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Roger Federer & Rafael Nadal

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Roger Federer & Novak Djokovic
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Rafael Nadal & Novak Djokovic
Federer and Nadal have played each other 38 times.Their most recent encounter was in the final of the 2017 Shanghai Masters. Nadal leads the head to head 23-15. Of these matches, 24 have been in finals with Nadal leading 14-10. Of their 12 meetings in majors, Nadal has won 9 of them. Nadal leads 5-0 at the French Open and 3-1 at the Australian Open, while Federer leads 2-1 at Wimbledon. The two have yet to meet in the US Open.

Federer with 20 total major titles, and Nadal with 17, are first and second on the men's all-time list for the most majors titles, and hold numerous other records between them. Together they have won 11 consecutive Grand Slam tournaments, from the 2005 French Open to the 2007 US Open, and another 6 consecutive Grand Slam tournaments from the 2017 Australian Open to the 2018 French Open. From 2006 to 2008, they played in every French Open and Wimbledon final.

Their 2008 Wimbledon final was lauded as the greatest match ever by many long-time tennis analysts.

Both Federer and Nadal's personal and professional relationship is good-natured and gracious. Though they are both highly competitive, they maintain a healthy regard for each other and have had virtually no source of personal animosity. The two have made slight criticisms of one another in the past, nevertheless. For example, Federer complained of Nadal's slow, deliberate style of play on the eve of the 2008 Wimbledon final. Nadal criticized Federer before the 2012 Australian Open for his failure to be more vocal about players' grievances on issues such as scheduling and prize money. He subsequently apologized for making his views public, however, and both players maintained that they still enjoyed a good relationship and had high respect for each other, which can often be seen in interviews. Nadal was also once seen watching Federer play a match in his box, and their family members would congratulate each other on match wins.

Despite their cordial relationship, both men had a somewhat different attitude towards their rivalry in its initial years. When Federer was securely atop the tennis world he was ambivalent towards the notion of a rivalry with an opponent five years younger than himself. But after their memorable 2008 Wimbledon final he had no choice but to acknowledge its significance, even admitting "it definitely becomes more and more special the more times we play against each other." A few weeks later, after Nadal had officially surpassed him in the rankings, Federer offered this compliment: "Look at what he had to achieve to get it. That's what I like to see." Nadal has always cherished the rivalry because he looks up to Federer as both a role model and a measuring stick for success.

Tags: roland-garros, grand slam, wimbledon, age difference, gentlemen, rivalry, respect - Add tags.

Federer & Nadal
Federer & Nadal