Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal have to retire - Yannick Noah
Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal need to retire to give the younger guys in tennis a shot, claims former French Open champion Yannick Noah.
Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal have rolled back the years this season to retake their place at the top of the ATP rankings.
Nadal, 31, is currently the world No 1 following his victory in the US Open and most recently the China Open.
And 36-year-old Federer is also showing no signs of letting up and has his eyes firmly set on this month’s Shanghai Masters.
However, former French Open champion Yannick Noah thinks their longevity is doing a disservice to the younger players in the game and joked they should retire.
Yannick Noah thinks younger players are struggling to compete with Rafa Nadal and Roger Federer
“The younger guys are doing well, but they have not been lucky,” he told Spanish outlet ABC.
“They are facing probably the best three players ever in the same era. That’s very unusual.
“You can have two, but not three. Nadal, Federer, [Novak] Djokovic and also [Andy] Murray. Having the chance to break through between them is very tough.
“In order to win a Grand Slam title you need to beat one, two or three. It’s almost impossible.
“I am sure that 20 or 22-year-olds are wishing Federer and Nadal would retire, ‘Now do you let us play?‘“
And Noah also thinks the quality further down the rankings is much higher than during his day, meaning players can never have an off day.
“To be world No 6 or 7 you have to be a great player. It’s something people tend to forget. In tennis you play every day and it’s even tougher,” he added.
“If you are no 7 and you play a tournament without being at 100 per cent, it’s easy to lose to no 40.
“At my time, although you were not doing well, if you were not focused enough, if you were no 5, you didn’t lose to no 14.
“It makes Roger and Rafa so special and incredible.”