With the top three slowing down and exciting new prospects entering the scene – grand slam tennis looks set to have a new generation of champions… or will it?
No one can say for sure what the future of tennis will look like, but let’s look back at this year’s results and see how things in 2021 might play out. And if you’re feeling confident by the end of this article, check out OLBG’s list of free wages and waging offers and try your luck.
The Big Three
Any fan of tennis will know the names of the “Big Three” – Nadal, Djokovic, and Federer. In fact, anyone who takes an interest in sport will have heard of these names.
For the past 17 years, they have dominated professional tennis, winning a total of 57 out of 69 grand slams between them. Even as they enter their mid to late thirties, they are all still at the top of their game.
With father time robbing them of their speed, their technical abilities only seem to grow stronger.
Nadal shows no sign of giving up his top three spot, regardless of his history of injuries. He remains confident that he can continue to compete for Grand Slam silverware.
Nadal finished the 2020 season second in the world rankings behind Djokovic and hopes to retain this spot or overtake his long-time rival.
As for Djokovic, we don’t see the number one ranked Serbian superstar slowing down either. After defending his Australian Open title for a second time and going 13-0 in the competition, he’s likely to keep his momentum coming into 2021.
To add to his excellent run throughout 2020, Djokovic also dominated the ATP tour, beating Nadal in the final. And in 2021, he hopes to overtake Federer’s record for longest time spent at the number one spot.
As regards to Federer, we are still waiting for his return after his double knee surgery, which has left his return to the Australian Open in doubt.
Speaking to reporters earlier year, Federer stated that he had hoped to be fit by October – but that didn’t pan out, and he is still not feeling 100% healthy.
The Australian Open is due to take place between 8-21st of February, so we will have to wait and see who will win it as Federer has decided not to play.
At the age of 39 and with a trophy cabinet that could rival the top athletes in any sport. It may not be the worst idea for Federer to put down his racket for the final time.
But who knows. Federer shocked the world in 2017 when he made a shock return to win both the Australian Open and Wimbledon, five weeks after knee surgery. This is an outstanding achievement when you consider he beat Nadal in both finals!
The next generation
As with any sport, new athletes are starting to come through in the hopes of deposing the old guard.
This will always be the case, but it seems strange and uncomfortable to consider watching a grand slam and not see one of the big three lift the trophy.
Young Austrian superstar Dominic Thiem made a name for himself in 2020 when he won the US Open, defeating Germany’s Alexander Zverev, 3 sets to 2.
This wasn’t the first time Thiem made it into a Grand Slam final. At the beginning of 2020, he reached the Australian Open final, where he lost to Djokovic by 3 sets to 2. And in 2018 and 2019, he faced Nadal twice at the French Open, losing both times.
American tennis player and former junior Wimbledon champion Noah Rubin believes that Thiem is a top-three contender going into 2021. And with Federer currently side-lined, Rubin believes Thiem has a good chance of taking on Djokovic for the number one spot.