Sports lovers have a way of looking back and remembering the old days.
In 2006, 2007 and 2008, Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal met for three successive championship finals at Wimbledon. Each of these games has been more threatened than the previous one, while the 2008 showdown was often regarded as the best game ever played.
For almost a decade since the last meeting, tennis fans, analysts and surely the players themselves wonder if a meeting on the central court is too much to wait for.
This year, 11 years after that first final when Federer was established grass leader and Nadal during his cocky challenger, the old rivals have convened to meet again in the afternoon of July 16 to compete in the singles of the Knights of the Trophy of this year.
While Federer and Nadal would be the first to remind everyone that there is a long way to go before it actually happens, that is not even a possibility demonstrates what we suspected all year long. 2017 is a year of miracles tennis. Because he saw a remarkable double return, unexpected and comforting by two of the best tennis players in the world.
Federer and Nadal faced injuries last year, missed much of the season and watched helplessly, while their rankings dropped out of the top 10. When the new season started early this time of year Rafa and Roger seem to have already gone well One Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray seemed to be on the rise.
To this is added the wins of the Grand Slam mix Stan Wawrinka, and the youngest and funniest brigadier players such as Alexander Zverev, Milos Raonic, Dominic Thiem and Nick Kyrigos, and you could be forgiven for the wish that you had The less opportunity to say goodbye to two veterans who were suddenly anywhere on the scene.
Then, suddenly, we were in Australia, and the unthinkable happened. When Federer, 35, and Nadal, 31, reached the “Final Dream” in January, was surreal. They say the truth, was considered to be a little smarter. Only it was not.
Since that game, Federer won, both men have dominated the world of tennis. The Swiss destroyed the first three months of the year, winning 19 of their 20 matches, followed by the Australian Open win with two ATP Masters Series hard-court titles at Indian Wells and Miami. In both cases, he defeated his former nemesis, Nadal, who had seemed invincible instead.
The Spanish, however, has not had a bad year. In honor in Melbourne and Miami, Rafa rolled through his beloved clay courts, winning in Monte Carlo, Barcelona and Madrid, before crowning his achievements at the French Open.
If Federer added to his record of Grand Slam titles by winning the number 18, while Nadal became the first to win 10 times. Nadal and Federer were top in the standings to reach an impressive two and four respectively. And, of course, these people lead the ATP race for the year-end tournament in London.
The two men have had phenomenal seasons by any measure. But it’s his age and the injuries he suffered last year, making his joint impact so incredible. Suddenly, we are back to the age of Rafa and Roger. How did this happen?