3 players Federer has met the most times on clay, hardcourt, grass, and carpet

Roger Federer.
Roger Federer.

Roger Federer is one of the most successful players in men's tennis. The only player to win matches in 4 different decades, doing so by winning his first round match against American Steve Johnson at the 2020 Australian Open, Federer is has claimed 20 Grand Slam titles and has won 362 Grand Slam matches,numbers unsurpassed by anyone else.

Federer became the only player to win 10 titles at a tournament on two different surfaces when he followed up his 'La Decima' on the grasscourts of Halle earlier in the season with another 'La Decima' at his hometown tournament in Basel in 2019.

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The 38-year-old narrowly failed to become the oldest player to lift a Grand Slam title in the Open Era when he squandered consecutive championship points on serve in the 2019 Wimbledon final against Novak Djokovic before going down to the Serb in the first-ever match at the grasscourt major to feature a fifth-set tiebreak. It marked the third time Federer failed to win a match against Djokovic after having match points, having failed to close out victories in the 2010-11 US Open semifinals.

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Federer's 103 singles titles and 1242 match wins are only surpassed by American Jimmy Connors (109 singles titles and 1274 match wins). The 20-time Grand Slam champion is one of the few active players who have played on all four surfaces of the game - clay, hardcourt, grass, and carpet (not used since 2009). On that note, let us have a look a three players whom Federer has faced the most times on all four surfaces.

#3. Andy Roddick (21-3)

Federer and Roddick (right) met for the last time in the 2012 Miami second round
Federer and Roddick (right) met for the last time in the 2012 Miami second round

Andy Roddick is one of 17 players Federer has faced on clay, hardcourt, grass, and carpet.

It was a rivalry which was heavily dominated by Federer, who won 21 of the pair's 24 matches which spanned 4 Grand Slam finals, 2 Masters 1000 finals, and an ATP 250 final, all won by the Swiss.

In their only meeting on clay, Federer beat Roddick in three sets in the quarterfinals of the 2009 Madrid Masters while their 2 meetings on carpet happened in the quarterfinals at 2001-02 Basel. The 20-time Grand Slam champion was also perfect against Roddick in his 4 matches with his American rival on grass, winning the semifinals at Wimbledon in 2003 and title matches at the grasscourt major in 2004-05 and 2009.

On hardcourt, Roddick had his 3 wins over Federer in 17 matches on the surface. The American was victorious in a third-set tiebreak at the 2003 Coupe Rogers semifinals, 2008 Miami quarterfinals, and the pair's last meeting in the second round at 2012 Miami.

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#2.Tomas Berdych (20-6)

Berdych (left) and Federer met for the last time in the 2018 Australian Open quarterfinals
Berdych (left) and Federer met for the last time in the 2018 Australian Open quarterfinals

Tomas Berdych is one of 4 players Federer has beaten at least 20 times on tour, the others being Stanislas Wawrinka (23), Novak Djokovic (23), and Andy Roddick (21).

Unlike Wawrinka and Djokovic, Federer has met the tall Czech on all the four surfaces of the game, winning 8 consecutive matches after losing their first meeting on tour in the third round of the 2004 Athens Olympics.

Berdych is one of eight players to have beaten Federer multiple times at Grand Slam tournaments, beating the then 6-time champion in the 2011 Wimbledon quarterfinals en route to his only Grand Slam final appearance where he lost to Nadal, and then becoming the first player to beat Federer in a night-match on Arthur Ashe at the 2012 US Open.

Federer has won all 4 of his matches against Berdych on clay - 2005 Hamburg first round, 2006 Roland Garros fourth round, 2012 Madrid Masters final, and 2015 Rome Masters quarterfinals. The pair's lone meeting on carpet happened in a 2007 Davis Cup tie between Switzerland and Czech Republic in Prague which Federer won in straight sets.

On grass, Federer is 3-1 against Berdych, beating the Czech in the 2006 Halle final, 2006 Wimbledon fourth round, and 2017 Wimbledon semifinals, all 3 times without dropping a set. It was on hardcourt where Berdych had the bulk of his success against Federer, beating the Swiss maestro 5 times in 17 meetings on the surface.

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#1. Lleyton Hewitt (18-9)

Federer lost to Hewitt (right) in the 2014 Brisbane final.
Federer lost to Hewitt (right) in the 2014 Brisbane final.

Lleyton Hewitt dominated his early rivalry with Federer, beating the Swiss in the pair's first 3 meetings and taking a 7-2 lead in their head-to-head rivalry before the 20-time Grand Slam champion reeled off 15 consecutive wins from the 2004 Australian Open fourth round to the 2010 Australian Open fourth round.

Federer famously double-bagelled the Australian in the 2004 US Open final for his first title at the tournament and holds a 3-2 lead against Hewitt in tournament finals, losing the pair's two such matches at 2010 Halle and 2014 Brisbane.

3 of Hewitt's 9 wins over Federer have come on carpet - 1999 Lyon, 2000 Davis Cup, and 2001 Paris-Bercy, with Federer enjoying his sole win on the surface against the Australian in the 2000 Basel semifinals. The 38-year-old won the pair's lone claycourt meeting in the semifinals of the 2004 Hamburg Masters.

Federer is 4-2 against Hewitt on grass, winning quarterfinal, semifinal, and fourth-round matches at Wimbledon in 2004, 2005, and 2008 respectively, and another win coming in a 2011 Davis Cup tie between Australia and Switzerland in Sydney which Federer won in four sets after losing the opener.

On hardcourt, Hewitt had his most success against Federer, beating his Swiss rival 4 times in 12 matches, which includes a win in the pair's last tour meeting in the final of the 2014 Brisbane Open.

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Edited by S Chowdhury


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