Stefanos Tsitsipas will not defend his title acquired last year. Defeated in three sets, 6-4 4-6 6-2 by Rafael Nadal, he was indeed eliminated from the London Masters. The Mallorcan retains his chances of winning the only trophy missing from his huge list of achievements. Nadal will challenge Daniil Medvedev on Saturday in the semi-finals.
This is the 6th time that Rafael Nadal has reached the last four in the “ATP Finals”, the first since 2015. Always looking for a first coronation in this tournament, he took a nice revenge on his “misadventure” of the ‘last year: he was then eliminated in the group stage despite his 2 victories.
Completely master of his destiny this time, Rafael Nadal nevertheless played to scare himself Thursday night. Imperial on his serve until 6-4 4-5, he offered the second set to his opponent by committing a double fault on the first break point he encountered! But he recovered well.
Stefanos Tsitsipas has, it is true, helped him a lot: the Greek glued to 1-1 after losing his entry service, but he conceded in the wake of a new break from which he never recovered. Rafael Nadal has therefore tightened his guard to celebrate his … 71st success in a row in a match for which he won the initial set.
ats / jfk