With Rafel Nadal’s epic win at the Australian Open last month, the Spaniard broke the three-way tie he held with Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer in the race for the most Grand Slam titles, moving ahead with 21 Majors. This also reopened the long-standing debate of who is the greatest player ou of the ‘Big Three’.
Toni Nadal gave a blunt response when asked about who he thinks is the best player. Everyone has different criteria for determining it, but he felt, the player who won the most titles is the best, but in his perspective, the case wouldn’t be the same because Rafa is his nephew.
“The one who has played better in some tournaments, or the one who has played better for a longer time; the one who has had more victories. That is up to everyone’s taste; depending on what you look at, they can be (Roger) Federer, (Novak) Djokovic, or Rafa, who is the one who has won the most Grand Slam titles with less participation. My opinion, in any case, is not valid because he is my nephew, and if I considered that another is the best, I would not say so,” he said in a press conference while discussing the plans for this summer’s ATP 250 event in Mallorca.
Toni Nadal gives his predictions for the upcoming Grand Slams
Toni Nadal was then quizzed about the possibility of Rafael Nadal going down in history as the player with the most Grand Slam titles, following his latest win at the Australian Open. He answered that he hoped it was the case but with age catching up with the trio (Nadal, Federer, and Djokovic), there is still a lot of uncertainty over whether their dominance will continue and with the new crop of players catching up it might be tough for the ‘Big Three’ to add another Major to their tally.
However, he gave his predictions for the upcoming Grand Slams and said that Djokovic is the favorite to win Wimbledon this year and Rafa at the Roland Garros. He further added that there was no clear favorite for the US Open. The last Slam of the year has been the weak point for the trio over the years.
In the last 13 years, the ‘Big Three’ have won the title at Flushing Meadows 7 times, which is still a staggering record but seems diminutive to the dominance they displayed in the Australian Open, Wimbledon, and French Open, winning an astonishing 34 titles of the 38 that took place during the same period.
He said: “I have no idea, I wish it were. Djokovic, a priori, is the top favorite to win (this year) at Wimbledon, at Roland Garros, I hope it will be Rafael and at the US Open I don’t know; it may or may not be enough. The reality is that it is increasingly difficult to win a Grand Slam because of the age that the three of them are getting (Federer, Djokovic, and Nadal) and because of the people who come from below.”