Novak Djokovic lost a very crucial US Open final against Daniil Medvedev 4-6,4-6,4-6. The result of the match raised many questions but the most common question was whether the ‘Big 3’ era is over or not. Even Djokovic was asked about his feeling of the Net Gen taking over.
The Serb feels that it is inevitable for players like Daniil Medvedev, Dominic Thiem and others to start winning Grand Slam and as both of them have won, he feels that take over has started. Former Australian tennis player Todd Woodbridge also shares the same feeling with Djokovic.
He made a bold claim by saying that Djokovic’s defeat at the US Open finals marks the end of the ‘Big 3’ era. In his recently published piece for the Nine Network, he wrote the US Open final to be the turning point in tennis history. He wants the other youngsters to take the example of Thiem and Medvedev and hopefully once they will be able to call themselves Grand Slam winners.
“With sport, things move on really quickly, new stories, new drama is always created,” the 50-year-old said. “This tournament [the 2021 US Open] was a real pivot in the tennis world.”
“I feel that the era of the ‘Big 3’ is over,” he added. “Novak may still win one or two more Majors, but I think there’s a feeling that this younger generation now see themselves as Grand Slam winners.”
Woodbridge also adds a very interesting perspective regarding Djokovic’s rivalry with Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer. He feels that such long-standing rivalry helps both the players to improve and develop as a better player. Therefore Woodbridge feels that Djokovic would want Nadal and Federer to return to action soon.
“I’m not suggesting Novak will fall off a cliff, because he’ll still have the goal of winning a 21st Slam,” Woodbridge continued. “But I think Novak would love it if Rafa came back to challenge him, because that’s the type of motivation an athlete needs. If Rafa and Roger aren’t there, that’s a much tougher assignment for Novak.”
It will be interesting to see when and in what condition the ‘Big 3’ return for the following season. While Nadal and Federer are nursing injuries, the Serb is mentally drained after losing the Calendar Grand Slam.