United Cup: Stefanos Tsitsipas kicks off season with a win

Stefanos Tsitsipas defeated Steven Diez in straight sets

by Jovica Ilic
United Cup: Stefanos Tsitsipas kicks off season with a win
© Brendon Thorne / Stringer - Getty Images Sport

World no. 6 Stefanos Tsitsipas is off to a winning start to the season. After missing the start of the United Cup, Stefanos stepped on the court against Canada and defeated Steven Diez 6-2, 6-3 in an hour and 17 minutes. Tsitsipas wished to leave a back injury behind ahead of the Australian Open, and he looked good in this one, controlling the pace on serve and return.

The Greek dropped only three points behind the first serve while struggling a bit on the second. However, he denied the only break point and turned 44% of the return points into three breaks from three opportunities. Tsitsipas held at 30 in the encounter's first game and painted a backhand down the line winner in game two for two break chances.

The Canadian denied them and erased the third after the Greek's loose forehand.

Stefanos Tsitsipas beat Steven Diez at the United Cup.

However, Tsitsipas forced Diez's mistake on the fourth, securing an early break and moving in front.

Stefanos faced the only break point in the third game, saving it with a reliable smash and holding with a forehand crosscourt winner for 3-0. Both players served well in the next four games, with Steven serving to stay in the set at 2-5.

Tsitsipas created set points and seized the first with a forehand crosscourt winner, wrapping up the first part of the duel in 42 minutes. The Greek closed the second set's first game with a forehand winner and pushed strong on the return in the next one.

Stefanos Tsitsipas, United Cup 2024© Brendon Thorne / Stringer - Getty Images Sport

Diez missed a forehand and offered his opponent a break chance. Stefanos seized it after Steven's double fault, moving 2-0 in front and closer to the finish line.

The Greek served well in the third game and held at love with a service winner for 3-0. Diez reduced the deficit to 3-1 after Tsitsipas' backhand error in game four, avoiding a bagel. Stefanos landed a forehand winner in the fifth game, bringing it home and moving closer to the finish line.

The Canadian clinched the sixth game with a service winner, remaining within one break deficit. Stefanos landed a forehand down the line winner in the seventh game for 5-2 and served for the victory in game nine. The Greek sealed the deal with a service winner, holding at 15 and celebrating his first victory of the season.

Stefanos Tsitsipas Steven Diez