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Novak Djokovic vs. Rafael Nadal vs. Roger Federer: career records and grand slams

Who is the ‘GOAT’ of men’s tennis? We look at the records of the ‘big three’

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The ‘GOAT’ debate

Tennis fans will argue for hours debating the following question: which male player is the greatest of all time (GOAT)? Icons such as Björn Borg, Pete Sampras, John McEnroe and Jimmy Connors get a special mention in the “GOAT” discussion, but for many people it’s a choice of one of the “big three”.

After his victory at Wimbledon in 2021 Novak Djokovic joined Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal on 20 career grand slam wins. Djokovic has dominated on Melbourne’s hard courts with nine of his 20 slams coming in Australia. Nadal is the all-time “king of clay” with 13 French Open victories out of his 20. And Federer has eight wins on grass at Wimbledon from his collection of 20 slams. 

In terms of “big titles” – victories in a grand slam, ATP Finals, ATP Masters 1000 tournament, or an Olympic singles gold medal – Djokovic leads his rivals. After his win in the Rolex Paris Masters in November, Djokovic has 62 big titles compared to Nadal’s 57 and Federer’s 54.

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Novak Djokovic won the Rolex Paris Masters in November 2021

Novak Djokovic won the 2021 Rolex Paris Masters

Tnani Badreddine/ATP Images/Getty Images

Novak Djokovic 

  • Nationality: Serbian 
  • Age: 34 
  • World ranking:
  • Career titles: 86 
  • Grand slam titles: 20 (9 x Australian Open: 2008, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2019, 2020, 2021; 2 x French Open: 2016, 2021; 6 x Wimbledon: 2011, 2014, 2015, 2018, 2019, 2021; 3 x US Open: 2011, 2015, 2018) 
  • Big titles: 62 (20 grand slams; 5 ATP finals; 37 ATP Masters 1000 titles) 
  • Olympic medals: singles bronze at Beijing 2008

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Rafael Nadal beat Novak Djokovic in the final of the 2021 Italian Open

Rafael Nadal beat Novak Djokovic in the 2021 Italian Open final

Filippo Monteforte/AFP via Getty Images

Rafael Nadal 

  • Nationality: Spanish 
  • Age: 35 
  • World ranking: 6
  • Career titles: 88 
  • Grand slam titles: 20 (1 x Australian Open: 2009; 13 x French Open: 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020; 2 x Wimbledon: 2008, 2010; 4 x US Open: 2010, 2013, 2017, 2019) 
  • Big titles: 57 (20 grand slams; 36 ATP Masters 1000 titles; 1 Olympics singles) 
  • Olympic medals: singles gold at Beijing 2008; men’s doubles gold at Rio 2016

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Roger Federer is an eight-time Wimbledon champion

Roger Federer is an eight-time Wimbledon champion

Julian Finney/Getty Images

Roger Federer 

  • Nationality: Swiss 
  • Age: 40 
  • World ranking: 16
  • Career titles: 103 
  • Grand slam titles: 20 (6 x Australian Open: 2004, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2017, 2018; 1 x French Open: 2009; 8 x Wimbledon: 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012, 2017; 5 x US Open: 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008) 
  • Big titles: 54 (20 grand slams; 6 ATP Finals; 28 ATP Masters 1000 titles) 
  • Olympic medals: singles silver at London 2012; men’s doubles gold at Beijing 2008

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2022 grand slam dates

Australian Open
  • When: 17-30 January 
  • Where: Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia 
Roland-Garros French Open
  • When: 16 May to 5 June 
  • Where: Stade Roland-Garros, Paris, France
The Championships Wimbledon
  • When: 27 June to 10 July 
  • Where: All England Lawn Tennis & Croquet Club, London, England 
US Open
  • When: 28 August to 11 September
  • Where: USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, New York, US

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