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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Friday November 13, 2020


Stefanos Tsitsipas is not quite 100 percent ready for the #NittoATPFinals, but the World No.6 says he’s ready to do battle with Dominic Thiem on Sunday in London, and thrilled to be a part of the prestigious event for the second time.

Tennis Express

"Every year I get to experience being back here - it's thrilling,” the defending champion said in a virtual press conference on Friday from London. "It's like a meeting spot for those that had a good year, to be back here celebrating their hard work, their dedication to the sport and I'm very privileged to be part of it."

Tsitsipas says he’s proud to be a part of the ATP’s elite eight, and he’s grateful to have the chance to defend his title, even if fans can’t be in attendance for the 2020 edition, which will also mark the end of a 12-year run for the event at London’s O2 Arena.

"I know it's not easy to be in this position and that I've really worked hard for it and for sure there were plenty of nights that I couldn't sleep and I was worried and I was stressed and lots of sweat and lots of attribution to the sport," he said. "I'm grateful that I get to be among the eight players and am here to defend my title - the best-case scenario, which would be great."

The Greek has battled a leg injury since Rome, and after struggling with it during his semifinal with Novak Djokovic in Paris, he pulled out of St. Petersburg. He said the injury still bothered him in Paris, where he talked about it after his loss to Ugo Humbert in his first match.

After spending time rehabbing in Paris, the Greek says he is much closer to 100 percent.

"I was in Paris, I stayed for a week to have treatments and the right rehabilitation for my injury,” he said. “I'm very close to 100 percent. I'm happy that I'm able to move more freely and less conscious of my pain, so it's positive feedback and a positive thing to have."

Tsitsipas says the injury has been a mental drain as well as a physical one.

"This injury kind of like mentally drained me and hasn't made me feel at 100 percent. I was struggling with it for a long time now, since Rome, I was playing with that injury and I was not quite sure if it's the right thing to do to keep playing but, I proved that the mind can do anything if you set a goal and you want to pursue it.

"Right now I am feeling way, way better than I did in Vienna. I hope my leg stays the same, and I also hope that I don't have to go through the same things that I have had to go through a few weeks ago."

 

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