2011 US Open: Why Rafael Nadal Won't Win the 2011 US Open Championships

Michael CasentiCorrespondent IJuly 20, 2011

2011 US Open: Why Rafael Nadal Won't Win the 2011 US Open Championships

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    The US Open is coming nearer and nearer.  In just a month, play will begin at Flushing Meadows in New York.  

    Like with the other Grand Slam tournaments, people will always try to predict who will be the winner.

    And while we wait for the time to come, here are some reasons Rafael Nadal, the current world No. 2, will not be the King of Queens this year around.

Novak Djokovic

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    Novak Djokovic has been the man to beat all year.  He has a near-perfect 48-1 record this year.  Who's to stop him?

    No one, not even Rafael Nadal.  Djokovic has beaten Nadal on all five of their meetings this year, on all surfaces.  Djokovic beat Nadal in Indian Wells, Miami (hard), Madrid, Rome (clay) and Wimbledon (grass).  

    With this record against Djokovic, Nadal will certainly have a mental block when playing Djokovic, much as Federer has with Nadal.

Other Players: Roger Federer, Andy Murray, Juan Martin Del Potro, Etc.

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    Not only does Nadal have to worry about Djokovic, he may also have to deal with the likes of Roger Federer, Andy Murray and Juan Martin del Potro.  

    All three of these players are great players and can give Nadal a run for his money at the US Open.

Surface

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    Rafael Nadal's least favorite surface is hard, especially the hard surface at the US Open.  

    In fact, it was only last year Nadal was able to master this surface.  If Nadal were to lose at a Grand Slam, it would most definitely be at the US Open.

Inconsistencies in Non-Clay Grand Slams

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    Nadal has not been able to defend any non-clay Grand Slam to date.  

    Nadal won the 2008 Wimbledon championships but did not compete in 2009.  Nadal also won the Australian Open title in 2009 but retired against Andy Murray in the quarterfinals the next year.  

    History is not on Nadal's side when defending titles that are not played on his favorite surface.

Possible Injuries

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    Nadal is prone to injuries, and the hardcourts are the most unforgiving of surfaces.  Nadal will be more prone to injuries here than at any other Grand Slam.

Lack of Confidence

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    Nadal is known to gain confidence when playing—and winning—on clay.  Unfortunately for him, Nadal has "only" won the French Open this year.  

    With a subpar clay season, Nadal has been looking more vulnerable and without as much confidence as we saw him last year.  And Novak Djokovic, as mentioned earlier, doesn't help his case either.