It was a difficult night the one that just passed for Jannik Sinner, who had to fight hard to have the better of Alexander Shevchenko at the end of three tough sets 6-3 6-7(4) 6-2. The lucky loser played a great match with his aggressive tennis and scared the local crowd as much as his opponent for two sets, before a turnaround in the decider, when Sinner finally put the match back to his terms. The Italian was so focused in the third set, that he did not even realise he had won the match.
“It was tough today, because I did not my play best game,” he admitted and the amount of errors that leaked from he racket proved just that: “but I found the key in the third set. I knew we would have a change of balls early in the third, so I used it to make the ball jump a bit more. He plays a linear tennis so I knew this would disturb his game… I also changed my return position and that helped”.
A very good proof of the tactical awareness of Sinner, especially after a second set where things did not go according to plans.
“It is difficult to change your plan and execution when you do not feel comfortable on court,” he admitted and some of his awkward movements, especially around the net confirm his feelings: “I should have used more the backhand down-the-line, but I have improved my volleying. I need to force myself to implement these changes during my matches”.
Melodrama in the Roman ampitheatre 🎭 pic.twitter.com/kszWTXkz9m— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) May 14, 2023
The next chance will be against Argentine Francisco Cerundolo, whom he knows well having played many times already.
“He is a tough opponent, he has improved the backhand a lot lately, he has a strong serve and a powerful forehand. So I will have to improve my game, but I hope the crowd will help me, like it helped me today when I most needed it”.