The Wolf said they were on a collision course from the start of the week and we get the final that we all craved – Nadal versus Federer!
Shanghai Master Final Tips
|Nadal v Federer||Best: Federer +1.5 ($1.85)
Value: Federer WIN ($2.20)
1st Set Scorecast: Federer 6-3 ($8.50)
Rafael Nadal v Roger Federer
There is winding the clock back and then there is what Nadal and Federer have done in 2017. The two veterans of the tour were expected to have a rough year after both had taken a considerable amount of time due to injuries over the last 24 months. Their clash in the final of the Australian Open was supposed to bring back memories of long ago but they didn’t stop there. They have split the majors this year with two wins a piece and have in fact combined for a remarkable 11 titles and 17 finals appearances – many of which have come against one another. This will be their 4th meeting of the year and it is Federer who has remarkably won all of them! The Wolf says remarkably as Nadal has always been his kryptonite in the past. The 19 Grand Slam champion has turned the tables on Rafa as of late winning their last 4 meetings dating back to 2015 and doing so on the back of an adjusted game plan. Federer now plays further up on the baseline, hits through his backhand (rarely slicing) and looks to stretch Rafa by attacking his strength – the forehand.
The fast surface in Shanghai will allow him to employ an identical game plan and Rafa will have to be at his best. At his best is an understatement in terms of describing the for of the Raging Bull. He has reeled off 16 straight wins dating back to the US Open and when Rafa is winning on hard courts you know his game is right where it needs to be. Federer has improved with every match this week and despite dropping the first set to Del Potro he never looked threatened when they were back on level terms. This may be hard to believe but Federer is 43-4 on the season and this is just his 10th tournament of the year.
Only one man has even looked like beating Rafa in recent weeks and his name is Grigor Dimitrov – a poor man’s Roger Federer according to The Wolf. He was referrer to as ‘Baby Fed’ when he was coming through the ranks and has failed to live up to the hype but the fact remains that he has given Rafa some serious problems this season. Lost to Rafa in a 5 hour, 5 set marathon in Melbourne and forced him to a deciding set at both Beijing and here over the last two weeks. The surface here will favour Roger and with consecutive wins over the Spaniard the pressure is now on Rafa – something we have rarely seen in this matchup. Federer has won close to 80% of 1st serve points against Nadal this year, a number we rarely see anyone achieve against him and with his one-two punch doing wonders this week The Wolf is tipping Federer to make it 5 wins on a row against his biggest ever rival and prevent Nadal from winning his first Shanghai title. This one will live up to all the hype!
Best Bet: Federer +1.5 ($1.85)