Top 3 men's singles tennis players of the present era

The Big Three are back on top of the ATP rankings
The Big Three are back on top of the ATP rankings
Arpit Srivastava

This has been an everlasting tale. Champions aren't made in a day and aren't written off that fast either.

We've been bearing witness to this very fact for over the course of more than a decade. The magical trio of Federer, Nadal and Djokovic has been relentless in their pursuit of tennis glory and fame. After his US Open win, Novak joins the other two members of the Big Three at the top of the pile for the first time since April 2015.

With Roger re-inventing himself year after year, Nadal reincarnating himself at every French Open and Djokovic returning back from injury to win Wimbledon and US Open, these three still rule the roost.

Probably this trio is the best ever set of players to compete together for an extended period of time. Roger and Novak both own the grass and Rafa owns the clay. All three of them stand on equal footing when to comes to hard court tennis, although some tennis pundits might argue that Novak has the slightest edge over his rivals on hard courts.

These men have won 51 grand slams among them in a space of 15 years, which is actually 85% of the titles. The only other men to have won multiple grand slam titles during this period are Andy Murray (3) and Stan Wawrinka (3).

The best characteristic about the trio is that each of them is unique in their persona and style of play. Let's try to analyze special traits for all of them.

Roger Federer

The closest to the term GOAT (Greatest of All Time) holding 20 grand slams, the name itself radiates class and confidence. With an old-school one-handed backhand technique, he waves the racquet like a magic wand. He has made us all smile and cry at the same time along with him.

Towards the latter stage of his career, he has changed his game technique a bit. The backhand that used to fail him against his most ferocious opponents, is no longer as much of a weakness as before.

He's started using a lighter racket but still enthrals the spectators and even his opponents with his mystique. His success and gameplay have inspired many to pick up the tennis racket.

Federer with the WImbledon Trophy
Federer with the Wimbledon trophy
Nadal with the French Open trophy
Nadal with the French Open trophy

Rafael Nadal

In the tennis world; the never-say-day attitude instantly resonates with one man in particular-Rafael Nadal. The Spaniard plays every single point as if he's playing his last. He's known to pull of winners from the unlikeliest of court positions.

Whenever Federer looked to be invincible, Nadal always managed to make him look more human. He is one of only two players to have a winning head-to-head against Federer, the other being Djokovic. He has been called "the best competitor on court" by many of the tennis greats.

Nadal uses a lot of topspin on his forehand, making it one of his best weapons. He thrives on clay and is widely recognized as 'the king of clay'. He belongs to Spain but rules France (winning 11 French Opens in the last 15 years).

Nadal is 32 now. He has at least 2-3 more years of tennis in him and is certainly a contender to win many more slams.

Djokovic after winning the 2018 US Open
Djokovic after winning the 2018 US Open

Novak Djokovic

'The Djoker' as they call him is a blend of Federer's class and Nadal's aggression. He leads Nadal 27-25 and Federer 24-22, making him the only player to have a positive head-to-head against both Nadal and Federer. He's widely considered to be the most complete tennis player ever. His two-handed backhand is considered to be the best in the game.

He's also the only male tennis player to have held all four grand slams at the same time since Rod Laver did it back in 1969. He's the only player to have won all nine Masters 1000 tournaments, which in itself shows how adaptable his game is.

Djokovic has always produced great quality matches against his fiercest opponents. After suffering an elbow injury in 2017, he had to take a break from tennis. He is back in the groove now and competing at his best, having won 2 slams this year.

With 14 grand slams under his belt and age on his side, we can surely expect the Serbian to win many more slams.

Edited by Jilin Cherian


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