World No. 3 Stefanos Tsitsipas admitted that 27th-ranked Lorenzo Sonego made him work extremely hard during their Cincinnati Masters clash. Tsitsipas, seeded at No. 2, recovered from a set down to beat Sonego 5-7 6-3 6-4 and avoid a shock loss.
Sonego, who has made two ATP finals this year and captured one title, competed extremely well against Tsitsipas but in the end fell just short. "He was going for every single shot and his footwork was close to unbelievable," Tsitsipas said, as quoted on the ATP website.
"He can do damage against high-ranked players. Things got really difficult in a few moments but I stayed there and waited for the opportunity to present itself. "That was a game changer," Tsitsipas said of the hold in the first game of the second set.
"After finding my game from that part of the match onwards, things started working pretty well for me. The psychology kind of changed and I was having that fighting spirit and not letting go was very crucial."
Tsitsipas fought his way back into the match
Sonego had the first break points of the match in the third game but Tsitsipas saved to take a 2-1 lead.
In the sixth game, Tsitsipas had his first two break points but failed to realize. Tsitsipas paid the price for failing to realize break points in the sixth game as Sonego broke the Greek in the 11th game and served out for the opener in the following.
Sonego then had a chance to start the second set with a break but Tsitsipas saved three consecutive break points in the opening game of the set. The Greek then earned his first break of the match in the second game and held on to his serve the rest of the way to force a decider.
After winning the second set, Tsitsipas broke Sonego in the first game of the third set and held to his serve the rest of the match to complete a comeback win. Tsitsipas is set to face next rising Canadian star Felix Auger-Aliassime.