Nadal vs Khachanov (By: Stanioooo)
QF match in Indian Wells between Rafael Nadal and Karen Khachanov.
These two players had a lot of matches in the last two years and Nadal won all of them, maybe a little bit surprisingly giving Khachanov only one set in all of them(in their last match in US Open won by Nadal 3:1).
If we exlcude their H2H and look only on their form during 2019 so far, Nadal has the edge without a doubt. Khachanov's results are more than mediocre losing early in Doha, in the 3rd round in Melbourne, in the beginning of the tournaments in Sofia, Rotterdam and Dubai..Maybe it's not only because of poor form, but also because he changed his racquet in the beginning of the season. In Indian Wells he is back to the racquet he used during the last season and he looks like he feels it much better and the results proved it after wins against Lopez, Rublev and Isner. I watched his match against Isner and he made two very different sets. In the first one he wins his serve without any problems, while Isner often went to holds to 30 or deuces and logically he was broken in the end. In the second Isner was the one who won his serve without much problems making a lot of aces, while Khachanov had to save even a few break points and not one or two times Isner outplayed him in rallies from the baseline. In the tiebreak there was one player and it was Karen who won it comfortably with 7:1. I feel like Karen still doesn't feel so comfartable in the rallies from the baseline and his serve is not so productive winning a lot of easy points with it. His confidence is rising, but I am not sure if he will be even close to the player in US Open 2018, who made Rafa to show his absolute best to win in 4 sets.
What to talk about Rafa..final in Australian Open after cruising all of his opponents in straight sets before Djokovic did the same in the final. Now it's time for Rafa to play in another tournament which is from one of the highest cathegory- ATP 1000 and we can see one very motivated Nadal, this time even to grab the trophy. Djokovic was eliminated and all of the audience expect Nadal and Federer to progress to the semifinals and to see another big match between these two tennis gods.Nadal outplayed in straight sets every single of his opponents(Donaldson, Schwartzman and Krajinovic) and in these matches I saw Rafa to be in really imperious form. His play from the baseline is absolutely flawless, his serve works better and better..I see only Federer in possible SF match as an opponent who can stop him right now, although if it happens, Nadal will be a slight favorite for me. The high bounce of the balls on these new courts in Indian Wells looks like suits Nadal extremely well for his style and he makes dozens of winners from the bottom of the court.
I can't see anything else than a straight-sets win for Rafa Nadal in this match. Even when I saw the best by both of them in US Open during the last season, Khachanov was not able to take more than a set, what to talk about now, when Rafa's form is also very high, while Khachanov's level is not even close to the one in New York 2018. Maybe one of the sets will go into 7:5 or 7:6 for Rafa if Khachanov is stable on serve or Nadal makes a weak serve game, but I highly doubt Nadal will have to play three sets tonight. We will want to spend the less time he can on the court before the highly expected match against Roger. To impress the Swiss with current top form is also important part!
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Nadal vs Khachanov prediction
|Nadal -1.5 sets AH||Pinnacle||1.62||10||2-0 WON (+6.2 units)|