Jannik Sinner remained undefeated at the ATP Finals by defeating Holger Rune, securing his spot in the last four alongside Novak Djokovic.
The top-ranked player in the world was uncertain if he had qualified after winning against Hubert Hurkacz in a match that ended 7-6 (1), 4-6, 6-1 in the afternoon.
The final result showed that Sinner had earned a spot in the semi-finals, making him the first Italian to achieve this at the esteemed tournament. If Rune were to win, he would also advance ahead of the current champion, Djokovic. Despite this, Sinner continued to dominate on his home turf in Turin, adding another impressive win to his record with a 6-2, 5-7, 6-4 victory over the young Danish player.
At the beginning, Sinner dominated by winning four consecutive games until Rune caught up. The second set was more closely contested and both players had physical issues. Rune requested the trainer to put strapping on his right knee while Sinner seemed to strain his back.
After Sinner lost his serve and the second set, the outcome of the match was uncertain. This continued into the final set, until the fourth seed was able to break through and take a 5-4 lead, ultimately winning his first match against Rune.
Hurkacz took the place of the injured Stefanos Tsitsipas and was aware that he could not advance in his match against Djokovic. However, there were still incentives such as 200 ranking points and over £300,000 in prize money at stake, giving him a reason to compete.
The first set was closely contested, with Djokovic ultimately winning due to a perfect tie-break. Despite previously losing all six matches against Djokovic, Hurkacz managed to break serve in the fifth game of the second set and maintain his lead to tie the match. However, Djokovic dominated the final set and emerged as the victor.
Later, he expressed his readiness to accept any outcome, stating to journalists in Turin that he would not become a fan of Sinner. He will either qualify if Sinner wins or end the season with a victory and shift his focus to Davis Cup. That is his current perspective.
On the other hand, Djokovic expressed his approval for the encouraging news from Rafael Nadal about his physical condition. The Spanish player has been out of action for nearly a year due to a hip injury at the Australian Open, causing uncertainty about his future.
On Wednesday, Nadal announced that he will be coming back for the next season. Djokovic praised him, saying, “He’s a fierce competitor who never gives up. Despite his injuries, he continues to persevere. That’s something to admire and respect about him and his determination. It’s fantastic news for the tennis world that he will be returning.”