Fixture: (1) Rafael Nadal vs (4) Alexander Zverev
Date: 7 November 2020
Tournament: Rolex Paris Masters 2020
Venue: Paris, France
Category: ATP Masters 1000
Surface: Indoor Hardcourt
Prize money: €3,901,015
Match timing: Not before 4.30 pm local time, 9 pm IST
Live telecast: USA – ESPN / Tennis Channel | India – Sony Six / Sony Liv
Rafael Nadal vs Alexander Zverev
Top seed Rafael Nadal faces off against Alexander Zverev on Saturday for a place in the Closing of the Rolex Paris Pros. Nadal comes into the match on the back of a 10-match winning series, having triumphed at Roland Garros for a record-extending 13th period last month. However, the Spaniard has a famously underwhelming record in Paris and on indoor hardcourts in general, and he has had a few struggles this past week.
The World No. 2 overturned a one-set deficit in the first round against Feliciano Lopez, before following it up with a routine win over Jordan Thompson. In the quarterfinal, he faced an in-form Pablo Carreno Busta and needed to overturn yet another one-set deficit.
The 34-year-old eventually managed to subdue his compatriot’s ability and consistency, prevailing 4-6 7-5 6-1 to maintain his unbeaten run intact. Alexander Zverev meanwhile is dealing with a ton of off-court distractions right now. Soon after the announcement of his impending fatherhood with ex-girlfriend Brenda Patea, yet another ex-girlfriend, Olga’Olya’ Sharypova accused the German of physical abuse during the course of the relationship. Having rubbished the claims since Zverev hasn’t let the allegations affect him to the court. He has continued his 11-match winning streak, which includes a double name run in Cologne, this week in Paris.
The German faced a tough job against Adrian Mannarino from the next round, having to struggle for more than three hours before coming in a close three-setter. However, he wasn’t bothered too much by Stan Wawrinka from the quarterfinal on Friday, winning 6-3 7-6 despite apparently carrying an accident.
Rafael Nadal vs Alexander Zverev head-to-head
Nadal leads zverev head to head 5-1 in 6 matches, the Zverev got his first win against Nadal only in their game – at the 2019 ATP Finals.
Rafael Nadal vs Alexander Zverev prediction
Despite his off-court distractions, Alexander Zverev has appeared in top form thus far in Paris. He comes into the match against Rafael Nadal since the slight favorite, particularly after his two names in Cologne. The German did seem to be struggling with a groin injury against Wawrinka, but he climbed to the match and ended up dropping very comfortably. His function was consistent and his tendency to make errors was kept under control.
Zverev’s natural depth and power, especially in the backhand wing, have enabled him to take control of things early. He’s also been defending well, regaining several bullets against the Swiss Friday effortlessly. The function has come in handy for Nadal as well, who has struck 26 experts in his three matches. And while the Spaniard’s trademark topspin-laden forehand may not be firing on all cylinders yet, it’s been a significant weapon.
Nadal’s return to function, but has allowed him down on event this week. The Spaniard doesn’t usually enjoy playing indoor hard courts, but he’s shown no signs of fitness problems so far.
His tenacity and speedy movement also have been on full screen, and he’d be highly motivated to win his first Paris Masters title given the golden chance he’s.
Nadal would have the edge in a long and bodily experience, as this one claims to be. The result might boil down to a few tight minutes and nervy tiebreakers, and also the 20-time Grand Slam winner would be most people’s wager to come out on top in those scenarios.
Prediction: Rafael Nadal to win in two sets.