Stefanos Tsitsipas started the season very well, not only for the semifinal reached at the Australian Open. In Melbourne, the Greek lost the satisfaction of coming back two sets to 20-time Slam champion Rafael Nadal. However, a wild Daniil Medvedev prevented him from hitting his first overall final in a Major.
The 22-year-old from Athens made a comeback in the Masters 1000 in Monte Carlo, the first big event on clay, where he beat the competition by winning the title without leaving a single set on the road. The Athenian player's excellent form of form continued in Barcelona the following week as Stefanos pushed himself to the last act again.
His race broke mockingly against Nadal, who was able to nullify a match point in the tenth game of the third fraction. Tsitsipas will be one of the most anticipated protagonists at the Mutua Madrid Open, with the possibility of approaching the fourth position of the ATP ranking occupied by Dominic Thiem.
In the traditional pre-tournament press conference, the Greek talent showed confidence for the rest of 2021.
Tsitsipas on the Barcelona final
"I feel like I'm getting closer and that I'm creating opportunities to get closer to being number 4," Stefanos Tsitsipas said.
"I'm not going to lie, it's certainly something I have on my mind. I don't think there is anything wrong with it, mainly because I am working so hard to achieve it. Of course, I'm still far away. I have to keep working and producing good tennis.
All these upcoming tournaments are very important because they mean a lot of points," the Greek added. "Right now I am at the head of the Turin Race, and that is something very important to me. I want to keep that and finish the season in the top three, that's another of my goals this year."
He also recalled the Barcelona final against Rafael Nadal: "Probably the final helped me to realize that I have to go for more at certain moments of the games, and not settle or wait for opportunities to come to me," Tsitsipas said.
"Sometimes I feel that in that final I was too passive and that I could have risked more. I could have tried to do more unpredictable things that could have led to something different in the game." Stefanos Tsitsipas finished as the runner-up at the 2019 Madrid Masters.
He defeated Alexander Zverev and Rafael Nadal en route to the title round, where he came up short against Novak Djokovic.