Australian Open Best Bets - Day 14: Men's Final
A dream final and a rematch of 2012’s epic, as Novak Djokovic aims to create history with his 7th Australian Open crown
What an Australian Open Final it promises to be on Sunday night on Rod Laver Arena as Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal battle it out for the 53rd time in their amazing rivalry. Djokovic edges the head-to-head 27-25 having won eight of their last 10 encounters including an incredible Wimbledon semi-final last year which the Serbian prevailed 10-8 in the fifth set. That scoreline can’t be replicated in Melbourne, with a super tiebreak (first to 10) introduced this year in the deciding set.
This will be Djokovic’s seventh appearance in the final at Melbourne Park where he is yet to lose and can become the first man of any era to win seven titles at the year’s first major. This will Nadal’s fifth trip to a final in Melbourne where he is 1-3, losing his last three appearances in the decider including the 2012 epic against Djokovic which last just shy of six hours.
Nadal came into the tournament with a question mark over his fitness having withdrawn from Brisbane and not played a competitive match since last year’s US Open semifinal where he was forced to retire. However, he’s yet to lose a set and has been on court for significantly less time than Djokovic.
Both men were utterly dominant in their respective semifinals and seem to be a level above anyone else in the world right now, which makes it hard to lean one way or another. We were on Djokovic in the futures market so it makes sense to lay off with Nadal so we will lean that way.
Key Stat: The favourite has won nine of the last 10 matches between Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal in straight sets. Djokovic has won eight of the 10 matches against Nadal.