Tennis

McEnroe: Federer-Nadal rivalry has years to run

Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer

Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer  

John McEnroe said he expects the rivalry between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal to last at least a few more years before a new face breaks through the top ranks of men’s tennis.

The two players have swept nearly all the Grand Slams and controlled the world No. 1 and No. 2 ranking in recent years. Both players have won all four majors, with Nadal completing his trophy collection by winning the U.S. Open for the first time in September - his third consecutive Grand Slam title after wins at the French Open and Wimbledon.

“There’s no reason to believe ... that these guys aren’t going to be around for the next couple of years,” retired American tennis great McEnroe said.

While Nadal dominated last season to reclaim the No. 1 ranking from his 29-year-old Swiss rival, McEnroe said Federer was still enthusiastic about the game and finished the season on a high note. The 16-time Grand Slam champion beat Nadal - five years his junior - to clinch the season-ending ATP World Tour Finals in London.

“He still seems to love to play. He’s finished the year very strong,” said McEnroe. “We have an incredible rivalry that hopefully will last another couple of years, a year or two more, and we can take advantage of that,” he said.

McEnroe said world No. 3 Novak Djokovic and No. 4 Andy Murray still need to improve to break the Federer-Nadal stranglehold. “They’re going to have to add elements to their games ... and to work harder than ever to try to allow themselves to compete against two of the most - if not the most - talented players that ever played tennis,” he said.

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Printable version | May 31, 2020 11:12:21 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/tennis/McEnroe-Federer-Nadal-rivalry-has-years-to-run/article15506105.ece

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