Roger Federer v. Rafael Nadal Sunday in Monte Carlo

Posted on April 27, 2008

For the first time in the history of Monte Carlo Tennis Masters (since 1897), the same two players have reached the final three years in a row. World No. 1 Roger Federer, who snapped No. 2 Rafael Nadal’s 81-match clay-court winning streak in Hamburg last year, is looking to win his first title here, having finished runner-up to the Spaniard the past two years. Should he win, he will become the first World No. 1 to win here since Ivan Lendl 20 years ago.

Meanwhile, Nadal is trying to become the first player to win four consecutive titles since New Zealand’s Anthony Wilding from 1911-14. Also through to the doubles final (w/ Robredo), Nadal is looking to become the second player in ATP Masters Series history (since 1990) to win both singles and doubles titles. Jim Courier won both in Indian Wells in 1991. Nadal is 8-6 lifetime against Federer, including 6-1 on clay.

Federer and Nadal are meeting for the 11th time in a final. In Open Era history, that is the seventh-most number of final match-ups. Ivan Lendl and John McEnroe played the most with 20.

Federer and Nadal have held the longest uninterrupted streak at No. 1 and 2 in the history of the ATP Rankings (since 1973). Federer has been No. 1 for 221 consecutive weeks since Feb. 2, 2004 and Nadal at No. 2 for 144 straight weeks since July 25, 2005.

In 2007, the Swiss native finished No. 1 and captured an ATP-best eight titles (in 12 finals) for fourth consecutive season, including three Grand Slam crowns for third time in four years and at least two ATP Masters Series shields

Became only fourth player since 1973 to end year at No. 1 at least four consecutive years, joining Pete Sampras (6), Jimmy Connors (5) and John McEnroe (4)

Also first player in history to reach all four Grand Slam finals in back-to-back years and has advanced to an all-time record 10 consecutive Slam finals (8-2 during streak)…Has a 12-2 career mark in Grand Slam finals

Since beginning of 2004, has compiled a match record of 334-28 (.922) with Canas, Djokovic, Murray, Nadal, and Nalbandian only players to beat him more than once during that stretch

Has a 54-17 career record in finals (7-7 on clay, five losses to Nadal) and No. 9 in Open Era titles list
Posted his 100th career victory against a Top 10 opponent (100-40) with semifinal victory over No. 3 Djokovic and has a 16-10 mark on clay (1-6 vs Nadal)

Has ranked No. 2 for a record 144 consecutive weeks (since July 25, 2005-present)

Has an 137-13 career record on clay (18 titles) and 121-46 mark on hard courts (5 titles); only player in ’07 to win at
least 30 matches on clay (31-1) and hard courts (31-12)

On clay in ’07, captured five of his six season titles at AMS Monte-Carlo, Barcelona, AMS Rome, Roland Garros and Stuttgart; his only loss on the surface came to Federer in Hamburg final, snapping a record 81-match clay court winning streak; has won 96 of 97 clay court matches since Monte Carlo in April 2005); won Roland Garros for third straight year, becoming first to do so since Bjorn Borg won four in a row from 1978-1981

Has a sparkling 23-8 career record in finals (9-4 in ATP Masters Series) with four of the losses coming to Federer ('05 Miami, '06 Wimbledon, ’07 Hamburg, ’07 Wimbledon)

Has a 35-19 career record against Top 10 opponents, including 22-3 on clay but has only lost once since he’s been ranked in the Top 10 (l. to Federer in ’07 Hamburg final) (ATP Digital Services)