Fixture: Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Cristian Garin
Date: 26 September 2020
Tournament: Hamburg European Open 2020
Venue: Hamburg, Germany
Category: ATP 500
Surface: Red clay
Prize money: €1,062,520
Match timing: Not before 3.30 pm CEST, 7 pm IST
Live telecast: USA - ESPN / Tennis Channel | India - Sony Six
Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Cristian Garin preview
Second seed Stefanos Tsitsipas faces off against Cristian Garin for a place in the final of the Hamburg European Open on Saturday.
Tsitsipas came into the tournament low on both form and confidence, after an underwhelming American hardcourt season. The Greek player bowed out in the semifinals at the Cincinnati Masters before losing to Borna Coric in the third round of the US Open in highly disappointing fashion.
Things went from bad to worse for the 22-year-old as he crashed out in the first round of the Rome Masters against Jannik Sinner. However, Tsitsipas' form has seen a dramatic upswing in Hamburg.
The Greek has stormed through the draw so far, without dropping a single set. He has defeated Dan Evans, Pablo Cuevas and Dusan Lajovic with relative ease to set up a semifinal encounter against Cristian Garin.
Garin was himself in dire need of confidence after the lockdown, and the 24-year-old has found it this week in Hamburg.
Garin had a strong start to the 2020 season, breaking into the top 20 of the world rankings while winning two titles (in Cordoba and Rio) along the way. However, he struggled to replicate that kind of form on the American hardcourts.
Even on European clay, the Chilean crashed out in the first round in Rome - against Borna Coric. But in Hamburg, Garin fought off competition from Kei Nishikori and Yannick Hanfmann before edging a close quarterfinal encounter against Alexander Bublik 3-6 6-4 6-4.
Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Cristian Garin head-to-head
The semifinal in Hamburg is the first ever encounter between Stefanos Tsitsipas and Cristian Garin on the ATP tour, so the head-to-head currently stands at 0-0 between the two players.
Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Cristian Garin prediction
On paper, it may seem like Stefanos Tsitsipas is the overwhelming favorite for this match given his considerably higher ranking than Cristian Garin. The Chilean, however, is a formidable claycourt force; all of his four career titles have come on red dirt.
Garin is an able returner and boasts the ability to absorb pace and use it to his advantage. He also moves exceptionally well on clay, and can easily turn defense into offense.
Tsitsipas' all-court game, meanwhile, has been on full display in Hamburg so far; he has been striking the ball cleanly to put pressure on his opponents. Garin should expect his opponent to come out all guns blazing in the semifinal, playing the kind of attacking tennis that has worked so far in the cold conditions.
The match may ultimately boil down to Tsitsipas' serving form. If he serves the way he has been all week, he would have the edge in what is set to be a tight encounter.
Prediction: Stefanos Tsitsipas to win in three sets.Published 26 Sep 2020, 02:08 IST