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Nadal’s form of late hadn’t been great but still we expect the defending champions to breeze past this round 2 matchup against a modest opponent like McDonald. Below is a preview of this match and some betting predictions.
These odds from Ladbrokes were correct at the time of writing
Rafael Nadal vs Mackenzie McDonald – Match Predictions
Defending champion Nadal’s form had been in decline in recent months. Still he should have more than enough to secure a quick win in this match against the world number 65 Mackenzie McDonald. Now a closer look at our tennis predictions for this game:
Nadal to win 3:0
In round 1 Nadal dropped a set against the aggressive young Brit Draper. He still won comfortably in the end – 7:5 2:6 6:4 6:1 to record his first win of 2023. Nadal’s movement on the court was good in the match and he was hitting the ball pretty well too.
The defending champion has been given much tougher bracket of the draw than anticipated and the coming round 2 clash is likely to be his one and only ‘easier’ game. With that in mind Nadal will be eager to finish the job as quickly as possible so we predict he will win without dropping a set.
Total games: Under 31.5
Following the logic of our first prediction we also expect Nadal to breeze through at least 1 set. This should be enough to keep the game tally below 31.5 games.
Playing against Nadal is never easy as he keeps testing one’s fitness with his sublime defensive skills and spinning shots. On top of all that McDonald will enter the match tired after coming through a 5-set thriller in round 1. He spent huge amount of energy defeating Nakashima 7:6 7:6 1:6 6:7 6:4. With that in mind we expect McDonald’s resistance to collapse against Nadal if he is to lose the first set.
Rafael Nadal vs Mackenzie McDonald Preview
After making our Nadal vs McDonald predictions it’s time to take a closer look at the two players individually as they enter Australian Open 2023:
Even after his win in round 1, Rafael Nadal has lost 6 of his last 8 matches on the tour. His form declined sharply once he had to pull out of Wimbledon’s semi-final injured last year.
The 36-year-old Spaniard remains Australian Open’s defending champion and also holds the record 22 Grand Slam titles, so expecting him to lose matches of that caliber is somewhat optimistic
McDonald has been on the tour for 6 full years now, but he never developed into a top player. His record against top 10 players is discouraging too: 1 win and 13 defeats. He has strong serve and can hit some powerful winners, but this is rarely enough against the best in the business.
McDonald had decent 2022 and in August he reached his highest ever singles ranking of 48, but he has fallen back to 65 since.
Rafael Nadal vs Mackenzie McDonald Head to Head
Nadal won comfortably the only previous matchup between the players. It was in 2020 in the French Open and the king of clay triumphed in straight sets.
Rafael Nadal vs Mackenzie McDonald Match Details
- When will the match start? The match is scheduled to start at 03:30 am GMT on Wednesday, January 18th.
- On which court will the match be played? The match will be played on Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne.
- Where to watch AO 2023 in UK? You can watch Australian Open on Eurosport broadcast and online, or stream it on Discovery+.
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