Roger Federer made his Grand Slam debut on this day back in 1999

  • Alex Batt

May 25. A truly iconic day in the world of tennis.

Why you ask? Well it was when Grand Slam competitions witnessed the first sighting of a young Swiss called Roger Federer.

May 25, 1999 is the exact date as a fresh faced youngster took to court in the French Open to take on Patrick Rafter.

Sadly on that day, Federer fell short after losing in four sets, but what he would go on to achieve in the sport is truly phenomenal and it’s something we must celebrate, especially on its 21st anniversary.

As we all know now, Federer would go on to become one of tennis’ greats, and if you were to ask millions of tennis fans around the world, a lot of them would say he is the GREATEST of all time. And to be honest, it’s hard to argue with them.

Federer has had some epic tussles and battles in his professional career. 

Seeing off the ageing Pete Sampras. Getting the better of Andy Roddick. Then competing with the likes of Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray.

It could easily be said that Federer has competed in the toughest eras of tennis, and the fact he sits atop the Grand Slam winners tree says all you need to know about the legend.

Now 38, that hasn’t stopped him from winning in recent years, with his latest taste of victory coming in 2018 at the Australian Open.

Although his days may be numbered, especially with the coronavirus ongoing and wiping out two Grand Slams, Federer will go down as one of the greatest to ever play the game, if not the greatest, and rightfully so.

In total he’s won 20 Grand Slams. TWENTY! He’s won six Down Under, one in France, eight at Wimbledon and five in America.

Of course, his tally in France is low, but that’s because of how dominate Nadal is on clay, but the spread of the Grand Slams elsewhere proves he is the master of the court.

Little did we know on May 25, 1999 a true legend graced our TV screens and tennis court for the first time at Grand Slam level.

We salute you, Roger.

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