Greek number one Stefanos Tsitsipas signed off the year in brilliant style as he won the 2019 ATP Finals with a hard-fought, but ultimately satisfying three-set win over Dominic Thiem in the final on Sunday.
Tsitsipas won 6-7(6), 6-2, 7-6(4) at the O2 Arena in a title-decider that lasted over two and a half hours, to lift his first ever ATP Finals and become the youngest to do so in 18 years. Lleyton Hewitt was just 20, more than a year younger than Tsitsipas when he won the title in 2001.
What’s interesting to note is that it’s now been four years since either of the Fab Three members, Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal or Roger Federer won this title as Tsitsipas followed the footsteps of Andy Murray, Grigor Dimitrov and Alexander Zverev to lift his maiden trophy.
Tsitsipas admitted the second set play came as a bolt from the blue from him too. He said he wasn’t sure how he played that well in that set but credited how relaxed his mind felt at that time.
The Greek winner added:
“I didn’t give him much options to play with in the second set. It was pretty much an excellent set for me.”
Tsitsipas also said:
“It was pretty frustrating for me to be playing with such nerves for the first time in such a big event. I was a break up, I couldn’t manage to hold it. Things were decided in the tie-break and I am so relieved by this outstanding performance and fight that I gave out on the court.”
Acknowledging he had the benefit of having a supportive crowd behind him Tsitsipas also said it was like there was “an army behind him”.
He added the crowd gave him a lot of strengths at moments where he was flagging and motivated him to achieve the result he wanted to on the court.
“I would like to thank every single one [of the fans] who came here to support me today with the Greek flags. They made it feel like home.”
This was Tsitsipas’ third title of the year, following on from his wins at Marseille and Estoril in 2019 and having won the Stockholm Open last year. Tsitsipas was also the winner of the ATP Next Gen title in 2018 making his transition to the big leagues a hugely successful one.