Stefanos Tsitsipas reaches Barcelona Open QF on Pista Rafa Nadal

Stefanos Tsitsipas beat Roberto Carballes Baena in the third round

by Jovica Ilic
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Stefanos Tsitsipas reaches Barcelona Open QF on Pista Rafa Nadal
© Alex Caparros / Stringer - Getty Images Sport

World no. 7 Stefanos Tsitsipas is through to his fifth Barcelona Open quarter-final. The three-time beaten finalist faced Roberto Carballes Baena on Pista Rafa Nadal and scored a 7-5, 6-3 win in an hour and 46 minutes, extending his winning streak after conquering the Monte Carlo Masters on Sunday.

Stefanos took nine points more than Roberto in a high-quality battle, with both players hitting more winners than unforced errors. The Greek landed 33 winners and 27 errors, firing 19 service winners and sealing the deal in straight sets to preserve energy for the decisive matches while chasing his first Barcelona Open crown.

Tsitsipas played better behind the first serve.

Stefanos Tsitsipas, Barcelona 2024© Alex Caparros / Stringer - Getty Images Sport

While his second serve is still not reliable enough, he defended five out of six break points (four in the first game of the second set) and secured three return games from 11 opportunities, doing enough to reach the last eight.

The better-ranked player served well in the opening game of the encounter and challenged his rival on the return in the next one. Carballes Baena faced four break points and denied them, avoiding an early setback. The Greek fired a service winner in the third game, holding after deuce before the Spaniard grabbed the next one at love for 2-2 after an unreturned serve.

Roberto claimed an entertaining point in the fifth game, creating a break chance with a forehand down the line winner and drawing Stefanos' mistake for a 3-2 advantage.

Roberto Carballes Baena, Barcelona 2024© Alex Caparros / Stringer - Getty Images Sport

Stefanos Tsitsipas will compete in his fifth Barcelona Open quarter-final.

Stefanos stayed focused and pulled the break back in game six after a well-constructed attack, landing a volley winner and locking the result at 3-3.

The Greek held after deuces in game seven after the Spaniard's wayward forehand, with both players serving well in the following four games. Tsitsipas painted a forehand down the line winner in the 11th game for 6-5 and shifted into a higher gear on the return in the next one.

Stefanos created three set points and converted the second after Roberto's costly double fault, sealing the opener in 59 minutes. Tsitsipas had to dig deep at the beginning of the second set, offering Carballes Baena four break points.

The Spaniard wasted them, and the Greek closed the game with a forced error.

Stefanos Tsitsipas, Barcelona 2024© Alex Caparros / Stringer - Getty Images Sport

The returners had no chances in the next four games, which changed at 3-2 for Tsitsipas.

A top-10 player extended the sixth game and converted the third break chance after the rival's loose forehand. Stefanos wasted a 40-15 lead on serve in the seventh game and presented Roberto with a break point. The Greek saved it with a forced error and landed a crafty volley winner for a crucial hold and a 5-2 advantage.

Carballes Baena served to stay in the match in game eight and brought it home at love with a crafty drop shot winner. Tsitsipas responded with a drop shot winner of his own at 5-3 while serving for the win, creating three match points and seizing the second after forcing the rival's error with a smash, booking a place in the last eight.

Stefanos Tsitsipas Rafa Nadal Roberto Carballes Baena
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