Fedal- A love affair
Rivalry? Are you sure?
It's dusk for the 2017 tennis season. All four Grand Slams are done and dusted, and the two greats of the game have dominated this season like never before, grabbing all the four big prizes of year, also adding a couple of masters on top of it.
Neither of them has lost even a single set while winning the French Open and the Wimbledon. Win percentage for Nadal this year stands at 86.15% and Federer's at 90.1%. While the numbers look staggering as they always have but achieving this at the age of 31 and 36 respectively is what makes these numbers even more unbelievable.
It wasn't easy for me to like Nadal for so long as I am a hardcore Federer fan. In fact, as a kid, I used to hate Nadal, got irritated with his loud shouts, his fist pumps, the arrogance with which he used to hit his shots and above everything else how frequently he was defeating a calm and serene Federer.
But as time passed, as Djokovic and Murray claimed their places to the top, it made me realize how a Nadal is necessary for every "possible" Federer that can ever be in this world and vice versa. Maybe Federer had won a couple of more slams if not for those vicious 5000 rpm topspin forehands, those climbing screamers, but this is what has made him a better player, better than he already was, and this is true for Nadal as well.
And here we all are, Nadal and Federer are on the verge of ending this season with ATP ranking of 1 and 2 respectively. We don't know for how long they can keep going at this level as both of them have struggled with form and injuries in the recent past and also with the advent of next-gen ATP stars it will be really hard to emulate a season like this.
While people are still debating on who's better and arguing their head to head statistics, it's time that we realise that none of them is complete without each other and this sport would have lost so much if not for this 'love affair'.
Everyone has always called this matchup as "THE RIVALRY" but on giving second thought this feels like one of the most beautiful love story that can ever be. A beautiful love affair if I may say.