Tennis Tips: Back Nadal to cruise in an 11/2 Australian Open punt

Interesting price on that Rafa, no doubt about it

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The hometown crowd will have plenty to cheer about on Day 2 of the Australian Open as Aussie players Ashleigh Barty, Alex De Minaur, Sam Stosur and Astra Sharma are all in action. Spanish players Rafael Nadal and Garbine Muguruza and Russians Daniil Medvedev and Andrey Rublev also get their campaigns underway Monday night/Tuesday morning GMT in what should be a great day of tennis.

Azarenka, Barty, Muguruza to all win 2-0 – 3/2

Ashleigh Barty and Garbine Muguruza prepared for the Australian Open by facing off in the Yarra Valley Classic final. Barty had not played in almost a year prior to the start of the tournament but showed no signs of rustiness as she beat Muguruza in straight sets.

Despite not picking up the trophy, the Spaniard still looked in great shape as she looks to make the Australian Open final for the second year in a row.

After taking a break from tennis Victoria Azarenka enjoyed a successful comeback in 2020, reaching the final of the US Open. She missed last year’s edition of this tournament, so will be looking to make a statement on her return.

Expect all three women to pick up straight-set wins.

Victoria Azarenka

Maria Sakkari – Quarter 2 Winner – 11/2

2020 was a breakthrough year for Maria Sakkari. After reaching the fourth round of both the Australian Open and the US Open, she broke into the Top 20 for the first time in her career. That run of form has continued into 2021 as she reached the semi-final stage of the Grampians Trophy warm-up tournament, narrowly losing out to Annet Kontaveit in a third set tie break.

She’s been handed a nice draw for this year’s tournament. Her first two rounds should be straight-forward and will prepare her for potential matches against Victoria Azarenka, Elina Svitolina and Sofia Kenin. While these matches will be challenging, she has the game to take the bigger names on.

Medvedev Match Games – Under 31.5, Tsitsipas Match Games – Under 30.5, Nadal Match Games – Under 26.511/2

It’s going to be a tough task to stop Novak Djokovic from picking up his ninth Australian Open trophy but, if anyone is likely to do it, it could be one of these men.

Daniil Medvedev has yet to win a Grand Slam but is fresh from leading Russia to victory in the ATP Cup. This, along with his World Tour Finals trophy, should add to his confidence and make him even hungrier to lift a Grand Slam trophy.

Tsitsipas is another young player itching to get his first Grand Slam. His two ATP Cup straight-sets victories should set him up nicely for his match against French veteran Gilles Simon.

While Rafael Nadal withdrew from the ATP Cup to rest a back injury, he should have enough to get past Laslo Djere but it will be interesting to see how he progresses after that.

Medvedev, Tstisipas and Nadal should all win in straight sets, playing as few games as possible.

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