Roger Federer Rafael Nadal Novak Djokovic GOAT Race

Juan Martin Del Potro reveals who he thinks will replace the ‘big three’

Juan Martin Del Potro has revealed who he thinks could fulfill the roles of Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer after they have all retired.

Del Potro played the ‘big three’ on 62 occasions, winning 17 times (27%), and competed alongside them when he was at his peak.

However, the former No.3 had a career hampered with injuries, particularly to his wrists and knees, forcing him say ‘farewell’ to the sport in Buenos Aires last year.

The 34-year-old achieved great things in tennis including winning the US Open in 2009, winning the Davis Cup with Argentina in 2016 and collecting two Olympic medals.

However, Del Potro never achieved his ‘dream’ of making it to the top of the ATP rankings due to the dominance of Djokovic, Nadal and Federer.

“The only thing I lacked was being No. 1,” said Del Potro. “It was always a dream and I always worked for it… but I was proud of my career and I never made it because there was either Federer, or Nadal or Djokovic.”

He continued, “When I look at the rankings and the years of my career and who was fighting to be No. 1, I see that it was beautiful that these were the ones who didn’t let me make it, this dream.”

The Argentinian has also made his predictions for the future of men’s tennis, once Djokovic and Nadal have followed Federer and retired from the sport.

“One day, the ‘big three’ will end and we have Carlos Alcaraz, Jannik Sinner or Holger Rune, other young people who will mark the circuit. But for me, [for] many years – the ‘big three’ – there will not be anything similar,” claimed Del Potro.

Carlos Alcaraz has already experienced being at the top of the rankings, and could regain his spot there again if he wins the Indian Wells title this week.

Alcaraz will have to get past the aforementioned Jannik Sinner, in the semi-final, first if he is to stand a chance of winning the same title that Del Potro won back in 2018.

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Matthew Johns, Tennishead Writer, is a professional tennis journalist with a specialist degree in Sports Journalism. He's a keen tennis player having represented his local club and University plus he's also a qualified tennis coach. Matthew has a deep knowledge of tennis especially the ATP Tour and thrives on breaking big tennis news stories for Tennishead.