Alex de Minaur reached the semifinals of the Next Gen ATP Finals 2019 after he defeated Casper Rudd in the last Group A match. He won the match 4-1, 4-0, 4-2 to make it to his second consecutive semifinal at the event. He remained unbeaten in the group stages, taking his win record to 6-0 in the groups.
The top seed at the tournament will face second-seeded Frances Tiafoe in the first semifinal today. The American, also playing in his second Next Gen ATP Finals, had not made past the group stage last year. Tiafoe had defeated Mikael Ymer of Sweden 4-2, 4-2, 4-2 in the Group B match to make it to the semifinals.
Alex de Minaur vs Frances Tiafoe Preview
The current world number 18 and last year's runner up Alex de Minaur is playing the best tennis he can as he notched three wins in three group matches in Milan. He has dropped only two sets, one each against Miomir Kecmanović and Alejandro Davidovich Fokina and has won nine of them. He won the last match against Ruud in straight sets to secure a place in the semis.
Three titles this year and a final loss to Roger Federer at the Swiss Indoors has made Alex the clear favorite to win his maiden Next Gen ATP Finals title. The aggression he plays with has definitely been put to good use by the Aussie and he will also be brimming with confidence after three wins in the group.
Tiafoe has had an inconsistent 2019 season. Apart from the quarterfinal at the 2019 Australian Open, the world number 47 has seen early losses in other tournaments. However, he put the setback behind him and has strongly bounced back in Milan. He won two of his group matches, with the only loss coming against home favorite Jannik Sinner.
He has shown growth during the important moments in the match. A strong forehand and consistency of serving at 200kph is something de Minaur will have to be wary of.
Alex de Minaur vs Frances Tiafoe Head to Head
Tiafoe and de Minaur have faced each other only once before at the US Open in 2018. De Minaur had registered a four-set victory over his US counterpart. The Australian will look to better his record against Tiafoe with a win in Milan.
Prediction: Alex de Minaur to win in 4 sets
2019 Next Generation ATP Finals Schedule
Tournament name: 2019 Next Gen ATP Finals, Milan.
Category: Year-ending championship.
Match: Alex de Minaur vs Frances Tiafoe (23:30 IST, 8th November).
Broadcast: No live telecast in India.
Live score: Tennis TV.