Currently, the agent of his younger brother Alexander Zverev, former World No. 25 Mischa Zverev recently made a bold claim on the new generation of players overtaking the tennis scene. With the average age of players at the 2021 ATP Finals being less than 25 given the presence of the 34-year old Novak Djokovic, Mischa believes a new quartet of the Big-4 is coming up.
The Big-4 name was originally given to the group of Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray and Djokovic during their reign of dominance in the decade of 2010s. These 4 players dominated the majors and other tournaments massively as, during the decade, all 4 became World No. 1 and won all the Slams during the decade except on 3 occasions with Stan Wawrinka winning two and Marin Cilic winning once.
However, with repeated injuries to Murray and Federer, the quartet has played very few tournaments together and with the new generation of players coming in, there has been a good competition to the veterans.
“From my point of view, the new Big 4 is made up of Djokovic, Medvedev, Sascha and Tsitsipas. It’s just my feeling. This can, of course, always change. Do not forget Tsitsipas in this list, he was incredibly strong during the first half of the year. I also think that someone like Rublev can annoy other players.
“We also have to wait and see how things turn out with Nadal over the coming year. Is he coming back or not? How does he play the season on clay?” said Mischa Zverev.
Novak Djokovic keeps the Big-4 flag flying high
While Murray and Federer have missed quite a lot of action, Novak has stepped up massively and made a strong charge to get to the 20 Grand Slam mark matching Federer and Nadal’s tally. In the 2020 season, Djokovic won the Australian Open while Nadal got hold of the French Open yet again. With the Wimbledon cancelled due to the pandemic, at the US Open, Dominic Thiem became the first player born in the 1990s to win a Slam.
Djokovic started the 2021 season with 17 Slams to his name and ended with 20 as he won all the Slams except the 2021 US Open where he finished runner-up to Daniil Medvedev, who became just the 4th player to win a Grand Slam title other than the original Big-4.