Does Ramos-Vinolas Have A Chance Vs Nadal in the Monte Carlo Final?

Ramos Vinolas

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Albert Ramos-Vinolas (15) will be the underdog in his Monte Carlo ATP 1000 final versus Rafa Nadal (4), but the final is unlikely to be a walk in the park for the defending champion. The Tennis Review gives you five reasons Ramos-Vinolas has got plenty of bite to hurt the nine time Champion one match away from La Decima part 1.

Ramos-Vinolas has a match winning shot in his forehand

Ramos-Vinolas is a lefty like Nadal and when the two go forehand to forehand, their strongest wings will be going up against each other.

Ramos Vinolas is not afraid to takes risks on his forehand side in big moments and if Nadal hits his forehand short, the fifteenth seed is no stranger to stepping inside the court and punishing that weakness.

Ramos-Vinolas is on a career great run

Ramos-Vinolas has beaten top seed Andy Murray, coming back from two breaks down in the third, fifth seed Marin Cilic, coming from a break down in the decider, and came back from losing the second set to a pumped eleventh seed Lucas Pouille to command the final set.

Ramos-Vinolas is unlikely to defeat Nadal in straight sets in Monte Carlo, and if he is going to win, he is going to have to do it the hard way, and his run to the Monte Carlo final shows he can take Nadal to three sets and give himself a chance. Fighting back versus experienced, higher seeded opponents and riding through talented rival’s purple patches to then grab the momentum in a brief lull are signs of a player full of self-belief ready and unafraid to take their game to the next level.

Ramos-Vinolas may have a negative win-loss ratio, but he has some pretty big wins.

In 2015, Roger Federer was the heavy favorite to defend his title and win Shanghai, but Ramos-Vinolas defeated him in three sets.

The Spaniard has also had wins over Milos Raonic at Roland Garros ’16, and Dominic Thiem and Grigor Dimitrov at Chengdu ’16 so he knows how to exploit the weaknesses of top players, and aged 29 and ranked at a career high of 24, he is enjoying his best years in the later stage of his decade long professional career, his hard work, experience and talent coming together and earning him great results.

Nadal has lost all his three finals this year

On the positive side for Nadal, the two players who beat him, Roger Federer (Australian Open, Miami) and Sam Querrey (Acapulco) play first rate first strike hard court tennis. This final will also be played on Clay, Nadal’s best surface, and at a venue where he is extremely comfortable, though the incident with David Goffin in his semi-final may have made it slightly less so right now.

On the negative side for Nadal, losing in finals can eat into a player’s self-belief and while Nadal may be one of the mentally toughest players around, he has shown more vulnerability in that department in recent years, and if things get tight, Ramos-Vinolas has the match toughness to be able to feed off Nadal’s doubts.

Ramos-Vinolas is inspired

Ramos-Vinolas is, in his words, living his dream, and defeating Nadal in the Monte Carlo final would be as dreamy as it gets. If the fifteenth seed can get inspired in the final then, tennis being sport, anything can happen.

Prediction: Nadal is the overwhelming favorite, and rightly so, but he is going to have to play at a very high level because if he falls short, Ramos Vinolas has enough bite on that forehand side, the right positive aggressive approach, and enough hunger to win to go from underdog to top dog and cause one of the upsets of the year.

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Christian Deverille

Christian Deverille is a tennis writer with a diploma in Freelance Sports Writing from the London School of Journalism. He loves all things tennis, most of all the Federer and del Potro forehands.

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