- 23 Aug 2019
Rafael Nadal does not believe he has an advantage heading into the US Open after he was drawn away from Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic.
World number two Nadal was placed in the bottom half of the draw, and cannot meet Federer or Djokovic until the final should he get that far.
However, the Spaniard shrugged off any suggestion he holds an edge going into the final grand slam of 2019.
“I don’t know. I have to win my matches to have an advantage because I only can meet them after the semi-finals,” Nadal said.
“I have plenty of work before that to know if I have an advantage or not. So let’s see if I am able to do my work.
“That’s not an advantage or disadvantage. That’s part of the draw. That’s part of the things that happen when you are No.1, No.2 and No.3.
“For example, at Wimbledon it was the other way. They changed. Now here is the opposite. Let’s see what’s going on.”
— US Open Tennis (@usopen) August 23, 2019
Second seed Nadal opens his campaign against John Millman, who knocked Federer out in the fourth round at Flushing Meadows in 2018.
Thanasi Kokkinakis, who also upset Federer last season, and Fernando Verdasco are potential second and third-round opponents.
Dominic Thiem – seeded fourth – could meet Nadal in the semi-final, in what would be a repeat of the French Open final, as well as an epic quarter-final from last season’s US Open.
“He is the No.4 now. Every year he’s improving,” Nadal said of the 25-year-old Austrian.
“Already this year he won a Masters 1000 on hard. He played again the final in Roland Garros. Every day he is a very solid, and every year is more solid.
“He has everything to win important events. He already is winning important events. He’s a very, very hard worker. Just a question of time that he achieve all his goals.”