Novak Djokovic defeats Matteo Berrettini 6-2, 6-1
Djokovic came to London extremely motivated to take back the world number 1 ranking from Nadal, and came out firing in his first match. Djokovic dialed in from the start, had Berrettini out of sorts early and often, controlling points from the baseline after deep returns. Berrettini never had a chance in this one.
Berrettini won just 47% of his first serve points & 33% of his second serve points.
Djokovic won 75% of his first serve points & a ridiculous 80% of his second serve points.
Dominic Thiem defeats Roger Federer 7-5,7-5
Thiem took it to Federer in straight sets, improving to 5-2 in their head to head matchup. Thiem was too good off the ground, keeping Federer off balanced and unable to move forward the majority of the match. Thiem sent a message at 5-5 in the second set when he broke Federer at love, playing insanely big and making Federer uncomfortable. Federer struggled with timing and his movement at certain points in the match.
Federer hit 21 second serves and Thiem won 12 of those points. (52%)
Alexander Zverev defeats Rafael Nadal 6-2, 6-4
The reigning champ seems to enjoy this event and the indoor court definitely suits his style of play. Within his first three serves of the match, Zverev had already cracked one 144MPH and rarely hit a serve slower than the mid 130’s all match. He was hitting Nadal off the court with his massive serve/forehand combination the entire match, taking Nadal’s time away, and giving him little room for error. The more spin Nadal put on defensive shots, the higher the ball sat up for Zverev, allowing him to push Nadal further back with his heavy strokes. Nadal had to battle throughout the match to hold serve.
83-minute match. Nadal had 13 forehands errors & 3 winners. Zverev won 88% of his first serve points
Stefanos Tsitipas defeats Daniel Medvedev 7-6 (5), 6-4
Tsitipas played a dominant match from start to finish, especially on his serve in his first-round match. He didn’t allow Medvedev to gain any ground in his service games, and frustrated the world number four player for the majority of the hour and 42-minute affair. Tsitipas played a very tactical match and used deep defensive shots with very little pace to reset points against Medvedev, a successful strategy. Medvedev is not a player that likes to generate power himself. He is more of a counter puncher.
Tsitsipas was 0-5 head to head vs Medvedev previously. Tsitipas allowed 0 break point opportunities & won 89% of his first serve points
Roger Federer defeats Matteo Berrettini 7-6 (2), 6-3
Federer regained his form in his second-round match and was really never threatened by the young Italian. Federer was back to his ways of dictating points and taking time away from his opponent as we have seen him do for two decades. He found a couple patterns to break down Berrettini’s backhand and movement and never let go of his stranglehold. Federer ultimately broke down Berrettini’s will to battle anymore, and finished him off easily in the second set.
Roger Federer won the year end event for the first time in 2003 (16 years ago)
Dominic Thiem defeats Novak Djokovic 5-7 (5), 6-3, 7-5 (5)
Arguably the most entertaining three set match of the year, this one felt like a heavyweight fight, with momentum swinging heavily in both directions. Fans watched in awe as Djokovic acted as a human backboard, chasing down Thiem’s pancaked forehands and backhands, hoping to draw an error. Thiem refused to let Djokovic gain the upper hand in exchanges.
Thiem was unleashing a flurry of backhands and forehands down the line early in rallies, applying pressure on Djokovic right away. He even managed to crack a backhand 102MPH for a winner. Thiem has now strung together two big wins on the fast indoor hard courts, a positive sign for the “clay court specialist.”
Thiem was 4/4 on break point opportunities & hit 50 winners against Djokovic