Stefanos Tsitsipas had to find another level to hold off Jannik Sinner
Stefanos Tsitsipas has admitted that he needed to find another level in order to get beyond Jannik Sinner.
Powered by his laser-guided serve Tsitsipas battled his way to a 6-4,6-4 lead but found himself losing his grip on the match as Sinner used his power to get on top.
Sinner generated plenty of chances to break Tsitsipas in the first two sets but time and again he came through in the clutch.
Tsitsipas appeared to be physically fading as Sinner rattled through his service games and kept finding ways to put the Greek under pressure.
After Sinner took the third and fourth sets, Tsitsipas hit the reset button and stole himself to snatch control of the match back.
Attacking the Sinner serve early in the decisive stanza, Tsitsipas got the crucial break early and then held on to win a place in the last eight.
“Well, what a great match. Jannik played incredible tennis today,” said Tsitsipas after the match.
“He did not leave me with a lot of options and I’m so glad I overcame this obstacle because it seemed like a mountain.
“At some point it seemed like he was really ahead with the momentum. I was stuck somewhere. Down and very much behind. So I picked up in the fifth set. I hang (sic) in there and just waited for that golden moment to show up.
“I had two games with love on his serve – didn’t convert the first one, he came back, and I didn’t get the other one on my last break point that I had. So I’m happy. Things went my way.”
Tsitsipas said that he recognised that had to change things up to turn the match in the fifth set.
“Look, it’s difficult. I was trying to analyse it a little bit to try and see what’s going on. I was playing some big foreheads and some big shots. [It] didn’t to me feel like it was too much defensive.
“I was hitting the ball and he seemed to like that after a certain point. I felt like he was really getting into the rhythm of this fast ball that I was giving him. And I tried to change it up, but it wasn’t easy. He wasn’t making a lot of unforced errors, he wasn’t giving much. And the only option was to stay as solid as possible or to just hold my games on my serve.”
Watch every match from the Australian Open live and exclusive on discovery+ and Eurosport.
ATP Dubai draw: Andy Murray handed yet another horrible route while Daniil Medvedev returns
No easy matches for Andy Murray at the Dubai Tennis Championships.
Legend Andre Agassi reportedly set to land high-profile tennis job
Andre Agassi set for first high-profile job in tennis in several years.
Carlos Alcaraz fitness update ahead of North American swing as he turns into a ball boy for his brother
Carlos Alcaraz is on the mend and he has even been able to act as a ball boy for his brother.
Andy Murray assesses Jannik Sinner’s Wimbledon chances and explains unique quality needed to play well on grass
Andy Murray backs Jannik Sinner to “go on to win more” Grand Slams, but admits you need one unique feature to do well at Wimbledon.
‘Angry’ Iga Swiatek determined ‘to let it go and accept it’ after Dubai exit
“I was so out of power and tired,” admits Iga Swiatek.
Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic enjoy mile-high reunion
Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic had a surprise meeting on a flight to the USA.
Anna Kalinskaya highlights her key to stunning upset of Iga Swiatek
Anna Kalinskaya knew that she had to stay calm and play positively.
Gael Monfils drops another retirement hint: ‘Tennis is good but I miss my daughter
Gael Monfils is caught in between.
Who are Stefanos Tsitsipas’ sponsors? Red Bull, Adidas and Wilson are his biggest backers
Who backs the Greek No 1?
Who is Jakub Mensik? The rising star who got an exclusive invite from Novak Djokovic
Just who is Jakub Mensik?