Top seed Rafael Nadal plays Argentine Guido Pella in the third round of the ATP Masters 1000 in Montreal on Thursday August 8 with the encounter expected to begin at 6.30 pm local time (or 11.30 pm BST). You can find the Rafael Nadal v Guido Pella live streaming options, preview and predictions here.
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Rafael Nadal v Guido Pella Head to Head
The two players have met three times with Nadal winning on all occasions. They last met in Monte Carlo earlier this year with Nadal winning a close first set in a tie-breaker and a comfortable second set. They have also met at Roland Garros last year, and at Indian Wells the year before. The world number two won in straight sets both times.
Nadal Begins Title Defense With Stern Test
World number two Rafael Nadal began his Rogers Cup defense with a tricky match against Briton Dan Evans. Although he eventually won in straight sets 7-6(8-6), 6-4, it was not without its moments.
Evans broke the Nadal serve early and had set points in the tie-breaker, but the experienced and wily eighteen time grand slam winner fought back whenever down. Another seesaw second set followed, but the Spaniard ensured it was always within his control.
The defending champion will be looking for a deep run this week in Montreal, giving himself much needed practice and confidence ahead of the last grand slam of the year in New York later this month. As the season moves well into the second half, the transition to the hard courts have posed their fair challenges to the world number two from a fitness and injury perspective.
However, he seems to have managed his workload better this year, and arrives in Canada reportedly free of any injury concerns.
Pella in Midst of Career High
Argentine Guido Pella is in the midst of a very good year, that has seen him break into the top 30 of the ATP rankings. He has had successful runs on the ATP tour, predominantly on clay during the South American clay swing, as well as the European clay court season. A good baseliner, Pella has a game that is very well suited to the slower surfaces.
However, gritty performances on the grass courts at Wimbledon saw him qualify for the quarter-finals of a major for the first time defeating Milos Raonic and Kevin Anderson, both former Wimbledon finalists.
The Argentine had a convincing first round win here in Montreal against David Goffin before a tight second round match against Radu Albot, which he won in a final set tiebreak.
Rafael Nadal v Guido Pella Predictions & Tips
The top seed will definitely begin as a favorite, but Pella has been strong on all surfaces this year, and is currently high on confidence. Nadal looked a little rusty in his opener, but will only get sharper as the tournament progresses. The match will largely depend on how Pella handles the explosive Nadal shot making, particularly the forehand.
Expect some good rallies in the match with a straight set win for Nadal the most likely outcome.
Tip: Nadal to win in two sets: 1/3 (888Sport)