Tsitsipas Wins Maiden Masters 1000 Crown In Monte-Carlo

Third time proved to be the charm for Stefanos Tsitsipas at the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters on Sunday when he collected his first ATP Masters 1000 title with a 6-3, 6-3 victory against Andrey Rublev.

Appearing in his third final at the level, Tsitsipas dropped just four points behind his first serve (24/28) to capture the second biggest title of his career after 71 minutes. As a result of his final win, the 2019 Nitto ATP Finals champion will climb to first position in the FedEx ATP Race To Turin on Monday. The six-time ATP Tour titlist did not drop a set throughout his week at the Monte-Carlo Country Club.

“I had an unbelievable week in Monte-Carlo,” Tsitsipas said in his post-match interview. “I can’t describe my feelings right now. I am overwhelmed by so many different emotions and nostalgia. It is incredible that I am able to be in the position that I am. We both deserved to be in the final. We put on an amazing fight and an amazing show… I would consider it as the [best] week of my life so far.”

– Graphic courtesy Hawk-Eye Innovations/ATP Media

Tsitsipas claimed early breaks in each set and dominated on serve to narrow the gap on Rublev at the top of the 2021 wins leaderboard. The Monte-Carlo finalists currently occupy the top two positions on the list and are the only players to have claimed 20 or more victories this season.

2021 Match Wins Leaderboard

– Graphic courtesy Hawk-Eye Innovations/ATP Media
– Take a deep dive into this match with Match Insights powered by Infosys NIA

Tsitsipas has taken a 4-3 lead in his fiercely contested ATP Head2Head rivalry with Rublev. The 23-year-old gained revenge for his semi-final loss to the Russian at last month’s ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament in Rotterdam. Tsitsipas has won his past two clay-court encounters against Rublev, following his straight-sets quarter-final win at Roland Garros last year.

“I knew that he was going to be a very difficult opponent to face. There were a lot of nerves coming into that match. [We] always want to bring the best out of [ourselves] when facing each other. Playing Andrey was a very difficult thing to do today, also considering that it was a final. There is extra stress and extra importance in the match that we had to play. [I am] definitely proud of the way I managed to behave and be out on the court today.

“The clay court season couldn’t have started better,” Tsitsipas said. “It is the best thing winning my first Masters 1000 and it is even more special doing it here on home soil in Monte-Carlo and doing it on clay, which is my favourite surface.”

Tsitsipas made a fast start on Court Rainier III. The Athens native pinned Rublev into his backhand corner to earn his first break point of the match at 1-0 and switched tactics with a backhand up the line to claim the only break of the set. Tsitsipas dropped just two points across his next four service games (16/18) to move one set from victory.

Tsitsipas showcased a mix of power and precision on his backhand and found consistent depth on his forehand return to break for the second time at 1-1 in the second set. The World No. 5 continued his fine serving performance to reach match point, when he broke Rublev for the third time. Tsitsipas sunk to his knees in celebration after Rublev fired a cross-court backhand into the tramline.

Rublev was also chasing his first Masters 1000 trophy and the top spot in the FedEx ATP Race To Turin. The World No. 8 defeated Top 10 seeds Roberto Bautista Agut and 11-time champion Rafael Nadal in back-to-back three-set matches en route to his first Masters 1000 final.

Did You Know?
Tsitsipas is not the first member of his family to triumph at the Monte-Carlo Country Club. His mother, Julia Salnikova, won a junior title at the venue in 1981.

Mektic/Pavic Clinch Monte-Carlo Crown; Fifth Doubles Title Of Year

Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic captured their fifth ATP Tour team title from six finals on Sunday at the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters. The second-seeded Croatians won a repeat of the Miami Open presented by Itau final, beating Britons Daniel Evans and Neal Skupski 6-3, 4-6, 10-7 in one hour and 36 minutes.

Mektic and Pavic improved to a 29-3 match record on the season, which includes trophies at the Antalya Open (d. Dodig/Polasek), Murray River Open in Melbourne (d. Chardy/Martin), ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament in Rotterdam (d. Krawietz/Tecau) and Miami.

“It’s incredible, we’re so, so happy, especially because the final was so intense,” said Mektic, who also lifted the 2019 Monte-Carlo crown with Franko Skugor. “It was 10/7 for us, but it could have gone either way. It’s a wonderful place. It was special to win here with another fellow Croatian [in 2019] the first time around, and this is equally as special.”

Pavic said, “[Daniel and Neal] are very tough. They won a lot of matches. Neal won Acapulco before Miami too. I would like to see them playing more together, because they are a good team, but it’s up to Dan and his singles.

“We have played more than 30 matches and we’ve been playing great. We’re on a run. It was our first clay tournament together and the matches we’ve played before this week gave us confidence. It was good to get the Match Tie-break win yesterday [against Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos] too.”

Pavic, Mektic

Mektic and Pavic got off to the best possible start by winning the first three games. But the British pair clawed their way back, with Evans hitting a smash winner to break Pavic’s serve at 2-3. Pavic took his chance on return of serve in the eighth game, striking a backhand winner past Evans and closed out the 31-minute opener to love in the next game.

After an early exchange of breaks early in the second set, Evans did well to recover from 15/40 for a 3-2 advantage. The Britons went on to seal the second set when Pavic struck a backhand slice approach shot long.

The Match Tie-break appeared to turn in favour of Evans and Skupski, when Pavic struck back-to-back double faults from 5-4. But at 5/6, Mektic hit a backhand return winner down the line. Mektic later hit a reaction volley off a powerful Evans forehand that looped over Skupski’s head on championship point. Mektic and Pavic clinched the Miami title earlier this month with a 6-4, 6-4 win over Evans and Skupski.

“Well done again, another great week,” said Evans. “We can’t get you yet, but we’ll keep trying.” Skupski said: “Congratulations again, it seems to be going well for you this year.”

This week, Evans beat World No. 1 Novak Djokovic in the singles third round and went on to reach the semi-finals at the Monte-Carlo Country Club. Skupski won the Abierto Mexicano Telcel presentado por HSBC with his older brother, Ken Skupski, last month.

Nadal Ready For More Brilliance In Barcelona; All You Need To Know

Rafael Nadal leads the field at the Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell as he seeks to add another victory at the ATP 500 event to his legendary clay-court haul. The top-seeded Spaniard has already lifted the Trofeo de Godo 11 times, more than anyone else in tournament history.

The City of Counts has been adding up the home-grown victories in recent years: Fourteen of the past 17 editions have been won by Spaniards, led by Nadal (2005-09, 2011-13, 2016-18),  Fernando Verdasco (2010), Tommy Robredo (2004) and Carlos Moya (2003). Japan’s Kei Nishikori won back-to-back titles in 2014-15, and he’ll be back in action looking to once again break up the Spanish supremacy in Barcelona.

They will be joined by Top 10 stars Diego Schwartzman and Stefanos Tsitsipas, who reached the final here in 2018. #NextGenATP players including Jannik Sinner, Felix Auger-Aliassime and Denis Shapovalov are also eager to make their mark.

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Ferrer To Become Barcelona Tournament Director

Retired Spanish great David Ferrer has taken the reigns as tournament director of the historic ATP 500 event, which has been held at the Real Club de Tenis Barcelona 1899, the oldest tennis club in Spain, since 1953.

Here’s all you need to know about Barcelona tennis tournament: when is the draw, what is the schedule, where to watch, who won and more. 


Tournament Dates: 19-25 April 2021

Tournament Director: David Ferrer

Draw Ceremony: Saturday, 17 April at 12 noon, on-site

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Schedule (View On Official Website)
* Qualifying: Saturday 17 – Sunday 18 April at 10:00am
* Main draw: Monday 19 April – Thursday 22 at 11:00am, Friday 23 at 12:30pm and Saturday 24 at 1:30pm
* Doubles final: Sunday, 25 April at 1:00pm
* Singles final: Sunday, 25 April at 4:00pm

How To Watch
Watch Live On Tennis TV  

How To Watch

Venue: Real Club de Tenis Barcelona 1899
Main Court Seating: 8,000

Prize Money: €1,565,480 (Total Financial Commitment: € 1,702,800) 

Tickets On SaleBuy Now
Note: Due to COVID-19 health guidelines, the 2021 Barcelona Open Banc Sabadell is welcoming guests at a reduced capacity.

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

Honour Roll (Open Era)
Most Titles, Singles: Rafael Nadal (11)
Most Titles, Doubles: Daniel Nestor (4)
Oldest Champion: Manuel Santana, 32, in 1970
Youngest Champion: Mats Wilander, 18, in 1982
Highest-Ranked Champion (since 1979): No. 1Ilie Nastase in 1973, No. 1 Rafael Nadal in 2009, 2011, 2018
Lowest-Ranked Champion (since 1979): No. 65 Todd Martin in 1998
Most Match Wins: Rafael Nadal (61) 
Last Home Champion: Rafael Nadal (2018)

2019 Finals
Singles: [3] Dominic Thiem (AUT) d [7] Daniil Medvedev (RUS) 64 60   Read & Watch
Doubles: [3] Juan Sebastian Cabal (COL) / Robert Farah (COL) d Jamie Murray (GBR) / Bruno Soares (BRA) 64 76(4)  Read More 

Hashtag: #bcnopenbs

Facebook: @barcelonaopenbancsabadell
Twitter: @bcnopenbs
Instagram: @bcnopenbs

Did You Know… It’s a tradition for the singles and doubles champions to take a dive in the pool at the Real Club de Tenis Barcelona-1899.

Djokovic Set For Homecoming In Belgrade; All You Need To Know

A lot has changed since the last time Novak Djokovic had a chance to play on home soil in Serbia.

The ATP Tour is set to return to Belgrade for the first time since 2012 at the Serbia Open, an ATP 250 clay-court event. Djokovic lifted two trophies during the event’s previous four-year run, triumphing in 2009 and 2011. Back then, the home favourite had yet to rise to No. 1 in the FedEx ATP Rankings and had only recently added a second Grand Slam title to his name.

Now an 18-time Grand Slam champion, Djokovic will return to Belgrade as the all-time record-holder of most weeks at World No.1, entering his 317th week at the top of the game. The top seed will hit the court at his eponymous tennis centre looking to claim his 83th tour-level title.

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Djokovic will be joined by two more Top 10 players with reigning US Open champion Dominic Thiem and Italian star Matteo Berrettini set to make their Belgrade debuts. Aslan Karatsev, the breakthrough star of the 2021 season, will also feature.

Note: The 2021 Serbia Open will be held behind closed doors due to COVID-19 precautions.

Established: 2009

Tournament Dates: 19 April – 25 April 2021

Tournament Director: Djordje Djokovic

Draw Ceremony: TBA

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* Qualifying: 18-19 April at 11am
* Main draw: Monday 19 – Sunday 25 April 
* Start times: Monday-Friday 11:00am and 7:00pm; Saturday 4:00pm, Sunday 5:00pm
* Doubles final: TBA
* Singles final: Sunday 25 April, TBA

How To Watch
Watch Live On Tennis TV
TV Schedule

Venue: Novak Tennis Centre
Surface: Clay 

Prize Money: €650,000 (Total Financial Commitment: €711,800)

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

Honour Roll
Most Titles, Singles: Novak Djokovic (2)
Oldest Champion: Andreas Seppi, 28, in 2012
Youngest Champion: Novak Djokovic, 21, in 2009
Highest-Ranked Champion: No. 2 Novak Djokovic in 2011
Lowest-Ranked Champion: No. 46 Andreas Seppi in 2012
Most Match Wins: Novak Djokovic, Andreas Seppi (9)

Did You Know?
The world-class Novak Tennis Centre complex boasts 14 tennis courts, including 11 clay courts. It also features a ‘trophy room’ that holds on display dozens of trophies and mementos from the World No. 1’s legendary career.

Take The Nadal Monte-Carlo Challenge

It’s common knowledge that Rafael Nadal is the Master of Monte-Carlo. The Spaniard, who made his tournament debut as a 16-year-old in 2003, has won a record 11 titles in the Principality. 

But do you recall who Nadal has beaten in those championship matches at the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters? Eight different players are among the Spaniard’s victims, including one he denied in three straight finals from 2006-08.

See how many of those beaten finalists you remember. Take the Rafael Nadal Monte-Carlo Challenge and share your results!

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Nadal, Djokovic Headline At Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters: What You Need To Know

The Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters is the first of three ATP Masters 1000 tournaments played on clay. Held at the picturesque Monte-Carlo Country Club, the event has a long tradition of great champions, led by Spain’s Rafael Nadal, who has won 11 titles at the event, including an Open Era record eight straight between 2005-2012.

Nadal will open his 2021 clay-court campaign in Monte-Carlo, and is joined in the field by past champions Novak Djokovic (2013 & 2015) and Fabio Fognini (2019), and the likes of Daniil Medvedev, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Alexander Zverev and Andrey Rublev.

Here’s all you need to know about Monte-Carlo tennis tournament: when is the draw, what is the schedule, where to watch, who won and more. 

Established: 1897

Tournament Dates: 11-18 April 2021

Tournament Director: Zeljko Franulovic

Draw Ceremony: Friday, 9 April, 6:30pm at Monte Carlo Bay

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Schedule (View On Official Website)
* Qualifying: 10-11 April from 11am
* Main draw: Sunday, 11 April – Saturday, 17 April from 11am, Sunday, 18 April at 12 noon
* Doubles final: Sunday, 18 April at 12 noon
* Singles final: Sunday, 18 April at 2:30pm 

How To Watch
Watch Live On Tennis TV 
View TV Schedule

Venue: Monte-Carlo Country Club
Surface: Clay

Prize Money: € 2,082,960 (Total Financial Commitment: € 2,460,585)  

Tickets On SaleBuy Now

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

Honour Roll (Open Era)
Most Titles, Singles: Rafael Nadal (11)
Most Titles, Doubles:
Bob Bryan & Mike Bryan (6)
Oldest Champion: Nicola Pietrangeli, 34, in 1968
Youngest Champion: Mats Wilander, 18, in 1983
Highest-Ranked Champion (since 1979): No. 1 Bjorn Borg in 1979-80, Ivan Lendl in 1988, Rafael Nadal in 2009, ’11 & ‘18, Novak Djokovic in 2013 & ‘15
Lowest-Ranked Champion (since 1979)
: No. 49 Andrew Pattison in 1974
Most Match Wins: Rafael Nadal (71)

2019 Finals
Singles: [13] Fabio Fognini (ITA) d Dusan Lajovic (SRB) 63 64   Read & Watch
Doubles: [7] Nikola Mektic (CRO) / Franko Skugor (CRO) d Robin Haase (NED) / Wesley Koolhof (NED) 67(3) 76(3) 11-9  Read & Watch 

Hashtag: #rolexmcmasters
Facebook: @rolexmcmasters
Instagram: @rolexmontecarlomasters

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Relive A Much-Loved Tradition: The ATP Player Revue In Monte-Carlo

Did You Know…  The annual Player Revue takes place during the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters. Stars of the ATP Tour set aside their inhibitions to entertain their friends, family and fellow players in a series of sketches, poking good-humoured fun at life on tour and showing off their singing and dancing talents. Unfortunately, in 2021, due to COVID-19, the Player Revue will not take place. Take a look back at past Player Revues: 2018 | 2017 | 2016

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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* 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)

Instagram: @AntalyaOpen

Will Big Serves Lead To Maiden Delray Beach Title For Isner?

John Isner will likely be blasting aces in Florida over the coming week, and the American No. 1 hopes that will help him lift his first Delray Beach Open by VITACOST.com trophy.

The second seed will try to get off to a good start to the 2021 season when he plays one of two Brazilian lefties: Thomaz Bellucci or Thiago Monteiro. Isner owns a 2-2 ATP Head2Head record against Bellucci and he won his only previous clash against Monteiro in four tie-break sets at last year’s Australian Open.

The big-serving righty also has dangerous countrymen on the rise in his section of the draw. Fifth seed Tommy Paul is the other seeded player in Isner’s quarter. If Paul defeats Ji Sung Nam in the first round, he could play fellow American Sebastian Korda in the second round.

View Delray Beach Draws: Singles | Doubles

Korda will make his Delray Beach debut against consistent baseliner Soonwoo Kwon. The #NextGenATP American made a big splash at Roland Garros last year. After qualifying, Korda defeated Andreas Seppi, Isner and Pedro Martinez to reach the fourth round, in which he fell to Rafael Nadal, his idol.

The top seed at this ATP 250 is Chilean Cristian Garin, who will try to win his first ATP Tour title on hard courts.

The No. 22 player in the FedEx ATP Rankings, Garin will begin his season against Argentine Tomas Martin Etcheverry or a qualifier. The first seed the Chilean could face is sixth seed Sam Querrey.

Frances Tiafoe, the eighth seed and 2018 champion, will start his tournament against a qualifier.

Arevalo/Rojer Top Doubles Draw
The top seeds in the Delray Beach doubles draw are Marcelo Arevalo and Jean-Julien Rojer, who will open against Ariel Behar and Gonzalo Escobar. Second seeds Marcus Daniell and Philipp Oswald will play Andres Molteni and Hugo Nys.

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

Here’s all you need to know about the Delray tennis tournament: what is the schedule, where to watch, who has won and more.

Established: 1993

Tournament Dates: 7-13 January 2021

Tournament Director: Mark Baron

Draw Ceremony: Monday, 4 January 2021, 3pm

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Schedule (View On Official Website)
* Qualifying: Tuesday at 10am; Wednesday at 11am
* Main draw: Thursday, 7 January – Wednesday, 17 January at 11am and 6pm
* Doubles final: Wednesday, 17 January 12:30pm
* Singles final: Wednesday, 17 January not before 3pm

How To Watch
Watch Live On Tennis TV

Venue: Delray Beach Stadium & Tennis Center
Surface: Outdoor Hard

Prize Money: $ 349,530 (Total Financial Commitment: $ 418,195)

Honour Roll
Most Titles, Singles:
Jan-Michael Gambill, Ernests Gulbis, Xavier Malisse, Jason Stoltenberg (2)
Most Titles, Doubles: Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan (6)
Oldest Champion: Ivo Karlovic, 35, in 2015
Youngest Champion: Kei Nishikori, 18, in 2008
Highest-Ranked Champion: No. 20 Mardy Fish in 2009
Lowest-Ranked Champion: No. 244 Kei Nishikori in 2008
Most Match Wins: Xavier Malisse (26)
Last Home Champion: Reilly Opelka in 2020

2020 Finals
Singles: [4] Reilly Opelka (USA) d. Yoshihito Nishioka (JPN) 7-5, 6-7(4), 6-2 Read & Watch
Doubles: [1] Bob Bryan/Mike Bryan d. Luke Bambridge/Ben McLachlan 3-6, 7-5, 10-5 Read More

Facebook: @DelrayBeachOpen 
Twitter: @DelrayBeachOpen
Instagram: @DelrayBeachOpen