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Tsitsipas vs Tiafoe Next Gen ATP Finals Milan Preview, Predictions and Live Streaming: Group A leaders, Tsitsipas and Tiafoe meet for the first time

Leye Aduloju in ATP Tour 7 Nov 2018
  • Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Frances Tiafoe is live from Milan on Wednesday, 7 November from 7:30pm local time/ 6:30pm GMT
  • First ever meeting between Tsitsipas and Tiafoe
Stefanos Tsitsipas. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

Stefanos Tsitsipas and Frances Tiafoe open the night session on Day 2 of the Next Gen ATP Finals, with winner taking a big step towards the semi-finals.

Depending on the outcome of the day's earlier Group A match between Juame Munar and Hubert Hurkacz, a win on Wednesday night may be good enough for either player to confirm his semi-final spot.

Both Tsitsipas and Tiafoe earned four-set wins in their respective opening matches on Tuesday, with the top seeded Tsitsipas battling past Spain's Juame Munar 4-3 4-3 3-4 4-2, and Tiafoe holding off some late resistance from Polish No. 1, Hubert Hurkacz to win 4-1 4-2 2-4 4-3.

Tsitsipas was run very close by Munar in the opening match of the tournament, with the Greek needing tie breaks to close out the first two sets. Munar responded by taking a breaker of his own in the third, but Tsitsipas broke late in the fourth set to avoid a fought consecutive tie break, and end the Spaniard’s resistance. The 20-year-old Greek could have done with a higher first serve percentage than 58%, but he protected his serves very well, winning 78% and 56% of points behind his first and second serves respectively.

With the four-game sets and no-ad scoring system, among other innovations, employed for the Next Gen Finals, adapting to the changes may be tricky for first timers, but Tsitsipas did a good job at that on Tuesday, and gave his own form of endorsement to the format after the match.

"I was just more prepared, more ready for what's going to happen. As I said, every point counts. So I was more into the match. I was more focused, more in the moment. And tie-breaks, obviously, are stressful. Anything can happen there", Tsitsipas said. "I believe if you start playing more and more with these rules, then it's just a matter of time to get used to it."

The Greek is looking for the big finish to a superb year, during which he claimed his first career title in Stockholm, made finals in Barcelona and Toronto, and broke into the top 15. He faces a more difficult assignment, on paper at least, in the Next Gen Finals on Wednesday when he takes on Frances Tiafoe. 


Also making his tournament debut on Tuesday, Tiafoe made a brisk start against Hubert Hurkacz, taking the first two sets 4-1 4-2, and opening up a 15-40 lead on his opponent's serve at the start of the third set, but Hurkacz upped the ante from there, saving both break points before holding. 

Frances Tiafoe. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
The Pole then broke in the sixth game to take the set, and push the match into a fourth set, which developed into a gripping tie break. Hurkacz had two set points to force a fifth, but it was Tiafoe who held on to convert a fourth match point of the breaker to take the match.

While Tiafoe's rise has not been as drastic as Tsitsipas', the American has been constantly on the move, peaking at a career-high ranking of 38th in August, and currently placed 40th in the world. The American got off the mark in the ATP's title column early in the year, when he won Delray Beach, while also got to the final in Estoril, made the fourth round in Miami and the third round at Wimbledon- his best Grand Slam performance. 

His form leading up to the Next Gen ATP Finals wasn't great, as he was on a 3-7 run, but his class and experience over Hurkacz, even though he is the younger player, showed in end. Hurkacz still does his most significant work on the Challenger Tour, while he won just three matches on the ATP World Tour all season.

Tiafoe and Tsitsipas are two of the very best in the Next Gen business, and they meet for the first time on Wednesday. There's isn't much room to wriggle with this format, hence serving becomes even more important, and whoever comes through with those first serves at the important junctures of the match will likely take this.

Tsitsipas, I think is better off the ground, as he balances his big forehand with a competent single handed backhand, and I'll just lean towards the top seed to get through this one on Wednesday.

Stefanos Tsitsipas vs Frances Tiafoe is live from Milan on Wednesday, 7 November from 7:30pm local time/ 6:30pm GMT

*Geo-restrictions apply; funded account required or to have placed a bet in the last 24 hours to qualify.


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Tsitsipas vs Tiafoe Next Gen ATP Finals Milan Preview, Predictions and Live Streaming: Group A leaders, Tsitsipas and Tiafoe meet for the first time

Stefanos Tsitsipas and Frances Tiafoe meet for the first time on Wednesday with the sole leadership of Group A on the line. Who will move to the top of the group? Read our preview, predictions and stream the match live online.

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