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Rafael Nadal Upsets Novak Djokovic in 4-Set Thriller at 2022 French Open, Listed as New Betting Favorite to Win Tournament

Rafael Nadal Upsets Novak Djokovic in 4-Set Thriller at 2022 French Open, Listed as New Betting Favorite to Win Tournament article feature image
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Photo by CHRISTOPHE ARCHAMBAULT/AFP via Getty Images. Pictured: Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal proved once again why he’s known as the ‘King of Clay’ by upsetting top-seeded Novak Djokovic in a four-set thriller in the French Open Quarterfinals on Tuesday.

Nadal, listed as around a +175 underdog heading into the match, took down Djokovic (-220) 6-2, 4-6, 6-2, 7-6 (7-4) to advance to the semifinals against against No. 3 Alexander Zverev.

Zverev advanced with a four-set win over Carlos Alcaraz earlier on Tuesday.

It was the latest win for Nadal in a career full of them, specifically on the clay surface — and specifically against Djokovic.

As explained by Action Network’s Avery Zimmerman, Nadal entered the match with a 19-8 record against Djokovic on clay courts in his career. Make that 20-8 now.

What made this match different was Djokovic being the betting favorite. That had happened just three times in the past against Nadal on clay, but Djokovic won all three of those matchups.

Not only was the loss Djokovic’s first as a favorite to Nadal on clay, but he had previously never even lost a set under the circumstances.

Next up is Zverev, who is 10 years younger than Nadal. Nadal has won six of the nine times these two opponents have met. Nadal won all five meetings between 2016-2018 before dropping the next three. Nadal won the last matchup on clay in Rome (ATP Masters 1000 event) in 2021.

The two have faced each other five times on clay, with Nadal winning four of them.

Nadal is an underdog no more, though. He’s now -200 at DraftKings to win the tournament. A tournament win would give him 14 French Open titles.

Zverev is +400 to win it all. That match will take place on June 3.

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