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5 amazing similarities between the careers of Federer and Nadal

Bhargav
Nadal (left) and Federer
Nadal (left) and Federer

Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal form two-thirds of men's tennis' most famous triumvirate affectionately called the 'Big 3', with Novak Djokovic being the third part.

With career match win rates north of 80%, Nadal (1st) and Federer (4th) hold two of the four best success rates of any player to have played over 200 singles matches in the Open Era Nadal and Federer also have the most Masters 1000 match wins of any player since the series was conceptualized in 1990.

The two all time leaders of most outdoor titles, Nadal (82) and Federer (77) are at least 12 ahead of the next best tally of 65 (raked in by Djokovic). Moreover, no player has won more titles on the game's three prevalent surfaces of hardcourt (Federer-65), grass (Federer-19) and clay (Nadal-59) than Federer or Nadal.

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Though the duo share one of the most intense rivalries in tennis, they also have a lot of similarities. Here's a look at five amazing similarities between the careers of two of greatest players ever:

#1 Federer and Nadal are the only players to play at least 5 finals at all the 4 Slams

Federer (left) and Nadal
Federer (left) and Nadal

Federer (31) and Nadal (27) have played the most Grand Slam finals in the Open Era. The two are also the only players to have played at least five finals at all the four Grand Slam tournaments.

Federer has played 7 finals at the Australian Open (won 6), 5 at Roland Garros (won 1), 12 at Wimbledon (won 8) and 7 at the US Open (won 5).

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The corresponding numbers for Nadal are 5 at the Australian Open (won 1), 12 at Roland Garros (won 12), 5 at Wimbledon (won 2), and 5 at the US Open (won 4).

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#2 Both Federer and Nadal won their respective 50th Masters 1000 finals

Federer lifted his 28th title in his 50th Masters 1000 final at 2019 Miami
Federer lifted his 28th title in his 50th Masters 1000 final at 2019 Miami

Federer was the first player to arrive at the milestone of 50 Masters 1000 finals, when he reached the 2019 Miami final. The then 37-year-old celebrated the occasion by dethroning defending champion John Isner to win his 28th title in the Masters 1000 Series, in the process also becoming the oldest player to lift a Masters.

All-time Masters 1000 title leader Nadal (35) followed suit shortly, turning around an indifferent start to the 2019 clay season by trumping Novak Djokovic in a three-set final in Rome. The Spaniard's 9th title in the Italian capital was his record-extending 34th in Masters 1000 tournaments, which broke a tie with Djokovic.

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#3 Federer and Nadal have suffered the most tournament final reverses at the hands of Djokovic

Federer (left) and Nadal
Federer (left) and Nadal

No player has beaten Federer and Nadal in as many tournament finals as Djokovic has.

Federer has come up short in 14 of 20 title matches contested against Djokovic, the most recent such instance being 2019 Wimbledon. Federer squandered multiple championship points on serve in that match, before losing in a first-ever fifth-set tiebreak at the grasscourt Major.

Federer's losses to Djokovic in finals include four defeats in Grand Slam finals, three at the ATP Finals, five in Masters 1000 tournaments and two in ATP 500 tournaments.

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Nadal has lost 15 of 26 tournament finals where he has locked horns with Djokovic. The Spaniard has suffered four Grand Slam final reverses, seven Masters 1000 final defeats, two at ATP 500 finals and one apiece at the ATP Finals and ATP 250 tournaments.

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#4 Federer and Nadal are the only players to win over 10 titles at multiple tournaments

Federer (left) and Nadal at the 2019 Laver Cup
Federer (left) and Nadal at the 2019 Laver Cup

Nadal became the first player in the Open Era to win 10 singles titles at a tournament, when he did so at the 2017 Monte Carlo Masters. He went on to repeat the 'La Decima' feat at the Barcelona Open and Roland Garros that same season.

Federer joined his arch-rival and good friend in the exclusive club when he beat David Goffin to lift his 10th title on the grasscourts of Halle. Later in the season, the 37-year-old beat Australian Alex De Minaur to win his own 'La Decima' at his hometown tournament of Halle - which made Federer the only player to win 10 titles at a tournament on two different surfaces.

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#5 Federer and Nadal are the only active players with over 90 match wins at a Grand Slam tournament

Federer (left) and Nadal
Federer (left) and Nadal

Federer became the only player to win 100 matches at a Grand Slam tournament, or for that matter at any tournament, when he beat Japan's Kei Nishikori in the 2019 Wimbledon quarterfinals. If that was not impressive enough, Federer repeated the feat at the 2020 Australian Open after beating John Millman in the third round.

Behind Federer's tallies of 102 wins at the Australian Open and 101 at Wimbledon lies Jimmy Connors, who won 98 matches at the US Open. The next player on the all time list is Nadal, who has 93 match wins at Roland Garros - making him the only active player other than Federer to rake up over 90 match wins at a Major.

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Edited by Musab Abid
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