The D-day will soon arrive. Despite many fans dreading the day and hoping that they never have to witness it in their lives, there will be an end of the road for the four big gladiators of modern tennis. Roger Federer is 36. Rafael Nadal is 32. Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray are 31. Stan Wawrinka who has often teetered on the brink of entering the elite club is 33. Like it or not, a day will come where they will either lose their passion for the game or their bodies will simply break down. One must assume that with father time not on their side, that day is soon approaching.
But what next for the game after the four of them soon take their final bow? Looking at the quality of the crop of players along with their personalities to hold the attention of the masses, tennis surely looks ahead at a bleak future and could well lose its prestige and standing as one of the top sports across the globe.
One quick look at the current crop of players who are expected to lead tennis into the next generation and one would come to a conclusion that they are simply not up to the mark of carrying forward the legacy carved out by these behemoths of the game.
Alexander Zverev? Highly inconsistent and fails to deliver when the light shines the brightest.
Dominic Thiem? Very good on clay but has failed to show that he has the game to deliver on other surfaces.
Grigor Dimitrov? Has all the class, elegance, grace and talent but the discussion has often revolved around what he does in his personal life off the court rather than his performances on it.
The likes of Denis Shapovalov and Andrey Rublev are still very young and may well prove to be the ace in the card.
Neither do these players have the marketing potential to be truly global icons, but that is largely dependent on success which they enjoy on the court.
But when will that success come?
But with their each and every failure and inconsistency, men’s tennis might well face a big drought in the future, one which it might not be ready for.