Roger Federer congratulates Rafael Nadal on tying male Grand Slam record

Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal
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Roger Federer was quick to welcome Rafael Nadal to the club — now tied for the male record 20 Grand Slam singles titles.

Federer, who owned the major record alone for the last 11 years, posted congratulations on social media 43 minutes after Nadal swept Novak Djokovic 6-0, 6-2, 7-5 for his 13th French Open title.

“I have always had the utmost respect for my friend Rafa as a person and as a champion,” Federer posted, along with a photo of him with Nadal. “As my greatest rival over many years, I believe we have pushed each other to become better players. Therefore, it is a true honor for me to congratulate him on his 20th Grand Slam victory. It is especially amazing that he has now won Roland Garros and incredible 13 times, which is one of the greatest achievements in sport. I also congratulate his team, because nobody can do this alone. I hope 20 is just another step on the continuing journey for both of us. Well done, Rafa. You deserve it.”

MORE: All-time Grand Slam singles titles list

Federer, who at 39 is five years older than Nadal, missed the French Open and last month’s U.S. Open after two knee surgeries.

The next major is the Australian Open in January. Federer looks to regain sole possession of the record. Nadal can push ahead and become the first man in the Open Era to win all four majors at least twice.

Meanwhile, Djokovic, a male record eight-time Australian Open winner, is at 17 Grand Slams. At 33, he is the youngest of the Big Three.

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