PARIS (Reuters) – Roger Federer’s gripping four-set victory over friend and compatriot Stan Wawrinka has set up a tantalizing semi-final showdown with clay-court king Rafael Nadal, the 39th meeting between two of the most successful players of all time.
But for Swedish seven-times Grand Slam champion Mats Wilander it’s still not the most intense rivalry in this stand out era of men’s tennis, during which three of the greatest men’s players in history have pushed each other to the limit.
Nadal - Djokovic - Wilander - Rivalries - Generation
“For sure Nadal and Djokovic,” said Wilander when asked which of the rivalries in this phenomenal generation have been the most fascinating.
“I find that Roger and Rafa’s, their rivalry has nearly been overshadowed by the two contrasts in style and the fact that they seem to be so completely different when they are on court,” the Eurosport commentator told Reuters.
Point - Rivalry - Side - Period - Side
“At one point their rivalry was pretty one-sided, and it seems like it’s been pretty one-sided on one side for a period and then the other side for a period… Right now Roger is beating him every time, at least in the last two years.
“So I think that Nadal and Djokovic is probably the most interesting because it’s so even and anything can happen on any surface.”
Federer - Nadal - Novak - Djokovic - Grand
Federer, Nadal and Novak Djokovic have won 52 Grand Slam singles titles between them, a total that far outstrips earlier generations of intense rivalry, such as the Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi era of the 1990s, the Bjorn Borg, John McEnroe and Jimmy Connors’ clashes of the 1970s and early 1980s, or the Australian domination of Rod Laver and Roy Emerson in the 1960s.
While Federer has dominated on grass and hardcourts in assembling his 20 Grand Slams, and Nadal has racked...
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