The Spaniard enters his title defence without wins and doubts over his match fitness however never rule out the defending champion.
Nadal’s Path to the Final (Ranking/Seeding)
R1: Jack Draper | H2H: First Meeting
R2: Brandon Nakashima | H2H: First Meeting
R3: Yoshihito Nishioka  | H2H: Nadal leads 2-0
R4: Frances Tiafoe  | H2H: Nadal leads 2-1
QF: Daniil Medvedev  | H2H: Nadal leads 5-1
SF: Stefanos Tsitsipas  | H2H: Nadal leads 7-2
F: Casper Ruud  | H2H: Nadal leads 2-0
Nadal is definitely a draw loser here with the Spaniard being handed a difficult draw especially with in-form players such as Jack Draper and Brandon Nakashima in the opening two rounds. In the second week Nadal will have to deal with the big serve of Frances Tiafoe and an Australian Open final rematch with Daniil Medvedev could await in the last eight. Overall Nadal will have to be on the top of his game to have a chance of reaching the final let alone going all the way.
Ruud will look to play his way into the tournament having not done off-season training and entering the first Grand Slam of the season with limited match practice.
Ruud’s Path to the Final (Ranking/Seeding)
R1: Tomas Machac | H2H: First Meeting
R2: Jenson Brooksby | H2H: Ruud leads 1-0
R3: Alejandro Davidovich Fokina  | H2H: Tied at 1-1
R4: Matteo Berrettini  | H2H: Ruud leads 4-3
QF: Taylor Fritz  | H2H: Ruud leads 1-0
SF: Novak Djokovic  | H2H: Djokovic leads 4-0
F: Rafael Nadal  | H2H: Nadal leads 2-0
Ruud will be happy with his first week draw as he can work his way through the tournament with only Jenson Brooksby providing a significant test. However the second week is brutal with Matteo Berrettini in the last 16 with Ruud recently losing to the Italian at the United Cup. Then an in-form Taylor Fritz would await in the last eight before nine-time champion Novak Djokovic being a significant obstacle en route to the final. The Norwegian would be happy with a second week outing here although there is motivation of being world number one should he reach the latter stages in Melbourne.
Tsitsipas enters the Australian Open in good form with four good victories over world class opposition and will look to make the final in Melbourne for the first time.
Tsitsipas’s Path to the Final (Ranking/Seeding)
R1: Quentin Halys | H2H: Alcaraz leads 1-0
R2: Rinky Hijikata [WC] | H2H: First Meeting
R3: Botic Van De Zandschulp  | H2H: First Meeting
R4: Jannik Sinner  | H2H: Tsitsipas leads 4-1
QF: Felix Auger-Aliassime  | H2H: Tsitsipas leads 5-3
SF: Rafael Nadal  | H2H: Nadal leads 7-2
F: Casper Ruud  | H2H: Tied at 1-1
In general Tsitsipas will be pleased with his draw although Quentin Halys’ big serving will provide Tsitsipas with a tough opening round test. A last 16 meeting with Jannik Sinner could be interesting although Tsitsipas won their meeting last year comfortably and then a last eight clash with Felix Auger-Aliassime could be decisive in terms of who could reach the final. Overall Tsitsipas will fancy his chances of reaching a first Australian Open final and who know maybe go all the way to claim his maiden Grand Slam title.
R4: Pablo Carreno Busta  | H2H: Djokovic leads 4-2
QF: Andrey Rublev  | H2H: Djokovic leads 2-1
SF: Casper Ruud  | H2H: Djokovic leads 4-0
F: Rafael Nadal  | H2H: Djokovic leads 30-29
Djokovic will be delighted with his draw as on paper he won’t have to waste too much energy and can take on the second week with maximum strength. A quarter-final against Andrey Rublev could pose it’s problems and Casper Ruud may take a couple of sets off the nine-time champion. Ultimately though Djokovic is favourite to claim his tenth Australian Open title and create more history in Melbourne.
The Australian Open takes place between 16-29 January (GMT +11 hours).
We may receive compensation for products purchased via affiliate links on this website
Privacy & Cookies Policy
Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These cookies do not store any personal information.
Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website.