Australian Open Tennis 2012 Men's Final: TV Schedule, Start Time and Live Stream

Adam WellsFeatured ColumnistJanuary 27, 2012

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 26:  Rafael Nadal of Spain celebrates winning his semifinal match against Roger Federer of Switzerland during day eleven of the 2012 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 26, 2012 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)
Scott Barbour/Getty Images

It took more than four hours to make it official, but Novak Djokovic secured his place in the Australian Open finals on Sunday against Rafael Nadal

Djokovic is going to need every second of his time off just to recover from his marathon match against Andy Murray in the semifinals. His adrenaline seemed to be the only thing carrying him, because his body looked like jello by the time the match was over. 

Nadal is coming off an epic battle of his own against Roger Federer, but he has an extra 24 hours to get his wind back before this match. 

 

Where: Rod Laver Arena at Melbourne Park in Melbourne, Australia

When: Sunday, Jan. 29

Watch: Live at 3:00 a.m. EDT on ESPN 2; Replay at 9:00 a.m. EDT on ESPN 2

Live Stream: Australian Open TV

 

What's At Stake?

Djokovic is looking to win his second straight Australian Open, his third straight grand slam dating back to 2011, to put an exclamation point on his position as the No. 1 player in the world. 

Nadal will try to capture his second Australian Open championship. His lone victory came in 2009 when he defeated Federer. It would also be his 11th career Grand Slam title, tying him with Rod Laver and Bjorn Borg for fourth on the all-time list. 

 

Keys for Nadal Win

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 26:  Rafael Nadal of Spain celebrates winning his semifinal match against Roger Federer of Switzerland during day eleven of the 2012 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 26, 2012 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by C
Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Djokovic is going to be playing on pure adrenaline at this point, so it will imperative for Nadal to take advantage of that by forcing him to run around early and often to wear him down. 

Both of these players have great stamina, but Nadal is coming in on more rest and will be fresh when this match starts. 

In addition to that, it will be imperative for him to use his great court coverage and use the forehand to set up his defense. 

 

Keys for Djokovic Win

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 27:  Novak Djokovic of Serbia celebrates a point in his semifinal match against Andy Murray of Great Britain during day twelve of the 2012 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 27, 2012 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Phot
Mark Kolbe/Getty Images

Ride the adrenaline wave, be able to return Nadal's big serve and use the backhand shot as often as possible. 

Whenever you doubt Djokovic, he comes out and does something that you don't think possible. He has established himself as the best player in the world today. He will need every ounce of energy and skill he has to win this championship. 

 

Prediction

These two are so close that it is going to be difficult to envision a scenario in which this doesn't go at least four sets. That said, Nadal is going to use his speed to make sure Djokovic's legs turn to mush by the end of this match. 

Nadal wins three sets to one