Andy Murray vs. Rafael Nadal
|Date & Time||Saturday April 16, 2016, 3:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Rafael Nadal -245 / Andy Murray +205 -- Over/Under:
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Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray meet Saturday morning in the semifinals of the Monte Carlo Masters.
Rafael Nadal is coming off a straight sets win over Stan Wawrinka, as he looks to regain his form before the French Open. Nadal has now won seven of his last nine singles matches, which is a drastic improvement from the inconsistencies we saw last year and the beginning of this season starting with the Australian Open. We know what Nadal is capable of and how he can play when healthy, but many were questioning if he was on the downside of his career once the losses started to pile up. If Nadal can continue to play the way he played in the quarterfinals against Stan, a lot of those critics will have no choice but to fade off into the sunset a little longer.
Andy Murray is coming off a straight sets win over Milos Raonic and hopes he can build on that to find his form as well. Murray has been hit or miss lately, as he’s had quick exits at the Indian Wells Masters and Miami Masters. Still, Murray has won 10 of his last 13 singles matches and could pick up already his third win this season over a top-10 player. Murray looks sharp, is moving well and has done a nice job of limiting his unforced errors as of late. However, Murray can only hope struggles with his service game don’t return, which were the reason for hiccups the past few weeks. Still, Murray is one of those players who usually shows up in the big moments, which this is.
These two have played 22 times, and Nadal has won 16 of those meetings. The last match was in last year’s ATP World Tour Finals, a match Nadal won in straight sets. However, the last six matches between these two have been split down the middle.
I’m not ready to say Nadal is back, but he’s clearly in far better form than he was about six months ago. And when both players are in decent form, Nadal is easily the better player. So, I have to go with Nadal to win this match.