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Australian Open 2021: Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Matteo Berrettini preview, head-to-head & prediction

Stefanos Tsitsipas
Stefanos Tsitsipas
Rudra Biswas
ANALYST
Modified 14 Feb 2021
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Match details

Fixture: Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Matteo Berrettini

Date: 15 February 2021

Tournament: Australian Open 2021

Round: Fourth round (Round of 16)

Venue: Melbourne, Australia

Category: Grand Slam

Surface: Outdoor hardcourt

Prize money: AUD $80,000,000

Live telecast: USA - ESPN / Tennis Channel | UK - Eurosport 1 | India - Sony Six

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Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Matteo Berrettini preview

Matteo Berrettini is through to the fourth round of the Australian Open
Matteo Berrettini is through to the fourth round of the Australian Open

World No. 6 Stefanos Tsitsipas takes on World No. 10 Matteo Berrettini for a place in the quarterfinals of the 2021 Australian Open on Monday.

After comprehensively beating former World No. 6 Gilles Simon in his opener, Tsitsipas had a huge scare in the next round against Thanasi Kokkinakis. The Greek had a match point to put Kokkinakis away in four sets, but squandered it before the local favorite forced a decider.

Tsitsipas eventually pulled things back with the help of his big serve and authoritative forehand, to reach the third round in Melbourne for the third consecutive time. The 22-year-old then took on his good friend Mikael Ymer in the third round and dropped only six games to advance with ease.

Tsitsipas has been playing some solid tennis in Melbourne this year, and will be looking to challenge Rafael Nadal in the quarterfinals. But first, he will need to deal with the big-hitting Matteo Berrettini.

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After a less-than-stellar 2020, Berrettini made a flying start to his 2021 season, beating the likes of Dominic Thiem, Gael Monfils and Roberto Bautista Agut at the ATP Cup. The Italian then kicked off his campaign at the Australian Open with a straight-sets win over Kevin Anderson, but dropped a set to Czech Republic's Tomas Machac in the second round.

On Saturday, Berrettini spent almost three hours on the court against Karen Khachanov. He hit 48 winners in three tiebreaks to advance to the second week of the Australian Open for the first time in his career.

Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Matteo Berrettini head-to-head

Stefanos Tsitsipas leads Matteo Berrettini 1-0 in their head-to-head record on the professional tour. The duo met here in Melbourne two years ago, when Tsitsipas beat Berrettini in four sets.

The Italian also faced the Greek in the final of the Ultimate Tennis Showdown 2, an exhibition tournament, where he beat Tsitsipas in sudden death to clinch the title.

Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Matteo Berrettini prediction

Stefanos Tsitsipas hits a backhand
Stefanos Tsitsipas hits a backhand

Stefanos Tsitsipas is never afraid to charge the net when his forehand prompts a weak reply from the opponent. And while he sometimes suffers with his backhand swing on the return, he has made several adjustments to the shot this week in Melbourne.

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The 22-year-old was in complete control of the third set against Ymer, winning about 70% of the points on his opponent's serve. That might be a cause of worry for Matteo Berrettini.

The 6 ft 5 in Italian has a huge serve, and will be looking to establish a 'serve + 1' pattern with his bullish forehand. Berrettini has good hands at the net too.

The Italian has struck 51 aces past his hapless opponents in Melbourne. If he can make Tsitsipas rush in his return games, he might be able to take the match to five sets on Monday.

All things considered, however, the Greek remains the favorite for this encounter.

Prediction: Stefanos Tsitsipas to win in five sets.

Published 14 Feb 2021, 00:15 IST
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