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Jannik Sinner Joins Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal in Elite Club After Defeating Corentin Moutet

Tanmay Roy

How Novak Djokovic Hit Back at Rafael Nadal After Backing Jannik Sinner in Monte Carlo Masters 2021

It seems Jannik Sinner can do nothing wrong this year. The 22-year-old Italian star is all set to play in the quarterfinals of the French Open 2024 on Tuesday after his stunning win over Frenchman Corentin Moutet. With this, he joined an elite club of sorts featuring Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.

Sinner emulated the two legends by becoming just the third player in the 21st century to reach the quarterfinals of Grand Slams more than once on each surface before turning 23.


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Jannik Sinner has been able to do what many big names could not, such as Roger Federer, Andre Agassi and Andy Roddick. The World No.2’s rise began at the 2020 French Open, where he beat the likes of Alexander Zverev and Federico Coria to make it to the first-ever Grand Slam quarter-final of his career.

At the clay court Grand Slam, his 2024 performance marked the second time he made it to the last 8. This is a huge booster for Sinner considering question marks on his prowess on clay over the years.

When it comes to Wimbledon, Jannik Sinner first reached the quarterfinals in 2022.  He defeated his rival Carlos Alcaraz in the fourth round and had to overcome other strong opponents like Jan-Lennard Struff, Tallon Griekspoor and Oscar Otte as well. In 2023, Sinner went one better and reached the semifinals and that result turned his fortunes around.

Before winning the Australian Open 2024, Sinner reached the top 8 of the ‘Happy Slam’ for the first time in 2022 as well. In the same year at the US Open, the Italian reached the quarterfinals after winning against Daniel Altmaier, Christopher Eubanks, Brandon Nakashima, and Ilya Ivasha respectively.

Across the clay, grass and hard surfaces, having made it to 7 Grand Slam quarterfinals so far, Jannik Sinner now has the edge when it comes to versatility over his rivals such as Carlos Alcaraz, Daniil Medvedev and Alexander Zverev.

Jannik Sinner’s ability to play across surfaces has improved since 2022. At such an early age, only Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal displayed such skill. Here’s how they went about it.

Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal, the Young Champions Before Jannik Sinner

Novak Djokovic was 19 years old when he reached the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam for the first time. This was at the 2006 French Open. In 2007, just after he turned 20, the Serb made it to the semifinals of the clay court Slam and Wimbledon, which was a watershed moment in his career. However, on all those 3 instances, he fell short against Rafael Nadal.

But Djokovic rebounded from those losses to make it to the US Open finals in the same year, losing to Roger Federer at the final hurdle. The only missing piece from the puzzle, Australian Open was left and the World No.1 conquered that as well for his first Grand Slam title in January 2008.

However, Novak Djokovic had to wait for another 18 months before he could complete this incredible set of multiple Grand Slam quarterfinal appearances on all surfaces by making it successfully to that stage in the 2009 edition, after turning 22.

On the other hand, Rafael Nadal was aged 19 when he won his first Grand Slam at the 2005 French Open. The following year saw the Spaniard defend his title in Paris, make it to his first-ever Wimbledon final as well as in the quarterfinals at the US Open for the first time. As he turned 20, there was no looking back.

In 2007, Nadal made it to his first-ever Australian Open quarter-final, won the French Open and reached the Wimbledon finals yet again. So just weeks after his 21st birthday, Rafael Nadal had reached multiple grass-court, clay-court, and hard-court quarter-finals.

Post Edited By:Dhruv Rupani

About the author

Tanmay Roy

Tanmay Roy


Tanmay Roy is a Tennis Journalist at The SportsRush, whose lifelong passion and zeal for the sport landed him this position. A writer with over 1000 articles under him, Tanmay fell in love with tennis in 2005 when Roger Federer defeated Andy Roddick in the Wimbledon final after a stunning three sets. Tanmay followed the likes of the Big Three - Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, and Rafael Nadal from the mid-noughties to now. His interest was stronger than ever after the wonderful 2009 Wimbledon Final which saw Roger Federer win after a see-saw 5-set match. His favorite female tennis player is Serena Williams and Monica Seles. Tanmay's favorite match-up to date is Roger Federer vs Andy Roddick in the 2000s. If possible, the John Isner vs Nicolas Mahut first round match at the 2010 Wimbledon is the only match Tanmay would love to watch Live by going back in time. Of late, he is a huge fan of Jannik Sinner and believes the youngster has the potential to break every record.

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