On the inaugural day of the 2020 ATP Cup, Karen Khachanov opened Russia’s Group D encounter against Italy with a 7-5 6-3 win over Stefano Travaglia, prevailing in an hour and 22 minutes after saving a set point. “It was good to win, no doubt about it,” said the World No.
17 during his post-match talk with the press. “And the first win of the season. I took some time to adjust a little bit to his game as I didn't know much about him. I think he started pretty aggressively, like, no pressure and played really well until 5-2 up”.
But for the Russian, who was 3-5 and set point down in the first set, ‘playing well’ is not the only pillar that supports a victory. “It's so important,” he said, referring to his ability to overcome the set point before working his way to take the reins of the match.
“I think sometimes tennis is about this. It's not only about the quality of the game, how you play, but about the mental part and the mindset that you have on this important point. So sometimes it's not about where you put the ball, but it's just a reaction and the reality that you want it”.
In the second singles match, Daniil Medvedev got past Fabio Fognini 1-6 6-1 6-3 to seal Russia’s win, and Khachanov/Medvedev confirmed their domination over the Italians by defeating Simone Bolelli and Paolo Lorenzi 6-4 6-3.