Rafael Nadal vs Roger Federer ATP Moneyline Picks - 7/12/2019
Rafael Nadal vs Roger Federer
7 am EST, 11th July 2019
Another Grand Slam semifinals with pretty much the same faces being represented in it. It is becoming ridiculous how long these three players are dominating the men's tennis. Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic are ranked No.1, No.2 and No.3 in Grand Slam titles won (all-time). They won 49 out of last 57 Majors and were represented in 56 of 58 finals of those tournaments and we can go on and on with stats similar to those.
In the second semifinal, we will see another classic rivalry match between Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer. A couple of years ago, the Swiss player would be considered as a big favorite over his rival on the grass court, but that is not the case at the moment. Rafael Nadal improved so much on this surface in previous years and become a serious competition to Federer and Djokovic in Wimbledon. Organizers making the surface slightly slower did help a lot as well. Especially this year, when he had absolutely no problem with the big servers like in some previous editions. Let's take the quarterfinal match for example. Sam Querrey was in great form coming into the match and is a prototype of a player that would cause a lot of issues for Rafa only a couple of years ago on the grass. But not this time. Rafa won in straight sets, winning an astonishing 45% of all the returning points and breaking Sam's serve 6 times in the match.
Surprisingly, Federer had more problems in this tournament then Nadal. He had to climb back from 0-1 twice so far. First time in the first round vs Lloyd Harris and the second time against Kei Nishikori in previous one. Can't really blame him much there. Nishikori came out firing, barely missing a shot in the first couple of games. But later on, Federer found a way to counter that and especially take advantage of Kei's weak serve. Unlike Roger, Japanese player was unable to get any free points off of his serve, which helped his opponent to get back into the match and prevail in the end
There are rare rivalries, where opponents know each other so well. This will be already 40th match between them two. Spaniard is winning the tie 24-15 at the moment, but most of that lead was built on clay courts, where Nadal is dominating 15-2. His topspin forehand has a big impact on that surface because the bounce of the ball is so extreme. It makes this matchup very difficult for Federer because he is unable to hit his single-handed backhand as well, with the ball bouncing almost up to his shoulders. On the other surfaces, topspin doesn't have as much effect and that changes dynamics of the entire match. Grass courts have the lowest bounce and are giving the best chance to Federer to play his best game vs Nadal. This will be their 4th meeting on the grass courts. All 3 previous (2-1 Federer) were deciding the Wimbledon champion.
Betting odds & prediction
Rafael Nadal opening as a favorite was a small surprise for me. Money not coming on Roger as an underdog was a shock. I thought that they should be about even, considering the speed of the surface that suits Nadal better this year. But I still expected the public to be all over Federer if something like that happens. Total is currently sitting at 41, which is spot on. I expect a competitive match with 5 sets being a possibility. But considering that breaks are easier to come by in this tournament, sets are not going the distance very often, making over bets more difficult to cash in 4 sets. Love the way Rafa played so far, but this is still Roger's backyard.
Guy's Pick: Roger Federer +124
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