Roger Federer has gotten the better of Rafael Nadal in their last meeting, winning seven of their last eight encounters, starting with the 2015 Swiss Open final in Basel and ending with a semi-final clash at Wimbledon in 2019.
Overall, in their career, the pair have faced each other 40 times, with the Spaniard having a healthy 24-16 lead in the head-to-head record.
Federer’s coach Ivan Ljubicic speaking on the latest episode of The Tennis Podcast, spoke about his pupil’s improvement against Nadal and the reasons behind it. The Croatian believes the 2017 Australian Open final was a turning point in their clashes.
“I think obviously that game in Australia changed his way of living Rafa, I think. I think after that game he felt more and more confident that he had it on his racquet, which was not the case against Rafa who had fought many times before that,” he expressed, adding, “And so, I think after that game he believed in it more and he played, you know, tactically also a bit different.”
While Nadal’s last victory against the 20-time Grand Slam champion came in the semi-finals of the 2019 French Open, former world No. 3 Ljubicic believes the windy conditions that day played the part. spoilsport.
“I mean, personally, I know I’m a perfectionist but I’m really sorry for that semi-final at Roland Garros, they went against each other. It was so windy that the match wasn’t a real match, you know what I mean. So I would have, I would have wanted to see him play against Rafa on an equal footing. Not on an equal footing, of course it was on an equal footing, but under normal conditions,” he said.
“I’m not saying he would have won, but I think it would have been a fantastic game. It was already like that, but I really believe that at this stage he believed he could also really hurt him too on clay. But on other surfaces he definitely felt superior after this Australian Open and I think the results obviously show that.”
Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal set to team up at 2022 Laver Cup
Roger Federer will be in action one last time before hanging up his racquet at the Laver Cup, which kicks off later this year.
The 41-year-old has landed in London and started preparations for the tournament. He will represent Team Europe as always and will be joined by Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Matteo Berrettini and Casper Ruud.
They will face a world team consisting of Taylor Fritz, Felix Auger-Aliassime, Diego Schwartzman, Frances Tiafoe, Alex de Minaur, Jack Sock and Tommy Paul.