Published: Sun, September 10, 2017
Sport | By Wilson Duncan

US Open 2017 Men's Final Predictions: Rafael Nadal vs. Kevin Anderson

US Open 2017 Men's Final Predictions: Rafael Nadal vs. Kevin Anderson

The two-time US Open champion dropped serve seven times in 21 sets contested so far in NY.

U.S. Open finalists Rafael Nadal and Kevin Anderson are both professional tennis players who were born in 1986. Although even that seems unlikely, given that the 6-foot-1 Nadal is among the game's top returners and has won 43 percent of his opponents' service games in the tournament.

In what has been a resurgent 2017 campaign, the Spaniard made a statement in his bid to finish the year atop the Emirates ATP Rankings.

Del Potro, who was battling illness heading into the clash having struggled at times against Federer and Dominic Thiem, looked on course for a showdown with Kevin Anderson in the decider, however Nadal showed why he has won 15 Majors as he wore down the big-hitting No.24 seed in a sensational onslaught for his 23rd appearance in a slam final.

Winning the 16th major would also put Nadal two clear of Pete Sampras at second place, and bring the gap from Federer at the top down to three Grand Slam titles, which is the same as it was when the year began. While the match produced gorgeously competitive points nearly to the end, there was no question who was dictating overall pace and play, as the Spaniard went 6-0, 6-3, 6-4 after dropping the first set 4-6. But Nadal has been in similar situations many times before, and would know exactly how to approach the final. "I need to play at full energy and full motivation if I'm going to have my chances".

Unseeded Sloane Stephens completed a spectacular return from injury by beating fellow American Madison Keys to win the US Open at Flushing Meadows. Nadal last made it to three major finals in one year in 2011. "I played well", said Nadal.

"Important day for me". "I will need to impose my tempo". That's the real thing. He had beaten three top-40 players - Paolo Lorenzi, Sam Querrey and Pablo Carreno Busta - and he felt amazed at reaching the peak of a USA -based journey.

"He was playing me all the time to my backhand", he said. "Still obviously a very hard match ahead of me, but I think right now I'm just trying to unwind a little bit and just enjoy sort of today's match".

"And I knew that". I felt that I was playing at the right level to win the match.

'It's been an wonderful season, of course, after a couple of years with some troubles, injuries and tough moments so this year since the beginning has been a very emotional year - I'm very happy. Kriek represented the United States when he won the 1982 Australian Open. He would punctuate the first set with a forehand fired down the line, his 12th victor. You couldn't blame his enthusiasm - he played with great passion - but he'll have to wait until Sunday to gain that achievement.

Del Potro fended off two set points in the eighth game but it only delayed the inevitable as Nadal took a two-sets-to-one lead. He certainly didn't look so god-like against Juan Martin del Potro in their quarter-final.

Playing much faster and with more intensity, Nadal gave a big fist pump as he snatched a break for 2-0 and another two games later. "Rafael needs to have more power with all his shots".

"Nadal really controls the court well", Anderson said. Another forehand victor earned him the quick break in the second game and the rout was on. It was all over in the eighth game when Nadal buried unleashed a backhand victor. He was dominant. He played well. Nadal was simply sensational in the second, third, and fourth sets.

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