Rafael Nadal kicks his Australian Open off in the final match of the day session on Tuesday, taking on Germany’s Florian Mayer. He will be hoping for a slightly better outcome than last year’s tournament where he lost in the first round for just the second time in his career at slam level. Check out the Head to Head between the two players.
Nadal’s exploits at Wimbledon the last few years has shown that he is vulnerable on a fast court against a big hitter but it doesn’t feel like Florian Mayer is the type of play to exploit that at least. “I like the conditions. I don’t see the courts faster or slower. It is true that the outside courts are a little bit faster than the inside courts, the show courts.” Nadal said with reference to the court speed. The standard medium-slow pace court is one that suits Nadal, especially since he won’t find himself off a show court in his career from now on.
Despite losing to Milos Raonic in Brisbane, Nadal is far from down on his chances.”I am playing well. When I’m saying I’m playing well is because to play well today on this sport you need to be a complete player, no? You need to be ready to hit your backhand, forehand, serve and return well.” said Nadal. He will have a chance to avenge Raonic if both players make the quarter finals although that outcome seems far more certain for Raonic than Nadal at first glance with a number of potential threats prior to the quarter finals.
It will be the third meeting between Mayer and Nadal with the pair currently split at 1-1. Nadal won their last match 5 years ago but Mayer has the sole hard court victory in 2011 at Shanghai. Mayer hasn’t had the best start to the year with losses to players more known for their clay exploits in Horacio Zeballos and Paolo Lorenzi in Doha and Sydney respectively.
Rafael Nadal in straight sets