The question is what next? No one knows for Rafael Nadal but we do know where he will be playing as the former world number one returns to Buenos Aires to defend his title and faces Juan Monaco in round one who the Spaniard defeated in last year’s final 6-4 6-1.
I believe in the saying you can only defeat what’s in front of you but in all fairness to Nadal he wasn’t tested. I said after he won the title last year he won but I wasn’t convinced throughout the week.
Will he find his best tennis once again? It’s incredible I’m sat here writing about a player who has won 14 Grand Slam titles but for almost two years now since winning Roland Garros in 2014 we have seen a level of tennis nowhere near his best and after a first round exit at the Australian Open his earliest ever exit in Melbourne more questions are being asked. I expected Verdasco to cause him trouble and I was very impressed by Fernando in Miami last year as he defeated Rafa but over 5 sets I would have still had Rafa as favourite!
Juan Monaco is a very good and experienced player. Experienced players seemed to be getting a lot of luck against Nadal and Juan has defeated Rafa once before but it was a long time ago in Cincinnati back in 2007 with Juan winning 7-6 4-1 with Nadal retiring but since they have met four times and Nadal has won all four winning the sets 6-1 6-1 6-2 6-2 6-0 6-0 6-1 6-0 6-4 6-1.
I can’t see past Nadal winning this one! It’s on clay he has an excellent record against Juan as well short rallies have to be key for the Spaniard you don’t want to be getting involved in too long a rally like he did against Verdasco in Melbourne and end up losing a majority of them.
On clay he is probably the best mover now he has to show his best tennis once again.