Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal or Novak Djokovic. Who will win the ‘GOAT’ race? And how many more Grand Slams can each star hope to land?
The conversation about male tennis’ GOAT (Greatest Of All Time) reached fever-pitch on Sunday as Djokovic sealed his 18th major with victory over Daniil Medvedev in Australia.
The Serbian now has a total of 18 Slams, and is sitting menacingly just two shy of both Federer and Nadal.
Djokovic is six years younger than Federer and, while he only has 11 months on Nadal, you feel he still has far more in the tank than the Spaniard.
So, with the clock ticking, what will the numbers look like when all three have hit their last scorching winner?
Advantage Nadal and Djokovic over Federer in ‘GOAT’ race
It’s hard to predict the future with any sort of certainty. Who could have foreseen the effect of COVID-19 on tennis, or Djokovic being disqualified from last year’s US Open?
But it is hard to imagine both Nadal and Djokovic not making it to at least 21 major titles.
That would require Federer to win at least one more to keep pace in the ‘GOAT’ race – and that’s no given.
The Swiss superstar hasn’t won a Slam in over three years and, with the likes of Daniil Medvedev, Dominic Thiem and Stefanos Tsitsipas on the up, his chances may be limited.
It would be truly fitting to see Federer end his career with one more glorious triumph, but it seems a bit of a push.
With Nadal and Djokovic practically unbeatable in Paris and Melbourne respectively – it may come down to who fares best at Wimbledon and the US Open.
Djokovic is perhaps best suited to win across multiple surfaces – but he is playing catch-up – and time is always ticking down.
It promises to be an enthralling race that goes right to the wire. And that’s kind of fitting.