ATP Cup 2020: Final 8 teams ranked with Rafael Nadal’s Spain still favorites

Rafael Nadal at the ATP Cup (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images)
Rafael Nadal at the ATP Cup (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images) /

The Final 8 lineup at the ATP Cup is now known after six days of group-stage action and we have ranked the remaining teams on their winning chances.

There were some surprise moments in the group stage of the ATP Cup, but ultimately most of the teams who were expected to progress to the Final 8 did so.

That includes Rafael Nadal’s Spain, who came into the event in Australia as favorites following their win at the Davis Cup on home soil in November.

Nadal sealed Spain’s third consecutive 3-0 win in the group stage on Wednesday when he overcame a display that saw him make 36 unforced errors as well as struggle to cope with the intense Perth heat during the day session, ultimately beating Japan’s Yoshihito Nishioka 7-6 (7-4) 6-4.

He then partnered Pablo Carreno Busta in the doubles too, his opening appearance in that format at the ATP Cup giving him a fourth overall victory, as Spain won a close contest 10-6 in the match tie-break.

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Novak Djokovic also goes into the Final 8 having won all three of his singles matches and a doubles clash during the tournament so far.

His singles meeting on day six was against Cristian Garin and he comfortably came out on top 6-3 6-3 in 72 minutes as part of Serbia’s 2-1 win over Chile.

France and South Africa are both out after each team failed to get the 3-0 result against the other that would have seen them through as one of the two best group runners-up.

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The French team eventually lost that tie 2-1, while Dominic Thiem was beaten in his second match out of three this week against Hubert Hurkacz, with both Austria and Poland failing to progress.

Here, based on a review of the latest betting odds for the tournament, we summarise the Final 8 teams in the ATP Cup.

The nations are listed in order of their chances of winning ahead of the knockout stage in Sydney.

ATP Cup Final 8

8: Belgium

David Goffin is a decent player and Steve Darcis had a good win over Cameron Norrie, but both men have also suffered poor defeats this week and are likely to be exposed against improved opposition. The fact they play Spain in the quarterfinals also contributes to their placing at 8.

7: Great Britain

GB have done well in the absence of Andy Murray to recover from an opening defeat and win Group C. With Jamie Murray around they will be competitive in the doubles but it is hard to see Dan Evans and Norrie consistently beating some of the top names left in the tournament.

6: Argentina

Argentina were underestimated by many before the group stage and did well to progress. However, it is a tough ask for Diego Schwartzman to compete in three consecutive matches against Daniil Medvedev, Djokovic and Nadal, which is Argentina’s possible path to victory. They will do well to get past Russia in the last eight, but can be pleased at their efforts.

5: Canada

Canada were the last team to book their place in the FInal 8 but in Denis Shapovalov and Felix Auger-Aliassime they have two young players capable of beating anyone on their day. Shapovalov said prior to their nervous wait to claim the final runners-up spot on Day 6 that they could do some “damage” if they sneak through. They did make it and he was right.

4: Serbia

It was an initial surprise to see Serbia rated at fourth given the results of Djokovic this week, which included an impressive win over Gael Monfils. But drawing Canada in the quarterfinals is an extremely difficult test and, even if they get through that, Djokovic’s teammates Dusan Lajovic and Viktor Troicki might just find the going too tough against world-class opposition.

3: Russia

Three ties and three wins. Eight matches won and only one defeat. With one of the world’s best hard-court players in Medvedev, a distinguished number 2 player in Karen Khachanov and Marat Safin as captain, Russia should not be written off.

2: Australia

The hosts have been superb, winning all three group ties 3-0 despite having Nick Kyrgios injured for one tie and Alex de Minaur rested for another. If they get past Team GB, a thrilling semifinal against Spain could be in prospect.

1: Spain

Nadal has already led Spain to Davis Cup glory and, despite not hitting his peak against Nishioka, usually reserves his best for the big occasions. Spain did have an easy group so have not yet been fully tested, but the immense value of having world number 10 Roberto Bautista Agut as the second player should become clear once it gets to the big Final 8 matches.

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Australia v Great Britain and Argentina v Russia get things going on Day 7, before Spain face Belgium on Friday and the pick of the quarterfinals takes place between Serbia and Canada.