| 2002: Australian Open + Roland Garros |
There are four Open era years (1976, 1998, 2002 & 2003) when two out of four Grand Slam crowns went to players who never won other major before or after. The 2002 year is special to some degree, it’s tough comparing that year to 1976 when Australian Open was negatively way beyond other three slams in terms of the prestige. A comparison to the years 1998 & 2003 also doesn’t make sense because maiden major titles in those years got really great players, the future Nos. 1 in the world… Thomas Johansson and Albert Costa stunned the tennis world in 2002, and there’s an analogy between these two players: both born in 1975 actually with the same height & weight throughout careers; before achieving the biggest successes they had never advanced past the Grand Slam quarterfinals, in 24 & 25 attempts respectively; even though their 2002 triumphs were surprising, they showed a couple of years earlier a distinctive potential capturing big titles – Johansson triumphed in Montreal ’99, Costa in Hamburg ’98; finally, both guys despite a negative doubles record (Johansson 76-98, Costa: 30-57) managed to get Olympic medals in doubles (Johansson silver in 2008, Costa bronze in 2000).
I’ll be adding only French Opens to the end of May.
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