Hollywoodbets Sports Blog: Nitto ATP Finals: Tsitsipas vs Rublev Preview

Nitto ATP Finals: Tsitsipas vs Rublev Preview

Nitto ATP Finals: Tsitsipas vs Rublev Preview

Damien Kayat previews the round-robin Nitto ATP Finals match between Stefanos Tsitsipas and Andrey Rublev.

Image Copyright - Steve Haag Sports.

Two women looking excitedly at cellphone

Stefanos Tsitsipas 7/10 | Andrey Rublev 1/1
Andrey Rublev looked slightly out of his depth in his debut ATP Finals appearance on Sunday. That may have been a result of first-time jitters. Or perhaps the five-time winner on tour this year was feeling the impact of a particularly elongated campaign. Either way, Rublev is going to have to serve better to win this match. He only managed to make 41% of his first serves in the first set against Nadal. In the second set he never won a single point on his 2nd serve! That’s a disturbing statistic. But I think that Nadal is singularly suited to take on Rublev. The lefty is able to expose Rublev’s backhand weaknesses with those cross-court exchanges. I think Rublev has shown plenty of quality this year and should be far better this time out. Not only has he won five titles this year, he also has two Grand Slam quarterfinals to his name. 

Defending champion Stefanos Tsitsipas will feel deflated after the defeat to Thiem. He surrendered slightly meekly following an excellent 2nd set rally. 2020 has been a year of consistency as opposed to breakthrough for the Greek. He has only one title to his name: in Marseille. Finals in Hamburg and Dubai accompany semi-final runs at Roland Garros and the Western and Southern Open. I just wonder how dejected he may feel after that Thiem defeat. He does have the tendency to let matches simmer in his consciousness. The Greek will need to get his backhand down the line in working order. Any crosscourt backhands with little action will be brutalized by the Rublev forehand (just look at their recent Hamburg match as Exhibit A). 

This one has coin-toss written all over it. They share the head-to-head spoils at 2-2. They have met twice on clay this year, with Rublev winning in Hamburg and Tsistipas exacting revenge in Paris. I personally feel that Rublev will have the edge on this surface. All the first match anxiety will be gone and he will much prefer this clash of styles. 

Written by Damien Kayat.

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