Nadal believes Tsitsipas is ready for the big one in 2020

Nadal believes Tsitsipas is ready for Grand Slam glory. The 2019 season leaves little doubt about the next generation’s arrival, albeit belated, on the big scene.

Nadal believes Tsitsipas is ready for the big one in 2020.  

Asked about the ‘NextGen‘ players, Nadal said, “It’s normal that there’s a buzz around them and it will get louder because we’re getting older every day and they’re getting better every day.

“Every year they’re improving. I think that they can win the biggest tournaments, like Medvedev, Tsitsipas and Thiem did this year.

“I think that Shapovalov is going to make a big step up this year and Sinner’s trajectory is incredible.

“They’re here to stay. We’re still around but the cycle of life is brutal and at some point that’s going to change, and sooner rather than later.”

The graying of tennis
The graying of tennis

The graying of tennis over the last 15 years.

The slower courts, across all types of surfaces, have caused a complete demise of early strike and serve and volley tennis. The ATP world belongs to the retrievers and grinders, with tons of patience, and the maturity to know exactly when, if at-all, to pull the trigger. The game is more about not losing instead of winning points. Patience and perseverance is the name of the game now, and patience – as we all know – is the natural domain of the wise and relatively mature beings. The early 30s, is the dominance phase nowadays, was the retirement age up until the early 2000s. Just count the number of talent-less and semi-talented geezers, in their early and mid-thirties, flourishing, primarily on the strength of stamina, speed, and athleticism, in the ATP nowadays? The slowing down and homogeneity of the playing surfaces has resulted in the graying of tennis.  

Is Tsitsipas a Federer incarnate?

Considering the circumstances, it’s a miracle that someone as young as Tsitsipas is poking his premature head as a slam contender. Is it because the dominant forces are well past their 30, and the lost generation has practically given up on the prospects of winning a slam? Or, is Tsitsipas a Federer incarnate, and, therefore, defies all norms? Who really knows, but 138mph is certain that the answer to that riddle too is related to the evolution and graying of tennis over the last 15 years.

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