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Stefanos Tsitsipas claims he's "fighting to the maximum" to win Barcelona, says he's "inspired by the daily work that the Big 3 do"

Stefanos Tsitsipas, after clinching his place in the final of the 2021 Barcelona Open
Stefanos Tsitsipas, after clinching his place in the final of the 2021 Barcelona Open
ANALYST
Modified 24 Apr 2021
News

Stefanos Tsitsipas continued his rich vein of form at the Barcelona Open by defeating Jannik Sinner in the semifinals on Saturday. Tsitsipas won 6-3, 6-3 to make his second straight final on the ATP tour, and has been unbeaten on clay so far this year.

The newly-crowned Monte Carlo champion is on a nine-match winning streak on clay and will face Rafael Nadal in Sunday’s final.

In his post-match press conference on Saturday, Stefanos Tsitsipas stressed that he is leaving no stone unturned in his pursuit of a maiden title at Barcelona. The Greek claimed it is important for him to get through these last two weeks undefeated so that he can leave the event "fully satisfied".

"I am fighting to the maximum to get out of here with the title, it would be very important for me to chain two weeks undefeated," Tsitsipas said. "In a final many mental aspects come into play and to have the opportunity to leave a tournament fully satisfied and with absolutely nothing to reproach you. It's great."

Stefanos Tsitsipas then revealed he would be keenly following the proceedings of the semifinal between Rafael Nadal and Pablo Carreno Busta. He then mentioned that beating Nadal has always been high on his list of goals.

Stefanos Tsitsipas will next face Rafael Nadal.
Stefanos Tsitsipas will next face Rafael Nadal.

The 22-year-old recalled his 2018 Barcelona Open final against Nadal, claiming that the defeat in that match had helped him understand what he needed to do in order to win such events.

"I'll keep an eye on the other semifinal,"Stefanos Tsitsipas said. "I appreciate Rafael Nadal, winning over him has always been my dream. I remember the 2018 final perfectly because it was a huge boost for me, in the sense of understanding what everything I had to do to win tournaments like this."

Stefanos Tsitsipas has often been criticized for his inconsistency from one match to the next, but he seems to have turned things around in 2021. The Greek has reached at least the quarterfinal stage of every tournament he has played barring the ATP Cup.

In that context, Tsitsipas claimed that being consistent is one of his key goals right now, and that he draws inspiration from Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal in that regard.

"I have always paid attention to the best tennis players in the world to try to understand how they have managed to be at the highest level for so many years, week after week," Tsitsipas said. "Being consistent is my great goal right now and I am very inspired by the daily work that the Big 3 do, for example."

Jannik Sinner is a great player: Stefanos Tsitsipas

Jannik Sinner during his Barcelona Open clash against Stefanos Tsitsipas
Jannik Sinner during his Barcelona Open clash against Stefanos Tsitsipas

Stefanos Tsitsipas also showered rich praise on Jannik Sinner during his presser. Despite winning in straight sets, Tsitsipas insisted that the contest was closer than what the scoreline suggests.

The 22-year-old went on to thank his lucky stars that Sinner couldn’t convert any of the four break-point opportunities that he had created.

"It was a more even game than it may seem," Tsitsipas said. "Jannik is a great player, he has a very high ball rhythm and, definitely, he is a boy who has something different. He had several options to break my serve and luckily I was able to come out unscathed."
Published 24 Apr 2021
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