Rafael Nadal vs. Roger Federer; the numbers
RAFAEL Nadal squared off against Novak Djokovic in Paris on Sunday in the 2020 French Open men’s final with history on the line, as well as a $1.9 million check for the winner. (The loser got $1 million.)
Nadal was chasing more than just Djokovic’s scorching two-handed backhands in front of 1,000 fans at Roland Garros in the final of the tournament, rescheduled from June because of the coronavirus. The Spaniard entered the event one Grand Slam title shy of Roger Federer’s record 20 championships and bragging rights as tennis’ greatest of all time (GOAT); Djokovic ranks third in history with 17 Slams.
Djokovic held a slim 29-26 advantage over Nadal in their 15 years facing off on the ATP Tour, and they had split their previous eight Slam finals, with the most recent a Djokovic win at the 2019 Australian Open. But Nadal demolished Djokovic on Sunday in a 6-0, 6-2, 7-5 victory.
The Djokovic-Nadal rivalry is one of the best in tennis, but it is Federer-Nadal that is destined to go down in history alongside Borg-McEnroe and Navratilova-Evert. The duo won 24 out of the 28 Slams between 2004 and 2010.
While the on-court rivalry between Nadal and Federer is close, Fed, who sat out the French Open while recovering from knee surgery, wins in a walkover off the court. The Swiss tennis ace was the world’s highest-paid athlete for the 12 months ending June 1, with endorsement earnings of $100 million, four times what his rival Nadal made.
Here is a breakdown of the numbers on and off the court for Nadal and Federer.
2: Nadal’s current world ranking, behind only Djokovic. Federer sits at No. 4.
2: Olympic gold medals for Nadal—a 2008 medal in singles and another in doubles in 2016 in Rio. Federer won gold in doubles in 2008 and silver in singles in 2012.
13: Nadal’s record number of French Open titles after Sunday’s win, more than twice as many as Björn Borg’s six, a total that ranks second in the Open era.
15: Straight years Federer has been the highest-paid tennis player in the world, including prize money and endorsements. Andre Agassi was the last player to out-earn Fed.
20: Grand Slam titles won by Nadal after Sunday’s victory, including at least one in a men’s-record ten straight years. That ties him for the Grand Slam singles record with Federer, who has captured a record eight Wimbledon crowns. Federer’s last major title came at the 2018 Australian Open.
24-16: Nadal holds a commanding lead in his head-to-head rivalry with Federer, but he’s lost seven of their last eight matches.
86: Career singles titles for Nadal, the fourth-most in the Open era.
103: Career titles for Federer, the second-most, behind Jimmy Connors’ 109.
160: Nadal was ranked No. 2 in the world behind Federer for a record 160 straight weeks, from July 2005 until August 2008, when Nadal overtook Fed for the top spot.
310: Federer’s record number of weeks ranked No. 1 in the world, including 237 straight weeks. He most recently was first in June 2018, when he became the oldest to hit the top spot at 36. Nadal has been on top of the ATP rankings for 209 weeks, sixth-most all-time. His last time at No. 1 was in November.
1998: The year Federer turned pro. Nadal followed three years later.
$1.05 million: Nadal wore a $1,05 million Richard Mille watch during his matches throughout the French Open. The watch weighs a scant one ounce, and only 50 were made. Nadal has endorsed the brand for ten years.
$17 million: Nadal and a fellow Spaniard, the six-time NBA All-Star Pau Gasol, raised more than $17 million to help the Red Cross’ efforts to support those impacted by the coronavirus in Spain.
$40 million: Nadal’s earnings from prize money and endorsements for the 12 months ending June 1; that total ranked No. 27 among all athletes.
$52 million: Money spent by the Roger Federer Foundation to support educational projects in southern Africa and Switzerland.
$106 million: Earnings for Federer when he topped Forbes’ 2020 tally of the world’s highest-paid athletes. He is the first tennis player on top since the list debuted in 1990.
$121 million: Career prize money for Nadal heading into the French Open, trailing only Federer ($130 million) and Djokovic ($144 million).
$300 million: Value of the ten-year deal Federer signed with Japanese apparel brand Uniqlo in 2018. He cashes the checks whether he is active or retired from the ATP Tour.
$900 million: Estimated career earnings for Federer, including prize money, endorsements and appearance fees since he turned pro. Nadal had banked an estimated $450 million through June 2020. – forbes.com