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Saturday, 28 January 2017 21:49 PM GMT
Tennis legends predict Federer v Nadal final
Tennis legends like Rod Laver and Martina Navratilova give their opinions on the Federer v Nadal Australian Open final. READ MORE

When Roger Federer takes on Rafael Nadal in the final of the Australian Open final on Sunday, it will be the 35th time that the two men with the two highest Grand Slam title tallies have met. Nadal, at 30, five years younger than Federer, leads 23-11 and 6-2 in Grand Slam finals. 

Lindsay Davenport

You look at the head to head and it’s Rafa and you look at the record in three out of five sets and it’s Rafa.

This court is so fast, Rod Laver is playing the fastest anyone can remember in years, Roger has the extra day’s rest – I think all of that is going to play into it.

Yes, Rafa came back in 2009, but he was so much younger then, it is harder to recover now. I’d give a slight edge to Roger just because of the other circumstances.

Rod Laver
They know each other’s game so well – you look at Nadal’s forehand whipped into Roger’s backhand. I know Roger said, I’ve got to do something, this was four or five years ago, so he got a larger-headed racket with a little bit more power in it and weight so now when this heavy topspin comes in, he won’t have to slice it as much.

Yes, it’s a good shot, slicing it, but it allows Nadal to get around it and be aggressive with that forehand a little more.

I think you’ll see Roger being pretty aggressive and now it’s a matter of does he get too involved with trying to win the points too quickly? If he serves well, maybe Roger has an edge, but I can’t go much further than that.

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