Why was Federer incapable of beating Nadal at RG, unlike Djokovic?

Tony48

Legend
Djokovic has no RG wins against Primedal and only one five-set loss, duh.
His longevity on the surface has been quite a bit greater than Federer's though, hence the results.
Djokovic has beaten Nadal plenty of times outside of RG on clay. Unlike Federer. So naturally, those wins would translate to RG, while Federer would never get close. "Prime Nadal" is just something Federer fans like to use to justify Federer's losses, when in reality, Federer simply wasn't good enough.

Federer struggled against Nadal on all surfaces. So beating him at RG was obviously out of the question, "Prime Nadal" or not.
 

Tony48

Legend
So he just coincidentally has played only one small tournament since then, citing his injury? Even after RG 2009 which was a far more shocking and crushing defeat (and when he was also injured) he kept playing almost every tournament remember.
Yes, I know. Nadal is always "injured." He never loses when he's healthy. Et cetera.

We all saw the match. Nadal looked on fire and primed to win the tournament. Then out of no where -- coincidentally against his number 1 rival, the guy who has beaten him there before, who has beaten him multiple times on clay -- he's "injured."

OK.
 

Winners or Errors

Hall of Fame
Yes, I know. Nadal is always "injured." He never loses when he's healthy. Et cetera.

We all saw the match. Nadal looked on fire and primed to win the tournament. Then out of no where -- coincidentally against his number 1 rival, the guy who has beaten him there before, who has beaten him multiple times on clay -- he's "injured."

OK.
This is the "weak era" problem. Even broken versions of Djoker and Nadal are still stomping the next, next-next, and next-next-next generations, and then whichever one of them can still walk wins the tournament. A very broken Fed made the quarterfinals of Wimbledon when he could barely walk. Truly pathetic performances from the young for the decade.
 
Djokovic has a 2-7 record

and 1 of those losses was an extremely close 5 setter that he could have won. DID NOT WIN.

Why was Federer so poor against Nadal at RG,

whereas Djokovic has done reasonably well?
Since you equate a 22% winning pct. to doing "reasonably well" ask yourself this:

- Tennis: your 1st serve percentage is 22%. How would you rate your 1st serve?
- Baseball: as manager your team's winning percentage is 22%......did somebody say walking papers?
- Basketball: your FG pct. is 22%. Who in their right mind would pass you the ball (let alone play with you)??
- Football: As QB, your completion percentage is 22%; as a placekicker you're successful on only 22% of your attempts. How long before you were cut?
- Socially: 78% of women you invite out on a date want to have nothing to do with you. Do you become a monk, a hermit or marry a mail order blow-up doll?

.
 
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Yes, I know. Nadal is always "injured." He never loses when he's healthy. Et cetera.

We all saw the match. Nadal looked on fire and primed to win the tournament. Then out of no where -- coincidentally against his number 1 rival, the guy who has beaten him there before, who has beaten him multiple times on clay -- he's "injured."

OK.
LOL you and I both know Nadal in 2015 was beyond pathetic. By far the worst Nadal that ever existed, including his 16 and 17 year old version. So yes technically he had a win over Nadal at RG before but yeah. To me Djokovic's biggest achievement vs Nadal at RG was so nearly beating him in 2013, that was super impressive, atleast far above the win over a totally lame ass Nadal in 2015, that atleast 5 other people that event probably would have managed to do.

And I agree Nadal has a lot of questionable so called injuries in his career (well Novak to an extent has a lot of questionable supposed injuries, retirements from matches, etc..that is the biggest thing the two have in common besides playing style, and 20 slams). However he would not choose to play only 1 more tournament the rest of the year, something he didn't even do in 2009 after a much more crushing and shocking loss in RG when he was visibly injured a lot of the rest of the year. That just would not happen if there was a real injury. I am sure you can not explain his virtually skipping the entire rest of the year away, and Nadal himself says he is injured, his team does, so what seems the reasonable conclusion to come to.
 

InsideOut900

Hall of Fame
because Djokovic got a really crappy Nadal at RG 15 and a well below prime level Nadal at RG 21.
Fed never got a Nadal close to that.

Every time Djokovic got prime level Nadal, he's lost - 07,08,12,13,14, 20 (leaving out 06 when djoko was young)
Only 13 was close.
Novak's performance in the 2015 QF in particular gets sweeped aside a bit easy. I guess it's because he couldn't replicate the same level in the next rounds, but that level he displayed against Nadal would be a hassle to face otherwise. Better than 2012/2014 finals, at the 2011/2013 SF levels.

2021 SF he was obviously not favoured to win. What's the point of bringing prime Fed when Novak was old himself? Better ask if 2014/2015 Fed would beat 2021 Nadal. I actually think it could happen.
 

Jokervich

Hall of Fame
Since you equate a 22% winning pct. to doing "reasonably well" ask yourself this:

- Tennis: your 1st serve percentage is 22%. How would you rate your 1st serve?
- Baseball: as manager your team's winning percentage is 22%......did somebody say walking papers?
- Basketball: your FG pct. is 22%. Who in their right mind would pass you the ball (let alone play with you)??
- Football: As QB, your completion percentage is 22%; as a placekicker you're successful on only 22% of your attempts. How long before you were cut?
- Socially: 78% of women you invite out on a date want to have nothing to do with you. Do you become a monk, a hermit or marry a mail order blow-up doll?

.
He's done reasonably well given that he's played him 9 times and 3 of those times were pre-2011. He's done better than anyone else has against Nadal at RG and realistically is the only player who can beat him there.
 

MisterP

Hall of Fame
Since you equate a 22% winning pct. to doing "reasonably well" ask yourself this:

- Tennis: your 1st serve percentage is 22%. How would you rate your 1st serve?
- Baseball: as manager your team's winning percentage is 22%......did somebody say walking papers?
- Basketball: your FG pct. is 22%. Who in their right mind would pass you the ball (let alone play with you)??
- Football: As QB, your completion percentage is 22%; as a placekicker you're successful on only 22% of your attempts. How long before you were cut?
- Socially: 78% of women you invite out on a date want to have nothing to do with you. Do you become a monk, a hermit or marry a mail order blow-up doll?

.
Compared to everyone else who’s name isn’t Robin Soderling, 22% at RG is phenomenal
 

abmk

Bionic Poster
Novak's performance in the 2015 QF in particular gets sweeped aside a bit easy. I guess it's because he couldn't replicate the same level in the next rounds, but that level he displayed against Nadal would be a hassle to face otherwise. Better than 2012/2014 finals, at the 2011/2013 SF levels.

2021 SF he was obviously not favoured to win. What's the point of bringing prime Fed when Novak was old himself? Better ask if 2014/2015 Fed would beat 2021 Nadal. I actually think it could happen.
I agree Djoko was pretty good in RG 15 QF. My point was about facing prime level Nadal or something close to it.
 

tex123

Professional
Even if that were true, it's Djokovic's consistency and longevity on clay that gave him so many shots (9) at Nadal, with a respectable 2-7 h2h.

He won RG at 34. Federer stopped being a factor on clay post 2012 (at 30-31). At Djoko's current age, (2015) Federer wasn't beating 2015 Nadal, or 2021 for that matter.
Not a question of "if that were true". It is a fact.
 

Biotic

Hall of Fame
Not a question of "if that were true". It is a fact.
Bring forth more excuses please...

It is also a fact that Djoko is out of prime 34 yo grampa. All of your injured out of form Nadal excuses go out the window, as Federer was nearly useless at RG post 2012.

Meanwhile Djokovic... 2019 SF, 2020 F, 2021 W.
 

NADALalot

Hall of Fame
Djokovic only beat 2015 Nadal, the same Nadal that lost in straight sets on clay to Wawrinka and Murray!
And then in 2021 Djokovic beat a version of Nadal so hampered by injury that he needed surgery on his foot while folks speculated that he's about to retire.....and Djokovic still needed 98 minutes to win the 3rd Set!
I don't see why we needed a 7 page thread to understand this.
 

abmk

Bionic Poster
Even if that were true, it's Djokovic's consistency and longevity on clay that gave him so many shots (9) at Nadal, with a respectable 2-7 h2h.

He won RG at 34. Federer stopped being a factor on clay post 2012 (at 30-31). At Djoko's current age, (2015) Federer wasn't beating 2015 Nadal, or 2021 for that matter.
2015 Fed could've beaten 2015 Nadal at RG. could have. physically was in better form. The mental part is what makes it a question mark.
 

tex123

Professional
Bring forth more excuses please...

It is also a fact that Djoko is out of prime 34 yo grampa. All of your injured out of form Nadal excuses go out the window, as Federer was nearly useless at RG post 2012.

Meanwhile Djokovic... 2019 SF, 2020 F, 2021 W.
Not what Djokovic said. He said he's never been more "prime" that he has been in 2021.

What's so hard to understand? It has been discussed and debated many times. It is clear that Djokovic has been more effective than Fed on Clay but it is also a fact that he has been very lucky that he was playing an out-of-form 2015 Nadal (who was pretty much losing to everyone) and he was playing a hobbling Nadal in 2021 under cooler evening conditions. Nadal called off his season pretty much after that. He still won the first set in the warm sun but as evening wore on in cooler conditions with a hobbling Nadal, it was just advantage Djokovic.

Federer just did not have that advantage/luck anytime on clay against Nadal.
 

Spencer Gore

Hall of Fame
Djokovic is a better tennis player than Federer -that much has been conclusively established- but neither of them could compete with prime Nadal on clay.
 

SonnyT

Hall of Fame
One important consideration. Djokovic is much the more tactical player, he's willing to adopt any tactics that will help him beat an opponent. Federer always thought he was good enough to beat any opponent, the tactics be damned.
 

Biotic

Hall of Fame
Not what Djokovic said. He said he's never been more "prime" that he has been in 2021.

What's so hard to understand? It has been discussed and debated many times. It is clear that Djokovic has been more effective than Fed on Clay but it is also a fact that he has been very lucky that he was playing an out-of-form 2015 Nadal (who was pretty much losing to everyone) and he was playing a hobbling Nadal in 2021 under cooler evening conditions. Nadal called off his season pretty much after that. He still won the first set in the warm sun but as evening wore on in cooler conditions with a hobbling Nadal, it was just advantage Djokovic.

Federer just did not have that advantage/luck anytime on clay against Nadal.
Why stop there? Please tell us more... :giggle:
 

Tony48

Legend
LOL you and I both know Nadal in 2015 was beyond pathetic. By far the worst Nadal that ever existed, including his 16 and 17 year old version. So yes technically he had a win over Nadal at RG before but yeah. To me Djokovic's biggest achievement vs Nadal at RG was so nearly beating him in 2013, that was super impressive, atleast far above the win over a totally lame ass Nadal in 2015, that atleast 5 other people that event probably would have managed to do.
"Nadal could have lost to 5 other people." And yet he didn't. He lost to the guy who was destroying the field left and right.

All these hypotheticals to prove a point.
 

BGod

Legend
There's a lot of variables at play. Obviously Nadal 2007-2011 was a better version than anything Novak came close to beating. But on the other hand, Fed really should have won in 2006 and even 2007 and had a great opportunity in 2011 as well. So you look at mental endurance.

But the short answer is situational. Fed's best opportunity was in 3 years all of which had Nadal in high form. Novak has had more opportunities and Nadal has been in lesser form.
 
There's a lot of variables at play. Obviously Nadal 2007-2011 was a better version than anything Novak came close to beating. But on the other hand, Fed really should have won in 2006 and even 2007 and had a great opportunity in 2011 as well. So you look at mental endurance.

But the short answer is situational. Fed's best opportunity was in 3 years all of which had Nadal in high form. Novak has had more opportunities and Nadal has been in lesser form.
 
He's done reasonably well given that he's played him 9 times and 3 of those times were pre-2011. He's done better than anyone else has against Nadal at RG and realistically is the only player who can beat him there.
Compared to everyone else who’s name isn’t Robin Soderling, 22% at RG is phenomenal
Fair point

(though I thought I'd get 'style points' for the blow-up doll crack..).

.
 

Ray Mercer

Hall of Fame
Djokovic has beaten Nadal plenty of times outside of RG on clay. Unlike Federer. So naturally, those wins would translate to RG, while Federer would never get close. "Prime Nadal" is just something Federer fans like to use to justify Federer's losses, when in reality, Federer simply wasn't good enough.

Federer struggled against Nadal on all surfaces. So beating him at RG was obviously out of the question, "Prime Nadal" or not.
Federer has tuned him up on fast indoor court plenty of times. On a truly fast surface that rewards aggressiveness and minimizes the effectiveness of retrieving Federer has a major advantage.

The bottom line is that Djokovic has the backhand to deal with Nadal’s high bouncing forehand on clay while Federer has trouble hitting through the high ball with his one hander. That’s it.
 
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