ATP Monte-Carlo: Tsitsipas has everything to establish his reign but Davidovich Fokina is sticking to his dream

the context

It’s definitely difficult to see clearly at the start of the season on the ATP circuit. Before the fighting on the Rock began, two players stood out for very different reasons. In the absence of the injured Rafael Nadal and Daniil Medvedev, all eyes initially focused on the comeback of Novak Djokovic, who only played in Dubai in February. Also, many wondered if Carlos Alcaraz would confirm his first Masters 1000 title in Miami on clay. But defeated from the start, neither the Serb nor the Spaniard were the expected regular players.

ATP Monte-Carlo

Tsitsipas qualified for his 2nd final in a row: “I’m not the boss in Monte-Carlo yet”

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Instead, the unexpected Alejandro Davidovich Fokina took the spotlight. Grave of Djokovic, he could have been satisfied with the title of hero of the tournament start since so many exploits remain without future on the tennis planet. But the 46th player in the world has actually surfed the wave, overcoming the obstacles one by one with bluffing mental resources. Taylor Fritz, who fell in the quarterfinals, and Grigor Dimitrov, who was hit by the post at half-time, can attest: “Foki” has resources. Far from succumbing to the frustration of sometimes opposing scenarios, he firmly believed in his destiny after beating world No. 1 despite losing six in his first nine tournaments of the year.

Djoko was out of order: the summary of his loss to Davidovich Fokina

Seeing Stefanos Tsitsipas in the final of a Masters 1000 is certainly less unexpected. But the Greek has in common with Davidovich Fokina that his pre-Monte Carlo momentum didn’t speak in his favour. However, he had reached the semi-finals of the Australian Open just a few weeks after his right elbow surgery. But that performance looked like a sham as he later encountered difficulties. Smothered by Jenson Brooksby at Indian Wells, swept away by Alcaraz in Miami, he has leveled off lately and the season on clay, in which he has to defend more than half his points, looked more than dangerous.

But returning to the scene of his triumph last year has revitalized him. His insane quarter-final against Diego Schwartzman could be a major turning point in his season. In total control, then on the edge of the abyss, Tsitsipas got away with character. A win that’s as epic as it is potentially foundational, as his demonstration against Alexander Zverev in two halves seems to suggest. He is more experienced than Davidovich in such situations and has the opportunity to come back to the fore as he has been playing second fiddle lately.

face to face

  • It won’t be the first time the two men have crossed swords. Stefanos Tsitsipas leads 2-0 in his duels against Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.
  • The Greek won last year after being eliminated in the quarterfinals of the same tournament (7-5 ​​approx). What inspires revenge thoughts in the Spaniard.
  • Tsitsipas’ second victory was a few weeks ago in the first round of the indoor hard court tournament in Rotterdam (7: 5, 6: 7, 6: 4).

1h15 to the final: Tsitsipas swept Zverev

your journey

Stefanos Tsitsipas

1st Round: Bye as Set 3
2nd round: defeated Fabio Fognini [ITA] 6-3, 6-0
1/8 Finals: Losses to Laslo Djere [SER] 7-5, 7-6(1)
1/4 Finale: Defeat Diego Schwartzman [ARG/N.12] 6-2, 6-7(3), 6-4
1/2 final: defeated Alexander Zverev [ALL/N.2] 6-4, 6-2

Alejandro Davidovich Fokina

1st round: Defeats Marcos Giron [E-U] 7-5, 6-3
2nd round: defeats Novak Djokovic [SER/N.1] 6-3, 6-7(5), 6-1
1/8th round: beats David Goffin [BEL/WC] 6-4, 6-1
1/4 Finals: Beat Taylor Fritz [E-U/N.10] 2-6, 6-4, 6-3
1/2 Finals: Beat Grigor Dimitrov [BUL] 6-4, 6-7(2), 6-3

said

Stefanos Tsitsipas: “I’m not really the new boss of Monte-Carlo. Other players have done that much better than me, I’m just at the beginning of what I started. We already had great fights with Alejandro, I have to be very well prepared. I feel like my game is over, I have to stay focused.”

Tsitsipas qualified for his 2nd final in a row: “I’m not the boss in Monte-Carlo yet”

Alejandro Davidovich Fokina: “I’m tired, but I keep pushing my limits. I’m so happy to be in the final and for my team: they always tell me that I have more resources than I believe in myself. I watched all the Rafa (Nadal) finals here and thought I might be there one day.”

Three stats to keep an eye on

3. Spain has an impressive pool of champions, with three of its representatives qualifying for the first three Masters 1000 finals: Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in Monte-Carlo follows Rafael Nadal in Indian Wells and Carlos Alcaraz in Miami. This is the third time a nation has achieved such results, following US in 1993 (Courier, Washington and Sampras) and 2001 (Sampras, Gambill, Agassi).

17 If he wins Sunday’s final, Alejandro Davidovich Fokina, currently 46th in the world, would be the lowest-ranked player to win the Masters 1000 since Tomas Berdych at Indian Wells in 2005 17 years ago. The Czech was then the 50th player in the world and had beaten Ivan Ljubicic.

252. Stefanos Tsitsipas spent 252 minutes less on the pitch than Alejandro Davidovich Fokina, meaning he saved 4:12 hours compared to the Spaniard. Aside from the first round, the Greek has actually played a game less and struggled a lot less on the pitch, aside from his quarter-final against Schwartzman.

Our opinion

The favorite of this final is clear, he doesn’t skimp on the wrong tension and his name is Stefanos Tsitsipas. And for a number of reasons, starting with the placement of the two men (5th vs. 46th) and their experience in handling such occasions. While Alejandro Davidovich Fokina will experience a final at the ATP circuit for the first time in his career, it will be the 19th for the Greek and the 4th in the Masters 1000.

A shock in the 2nd set, but Davidovich Fokina holds his first final

Add to that the fact that Tsitsipas is the defending champion and has emerged victorious from the first two duels between the two men and it’s clear the scales are tipping in his favour. You had to see Davidovich Fokina’s joy at the end of his semi-final win to understand that this final is a fantastic achievement in itself. He too has given a lot in this tournament, certainly too much, both physically and emotionally since his performance against Djokovic.

According to his own statements, the Spaniard pushed his limits against Dimitrov. Will he make it again? We can doubt it. Nevertheless, he is on cloud nine and has nothing to lose in the final. This daze could make him dangerous if he manages to recover. But Tsitsipas has enough to approach this final with composure given the form he has shown against Zverev. We can be sure: he has not finished his tournament and he will not run out of gas.

Our prediction: Stefanos Tsitsipas in straight sentences.

ATP Monte-Carlo

Davidovich after qualifying for the Monte Carlo final: “I pushed my limits”

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ATP Monte-Carlo

A great defense and a foul by Zverev to close the game, Tsitsipas reaches the final

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