What happens to the three best tennis players in the world? The gods of sports under the net, with a fast ace, shots at hundreds of kilometers per hour and stellar earnings seem to surrender to physical problems. It seems like a strange coincidence this winter between 2020 and 2021.
The evil wizard has raged against Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. And it is not Covid this time that stops them a step away from red earth and blue earth. Everything revolves around two tournaments. The one in Melbourne, which has just finished, and the one in Rotterdam, which is due to start on Monday 1 March.
Before the ATP tournament in Australia, which was later won by Djokovic over Medvedev, Federer raised the white flag. One of the 'big guys' on the world circuit had to say goodbye to commitment. He reluctantly remained in his Switzerland to treat an annoying knee injury that left him no other decision to make is already since June 2020, when the Swiss athlete underwent surgery, he fights against the bitter reality of a right knee from cure.
And he creates anxieties and expectations. Still in doubt to start again in these hours, he counts the damages of the King Roger waivers as does Nadal. Already starting in Melbourne, the back pain held back the Spaniard many times and during the quarter-final which he later lost to Tsitsipas at the Australian Open, the 13-time Roland Garros champion suffered excruciating pain.
And then also for Rotterdam, which comes immediately after, he said 'no' He had to do it a few days before the start of the tournament, when he wanted to get off to a great start for the current Grand Slam season. Marin Cilic recently spoke at length about Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal, highlighting the similarities and the differences in their playing styles.
Cilic claimed that Nadal and Djokovic play each point as if it was their last, whereas Federer gives more importance to dictating the pace of the match.
Cilic reflects on Roger Federer's game
The 2014 US Open champion also opined that Roger Federer is a proactive mover on the court who, with his remarkable agility, can cover ground very effectively.
"Not saying that Roger Federer isn't (intense), but Roger is more focused on change of pace, change of speed," Marin Cilic said. "He's having to rely a lot of his game - on a fast game, great serve, great forehand, you know, just mixing up the game and playing aggressive tennis and also playing fast.
I will change the attribute fast to athletic, very athletic tennis in terms of stepping inside the court, coming to the net, being really really quick with his movements. His sharpness is incredible." He also added: "And Novak and Rafa are the best guys in tennis that create pressure," Cilic remarked.
"You're always feeling like they're pushing you and, and also depends on you how long you can resist, you know, if when you're playing Grand Slam matches against them, you need to be there for hours, five hours to be able to match them up."