FedEx Performance Zone: Best Career Grand Slam Records
A look at where Nadal, Djokovic and Federer rank among other all-time greats
Rafael Nadal will go down in history as one of the greatest players to touch foot on a clay court, especially because of his staggering nine Roland Garros crowns. This is well known.
What's easily lost in admiring Nadal's clay-court dominance, though, is his success at the three other Grand Slams. In fact, the Spaniard has accumulated one of the greatest career Grand Slam records in history, according to the FedEx ATP Performance Zone.
Before the start of the 2017 Australian Open, Nadal ranked sixth all-time with a winning percentage of 86.8 (203-31) during Grand Slam matches. He's behind five of the all-time greatest players: Don Budge, 92.1%; Bjorn Borg, 89.8%; Bill Tilden, 89.8%; Rene Lacoste, 88.4%; Fred Perry, 87.1%.
But among active players, Nadal's winning percentage is the best, even better than rivals Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer. “I am happy with the way I am playing,” Nadal said after his first Grand Slam win of the season on Tuesday in Melbourne. “It was great to be back on the big stadium. I feel the support of the people, the love of the people. That is something that is very special for me.”
Djokovic is close behind Nadal on the all-time list. The Serbian is eighth with a winning percentage of 86.4, backed by a record of 228-36, not including his 2017 Australian Open matches. Djokovic also has two fewer Grand Slam titles, 12, than Nadal, 14.
But among active players, the Belgrade native is the leader in Australian Open crowns. Djokovic is going for his seventh title Down Under this fortnight.
“The fact that I've done so well in Melbourne Park the last 10 years of my career basically, it's been the most successful Grand Slam that I've had, of course gives me a lot of thrill, a lot of confidence and excitement to approach it,” Djokovic said during his pre-tournament press conference.
Federer, the all-time Grand Slam titles leader with 17, has more wins than both Nadal and Djokovic but a slightly worse winning percentage, 85.8. Before the Australian Open, Federer had posted a 307-51 record in Grand Slams. The Swiss has also played in more Grand Slam tournaments than his two rivals. After missing more than six months of tour-level action, Federer returned to Melbourne Park on Monday for his 18th Australian Open.
“I was happy. I was really, really happy just to win, to be out there,” Federer said. “It's nice speaking to the crowd at the end. Now being here, feeling like I'm part of this tournament. I wasn't just in the draw. I'm actually making strides. It's a good feeling.”