Is Roger Federer the Only Active Player From His Generation of Tennis Players?


It’s been 23 years (and counting) since Swiss Maestro Roger Federer turned professional on the ATP tour. Federer’s first match was in Switzerland(Gstaad), the place he misplaced within the second spherical.

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Whereas it took years for the Swiss obtain constant success on the highest stage, he needed to overpower few of one of the best gamers of that period to earn victories, particularly in majors.

Tennis – Wimbledon – All England Garden Tennis and Croquet Membership, London, Britain – July 3, 2021 Switzerland’s Roger Federer in motion throughout his third spherical match in opposition to Britain’s Cameron Norrie REUTERS/Toby Melville

Roger Federer managed to dominate friends who made their debut across the similar time as him

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The likes of Marat Safin, Andy Roddick, David Nalbandian, and others have given their finest to cease Federer from profitable titles initially. However, the 20-time grand slam champion managed to outlast all these gamers to carve a particular place for himself in tennis historical past.

Since 1998, the Swiss star performed with completely different generations of gamers and every technology posed completely different challenges. Whereas Safin, Hewitt, Nalbandian, and so forth., questioned his baseline prowess, stars like Nadal and Djokovic compelled him to make modifications to his recreation with a view to keep on prime.

Novak Djokovic of Serbia, Rafael Nadal of Spain and Roger Federer of Switzerlan wait to go on stage in the course of the ATP Heritage Celebration at The Waldorf=Astoria on in New York Metropolis. (Photograph by Matthew Stockman/Getty Photos)

Watch this story: Roger Federer, Serena Williams, Maria Sharapova, Naomi Osaka, and Different Tennis Stars at Met Gala through the years

Not many high-performance athletes can proudly say that they’ve confronted completely different generations of gamers and nonetheless managed to return out on prime, which showcases their adaptability to the ever-changing sport.

Now, with Federer taking a break from the on-going 2021 ATP season resulting from a knee surgical procedure, let’s check out the gamers who made their debut on-tour across the similar time as Federer.

Marat Safin

Earlier than the beginning of Federer phenomenon, the Russian tennis star Marat Safin dominated the roost. He was the primary Russian to win the US Open title in 2000(defeated Pete Sampras in straight units).

An offensive baseliner, Safin is a hard-court specialist and by no means hesitated to return to the online. Together with Agassi, the Russian was additionally touted to have probably the greatest double-handed backhands within the historical past of the game.

Posing heavy expertise, the previous world no.1 didn’t chase titles and as a substitute appeared for enjoyable in tennis matches. This lack of dedication may be one of many causes for Safin to not have achieved extended success on the ATP tour.

All through his profession, Safin managed to win two main titles(2000 US Open & 2005 Australian Open). The Russian confronted Federer for a complete of 12 occasions throughout his profession and tasted victory in solely two matches.

Whereas the Swiss Maestro bought the higher off Safin no matter the floor, the latter managed to win the semi-finals within the 2005 Australian Open(the place Roger was the defending champion) and went on to win the finals in opposition to Lleyton Hewitt.

After retirement from skilled tennis, Marat Safin donned the politician’s hat as he bought elected to the Russian parliament. In 2017, he resigned from that place and was just lately seen on the ATP Cup as Staff Russia’s captain.

Andy Roddick

Having made his skilled ATP tour debut within the yr 2000, American tennis star Andy Roddick shot to fame together with his distinctive serve and an enormous forehand. Roddick shot to fame when he gained the 2003 US Open title, defeating Juan Carlos Ferrero in straight units.

INDIAN WELLS, CA – MARCH 20: Andy Roddick pumps his fist after profitable a degree in opposition to Robin Soderling of Sweden in the course of the BNP Paribas Open on the Indian Wells Tennis Backyard on March 20, 2010 in Indian Wells, California. (Photograph by Jeff Gross/Getty Photos)

After this title, Roddick couldn’t win one other main title however reached the slam finals 4 extra occasions. However, the American misplaced all of the matches to Roger Federer. All through Roddick’s profession, he was unable to determine dominance over the Swiss.

The duo confronted one another 24 occasions on the ATP tour with Roger profitable 21 matches in them. Each gamers have their serves to be the important thing weapon they usually again it up with an aggressive baseline recreation. Towards Federer, Roddick fell quick relating to baseline exchanges.

Put up-retirement, Roddick has performed an lively function in tennis by being an analyst at Tennis Channel and stays in fixed contact together with his followers on Twitter.

Lleyton Hewitt maintained a constructive head-to-head report in opposition to Roger Federer initially

Hewitt made his debut in the identical yr as Roger Federer(1998). The Australian was one of many few gamers to have dominated the Swiss Maestro early within the rivalry. The duo confronted one another 28 occasions throughout their profession and Hewitt gained seven out of the primary 9 matches.

Despite the fact that Federer bounced again since 2004, the Aussie’s unbelievable baseline protection recreation troubled Roger initially. Not simply the Swiss, Hewitt managed to register memorable victories in opposition to contemporaries like Marat Safin, Andy Roddick, Andre Agassi, and Pete Sampras.

In truth, Hewitt was one of many few gamers to have a constructive head-to-head report in opposition to Pistol Pete. Recognized for placing up a battle until the final level, Hewitt managed to win two main titles by defeating Sampras and David Nalbandian( 2001 US Open & 2002 Wimbledon).

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Put up-retirement, Lleyton Hewitt performs an lively function in Australian tennis as he might be seen in a number of participant bins throughout tour matches and he continues to be the Australian workforce captain within the ATP Cup.

DIVE DEEPER

“I’m in Full Admiration of Serena”: When Roger Federer Settled the GOAT Debate
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