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Defending Monte Carlo champion Tsitsipas sends Zverev to return to final


Defending champion Stefanos Tsitsipas advanced to the Monte Carlo Masters final after knocking out second-seeded Alexander Zverev 6-4, 6-2 on Saturday.

Tsitsipas lined up the first grand final of the season on clay against Alejandro Davidovich Fokina, the Spaniard who knocked out Novak Djokovic in the second round.

Davidovich Fokina reached his first ATP final beating Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov 6-4, 6-7(2), 6-3.

Tsitsipas dominated Zverev on clay like the Greek had never done before. Zverev recovered from a two-time breakdown in the opening set which Tsitsipas took with a third break in the 10th game.

Tsitsipas, ranked at No. 5, then broke twice more in the second set and improved his record against No. 3 Zverev to 7-3, on clay at 3-0. The German won both of his hard-court competitions last year.

Tsitsipas was on the pitch just 12 hours after winning a lengthy quarter-final.

“I had to take my soul out,” Tsitsipas said.

“I wanted to stay on the court as much as necessary, trying to get rallies going and making them physical. That worked in my favour.”

Unseeded Davidovich Fokina easily won Dimitrov’s first set but squandered the chance at 5-4 in the second to win the semi-final in straight sets. The third set was tense. Davidovich Fokina overcame a break and 2-0 down.

“I pushed myself to the limit,” Davidovich Fokina said. “I’m glad I pushed myself into this.”

The Spaniard will try to prevent Tsitsipas from becoming Monte Carlo’s first repeat champion since Rafael Nadal in 2018. Tsitsipas is 2-0 against him, including in February in the Netherlands.




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