Novak Djokovic Jumps Past Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer to Create History at French Open 2021

Published 06/05/2021, 9:50 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)


Novak Djokovic has been a consistent force since the last decade. And now, he has a record at the French Open that will be hard even for the King, Rafael Nadal, to break. Djokovic reached the fourth round of the French Open yet again for a record 12th consecutive time by beating Ricardas Berankis in the third round.

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The World No.1 and top seed at French Open 2021, Djokovic will now make a record-breaking 12th consecutive fourth-round appearance at Roland Garros after beating Berankis, 6-1, 6-4, 6-1. Before his third-round clash, he was tied on 11 consecutive fourth-round appearances with Nadal and Federer.

Novak Djokovic celebrates after winning. REUTERS/Sarah Meyssonnier

This tremendous record only further indicates how consistent Djokovic has been over the years. This record will be far from Nadal’s reach as his current streak is on four. To level Djokovic’s record, the Spaniard will have to play for eight more years which will be well into his forties. And as physically fit as the Spaniard is, this may prove to be too much of a stretch even for him.

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Djokovic’s run started in 2010 when he reached the quarterfinal stage. From then on, he has had three quarterfinal finishes, three semifinal finishes, three final finishes, with one solitary win in 2016. It is during this period he defeated Nadal at Roland Garros in 2015 and completed the ‘Nole Slam’ in 2016 where he held all four Grand Slams at the same time.

Watch this story: Champions!: Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Serena Williams, And Others’ Trophy Lift at French Open

Rafael Nadal in action at French Open 2021. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

Where do Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer rank behind Novak Djokovic in this record?

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Nadal had achieved 11 consecutive fourth-round appearances from 2005 to 2015. During that period he won nine titles and suffered his first-ever loss at Roland Garros against Robin Soderling in 2009. His run was ended in 2016 after he withdrew before his third-round match because of an injury.

Federer also got 11 consecutive fourth-round appearances from 2005 to 2015. And during this period, Federer won his only French Open title in 2009 and lost four finals to Nadal. Federer’s run ended in 2016 after he didn’t participate in the Grand Slam that year.

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This is another Grand Slam record dominated by the ‘big 3’. And this time, Djokovic has edged his rivals. At French Open 2021, Djokovic, Federer, Nadal are all on the same side. The Serbian could face Federer first in the quarterfinal and then face Nadal in the semifinal.

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Bhavishya Mittal

1226 articles

Bhavishya Mittal is a tennis author for EssentiallySports, who is currently pursuing his Bachelor's degree in Journalism from Manipal University. A former sports editor for The Manipal Journal, Bhavishya has also worked for The New Indian Express. He has a keen eye for many sports but he is a particularly ardent follower of tennis, with a zest to create riveting articles on the ever-evolving sport.

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