Tsitsipas earns first win over Medvedev at ATP Finals

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LONDON — For Stefanos Tsitsipas, finally getting his first win over Daniil Medvedev meant a lot.

Not only because Tsitsipas was 0-5 against the Russian before winning 7-6 (5), 6-4 Monday at the O2 Arena, or even that it came in his ATP Finals debut.

But mainly because two of the biggest rising stars in tennis simply don’t like each other that much.

“It’s a victory that I craved for a long time now, and it’s great that it came at this moment,” Tsitsipas said. “Our chemistry definitely isn’t the best that you can find on the tour. . It’s not that I hate him (but) we will not go to dinner together.”

The grudge dates to their first meeting, in Miami last year, when Medvedev berated Tsitsipas for not apologizing after hitting a net cord during a point, a spat that ended with both players trading insults on court.

“After that, I think I didn’t win a single game. He did get into my head, and I was very frustrated that it did go this way,” Tsitsipas said. “He started telling me that I should apologize, that what I do is unsportsmanlike. . Somehow it did affect me. I did get (angry) and said what I said, which I do regret, but at the time I was very frustrated.”

Since that match, Medvedev had earned another four straight wins over Tsitsipas, including in the Shanghai semifinals in October.

But on Monday, the sixth-seeded Greek earned the only break of the match to take a 5-4 lead in the second set and clinched the win with a forehand overhead at the net.

“He was better today, but I felt like I was missing some things,” Medvedev said. “This frustrates me after. I do think it would frustrate me against any other opponent. I hate to lose against anybody. Of course I wanted to make it even more bigger head-to-head, but it’s the way it is.”

Both players are making their debut at the year-end tournament for the world’s top eight players, which features a round robin before the semifinals. Medvedev established himself as one of the best hard-court players on tour this season, reaching the U.S. Open final and winning four titles on the surface.

But Tsitispas – the first Greek player to qualify for the ATP Finals – used an aggressive forehand to keep the Russian from dictating the match, coming to the net 26 times and winning 22 of those points.

In the first-set tiebreaker, Tsitsipas hit a forehand volley winner to go ahead 6-5 and clinched the set when Medvedev netted a forehand.

In the late match, top-ranked Rafael Nadal was to play defending champion Alexander Zverev. Nadal, who has a 5-0 record against Zverev, is looking for his first title at the event.

In the other group, Novak Djokovic beat Matteo Berrettini on Sunday while Roger Federer lost to Dominic Thiem.

Elena Rybakina hits 10 aces in Miami for 12th straight win

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
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MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — Reigning Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina extended her winning streak to 12 matches by delivering 10 aces – her fourth consecutive outing with at least that many – in a 6-3, 6-0 victory over 25th-seeded Martina Trevisan in the Miami Open quarterfinals.

Rybakina has 46 aces through four matches at the hard-court tournament in Florida and a WTA-leading 201 this season.

The 23-year-old, who represents Kazakhstan, improved to 20-4 in 2023, including a run to the Australian Open final in January and a title at Indian Wells, California, last week.

She is trying to become only the fifth player to win the women’s trophies at Indian Wells and Miami in the same season. Top-ranked Iga Swiatek did it a year ago; she withdrew from Miami this time because of a rib injury.

“Of course it would be amazing to achieve something like that,” the 10th-seeded Rybakina said about the prospect of completing what’s known as the Sunshine Double, “but it’s still far away.”

So far in Rybakina’s career, 13 of her 18 semifinal appearances have come on hard courts. She will face No. 3 Jessica Pegula for a berth in the final after the American fought off two match points and outlasted No. 27 Anastasia Potapova 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (2) in a match that ended just before 1:30 a.m. after play had been delayed by rain.

“I haven’t been that physically tired in just a really long time,” Pegula said. “Just the humidity was taking so much out of me, and I haven’t been able to play in humidity like that in a while. It was just really tough, so really, it was just pure will.”

Trevisan reached the French Open semifinals in 2022.

In fourth-round men’s action Tuesday, No. 2 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas was beaten 7-6 (4), 6-4 by No. 14 Karen Khachanov, while defending champion Carlos Alcaraz, Taylor Fritz and Jannik Sinner all beat seeded opponents in straight sets.

Alcaraz, who returned to No. 1 in the ATP rankings last week, got past Australian Open semifinalist Tommy Paul 6-4, 6-4 to set up a meeting against Fritz, the top-ranked American man and seeded ninth in Miami.

Fritz compiled twice as many winners, 22, as unforced errors, 11, and only dropped serve once during a 6-3, 6-4 victory over No. 7 Holger Rune. That put Fritz into his first quarterfinal in seven appearances in Miami – and his first matchup against Alcaraz, a 19-year-old from Spain who won the U.S. Open in September for his first Grand Slam title.

“I’m really excited for it,” Fritz said. “I think that a lot of people are really excited for that, too.”

No. 10 Sinner eliminated No. 6 Andrey Rublev 6-2, 6-4 and has yet to drop a set in the tournament.

Sinner’s next opponent will be unseeded Emil Ruusuvuori, a 4-6, 6-4, 7-5 winner against No. 26 Botic van de Zandschulp.

No. 4 Daniil Medvedev, forced to start late and off his scheduled court after the rain, beat Quentin Halys 6-4, 6-2. He will face American Christopher Eubanks, who edged Adrian Mannarino in a pair of tiebreakers.

Khachanov will play Francisco Cerundolo, a semifinalist in Miami last year, in the other men’s quarterfinal.

Fritz, Sinner reach Miami Open quarterfinals with 2-set wins

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MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. — Taylor Fritz and Jannik Sinner beat seeded opponents in straight sets at the Miami Open to move into the quarterfinals.

No. 9 Fritz compiled twice as many winners, 22, as unforced errors, 11, and only dropped serve once during a 6-3, 6-4 victory over No. 7 Holger Rune.

That put Fritz, the highest-ranked American man, into his first quarterfinal in seven appearances at the hard-court tournament.

He will face either No. 1 Carlos Alcaraz or Australian Open semifinalist Tommy Paul next. Alcaraz is the defending champion in Miami.

No. 10 Sinner eliminated No. 6 Andrey Rublev 6-2, 6-4 and has yet to drop a set in the tournament.

Sinner’s next opponent will be No. 26 Botic van de Zandschulp or unseeded Emil Ruusuvuori.