Stefanos Tsitsipas defends Monte Carlo title to sound clay court warning
Stefanos Tsitsipas became just the fourth man to defend a Monte-Carlo Masters crown Sunday when he dispatched Spaniard Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 6-3, 7-6(3) to capture his second ATP Masters 1000 title.
Tsitsipas started stronger and quickly took control of the match by claiming the first set.
Davidovich Fokina fought back in the second forcing it into a tiebreaker but the Greek star held out to win his first title of the 2022 season.
“I am very proud of myself,” Tsitsipas said in his on-court interview. “Things weren’t going well at one point, but I managed to stay composed to finish the match off. I am really proud with the belief I put in my game. Sometimes you doubt yourself, but it is always important to keep your head high.”
Tsitsipas appears to have found another level to his game on clay and is going to be a force to be reckoned with on the European swing.
“He fought in moments I didn’t expect him to fight,” Tsitsipas said. “He can hit incredible winners out of nowhere and play unpredictably. But I was able to minimise that. I knew he would be a dangerous opponent but that is a great win for me. I think we will see great results from him in the future.”
Davidovich Fokina enjoyed his maiden run to an ATP Tour final this week, having earned wins over Marcos Giron, World No 1 Novak Djokovic, David Goffin, Indian Wells titlist Taylor Fritz and 2018 semi-finalist Grigor Dimitrov.
The popular 22-year-old Spaniard was aiming to become the first unseeded winner at the Monte Carlo Country Club since Thomas Muster in 1992.
Despite the defeat, Davidovich Fokina is projected to rise to a career-high No 27 in the ATP Rankings following his dream run at the Monte Carlo Country Club.
Having arrived in Monte Carlo holding just a 4-9 record on the season and having lost all three of his previous tour-level semi-finals the performance was nonetheless a big moment for him.
Tsitsipas is seeded first for the Barcelona stop of the ATP tour enjoying a bye into the second round.
Martina Navratilova opens up on cancer battle in emotional interview
Tennis legend Martina Navratilova has opened up on her cancer battle.
Miami Open draw: Andy Murray on collision course with Carlos Alcaraz
Andy Murray is lined up with a Round of 32 meeting against world No 1 Carlos Alcaraz.
Naomi Osaka sets out to become a mental health champion
Naomi Osaka is out to hit a winner for mental health.
What titles has Daniil Medvedev won?
Daniil Medvedev is a feared opponent on hard courts all over the world.
What does John McEnroe think of Carlos Alcaraz?
Carlos Alcaraz has received the John McEnroe seal of approval.
Daniil Medvedev offers mock thanks to Indian Wells court after ‘toxic relationship’
Daniil Medvedev was in good spirits after losing the Indian Wells final.
Elena Rybakina finally gets one back in rivarly with Aryna Sabalenka
Elena Rybakina avenged her Australian Open defeat with a championship match triumph at Indian Wells.
Carlos Alcaraz savours ‘crazy’ Indian Wells triumph and return to No 1
Carlos Alcaraz is thrilled to be back on top of the world.
Why Elena Rybakina’s Indian Wells win could be a breakthrough moment
Elena Rybakina is emerging as the biggest threat to Iga Swiatek at the top of the women’s game after Indian Wells win.
Carlos Alcaraz banishes Novak Djokovic ‘asterisk’ snipe as he reclaims No 1 ranking
Carlos Alcaraz confirmed he was a worthy world No 1 after his stunning win against Daniil Medvedev in Indian Wells.