Over the past two years, tennis has been dominated by two athletes. Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic have combined to win the last nine Grand Slam tournaments. The past four major tournaments each featured a final between the two top players in the world.
While it is exciting to see athletes at the top of their game, tennis fans needed something different. What they get is two great stories from each side of the bracket meeting at the end.
On one side is Andy Murray, a man who has been great for a number of years, but could never cross the threshold of elite. The No. 4 player in the world has won 22 career titles, but none of them in a Grand Slam tournament.
He has come close, reaching the finals three times and the semifinals an additional six times. At Wimbledon, he reached the semifinals for the fourth straight year this week before finally advancing to the finals with a win over Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
A win for Murray would not only be significant for himself, but all of Great Britain. He is already the first British man to reach the finals of Wimbledon since 1938. A win would make him the first to take home the title since Fred Perry in 1936.
For a tournament that takes place in England and once featured only British competitors in the winner's circle, this drought has gone on long enough. The crowd has been cheering hard for Murray during his run, and he has seemed to feed off the positive energy.
His opponent in the final is no stranger to winning. In fact, Federer has more career Grand Slam wins than anyone in the open era. In the final, he is battling not only Murray but his own legacy.
The Swiss athlete was once the most dominant player in the sport, but has not won a major title in the last two years. He seemed like he lost a step, even at Wimbledon where he has had so much success.
In this tournament, Federer proved that he is not close to the end of his career and still has plenty left in the tank. It seemed like he would not beat Djokovic again, but the veteran used great serving to take out the current No. 1 player in the world in four sets.
With a win in the final, Federer would tie Pete Sampras and William Renshaw for the most career titles at Wimbledon. He would cement himself as the best grass player of all time.
A matchup of Djokovic and Nadal would be entertaining, but the current final provides so many more dimensions of entertainment. Each are at their best on grass. Murray has won 79 percent of his matches on the surface while Federer's mark is about 87 percent.
The final should feature a great display of tennis. The two men will provide an excellent match full of great serves and long volleys. The officials at Wimbledon could not ask for anything more.
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