TennisUs Open

US Open Betting: Nadal likely to be too strong for Berrettini in New York semi

September 5, 2019January 5th, 2022

It was one winner and one loss on Wednesday for our bets when Diego Schwartzman made Rafael Nadal go past the 150.5 minutes mark in their quarter final, but a typically odd performance from Gael Monfils saw the first wager denied.

Moving swiftly on to the semi finals and I’ll be slightly brief on the Daniil Medvedev versus Grigor Dimitrov clash, as this one is by and large guesswork as to whether or not two days off is enough for Medvedev’s body to recover from its heavy workload or not.

Sporting tape all over his body and by his own admission about to retire had he lost the opening set to Stan Wawrinka in the quarter finals, Medvedev once again found the energy from somewhere, but can he keep on doing it?

Sickness and injury has been a bit of a running theme this tournament and no doubt some of that is down to the workload the players operate under, with Wawrinka another one to have cited a flu bug as one reason for his loss to Medvedev in what became a battle of the fittest.

“Yes, I was sick,” Wawrinka said. “I was playing with what I had today.”

It could be, as Rafa Nadal was also reportedly ill before his match with Schwartzman that Dimitrov and Berrettini are the fittest two left in this event and that gives them a fighting chance.

Dimitrov has been pretty lucky in his run this week in that Andreas Seppi was coming back from hip infiltration, Borna Coric withdrew and Roger Federer had a back injury, but at least the Bulgarian looks like he’s playing okay again now.

On the basis that Dimitrov has barely played a significant amount of tennis this past few months – only 11 matches since the French Open – while Medvedev has played more than that since the Montreal final (29 since the French Open) you’d have to give Dimitrov a shot.

The most likely outcome here is that the two days off will be enough for Medvedev, whose defensive coverage and flat hitting will be too much for Dimitrov and perhaps the -1.5 sets on the Russian at 2.04 is the way to go here, but it’s not a match to bet on for me.

We’ve had a reasonable profit so far at the US Open again and I’m not really seeing any great opportunities to increase that on semi finals day, with Rafael Nadal highly likely to see off Matteo Berrettini with a bit to spare – if he’s fit.

Nadal retired in the semi finals here in New York a year ago and it’s not beyond the realms of possibility that lightning could strike twice.

The Spaniard reportedly told the Spanish journalists after the Schwartzman match that he had stomach issues before the match started and that led to dehydration and cramps, hence the need for salt tablets.

It doesn’t seem as big an issue by any means for Nadal as his injury was last year in New York (he ended up finishing his season in that semi final against Del Potro) but if it’s a similar bug to Wawrinka’s perhaps it could have a bearing on the outcome.

All things being equal it’s hard to see what Berrettini can do against a fit Nadal and even more so in conditions that are expected to be very windy indeed (and with a chance of rain).

The forecast is suggesting 28kph winds and that surely won’t hinder Nadal, who’s used to playing in the wind regularly back home in Majorca and who plays with a lot of margin with his heavy top spin.

It may well cause problems for Berrettini on serve and in his movement though, with strong winds changing the direction of the ball and requiring nimble feet to adjust to the shot.

I wouldn’t class Berrettini as the nimblest guy on tour and strong wind can only harm his chances as it memorably did to Tomas Berdych against Andy Murray in the 2012 semi final here.

Even without the wind it’s a massive ask for Berrettini – who showed a lot of nerves against Monfils – to rock up in a first major semi final on Ashe and beat Nadal, having never faced the unique play style of the Spaniard before.

Nadal will be strongly fancying his chances of a 19th slam title this tournament now and he’s never failed to land one on the four previous occasions that he’s made a major semi final and Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer were no longer in the draw.

Technically, it’s easy to see the relatively weak backhand of Berrettini getting a severe test from the Nadal forehand and it doesn’t seem likely that the Italian – unless he serves insanely well – will get that many chances to get in position to use his big weapon of the forehand.

Unless Nadal is struggling physically (and it’s hard to count that out this US Open) I’d expect a similarly one-sided affair here to the 2017 final when Nadal routinely dismissed a similar sort of player to Berrettini in Kevin Anderson 3-0 without facing a break point.

Whether it’s much betting value is certainly debatable, but 3-0 to Nadal at 1.57 has to be the bet here if we’re having one at all.


Best Bet


1 point win Nadal to beat Berrettini 3-0 at 1.57