Australian Open Draw 2021: How tough is Rafael Nadal’s road to victory?

The 2021 Australian Open official draw took place on Friday.

Second seed Rafael Nadal will play in the first round against against Laslo Djere of Serbia.

Our champ has reached five Australian Open finals but won just one of them, his least successful of the four Grand Slam tournaments. This year, he could play No. 5 Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece in the quarterfinals and No. 4 Daniil Medvedev in the semifinals before a possible final with Djokovic.

Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Projected quarter-finals:

  • [1] Novak Djokovic v [6] Alexander Zverev 
  • [3] Dominic Thiem v [8] Diego Schwartzman
  • [4] Daniil Medvedev v [7] Andrey Rublev 
  • [2] Rafael Nadal v [5] Stefanos Tsitsipas 

Rafa’s potential route to the final:

  • Round 1: Laslo Djere (56)
  • Round 2: Michael Mmoh (177)
  • Round 3: Dan Evans (33)
  • Round 4: Fabio Fognini (17)
  • Quarter-final: Stefanos Tsitsipas (6)
  • Semi-final: Daniil Medvedev (4)
  • Final: Novak Djokovic (1)

View Singles Draw

Our champ finished as runner-up on four occasions – in 2012 (l. to Djokovic), 2014 (l. to Wawrinka), 2017 (l. to Federer) and 2019 (l. to Djokovic). Should Rafa win this year’s tournament, he will join Rod Laver and Roy Emerson as the only players to have won all four majors at least twice.

The year’s first Grand Slam tournament starts on February 8.



  1. A lousy draw for Rafa which is nothing new. Thinking with that back muscle injury, would not like to be on his shoes at moment…as it may not have calmed for Tuesday…but 🙏🙏

  2. Rafa plus hard court plus lower back injury is a tall task but what a great victory it would be to get past what’shisname!

  3. My greatest concern for Rafa is Fabio Fognini, the little devil. He sure knows how to get into Rafa’s skin and destabilize his rrhythm.

    On a good day, Fabio has the game to upset Rafa.

    But as always, we go day by day…………cheers

  4. Many players are being cautious with their bodies by pulling out early from current tournaments in the lead up to the AO. Amongst the withdrawals have been :

    Rafael Nadal – lower back
    Serena Williams – shoulder
    Simona Halep – lower back
    Victoria Azarenka – lower back
    Naomi Osaka – shoulder
    Karolina Muchova – abdominal

    In addition, several players needed medical treatment to finish their matches. Let’s hope that with rest and physio they will be fit enough to compete next week. Fingers crossed that Rafa will be scheduled to play his first match on the latest possible day. All the best for a full recovery, champ.

    • Osaka, Halep and S. Williams are on to their second round. Thank goodness.

      Azarenka and Muchova to play.

  5. Djoker is easier I will choose Zverev and Thiem rather than Tsitsipas and Medvedev. Big chances the first two don’t make it through Quarters

  6. Nadal is in trouble. Best draw for him. He didn’t injure his back. His back will injure him in any 1 of the 7 matches. Best of luck for next year AO 2022.

  7. If Rafa is ailing it would be very difficult for him to compete at his best level. I only hope his back has a
    mild strain and not a disc or tendon, After difficulty with a physical injury a recovery also has to be psychologically as well. Confidence is a big help when you are competing at these very high demand levels.
    We believe in Rafa totally to be at his best are he will not take the court. He is champion in so many important
    areas of life. Go get it Rafael Nadal the trophy is waiting for you. Pamela

  8. Rafa good luck I’m ready to see you play you can do it vamosssssss champ all the love from your fans we love ❤️ 🎾😘👍❤️

  9. If Rafa is healthy , I am confident and hopeful that he will make it to the finals . I’m not selling any opponent short but other than Novak, I think Rafa is the favorite in any given match and will play to that level . let’s hope he is healthy enough to play !

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