Who Will Win – Nadal or Medvedev?
The head-to-head comparison between Rafael Nadal and Daniil Medvedev is overwhelmingly in favour of the Spaniard. Nadal has played against Medvedev on three past occasions and has won all three times. (Take a look at the chart from tennistonic.com).
The players first met in the finals of the Rogers Cup in 2019. Nadal won that match with ease: the final scoreline read 6-3, 6-0. Their second meeting happened in the final of the US Open 2019. Nadal took the first two sets 7-5, 6-3 and appeared to be cruising to a facile straight sets win. But Medvedev had other ideas and pulled back to level the match at two sets all, winning the next two 7-5, 6-4. Nadal had to dig deep to close out the last set 6-4. The third and last meeting came at the year-end tournament last year, when Nadal prevailed in a three-set thriller, 6-7, 6-3, 7-6.
Match Analytics and Odds
Rafael Nadal is set to face Daniil Medvedev on Saturday, 21 November, in his bid to reach his third title at the ATP finals in London. Nadal began the tournament on an imperious note with a masterclass against Rublev, winning 6-3, 6-4. After the Spaniard lost in straight sets 6-7, 6-7 to his nemesis at the US Open, Dominic Thiem, his third league match against Tsitsipas on Thursday became a must-win. Nadal cruised through the first set 6-4 and appeared to be homing in on a straight sets victory at 4-5 in the second. Tsitsipas had a set point as Nadal stumbled in his service game. A rare display of nerves by Nadal saw him double-fault to hand the Greek defending champion the set and to push the match into a deciding third set. Ragged serving by both men in the early part of the third set resulted in three consecutive service breaks. But Nadal found his footing as the set wore on and another break saw him 5-2 up before he held serve to close out the match. On Saturday, Nadal will meet the man he beat in a thriller at the ATP finals in 2019. In a group clash between the two, Nadal lost the first set 6-7 and pulled it back to one-set all by winning the second 6-3. In a brilliant fightback, Nadal clawed his way back from a 1-5 deficit in the third set, saving a match point in the process. He eventually won 7-6 to keep a fresh slate against his Russian rival.
This time around, Nadal may not have it quite as easy against an in-form Medvedev who dispatched Alexander Zverev 6-3, 6-4 in his first league match and performed even better in his second game against world number one, Novak Djokovic, winning 6-3, 6-3. The difference between the men was in their quality of service. Medvedev held his own, quite comfortably, while taking apart Djokovic’s second service. The Russian who has stumbled after reaching the final of the US Open in 2019 (that he lost to his rival of Saturday, Rafael Nadal) has shown a new-found composure on the court as well as a degree of mental strength that bodes well for his upcoming semifinal.
Quite justifiably, the betting odds favour Medvedev at 8/13, while Rafa Nadal weighs in at 5/4.
Daniil Medvedev to win in three sets!