It seems like we ask the same question of men’s tennis every time a new year comes around, which is, of course, a testament to the most incredible era of tennis we have ever been privileged to see.
But now that 2020 is here, it’s worth revisiting the question to see if indeed there is any sign whatsoever of the Big Three letting up – and perhaps if a certain Scot can join tennis’ top table once more? Let’s delve in and have a look.
At 38 years old, you’re left thinking that Roger Federer’s body won’t be able to stand up to the rigours of professional tennis anymore, but it’s probably time to admit that the only instance where Federer won’t be competing at the very top is when he retires. Up until that day, Federer will be winning titles, whether it be Grand Slams or regular ATP tour ones, the Fed will go into his retirement as a recent winner once he decides to call it a day.
BASEL 😭 🏆 pic.twitter.com/n8kYXYTtBr
— Roger Federer (@rogerfederer) October 28, 2019
Indeed, many players stop playing because the wins dry up but as far as Roger Federer goes, that is unlikely to ever be the case. That’s not to say he will retire with nothing left to prove given the state of the Grand Slam title race.
Both Rafa Nadal and Novak Djokovic added to their respective Grand Slam tallies in 2019 by sharing the four majors amongst them, both winning two. So with that in mind, it’s not hard to imagine an extremely motivated Federer going all out to stop his two fiercest rivals like he almost succeeded in doing at Wimbledon 2019 only to agonizingly lose to Djokovic, after serving for the match during a tie-break.
That indeed was a valiant attempt by Federer but if you were to take a step back and have a look at the bigger picture, you’d see Nadal and Djokovic have shared the last seven Grand Slams. That would suggest it’s becoming ever more so difficult for the 38-year-old Federer to break the hold the Spaniard and Serb have on world tennis. Unfortunately for the Swiss legend, the going doesn’t seem to get any easier for him when you look at the latest tennis odds for the Australian Open; both Djokovic and Nadal are at better odds to win down under.
But let’s quickly talk about a guy who is at odds of 25/1 to win at the Rod Laver Arena, Andy Murray. The 32-year-old Scot is on the comeback trail and even won the European Open in October after beating Stan Wawrinka. With three Grand Slam titles and the only man to halt the charge of the Big Three, albeit, temporarily, all eyes will turn to Murray to spring an upset.
— Andy Murray (@andy_murray) October 20, 2019
In reality, if there is any changing of the guard in 2020 it will be because Murray has disrupted the status quo, which has to be the conclusion when you consider how well Djokovic and Nadal are going.
So to answer the initial question asked; it should be very much business as usual for two of the Big Three in 2020 with the challenge to come from Murray and Federer. Basically, 2020 won’t be the year where we see any drop off in domination from the men that have bossed tennis for so long.