Roger Federer claimed consecutive titles on three surfaces in the summer of 2004
Winning three tournaments in a row is a challenging task. It becomes even more complicated when someone chases consecutive crowns on three surfaces, a feat reserved only for two players in the Open era! Bjorn Borg achieved that in 1979, and Roger Federer joined an exclusive list 25 years later.
At 25, Bjorn Borg had already conquered 11 Majors and over 60 ATP crowns, taking most of those on clay and carpet. The fantastic Swede was a player to beat on grass, too. He won five straight Wimbledon titles between 1976 and 1980, standing as one of the most successful players at The All England Club.
Borg’s hard-court results were less efficient than on the other three surfaces. However, he still reached three US Open finals on that surface between 1978 and 1981 and lifted the Canada Open title, one of four on hard. The most successful season in this outstanding player’s career came in 1979 when he claimed 13 ATP titles and grabbed 84 out of 90 wins, including Major crowns in Paris and London.Also, Bjorn achieved an extraordinary feat that summer.
The Swede conquered back-to-back titles on three surfaces after going all the way at Wimbledon, Bastad and Toronto, keeping that record for the next 25 years! Borg was two sets to one down in two Wimbledon matches that year against Vijay Amritraj and again in the final versus Roscoe Tanner.
He overcame all the obstacles to pick up his fourth consecutive crown in the cathedral of tennis, becoming the first player since Anthony Wilding in 1913 to achieve that! Bjorn returned to Sweden to play Bastad on clay and dropped just 17 games in ten sets to celebrate another title in an already notable season.
Carried by this momentum, Borg headed to Toronto, where we witnessed one of his most excellent performances on hard.
Roger Federer won consecutive titles on three surfaces in 2004.
The Swede lost ten games in the semi-final and final against the upcoming youngsters Ivan Lendl and John McEnroe to win the fourth consecutive tournament and the third on different surfaces.
Roger Federer was the dominant figure on the Tour in 2004. The Swiss scored 74 wins in 80 matches, delivering 11 titles and becoming the first player with three Major crowns in a season since Mats Wilander in 1988! Tim Henman, Rafael Nadal, Albert Costa and Gustavo Kuerten were the only players who had beaten Roger before Canada.
Federer defended his Wimbledon title after beating Andy Roddick in four sets and had no time to celebrate.The Swiss traveled back home to Gstaad in what probably was his last attempt to win the event where he debuted on the Tour in 1998.
Roger survived a scare against Ivo Karlovic in the second round to avoid an early exit. He overpowered Igor Andreev in the title match for his first crown on the home ground and the fourth on clay. Roger took a well-deserved two weeks off the court and returned in Toronto, eager to extend his streak.
Federer stood as a player to beat again, facing Andy Roddick in the final and celebrating his fourth Masters 1000 title. Thus, Federer proved his class on various surfaces within a couple of weeks, and we are still waiting to see a player who would join Borg and Federer on this exclusive list.