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Tistisipas sinks Sinner in Monte-Carlo classic


The Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters brings the best out of Stefanos Tsitsipas.

The Greek captured the biggest win of his season on Saturday when he rallied to defeat World No. 2 Jannik Sinner 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 to move to within one win of capturing his third title in the Principality.

In a fiercely competitive match, where both bludgeoned the ball with pace, it was Tsitsipas who found a way as he so often has at the clay-court event. The Greek outmanoeuvred Sinner with his heavy forehand and rallied from 2-4 in the third set to advance after two hours and 38 minutes.

“It was tennis at its highest level that I have been able to play. Jannik was an extremely difficult opponent and it can be seen throughout the year so far. He has been very consistent and I could see that throughout today with his game,” Tsitsipas said. “He is one of the toughest opponents I have faced so far and to find ways when there weren’t that many, I am proud of that. He gave me a very difficult game and way I overcame it is true excellence.”

Having arrived in the Principality with a modest 11-6 record for 2024, Tsitsipas appears to have been galvanised by returning to an event where he lifted back-to-back titles in 2021 and 2022. The Greek will compete in his seventh ATP Masters 1000 final when he takes on Novak Djokovic or Casper Ruud.

“It helps a lot knowing I have a win like this under my belt. Having a win like this and getting to the levels of tennis again brings a lot of satisfaction to me,” Tsitsipas said. “When there is a lot of work put in each day these are the type of matches you are aiming for.”

The 25-year-old is up three spots to No. 9 in the PIF ATP Live Rankings, having dropped outside the Top 10 for the first time in five years in February. Playing with a renewed sense of freedom this week, Tsitsipas backed up impressive wins against Alexander Zverev and Karen Khachanov with an aggressive display against Sinner, who struggled with a leg injury in the third set, twice receiving medical treatment.

Tsitsipas now leads the second seed 6-3 in the pair’s Lexus ATP Head2Head series, with his victory against the Italian his first Top 3 win since 2022 when he beat Daniil Medvedev in Cincinnati.

It is just the second time Sinner has suffered defeat this season. The Italian, competing in his second Monte-Carlo semi-final, leaves the Principality holding the most wins (25) and most titles (3) on Tour in 2024.

Tsitsipas began quickly in front of a vocal crowd on a sunbaked Court Rainier III. The Greek gained an early break to lead 2-1 and was dominant behind his first serve, winning 13/14 points on his opening delivery to limit Sinner to zero break point opportunities on return.

Sinner responded at the start of the second set, though, upping his intensity and making more returns to race 3-0 ahead. The Italian struck 14 winners in the second set according to Infosys ATP Stats and produced his best level when serving out for 5-3 as fended off five break points in the game to level.

Both players continued to improve as the match went into the third set, with Sinner racing into a 4-1 lead. However, the Italian seemed to tweak his knee in the seventh game of the set, receiving treatment at 4-3. Tsitsipas came out firing on the resumption, break immediately to level for 4-4 before he hit with brutal power off both wings to seal a statement win as Sinner physically faded quickly.

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