The GOAT debate has been going on for years and in recent months the issue has been touched on several times by tennis fans. Right now we have three phenomena that have made the history of this sport, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic and all of them in recent years have destroyed any possible record.
In particular, the number one in the world Novak Djokovic has destroyed almost all the records and a few days ago he was awarded as the tennis player who finished the most seasons, no less than seven, in first place in the ATP Ranking, detaching the American Pete Sampras from this record .
The latter spoke about the record to the microphones of the ATP and told him about the eternal debate that has long distinguished all fans of this fantastic sport. Here are his words: "I was the man of records but he was a lot of me.
He has been more continuous, he has won more tournaments and Grand Slams and has finished the season seven times at number one, I don't think he will ever happen again in this sport." The former American tennis player continued: "Tennis is a single sport, it is not a team sport like almost everything else and if you fall you are alone.
Mentally it's tough and not even the coach can tell you what to do.
The players have to be fully trained and I think you have to be born with the attitude of number 1 and Novak was born into it." Chapter GOAT, Pete continues and states: "Finishing the season at the top seven times is something that we will hardly see again and I think it is worth almost like all the Grand Slams won, it is something that I think Nole will appreciate especially at the end of his career.
He achieved these records both against Roger and Rafa and against the next generation. I was very impressed with his transformation and what he has done over the past ten years is incredible. He was a mentally frail young boy and became the best ever, all these results are proof that he is the best ever."
Rosset: "Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal's absences are tough"
The 2021 ATP Finals are now around the corner and yesterday the draw for the two groups (red and green, in honor of the Italian flag) took place.
The big favorite Novak Djokovic happened together with Stefanos Tsitsipas, Andrey Rublev and Casper Ruud, while the number 2 of the seeding Daniil Medvedev will face Alexander Zverev, Matteo Berrettini and Hubert Hurkacz.
Being the first edition in Turin, there is great anticipation among fans and professionals. At the same time, there is no doubt that the absences of Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal take away the appeal of the event, even if the Swiss and the Spaniard are now far from the glories of the past.
The 40-year-old from Basel played the misery of 13 official matches in 2021, before undergoing surgery on his right knee again. Rafa, for his part, was limited to just seven tournaments by a chronic foot injury. During a recent interview with rts.ch, Marc Rosset expressed some strong opinions on the eve of the year-end Masters.
"There are some new faces in this year's edition, which is a positive aspect, but we are far from the appeal and interest that there was at the O2 Arena in London. Hurkacz did very well at Wimbledon, but there is no denying that some of these guys got through to minor tournaments.
People want to see legends like Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray or Stan Wawrinka at the Masters, not guys who have secured their place by playing a myriad of ATP 250s," Rosset ruled. "To be quite honest, I don't remember a less attractive edition of the ATP Finals than the one we are about to live", he added to the dose.
Novak Djokovic and Daniil Medvedev are the only Slam winners present in Turin. "I don't want to disrespect Hurkacz, Ruud or Rublev, but they still achieved too little in the major tournaments. Zverev can no longer postpone his appointment with success in a Grand Slam and the same goes for Tsitsipas. This would give more credit to the event next year," he commented.