Rafael Nadal and Jannik Sinner will face each other for the second time in Rome on Wednesday, battling in one of the second-round matches to watch. The young Italian has made stellar progress in the past three seasons, passing over 500 rivals on the ATP ranking list to crack the top-20.
With two ATP titles by his name, Jannik has been one of the youngsters to watch, improving his game constantly and setting eyes on big goals in the upcoming years. On the other hand, Nadal will try to avoid an early exit after two poor results at the Masters 1000 series in Monte Carlo and Madrid, hoping to gain some momentum ahead of the season's second Major event in Paris.
Speaking about Rafa before the match, Jannik stated that he knows the 20-time Major winner well, practicing with him in Adelaide in January and learning a lot from one of the greatest players of all time. At Roland Garros last year, Sinner stayed in touch with Rafa in the opening two sets, showing his rich talent before losing 7-6, 6-4, 6-1.
The youngster will try to beat Rafa for the first time in Rome, preparing an aggressive approach and the right mentality.
Rafael Nadal and Jannik Sinner will battle in Rome on Wednesday.
"I know Rafa, but now he knows me well too.
It will be an important moment for me; let's see how it goes. I will enter the court with the right mentality, and I will try to hurt him with my game. My team and I will try to understand what I can do better than last time.
This is a sport of situations, and for each one, you have to find the right solution. After Madrid, we resumed working according to our usual plan; no upheaval. Maybe we focused a little more on the service. Against Nadal, it will be important to have the right mentality.
I know I have more weapons than I did at Roland Garros, but at the same time, a grand champion like Rafa will know what to do to make me uncomfortable. Playing against him on this surface is difficult, but every match has its own story.
We know each other quite well, as we have also had the opportunity to train together several times. I will try to play my game and hope for the best," Jannik Sinner said.