Number two seed Rafael Nadal plays Aussie John Millman in their 2019 US Open opener on August on Tuesday, August 27 with the match to begin at 7 pm local time (or 12 midnight BST). Get the latest Rafael Nadal v John Millman live streaming options, preview and predictions here.
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Rafael Nadal v John Millman Head to Head
The two players have met once, in the opening round of Wimbledon in 2017. Nadal won that relatively easily in straight sets.
Nadal Looks to Begin US Open Campaign Healthy & Strong
Three-time US Open champion Rafael Nadal comes to New York at the back of an impressive season, winning the French Open, being an Australian Open finalist and performing well on all surfaces. Most recently, Nadal won the ATP Masters 1000 in Montreal, with it being the first time that he has won back-to-back titles on hard courts.
While the Spaniard has neither of Novak Djokovic or Roger Federer in his half, he does have some dangerous challengers like Dominic Thiem, Karen Khachanov, Alexander Zverev and Stefanos Tsitsipas among others, all of whom he will be wary about as he makes a bid for a nineteenth grand slam title.
Nadal will not have fond memories of the 2018 US Open where he had to withdraw with injury against Juan Martin del Potro in the semi-finals, a recurring knee issue that saw him out of action for the rest of the year.
The Spaniard has talked about how he has paced his season well, and feels rested and healthy at the moment, both of which are crucial for his success at the last major of the year.
Millman Looking For A 2018 Repeat?
Australian John Millman has been on the circuit for a decade and had a career full of promise, injuries, intermittent surprising results and disappointments.
Millman is best known for defeating Roger Federer in the fourth round of the 2018 US Open and in turn preventing a quarter-final matchup between Federer and Novak Djokovic, in a match where Millman played some of the best tennis of his life to win in four sets, in some very humid conditions at the Arthur Ashe Stadium under lights.
The quarter-final run at the US Open last year saw Millman reach a career high ranking of 33 on the ATP tour, which has since fallen to number 67 in the world at the moment.
With a strong baseline game, and a measured temperament, Millman started his career at the Challenger level but made his way to the main tour at a time when Australian tennis was in transition mode in the post Lleyton Hewitt, Pat Rafter era. Repetitive shoulder and back issues have been a concern through most of his career, impairing the ability at times to be more consistent on the tour.
2019 thus far has not been a favorable season for the Aussie, with a round of 32 at Wimbledon being his best result thus far. He will look to reverse his fortunes, now back in New York again.
Nadal v Millman Predictions & Tips
This match has been highlighted as a potential “must watch”, but much of that is because of the result the Aussie had against Federer in the fourth round last year. While Millman played an excellent match, the Swiss was also troubled by the conditions and the New York heat and humidity.
Nadal has been extremely consistent at all slams in recent times and also been in the best of form of late. With the somewhat slower courts at the Open favoring him in recent years, he definitely starts as a strong favorite not only against Millman, but for the fortnight.
Millman will have his hands full, and will need to perform at a very high level throughout to make a match of it. Expect some good rallies, but hard to envision any other outcome except a straight sets Nadal victory..
Tip: Nadal to win in three sets: 1/4 (888Sport)