Rafael Nadal vs. Dominic Thiem Betting Preview
Where: Stade Roland Garros, Paris, France
When: Friday, June 9, 2017, 5:00 AM ET
TV Broadcast: Tennis Channel / NBC
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Betting on Rafael Nadal (-500)
Rafael Nadal sure didn’t need it but he got another huge break in his quest to lift his record 10th French Open crown. He was handed a free pass into the semifinals of the 2017 French Open after Pablo Carreno Busta retired in the second set from their last-eight clash with an abdominal injury. Nadal, who became just the fifth man to reach 10 semifinals at a single Grand Slam in the Open era, is now 22-1 on clay this year, which includes victories at the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters, the Barcelona Open and the Mutua Madrid Open.
Waiting in the next round for Nadal is talented youngster Dominic Thiem. Friday’s showdown will be their fourth meeting on clay this season. Nadal won their first two encounters in Madrid and Barcelona before Thiem pulled the rug on him in Rome last month. That being said, the Spaniard is still the odds-on favorite to triumph in this contest because of his excellent form. The 31-year-old has spent only about eight hours on court in this year’s French Open, dropping just 22 games in the process. Nadal’s victory against Carreno Busta was his 100th win in a best-of-five sets match on clay.
For Nadal to keep the momentum going this coming Friday, he will need to continue his outstanding return play. The world no. 4 leads the tournament in break points won with 33. Nadal will have his work cut out for him, however, against Thiem who is third in this year’s French Open in first serve points won. Thiem has won 84 percent (181-of-215) of his first serve points in this tournament thus far.
Betting on Dominic Thiem (+350)
If there’s one guy in the field, however, who can stop the King of Clay in his home turf, it’s got to be Dominic Thiem. As we have mentioned earlier, Thiem’s the only player to beat Nadal on clay this season. He destroyed the Spaniard in the quarterfinals of the Rome Masters, winning in straight sets, 6-4, 6-3.
Just like Nadal, Thiem has been playing some spectacular tennis here at Roland Garros. The 23-year-old has yet to drop a set in this year’s French Open. Even defending champion Novak Djokovic had no answer for him in the quarterfinals. Thiem handed Djokovic one of the worst losses of his illustrious Grand Slam career on Wednesday, 7-6 (5), 6-3, 6-0. That was only the ninth time Djokovic had lost a set to love in his career.
Thiem dominated Djokovic in every facet of the game, trumping him in winners (38-18), first serve win percentage (74-57) and receiving points won (49%-34%). Thiem will need the same kind of performance against Nadal who is hell-bent on securing the coveted La Decima this week. The Austrian is 2-4 in his career against the great Nadal with all six of their matches coming on the slow surface.
Nadal (-500) prevails in a five-set humdinger.
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