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“If Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic Hadn’t Been Here…”: Roger Federer Answers the Question

World No.3 Roger Federer admits that Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic have made him a better player but refuted the suggestion that the two made him the player he is now.

In an interview with Clarin, ahead of his exhibition match in Buenos Aires, Roger Federer was asked whether he would have been Federer without his arch-rivals, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.

The Swiss maestro explained that if Nadal and Djokovic would not have been there then someone would have been there instead of them and someone else would have been there if he wouldn’t have been there.

“I think that if they hadn’t been here, someone else would have taken that place. And if I hadn’t been, someone else would have been for me. So, in the end, they made me a better player, without a doubt, but if I had won or lost more without them nobody knows. It is written in the stars,” Roger Federer replied.

The 20-time Grand Slam champion explicated that he has huge respect for Nadal and Djokovic but he believes that without them, he would still have a good career.

He concluded: “They are amazing, very hard, and I respect them incredibly. But I do believe that apart from them I would have had a good career when I realized that I could awaken my potential through hard work.”

The Basel native has an inferior head-to-head record against Rafael Nadal (16-24) and Novak Djokovic (23-26). Furthermore, Roger Federer has been defeated by Nadal or Djokovic 20 times in the semifinals or finals of a grand slam tournament.

Roger Federer has flown out to Buenos Aires for his exhibition tour of South America and North America. The 38-year-old will face Alexander Zverev in the five exhibition matches across five cities in the next seven days, starting with Buenos Aires.

Earlier, Roger Federer was stunned by the eventual champion Stefanos Tsitsipas in the semifinals of last week’s ATP World Tour Finals 2019.

Varun Khanna

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