Rafael Nadal completed the 'Roger-Rafa Slam' on Sunday night by winning the US Open, the 16th Grand Slam title of his career.
The straight-sets win over South African Kevin Anderson caps off a nostalgic year for tennis, with Roger Federer and Nadal winning two Grand Slams each. The last time both men won all the Grand Slams in a calendar year was 2010, when the Spaniard won three of the four Slams.
Nadal's triumph cemented his place at the top of the World Rankings with the win. His third win in New York also moves him two clear of Pete Sampras, but he's three Grand Slam wins behind Roger Federer.
— US Open Tennis (@usopen) September 10, 2017
While the win was expected it Anderson, the fact that Nadal was victorious raises questions about the young players coming up through the game. 31-year-old Anderson was competing in his first Grand Slam final against a player, three weeks younger than him.
In a year dominated by himself and Federer, Nadal feels the rivalry between the duo is still important in tennis.
Of course this rivalry has been important for our sport, in my opinion. That involved a lot of people, and because of different styles, different characters, and we played for the most important things for such a long time, I think that was the great promotion for our sport. In a positive way, I think, because our relationship has always been very respectful, and friendly.
So, yeah, is great. I feel happy to be part of this rivalry, but at the same time, I played even more matches with Novak than with Roger in such important matches, too.
In my career, I have been involved on different rivalries. I feel lucky to be part of all of them in some way. In another way, I have been in an era that three players achieve 19, 16 and 12. That's a lot, no? There is a remarkable part of the history of our sport. So that means was difficult for everybody to win titles in this part of the, in this era.
You would have gotten some odds at the start of the year on both Federer and Nadal sharing the Grand Slams in 2017. With a fully-fit Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray to return next year, it's unlikely to happen again.