Roger Federer says Serena Williams is the greatest tennis player of all-time

  • Roger Federer said he thinks Serena Williams is the greatest tennis player of all time.

  • Federer said that Williams' single and doubles accomplishments are unparalleled in the game.

  • Williams said the same could be said for Federer.


Serena Williams is preparing to play in the French Open, her first major since having her first child.

To Roger Federer, Williams' legacy is already cemented, even if she doesn't add to her decorated career.

Federer told The Wall Street Journal's Jason Gay that, to him, Williams is the greatest tennis player of all-time — man or woman.

Federer and Williams are the same age and have both enjoyed nearly unparalleled success, two of the best athletes in any sport, still dominating at ages few expected. Federer compared their dissimilar rises to stardom while calling Williams the greatest of all-time.

"It's been fascinating to watch," Federer told Gay. "She had a totally different upbringing — I came up through Switzerland with the federation, she did it with her dad and her sister. It's an amazing story unto itself — and then she became one of the greatest, if not the greatest tennis player of all time."

Gay wrote that he asked Federer if he meant the greatest player ever or simply the greatest female ever, and Federer reaffirmed his stance. From Gay:

"I have to ask: Did Federer, considered by some to be the tennis GOAT (Greatest Of All Time), just suggest Serena was the GOAT? Did he mean GOAT on the women's side — or overall?

"'Overall,' Federer clarifies. He ticks off the staggering stats of players like Williams and Steffi Graf, which eclipse those of anyone in men’s tennis, especially when one factors in all of Serena’s doubles titles."

Gay asked Williams for her response, and she said they could both be considered the GOAT.

"I think we can say that about both of us, respectively," she said. "He's done amazing things in his career — I have the utmost respect for him. He's a wonderful athlete, a great guy. "

Federer won't be playing in the French Open this year, but with his career still in full swing and Williams returning to the court, it's possible that both players add to their legacies in the coming months and possibly years.

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