Next-generation star Stefanos Tsitsipas stuns the defending champion and the world No.1 Novak Djokovic after dropping the first set 3-6, 7-5, 6-3 in the quarterfinals of the Shanghai Rolex Masters 2019 on Friday. This is the first time that the four-time champion has not reached the semifinals in Shanghai.
Novak Djokovic started the match on a high note as he held his opening service game at love and broke Stefanos Tsitsipas in the next game. The 16-time Grand Slam champion then saved a breakpoint in the 7th game and went on to win the first set 6-3.
Novak Djokovic took the momentum in the next set as he held comfortable service games. While Tsitsipas was not letting the No.1 seed dominate as he held his nerves and also earned two breakpoints in the sixth game of the set but the Greek failed to take advantage of it.
While Djokovic was serving to stay in the set 5-6, Stefanos Tsitsipas saw it as an opportunity and stepped up to break him and secure the second set at 7-5.
Both the players were toying with each other from the start of the deciding set as they played some brilliant points. After they two players held their opening service games, the Greek gun lifted his level and earned three break points on Djokovic’s serve at 1-2.
However, after the Serb saved the first breakpoint with an overhead volley, the 21-year-old squandered the second as he hit an overhead smash in the net before breaking the 32-year-old to get a lead of 3-1 in the final set.
Stefanos Tsitsipas had the advantage in the deciding set and was certainly on the driver seat as he held a wonderful service game.
Tsitsipas while serving for the match at 5-3 started perfectly as he won three consecutive points to earn three match points. Djokovic managed to save two of them but it was the 21-year-old who prevailed and claimed the set 6-3.
He will meet Daniil Medvedev in the semifinals of the Shanghai Masters 2019 on Saturday. With this victory, Tsitsipas has defeated the ‘Big Three’ in the same year and has also qualified for the ATP Finals. Also, he became the first player to win a match against Novak Djokovic after a set down in the quarterfinals of an event. With the defeat of Djokovic, Rafael Nadal is now only 320 points behind world No.1 in the ATP rankings.