WIMBLEDON, England (AP) — If Roger Federer’s going to win a record ninth championship at Wimbledon, he’ll need to follow up a victory over Rafael Nadal with one over defending champion Novak Djokovic.
Federer has played both at the same Grand Slam tournament only once, at the 2011 French Open: He beat Djokovic in the semifinals, but lost to Nadal in the final.
As is the case with Nadal, Federer has faced Djokovic so many times over the years that each knows the other’s game so well. And as is the case with Nadal, Djokovic has managed to get the better of Federer head-to-head so far.
“It’s the same like going into a Rafa match: I think the moment you’ve played somebody, probably, more than 15 times — especially in recent years, also, a few times — there’s not that much more left out there. Especially, you know where the players go when it really matters,” the No. 2-seeded Federer said, looking ahead to Sunday’s final, his 12th at the All England Club.
“How much can you still surprise somebody?”
This will be the 48th time Federer and Djokovic play against each other as pros, which is eight more than Federer vs. Nadal has happened.
It’s also the 16th showdown between Federer…