Swiss tennis ace Roger Federer believes future generations can upstage the record he and fellow ‘Big 3’ members Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic have set.
Messrs Federer, Nadal and Djokovic currently share the all-time record of 20 Grand Slam singles titles won.
Federer first became the all-time major leader when he reached 15 in 2009 – surpassing American great Pete Sampras who held the record for 14.
Nadal and Djokovic have caught up with Federer in recent times, with the trio dominating men’s tennis for the best part of the past 15 years.
This has led many to believe that their records will never be topped, but Federer disagrees.
In an interview with GQ, Federer was probed on whether he felt there will be a similar dominant era in future.
He responded: “I think yes. I feel like nowadays – and this is not to take anything away from Rafa, Novak or myself, for that matter – but, you know, I feel like it’s easier to dominate through the different surfaces nowadays.
“Back in the day, yes, we did have three grass-court events, but maybe the margins were slimmer. I feel like there were hard-court players, clay-court players and there weren’t so many players who could play on all surfaces.
“Sure, (Bjorn) Borg did it, but things were different. Players weren’t chasing one Slam after another like they are today and record after record. Nowadays such a strategy is much more part of your career. So, yes, a new, incredible player will, I believe, break our run of 20 Grand Slams eventually -but not overnight!”
The 40-year-old Federer has shut down his 2021 season as he recovers from knee surgery but he’s eager to return to the tour in 2022.
He was in attendance at the Laver Cup in Boston this past weekend where he said he would not be rushing back to the game too soon.
“Now I’ve just got to take it step by step,” Federer told the ATP Tour. “I’ve got to first walk again properly, run properly and then do the sidesteps and all the agility work and then eventually I’ve got to be back on the tennis court. But it’s going to take me a few more months and then we’ll see how things are at some point next year.
“I’ve got to take my time. I don’t want to rush into anything at this point. This is also for my life. I want to make sure I can do everything I want to do later on. There’s no rush with anything, so I’m actually in a really good place. I think the worst is behind me.
“I took the time and, I don’t know, I’m just really in a good place. I’m really happy.”
Picture: Roger Federer – Laver Cup/Twitter