'Rafael Nadal will need a huge effort to...', says top analyst

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'Rafael Nadal will need a huge effort to...', says top analyst

Rafael Nadal has a strange fact in the ATP Masters 1000. Borna Coric has made a dream come true that narrowly escaped him four years ago. The Croatian tennis player achieved his first 1000 title in Cincinnati, beating the Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas in straight sets.

The victory came at the second attempt of his career: his first dates back to 2018, when he was defeated at the hands of Novak Djokovic in the final of the Shanghai 1000 tournament. To reach the conquest of the last act in the American city, however, the new number 29 in the world had to overcome a long and exhausting journey.

As he himself stated during the award ceremony, Coric thought that he would not make it past the first round. However, it was his victory against Lorenzo Musetti that kicked off his winning streak in the tournament. The second obstacle seemed to be the most difficult, since the number three in the world, Rafael Nadal, awaited him.

For the Croatian tennis player, the unexpected victory against the Grand Slam champion was the prelude to the final victory in the tournament. However, this series of events does not concern only Coric, but has involved more tennis players this season.

It seems that beating Rafael Nadal in a 1000 tournament brings good luck, since whoever beats the Spaniard wins the 1000 tournament in which they met: this is the case of Taylor Fritz in Indian Wells, Carlos Alcaraz in Madrid and Borna Coric in Cincinnati.

In reference to the first case, the luck was obvious since the confrontation between the American and the Grand Slam champion took place in the last act of the first tournament of the 1000 stars.

Rafa Nadal wants the fifth title in NY

Tim Henman has picked his favourites for the US Open men’s title – and he believes Rafael Nadal could be in the mix to win his third major of 2022.

“There is a whole host of people knocking on the door. Nadal could win his third Slam of the year. You can never write off Rafa. Maybe we did that last year when he was struggling with injury, but look at what he did at the Australian Open in his comeback event and then he won the French Open again.

It will take a massive effort, but for sure, Nadal has a chance to compete for another title, especially with Djokovic not playing. I’d also look out for (Carlos) Alcaraz and (Jannik) Sinner have been playing great tennis.

Also, Capser Ruud continues to impress me on all surfaces. Lots to choose on the men’s side. He’s playing great,” said Henman of Kyrgios. “With the success he had at Wimbledon, it’s given him a taste of the big time and it seems he really liked it.