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Novak Djokovic v Rafael Nadal Betting Odds & Predictions

Nadal and Djokovic renew rivalry

Rafael Nadal (Spain)

Novak Djokovic v Rafael Nadal Preview – 13th July, 2018

Well, here we go then. With Roger Federer having suffered a shock exit at the hands of Kevin Anderson in the quarter finals from the other side of the draw, the winner of this epic semi-final will be the favourite to get their hands on the Wimbledon title this year. We may have been denied a potential Nadal v Federer final rematch, but Novak Djokovic v Rafael Nadal predictions is going to be perhaps the highlight of the entire tournament.

Djokovic getting back to his best?

Djokovic looks to have gotten some of that old fire back in his belly. He started Wimbledon as the world number 21 and has collected only three titles in about two years. So there was a lot of doubt about his levels coming into this edition of Wimbledon and rightly so. The old Djokovic, the one who just a couple of years ago was the holder of all four Grand Slam titles had been missing. But there have been signs in his wins over Kyle Edmund and Karen Khachanov, two of the best young players on the circuit, that he is getting back to his best.

With Djokovic looking pretty fired up we will look over three sets and stick at four sets for 6/4 odds with Betfred* (Betting Odds were taken from 12th July, 2018 at 6:12 p.m.). The passion, the aggression and the confidence seems to have flooded back into his game at SW19 this season and he is going to need all of in trying to take down Nadal. Djokovic is a three-time Wimbledon Champion and we have seen good stuff from him over the last week or so, only dropping a set against Edmund and Kei Nishikori then in the quarter finals.

Wimbledon 2018 Djokovic v Nadal Infographic

Nadal survives first big test

Nadal was on fire through the first four rounds not dropping a set at all but then he bumped into Argentine Juan Martin del Potro in the quarter finals. That turned into an epic scrap and Nadal was on the ropes in it. After taking the opening set, the Spaniard then found himself 2-1 down and in considerable trouble. But Nadal is a hard man to break even at that point and he battled his way back to win the final two sets both by a 6-4 score. That was his first real test at the tournament and even though he had his struggles, he showed that tremendous character of his to come back.

Nadal is the current world number one and is seeded two for Wimbledon. That match against Del Potro was almost a five-hour game and that will have taken something big out of Nadal. This is his first semi-final at Wimbledon since 2011 and no doubt he will be fired up with Federer having fallen by the wayside. Nadal is a two-time winner of Wimbledon collecting the title in 2008 and 2010. Djokovic is the biggest challenge standing between him and getting a third. Across the course of the year, he has carried much better form than Djokovic but there should only be fine margins in this one.

Head to head

The head to head is just about as close as it can get with Djokovic 26-25 up over Nadal from their previous meetings. They have met once this year and that was on clay back in Rome which Nadal won in straight sets. The Spaniard has won the last two meetings against Nadal. But they were both on clay. Djokovic had won the seven previous games between the two before that.

Remarkably they don’t have much history between them on grass, with one meeting at Queens in 2008 which was won by Nadal, sandwiching two Wimbledon meetings. The first one was in 2007 which Nadal won as Djokovic retired in the third set. They also met at Wimbledon 2011 and it was Djokovic who came out on top in that one in four sets. For all of their many meetings, just two of their previous matches have gone to five sets.

Prediction

This is going to be close. We are close to seeing Djokovic back at his best but this is far and away his biggest challenge of the tournament so far. Nadal had that really testing time against Del Potro in the last round, but the depths of his energy seems to know no bounds. Arguably he is the better of the two this year with his four titles to none from Djokovic. We are sticking with Nadal and will take him at 3-1 in set betting at 4/1 odds* (Betting Odds were taken from 12th July, 2018 at 6:12 p.m.).


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