The 2022 Australian Open is slowly coming to a close, with only eight tennis players remaining in the race for the coveted Norman Brookes Challenge Cup.
And as the field gradually this down to only two finalists, all eyes are set on the upcoming two matches between Rafael Nadal and Denis Shapovalov, and Gael Monfils and Matteo Berrettini, set to lock horns on Tuesday, January 25.
Let’s take a closer look to who can be your tennis betting pick for these quater-finals.
2022 Australian Open Quater-Finals Analysis
Nadal Looking For A Comfortable Win
After a year filled with injuries and subpar results, Rafael Nadal looks to have found his top form at the Australian Open, having made it to the quarter-finals for the sixth consecutive year. The King of Clay has proven his worth against some formidable opponents, taking down the likes of Marcos Giron, Yannick Hanfmann, Karen Khachanov, and Adrian Mannarino, who he beat on Sunday, January 23.
But while Nadal is looking better than he has in months, it’s fair to say that he has yet to be properly tested. But that’s about to change on Tuesday, January 25, when Nadal clashes with Denis Shapovalov.
The 22-year-old Israeli tennis star has made quite a splash with his showings in Melbourne. He won against Laslo Dere, Kwon Soon-woo, and Reilly Opelka. He even eliminated the third tournament favorite, Alexander Zverev, with 6-3, 6-7, 6-3 on Sunday.
Shapovalov has already secured his career-best placement at the Australian Open. And he is now only one step away from repeating his success from the 2021 Wimbledon and reaching the semi-finals.
But despite Shapovalov’s remarkable performance so far, there are reasons to doubt his chances to defeat Nadal. Even though Shapovalov has had success against Nadal in the past – he won their first meeting in 2017 and claimed another head-to-head win in December 2021 – most of his victories against Nadal came when Nadal was struggling with injuries.
If we look at pure numbers from the last year, Nadal holds quite a sizeable advantage over Shapovalov on hard courts – with better service points and stronger stats on the return. Beyond that, Nadal has been playing extremely well this tournament and looks more than ready to make a jump into the semi-finals.
It surely will be an interesting match to follow, but everything points toward a fairly straightforward win for Nadal. However, will he manage to deliver to the expectations remains to be seen.
Berrettini Favoured Over Monfils
In the second Australian Open semi-final match of the day, we will see Matteo Berrettini clash with Gael Monfils for the first time since the ATP Cup in February 2021, when Berrettini won in straight sets (6-4, 6-2). It marked his second-head-to-head victory, having already beaten Monfils 3-2 in the 2019 US Open quarter-finals.
Berrettini is expected to do just as well for his third head-to-head meeting with Monfils as he enters the match as a heavy favorite. And it’s easy to see why.
Berrettini has looked great so far at the 2022 Australian Open, picking up wins against Brandon Nakashima, Stefan Kozlov, Carlos Alcaraz Garifa, and Pablo Carreno Busta, who he beat in straight sets on Sunday. But while the Italian has looked good, so has Monfils, who has yet to disappoint this tournament.
Monfils enters his career-second Australian Open quarter-finals (and the first since 2016) with four straight-set victories against Federico Coria, Alexander Bublik, Cristian Garin, and Miomir Kecmanovic. What’s more, the Frenchman has won the warm-up tournament earlier this month.
It’s fair to say that Monfils is enjoying an excellent start to the 2022 season, and so far, he has looked unstoppable. Admittedly, he has yet to win against Berrettini, but this could be his best chance to do so based on his form.
The public will favor Berrettini, which is more than fair, but at the same time, you can’t look past Monfils. Not only has the French tennis player produced much cleaner performances than the Italian, but he is also better rested than Berrettini, who had to play 16 sets across four matches.
Will the fatigue prevent Berretini from delivering to the expectations, or will he solidify himself as the better player of the two? We’ll get an answer to that on Tuesday, January 25, at 20:30 local time (AEDT).
More Exciting Games Ahead
The two fixtures featuring Nadal, Shapovalov, Berrettini, and Monfils are the first fixtures of the 2022 Australian Open quarter-finals. And tennis fans will be happy to hear that more highly entertaining games are on the schedule for Wednesday, January 26.
First will be a clash between world no.10 Jannik Sinner and world no.4 Stefano Tsistipas, who will lock horns on Thursday at 11:00 a.m. AEDT for the fourth time of their careers and the first time since April 2021.
Next up will be a match between world no.9 Felix Auger-Aliassime and the tournament favorite, world no.2, Daniil Medvedev. The two will cross swords for the second time this month after Medvedev already defeated Auger-Aliassime in the ATP Cup at the start of the month.
The public expects Medvedev to deliver and take one step closer to his first Australian Open title, but given Auger-Aliassime’s form in this tournament, Medvedev is far from guaranteed to walk away from the match unharmed.
So while there is less than a week left before the Australian Open comes to a close and we get to crown the new champion, there is plenty of action to look forward to and plenty of games that will keep us entertained until the grand finals on Sunday, January 30.