French sports daily L’Equipe celebrates the 10th anniversary of the Federer-Nadal rivalry (they first met in Miami in 2004, Nadal won in straight sets 6-3 6-3) and at this occasion they published their 5 best mens tennis rivalries. Here’s their ranking (article by L’Equipe, translation by Tennis Buzz):
1. Federer-Nadal (since 2004)
2. Borg-McEnroe (1978-1981)
Fire and ice, ice and fire. You had to choose your side: the steadfast right-handed or the flamboyant left-handed, the inscrutable one and the temperamental one. For many, this rivalry symbolizes the first golden era of tennis. Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe met only 14 times including 4 Grand Slam finals (head-to-head: 7-7), but they played that epic Wimbledon final in 1980 and the tiebreak everyone remembers (18-16 in the fourth set).
(Check out some pics and videos of Borg and McEnroe renewing their rivalry at the Optima Open here)
3. Sampras-Agassi (1989-2002)
Another opposition of styles and personalities. On one side, Sampras offensive game and underdeveloped charism, on the other side, Agassi‘s thousands lifes and looks, his sharp eye and laser-like groundstrokes. Sampras often prevailed (20-14 overall, 4-1 in Grand Slam finals for Sampras), but they played some memorable matches like their 2001 US Open quarterfinal (4 sets, 4 tiebreakers).
(Check out some pics and videos of Agassi and Sampras renewing their rivalry at the World Tennis London Showdown here)
4. Nadal-Djokovic (since 2006)
The classic of the classics (39 meetings) could climb up the rankings because they could play some other memorable matches like the Australian Open 2012 final (5 hours and 53 minutes of play), the 2011 US Open final and the semifinals in Madrid in 2009 and at Roland Garros last year. The decathletes of modern tennis have already played 6 Grand Slam finals against each other (4 wins for the Spaniard).
5. Edberg-Becker (1984-1996)
We could have chosen a more fiercy rivalry (Lendl-McEnroe ou Connors-McEnroe) but we preferred to remember the time when two pure attacking players ruled the world. Edberg opposed a wonderful technical fluidity to Becker‘s power. The German has often had the upper hand (25-10 in their head-to-head) but Edberg won 2 of their 3 Grand Slam finals, all 3 at Wimbledon.
What do you think of this top 5? Personnaly I would vote Borg-McEnroe for top rivalry because of their bigger contrast in styles, personalities and their mythic Wimbledon 1980 final.
Happy to see Edberg-Becker at number five, back in the days I really loved watching them play at Wimbledon.
Please vote and share your thoughts.
After his loss to Thomas Enqvist in the final of the Kings of Tennis tournament in Stockholm, Stefan Edberg flew back to ths US to join Roger Federer at the Miami Masters. Enjoy these pictures of the two tennis greats at practice.
Follow our Miami Sony Open 2014 coverage
Photo credit: Bev
First title of the year for Djokovic, his third Indian Wells title, 42th overall.
I’m just very happy and thrilled to be able to win the first title in this season. It was the first final that I played this year. It was necessary for my confidence, and hopefully I can carry that into Miami and the rest of the season.
A few weeks ago, months ago, a few people said I couldn’t play tennis anymore. So for me, I need to focus on my own game, on my own routines, hard work, make sure I keep a good schedule for myself. But at the same time, that fire, wanting to win, is important and right now I have that. I have a really good balance right now.
Thanks a lot to Josh for sharing his pictures.
Thanks a lot to Remus Baias for sharing these pictures of Roger Federer and Stanislas Wawrinka practising together at Indian Wells. The Swiss stars also played doubles together, they were beaten in the semifinals by Alexander Peya and Bruno Soares.
Photo credit: Remus Baias
Thanks to Love @ll for sharing these pics of Roger Federer and Stefan Edberg.
Want to know more about the Federer-Edberg collaboration, read this article by Tennis Magazine: Former champions: true or false coaches?
Nick Bollettieri signing his new book, Changing the game
Photo credit: Tom Flink