Jannik Sinner Makes History at ATP Masters
Jannik Sinner, the 24-year-old Italian tennis player, has achieved a remarkable feat by becoming the first Italian to qualify for the semi-finals of the ATP Masters. This significant milestone was also made possible by Novak Djokovic, the world number 1, who secured his own spot in the semi-finals.
Sinner’s Flawless Performance
Sinner displayed an impeccable performance in the group stage, winning all three matches. However, his latest victory against Danish player Holger Rune was hard-fought, with a final score of 6-2, 5-7, 6-4. Reflecting on the match, Sinner admitted, “It was a very challenging game. I had never defeated him before. I started well, but then it became complicated. Against Holger, each set felt like starting from scratch.” Sinner also struggled with back pain during the second set, which added to the difficulty.
Looking ahead to the semi-finals, Sinner said, “We will now see what is possible to achieve on Saturday.” Interestingly, Sinner had already secured his place in the semi-finals even before his last match. It was his close friend on the circuit, Hubert Hurkacz from Poland, who helped him achieve this historic qualification by taking a set from Novak Djokovic.
Djokovic’s Quest for Records
Despite facing a tough challenge, Djokovic managed to secure a victory against Hurkacz in three sets (7-6 (7/1), 4-6, 6-1). However, losing the second set due to a slump in his performance almost cost Djokovic his place in the tournament. If Sinner had lost against Rune, Djokovic would have been eliminated since he had previously lost to the Italian.
Reflecting on the situation, Djokovic explained, “It’s no longer in our hands; it’s the format of this tournament that requires such circumstances. I was aware of this before playing this match.” Djokovic also acknowledged the challenges posed by Sinner, stating, “He is a player that I really admire off the court, but he often causes me problems with his serve when we face each other.”
Despite moments of nervousness during the match, Djokovic remains focused on his personal life as well. He mentioned that his children were arriving that evening, and he planned to spend time with them. However, he expressed uncertainty about watching Sinner’s upcoming match. Djokovic, who is set to finish the year as the world number 1 for the eighth time, still has the opportunity to claim his seventh victory in the Masters tournament.
Exciting Semi-Finals Await
Djokovic will face the winner of the red group in the semi-finals on Saturday. The outcome of the red group will be determined on Friday. Russian player Daniel Medvedev has already secured one of the top two spots in the group with two wins. The final spot in the semi-finals will be contested between Spanish player Carlos Alcaraz, ranked number 2 in the world, and German player Alexander Zverev, both of whom have secured one victory each. Alcaraz will face Medvedev on Friday at 2:30 p.m., while Zverev will compete against Russian player Andrey Rublev in the evening.