The contribution of the ‘Big 3’ to the tennis fraternity for the last two decades has been immense. Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic have won 58 out of 66 grand slams among themselves since Wimbledon 2003. They have walked in as the outright favorite for every grand slam they have competed since 2004.
But with age, they seem more and more vulnerable. Young champions in Dominic Thiem, Daniil Medvedev, Alexander Zverev and more have shown the world that the Big 3 could be defeated. This Clay season, Novak Djokovic was defeated by Dan Evans and Aslan Karatsev in successive tournaments.
As for Nadal is considered, he was defeated by Andrey Rublev in Monte Carlo and Alexander Zverev in Madrid. Zverev also became only the third player to defeat Nadal on Clay, Federer on Grass and Djokovic on hards.
Novak Djokovic certain about change but doesn’t know when to expect it
Before the Rome Masters, Novak Djokovic shared his thoughts about the NextGen. He said that players like Thiem, Zverev and Tsitsipas are defeating the Big 3 consistently now and the changeover could come anytime soon.
He said: “Tsitsipas, Zverev, Berrettini, Rublev, Medvedev, Thiem, they are playing a lot and winning against us. Change is coming, it is inevitable. Will it happen in a month or a year, I don’t know.”
The top seed at Rome will open his campaign against American Taylor Fritz in the second round at Foro Italico on Tuesday. The duo also met at Australian Open earlier this year where Djokovic prevailed in 5 sets.