“I think when you compete you can walk away and realise it’s just sports at the end of the day,” the newly-retired star said, as the 21-time Grand Slam winner added: “As Roger said, co-existing in this environment with respect and admiration for each other that I feel like we can all do.”
Earlier in the week, Nadal said that beyond being part of a rivalry with Federer he was even “happier to finish our career like friends after everything we shared on court like rivals”. While there can often be a divide among the fans of the Big Three, the players themselves have proven that there is no animosity between them.
While the three men will continue to be the subject of the ongoing GOAT battle, Federer’s retirement itself has shown that the records aren’t everything as even his biggest rivals called him one of the greatest players ever over the course of the weekend. And with three players great at such different things – Federer known for his beautiful game style, Nadal for his intensity, Djokovic for being so solid – maybe we can be boring and call it a tie between the Big Three when it comes to the absolute best in men’s tennis.