Stefanos Tsitsipas claimed four ATP victories by the end of 2017. The upcoming youngster raised his level in 2018 and secured the first ATP crown in Stockholm and the ATP Next Gen Finals crown. Stefanos played well in August and reached the Washington semi-final ahead of a brilliant run at the Masters 1000 event in Toronto.
Tsitsipas advanced into the last eight in Canada following back-to-back top-10 triumphs over Dominic Thiem and Novak Djokovic, making a name for himself and facing another stern test in the quarters. The defending champion Alexander Zverev stood on the other side of the net, and Tsitsipas earned a 3-6, 7-6, 6-4 victory in two hours and 28 minutes!
Alexander was too strong for Stefanos a week earlier in Washington. He had a massive opportunity to score another win over the Greek and remain on the title course in Toronto. The German led 6-3, 5-2 and wasted two match points in the second set.
Also, he had a break advantage in the decider and three break points at 4-4, all in vain. Alexander won three more points and had numerous chances on the return, earning five breaks but failing to save any of the four opportunities given to Stefanos.
Nothing could separate them in the shortest range up to four strokes. Zverev had a slight edge in the more extended ones, but nothing significant.
Stefanos Tsitsipas saved two match points against Alexander Zverev in Toronto 2018.
With this win, Tsitsipas became the youngest player since Rafael Nadal in Monte Carlo 2006 with three top-10 victories and earned enough points to crack the top-20.
Playing for his first Masters 1000 semi-final, Stefanos held at love in the first game and grabbed a break in the next one when his rival hit a double fault. Alexander broke back at 15 in the third game and landed a forehand winner at 2-2 to forge the advantage.
Playing on a high level, Zverev clinched the set with a break in game nine, taking six of the previous seven games to grab the opener in 32 minutes. Alexander broke at 2-1 in set number two and held with a service winner in game seven to build a 6-3, 5-2 advantage in under an hour!
Serving for the victory in game nine, Zverev sprayed a forehand mistake to suffer a break and keep his rival in contention. The German squandered two match points at 7-6 and 9-8 in the tie break, and the Greek converted the fifth set point when Zverev landed a backhand wide in the 24th point!
Staying composed in the decider, Alexander fired a backhand winner at 2-2 to grab a break. He kept it only for one game, as Tsitsipas broke back at love a few minutes later to extend the drama. The Greek played bold tennis at 4-4 to defend three break chances and delivered a break in the next one after Zverev's double fault to move into the semi-final.