Rafael Nadal has been outstanding in 2017 so far and the Spaniard will be looking to win his second title of the year at the 2017 Barcelona Open but he will have to get past 20-year old Hyeon Chung first. The two are set to face off in the quarter-finals of the Barcelona Open and Nadal will be the clear favourite to win as he targets his tenth title here.
Nadal became the first tennis player in the Open Era to win a single tournament on ten occasions when he won the Monte Carlo Masters. The Spaniard finished as the runner-up at the Australian Open, Acapulco and Miami and has a really good chance to gain some valuable points during the clay court season as he looks to get back into the top four too.
With Nadal branded the King of Clay, the fact that his rivals Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic have been struggling in 2017, these wins during the clay court season could certainly help Nadal re-establish himself as one of the best.
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His first two matches at the Barcelona Open have not caused him so much trouble. He dropped just three games so far against Brazilian, Rogerio Dutra Silva in the first round and eased past Kevin Anderson in the next round 6-3, 6-4. The Spaniard was really impressed win his performance against Anderson.
"It wasn't a day where I took a lot of free points because the court was very heavy. But I was serving well, at a good speed and changing directions well. I had the chance to hit my forehand after my serve and take control of the rallies, so I'm very happy with how I played," ATP's official website quoted Nadal as saying.
Despite Murray taking part at the Barcelona Open, Nadal will be expected to defend his title here and while he is being tipped to reach the semi-finals, people should not yet rule out his opponent in the quarter-finals just yet.
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While Chung has not yet won any major title yet, he is regarded as one of the most promising tennis players on the circuit at the moment. He won two Challenger titles n Kaohsiung and Kobe, finished as a runner-up in Nanchang and reached the semi-finals in Ningbo and Suzhou. In 2017, he added another challenger title to his name as he won in Maui.
He has not been able to make his name in the ATP tour as of yet but has come to life in Barcelona this year. The 20-year old defeated Ernests Gulbis and Guido Pella in the qualifiers, Denis Istomin in the first round, Philipp Kohlschreiber in the second round and Alexander Zverev in his previous match.
The Korean has defeated some big names on his way reach his first quarter-final at the 500 level and there is every chance he could cause more upsets along the way.
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"This is my first quarter-final at the 500 level, so I'm very excited. I tried to be focused on every single point and stay calm. That was the key. When I started playing tennis, I wanted to play Roger Federer or Rafael Nadal, so I'm very excited about tomorrow," Chung said.
Where to watch
The Barcelona Open quarter-final clash between Rafael Nadal and Hyeon Chung is set to start at 3:20 pm local time, 6:50 pm, 9:20 am EST.
TV and live streaming information
India: TV: Ten 1 HD and Ten 2.
Spain: TV: TVE, Teledeporte
Canada: TV: RDS.
UK: TV: Sky Sports Mix. Live streaming: Sky Go.
South Africa: TV: SuperSport. Live streaming: SuperSport live streaming
USA: TV: ESPN, Tennis Channel: Live Streaming: Tennis Channel Live.