US Open Day 2 Predictions Including Rafael Nadal vs Rinky Hijikata

Rafael Nadal ATP Cincy 2022

Rafael Nadal will see what kind of resistance Rinky Hijikata can put up in round 1 of the US Open. Our panelists offer predictions for every day 2 match including Hubert Hurkacz and Marin Cilic’s matches.

Rafael Nadal vs Rinky Hijikata

Damian Kust: It’s a good learning opportunity for Rinky Hijikata, who’s here because of the reciprocal Australian wildcard. Even if Rafael Nadal hasn’t had a good warm-up for this event, this is a good matchup for him to play himself into form. Nadal in 3

David Gertler: Nadal lost to Coric early in Cincinnati, but is still one of the favorites for the title. Hijikata is clean ball striker, but Nadal’s weight of shot should be way too much for Hijikata to handle Nadal should win this with ease. Nadal in 3

Glenys Furness: Although Nadal has not played much since Wimbledon, in fact the Spaniard lost in the first round in Cincinnati. Hijikata is playing his first US Open and his first Grand Slam main draw singles. The Australian has played challenger and ITF events in the lead up, making the final of an ITF earlier in August. Even with that, Nadal has the experience that Hijikata is lacking. Nadal in 3

Alexei Popyrin vs Chun-Hsin Tseng

Damian: Chun-Hsin Tseng isn’t really setting the world on fire in his early days on the ATP Tour, but this looks like a winnable matchup. He covers the court extremely well and Alexei Popyrin has been mostly losing recently. Tseng should have a decent chance. Tseng in 5

David: Popyrin has a big serve and forehand, but he can sometimes become erratic from the baseline. This is not a good trait to have against Tseng, who can get a lot of balls into play deep and will force Popyrin to decrease the margins on his groundstrokes. Popyrin in 4

Glenys: The Australian has only made a second round main draw once in the build up to Flushing Meadows. The last couple of events Popyrin has not survived qualifying but is in the main draw here. Tseng on the other hand has played regularly in the lead up. Tseng made the second round last week in Winston Salem so has the hard court main draw advantage. Tseng in 4

Joao Sousa vs Mackenzie McDonald

Damian: They’ve already played three times this year, but only on grass and clay. On a fairly fast hard court, you probably gotta favor Mackenzie McDonald, especially with how Joao Sousa’s form fell off a cliff after Roland Garros. McDonald in 4

David: Sousa is a grinder who will get a lot of balls back into play and uses his forehand to dictrate from the baseline. McDonald has a bigger serve and a powerful forehand that should target Sousa’s weaker backhand just enough to sneak through. McDonald in 5

Glenys: Joao Sousa (Portugal) was seeded in Winston Salem but lost in the first round in a tough three setter, didn’t play Cincinnati and lost in the first round in the Canadian Open. McDonald reached round two of Winston Salem and lost to Alcaraz, but also lost in the first round in the Candian Open. Both will want to show they can progress. McDonald in 5

Tallon Griekspoor vs Federico Coria

Damian: Tallon Griekspoor’s in mediocre form, but most players in the draw would like their chances against Federico Coria on a hard court. The Argentinian has a 9-23 career win/loss record on this surface and it’s not a matter of sample size. Griekspoor in 4

David: Griekspoor has a huge serve and forehand that he uses to dictate from the baseline. Coria is a clay courter with a heavy forehand, but he doesn’t have the power to compete on hard courts against a player like Griekspoor. Griekspoor in 5

Glenys: The Dutchman lost in the final qualifying round in Winston Salem, but got in the main draw as a lucky loser. Griekspoor lost in the second round to the second seed. The Argentine made the first round in Winston Salem, the second round in Austria where he lost to the seventh seed. This should be a very good but tight match. Coria in 5

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