Federer v Nadal 2008: Wimbledon’s greatest final a decade on

It is 10 years since the two titans met for the third in a trilogy of finals at SW19 and served up what Björn Borg described as ‘the best tennis match I’ve ever seen in my life’

There’s no ready measure for greatness, no simple standard or scale. To pick one game as the best ever played you need to weigh more than a 100 years’ worth of who, what, where, when, why, and how. To even get to the best Wimbledon final in modern history you have to split Goran Ivanisevic v Pat Rafter from Venus Williams v Lindsay Davenport, to separate Björn Borg’s 16-18 tie-break against John McEnroe from Margaret Court’s seven match points against Billie Jean King. And then you come to that match, Rafael Nadal v Roger Federer in 2008, 6-4, 6-4, 6-7, 6-7, 9-7, 10 years ago this summer. And suddenly it’s simple.

Just ask McEnroe, who commentated on it – “The greatest match I’ve ever seen” – or Borg, who watched it from the royal box: “That’s the best tennis match I’ve ever seen in my life. I was just happy to be there, to be part of that final. You cannot see a better tennis match.”

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