On Top of the World 👑
I tried just to play even level, trying to take a couple of chances in the third set. – Jannik Sinner
In breaking tennis news, Italian Jannik Sinner rallied from a two-set deficit to pull off an unlikely comeback and win his first Grand Slam Tournament with a 3-6, 3-6, 6-4, 6-4, 6-3 victory over Russian Daniil Medvedev to claim the 2024 Australian Open.
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Sinner Sinks Medvedev
Jannik Sinner, a 22-year-old who’d never been slammed–Grand Slammed that is. But that all changed over the weekend as the young paesano from northern Italy became only the second Italian to win a Grand Slam event, with the first being Adriano Panatta who won the French Open in 1976.
Never, stop, fighting!
My first Grand Slam title, lost for words, forza!!!!!! 🏆🏆🏆🏆 pic.twitter.com/y8R8eJ1VTh
— Jannik Sinner (@janniksin) January 28, 2024
But this was hardly a walk in the park for Sinner. Entering his Aussie Open finale with the hard-hitting Medvedev, Sinner had lost only one set in the entire tournament. Some tennis rumors said that the young Italian might come out flat after beating the best in the world, Novak Djokovic, in the semis, and that the final was almost anticlimactic.
Despite the Australian Open odds favoring Sinner as a better than 2-1 favorite, the unfolding scenario was reminiscent of a trap game in the NFL where a superior team, coming off a huge win, faces a vastly inferior team the following week and is either lethargic in victory or stunned in defeat.
And if you watched the first two sets, Sinner was writing a script that mirrored that precise screenplay after falling behind 3-6, 3-6, to the high-flying Russian. He was jittery, uncharacteristically error-prone, and appeared overwhelmed by the moment. After holding serve in 86 of 88 service games, Medvedev broke Sinner in just the third game of the match.
However, Medvedev had played 31 sets, the most of any player at a major, and the tread on his tires soon began to wear thin. Sinner could feel the tempo changing as fatigue set in for his opponent and he took full advantage.
“I got a little tired physically, but [in] every other match before, my opponents didn’t manage to take advantage of it,” Medvedev said. “During the match, every time it was the same story, after two sets, my energy level dropped, was dropping because I didn’t have a perfect sleep, I was playing long before.
“So, let’s call it my fault because I needed to win easier matches, but sometimes it’s tough.”
Soon the tables would turn with Sinner wresting the momentum and seizing the day, winning the next three sets, and sending Medvedev to his third Australian Open finals defeat.
“He played really, really well for the first two sets or two-and-a-half sets. I tried just to play even level, trying to take a couple of chances in the third set, which I’ve done,” he said. “When you win one very important game, the match can change occasionally, and that was the case today.
“I just tried to stay as long in the court as possible, knowing that he has spent so many hours on the court. The more the match goes on, maybe physically I’m a little bit better today, because he played so many hours. I think that today that was the key.”
— #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) January 28, 2024