Roger Federer wins public vote for greatest tennis player of all time

Spain's Rafael Nadal (R) is congratulate

Over the last decade, we have seen a golden era for tennis, but the fans have decided that Roger Federer tops the lot as he edged out Rafael Nadal in a GiveMeSport poll earlier this week.

The women’s game has been a one-woman show as Serena Williams has obliterated the field by winning a record number of single Grand Slams - 23 in total.

Whereas the men's game has been dominated by Federer, Nadal and Novak Djokovic over the last decade, with the Serb not even making the final of the poll despite having the chance to hold all four Grand Slams at once this week, should he win the French Open.

GiveMeSport ran two groups on Twitter; group one consisted of Bjorn Borg, Federer, Williams and Martina Navratilova. Federer ran away with the poll, a staggering 86% of the votes. Poor Navratilova got 0% of the votes, despite her 18 Grand Slam titles!

Group two contained Pete Sampras, Nadal, Steffi Graf and Djokovic. In the end Nadal, the eventual winner with 56% of the votes in that one, set up another episode in the Nadal/Federer rivalry.

Let’s look at the stats… Federer has 20 Slams to his name, six Australian Open’s, one French Open, eight Wimbledon titles and five US Open titles.

The “King of Clay” Nadal has also completed the career Grand Slam. He has one Australian Open, a staggering 11 French Open’s, two Wimbledon crowns and three US Open titles, not bad for a man who’s regarded as a clay-court player.

What about the head-to-head? Unsurprisingly these two champions have met 38 times, but it may surprise you to know that Nadal has had the better of the Swiss on 23 of those occasions.

In fact, Federer also loses out on head-to-head against Djokovic, and with more years on Federer and Nadal, you wonder whether it could be the Serb who finishes his career with more Slams than the pair of them.

Nadal and Federer look set to meet again this week in the semi-final of the French Open, and you wouldn’t bet against the Spaniard to get the better of his rival again in that one.

In the end, though, for our Facebook poll, it was Federer who ran away with it on 72% of the 43,000 votes, with Nadal only on 28%.

There’s no doubt, though, that if Williams or Djokovic ever come across the results of the initial polls, they’ll feel hard done by considering their achievements in the game.

One thing is for sure, we are living in a golden era for tennis champions.

You have to wonder, who will be the next star of the game?

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