Federer the greatest of all time – Laver

Rod Laver believes 20-time grand slam champion Roger Federer is the greatest player ever.

Australian Open champion Roger Federer   -  Getty Images

Australian Open champion Roger Federer is the greatest player of all time, according to Rod Laver.

Federer became the first man to win 20 grand slams with his five-set victory over Marin Cilic in the final in Melbourne on Sunday.

The Swiss star is widely considered the best of all time and Laver – the 11-time grand slam champion who also belongs in that group – said Federer deserved to be remembered as the greatest.

"For me, I think Roger Federer is certainly the greatest player that has come along," Laver told SEN on Monday.

"Yes, we've got lots of great players, you look at [Rafael] Nadal with a record that says I've just won 10 French Opens and you can't just push that under the mat.

"But I think Roger plays his greatest tennis on the big occasions, on any surface. He's stood the test of time. That's probably the one thing that puts you in that category of the best ever and I think that's one of the things he's done."

Laver was in attendance to watch Federer win his sixth Australian Open, equalling the record held by Roy Emerson and Novak Djokovic.

The 79-year-old was seen taking photos of a crying Federer during the post-match presentation.

Laver added: "It's just unusual to see a wonderful champion like that win at age 36, after seven tough matches, you just marvel at his tenacity.

"He just seems like he's floating all around the court, he's not running. That's something else."

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