Berrettini Blasts Through In Belgrade

Matteo Berrettini earned his first win since the Australian Open on Wednesday, defeating fellow Italian Marco Cecchinato 6-4, 6-3 to reach the quarter-finals of the Serbia Open in Belgrade.

The second seed has struggled with an abdominal injury, which forced him to withdraw in Melbourne ahead of his fourth-round match. This is just his second tournament since, and last week he lost his Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters opener against Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.

“First of all I’m happy to be back on the court,” Berrettini said. “It was tough for me. I never had this kind of injury, so I didn’t really know how it would get better, get worse. It was tough. Also mentally, it’s not easy to go and serve full [on] when you know that something happened there.

“But I’m happy now. I’m happy with my performance and also for my physical conditioning. I think it’s good. In this moment, with my team, we said that I have to play as many matches as possible, so that is what we are trying to do.”

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The Last Time… With Matteo Berrettini

But Berrettini’s performance against the 2018 Roland Garros semi-finalist was a step towards his best form. The World No. 10 broke Cecchinato’s serve three times and saved all three break points he faced to advance after one hour and 21 minutes.

Berrettini did not overplay against the gritty World No. 93. Instead, he played with heavy topspin deep in the court to push Cecchinato back, and that paid dividends in the key rallies.

Before his injury, Berrettini got off to a strong start to his 2021 season. The Italian earned three Top 15 wins to lead his country to the final of the ATP Cup.

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“Confidence is something that goes away, it comes back. For sure I know that is my level. I know that I can play that kind of tennis,” Berrettini said. “I work hard to be there, to be in good shape. It obviously was a shame. I was sad about my injury, but I know that I can play and I can play well on clay, on grass, on hard.

“It’s just about time. I need time to be back, to be back at my best shape. But I think today was a big step in that direction.”

The Italian will next play home favourite fifth seed Filip Krajinovic, who beat countryman Nikola Milojevic 6-1, 6-1. Berrettini beat Krajinovic in their only previous ATP Head2Head meeting in the Budapest final in 2019.

“It’s going to be very tough. He’s Top 10, he’s a huge champion,” Krajinovic said. “He’s very tough to play against. I played him once in the final of an ATP [Tour event] and he beat me, so I know how to play. It’s going to be very tricky, very tough, but I will give my best playing on my court. We’ll see how it goes.”

The Last Time… With Matteo Berrettini

Matteo Berrettini has been a fixture in the Top 10 of the FedEx ATP Rankings since October 2019, and he is currently working his way back to form after suffering an abdominal strain earlier this year. The Italian is the second seed at this week’s Serbia Open in Belgrade.

ATPTour.com caught up with the World No. 10 to learn the last time…

I missed a flight?
I have never missed a flight before, but I’ve been close and I’m grateful to be a good runner!

I lost something important?
Two or three weeks ago I left my phone in a taxi and I had to call different taxi companies to locate it. I gave them a description of the taxi and thankfully they found the driver and brought it back.

I paid for a court or bought my own tennis balls?
I think I was in Boca Raton a few weeks ago and I bought some tennis balls, around $5 per tube. I didn’t pay for the court.

Being famous or recognised helped?
With COVID and stuff it’s not easy to go anywhere. But there was one time, a long time ago, I was with a friend in a queue and the security guard recognised me, so [they] let us in quicker.

I strung my own tennis racquet?
I used to string my racquets all the time when I was in Rome growing up. It wasn’t cheap to string racquets, so I bought a stringing machine. I probably last strung a racquet a few weeks ago, when I was in Rome. It doesn’t take me long. I’m not professional, but I would definitely be confident to use the racquet in a match.

I cooked for myself or others?
I normally do when I am in Monaco with my girlfriend [WTA player Ajla Tomljanovic], cooking pasta with cheese. It’s amazing and next time we’re together, I’ll cook it for her.

I met my childhood idol?
It was a long time ago. I think the first time I hit with Roger [Federer], in 2015, was a big thing for me. I was so nervous and shaking. I was sweating so much before we started hitting. That’s a great memory.

I last took a selfie photo?
I’m not a fan of a selfie, so I wouldn’t ask my idol for a photo. After the 2019 US Open, when I reached the semi-finals, this Roman actor, Carlo Verdone, who is really famous in Italy, came to watch my practice. I was about to ask him for a selfie, but he asked me first. That was cool.

Berrettini Gets Doubles Win in Belgrade

© Marko Djokovic/Starsport

Matteo Berrettini and Andrea Vavassori advance in Belgrade.

In Barcelona, Tecau and Krawietz upset second seeds Granollers and Zeballos

On Tuesday at the Serbia Open, Matteo Berrettini took to the doubles court with Italian countryman Andrea Vavassori for a 7-6 (7), 6-4 win over Andres Molteni and Frederik Nielsen. Berrettini will play singles as the second seed on Wednesday against Marco Cecchinato with the doubles quarter-finals set for Thursday.

Croatian twins Matej Sabanov and Ivan Sabanov made good use of their wild card entry to oust third seeds Raven Klaasen and Ben McLachlan, 6-4, 6-2. They’ll play Divij Sharan and Aljaz Bedene for a place in the semi-finals.

Second Seeds Fall in Barcelona
Horia Tecau and Kevin Krawietz upset second seeds Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos, 7-6(4), 7-6(3) at the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadel. Despite being unseeded, Krawietz and Tecau are both experienced multiple Grand Slam doubles champions, and teamed up in 2021 for the first time (they began their partnership by reaching the Rotterdam final).

On the heels of a run to the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters final, Daniel Evans and Neal Skupski saved a match point in the deciding Match Tie-Break during a 6-4, 5-7, 13-11 win over Henri Kontinen and Edouard Roger-Vasselin.

Third-seeded Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury made quick work of Cristian Garin and Guido Pella, 6-0, 6-3.

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How Davidovich Fokina Found ‘Mental Calm’ In Berrettini Upset

Alejandro Davidovich Fokina scored the biggest victory of his career on Tuesday at the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters as he closed out eighth seed Matteo Berrettini 7-5, 6-3 to reach the third round.

Not only was it the 21-year-old Spaniard’s first victory at an ATP Masters 1000 clay-court event, it was Davidovich Fokina’s first win against a Top 10 player.

It was a long-awaited milestone for Davidovich Fokina, who went 0-4 last year in clashes with Diego Schwartzman and Alexander Zverev. The signs were already there, as Davidovich Fokina pushed both players to deciding sets in two of their contests.

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“I’m very happy with this win. I’m very excited to defeat a Top 10 player,” Davidovich Fokina said in his post-match press conference. “Last year I faced a couple of Top 10 players and I came close, but I couldn’t close them out. But here I am improving every day, I’m playing better and better.

“I also knew that Matteo was coming back from an injury and he wouldn’t have a lot of rhythm. I was able to take advantage of that today.” 

Davidovich Fokina put in a measured and consistent performance to defeat the World No. 10. He claimed 73 per cent of points behind his strong first serve, and broke the Italian three times. Berrettini showed flashes of his best tennis, working his way back after a rib injury forced him to withdraw from the fourth round of the Australian Open

The Spaniard knew he had a big opportunity to pull off the upset with Berrettini contesting his first match since Melbourne. He was prepared to take his chances, something Davidovich Fokina admitted he has been working on. 

The No. 58-ranked player revealed that a change in mentality has helped him find the winning momentum that’s propelled him up the FedEx ATP Rankings. He has posted an 11-6 record after the Tour resumed in August 2020, including his first ATP Tour semi-final at Cologne (l. Zverev). 

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“Before, I used to be a much more hyperactive and anxious person,” he admitted. “I wanted to finish every point in three shots, but when you evolve as a player you realise that tennis is not about winning in three shots. It’s about staying mentally calm and feeling stable. 

“You have to take advantage of your opportunities, but also acknowledge that there may be more opportunities to come if you can’t.” 

Davidovich Fokina will hope to continue capitalising on his chances as he awaits the winner of Lucas Pouille and Alexei Popyrin for a shot at his first ATP Masters 1000 quarter-final.

Goffin-De Minaur y Bublik-Chardy, semifinalistas en Turquía

El belga David Goffin, segundo favorito, se enfrentará al australiano Alex De Minaur (4) en semifinales del torneo de Antalya (Turquía), mientras que el francés Jeremy Chardy se medirá con el kazajo Alexander Bublik en la otra antesala de la final.

Goffin venció al italiano Stefano Travagllia por 6-3 y 6-2 y De Minaur hizo lo propio con el georgiano Nikoloz Basilashvili por 6-2 y 6-4.

Chardy venció al alemán Jan-Lennard Struff por 4-6, 6-2 y 7-6(8), mientras que Bublik ganó al primer favorito del torneo, el italiano Matteo Berrettini, por 7-6(6) y 6-4.

Resultados del torneo de Antalya.

Berrettini Moves Into Antalya Quarter-finals

Matteo Berrettini booked his place in the Antalya Open quarter-finals on Sunday with a 6-2, 6-3 victory against Dimitar Kuzmanov.

The top seed dropped just two points behind his first serve (26/28) and broke serve on five occasions to reach the last eight in 68 minutes. Berrettini is yet to drop a set in Antalya this week.

The World No. 10 is chasing his first ATP Tour trophy on hard courts. Berrettini’s three previous tour-level title runs came at clay (2) and grass (1) events.

The 24-year-old, who qualified for the 2019 Nitto ATP Finals, will meet Alexander Bublik for a semi-final spot at the ATP 250. Bublik saved seven of eight break points to overcome Tristan Lamasine of France 6-2, 6-4.

Jeremy Chardy needed two hours and 53 minutes to book his place in the quarter-finals. The 33-year-old held his nerve in three tie-break sets to eliminate third seed Fabio Fognini 7-6(4), 6-7(1), 7-6(5).

Chardy, who served for the match at 5-4 in the second set, was forced to break serve at 5-6 in the decider to reach a final-set tie-break. The Frenchman converted his first match point to earn his second win in six ATP Head2Head meetings against Fognini and book a quarter-final clash against Jan-Lennard Struff.

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Berrettini Blasts Into Antalya Second Round

World No. 10 Matteo Berrettini blasted his way into the Antalya Open second round on Friday by beating Turkish wild card Ergi Kirkin 6-0, 6-4 in just 56 minutes. The top-seeded Italian struck eight aces and won 24 of 26 first-service points. He now plays Serbia’s Laslo Djere or qualifier Dimitar Kuzmanov of Bulgaria.

Fifth seed Jan-Lennard Struff, competing at a career-high No. 29 in the FedEx ATP Rankings, saved five of seven break points in a 6-4, 6-3 victory over Russian qualifier Pavel Kotov in 87 minutes. The German now plays France’s Hugo Grenier, who recorded his first ATP Tour match win by beating qualifier Alex Molcan of the Slovak Republic 7-5, 6-4 in 90 minutes. Moclan led 3-1 in the first set.

Berrettini Leads Big-Bangers & Shotmakers In Antalya

Want to start the 2021 ATP Tour season with a title at the Antalya Open in Turkey? You’ll have to go through shotmakers galore to do it.

Matteo Berretini is the top seed at the ATP 250, where the Italian will try to claim his fourth tour-level title. The World No. 10 is one of the biggest bruisers on the ATP Tour, but he’ll have to navigate a tricky field if he is to start his year in the winners’ circle.

Berrettini will begin his run in Antalya against 21-year-old Turkish wild card Ergi Kirkin, who seeks his first tour-level win. The other seeded player in the 2019 Nitto ATP Finals competitor’s quarter is eighth seed Alexander Bublik. The Kazakh is armed with a deadly serve and a tough game to deal with, from out-of-the blue winners to underarm serves.

Shotmaking baseliners Fabio Fognini and Jan-Lennard Struff are also in Berrettini’s half of the draw. The third-seeded Fognini and fifth-seeded Struff will both begin their year against a qualifier or lucky loser.

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David Goffin, the second seed and 2017 Nitto ATP Finals runner-up, faces a tricky opener against good friend Pierre-Hugues Herbert, an aggressive Frenchman. Not only are they close friends off court, but they are doubles partners in Turkey. Herbert is a dangerous opponent, who for years has been one of the best doubles players in the world. Goffin has won all five of their previous ATP Head2Head meetings, and he will try to maintain that clean sheet in Turkey.

The next-highest seed in the Belgian’s half of the draw is Aussie No. 1 Alex de Minaur, the three-time ATP Tour titlist. The fourth seed will begin his season against Tunisian Malek Jaziri. Big-hitting Georgian Nikoloz Basilashvili, the sixth seed, is also in the same half of the draw, as are Miomir Kecmanovic and Emil Ruusuvuori.

Mektic/Pavic Top Seeds In Doubles Draw
Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic will begin their new partnership in Antalya, where they are the top seeds. The Croatians will begin 2021 against Jiri Vesely and Tristan-Samuel Weissborn. Weissborn will be a member of Austria’s ATP Cup team in February.

The second seeds are 2019 Nitto ATP Finals competitors Ivan Dodig and Filip Polasek. The 2019 Cincinnati champions will play Tuna Altuna and Altug Celikbilek of Turkey in the first round.

View Who Is Playing, Seeds, Points & Prize Money Breakdown

Here’s what you need to know about the Antalya tennis tournament, which was included in the ATP’s updated start to the 2021 calendar on a single-year license. 

Established: 2021

Tournament Dates: Thursday, 7 – Wednesday, 13 January 2021

Tournament Director: Ümit Yaşar Yılmaz

Draw Ceremony: Tuesday, 5 January 2021, 4pm

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Schedule
* Qualifying: Tuesday 5 – Wednesday 6 January
* Main draw: Thursday, 7 January – Wednesday, 13 January at 10am (no night session)
* Doubles final: Tuesday 12 January
* Singles final: Wednesday 13 January

Venue: Limak Arcadia Sport Resort
Surface: Outdoor Hard

Prize Money: € 300,000 (Total Financial Commitment: € 361,800)

Social
Instagram: @AntalyaOpen