Nadal vs Sock: the return of the King
Rafael Nadal returns to the courts on 4 August. In the second round of the Citi Open in Washington, he goes against Jack Sock. Will the King of Clay get a landslide victory? We made a prediction for this match, which you can find below.
Nadal was about to win another title at Roland Garros, but this year he was stopped by Novak Djokovic. Rafa was very upset and decided to take a time out. The Spaniard did not even go to Wimbledon but decided to prepare for the US Open instead. This is the Major that he has won more times than Djokovic (4 against 3).
Surprisingly, this will be the first appearance of Nadal at the Washington Open in the entire career of the 35-year-old tennis player. But it is an important part of his preparation for the US Open.
Sock managed to return to the top 200 of the ATP world rankings, but this, of course, is not the result that the American player is counting on. Once Jack was the World №8, so he has big ambitions.
The American's best performance in the 2021 tour was at the Little Rock Challenger, which Jack won. However, Jack might have been eliminated already in the first round of the Washington Open. His opponent, Yoshihito Nishioka got injured and withdrew while the score was 7-6, 0-6.
Jack played tie-breaks in his last four matches.
In the last four matches of Sock, at least ten games were played in the first set.
For Nadal, this will be the first match after quite a long break. It is unlikely that the Spaniard will crush his opponent. For Rafa it is important to get in shape, so he will not take big risks. Most likely, Nadal will defeat the opponent on class, but Sock will probably keep his serve, which is rather powerful. That is why we believe that Jack can maintain the positive handicap.
Our prediction - handicap (+5.5) games to Jack Sock.
Prediction: Handicap (+5,5) to Sock
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Sock has never defeated Nadal, but when he was in his prime, the American regularly caused problems for the Spaniard. For example, in 3 out of 5 head-to-head matches, he won one set. We believe that at the home tournament Jack will be able to put up a fight.
Second wager - total over 19.5 games.