Novak Djokovic Equals Rafael Nadal’s Weeks At No. 1
by Tom Gainey | April 6th, 2015, 10:09 am
  • 282 Comments

In addition to winning his 5th Miami Open title yesterday, Novak Djokovic hit another milestone in the last 24 hours. Djokovic, who’s been the ATP’s No. 1 since July 7, is now tied with rival Rafael Nadal at 141 weeks on top of the rankings.

With Nadal now ranked No. 5 and out of the No. 1 mix for the near future, Djokovic’s next target is John McEnroe at 170 weeks. He could reach McnEnroe if he stays on top at the end of October. Roger Federer leads all players at 302. To reach Roger, Djokovic would have to hold No. 1 for another 163 weeks, or just before the French Open in 2018!!

ATP Weeks At No. 1
Roger Federer (SUI) 302
Pete Sampras (USA) 286
Ivan Lendl (CZE) 270
Jimmy Connors (USA) 268
John McEnroe (USA) 170
Novak Djokovic (SRB) 141
Rafael Nadal (ESP) 141


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282 Comments for Novak Djokovic Equals Rafael Nadal’s Weeks At No. 1

RZ Says:

Another milestone for Djokovic. I don’t think this one got as much attention behind the Indian Wells-Miami triple.


jane Says:

true RZ. he’s guaranteed another 8 or so weeks, so he should reach 150 weeks for sure. whether he’ll surpass j-mac’s 170 is less sure as it will depend on his results. he has a number of points to defend.

b.t.w, too bad popsicle and sock lost, but it’s nice to see them continue to do well.


Felipe Says:

Djokovic will have a more “balanced and complete” carrer than Nadal. The guy is determined to be the best player of his generation. By the end of his career, i think that is possible and realistic to think that he can achieve the following:

Complete the career grand Slam (currently French open missing)
Win double digit slams (currently 8)
Spend more that 200 weeks at the top of the ranking (currently 141, and counting)
Win at least 5 WTF trophies (currently 4)
Win ALL master 1000 (currently missing Cincy)
Win at least 30 master 1000 trophies(currently 22)
Win gold medal at the Olympics (hard court) in Rio 2016
Win at least 70 titles (currently 51)


brando Says:

Never saw this one coming. Surpassing a injury prone player, with the tour 2 slams, wtf, 6 MS on your surface of choice also. A shocking occurrence. LOL: in all seriousness I never knew Jimmy Connors was number one for 268 weeks! And that’s ONLY number 4! For me in these stats it’s either 1, 2 or 3. Gold, silver, bronze. Beyond that I don’t really care. I mean who REALLY cared that Connors was 4 on this? No one. But seeing that he was there for such a length is shocking to an extent. I don’t see that top 4 changing at all for a long while.


brando Says:

Poor Felipe, consistently obsessed with Nadal. And apparently he’s a Federer fan. Poor soul: imagine the butthurt knowing Nadal has already achieved or near certain to achieve most of what he listed there. PS: Lendl has 270 weeks @1, over 90 titles, 5 or more WTF, 8 Grand slams etc. An illustrious career. But who is regarded higher: him or Nadal? LOL, poor Felipe with his Nadal obsession.


RZ Says:

@Jane – I had thought about it some time last year when I saw the list of weeks at #1 and figured that Djokovic would pass Nadal, mostly due to Nadal being out of action at the time. But really this came up with little fanfare. (Or maybe it’s because I don’t follow Djokovic as closely as I do other players).

It’s too bad that P-S lost the final to the Bryans, but I like that they have emerged as a power doubles team and are making the finals. If they play together consistently (difficult considering they are primarily singles players), they could very well become the “heirs-apparent” to the Bryan Brothers in terms of dominating the doubles tour.


Markus Says:

Nadal will never have a balanced career because he is so overwhelming exceptional on clay which has paradoxically masked how great he has been on other surfaces. Maybe if he had won only 4 French titles to approximate his slam wins on other surfaces, then he may be described as a balanced player. How ironic is that? Well anyway, great is better than balanced.


Felipe Says:

Brando, as today, Nadal is still ahead of Djokovic, nobody can deny that, and if both careers ended today, there is no doubt that Nadal is top 4 (in no particular order) with Laver / Sampras / Federer, (Borg is my number 5) while Djokovic is, at least in my book, top 10 (in no particular order) with / Lendl / Connors / Mcenroe/ Agassi.
If (im saying IF)Djokovic complete the carrer slam, wins double digit slams, wins 5 WTF, wins ALL masters 1000, spend more than 200 weeks at the top of the ranking, can we agree that Djokovic will officially be considered an all time great, and with a more succesfull career than Lendl/Connors/Agassi/Mcenroe?.
If he can achieve at least those numbers, in my humble opinion, he will have a more complete/balanced/rounded/consistent career than Nadal.
Djokovic is chasing Nadal, like Nadal is chasing Federer.
And im just a fan of Tennis, and in this era, every mayor tournament is a factor in the History books of the sport.


Markus Says:

That ubiquitous “IF” again.


brando Says:

@Markus: brilliant post! In a bizarre sense Nadal is the victim of his own success on clay as it makes him seem lesser on the other surfaces. He’s dominated clay in a fashion that even the likes of Sampras on grass seem far lesser to him, that Rafael had virtually no chance of being anywhere near it on other chances. I mean: how on earth can he – or anyone else- have 93% win ratio on HC or Grass? They cannot. It’s a freakish level. So he gets stigmatized for it as being poor elsewhere. Thankfully though that’s a view held by a few tools not the tennis community on large. Since how can one label him as poor elsewhere when: HARDCOURTS: 3 Grand slams, wins at AO, USO, 2 mere games away from winning 2 each both events, 7 MS wins, wins @ IW, Canada, Cincinnati, clean sweep of USO series, Olympics gold, wins @Dubai, China, Japan Open, leading Federer on outdoor HC etc. Quite obviously a abject player right? GRASS: 2 Wimbledon titles, 3 more finals, 5 finals in a row, a grass court clean sweep, winner of the all time great match on grass etc. That reads like a rubbish player to me. INDOOR: 2 WTF finals being runner up to average indoor players in Federer, Djokovic right? Clean sweeping the WTF field to reach those finals, wins a indoor MS title and also has been RU at Paris. Has wins v Federer, Djokovic in big matches on this surface also. Such a mug on his weakest surface right? LOL: Nadal actually is a complete player. His record and performance are actually testament to that. The fact that he NOT anyone else in over 40 years was ONLY 2 mere games away from winning all 4 Grand slams twice is fact alone to show he’s a complete player. Put simply: he’s won everything that is worth winning. Barring WTF. There too he’s been unlucky to face Federer, Novak, ie arguably 2 indoor GOATS. Yet: when Nadal loses to them there he’s just rubbish, but when they lose to Rafael at FO they were unlucky. The hypocrisy of that just stinks. But as I said earlier: its only a few voices here from the same old quarter, with the same old agenda against Rafael. You ask current and former pros about rafa and his game and watch them praise rafa lavishly. For his fan we’ll settle for that rather than the bile from bitter haters. Great post once again.


brando Says:

Which view should one cide with: Rafael Nadal: if does not exist in sports only what is. An anonymous hater with the name Felipe: if this, that. Yada, yada, yara. I know which I’m going with: the one who actually knows something about tennis over the one who only knows hate.


mat4 Says:

I am a Novak fan, but, with the experience from the past decades, I believe that I could be Novak’s last real great season. What he achieves this year, it will be it, most probably. His chances to get in the rarefied air of the Federer, Sampras, Nadal, he missed it from 2008 to 2011, for various reasons.

Will he win double digit slams? Not certain. But 8 is a decent number. 30 MS? I honestly think that it is out of reach. If he wins 25, I would be very happy. 200 weeks at no 1? It is possible, but to surpass JMac would already be a success. The career slams? It is possible too, but it is a difficult task. If he manages to beat Rafa at RG, it would make of him an all time great by itself. 5 WTF? 4 is already great.

Everything he wins now is a bonus. The same for Rafa. Their stats are very decent, and put them in the very top of the Open Era. And, while now only slams are important, in a decade or two, perhaps it will change, just like it changed a few times in the past. Let’s not forget that Laver stopped playing the Slams after 1972, that most of the top players skipped the AO, often the FO, even in the 80s. So, Novak’s and Rafa’s achievement will be assessed differently.

So, we can only wait and see, and enjoy while they play decently. For me, Novak doesn’t have to be in tennis history books. And it doesn’t matter if he is ranked third, fourth, or no 10. I’ll enjoy while he plays, and hope he will play many years more.


Hippy Chick Says:

Congrats to Novak on equaling Rafa with weeks at number 1,and as a Rafa fan im pretty cool with it,Rafa is still all time 7th in the list which aint too shabby either….


mat4 Says:

… it could be…

Sorry for the typos.


jalep Says:

@Felipe – Nice post @ 11 a.m.
As a fan of Nole my biggest wish is that he wins a FO. He may have to wait until Rafa is old and falters but I believe Nole will win it.

As for weeks at number he has a good shot at 170 this year and he likes being # 1 like Federer does. Time is still on Nole’s side so very realistic for Nole to pass a couple other big names.


Hippy Chick Says:

Djokovic is already an all time great,but theres no need to pull Rafa apart to make him look better,Rafa is still ahead in Masters and GS,has the career GS,however im just wondering if Novak were to surpass Rafa and win 15 GS,and 28 Masters titles,would he also be pulled to bits and regarded as the failure that everybody seems to think Rafa is?jeez….


mat4 Says:

@Alison:

I would be extremely happy if Novak was to be pulled apart for winning 15 slams… Better to be a failure with 15 than a success story with 8…


brando Says:

@Mat4: absolutely legendary post! Alison-for some unknown reason- fails to understand the privilege of Rafael being pulled apart. It’s just bizarre to me how often I see her seeking approval for Rafael when he hardly needs it. It’s bizarre. Put simply: losers NEVER get hated. Winners though attract it all the time. Mayweather, James, ronaldo even messi have their detractors. Part of the territory. Great post though: I’d love to be a failure with 15 slams also. Any and every time would I take such gross failure. Lmfao.


Hippy Chick Says:

Mat4/Brando lol i will take what your both saying on board….


Hippy Chick Says:

Been hated is a privalege lol….


brando Says:

@Alison: no offense Alison but seriously: rafa needs ZERO defending. Period. I said it the other day: rafa, fed and pete are the last 3 players in tennis history who need defending or pitying. Relax and enjoy the hate.


Markus Says:

Hippy Chick, just remember, you only tear apart that which is already formed, and you can only pull down one who is sits on top. Another thing that some people fail to see, there’s always room at the top. You just have to find your own way to get there. Djokovic knows the way and he’ll get there.


Markus Says:

Hippy Chick, just remember, you only tear apart that which is already formed, and you can only pull down one who is sits on top. Another thing that some people fail to see, there’s always room at the top. You just have to find your own way to get there. Djokovic knows the way and he’ll get there.


Hippy Chick Says:

Fantastic posts by Markus….


Markus Says:

grammatical error above! Hahaha! Hi, Okiegal!!! :-)


Hippy Chick Says:

New York,New York so good they named it twice,as in your double posts Marcus,i love your posts ;)….


Daniel Says:

Yes Markus, IF

But wasn’t we iffing when Fed was before 10 Slams, when Nadal didn’t win US Open and so on. If to speculate possiiblities of the future is part of the fun.

We can look what happen in the past, what is happen in the present and esrumate the future. Seema all people who doesn’t like to If are the ones who doesn’t aplly or work with modeling scenarios, forecasting, or don’t have the math verve.

I know what count in sport is the results, past and present but when we have 2 players already all time greats and now a third one who by the end of this year could get himself away fron the second tier top greats (Lendl, Connors, Mac, Agassi) as Felipe said it is valid. We may never have so much tennis history at stake every single week since the last 8 years as it’s been the case. The Big 3 are all playing gor history at this point and achieving their unique status.

Fed playing for longevity records now and possibly extens his main record (total Slams).

Nadal chasing Fed Slam records or extend his Masters total to possobly be leader in both. He knows #1 is not realistic now and a few tourneys seems is not meant to be for him. Plus a 10th Garros and his clau recorda will never be surpassed or replicate. That is the ultimate tennis certainty.
Djoko now chasing Nadal and Fed and having a complete hold of all titles (1 Slam away where he is second fave) and 1 Masters (Cincy) he has all chances to attain.

This are remarkable times and every year and tourney we have this 3 going to unprecendet achievements.

In 5 years time we may have to content with the most erratic generation and non consistency at all from top players. It’s going to be March Madness all year. But it can be fun for a whike. After so much history on the making this last years and the few next to come, getting a totally unpreductable tennis era can be fun even without the same weight as now.


Markus Says:

Thanks Hippy Chick. That’s what happens when your favorite is a big letdown. These top 3 (or 4) guys, who I always cheered against my favorite, beat him so much (as in almost all the time) that, from a position that started with disdain, I increasingly started to really admire them. :-)


DC Says:

Nole, with the lead he has, and the form he is in , will in all likelihood cross 170 this year.

If he wins another 6 GS and remains no 1 for another 100 weeks, we could call him greater than Nadal – thats a long way to go. Time will tell.


Markus Says:

@ Daniel: “… If to speculate possibilities of the future is part of the fun…”

I agree with that unequivocally because the speculating part, just like daydreams, is fun. But the use of “ifs” in an argument to establish one’s superiority over another, is anecdotal and presumptive and thus, invalid and unacceptable.


Hippy Chick Says:

Markus exactly,fun to speculate and the whole point of having a forum,but shouldnt be used as a catalist to pull other all time greats achivements to pieces….
DC exactly….


Nirmal Kumar Says:

Nadal will never have a balanced career because he is so overwhelming exceptional on clay

I’m not sure how balanced Novak is though. Outside clay Nadal has 5(or 6), wheras Novak outside HC he has only 3 GS.

So Novak’s record is still highly skewed towards HC just like Nadal’s is skewed towards Clay.

Roger is the only guy who seems to have more balanced compared to others.


Nirmal Kumar Says:

Based on the above arguments, looks like many people have concluded that Nadal’s career is over. No one seems to think he can comeback and get the No 1.

Really strange. I think he will.


Hippy Chick Says:

Nirmal i thought Novak had two GS away from HCs,but i see what your saying,its the exact same conversation we had the other day….


Hippy Chick Says:

Not sure Rafa will regain the number 1 ranking at any point,but as long as he wins another GS i will be delighted,not that 14 isnt already amazing,however we will see….


mat4 Says:

It seems that most of you don’t understand the nature of the Rafa-Nole rivalry, its reach, and its consequences. Their mutual place in history will be decided not by numbers, but on the court itself, because it is not mere tennis, it is a total war, where there can be only one… (pure poetry from my part).

First, this rivalry is the most productive in the Open era. But since Novak matured, we have two players playing at about the same level, with the same goals, and pitted one against the other: the unstoppable force against he unmovable object. The hidden result of this terrible confrontation are not the loses, but other loses caused the ones they inflicted each other. The mental and physical breakdown they both felt for a time.

We see that Murray, even Federer, are not able to sustain the nervous strain in big matches against Novak and Rafa. But neither Rafa nor Novak could sustain the stress caused by their rivalry without deep injuries. In Rafa’s case, the way it shows are injuries. He retired from the Tour for months. In Novak’s case, it was the sudden inability to win big finals.

I believe that they both have at least 2 to 3 GS less because of that cruel, unseen war of attrition. And the worst thing is that such war continues. RG is the next stop. It could decide the careers of both players.

If they only could make a deal, kind of: you let me win RG in four easy sets, I’ll let you win the AO in four easy sets…


mat4 Says:

“I believe that they both have at least 2 to 3 GS less because of that cruel, unseen war of attrition.”

Here I mean not about their mutual duels, but other potential slams.


Nirmal Kumar Says:

Nirmal i thought Novak had two GS away from HCs

HC, you are right. I believe he has 2 Wimby. Apart from Roger, i’m quite bad at other’s records.


Hippy Chick Says:

Mat4 deal another AO for Rafa and a first FO for Novak would suit me down to the ground,unfortunatly life is not like that,they will probably end up killing each other by the end of their respective careers….


jalep Says:

I wouldn’t count Rafa out to be # 1 again. But if he wins FO this year and stomps clay season that gets him 5500 points. Nole would need a bad clay season and summer. And there is reason to think Rafa won’t be as strong a year end finisher as Nole. It’s potentially good fight ahead for sure!


Hippy Chick Says:

JMO And i can here the sniggering from hear,and posters saying surely you cannot be serious Hippy Chick?but i actually believe an extra week after the FO and going back and playing Queens again which is similar to Wimbledon might actually benefit Rafa this year,and he might get that might go deep at W this year,after all he says hes motivated to put to bed the disaster of 2013/13 and to a lesser extent last year, i know i know dream on Hippy Chick and prepared to have egg left all over my face,still what are you all gonna do about it,its not like any off you will ever meet me face to face?….


Hippy Chick Says:

Sorry 2012/13….


brando Says:

@Alison: post your address and I’ll drive down and throw those eggs. What do you fancy: duck, cage free or aracauna egg? P


jalep Says:

It’s a good fight for #1 in Atp Hippy Chicken which makes the accomplishment sweeter


Hippy Chick Says:

Brando lol, but just a hunch,as he always did well at W after playing at Queens ;)….


jalep Says:

Hippy Chick! Sorry Damm auto correct.


Hippy Chick Says:

Jalep not Chicken but Chick,if(that word again)Rafa gets it great,but not something he or i are fixated on these days sorry….


chris ford1 Says:

Djokovic is now behind Fed by 22 vs. 23 Masters, and Nadal at 27. He should pass Fed this year, then be in a chase with Nadal for the most in the Open Era. He could pass McEnroe’s 170 weeks as #1 to secure 5th most weeks at #1 in the Open Era. He went over Laver and Becker to 11th place in most career titles in the Open Era so far.
These are not small things.


jalep Says:

How do you know for sure he’s not interested in #1? Surely you don’t believe he is done chasing GS titles. And winning like that naturally puts him in contention for year end #1.


mat4 Says:

@Alison:

“they will probably end up killing each other by the end of their respective careers…”

That’s precisely what I am afraid of.


Ben Pronin Says:

If we’re gonna nitpick everyone why not admit that Federer’s resume isn’t that balanced either? Only 10 titles on clay out of 24 finals? There are way more tournaments played on clay than grass courts but Federer’s results are more skewed towards grass here. But most of Federer’s success has also come on hard courts.

This is funny stuff. When Nadal starting winning a lot, there was a lot of hate directed at him from Federer’s fans. Now both fanbases can’t hate Djokovic enough. Are we going to hold them to the same standards or not?

Djokovic can be compared to Fedal. He’s not in their tier career-wise because he doesn’t have as many slams. And I’ll reiterate that he’s borderline top 10 all time whereas Fedal are undoubtably top 3 or 5. That’s why you compare. But Djokovic does match them in a lot of other results. Nadal has had a lot of success at IW and Federer has also had succes in IW and Miami. Are we going to say they can’t be compared to Djokovic at these two events because he’s been even better than them?

The more time you waste pretending your favorite’s rivals are somehow horrible, the more you undermine your favorite. Djokovic isn’t that good? Ok. A lot of Nadal’s biggest titles have come at Djokovic’s expense. If Djokovic is overrated, then so is Nadal. Same goes for Federer. Federer padded his stats and Djokovic is playing against a weak field. So what makes Nadal so good for beating these guys? Sounds like he’s just been beating chumps his whole career.


Hippy Chick Says:

I didnt say he wasnt chasing GS,of course he is,and it goes without saying that he is,he actually says that number 1 isnt his top prority thats all…


courbon Says:

Great post Ben


Felipe Says:

Djokovic, like Federer, LOVES to be the world number 1, and loves to set goals and play for the history books. He has declared that this year he is feeling stronger than ever and that he has to take his chances, considering that his chiefs rivals are not “100%”. He will give his all to win more slams, master 1000, WTF and be the best tennis player of the world for as long as possible. He has the skills, body, mind and determination. Its up to the Nadals, Federers, Murrays and the so called “young guns” (not so young anymore) to challenge the undesputed world number 1 (im not counting the Ferrers / Tsongas /Berdychs).
This era is far more interestings that Federers (prime), beacause basically we were expecting Nadal to challenge Federer back then (2006-2008), but now he have a lot of potencially dangerous and accomplished players that can play spoiler.


Hippy Chick Says:

Ben i dont think anyone was actually pulling Novak apart,i always maintain what an amazing player he is and what an amazing run he continues to go on,the only thing i dont care for is posters using him as a catalist to bring the other two down,so i think the nitpicking is more the other way around….


courbon Says:

This is funny from SI site about Novak:
“He’s the second best clay player on tour, which in the Rafael Nadal era is like saying he’s the second smartest guy behind Albert Einstein. “


Ben Pronin Says:

No, it goes in all 3 directions. And since Novak’s been on a mini tear the last few months, he’s been attacked and picked a part the most.


Brando Says:

LMFAO:

It’s crazy how nuts people go on here over the fedal, Novak thing after virtually every end of a leg in the tennis season. I’ll be very honest: I LOVE some of the madness you guys provide. It’s epic amusement!

I see it like this believing the facts and reality is as such at this moment in time:

1. Novak Djokovic is a all time great: this just is not up for debate. It’s a fact. Where does he rank among them? Who cares. Fact is he is among them. Period.

2. Novak Djokovic is a equal contemporary of Fedal: When they all retire Novak will be seen in the same equation as Fedal. Now does that mean as good, great, on the same level? Right now NO, since that’s a overall career related thing. We all know the deal on that front is.

But what I mean as a equal contemporary is that when people look at the time period in Tennis history circa 2003 till when it ends with these guys they’ll say: Federer, Nadal and Novak were the 3 who dominated, performed amazingly during that period of time.

An equal contemporary. And this isn’t up for debate since when you listen to Federer or Rafa talk of this era they ALWAYS band Novak with them. Even Andy too on occasion.

4. The all time, career thing is as clear as the sky without debate:

Federer > Nadal > Djokovic.

IF, but, asterisks, maybe, my crystal ball tells me, whatever else: that is how it is right now. Period.

You ask the pros- current and former- noted commentators of the game, heck: the players in question, and they will all unanimously agree on that order.

It ain’t even a debate to be honest. And people should respect it and give the due to where it’s warranted.


Brando Says:

@Courbon:

LMFAO, brilliant find!


Ben Pronin Says:

Do we call Federer the second best clay courter of all time for losing 4 French Open finals to Nadal?


Humble Rafa Says:

Do we call Federer the second best clay courter of all time for losing 4 French Open finals to Nadal?

In this forum, no. Gods are always the best and are second to no one.


chris ford1 Says:

“This is funny from SI site about Novak:
“He’s the second best clay player on tour, which in the Rafael Nadal era is like saying he’s the second smartest guy behind Albert Einstein.”

Obviously the sports writer never heard of John von Neumann, Enstein’s contemporary.
Once thought to be 2nd to Einstein, now conceded to be equal in accomplishment and impact. And likely exceeding Einstein in power of intellect. In the opinion of Einstein and others.

Many geniuses. Who is to say who is the GOAT of the mind across so many fields, with so many different talents and personalities involved? Newton. Shakespeare. Michelangelo. Napoleon. Jimi Hendrix. And we say this in a modern, powered world where the contributions of Nicola Tesla had more of an impact on each person’s life than all the contributions of Einstein or von Neumann.


Saiful Bari Says:

Good for tennis.
Hope Rafa will come back in form soon.
Actually Rafa is down mentally now. Now he is afarid to loosing the game. Confidence is very important. Every player faces this problem in their careers.
Want to see some good tennis
Vamos Rafa.
Good luck for Rafa.


Markus Says:

Well said, Brando. I like the uppercase “NO” on the question as to whether Djokovic is at the same level of Federer and Nadal. I’m waiting to see how many people will take umbrage to that by interpreting it out of context.


madmax Says:

Ben Pronin Says:
Do we call Federer the second best clay courter of all time for losing 4 French Open finals to Nadal?

April 6th, 2015 at 3:01 pm

That’s what Martina Navratilova says Ben!

I mean it is an interesting proposition.

Consider Murray having reached so many finals against Novak, and those that knock him for having reached the final and lost.

Rather get to the final and have a chance of winning the trophy, than get knocked out and be told that you aren’t up to the grade.

Federer reached 5 finals at RG and won one of them. That is a great stat to have.

Haters gonna hate Ben.


Markus Says:

Oh, chris ford1, what a way to ruin a perfectly put joke!


Ben Pronin Says:

Tennis isn’t nearly as bad as the NFL in this regard. The players do get credit for reaching semis and finals. But those results don’t count when determining their greatness.

Could be worse, could be regarded as some kind of horrible failure for losing a freaking Super Bowl.


chris ford1 Says:

Pronin – “Do we call Federer the second best clay courter of all time for losing 4 French Open finals to Nadal?”

No, Roger does not make the top 10 in clay court winning percent like Djokovic and Nadal do.
And more importantly, as Uncle Toni said in 2013, the only player that deeply worries Rafa and himself on clay is Djokovic.

Always worth bearing in mind that Fed turned pro in 1998, Rafa in 2002, and Djokovic in 2004 (with a year of tennis development lost due to tight family expenses and lack of sponsors in hardscrabble Serbia).
The 3 are out of phase, so to speak. And each faced a different level of intensity of competition when they started playing top tennis. And each will finish their prime years at different times and likely have different longevity pans.

And trophies only tell part of the tale. Nadal’s story of clay dominance is bigger than just the trophy count. It is how year in and out he always delivered. How he got to a positive H2H over every other player in the top 30.
If the tale of Djokovic was confined to one sentence, it would be:
“Once he hit full form at 23, the gifted Serb worked hard and overcame TWO acknowledged all-time Greats still in their primes, and became the best player.


KatH Says:

Unless Nole gets a massive injury he will be no. 1 at the end of 2015. This is based on Fed’s inability to win a 5-setter and Nadal’s inability to return in time to enforce his credentials.

Comparing what was and even what is will not change the end result. Whoever is capable of doing what to whom is academic. Nole is so far ahead, is so confident, that it would take the earth to move on its axis for any other outcome. (While I like Nole, he isn’t necessarily my first
favourite – hence this view is offered on a purely realistic basis).


Hippy Chick Says:

Ben a couple of years ago Rafa came back from injury and had an amazing year,yet granted it wasnt on par with Noles in 2011,and yet people called it overated,and the naysayers said he only did so well because Novak wasnt at his best,god forbid we gave Rafa any credit for that year,so i suppose we can all be a bit nitpicky at times….


skeezer Says:

Ben,
Whilst I agree the making a ton of semis and finals alone is not a great feat in itself, when you do have plenty of Slams also then, collectively yes it does. It shows your consistency at the very top level of Tennis over a era or career. And yes, it can matter big time. The semis and finals thingy has been noted and praised plenty of times by the commies about Fed. Some say that feat will never be broken.


chris ford1 Says:

HC – In 2013, Nadal got 13,000 some points. Nole 12,000 some, the difference was a net touch and one guy leaving the FO duel with a ton of confidence. The next closest player that year was Ferrer with 5800 points. People talk how close it was with the two players that had a brilliant year and lapped the field in number of points.

Keezer – Making a slew of semis is a great feat. Almost always being in the 4 best when the dust settles. Add the streaks of consecutive QFs and semis the likes of Connors, Lendl, Fed and Nole have done is eye-popping stuff.


mat4 Says:

CF 1:

Once, when been asked how it is to be a genius, Einstein answered: “I don’t know. Ask Nikola Tesla.”

In fact, Tesla is the greatest genius of the XX century, and the one who has left the greatest impact. Unfortunately, his ideas about free energy led to the destruction of most of his work. Anyway, he left us a lot of things, from electricity to the radio.


Chris Says:

my prediction: at the end of his career Djokovic will have surpassed Nadal in all relevant categories except Grand Slams.

Unfortunately, Grand Slams are the only thing people care about, so they will still rank Nadal above Djokovic then.


chris ford1 Says:

Markus – I just get riled up some as one of my degrees is in history, on just how poorly educated Americans are in history. And how the media plays up that ignorance. There are many as impactful as the single one that the mass media touts as The Genius. The joke is intended as an analogy that all others are mental pygmies compared to Einstein. And that is not true. Sadly, the bulk of Americans don’t even know who Tesla was, and of those that do, half think he was just a mad scientist. And even less know who John von Neumann was.
With Nadal, others have been close to beating him at RG, beaten him on other clay venues – and while Nadal has dominated, Federer+Ferrer+Djokovic are great clay players. And before then, there was Thomas Muster. And Borg, who has one of those impossible records. Win the slowest (RG) and the fastest(Wimbledon) 6 and 5 times respectively. 3 straight years winning both. (One year 1977 barred from the FO due to his contract) Don’t bother even going to Australia except one year as it was a long ways away, low prize money, and not thought of as a bona fide Slam in Bjorn’s day. It was on grass. Had he showed, he was after all the best grass court player of his day….You do the math.


peter Says:

nole will fiNish with 12~15 slams. he wont get past federer in slams, but has good chance in becoming the first player ever to have 7 year end no.1s. just look at the up and coming players and you will notice none of them are in his class, and it will take a few more years for players like kygios and coric to play at a consistently high level throughout the year to challenge him. he is almost certain to surpass federer in years no.1, and that is already a great feat.

Slam count is just a number, if u look at percentage difference 14,15, 17 slams is not a big difference. While there is a huge gap between a non~slammer and a one slam wonder, there is not much gap in tennis ability between a 14 slammer and 17 slammer, similarly for a 6 slammer and a 8 slammer.


Michael Says:

And this is another feather in the cap for Novak and the icing on the cake is that he did it in a relatively short career as compared to Rafa. This man Novak is poised for greatness and glory in the years to come. I do not think he has any significant threat from the so called young guns to dislodge him from his preeminent status and neither does Fedal or Andy have it in them to beat him consistently. Andy will fancy his chances against him at Wimbledon and Rafa at the French but apart from that, Novak can be pretty assured of his superiority over the rest. If all goes well, he has it in him to win atleast 6-7 more majors at the least and about 10 more Master series tournaments and 2-3 World Tour finals taking him on par with the Giants of the Game.


Dc Says:

nole will be 28 next year.
his quality of play has already deteriorated on fast hard courts. In fact , the last couple of fast HC tournaments , he’s consistently lost to federe olderer. He was also knocked out by Nishikori at the U.S. open.

At this age, things keep getting tougher with every passing month. This year and maybe next year are probably his last two shots at the French open.


Giles Says:

All very well to say ” and the icing on the cake is that he did it in a relatively short time compared to Rafa…..”. Hmmmm
Really? As recently as 2012 Rafa was out of the tour for 222 days with injury. And then last year he had to contend with back, wrist and an operation. And what about the periods of inactivity in previous years due to injury? So, what do you mean by “a relatively short time compared to Rafa”??


Hippy Chick Says:

Michael i suppose thats it then is it?tell me is there any point in anybody else even playing tennis,i mean why not just give Novak everything LOL?

Firstly i dont hate Novak no matter what his fans seem to think,but im not about to right everybody else off either,as i believe Rafa has another level to reach,and Andy and Roger have games better suited to grass than Novak in spite of Novak winning W last year,and as crazy as it might sound an extra week between the FO and W,and playing Queens might help Rafas W preperation this year,add to that Rafas beaten Novak at the USO twice,Andy beat him,so did Nishikori,so its not exactly his most dominant GS….

No offence but saying he will win another 7 GS is pertinent,but not really relevant till it happens,i mean the guy will be 28 soon,how many players won 7 GS past that age,first time for everything i suppose?

I get your euphoria over Novaks amazing run and i except hes the player of the moment,never the less theres no need to belittle the other players and their respective achievements,anyway congrats to Novak on surpassing Rafa with weeks at number 1 he deserves it,141 weeks for Rafa aint too shabby,niether is 14 even if people do seem to think hes such a tennis failure….


Hippy Chick Says:

Sorry 14 GS last sentence….


mat4 Says:

CF 1:

BTW, did you know that the original manuscript of the theory of relativity was signed “Einstein-Marity”. Marity for Maric, Einstein first wife, Mileva Maric, another Serb… Einstein gave her the money of his Nobel Prize when they divorced. She was a brilliant mathematician. They had a son, if I remember well.


mat4 Says:

@Alison:

Be honest, for once, you just hate Novak.

I you do that, I’ll admit I hate Rafa.

;-)


madmax Says:

chris ford1 Says:
Pronin – “Do we call Federer the second best clay courter of all time for losing 4 French Open finals to Nadal?”

No, Roger does not make the top 10 in clay court winning percent like Djokovic and Nadal do.

Your Opinion CF1.

Roger reaches the final of a GS clay court tournament, MORE than any of the other players, and gets ZERO credit for having done so.

Murray reaches the finals of both GS and Masters tournaments and gets ZERO credit for having got there.

Argument is skewed.


mat4 Says:

@madmax:

Unfortunately, you’re right.

When I sum up the career of great players, I focus not only on victories in slams, but also on other factors: consistency, % of wins, wins against top tens, weeks at the top, versatility on all surfaces, their game itself, the competition, etc.

All three at the top have paid a heavy price because they played at the same time: imagine Fed born in 1979 and he would have three to five GS more. Take Novak out of the equation, and Rafa would have also 3 to 5 GS more, Fed too. Take Rafa out of the equation, and Novak would have 5 GS more. In many tennis eras we had two great champions dominating, never three.

Watching their game, their fighting spirit, the amount of insane amount of work they did, and we could easily ranked all three at the pinnacle of this sport.


mat4 Says:

Anyway, if anybody wants to see how Fed, Rafa and Nole are ranked in the history of the ATP, he just has to go to the wiki records page. Their names are everywhere.


mat4 Says:

Just a few stats from that page:

nb of slams, ranked: 1,2,5
nb of slam finals, ranked: 1,2,6
nb of slam semis: 1,5,6
nb of slam QF: 1,5,7
nb of wins in slams: 1,6,7

semifinals streaks: 1,2
QF streaks: 1,2

most titles at a slam: AO – Novak, FO – Rafa, WB,USO – Fed

I jump a bit, then,

nb of tournaments won: 3,5,10 (and, among those tournaments, if we only count majors — GS and masters — 1,2,3)

nb of masters: 1,2,3

nb of wins against top 10 opposition: 1,2,3

etc., etc.,


Hippy Chick Says:

Mat4 i wont be enticed into admiting something that isnt true,come on i know your joking but you still know me better than that,i dont even hate people in the real world lifes too short,a poster called Bad Knee Rules accused me of that just a year ago,and Giles said i sounded like a closet Novak fan because i have actually defended the guy on a number of occasions as you well know,so go figure?…. ;-)….


Hippy Chick Says:

Mat4 to add i made one comment regarding the Novak ball boy incident,as i think some posters have blown the whole thing out of proportion,he yelled at his box not the ball boy,he apologized afterwards to the ball boy whom only got caught in the cross fire,if i was such a hater surely i wouldve made alot more out it than there was?much ado about nothing IMO….


madmax Says:

Mat4, what is startling about Federer’s resume on clay which he isn’t really given note for:

(i) Last 10 years record at Roland Garros — 5 French Open finals (1 Title in 2009), 2 Semi-finals, 2 Quarter-finals.

(ii) 58 wins at Roland Garros (Jointly tied at #2 in most number of wins at French Open)

(iii) Till now, out of 242 matches played on clay, Roger Federer has won 187 and lost 55 and has a 79% success record on clay court.

(iv) Reached finals of 23 Clay Court tournaments, winning 10 out of those (with two wins vs Rafa Nadal on clay).


madmax Says:

People tend to under-value Federer’s accomplishments on clay.


Margot Says:

@mat4
I know you are joking cos ;) but please don’t even joke about “hating” tennis players. Let’s save our hatred for Stalin, Pol Pot, Amin, Edward 2nd, Blair etc etc.


mat4 Says:

@Margot, Alison:

Of course I was joking. Alison takes some topics too seriously.

About hate, in general: it is a feeling we should all avoid, even when we have to defend ourselves — and Lord knows we have to defend ourselves now, in this Orwellian world, against our own institution, our own banks, our own politicians.


madmax Says:

Watching their game, their fighting spirit, the amount of insane amount of work they did, and we could easily ranked all three at the pinnacle of this sport.

April 7th, 2015 at 6:35 am

Mat4? – not sure what you are trying to get at here. I was being serious about Federer, may you were not.
Anyway, I stand by what I say.


Hippy Chick Says:

Mat4 i am probably over sensitive i will say this there are only a couple of tennis players i dislike but not hate,i think Gulbis is a bit of a twerp that shoots too much from the mouth,the other is Cilic who is an amazing player and that USO win was some of the best tennis i ever saw him play,but i lost respect for him after what he did,and before Jack Lewis pounces on me its not the doping thing im refering to either….


Hippy Chick Says:

Margot that type of people i dont actually hate either,they are just beneath contempt….


mat4 Says:

@madmax:

I am quite serious too. And I don’t disagree with you. Just like I wrote, take out Rafa out of the equation, a man who has won 9 FO and is, by the numbers, the most dominant player on clay ever, and you probably have Fed and Novak dominating the event in that span. Their % of win at the FO would be probably third and fourth in the Open Era.


mat4 Says:

Then, there is another thing. While Rafa has better stats than Novak, more slams won, etc., from 2011 to 2014, when Rafa was 25 and Novak 24, when both were in their prime, Novak was the better player.

It is something we can directly compare, Novak has won more slams, more tournaments, has a positive H2H (12-7, 4-5 on clay, 8-2 on other surfaces), has more top ten wins, finished 3 times no 1, etc. and if he manages to finally win the FO, there will be no doubt that he was the better player of the two.

So, if Rafa is a top three player ever, what does it make of Novak? Rafa had overall a better career, but Novak consistently beat him when they were at their prime.


mat4 Says:

So, it is just more complicate that simply counting slams won.


Hippy Chick Says:

Mat4 IMO the sole reason why its so hard to determine who the GOAT is(without going down that road) as there are too many variables….


Hippy Chick Says:

To add more conjecture to that Novak has a positive H2H,so does Rafa over Roger,so on and on it goes….


Okiegal Says:

@mat4……I think you are shooting from the hip at post 5:16…..if you are honest, admit you hate Rafa…well, I won’t say hate, a strong word that I don’t like…..maybe you can’t stand him, would be more in order. I mean you can say that about Chick, who is a fair minded poster when in fact your feelings are the same towards Rafa, no secrets on here……..our true feelings always come shining through like the first peak of the sun at daybreak! I added that poetic flair just for you!! :)

We have our favs and that’s why they are “favs” because we don’t particularly like the others for some reason or other, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that all of those others aren’t amazing players with amazing records! We just like who we like and that’s it!! Chick has been called out before for being too nice concerning the “enemies” of the sport……Well, so have I, for that matter. I will agree with her, why try to downplay another amazing athlete just because you can’t stand him??

These comments about how many more grand slams a player will get is rather far fetched imo….no one really knows that….

@mat4……I’m smiling! :)


mat4 Says:

@Alison:

Right to the point, both posts.

But no one can deny that all three are great champions, playing in a very competitive era.


mat4 Says:

@Okie:

You’re pretty fresh here, so you can’t know the martyr I suffered defending Rafa against Dave…

No, in fact, I don’t “hate” Rafa. I even don’t dislike him. And about speculating about slams, etc., read my post at April 6th, 2015 at 12:05 pm.

But an answer to your question is my post at April 6th, 2015 at 1:39 pm. Those two players are going to destroy each other. And, as a Novak fan, it is something very stressful.


Markus Says:

@mat4:

I went back to your April 6 1:39 post to see what you were talking about. It was a dramatic post. A little bit over the top, but I won’t argue with it. It’s quite reasonable. Those two mutually destructive players: Nadal and Djokovic. It makes for a really dramatic French Open a la “Gladiator” (the movie). I hope they get to play against each other there. Or maybe not, for their own well-being.


mat4 Says:

@Markus:

It was a poetic post…

But when you rewatch the USO 2011 final, the AO 2012 final, the FO 2013 final… you can understand what I meant.


Margot Says:

As an Andy fan, I hope Rafa and Nole should be in one half of the draw, and Andy in t’other. All he has to do, lol, is reach and stay at 2 and pray :) Tho. I remember Nole having an epic AO semi with him, then going on to win an epic final against Rafa, so it might not be that advantageous. ;)


Markus Says:

@ mat4:

I know what you mean. I should not have said “over the top” but it was dramatic and quite appropriate when applied to the matches you mentioned, particularly the 2012 AO final. It was brutal. And as you mentioned took physical and psychological tolls on both: Djokovic never won another slam that year including the Olympics, and Nadal who briefly recovered by winning the French but was so saddled with injuries that he lost early at Wimbledon and withdrew from the US Open and the Olympics that same year.


Giles Says:

Maybe the joker fans should build a shrine for their man? As for mat4, reading his posts suggests to me that he may be on the verge of a breakdown.


Okiegal Says:

@mat4……Fresh, am I?? Lol. Love that term…..have been called that before…..in my youth! Yes, I know the difference in the use of the word in your comment. It’s all been covered before….opinions and what not. I don’t remember about you and Dave and Rafa. I’m sure I read it at the time, especially if it was in the last 3 years. I have defended Fed many times myself. The Novak discussions are just now getting hot and heavy atm, with comparisons and all. He is so good and he’s a part of the 3, no doubt. But, you know if he happened to attain an injury, it could be gone in the blink of an eye. Don’t anyone out thinking I’m hoping and wanting this, not so!! Just a thought mainly because what Rafa, DelPo and Andy have gone through…..plus Roger with the back ailment and there are many others. I guess Novak suffered during the early part of his career and got it behind him. They are great and have given us lots of joy and exciting matches!! Will be sad when it’s over. Don’t know if we will ever see anything like it again!! I JUST LOVE TENNIS!! :)


Okiegal Says:

The elusive FO was vacant in Fed’s resume for awhile and now it’s elusive in Novak’s. As a Rafa fan, I know this run will end at some point……maybe this year?? He will be very nervous and anxious when he hits the court for his first match there……but he’s more comfortable there too. I hope his confidence level will be better when the Frenchie rolls around, but might have a lot to do with how he does in the clay events before the slam. I have great expectations of him, but it’s all on him and his mindset…..we will see. Novak is riding high atm and the FO draws will be very interesting!!


Dc Says:

Nole and Rafa are lucky in the sense that no one from the next feb has been good enough to play solid tennis. When Hewitt was at his peak , there came Fed.When fed was at his peak , there was Rafa . When Rafa was at his peak , along came nolly. However there isn’t any younger gun coming to challenge Nole.
One could argue that the big 3 have crushed the souls of anyone who dared to have the guts to challenge them. But whatever it is, the next 2 years are really a good opportunity for Nole. Then age will catch up with him and along will come some fresher guns to take over.

Nole will probably end with 5 years at no 1 and 12 slams. Lesser slams than nadal but more years and weeks at no 1 .


mat4 Says:

@Okie:

“But, you know if he happened to attain an injury, it could be gone in the blink of an eye.”

I guess that you didn’t read the post I first mentioned. I’ll quote it below again:

“[...] I believe that I could be Novak’s last real great season. What he achieves this year, it will be it, most probably. [...]

Will he win double digit slams? Not certain. But 8 is a decent number. 30 MS? I honestly think that it is out of reach. If he wins 25, I would be very happy. 200 weeks at no 1? It is possible, but to surpass JMac would already be a success. The career slams? It is possible too, but it is a difficult task. If he manages to beat Rafa at RG, it would make of him an all time great by itself. 5 WTF? 4 is already great.

Everything he wins now is a bonus. [...]

So, we can only wait and see, and enjoy while they play decently. For me, Novak doesn’t have to be in tennis history books. And it doesn’t matter if he is ranked third, fourth, or no 10. I’ll enjoy while he plays, and hope he will play many years more.”


Markus Says:

@Dc:

I agree with your assessment on how long the top guys can stay on top. There isn’t anybody in sight who can challenge Novak. The upcoming set of players are really quite weak when compared with the current top 3 (or 4). Murray is a barrier they must first overcome just so they can get to the top 3. Murray has been playing well recently to maintain his hold on that position. Nadal is 5th now but who takes that seriously? He is still a solid top 3 in spite of the numbers. And with clay coming up? Who can contest that? In a way, I feel sorry for this upcoming set of players. They came at at an unfortunate time when the top 3 (or 4) are among the best in the history of the game.


Markus Says:

@mat4:

Are you underrating Djokovic or you are trying not to jinx him? He’s only 27 (well 28, next month) but he has taken good care of his body (diet, yoga, etc) that he has a good 2 to 3 years where he can maintain that level. Even a subpar Novak is better than most. A double digit slam count is within reach and this is a guy who sets his goals high and works hard at it. So far, he has been successful and I have no doubts he can really get to within touching distance with those 2 greats ahead of him. Like Federer, I think he will want to have his little son watch his dad compete. That’s a powerful incentive to remain good.


Okiegal Says:

@mat4…..I didn’t understand that comment…you said I I I could be the the last great season for Novak or the great last reason??


mat4 Says:

… season…

Usually, at 28, a steep decline starts.


SG1 Says:

Ben Pronin Says:
Do we call Federer the second best clay courter of all time for losing 4 French Open finals to Nadal?

————————

I don’t think so. I remember a similar debate in regards to people who fought Mike Tyson in his prime. “He lost to Tyson but he went the distance.” To steal a Brando quote, “Who cares?”.

Pro sport is ultimately about winning. Calling Federer the 2nd best clay courter of all time when he doesn’t even have the same number of finals played as Borg (…let alone Borg’s 6 FO’s to Fed’s 1 FO) seems like flawed logic…which I think was your point. You don’t build a reputation by losing fights or tennis matches.


Margot Says:

Lol mat4, TMH is No 2. Not too dusty. Do you just mean slam wise? Or are you saying he’s a one off?


SG1 Says:

I do think it’s fair to say that Roger is the 2nd best player of his generation on clay…obviously. In a lot of ways, this makes him an all time great player on the surface. Definitely top 10. But he’s not ahead of Borg or Kuerten in my books. Not on red dirt.


Okiegal Says:

@mat4…..just teasing you…..I knew you meant “It could be the last great season and not I could be”…..you just had a typo…..like I do quite often, I’m afraid! It’s all good, mat4, I like Rafa best and appreciate and respect all the other greats…..that’s the way I roll!!


SG1 Says:

I’ve always thought that Novak has it in him to be one of the best ever. But, the late 2000′s was a frustrating period in which to watch Novak. He’d run out of gas or gag in big matches. Even his somewhat recent run of big finals lost makes at least me question his place among the big three at times. I do think he belongs there but when Federer was at his best and Nadal was healthy, their winning was almost a foregone conclusion. With Novak, it’s not that cut and dry.

Novak can look so brilliant in one match and then go through these dips in subsequent matches that make me scratch my head about him.


SG1 Says:

I think Novak, like Lendl, is a victim of the generation he plays in. He’s had to play through Federer, Nadal and Murray at or near the peak of their powers and this has impacted his career. No fault of his own. Prime Roger had a perfect game to play Novak (…though I think he should have attacked a little more). Prime Rafa takes a back seat no one. Murray, on any given day, could beat any of the top three (even if he can’t do it right now).


Markus Says:

@Margot: based on your recent post from another thread. Don’t let him reel you in. Nobody pays attention to him anymore. He used to be funny but now he has become just a soiled rag.


Margot Says:

@Markus
Very sound advice and I will take it! :) Makes me mad tho.!


django Says:

I expect novak to take at least one more slam this year and two masters. This is the very least he will win.
He needs to skip Madrid and just concentrate on MC and Rome. Skip grass tune ups. Let’s see what Boris says about that.


RJ Says:

Federer is definitely a top 10 clay courter in the open era – after Nadal, Borg, Lendl, Guga (in that order) – I can’t think of too many clay courters who have an overall better record (5 french finals, one title, several clay masters, plus he lost all those french finals to Nadal – had he faced Guga or even Lendl, he would have won a couple more – or anyone else like Ferrer, who is Fed’s pigeon even on clay). So may be top 5 (5th)?

On Grass Fed definitely has No. 1 credentials – 9 finals, 7 titles, two close finals lost at the business end of 5th sets to great players.

On Hard courts, one could make the case that Fed is No. 1 – 9 hard court slams, and numerous other accomplishments (including 6 YEC titles).

So No 1 on grass, ever. No 1 on hard, ever. No 5 on clay, ever. Not bad. Strong case for overall No. 1 ever. Since Borg never won a hard court slam, Sampras didn’t even come close to that on clay, Nadal is not a top 5 in either grass or hard- top 10 on grass, perhaps top 10 on hard courts, No 1 on clay. that doesn’t make him No. 1 ever.


mat4 Says:

@Okiegal:

I corrected that spelling error in the following post, at 12:24, but when I copied/pasted, I forgot about it. I didn’t even notice it in your post… So, I missed somehow the teasing.

@Margot:

I am sorry, but you forgot that English is not my first language, and I honestly didn’t understand what you wrote. Who is TMH? OK, I understood “not too dusty”, but what “Or are you saying he’s a one off?” means? I tried Gtranslate, but it gave nothing meaningful.

My intentions, in various posts in this thread, were

1. not to exaggerate Novak’s prospects;

2. to show how this generation of great players is exceptional not only by the numbers of slams won, but in other, also relevant categories;

3. to show that counting slams is not the only way to assess the quality of a player, and that equating “career” and “quality” could be wrong.

I also wrote a post about the Novak-Rafa rivalry, and the heavy toll it takes on both players.

BTW, I feel honoured that Giles reads my posts, and touched by the fact he seems worrying about my health.


jane Says:

^ agree about madrid django. hope you’re right about the rest!


RJ Says:

Wilander perhaps is No. 5 on clay, making Fed no 6? Though I can’t see Wilander beating Fed even on clay, if both were playing each other in their prime


mat4 Says:

Hi jane. Glad you’re here.


Markus Says:

As regards clay, those guys mentioned, particularly Borg, Lendl, Wilander and Kuerten are all great clay courters. Nadal just happened to be singularly supreme on clay that he makes everybody else look almost mediocre. If I remember correctly, Guga beat Federer in the semifinals at Roland Garros that first time Nadal won it. Nadal was very young then and Roger may have had a better chance then. But I don’t want to invoke the “if” word.


Markus Says:

About Federer being the “second best” on clay. That should not even be brought up considering he only won it once while many others have won it multiple times. Let’s just say Roger was also very good on clay. He won it once, remember? That counts more than all those times he came up second to Nadal.


jalep Says:

@RJ.

From the source of the cc ranking list, where is Nole ranked? Thanks.

I ask because I’ve seen him ranked as low as 12th.


Muhammad Says:

About the top players starting to decline after 28, I don’t think the statistics and historical performance so far are of much use.
The sport is much more serious now, these guys train harder, live healthier, they are well programmed machines. No wonder that Roger is so great at 33 and I wouldn’t be surprised to see others being very good at that age too. There might be problems with injuries etc, but not a decline due to age or luck of passion/motivation for the sport.


Okiegal Says:

@mat4…..I’m impressed, old chap, you can copy and paste!! Lol. I’m computer illiterate, sorry to say. But was kidding around with you. In ALL of your seriousness, you do seem to have a sense of humor at times, so I felt free to tease a bit. :) BTW I’m not worried you’re going to have a breakdown……and I will keep reading you!! :) Have a great evening!

PS I’m gonna learn to copy and paste!! Lol


Markus Says:

Corollary to what Muhammad said, if these players keep up with the technology, they can prolong their shelf life in the sport. Do you think Federer would be where he is now if he did not change his racquet?


Okiegal Says:

No question, Borg the second best on clay…..then who??? We all know Rafa is better than anyone on the red dirt, but who’s the better between Novak and Roger? Any opinions out there with stats to prove it?? I haven’t scrolled up too far, hope this hasn’t been covered, if so I apologize!


Markus Says:

Okiegal, hopefully we’ll find out in the coming French. Federer cannot grind out a 5-set tournament on clay anymore (only my opinion, don’t get riled up fans). But if Djokovic plays Nadal and beats him, them we will know the answer.


Daniel Says:

mat4,

Novak can reach 25 Masters this year alone, don’t know how you think he will inly win 3 more in his enture career.
If he wins one of the clays he jumps to 23 and I can’t see him not winning one of the last 4, specially how good he has been the last 3 years during fall. So he can safelly win 4 again this year to end with 24 or even more.

We know better in 2 months once RG starts and the season gets close to finishing first half. But seeing how he is domingaing major tournaments and his recent record in Masters finals, 10 out of 10. Can’t ber agaisnt him. Next year indeed ir could be another story as you point out but with this start anything less than 4 Masters and 2 Slams for this year would be a wasted opportunity for him. This is the year he is due to deliver and he knwos it.


Emily Says:

Markus, one of my most distinct memories is when Rafa beat Federer in the semis the 1st year he won RG. Guga didn’t even play that year. I had seen Nadal beat Roddick in the Davis Cup, but I was so shocked at how easy he was making it look beating the best player in the world. I only mention this correction b/c it’s the main reason I have such respect for how he won his first grand slam title.


jalep Says:

Federer needed to keep up with racquet technology sooner than he did. He was slow to make the change.


Margot Says:

Apologies mat4. I meant Fed, at 33, is doing very well, so is there not hope for other players, especially Nole with his special physique, to continue winning into their thirties? Or are you saying Fed is unique?
As in, when they made him they broke the mold, therefore you get one only.


Markus Says:

Thank you for and I truly welcome that correction, Emily. So really, Federer never had a chance against Rafa on clay, particularly at the French.


Markus Says:

@jalep: I was almost tempted to use “if”.


Margot Says:

And mat4, TMF=The Mighty Fed.


jalep Says:

If Rafa’s top 2 rivals on clay are only ranked 6 & 12, Ferrer is thereabouts somewhere too, it does appear he(Rafa) was lucky not to have played against the best on clay.


jalep Says:

Why so sensitive about the use of ‘if’ @ Markus?

Is speculation not allowed on Tennis-x?


mat4 Says:

@Margot:

OK, I got it, but you wrote TMH, not TMF, so I wasn’t sure about that. To answer your question: when I see the way Ferrer plays at 33, I hope that Novak will continue to play well. But, in 2010, when Fed won the AO, everybody thought he would win at least 20 slams… I won just one after that, although playing great very often. So, I guess it is better to be humble ;-) and not to expect too much.

@Okie:

I didn’t notice the I, instead of it, but you wrote reason instead of season, so my answer was utterly stupid. I have, btw, a very dry sense of humour, and I joke most of the time. I am a big fan of OFAH, btw, where my favourite character is Trigg.

Just for you:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xVwyij-0sOw


chris ford1 Says:

Reflections on clay:

1. Borg’s name comes up as among the best ever clay court players, as it should. Let’s add in his prime he was the best grass player as well. Now think about how inadequate “Slam Count” is to fit Borg in the Pantheon of greats.
He retired at 26 with 11 Slams. He was the earler version of Fed in terms of popularity, but more of a sex symbol. Guys wanted to be him, women fantasized about him.
His charisma probably had more to do with fitting the promotion of the pro game into making tennis a significant global sport in the 70s than Laver, Connors, certainly the Sainted Billy Jean of the media gays..
11 Slams.
Consider that back then, the Australian Open, played on grass, was not considered a bona fide Slam. Borg showed up once early in his career, decided the event was not worth the hassle and had less prize money than many other events.(5X less)

Borg missed 7! 7! AOs in his prime as the premiere grass player in tennis. He also missed one French Open (1977) in the middle of his prime because he was barred in a contractural dispute.

Borg.


Okiegal Says:

@mat4…..It’s all good, I was trying to be funny. Loved your link. Not familiar with this one. Used to watch “Are You Being Served” and “Keeping Up Appearances”……Yes, the Brits produce some great comedy! I had not a clue what OFAH meant, thanks for backing it up. PBS might show it sometime. The craze right now is “Downton Abbey”. People are nuts about this series.


Markus Says:

@jalep: re: “if”

My aversion to “if” is just my own idiosyncrasy as I believe it serves no purpose when discussing past events because in that context, “ifs” never happened. As for its use in speculating on what is yet to come, “ifs” do make it more fun. In no way am I imposing on anyone as regards its use it in any manner he wants.


chris ford1 Says:

Jalep – “If Rafa’s top 2 rivals on clay are only ranked 6 & 12, Ferrer is thereabouts somewhere too, it does appear he(Rafa) was lucky not to have played against the best on clay”

Dear Jalep, competition impacts rankings on clay. Fed and Nole have stats lessened just because of Rafa, and each other..
Also, both Federer and Djokovic are true all court players who adjusted their play for the surfaces. Nadal is a clay player who took his clay game to other now slowed down courts and with his athleticism and unrelenting fight, became a force.

Early on, the contests between Fed and Rafa were close. In 2009, after Nole and Rafa’s mutual destruction at Madrid, Fed beat the hobbled and exhausted Rafa. And the knee injury from the epic match in Madrid flared up again after Rome, and with his parents separation and fine play from Soderling, Fed had the FO finally in his grasp and Delpo almost took it.
But Fed, honestly, though he was the 2nd best clay court player before Djokovic, never really worried Rafa. Or Uncle Toni. They had the formula. High bounce bombs on slow clay to Fed’s vulnerable one-hand backhand until Fed broke down. By 2008, Rafa mentally owned Fed on clay.
But Djokovic has concerned Rafa and Uncle Toni since 2009. Deeply. They solved Federer. They can’t solve Djokovic. Rafa is still obviously the better player on clay. But Djokovic has been good enough to beat Rafa 4 times at 1000 events, and seriously threaten him at the French Open.


Hippy Chick Says:

Mat4 thanks for the link,its my favorite ever TV comedy series,i have the entire set on DVD boxsets,it timeless classic TV gold at its ver best,just love it….


Hippy Chick Says:

To add i think im the female equivalant of Trig,the ditzy Hippy Chick,or another Phoebe from Friends….


Hippy Chick Says:

I know people think Novak is the only player that can trouble Rafa on clay and they are indeed quite right,but i also think an inform Rafa if(and now im using the IF word lol,sorry Marcus) he gets back there is trouble for Novak on HCs,Rafa might not be unbeatable on clay courts,but Novak might not be unbeatable on HCs either,this rivalry has worked both ways,with both players going into each others teritories from time to time….


skeezer Says:

Know this is a praise Nole thread, and as well it should be, but found this little gem on Fed going around FB;
https://www.facebook.com/wearetennis/photos/a.195211863832571.43624.183097091710715/938274102859673/?type=1
And now back to our Nole thread;
He will end the year #1, book it.


jane Says:

skeezer, that’s such a sad-sack looking pete, lol.
do you mean fed or novak for year end number 1?


skeezer Says:

@jane,
Nole all the way. The stars are aligned this year imo. :-)


jalep Says:

My point is that on the recent lists of best clay court players EVER (not talking all court)… it goes…Rafa Borg…bla.bla.bla.bla.Federer…bla.bla.bla.blaaa. to 12th place for Nole. Can’t remember where Ferrer was, but those were the only 3 in Rafa’s generation. Looks like a lack of clay court elites around while Rafa is cleaning up for a decade on clay.

What was TMF. Getting. One Hamburg and one Madrid. A handful of FO.finals. Then, One Title while Rafa is off injured.

Nole has what. 3 masters wins over Rafa, a FO final.

Nole could yet turn out to be a true rival to Rafa (on clay) not that he isn’t on any other aspect of tennis. It actually benefits Rafa’s legacy to have Nole beat him!

Think about it. :D


mat4 Says:

Without matches played against Rafa and those played between themselves, Fed is at 87% of wins at RG (he played 16 RG!), and Novak is at 93%. It is about the third and fourth results at RG.

They well could be the third and fourth players on clay ever.

Now imagine Borg and Rafa playing at the same time. Where would be Borg? Or Rafa perhaps?

The things here we can say is that Fed is perhaps the most complete player of the Open Era, while Novak is without doubt the most complete baseliner of the Open Era. Not to acknowledge their exceptional quality on clay is denigrating Rafa too.


mat4 Says:

BTW, Novak beat Rafa four times on clay since 2011.

Instead of an impressionistic list, one could use this one:

French Open % * W–L
1. Rafael Nadal 98.51 66–1
2. Björn Borg 96.08 49–2
3. Mats Wilander 83.93 47–9
4. Gustavo Kuerten 81.82 36–8
5. Jim Courier 81.63 40–9
6. Ivan Lendl 81.54 53–12
7. Novak Djokovic 80.76 42–10
8. Roger Federer 80.26 61–15
9. Guillermo Vilas 77.33 58–17
10.Yannick Noah 76.92 40–12

We can see that Fed has 8 more wins than Lendl, who won three times and played the tournament 15 times, and more wins than Vilas too, although he played two RG less. Novak has two more wins than Courier, although JC won RG twice in 11 participations.

But RG is perhaps not good enough. So let’s see the overall winning %:

Clay % * W–L
1. Rafael Nadal 92.85 325–25
2. Björn Borg 85.95 251–41
3. Ivan Lendl 81.44 329–75
4. Guillermo Vilas 80.19 660–163
5. Novak Djokovic 78.26 144–40
6. Jimmy Connors 77.52 200–58
7. José Luis Clerc 77.38 301–88
8. Thomas Muster 76.86 422–127
9. Mats Wilander 76.74 264–80
10.Roger Federer 76.15 198–62

But here, there is a distorting fact: Djokovic and Federer mainly play only MS1000 on clay. So, let’s check this stats — number of titles in masters (or equivalent) on clay:

Clay #
1. Rafael Nadal 19
2. Björn Borg 8
Ivan Lendl
4. Guillermo Vilas 7
5. Thomas Muster 6
Roger Federer
7. Novak Djokovic 5
8. Andriy Medvedev 4
Gustavo Kuerten
10. Jimmy Connors 3
Mats Wilander

So, taking all of this in account, I guess that Roger and Novak are much better clay courters than an “impressionistic” assessment ranks them.
Chile Marcelo Ríos
Spain Juan Carlos Ferrero


mat4 Says:

Sorry: Rios and Ferrero have won 3 MS on clay…


Okiegal Says:

Pete looked sad and forlorn…..I guess you would after admitting Roger was better than you
were!


jalep Says:

@Mat4
I like your list more than mine. Not trying to be impressionistic – my phone gives me two recent greatest clay court tennis players ever lists – both searches having Nole out of the top ten.

Still the accumulated percentages for Roger, and Nole were compiled against the same field of players – nothing anyone can do about that. Any player in any era has that. However formats change and number of opportunities to collect wins maybe too. Not sure how any list doesn’t involve some blurry impressionism. Tennis is not a constant – too many variables over time when listing top players Ever in a category.


jalep Says:

How could I forget. 4 wins over Rafa. Not 3.


jalep Says:

How could I forget. 4 wins over Rafa. Not 3.


chris ford1 Says:

I remember towards the end of 2013 there was one of those dumb tennis.com lists that bundled apples and oranges (male and female players) and rated Djokovic #46 in the Open Era,
So lists have their flaws.

An 80% of above W-L percentage is the stuff of the greats of the game on their best surface. Novak is now on the Top 10 list of players winning percent on clay – barely, in the low 80s. Fed slipped out of the Top 10. Getting in the high 80s speaks of legendary mastery like Borg’s 87.5% on grass, or Fed’s 88.4%. Only 3 players in the Open Era went above 90 and had near total dominance. Pete Sanpras on grass 90.0%, Borg on clay 92.6%, and Nadal…who has a 98.3% winning percent on you know what. (and if you drop a few clay losses he had as a 15-17 year old it goes up to 99.2%.
That is the King that two great clay players, Fed and Nole, have to have factored into their careers. One of the most dominant records in all sports. It doesn’t diminish Fed or Nole, each having almost always made the QFs or above on clay all their careers. It makes Rafa even more special given the competition.

With Borg, I think Rafa would be his better in any age they played together, but Borg would have gotten some nice clay wins off him. The thing I think about most with Borg is the 7 years in his prime he skipped the AO in the pre-Slam Count Matters!! days. When he was the best grass court player by far and the AO was played on grass. That and him leaving on burnout issues a modern sports psychologist could have helped him with. 11 Slams, but there could have been a lot more.


chris ford1 Says:

Matt4 – we make the same point, but with dissimilar numbers. Sometimes the stats vary…mine are drawn from a post 2014 AO list.

http://www.tennis28.com/slams/winpct_onesurface.html

And Jalep, by winning percent, following the 2014 season, Fed dropped out of the Top 10 in clay and Nole just made it, in terms of winning percentages.
Right now, a present list of the Top 10 players on grass, hardcourt, and clay has 2 players making Top 10 in all of them. Borg and Djokovic. Borg with far higher percentages.


jalep Says:

Nice link! Thanks for that, Chris Ford1.


django Says:

Chris Ford
Your posts are fantastic. So much info. I have lots to learn.


jalep Says:

Two more clay titles for Rafa and he’ll pass Guillermo Villas for total number clay titles won. Were there more clay titles on offer in Villas day?

Could have sworn Rafa passed that guy long ago!

Tennis28.Com does not do impressionistic lists.

By the way, Nole and Federer are out of the top 20 on that list.


peter Says:

To all those who think nole will start declining at age 28, why is this so?

1. other players like federer, ferrer are playing well into their 30s and still near their best. Ferrer grinds harder than djokovic even..

2. Players are getting better as they age. Federer thinks hes improved over the years even though physically he slowed a bit. Wawrinka peaked at 28,29 years old. The average age in the top 10 is now 27, 5 years older than it was compared to 10 years ago.

3. Djokovic has supreme fitness, very light for his height, superb flexibility, all of which reduces injuries and prolongs his career. He actually runs less than nadal and murray due to his sliding and therefore will outlast them in career terms.

The concensus in my group is he will have an agassi like career ~ grab a lot of slams when the field becomes weak. His level will start to drop at 30, but will remain a slam contender until 35 simply due to the weak field. Federer at 33 would have won slams if he did not face an in prime nole, a 33 year old nole will not need to face an in prime player of his calibre.


Nirmal Kumar Says:

This is what Boris Becker thinks about Roger, Rafa and Novak.

http://www.tennisworldusa.org/Boris-Becker-Rafa-Nadal-and-Novak-Djokovic-are-a-level-below-Roger-Federer-articolo23244.html

And there are foolish comments here about Novak being better than Roger and Rafa.


jane Says:

interesting what becker says in that link about his generation, how they enjoyed it more.


jane Says:

here’s a great stat i read today:

“Djokovic is the sport’s premier front runner. His career record after winning the first set in his matches is an exemplary 549 wins and only 26 defeats for a winning percentage of .955. That is the best in the Open Era. On that list at No. 2 is Bjorn Borg, followed by Rafael Nadal, Jimmy Connors, John McEnroe, Ivan Lendl, and Roger Federer (at No. 7 with a .930 percentage). Rounding out the top ten are Murray, Arthur Ashe and Eddie Dibbs.”

full article is here:

http://www.tennischannel.com/news/NewsDetails.aspx?newsid=15072


peter Says:

Djokovic right now is a better player than rafa and roger, he has been the better player overall for 4 years now.

The boris becker article title is taken out of context. What becker really meant is that skill wise federer is better than rafa and nole. However tennis is not just about skill, nadal trumps all in terms of mentality and nole is beating everybody now due to his superior fitness.

With the superior baseline game nadal and nole have, there is no need to excel in serves or volleys. Nadal actually can serve harder but he prefers to spin it so he gets to grind the point out. This is all part of their game so they can force opponents into long rallies during their service games, extending the match, then relying on superior fitness and mentality to win the match in the long run.


Wog Boy Says:

@peter
@1:44am @2:39am

Thumbs up.


blah Says:

Some thoughts about Novak, as great as he is-

Us open- being the #1 hard court player last few years, he has only won this once. He lost 2 finals to Nadal here, 1 to Murray, and last year when the field opened for him was taken out by Nishikori- he must start racking up slams here to get close to Nadal/Federer. A curious case why he hasn’t won more slams here.

I also saw earlier a post mentioning Novak in his prime > Rafa in his prime, using their age to compare; I feel that Rafa’s prime is sporadic- he’s injured too often to have a period that you can call his prime- i would say his prime are years that are years when he’s healthy. That being said, these guys are 50/50 on most surfaces with the exception of indoor hardcourts being a heavy advantage for Novak and clay being a slight edge for Rafa (would be interesting to see them play more grass matches)

I still don’t think Novak’s aggressive enough or in his 2011 form… if you watch his game back when he was just breaking into top 3, his forehand was hit much harder and was much more of a weapon


chris ford1 Says:

Jane – Nice comment. There was talk of how hard it is to beat Nole when he wins the 1st set (not that it is easy when he loses the 1st set either) – but your linked article put it into perspective and of course put Nole in the company of other stars I hadn’t realized were such good frontrunners.

Blah – It seems the USO vexes Nole for a few reasons. The crowd sometimes bothers him. People know that. A larger factor I think is Djokovic in baseline mode plays a precision game..high IQ. Built on creating dominant court position after multiple shots to get an angle for an easy winner. The problem is that the poor design of Ashe allows funneling of wind, then courtside the winds actually shift and swirl while outside the wind is in one direction. It disrupts the precision game built on strikes towards the lines. And the premise that if a player resists, Nole is happy to trade 30 shots because he has much lower odds of doing an UFE than his opponent the longer the rally goes. (In the case of Nadal, he can stay in those rallies because if he uses high rpm spin shots with power, he can stay with Nole and fight the wind better – but much of the time Nadal will leave a high bounce right in Djokers power zone and Nadal eats a scorching forehand cross court or Nole’s BDTL.)
Djoker needs to do more to cope with the wind by practice in those conditions, even get a seat on each end taken with a Nole fan holding a small flag up that Nole could see as a windsock. And shut out the crowd more, but that may be impossible for Nole, who is waiting for them to begin loving him….

As for his forehand – it is like Rafa’s 2010 serve. Both guys can do more than they do now – but they have teams that try to get them to do the optimum balance between hard fast flat shots and smoking serves – and the level they can hit at consistently with the least errors. I would say that both should go back to really smacking the ball to make the opponent think more about what each serve or stroke shot will be..And with Djokovic, with his sometimes comical ineptitude with overhead Djokosmashes at mid court – to let the ball bounce and do a 95% chance winner with a hard forehand hit at an acute angle.


Nirmal Kumar Says:

The boris becker article title is taken out of context

There is no out of context here. Skill wise Roger is ahead. quite simple. that’s why he has 17 slams. Ofcouse fitness wise he is not the best now, but at 34 who expect him to be superior there. that’s the only reason he gets beaten nowadays. If he had better fitness, he would have been the No 1 player.

With the superior baseline game nadal and nole have, there is no need to excel in serves or volleys

Actually you are wrong. Novak is trying hard to improve his serve and volley skills. Just that he is not able to, but he is improving slowly.


Hippy Chick Says:

I dont believe i actually said that Novak would decline past the age of 28,hes the world number 1 riding the crest of a winning wave,and has bagged a GS and a couple of Masters so far and so early in the year,i was just a little irritated with Michael writing everybody else off and penciling Nole down for everything,as i believe everybody else has another level to go up,i just believe its a bit unrealistic to claim that a player any player, will win another gazillion GS when many other all time greats tried and failed,didnt realize so many posters would get so upset by this?….


mat4 Says:

About those lists, there are always distorting factors. I gave also the list of win of MS1000 or equivalent, because in the 70, 80, players did not play each other so often, especially on clay. Stats can lie, so it is important to put them in a context. It is not the same thing to win 5 MS250 and one MS1000.

So, here are two other stats: number of victory against top 10 players:

Winning percentage W–L %
1. Björn Borg 63–27 70.00
2. Rafael Nadal 129–62 67.54
3. Roger Federer 186–98 65.49
4. Boris Becker 121–65 65.05
5. Ivan Lendl 119–66 64.32
6. Novak Djokovic 135–76 63.98
7. Pete Sampras 124–71 63.59
8. John McEnroe 83–62 57.24
9. Andre Agassi 109–90 54.77
10.Andy Murray 73–67 52.15

But here, let’s not forget that both Novak lost 43, Roger 42, and Rafa 30 matches among the three of them.

Without the matches against Rafa on clay, Fed is at 80,65% of win, it ranks him third overall, behind Nadal and Borg.

With Rafa out of the picture, Novak is at 84,84%, which puts him third on the all time list.

So, there could be good arguments to ranked them 3. and 4. players on clay on the all time list.

About Borg and Nadal. There is absolutely no way to know how would their match-up go. I wrote about the era differences before, so I won’t repeat myself again, but it is just baseless speculation.


Michael Says:

Alison,

You always get me wrong. Praising Novak will not in any way belittle the achievements of Fedal or Andy or other players. I just meant to say that after this fantastic double, the momentum seems to rest with Novak going forward into the Clay court season and also advantaged by the fact that Rafa is not being at his best right now where he himself has on record stated that he is lacking confidence. This year as things stand now, I get a feeling that Novak might replicate his 2011 success considering the depleted competition and a little jaded creamy top. Still nothing is for granted and any player can upset Novak’s apple cart and his momentum. Who would have thought Nishikori beating Novak at the US Open ? Tennis is so much unpredictable/dicey and this is the beauty and attraction of this sport where you will be surprised and shocked with the most unexpected of results. Rafa looked invincible at the French open, but would anybody have expected Soderling to achieve that break through of stopping Rafa’s jaggernaut.So, anything can happen ? But we live for the moment and as of now it appears that Novak has the upper hand.


Hippy Chick Says:

Mat4 my post was more with what Michael said in mind….


Hippy Chick Says:

Mat4 well exactly its fun to speculate and thats why we are all here,but i think people get carried away sometimes,domination is a today thing but not necassarliy a tomorrow thing,no disrespect but Michael doesnt usually belittle other players in favour of his favorites….


Nirmal Kumar Says:

HC@5:11, fantastic post.

Yeah similar statements were made about Roger post 2010 AO, Rafa after 2010, Novak after 2011. But we all know still everyone had their shared for past 4 years.

You are just an injury away from being title less for a year. But people talk about being No 1 for next 3-4 years already. Quite crazy.


Hippy Chick Says:

Sorry post was from Michael not Mat4,Michael and Mat4 please ignore my posts at 5.28am,5.34am….


Hippy Chick Says:

Michael hmm yeah ok,im not hoping for a 2011 type season though sorry,i hope my two favorites get in there and both bag a GS this year,i enjoy whats happening in the here and the now,im not like others who predict the future and state their opinions as bona fide facts….


Hippy Chick Says:

Nirmal thankyou….


mat4 Says:

About Novak and the USO, did anyone thought about… luck, circumstances?

First, until 2011, Federer was the better player on this kind of surface, and they always played against each other in the semi.

In 2010, Nadal was on a tier, and was the better player.

In 2012, Novak played the best tennis at the tournament (his QF against DelPo was the best match of the USO), but the conditions from the semi onward favoured heavily the player with the better serve and the more defensive game, in that case Murray, since points were decided by the heavy wind. When the wind finally stopped, Novak won two sets easily. The fifth was decided by the fact that Novak played three sets against Ferrer the day before (so much about his “inhuman” stamina).

In 2013, Novak lost that final in Paris, in fact. I also think that the way Rafa served at 4-4, 0-40 in the third was gamesmanship. It was the key moment of the match.

(And to claim that to take a minute by serve is gamesmanship does not make me a Rafa hater, Okiegal. It is a strategy devised by uncle Toni at the beginning of Rafa’s career. It is in Rafa’s book. Rafa used to serve like the others, then switched to long pauses between serves on Toni’s advice. It was a way to put returners out of their rhythm, a strategy also used by Sabatini against Graff at the USO, but when returning. That’s why Rafa asked Carlos Bernardes not to be the chair umpire in his matches, because Bernardes doesn’t allow this kind of behaviour. [Documented on YT.])

In 2014, Kei was the better player.

Luck has a part in a player career. Novak was very lucky in 2011, but quite unlucky in 2012 and 2013. Difficult draws, conditions that don’t suit his game, the pressure to win RG, and a few very bad decisions — in conditions when the competition is outstanding. Before 2011, he had no real chance of winning.


peter Says:

17 slams can easily be explained away by weak era, also the fact he has crowd advantage every single match and tournament. There is abundance of statistics in sports which has shown crowd advantage makes up to 30% difference in performance.

If fed is fit, he would still lose to a fit nadal. There is no concensus on whether a fed 06, nole 11 or rafa 10 is the best. Its scissors paper rock.

As to the becker article, clearly i agree skill wise fed is better, so others need to find other ways to beat him eg. Getting fitter and stronger, which they have.

Novak being no.1 for next few years is a realistic prediction. I already thought that would be the case years back, because
Fedal will decline earlier than he does. Getting no.1 for him is actually a lot easier than winning multiple slams in a year, as demonstrated in past few years.

As to whether nole will win multiple slams this yr, he may or may not. He should have won multiple slams in the past but hasnt due to various reasons. Having the crowd against him in most of the slams certainly hurts him ( the fact that he won most of his titles in australia and china, two countries where he has most crowd support, is not coincidence.)


mat4 Says:

@Nirmal K:

That’s the reason why I am so prudent with my assessments of Novak future career. Yes, players today are in general in better shape longer. Yes, Federer, Ferrer, play exceptionally well at 33. But who can assert that 4K won’t dominate the Tour in two years? Or Kyrgios, or Thiem? Or, why not, Rafa again?

To quote master Oogway: [...] yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift. That is why it is called the “present.”


mat4 Says:

@Peter:

“( the fact that he won most of his titles in australia and china, two countries where he has most crowd support, is not coincidence.)”

You could be on something here. Let’s not forget Rome, where he won three times, once from a set down against Rafa, and where he has a large fan base.


mat4 Says:

About talent, skill: Gilles Simon recently gave an interview where he spoke about talent and skill. It is quite interesting, and deviate from the usual musing.

You can find it here:

http://www.twitlonger.com/show/n_1skgmmm


peter Says:

Indeed, when nole hit the famous shot in us 11, he moved the crowd to his side and suddenly federer’s level dropped dramatically broken twice and lost 3 games in a row. Nole didn’t win because of that single shot, federer was still in a dominant position serving for the match at deuce. It was because the crowd which has changed the whole match around, making federer nervous and miss more shots as he has rarely faced such a situation before.

In french opens and us opens nole is often jeered by the crowd no matter the opponent. In wimby 13 described by jelena as the ‘most hostile crowd’ ever he was inflicted his worst slam defeat in the past 6, 7 years.


Hippy Chick Says:

Off topic nice picture of Rafa and Nole together,as i also mention Nole at least i cant be called a Rafa fanatic thats only interested in the hot body….


Nirmal Kumar Says:

Peter, you are making some funny statements here. If you go by the crowd, Novak should not have won any of the semis against Roger. Even recently on IW, the crowd was entirely on Roger’s side, still Novak would win the match. If you go by crowd support, Roger should be winning every tournament he plays.

On a bad day, you could blame on many factors including the crowd. But it’s basically the opponent and to a certain extent yourself to blame for the loss.


mat4 Says:

@Alison:

I also have a hot body. Although it’s just fever…


Hippy Chick Says:

Mat4 lol,my hubby takes his shirt of and says look at my one pack,what he really means is his beer belly….


mat4 Says:

@Alison:

A one pack is a huge, long-term investment, something that merits respect.


Markus Says:

@mat4: Thank you for that link to the Gilles Simon interview. It’s a good comment on the TV commentators/writers who indiscriminately tag players as “with talent”, “no talent”, “more talent”, “less talent”. Agree with him, flamboyance does not necessarily mean talent.


Markus Says:

@mat4: Thank you for that link to the Gilles Simon interview. It’s a good comment on the TV commentators/writers who indiscriminately tag players as “with talent”, “no talent”, “more talent”, “less talent”. Agree with him, flamboyance does not necessarily mean talent.


Markus Says:

I swear, Hippy Chick, I hit the submit button only once. Only once. Only once.


Hippy Chick Says:

Mat4 thats exactly what he says lol,ive earned this….;)….

Markcus its OK,its OK LOL LOL….


Hippy Chick Says:

Markus not Markcus sorry….


jane Says:

iI liked reading gilles simon’s comment on talent, very insightful since the term is so nebulous.thanks for sharing mat4.


Emily Says:

@mat4, I had read excerpts from that Simon interview, but hadn’t read the entire thing. He obviously has a better perspective than us b/c he is a player, but I feel there’s a sense of bitterness there. He can have great results, but clearly feels overshadowed by Tsonga or Gasquet b/c they can hit amazing winners. I have heard him called a human backboard b/c he just gets balls back and has the stamina to wear his opponents out. This is a valid game, but it’s obviously not going to get the fanfare of his contemporaries.

I’ve always had very mixed feelings about Simon; I respect his game, but I remember his comments against equal prize money for women. He didn’t need to put down women’s tennis, nor a player like Lopez who is playing amazing for his age. I do completely agree w/ one of his comments, however: Monfils is someone with true talent.


Okiegal Says:

@mat…..

I will concede……you don’t hate Rafa, you just don’t particularly like him! I’ll buy that b/c I don’t hate Roger or Novak either, I just don’t like them. I read Rafa’s book and don’t remember Uncle Tony saying that changing his service pattern was to create gamesmanship?? Maybe Rafa plays better by being slow and deliberate. He’s allowed 20 to 25 secs. If he doesn’t go over, which we all know he does more times than not…….it’s still a lot of time between points considering most all of the other players quick serve. Some players step up and serve in 5 or ten seconds….which is quick compared to Rafa. I read his book and Rafa is methodical in his approach to his game and has those little odd quirks……Uncle Tony may have the mindset that Rafa will have to use gamesmanship to beat anybody, because he lacks in talent…….


Giles Says:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=w65OC8XmtH0&feature=youtu.be
Rafa’s 8 consecutive Monte Carlo titles.
Just WOW!!


mat4 Says:

@Okie:

“I read Rafa’s book and don’t remember Uncle Tony saying that changing his service pattern was to create gamesmanship??”

That’s not what I wrote. But time abuse between points is gamesmanship, since it throws out returners out of their rhythm.

Rafa avg point, in 2012, lasted 52 second, now 46 seconds. He still takes an avg of 30 seconds to serve. He is the slowest player on the Tour, numero uno for years.

Okie, it is not a question of liking or not. I don’t especially like Federer neither, nor Ferrer. It is a question of truth (Andy Murray excepted: when I write a negative comment, it is to provoke the DA ;-).

Why don’t you write something unpleasant about Novak to see how I would react? But just back it up with stats, facts, whatever. You’ll see that I don’t watch him through pink glasses, and that I am ready to admit when something he does is not OK.

E.g., his “injuries” in matches before 2011… gamesmanship. Did he do it on purpose? Perhaps, perhaps not, but who cares? It was gamesmanship.

I also don’t like his racquet breaking, his yelling, and insults to the public (he did it at least once). My son acted once in a similar manner (he lost the TB in a decider 13-11 and he cried) and I almost forbid him to play tennis (although it almost broke my heart to see him so sad; would have qualified for the semi of the tournament…).

Let’s be Frank in New York and Ernest in Chicago: Rafa is the nasty boy of tennis. Novak is so classy. Almost like Fed, but improved.

;-)


mat4 Says:

So, you don’t like Novak? Ha… Novak hater! I knew it!


Markus Says:

@mat4:

“pink glasses” are the same as “rose-tinted glasses” but the latter is used as the idiomatic expression for seeing only the pleasant parts. Hope you don’t mind the correction. It can be confusing sometimes for polyglots like you.


mat4 Says:

@Markus:

Thank you. Sometimes I find it very difficult to express myself in English, especially when I am tired. I knew it had something to do with roses, but I couldn’t even remember the expression in French at that moment. Help is always appreciated!


Okiegal Says:

@mat4…..
I’m sorry, I took something out of context in paragraph #6 of your comment…..My bad! I will try to do better in the future with trying to decipher what you really meant next time! Novak was an OK guy by me at one time…..I loved his on court impersonations, even. I laughed…..but when he and Tipsy did the gun video with Rafa being the target, I got off of him like a dirty shirt. That’s my reason…..but doesn’t take away from the fact of his awesomeness as a tennis player. Roger’s arrogance……that’s it!

Hubby and I are going crappie fishing for a little fun in the sun!! Wish me luck! Rafa and I have a lot in common…..
LOL. Have a good day, Mat!!


Okiegal Says:

@mat4

To add to my above comment, I don’t hate anyone. That’s a real strong word and I don’t like it……but I do hate liver!! Lol


Dan the Man Says:

This kind of reinforces the reality of their careers. Djokovic hasn’t really been that successful at the Grand Slams as the other big number ones in history, all of these players did really well when they made the big finals – Fed 17-8, Nadal 14-6, Sampras 14-4. Djokovic is 8-7, and is 3-5 in his last 8. After that amazing breakout year of 2011 when he won 3/4 of the slams, he really has had lackluster Slam Results for a #1. In each of the last 3 years he only won one slam each year. I think he may be turning it around with some of the changes he has made under Becker, though. I think a year earlier, he would have lost that Wimbledon final against Federer, but the improvements in his serve really made the difference in that match. Time will tell.


SG1 Says:

RJ Says:
Wilander perhaps is No. 5 on clay, making Fed no 6? Though I can’t see Wilander beating Fed even on clay, if both were playing each other in their prime

————————-

Federer without Luxilon against Wilander? By no means a slam dunk for Roger.


SG1 Says:

I think that if both Roger and Mats played with Luxilon, I think Roger probably wins in 4 sets.


DC Says:

@peter Says:
17 slams can easily be explained away by weak era, also the fact he has crowd advantage every single match and tournament. There is abundance of statistics in sports which has shown crowd advantage makes up to 30% difference in performance.
————————————————-
and perhaps clay court dominance can be explained by weak-clay era.

if you are suggesting that Fed belonged to a weak era. then Nadals era was also weak since there was no one to challenge him and then perhaps 14 GS can be explained by a weak era.


SG1 Says:

The million dollar match-up: Borg vs. Nadal without Luxilon


SG1 Says:

OK….10 million dollar match up with a million not being worth what it used to be.


Hippy Chick Says:

Mat4 i agree hate is quite strong i dont even hate people in the real world,the only players i would say i dislike are as i said the other day Gulbis and Cilic,when it comes to Novak i will admit to having bitterness and annymosity,but on the other hand great respect and admiration for his achievements,but i also said that too the other day lol….


Hippy Chick Says:

Okie i hate liver,i only ate i once when i was a little girl,and progetile vomited everywhere,so i havent touched it since,even the smell of it when they cook it at the care home where i work turns my stomach and makes me feel sick….


Hippy Chick Says:

Giles many thanks for both of those links,only one KOC indeed most welcome ;-)….


Giles Says:

HC. You’re very welcome. Hope you enjoyed the vid as much as I did. :)


mat4 Says:

@Okiegal, Alison:

What, you hate foie gras! I knew it!


Hippy Chick Says:

Mat4 yuck urgh,the funny thing is i like Pate though,Foie Gras is where they force feed geese though i believe?….

And Giles yes i did very much ;)….


chris ford1 Says:

DC – If logic was as simple as saying X had splendid results due to a 4 year weak era that padded his stats, therefore Y’s splendid results are due no doubt to a weak era?
Then we wouldn’t have to think as hard and weigh facts as much.
X is such, Y is of certain attributes like X, therefore Y=X.
-
Many long articles have been written about Nadal and his special dominance, which is quite rare in sports, analyzing attributes. Because it is not explainable by a sudden fall-off in the level of competition. The academies producing most the clay players, traditionally, in Spain and France, had players in the pipeline better than ever. It was because Rafa was special, a beast. His spectacular results as a teen, was early on compared to Federer’s dominance at the time. But just as he was whipping Fed on clay, sometimes on hardcourt, the view of Federer circa late 2007 was becoming less “He is God” amd more “Big Fish in a small pond”. Unquestionably an all-time great, but it took Nadal to show the Emperor had a crown and clothes, but no ermine cape and the crown was slipping beginning at Wimbledon 2007.

People following the game were realizing that aside from Nadal, maybe this brash new kid who beat him in Toronto with an unpronouncable name from a rogue nation – tennis had long had a weak cast confronting Federer.
Since 2001. An aged Agassi, a headcase Safin, a footwork hindered Roddick, Ferrero, an almost always injured, Nalbandian/Haas, Moya, Coria, Henman, Blake, who broke his neck, and Hewitt. Leyton Hewitt, a 2nd tier talent, had been #1 for over a year. Others came, threatened, got injured or sick, and went off the radar.
The weak era ended in 2007 with Nadal contesting Fed off clay and the promising young Djokovic finishing the year as #3.


Hippy Chick Says:

Michael also lets just say its always been enough for me to be happy,i dont need everybody else in the world to be miserable for me to be completely happy….


Markus Says:

“Schadenfreude”, a lot of people here has that. Me, just a little bit. I don’t jump for joy when somebody I don’t like fails, I just smile a bit and make sure nobody sees it.


Giles Says:

Hope you enjoyed the above little clip, I did. Lol


chris ford1 Says:

This threads about played out, but before Monte Carlo, Djoker is working to promote a childrens marathon in Serbia as part of UN Sports Day.

He also tweeted though his Foundation an interview he recently did on 10 tips he believes are important for his success. Most are pretty good, even original, though a few are common to just about every successful person explaining personal success. And I have no doubt he lives it daily, and deeply believes in these things. Good insight into how he thinks and views things.
The one that stuck with me, especially, was for the confidence to succeed, it comes more from building his strength of character, than from victories.


chris ford1 Says:

It would be nice if I added the link. I do that a lot on emails, posts on blogs. Forget the attachment and remember within seconds of hitting “send”. Darn! One of these years I’ll fix that flaw as part of my 39 steps to achieve slightly better than average success in life!

http://blog.novakdjokovicfoundation.org/sport/10-tips-from-novak-djokovic-on-how-to-achieve-success/


El_Flaco Says:

@RZ That’s an interesting way of looking at the GOAT debate.


RZ Says:

@El_Flaco – what are you referring to? I don’t think anything I wrote on this thread has to do with the GOAT debate.


Nathan Says:

Rankings of top tennis players:
1. Rod Laver
2. Roger Federer
3. Rafael Nadal (only if he wins his 10th French Open), then he and Sampras switch)
4. Pete Sampras
5. Roy Emerson
6. Bjorn Borg
7. Jimmy Connors
8. Ken Rosewall
9. Andre Agassi
10. Ivan Lendl


Nathan Says:

If you count pre Open Era accomplishments, you have to recognize Laver as the best ever. If not, he drops out of the top 10. The Fed-Rafa debate is interesting, and while Roger owns Grand Slams and most time at #1, remember the competition he dominated early in his career. He was in the worst era of tennis that we have, only playing an ailing Sampras once (in a 5 set Wimby classic), and had years without Rafa coming in. Rafa is more dominant on his best surface than Fed is on his, and owns the head to head. Very interesting debate, I could see how people could argue both ways, but as a die-hard RaFan, I feel that Federer is the GOAT simply because of the thing this article is written about and the GS total.


peter Says:

As i mentioned, crowd advantage in sports is fact, there have been people who do PHDs on it in university. u can choose not to accept it and u refuse to learn, not my problem.

Crowd advantage already gives federer an extra 10~20% boost every single slam, also he gets scheduling advantage every match he nearly always get the 730pm prime slot, cool night tennis without direct sunlight, thats also another huge, unfair advantage as playing under heat drains a lot more energy. Fed goes 5 or 6 matches under cooler conditions and is 100% in the finals and the other bloke such as nole plays at least half of his matches in the heat. Nole would and should be more drained throughout the two weeks.

Thats why slam count is just a number. When u look at other factors, crowd advantage, scheduling advantage, quality of opponents, the 17 slams is not that impressive. A 14 slam player, who gets lucky over his career, can easily add 3 more slams. Thats what exactly happened. If nole or rafa had all those advantages, i would expect them to have won many more slams.

As to the weak era, fed was the only player to take full advantage of it, because he was in his prime while nadal was not. Besides federer, players like agassi, hewitt and roddick were the biggest benefactors. When nadal reached his prime in 07,08, the weak era ended.

The weak era doesnt benefit nadal as much, why? Simply said, he only won RG during 05~07, he would have done the same in ANY era, simply hes too good on clay and would have won against any clay opponent in history, including Borg. While federer can lose quite a few titles if he played alongside prime Sampras at wimby, Djokovic at AO., etc.

A guy called Agassi has already said nadal is greater than federer, even though nadal has only 14 slams. While by the numbers fed is better thats what most people would go with, it is not easy to say nadal is greater. he must have a very good reason.


Dc Says:

Interviewer – which was your best year ?

Nole ( replies instantly ) – 2011
Nadal ( replies instantly )- 2010
Fed –umm, which one should I pick …..that’s a tough question.


chris ford1 Says:

DC – That is because Fed has to stop and think about when, in 2003-2006, which one of the 4 years the other players were even weaker than in the other years.


El_Flaco Says:

RZ Says:
@El_Flaco – what are you referring to? I don’t think anything I wrote on this thread has to do with the GOAT debate.
- – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – -
Sorry, I meant @RJ


Okiegal Says:

@Giles…..Loved the links! Eight in Barcelona too!!
Nine Frenchies……WOWZER!! I just love the red earth…..grass and clay, the natural sur-frace! :)


Okiegal Says:

@Giles 3:53…….You so bad!! :) Just wait, someone will come up with a retaliation video….can’t wait……I did laugh, but you can bet Rafa and Roger wouldn’t think this is funny at all! The bad smash has happened to all of them.

I just thought of something….maybe this vid is in retaliation of the Rafa one where he is filling up the gas tank??? :)…….No doubt this vid was conjured up by someone who likes both Roger and Rafa…. could that even be possible?? Lol


mat4 Says:

The topic of the weak era is resurging again, although on this very blog, it has been demonstrated, with numbers, stats, that Federer rather made the era look weak.

Enough of that. It’s just like saying that Rafa won 9 FO because it was a weak era on clay.

So why, in many weak eras that were, nobody won 17 slams or nine FO until now?

Quite the contrary. I see it as a absolutely outstanding era. I watch tennis for 40 years now, and we never had such players, nor was tennis more demanding.

A stat I wrote before, but just to remind you: Novak’s opponents in GS finals have won an average of 9,46 slams… and he had to face at least one the big four in all of his GS wins and every time he made the final, two of them 3 times when I won, 5 times when he was the runner-up.

It is the same thing with Federer and Nadal. The level of their opposition was outstanding. Just to note: Rafa avg opponent in finals had won an average of 9,6 GS, Fed’s avg opponent in finals has won 6 GS (don’t forget that Fed, with 17 GS, improves the avg of the two others).


mat4 Says:

… when he won… instead of I (but why? why?)


chris ford1 Says:

Matt4 – Come on, in the 2003-2007 period in question, how do you come up with his avaerage foe being very accomplished.

Of the 12 Slams he won, his average foe at the time had 1.58 Slams vs. Roger. 1.0 if you drop the aging Agassi, who at 35 was a marvel, but not playing like an 8 Slam winner. 5 of those he beat were without a Slam win. The rest stagnant at 1,2.

One 0 Slam guy was Djokovic, though young Djokovic was just starting out, and Nadal also in 2007, had 3 clay titles and was in his 1st year of really playing good on grass (Feds only Slam win over Rafa)
It would be wrong to “retrofit” them with their present Slam tallies and claim Roger was fighting a 8 and 14 Slam winner in full form in 2007. (As was, Rafa stil came within a razors margin of beating Roger in 2007.)

Of the 5 he had after the end of the weak era, one was against Murray (0) in 2008, with Rafa and Nole knocking each other out of the picture from their Madrid fight, Fed won against Soderling (0), Roddick(1), in 2010 Murray (0), and 2012 Murray yet again (still with zero Slams).

So of the 17 Slam finals Fed won, the average was success against a foe that averaged 1.18 Slams at the time they faced Fed. Drop Andre, and the average goes to a 0.71 Slams won foe facing Fed.

Obviously, to win, Djokovic and Rafa have faced a far higher “Slam Count” foe.
Djokovics foes on his Slam wins averaged 5.88 Slams in their career. The only one he won with a foe less than 2 Slams, was Jo Tsonga with 0 in 2008.
Rafa? 6.3 Slams was the average foe he beat.


jane Says:

chrisford1, with rafa, is that because of so many versus fed? just wondering, because i know he’s faced a number of 0 slam winners in finals: soderling, ferrer and berdych of the top of my head. were there more?


chris ford1 Says:

Yes, Fed is the main driver of the high “Slamcount” Rafa faced. Get a zero like berdych, but add a 15 Sam Count for Fed next outing and the average jumps.
But of Roger’s 17, the only opponents he won off of that had more than two Slams at the time were an aged Agassi in his last decent match (8), and Rafa’s 3 in 2007 – the only time he beat Nadal in a Slam.

With Rafa, 10 of his 14 wins came against Federer or Djokovic. Then 4 with no Slams Puerta, Berdych, Soderling, and Ferrer (the last in 2013 after he just missed disaster in the semi with Nole)

Djokers 1st was Tsonga, but all his other Slam wins have been against Rafa, Fed, or Andy.


Hippy Chick Says:

Rafa did beat Fed in the semis to win his first GS,just as Novak did with his first GS,and i wish people would stop saying Novak was unlucky with that net incident in that semi against Rafa at the FO in 2013,in actuall fact we could just say that Rafa was unlucky that he didnt win the match in the fourth set,how many more times are we going to here that same old chestnut repeated?….


Okiegal Says:

@Chick….I get sick of that reference too. What was weird about that was Novak’s reaction….he looked shocked and genuinely suprised by the call against him.


Giles Says:

@Okie. Whoever made that clip is a genius with a great sense of humour. Still laughing!


Hippy Chick Says:

Okie yeah i just think its unfair,Roger and Nole seem to get credit for their amazing tennis,where as fans just say Rafa was lucky in this match lucky in that match,hell even when he won the FO in 2011 some people said hes lucky that he played Roger in the final and not Novak as there was no way he wouldve beaten Novak in the imaginary final that Novak didnt even make….


ANEL BOJANA Says:

Hippy Chick,
Please be honest who is giving credit to Nole for his amazing tennis? Is that Giles?
Right now Nole is were he is and it is normal that he is getting more credits than Rafa but wait and You will see when Rafa start winning.
I read comments here and I never sow as much hatred toward Rafa from Novak’s fans as from Rafa’s toward Novak.It is not from You but if You are honest You will see from who.


Hippy Chick Says:

AB i think you rather missed the point my dear,i was actually talking about specific matches which Rafa has won in the past and the word lucky crops up over and over again,yet when the others beat Rafa we here how amazing they played,anyway Giles doesnt care for Novak which is his perogative and i cant speak for him personally only for myself,but in fact your wrong Rafa does have to stmach his fair share of negativity especially a couple of years ago when he was doing well,terms like butpicker fans,Essex girls,Armani sniffers/lovers,dopers,fans that are only in love with his body etc etc some of the many adjectives used to describe his fans,lets just say it goes with the territory if ones favorite happens to be doing well at the time,theres no saints on this forum,tough been a fan….


Hippy Chick Says:

Also everybody here knows i always try to be fair,i have defended Novak and Roger on occasion,and critiqued Rafa to the absolute disdain of my fellow Rafa fans as i dont think hes perfect far from it,none of them are,and im not one that choses to fawn over everything they do either….


Hippy Chick Says:

Sorry last time but you will find i defended Nole on the other thread,i just didnt make a big thing about it,i said my piece then it was done with….


ANEL BOJANA Says:

Hippy Chick,
I did not missed the point I know that You were talking about specific matches and people not giving the credit to Rafa for them but I wanted to tell You that there are people who do not want to give credit to Novak too.Also there was nothing against You,only to tell You that Rafa’s fans are much worst towards Novak.I personally do not care about Giles because for me he is the hater nor I wanted You to speak for him. I just said if You are honest You will see how much people like him hate.When Novak was playing in Madrid even blind could see how much Rafa’s fans hate Novak.


ANEL BOJANA Says:

I am really sorry If You get offended by my posts. English is not my first language and that is why I do not post very often.Nothing really against You.


Hippy Chick Says:

AB no not offended by your posts at all your actually a fair minded and level headed young lady/man sorry i dont know your gender?i thought it was me that offended you to be honest,im not here to grind an axe with anyone just here to give my opinion Roger/Rafa/Novak/Andy are all amazing players whomever your a fan of its all cool ;-)….


rogerafa Says:

It seems some of the Rafa worshipers are back in full force. Not surprising given that the European clay swing is about to start. These posters, who shifted to this blog after tennistalk shut down, were apparently banned here. Holding self-serving, hawk-eyed and conspiratorial views, they are back with new monikers. I hope they do not end up polluting this site again.


Hippy Chick Says:

Rogerafa i dont know who these fans are,i could be wrong but there seems to be only myself,Okie,Brando,Giles left of Rafa fans?do you remember Danny Morris and Tennis Zod that also came here whom were Novak fans when tennis talk closed trashing Murray and Nadal?both made Margots life a misery during Wimbledon in 2013?….


jane Says:

bojana, don’t worry about your english; be proud you can write in more than one language. your english is perfectly comprehensible.


rogerafa Says:

@ Hippy Chick

Obviously you guys are regular and long-time posters here but I am more familiar with their methods, their pet themes and their object of hatred. They have repeated the same arguments so many times with almost the same words. It is not that tough to guess who is who.


Hippy Chick Says:

I think that exists in all fan bases though Rogerafa the posters i mentioned,it will be interesting to see which posters pop up out of the woodwork if Novak were to win the FO,from both fan bases….


ANEL BOJANA Says:

Jane,

Thank You very much,but some times people get offended by way that I say something because I still think in Serbian and talk in english or I do not get right ward.Many times at my work here in Canada people thought that I was bossy person, until they did know me better.
As a serbien I am hard core Nole’s fan and for years I follow this site and I still do not understand why people hate so much person that they even do not know.


mat4 Says:

@Alison:

Come on… you know very well that when Rafa beats Novak it’s pure luck or the weather. He’s not an exceptionally gifted player like Novak who makes a first serve return on match point that falls on the line.

;-)

Joking aside, luck is a part of the sport. Novak had his fair share in 2011, but was a bit unlucky in 2012 and 2013. Matches between Rafa and Novak were often decided by one crucial point, and luck favours the braves in these moments.

So, that’s sport. Kudos to the winners. Vae victis!


sienna Says:

Chrissi Ford is full of crap. Andy Roddick would have triple crowned wimbly playing only Rafa and Novak.


ANEL BOJANA Says:

Hippy,
My name is Bojana so I am a girl from Serbia and living in Canada.
Hope we could be friendly toward each other.


mat4 Says:

@Alison:

BTW, just to remind you: it’s not that bad to be an untalented, boring, lucky player, with 14 slams, a career GS, an Olympic gold medal, and a few millions in bank just in case.


mat4 Says:

@Bojana,

Alison is a very nice person. I am so sorry she’s not a Novak fan. But nobody’s perfect.


ANEL BOJANA Says:

mat4,
I know and I am very happy that You and Jane are Novak’s fans.


mat4 Says:

@Bojana:

I couldn’t say it better.


Okiegal Says:

Why are avid Rafa fans considered worshipers and Novak and Roger fans aren’t? Who are the fans with new monikers that are back on here because they got banned? There could be some banned posters from other fan bases too. I’m missing some. They’re probably just getting tired of the same old song and dance…totally understand!

@Rogerafa……Curious……who is your favorite since your moniker includes these two amazing players??

@Giles….I always loved that video of Rafa and Roger cracking up laughing……in happier times! Lol


Hippy Chick Says:

Anel Bojana yes of course we can be friendly to each other,we are all here for the same reason,and thats to cheer on our favorites,im a British Yorkshire gal with a passion for tennis,football,the Pagan lifestyle,and Mr Hugh Jackman,and i went to Canada as a teenager its indeed a beautiful country,and by the way your English is absolutely fine ;-)….

Mat4 lol thanks for the above posts,as Margret Thatcher The Iron Lady used to say,the lady is not for turning….


Hippy Chick Says:

Okie you make a valid point,if your a Rafa fan it must be because of his looks or body,or your a hero worshipper,one poster that i wont name once said to me your such a nice sensible person what is that you could possibly get out of supporting Rafa? WTF i mean millions do support Rafa….


mat4 Says:

@Okiegal, Alison:

Yes, there has to be something wrong being a fan of Rafa, since you feel the need to justify yourself… you, worshippers!

Meanwhile, I’ll continue to worship MS. It must be because of her look or body. WTF, I mean millions do support Maria… Dixi et salvavi animam meam.

:-)


Hippy Chick Says:

Mat4 Annabell Croft said that MS was the most tenacious player on the WTA tour,Serena is the better player and is used to steamrolling her opponents but when things dont go her way and shes struggling unlike Maria she has no plan B,she wouldnt actually be my female player of choice i prefer Radwanska who has so much talent and variety but compared to MS whos the ulimate warrior shes the exact opposite and too fragile mentally….


William Alphonso Says:

Djokovic can stay number one for long as long as no one beats him twice!!! He has the ability to stay number one for 2 years maximum!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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