A Novak Djokovic vs Rafael Nadal Rome final was expected, but instead Nadal fell in the quarterfinals to Diego Schwartzman, tilting the deck clearly in favor of Djokovic, who faces Casper Ruud in the semis, while Schwartzman takes on Denis Shapovalov. Here are your predictions for the Rome Masters semifinals.
Novak Djokovic vs Casper Ruud
It’s a big moment for Ruud who has been fantastic on clay during this severely abbreviated season, he won his first ATP title this season, and now he’s reached his first Masters level semifinal. He’ll zoom to a career high ranking after this tournament concludes, and has entrenched himself as solid ATP level player at just 21 years of age. Ruud has beaten two Italians including Matteo Berrettini, along with Marin Cilic and Karen Khachanov to reach this stage, but Djokovic is an entirely different standard. Novak hasn’t lost an official tour match since last year’s ATP finals in London, he’s won 29 matches this year at the tour level, and despite the shock loss via disqualification at the US Open, he’s far and above the strongest player on tour right now. Despite being tested by qualifier Dominik Koepfer in the quarters, He’ll be too good for Ruud and should enter the French Open as the favorite, along with the Rome final. Djokovic in 2
Denis Shapovalov vs Diego Schwartzman
Backing up a win against one of the sport’s elite is always a challenging task, and Diego Schwartzman is the latest to take it on after he stunned Rafael Nadal 6-2 7-5 for one of the biggest wins of his career. Schwartzman had a solid pre-Covid clay court stint, but he didn’t entirely find his footing until this tournament since the tour returned. Shapovalov beat Grigor Dimitrov in the Rome quarterfinals and has backed up his US Open quarterfinal with a great run in Rome. This match could go either way, but given the surface I’ll give Schwartzman the edge to back up his win against Rafa and reach the final. Schwartzman in 3