The US Open concludes out in New York on Sunday evening when the Arthur Ashe Stadium provided the venue for the men’s final, which sees the man of the summer Daniil Medvedev taking on the legend of the game Rafael Nadal.
We saw a feisty women’s final on Saturday evening and this one should be just as competitive. Just like on Saturday we have someone looking for their first Grand Slam title in Medvedev and another experienced at winning them in Nadal.
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This has been a dream summer for Daniil Medvedev. Every tournament he has entered since Wimbledon he has made the final of it, winning the title in Cincinnati while falling one short in Washington and Montreal. He can crown an amazing few weeks in some style if he emulates Bianca Andreescu and claims his first Grand Slam title in this match. Like the Canadian before him, he goes in as the underdog but not without a chance.
You have to give Medvedev all the credit in the world for how he has gone here. You can tell by just looking at him that he is feeling the wear and tear of the summer but he has maintained a solid defence and good variety to get the job done. Adrenalin should get him through this final so we only have to consider whether he is good enough to win it. He’ll need to be at his best if he is going to come through.
The longer this tournament has gone on the more vulnerable Rafael Nadal has looked to me, but the time where he could be beat might have been and gone. For a couple of sets against Marin Cilic, Diego Schwartzman and Matteo Berrettini, Nadal looked there for the taking but the latter two bungled their opportunities while Cilic brought out a whole new level from the Spanish maestro, which might be a concern for Medvedev.
Nadal has only dropped one set on his way to this final so there will be some question marks if this one does go deep, but generally when he is in the final of a Grand Slam we get the best from him and a performance worthy of the occasion. Nadal has noticeably served much harder this fortnight and may need to do that here to set up some cheap points which could be needed.
These two men have met on one previous occasion and that came fairly recently as it was in the final of the ATP Masters 1000 event in Montreal last month. Nadal won 63 60 on that occasion but you sensed that the week before and the heavy schedule after the rain of that week caught up with the Russian a little. He will feel he can put up a better showing in this match, but he will absolutely need to if he is going to walk off with the title.
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I suspect this final will mirror the semi-final that Rafael Nadal played against Matteo Berrettini in that the first set will be very competitive and then the second and third ones less so in a competitive but ultimately comfortable victory for the Spaniard. There isn’t a huge amount of value in any of the regular match markets though which is making me move outside the box for a bet on the match.
There was only five aces in that final between these two in Montreal and I don’t expect an avalanche of them here either it has to be said. Marin Cilic and Matteo Berrettini are both bigger servers than Medvedev and they only hit 10 in four sets and nine in three respectively. We know that Nadal stands a mile back to receive serve against clean hitters so the chances of Medvedev clean acing him are not as high as against other opponents. Medvedev has a serious wingspan too so Nadal will need to push the lines for aces. If this is a three set match I don’t see more than 17.5 aces and I’m not convinced a four set one will cover it. I’ll play the under.
Back Under 17.5 aces for a 4/10 stake at 1.88 with 888sport