Stefanos Tsitsipas: Beating Rafael Nadal on clay makes it even more special

Stefanos Tsitsipas celebrating PA

Stefanos Tsitsipas says he was “in the zone” during his stunning win over Rafael Nadal in the semi-final of the Madrid Open.

The Greek went into the match having lost his three previous encounters against the 17-time Grand Slam champion, but he finally got the better of his more illustrious opponent on Saturday.

Tsitsipas held firm to win 6-4, 2-6, 6-3 and naturally he rated a win over the King of Clay on the red dirt as one of his best wins.

“It means the world. I’m really happy that I proved myself today. I played one of my best games this year,” he said. “I’m really happy that I’m fighting, I’m in the zone. I’m enjoying tennis at its fullest potential. It’s really nice to be able to play this way. Today’s victory is just an unbelievable feeling.”

He added: “You cannot imagine the relief. It’s unbelievable. I don’t want to say this, but it almost felt like I lost hope at some point. [I lost] three in a row [against him].

“I felt in Toronto when I played him I was very close and this match kind of gave me a bit of confidence I can do it in the future, but then it was too much. [I’m] really happy that I overcame this and dealt with it mentally. Beating him on clay makes it even more special.”

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