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The statistics that defined 2022 – Nadal and Djokovic flip-flop in the Grand Slam race

The Big Three continued to dominate the Grand Slam men’s singles titles list in 2022, winning three of the four on offer.

Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic, 2021 Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic, 2021 | Image Credit: AI / Reuters / Panoramic

Another tennis season in the books, and the general trend of the Big Three dominating the Grand Slams continues, but it felt a bit different in 2022, with Roger Federer retiring and Novak Djokovic ruled out of two of the four Grand Slams.

Nevertheless the Big Three (now two) still held sway on the sport’s biggest stages, taking home three of the four major titles on offer.

Nadal takes the lead!

It was quite a season for Rafael Nadal, who finally passed Federer on the all-time Grand Slam singles titles list. He also broke a tie with Djokovic and ended a season as the all-time men’s singles Grand Slam singles title leader for the first time.

Famously, 2021 had ended with the three-headed monster in a three-way tie for the all-time lead, with 20 titles apiece. Now it looks decidedly different…

Grand Slam singles titles, all-time, after 2022:

  • Rafael Nadal, 22
  • Novak Djokovic, 21
  • Roger Federer, 20

Since Roger Federer won his first major singles title at Wimbledon in 2003, the Big Three have combined to win 63 of the last 77 major singles titles.

How long can Nadal and Djokovic keep up the domination? With Djokovic returning to Australia next season and Rafa always the overwhelming favourite at Roland-Garros, the odds do favour the legends, but with Nadal turning 37 in June and Djokovic turning 36 in May, time is not on the side of this dynamic duo.

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