TennisSection previews the 2021 Barcelona Open as Rafael Nadal (1) meets Pablo Carreno Busta (6) in the Semi-finals on Saturday, April 24th 2021.
Will Pablo Carreno Busta have anything left in the tank after that very tight and extremely draining match against Diego Schwartzman in the Quarter-finals? Will Rafael Nadal continue to raise his level match after match as he has done all week here at the 2021 Barcelona Open as he looks to make the Final and win his 12th Barcelona Open title? Both players have played great tennis all week, but only one will make it to the Final. Who will it be?
Pablo Carreno Busta came through one of the best matches of 2021 on Friday, beating the clay-court specialist Diego Schwartzman in 3 tight sets 6-4/3-6/7-5. Although the scoreline looks quite simple, Pablo Carreno Busta was down 5-2 in the final set and was able to fight his way back in formidable fashion, continuously raising his level and putting Diego Schwartzman under pressure. There were so many breaks throughout the match as both players were amazing on their return game, but struggled on their service. In the end, Pablo just seemed to have an extra level in the match that Diego was not able to match. However, now Pablo Carreno Busta will have to ensure he is physically ready for another tough match against Rafael Nadal.
Rafael Nadal cruised through his Quarter-final match here at the 2021 Barcelona Open, beating Cameron Norrie in straight sets 6-1/6-4. This was the first match this week where Nadal started off strongly straight away and he was also able to maintain this throughout the entire match. Rafael Nadal has stated that he needs a few more matches under his belt to ensure he is at his best on clay, but I am sure that he will get there very soon with more performances like this under his belt. Rafael Nadal loves playing here in Barcelona, especially as the main court is named after him, and he will be very determined to make his way to the Final by beating Pablo Carreno Busta to give himself a chance at a 12th title here.
Rafael Nadal and Pablo Carreno Busta have met 7 times before, and Rafael Nadal has only ever lost 2 sets in his perfect 7-0 record against his fellow Spaniard. The last time they met was towards the end of 2020 at the Paris Masters in what was an extremely tight match where Nadal looked very close to losing. However, we should not look too much into that match as Rafael Nadal does not like indoor hard courts too much, and he was not feeling his best physically as well that week. Now that we are on the clay courts of the 2021 Barcelona Open, I see no other result than a straight sets victory for the King of Clay who will hurt his opponent both physically and mentally.
Free Tennis Pick and Prediction: Rafael Nadal in Straight Sets.