The era of Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, and Roger Federer is nearing the end, and it’s time for the next generation of players to step up and lay down a marker. On the face of it, the sport’s future looks to be in safe hands, with the likes of Alexander Zverev, Andrey Rublev, and Daniil Medvedev breaking through. That said, there’s an ever-growing perception that tennis’s next star is Stefanos Tsitsipas. The Greek right-hander turned professional in 2016, and now he’s ready to show that he can fill the Big Three’s shoes.
Longing for His First Grand Slam
At the time of writing, Tsitsipas is the ATP world number four, sitting ahead of Zverev and behind Dominic Thiem. The 22-year-old has seven career titles to his name, including the illustrious Monte Carlo Masters, where he beat Thiem by straight sets in the final. However, the Greek is yet to win his first Grand Slam, and he’ll be striving to lift his first major at Wimbledon. As of June 22nd, Tsitsipas is currently 11/2 in Wimbledon betting 2021 to clinch the title at the London-based competition, and he’ll unquestionably be an intriguing contender to support off the back of Wimbledon 2021 betting tips.
Thus far in his career, Tsitsipas has struggled at Wimbledon. His best finish at the tournament came back in 2018, when he reached the fourth round before being eliminated by John Isner. Despite the Greek’s talent, winning his first major won’t be an easy task while the Big Three continue to grace the sport. As per ESPN, only three other players outside of Djokovic, Federer, and Nadal have won a Grand Slam since the 2013 US Open. Since then, Stan Wawrinka has won three majors, while Marin Cilic and Thiem have one to their name.
Age is on His Side
Despite not yet winning his first Grand Slam, there’s reason for optimism in the Tsitsipas camp. At just 22 years of age, there’s plenty of time for him to develop his game and fulfil his potential. His age, however, isn’t the only pivotal factor in whether or not he’ll lift a major title. Currently, Djokovic and Nadal are both 34, while Federer is 39 and coming back from a long-term knee injury. Although there are no indications that retirement is on the cards, they can’t compete forever.
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Thiem showed at the 2020 US Open that Grand Slam success is possible even while the Big Three continue to play. Others, meanwhile, have just fallen short, including Medvedev, who lost the 2021 Australian Open final to Djokovic. Compared to other up-and-coming talents, Boris Becker believes that Tsitsipas is “very far ahead” in regards to challenging the Big Three over the coming months and years, even declaring that the Greek may have surpassed Zverev concerning performance levels.
Surely, It’s Only a Matter of Time?
Few can doubt that Tsitsipas is one of the most promising players of the modern era. With seven career titles, the 22-year-old has already shown that he can compete in the latter stages of competitions. Now, he needs to transfer that success into Grand Slam events. Deep down, the Greek may hope to triumph while the Big Three remain active, but even if that doesn’t happen, his time will come.