World No. 7 Matteo Berrettini insisted he knew Alejandro Tabilo was a tricky opponent and he felt the Chilean was determined to cause an upset. Berrettini, seeded at No. 5, beat world No. 184 Tabilo 6-4 7-5 in his Indian Wells Masters opener.
Berrettini claimed the first break of the match in the third game and then held on to his serve the rest of the way to win the opener. Tabilo put up a much bigger resistance in the second set but Berrettini earned a break in the 11th game and served out for the match in the following game.
"It’s been a little bit of time to get the first win, but I’m so happy," said Berrettini. "I love the conditions here, the place, it’s amazing. It’s called Tennis Paradise and it feels like that. "I didn’t know Alejandro that well.
I knew that he was a tricky player. He played three matches here so he was feeling confident. He believed that he could win and I felt it, so it was even tougher to beat him."
Berrettini hopes to make the Nitto ATP Finals
Berrettini is currently sixth on the Race to Turin and he will likely make the prestigious season-ending event.
Berrettini admitted he didn't expect to be in such a good position to qualify for the Nitto ATP Finals. “It would be a really nice thing to end the year,” Berrettini said of qualifying for the Nitto ATP Finals.
“I didn’t expect it when I started the year, but now I’m in a good position. “I have been in London and I know how great it was, and I think having it in Italy would be great for me, for the crowd and for tennis in general.
It would mean a lot to everybody, with Jannik as well. It is just showing that Italian tennis is really healthy, a lot of players are coming up and playing well”.