After Novak Djokovic, Andrey Rublev also made a winning start at the ATP Finals in Turin, beating Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-4, 6-4 in an hour and 31 minutes. These rivals met 12 months ago in Turin, and Stefanos prevailed in the deciding tie break after a cracker.
He had no chance tonight, never creating a break point and suffering two breaks from seven opportunities offered to the Russian. Andrey had won only seven of the previous 13 matches before Turin. Still, there was nothing wrong with his game tonight, barely losing a point behind the first serve and creating a massive gap in the more extended rallies above four strokes to bring the victory home.
Not feeling at 100% physically before the tournament, Stefanos could not match the rival's pace today, making too many errors and failing to take the ball away from Andrey's racquet. The Greek saved three break chances in the encounter's opening game and brought it home after forcing the Russian's mistake to avoid an early setback.
Andrey Rublev defeated Stefanos Tsitsipas in straigfht sets in Turin.
Rublev held at 15 in game two to get his name on the scoreboard before reaching two deuces on the return in the next one without creating a break point.
Andrey secured the fourth game with a service winner and earned a precious break a few minutes later when Stefanos sent a forehand long. The Russian cemented the lead with an ace in game six and fired a service winner next time on serve to forge a 5-3 advantage.
Stefanos served well after getting broken, but that did not help him on the return, as Andrey clinched the opener with an ace at 5-4 after 42 minutes. Tsitsipas defended a break point in the second set's opening game and struggled at 1-1 before holding after four deuces and remaining on the positive side.
Like the opening set, Rublev broke the opponent in the fifth game and opened a 3-2 gap that moved him closer to the finish line. The Russian secured the sixth game with a service winner and landed another at 4-3 to maintain the lead.
Tsitsipas had no troubles bringing the ninth game home at love, and he had to create the damage on the return in the next one if he wanted to extend the duel. Instead, Rublev held with a lucky net cord winner to emerge at the top and make a winning start.