Rafael Nadal, the World No. 2 and the 2nd seed at the ongoing Rome Masters 2021 is chasing his 10th Rome Masters title with his 9th title coming in the 2019 Italian Open.
Nadal will be playing his 5th tournament of the year after deciding to opt out of certain tournaments due to the fatigue of the bio-bubble life the players are experiencing due to the Pandemic. Of those 3 tournaments, Nadal reached till the quarter-finals. He won the title at the Barcelona Open 2021 which was his 12th title in Barcelona.
Being the 2nd seed, Nadal was handed a bye in the first round and will begin his 2021 Rome campaign in the second round against Italian teen sensation, Jannik Sinner who is currently ranked 18th in the ATP Rankings.
Sinner has been phenomenal this season with one title which he won at the Great Ocean Road Open 2021 and also finished runner-up at the Miami Masters 2021. With a comfortable first round victory in Rome, he is now set to face the ‘King of Clay’ in a thrilling encounter in the 2nd round.
Talking about the match-up, Nadal praised the young Italian saying, “It’s one of the toughest starts you can get.” Nadal who was knocked out in the quarters of the Madrid Open 2021 was hopeful to go further at Rome but now faces the challenge of Sinner who has the talent and the skillset to cause another upset to the Spaniard.
“I hope to be ready.” says Rafael Nadal ahead of his clash with Jannik Sinner
Rafael Nadal and Jannik Sinner have developed a great bond in a very short time. Rafa had invited the teen sensation to his academy to train with him ahead of the start of the 2021 Australian Open and was impressed by Sinner.
He had appreciated Sinner’s hard working and had mentioned how he enjoyed training with him. Sinner had shown a similar respect and admiration for the 20-time Grand Slam winner and explained how much you can learn from a legendary player like him.
The duo have met just once on the tour, with the meeting taking place in the 2020 French Open where Rafael Nadal won in straight sets against Sinner. Talking about meeting the Italian again, Nadal said, “He is confident, he will be excited to face me. But I am excited too. I hope to be ready.”
With the stage ready for a thrilling showdown, tennis fans all over the world will surely be tuning to witness the match between the master and his apprentice.