Stefanos Tsitsipas battled bast Alexander Zverev at the end of a quality semi-finals match at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia. With a 4-6, 6-3, 6-3 score, the Greek has reached his first final in Rome, where he will face either Novak Djokovic or Casper Ruud.
“It was a battle of the serves. Battle of being able to take that first shot after the serve and really put quite a lot of pressure to it, which I think I was able to do really well in the third set,” explained the fourth seed on how he saw the match: “I was able to return a few on the third a bit more than him, get the ball in play, stay in those rallies, not give away much. I think at some point I saw he was a little bit impatient, went for a few, and didn’t succeed in his effort. I was really trying to stay there as long as possible and make every single one count”.
“I think I gave away the break too early in the second set,” commented Zverev, who prized his opponent for the quality tennis he produced in order to take the win: “I think since then he started playing much better. I think my level went down a little bit. I got a little bit tired, to be honest. I played the final Madrid. Played long matches here. I mean, I’m not a machine. I’m a human being. This is normal. But he played well in the end. He deserves to win. He played better than me in the second and third set”.
Despite a fairly evenly split crowd, Tsitsipas enjoyed the support of the fans, something that makes this tournament very close to his heart: “Rome is closest to my country. It almost feels like it could have been in Athens, it could have been held in Athens. I’m glad that I get people to visit me from the fatherland to see me play here”.