Ranking Roger Federer’s 8 Wimbledon titles from worst to best
The Swiss master has defeated icons such as Nadal, Murray and Roddick on his way to becoming the most successful male player in SW19 history.
8. Marin Cilic, 6–3, 6–1, 6–4 (2017)
Cilic’s mental and physical capitulation meant the moment when Federer secured his eighth Wimbledon title, at the remarkable age of 36, did not quite have the zeal one might have been expected heading into the match.
The Swiss master simply wasn’t tested. He didn’t have to play particularly well to win, while the general lack of competitiveness robbed the match – and, crucially, the Centre Court crowd – of any sense of occasion.
Federer won’t care about any of that, of course. And neither should he.
7. Andy Roddick, 6–2, 7–6, 6–4 (2005)
He was significantly tested by Roddick a year earlier – more on that shortly – but 12 months later Federer had elevated his game to a standard that the American simply couldn’t keep up with.
Federer won comfortably to clinch his third successive Wimbledon title, joining Rod Laver and Pete Sampras as the only Open-Era players to do so.
6. Rafael Nadal, 6–0, 7–6, 6–7, 6–3 (2006)
The year that was statistically the best of his career was also when his era-defining rivalry with Nadal truly began.
Despite already being a two-time French Open winner – the second of which had come against Federer a few weeks earlier – the then-20-year-old Spaniard was still honing his game on grass.
And while he was clearly no mug, he was nowhere near the required level to trouble Federer, who reeled off a reasonably easy win to claim his fourth successive victory at the All England Club.
5. Mark Philippoussis, 7-6, 6-2, 7-6 (2003)
It’s amusing and ridiculous to think now, but there were doubts about Federer’s temperament heading into this tournament, after the then-21-year-old had bombed out of the Australian and French Open early doors.
But a maiden grass-court title at the Gary Weber Open in Halle set him up nicely for SW19, and he duly delivered, producing an impeccable performance against the unseeded Philippoussis in the final to win his first major.
Superb tennis aside, it’s enjoyable to look back on the footage to see the difference between Federer now and then, with the immaculate, suave superstar replaced with a pudgy-faced kid sporting baggy clothes and a dubious ponytail-stubble combo.
4. Andy Roddick, 4–6, 7–5, 7–6, 6–4 (2004)
The defending champion and top seed was given a real scare by Roddick in this one.
After splitting the first two sets, the powerful American was playing the better tennis, and went up a break in the third.
But Federer, who had appeared deflated throughout, was saved by the rain.
He obviously used the weather delay to regroup because, when play resumed, he broke back, won the subsequent tie-break and went on to clinch the high-quality match in four sets.
In his post-match interview, which took place on Centre Court, the affable Roddick delivered one of sport’s finest ever runner-up quotes: "I threw the kitchen sink at him, but he went to the bathroom and got his tub."
3. Andy Murray, 4–6, 7–5, 6–3, 6–4 (2012)
It was impressive how Federer, an expert at complimenting himself while also appearing humble, kept his celebrations low-key out of respect for the tearful Murray.
The Swiss had long enjoyed home support on Centre Court, but with the prospect of a British male winning Wimbledon for the first time since Fred Perry, those in attendance were naturally supporting the Scot.
That probably spurred Federer on, while he was also once again helped by the rain after Murray had played the better tennis in the first two sets.
But the closing of the roof effectively made the final an indoor contest – conditions that were favourable to Federer, who raised his game brilliantly once play resumed.
After breaking Murray early in the third set in a game which lasted for 20 minutes, Federer cantered to his seventh SW19 title and first in three years.
"It feels like it’s never left me," humblebragged the champion afterwards.
2. Rafael Nadal, 7–6, 4–6, 7–6, 2–6, 6–2 (2007)
This match would be remembered as one of the greatest grand slam finals of all time had it not been superseded by the same two players, at the same tournament, 12 months later.
Nadal had improved on grass since reaching his maiden Wimbledon final the previous year, and, in truth, played the better tennis for most of the match.
But Federer kept his nose in front by nicking two tie-breaks.
Nadal took the match to a fifth set, and had a couple of break points early on, but the four-time defending champion held him off.
Then, with Nadal struggling physically, Federer broke twice to seal his fifth successive Championship.
The match was significant for two reasons. Firstly, it showed that Nadal could seriously threaten Federer’s dominance on grass, a feat the Spaniard duly achieved the following year in iconic circumstances.
It also represented the start of Nadal becoming the dominant player in the pair’s rivalry, with Federer not beating him in another grand slam match until the 2017 Australian Open final.
1. Andy Roddick, 5–7, 7–6, 7–6, 3–6, 16–14 (2009)
With the injured Nadal unable to defend his title, Federer – a couple of weeks on from winning his first French Open – was primed to not just reclaim his title, but also overtake Pete Sampras’ haul of 14 grand slam titles in the process.
Standing in his way was an old adversary: Andy Roddick, who had defeated Andy Murray in the semi-finals to give himself one last shot at SW19 glory.
Federer, as with many other examples on this list, showed he is as much of a fighter as he is a finesse player, stealing the second set on a tie-break that he'd been trailing 6-2.
Roddick dug deep to take the match into a remarkable fifth set, where no break points where exchanged until Federer found himself 15-40 down with the match poised at 8-8.
Federer, as he so often does, got himself out of trouble, and eventually broke Roddick at 15-14 – the first time he had done so all match, remarkably – to clinch the title and surpass Sampras.
Unlike his maiden triumph six years earlier, Federer was by this point the pristine brand ambassador that he remains today.
Upon winning the match, he slipped on a Nike jacket that was already embroidered with the number 15. Handy.
What is Roger Federer's fastest serve?
Roger Federer fastest serve ever is 143mph, which he recorded at the Halle Open in 2010.