‘He was the idol of Roger Federer’, says former WTA star

The 2022 season is already upon us, despite many tennis players having been involved in the Davis Cup finals until a few weeks ago. 2021 allowed Novak Djokovic to close the gap that separated him from Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in the all-time Grand Slam ranking, having won the Australian Open, Roland Garros and Wimbledon. If he had also triumphed at the US Open, the world number 1 would have become the second man in the Open Era after Rod Laver to win all four majors in the same year. Tension and fatigue played tricks on him in the New York final, not forgetting Daniil Medvedev’s magnificent performance at Arthur Ashe Stadium. The Serbian ended the season at the top of the ATP ranking for the seventh time ever, definitively detaching his idol Pete Sampras. Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal had to settle for a marginal role in 2021, thanks to some physical problems that limited their appearances on the pitch. In a recent conversation on ‘Tennis Majors’, Marion Bartoli spoke at length about the Big 3.

Bartoli talks about the Big 3

“Pete Sampras just inspired generations and generations of players. He was the idol of Roger Federer, of Novak Djokovic, and of so many players because he was just winning,” Bartoli said. “Who cares if you have the personality of Agassi or not?” Bartoli further stressed that it was unfair for players to be judged for their personality, insisting instead that they should be assessed solely on their level of tennis. “It’s entirely false and wrong to judge someone on their personality,” Bartoli said. “You have to judge them on what they’re winning, what they’re able to bring on the court, the tennis level they’re bringing.” Legendary coach Rick Macci recently found renewed worldwide fame after the release of the movie ‘King Richard.’ Once called the ‘coach of prodigies,’ he talks about his old students who went on to be successful in tennis. He also talks about big players, like Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, and their mental attributes. Macci talks about the mental strength of  Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, and Andy Murray have.”What separates great from good?” Macci says. “There’s a lot of people that are good. Great is rare air. That’s a special fraternity. It’s the mental (aspect)- having a crazy work ethic, you gotta have a great footspeed. Look at (Roger) Federer, Nadal, Djokovic, Murray– all these guys can move like Spider-Man and Batman!” Macci exclaims as he talks about their footwork.