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Tsitsipas on Italian Stars Berrettini and Sinner

By Richard Pagliaro | Monday, January 24, 2022

Offseason elbow surgery hasn't hampered Stefanos Tsitsipas' skill hammering out solutions on court.

The fourth-ranked Tsitsipas torched 19 aces and saved 12 of 15 break points subduing 20th-seeded Taylor Fritz 4-6, 6-4, 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 to advance to his third Australian Open quarterfinal.

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Tsitsipas will play for his third AO semifinal in the last four years when he faces ultra-talented Italian Jannik Sinner in the quarterfinals.

Earlier, Sinner smacked 35 winners overpowering Aussie Alex de Minaur 7-6(3), 6-3, 6-4 to reach his first AO quarterfinal.

The 20-year-old Sinner showed the results of his improved transition game winning 26 of 32 trips to net.

Sinner joined Wimbledon finalist Matteo Berrettini as the second Italian man through to the elite eight.

Asked to compare the 11th-seeded Sinner's style to Berrettini, Tsitsipas said Berrettini is the bigger server and Sinner is the more dangerous baseliner.

"Sinner is someone that has been on the tour for less than two years. Matteo slightly longer," Tsitsipas said. "I have played him a few more times than I did with Jannik.

"I would consider Matteo more of a heavy server than Jannik, meaning that he does generate more power and more precision with his serve and gets more free points from his serve than Jannik."

The 23-year-old Tsitsipas has won two of three meetings vs. the 20-year-old Sinner with all three matches coming on clay courts. Tsitsipas is 2-0 lifetime vs. Berrettini, including a four-set win at the 2019 Australian Open.

In terms of temperament, Tsitsipas sees Berrettini as the fire to Sinner's ice on court.

"Jannik, I would consider more talented player from the baseline that looks like he's very relaxed when he's playing," Tsitsipas said. "Doesn't show much tension when he's out there. Pretty cold-blooded in comparison with Matteo, who looks a little bit more emotional.

"I cannot answer [whose style suits mine better]. They are just different players and I'm waiting to play them a bit more to answer that question. Just give me more time."

Photo credit: Getty