the streets and in clubs, I have heard the 'You beat Rafael Nadal at Les Petits As' a thousand times," Gasquet revealed. Gael Monfils was quick to defend his countrymen, pointing out that Roger Federer, for all his greatness, has only won the French Open once in his career.
"Why didn't the French win Roland? Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic, tennis legends, they won it only once. This is completely crazy. We are far from being Roger and he won it once," Monfils remarked.