Tennis: Sinner sees off Medvedev to reach final of ATP Finals

AFP , Saturday 18 Nov 2023

Jannik Sinner reached the final of the ATP Finals on Saturday, beating Daniil Medvedev 6-3, 6-7 (4/7), 6-1 in front of passionate home support in Turin.

Italy's Jannik Sinner celebrates after winning the semi-final match against Russia's Daniil Medvedev at the ATP Finals tennis tournament in Turin on November 18, 2023. Photo: AFP


World number four Sinner is the first Italian to make the final of the season-ending tournament. He will face either Novak Djokovic or Carlos Alcaraz on Sunday.

The 22-year-old now the chance to win the biggest title of his career at the end of his best season, in which he has won four tour-level titles.

Two of those wins, in Vienna and Beijing were earned by beating Medvedev in the final. The Russian is ranked third in the world.

"It's very difficult to play against him, but I found a way to win. I'm really happy with my performance, let's see how things go tomorrow," said Sinner.

"It's an incredible feeling... It's a privilege to play under this kind of pressure... The crowd has given me so much energy and for me it's a pleasure to play in front of home fans."

Sinner took early control in game four of the first set when he broke Medvedev's serve and then fought back from 0-30 down in the next game to take a 4-1 lead.

Huge applause rang around the arena when Sinner served out the set, but Medvedev did not immediately wilt in front of the vociferous support for the home favourite.

The pair went at it toe-to-toe in the second set, holding their respective serves and slugging it out in long baseline rallies.

Medvedev eventually struck back in the tie-break, his powerful service game too much for Sinner who started to show signs of being ground down, even if it was the Russian who called for treatment straight after drawing level.

But an inexplicably bad second game in the third set from Medvedev, ending with a double fault, handed a break of serve to Sinner.

Medvedev became increasingly irritated with his own errors and the partisan crowd, following up one lost point by gesturing towards a spectator after smashing his racket into the floor.

The game was up for Medvedev once he was broken again in game six.

Sinner needed nearly the best part of 10 minutes and three break points to get the double break and close in on victory, which he sealed with a perfect service game to love.

Saturday's other semi-final promises to be a blockbuster clash as Djokovic continues his bid for a record-breaking seventh finals title.

The world number one has a burgeoning rivalry with Alcaraz. as the Spaniard is already a two-time Grand Slam champion at the age of 20 and beat the Serbian in an epic five-set Wimbledon final.

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