Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal meet Wednesday in the quarterfinal of the 2015 French Open.
Novak Djokovic has yet to drop a set in this tournament and is coming off a win over Richard Gasquet. Djokovic has played no more than 30 games and hasn’t played a tiebreak. Djokovic has won at least 69 percent of his first serve points and has hit 81 winners in his last two matches. Djokovic has gotten 76 percent of his first serves in play in his last two matches and has 17 aces overall. Djokovic has 25 or less unforced errors in his last three matches and has just two double faults all tournament. Djokovic has not shown a single weakness all tournament and heads into this match super fresh considering he has yet to be tested through his first four matches. Djokovic has reached at least the semifinal of the French Open the last four years.
Rafael Nadal has dropped just one set this tournament, which came in his victory over Jack Sock. Nadal has played 28 or less games in three of his four matches and has zero tiebreaks. Nadal has won 69 percent or better of his first serve points in three of his four matches and has hit 60 winners in his last two matches. Nadal has gotten at least 59 percent of his first serves in play and has seven aces in his last three matches. Nadal has also won at least 58 percent of his second serve points in three of his four matches. However, Nadal must play a cleaner game if he hopes to advance, as he’s coming off a match in which he had 32 unforced errors. Nadal has won the last five French Opens and nine of the last 10.
These two have played each other 43 times, and Nadal has won 23 of those meetings. Djokovic has won five of the last six meetings, but Nadal has won the last four matches when playing in a major. Nadal is 14-5 against Djokovic when playing him on clay.
While Djokovic is playing the better tennis, as we really going to bet against Nadal on clay in the French Open? This has been Nadal’s major for the last decade, and he’s owned Djokovic on clay throughout his career. I just can’t pick against Nadal in this spot, as he’s been money time and time again.