Roger Federer is, without a doubt, the biggest name in the rich history of tennis. So the question as to who has gotten the better of him the most number of times is often on the minds of the fans.
Holding the advantage at 27-23 in over 50 battles, the six-time year-end World No. 1 Novak Djokovic is the answer. The Serbian ace has denied Federer 13 titles of the 19 finals they have played together. This is a tremendous record against arguably the greatest man to have ever held a racquet.
The Djokovic-Federer rivalry has generated some of the most enthralling spectacles in the sport and warmed the hearts of many tennis aficionados. In every match they compete against one another, the pair has produced an ever-lasting memory.
Beginning of Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic rivalry
It began in the first round at the Monte-Carlo Masters in 2006, which Federer won. In fact, the rivalry between the two is a tale of two halves. Interestingly, the Swiss maestro held almost a double lead (13-6) at one point against Djokovic. However, the Serbian surged in the race and brought their rivalry on equal terms (22-22) at the end of 2015.
In 2015, the pair faced each other in seven tournament finals, where Federer managed only one victory. They are also the only two players to have defeated one another in every Grand Slam tournament. Moreover, the pair has faced off in every Masters 1000 competition.
In the 2010 US Open, Djokovic saved four match points in the semifinals to kick-start his domination over the 20-time Major champion. From 2018 to Australian Open 2020, Djokovic has won four out of their five encounters. At the 2019 Wimbledon Championships, they played out the longest Wimbledon final ever. Djokovic triumphed there as well, once again coming back from the very brink.
Read More: How Many French Open Finals Has Roger Federer Played?
Nadal has a better win % against Federer
When touching upon Federer’s rivals, Spain’s Rafael Nadal simply cannot be ignored. Even though the Spaniard dos not have the most victories against his esteemed rival, he does hold a better win percentage.
The Swiss-Spanish rivalry is behind 40 great tennis encounters. Of the 40 encounters, FEDAL have faced each other in a whopping 24 finals and 12 semifinals. Nadal has defeated Federer in 24 of them, which accounts for 60% of the time.
Their most heartbreaking battle came in the finals of the 2009 Australian Open, where Federer broke down after losing the match. However, the respect they have for each other is awe-inspiring and it was on full display that day.
As long as the Big Three do not retire from tennis, we will keep witnessing their great matches unfold. It is indeed a privilege of every tennis fan to see not one but three great champions of the sport in a single era.
At the end of 2020, the Federer-Nadal-Djokovic clan is responsible for 57 of the 69 Grand Slam titles. Only time will tell where that figure will end.