‘They Are a Big Problem…’- Frances Tiafoe Blames Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Novak Djokovic for the Lack of Success for Next Gen at Grand Slams

Published 08/06/2022, 5:50 AM EDT
Novak Djokovic of Serbia, Rafael Nadal of Spain and Roger Federer of Switzerlan wait to go on stage during the ATP Heritage Celebration at The Waldorf=Astoria on in New York City. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

The Big 3 have dominated men’s tennis for more than two decades now. Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, and Rafael Nadal have clinched a whopping 63 Grand Slam titles over the past two decades.

In a recent interview, Frances Tiafoe expressed his concern over the lack of American Grand Slam champion in the men’s circuit. His claim surprised many as he put the blame on some of the most successful players in the history of the sport.


Article continues below this ad

Frances Tiafoe blames Novak Djokovic, Rafael, and Roger Federer for the lack of American US Open champions

Tiafoe attributed the ‘Big 3’ for the absence of US Open champions from the United States. He said, “I don’t think it’s a flag issue.”

He named the players responsible for this jokingly and stated, “I think it’s a Novak, Rafa, Federer issue. I think they are a big problem for everyone.”

LONDON, ENGLAND – NOVEMBER 21: (L-R) Andy Murray of Great Britain, Novak Djokovic of Siberia, Roger Federer of Switzerland and Rafael Nadal of Spain attend a ceremony for Carlos Moya’s retirement during the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals at O2 Arena on November 21, 2010 in London, England. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

Furthermore, he saw hope in the near future for an American player to achieve the feat. Tiafoe said, “I think we are all playing some great tennis. It’s only a matter of time. I mean, draws are opening up more and more.”

WATCH THIS STORY: Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Serena Williams, and Others In The Greatest Comebacks in Tennis

With hope, he concluded, “I see someone making semi, final, maybe winning one next couple of years. Why not?” The US has not had a male Grand Slam winner since 2003, when Andy Roddick won his first and only US Open title.

Who are some American players with the potential to win the US Open?


Article continues below this ad

Tiafoe himself is a huge contender for the position. He has reached the quarterfinals of the Australian Open once in 2019. Other than that, the player has not fared well in the other Grand Slam titles.

Mar 20, 2022; Indian Wells, CA, USA; Taylor Fritz (USA) holds the championship trophy after defeating Rafael Nadal (ESP) in the men’s final at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Other than him, we have Taylor Fritz, who defeated Rafael Nadal in the finals of the Indian Wells Masters this year. Moreover, he also put up a good fight against the Spaniard in the quarter-finals of Wimbledon and extended the match to five sets. He has two titles this year, from Indian Wells as well as Eastbourne International.


Article continues below this ad

On the contrary, American women at the US Open have maintained a good record, thanks to Serena Williams. The 23-time Grand Slam champion won her last US Open in 2014, clinching her sixth US Open title, and made it to the finals as recently as 2018. She will try to win her 24th grand slam title and seventh US Open title this year in the upcoming hard court major.



Shivali Sharma

388 articles

Shivali Sharma is a tennis author at EssentiallySports. She has pursued her Master's in history from Himachal University, but her love for the game has driven her to write about tennis. Shivali is a huge fan of Naomi Osaka and admires Osaka not only for her on-court performances, but also for her off-court actions.