ATP Finals Daily Preview: Novak Djokovic Plays Jannik Sinner for the Group Lead - UBITENNIS
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ATP Finals Daily Preview: Novak Djokovic Plays Jannik Sinner for the Group Lead



Novak Djokovic on Sunday in Turin (

Day 3 sees the second of three round-robin matches for half the field. 


With his three-set victory on Sunday night over Holger Rune, Novak Djokovic clinched the year-end No.1 ranking for a record-extending eighth time.  And now he strives for a record-breaking seventh ATP Finals crown.  But on Tuesday, the Italian No.1 Jannik Sinner stands in his way of taking the group lead.

By contrast, Rune will square off against Stefanos Tsitsipas, as both look to earn their first round-robin victory, and keep their hopes of advancement alive.

Each day, this preview will analyze the most intriguing matchup, while highlighting the other matches on the schedule.  Tuesday’s play begins at 12:00pm local time.

Novak Djokovic (1) vs. Jannik Sinner (4) – Not Before 9:00pm

This is a 16th ATP Finals appearance for Djokovic, as he has only failed to qualify once out of the last 17 years, when he missed the second half of the 2017 season due to injury.  He is now 47-17 at this event, and has advanced out of round-robin play 11 out of 15 times.  Novak survived an over three-hour affair with Holger Rune on Sunday, extending his current hard court winning streak to 19 matches.

This is a second ATP Finals appearance for Sinner, and his first time officially qualifying.  In 2021, he was an alternate and replaced Matteo Berrettini after one match, going 1-1 in round-robin play.  But after a career-best season, the 22-year-old Italian is the World No.4.  Sinner defeated Tsitsipas in straight sets on Sunday, spending less than half the time on court that Djokovic did.

Novak leads their head-to-head 3-0, though this will be their first meeting on a hard court.  They’ve met at Wimbledon in both of the last two years, with Djokovic coming from two-sets-down to overcome Sinner in the 2022 quarterfinals, and beating him in straight sets in this year’s semifinals. 

In a best-of-three encounter, and at his home country’s biggest event, I expect Sinner to make this an extremely competitive matchup.  But Djokovic remains the favorite, as his all-court skills are not quite matched by Jannik.  And Novak has pulled out so many tight matches over the younger generation since losing the Wimbledon final to Carlos Alcaraz. 

Other Notable Matches on Tuesday:

Santiago Gonzalez and Edouard Roger-Vasselin (4) vs. Maximo Gonzalez and Andres Molteni (7) – Both of these teams lost their opening round-robin matches on Sunday. 

Stefanos Tsitsipas (6) vs. Holger Rune (8) – Rune is 2-0 against Tsitsipas, having beaten him twice in 2022.  In the fourth round of Roland Garros, Holger won in four.  In the final of Stockholm on an indoor hard court, Holger won in straights.

Ivan Dodig and Austin Krajicek (1) vs. Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos (5) – These teams will battle for the group lead on Tuesday.  In this year’s Roland Garros semifinals, Dodig and Krajicek defeated Granollers and Zeballos in straight sets.

Tuesday’s full Order of Play is here.


Alexander Zverev Deserves More Respect According To Boris Becker

According to Boris Becker, Alexander Zverev deserves more respect from tennis journalists.



Alexander Zverev (@WeAreTennis - Twitter)

Boris Becker has claimed that Alexander Zverev deserves more respect despite Zverev failing to live up to his potential at Grand Slams.


Zverev has only reached one Grand Slam final in his career despite being a regular inside the world’s top ten as well as performing at regular ATP events.

This season Zverev played a limited schedule after recovering from an ankle injury but still managed to qualify for the Nitto ATP Finals.

However most critics have been loud when judging Zverev’s career as it was looking likely that he would be a regular Grand Slam champion.

The German has failed to live up to expectations but former Grand Slam champion Boris Becker believes Zverev deserves more respect.

Speaking to Eurosport Becker also said that Zverev’s father being the coach is a more than successful approach when it comes to the former US Open finalist’s career, “In my opinion, he doesn’t get enough respect from the tennis experts internationally,” Becker explained.

“They’re all talking about the young three or four, but don’t give Zverev, Medvedev or Rublev enough respect. He’s playing with his fist in his pocket a little bit, wants everyone show that he is not a thing of the past, but that his best time is yet to come.

“Surely his father knows best what is good for his son, but if you look into the box at the competition, you can also see changes.”

Becker has followed Zverev for most of his career so knows that the best is yet to come from the German.

Alexander Zverev will look to prove himself next season when he starts his 2024 season when he represents Germany at the United Cup.

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Juan Carlos Ferrero Analyses Key Areas For Carlos Alcaraz’s Development

Juan Carlos Ferrero has outlined the next steps in Carlos Alcaraz’s development.



(@tennisnewsbrazil - Twitter)

Carlos Alcaraz’s coach, Juan Carlos Ferrero has analysed the key areas for the Spaniard’s development heading into the 2024 season.


The former world number one’s season has come to an end after a successful year which saw him win the Wimbledon title as well as winning two Masters 1000 titles.

Alcaraz capped off an incredible season by reaching the semi-finals at the Nitto ATP Finals, where he lost to Novak Djokovic.

However there is a long way for the Spaniard to go if he wants to consistently go toe-to-toe with Novak Djokovic.

Speaking to Marca Alcaraz’s coach Juan Carlos Ferrero spoke about the Spaniard’s development and said that Alcaraz is too emotional, “Be more regular in games, not open doors. Sometimes there are mistakes and it is something that we have to improve a lot,” Ferrero commented.

“Although it is true that he opens doors, he always competes well and at the highest level. He knows it, the other day he already said that Novak doesn’t give you one. He has to improve his decision making and he will achieve that with experience. Carlos is very emotional and that sometimes helps him and other times not so much.”

It’s clear Alcaraz’s high-quality is there but to consistently do it against Djokovic is another task altogether as the Spaniard looks to go from strength-to strength next season.

One area that is clearly a priority for Alcaraz is physical conditioning especially considering what happened against Djokovic at Roland Garros earlier in the season.

Ferrero said that will be a clear focus heading into 2024 but couldn’t guarantee that Alcaraz will play a tournament before the Australian Open, “Because of the year and the fatigue he has been in, what he needs is rest and disconnecting for 8-10 days with his friends,” Ferrero stated.

“From there, the thinking must go back to working really hard, strong and well to start very strongly in Australia. One can never be sure of that. Sometimes you play a tournament and it doesn’t go well, you left home too early. There are many ways of thinking.

“This year we haven’t played Australia and he finishes number two. That means there is no urgency to play a tournament early. Carlos is a player who enters competition quickly, you don’t usually see him without rhythm.

“Although it is true that he becomes more dangerous from the round of 16, from the quarter-finals. I am confident that the two exhibition matches and the training sessions will help us play a good tournament.”

Alcaraz will be looking to play the Australian Open which starts on the 15th of January after the Spaniard missed last year’s tournament due to a leg injury.

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Australian Open Chief Confident Nadal Will Play But Kyrgios’ Participation Uncertain



Nadal RG 2022 by Night (foto @RolandGarros)

The tournament director of the Australian Open says he is ‘certain’ that Rafael Nadal will play at the Grand Slam even though the Spaniard has yet to outline his comeback plans. 


Craig Tiley told reporters in Melbourne on Thursday he hopes to receive some clarity over Nadal’s intentions in the next couple of weeks but is confident he will play. However, the tennis official had previously claimed in October that the former world No.1 had already committed to play in the event before his team denied that statement.  

Nadal, who has won 22 Grand Slam titles, hasn’t played a Tour match since his second round defeat at the Australian Open in January due to a hip injury. He was originally expecting to take an eight-week break but the recovery didn’t go to plan and he ended up having surgery. In May he confirmed that he will take an extended break from the sport to heal his body and admitted that retirement next year is a possibility.

“Rafa has been training, I follow him closely, probably every day because he’s a massive drawcard for us,” the Reuters News Agency quoted Tiley as saying. 
“He wants to play, he’s obviously planning on playing. It all depends on how he pulls up.
“Hopefully in the next week or the next two weeks, we get some specific confirmation of that. I’m certain Rafa will be here because he’s not going to want to miss the opportunity to repeat what he did a couple of years ago.”

Earlier this month Nadal confirmed that he intends to return to the Tour but admits that he will continue to experience a degree of pain. Although he has yet to give any information about which tournament he will begin his comeback at. The 2024 season begins during the first week of January.

“I’m well, training, and happy. I’m at a good stage of my life,” quoted Nadal as telling reporters in Barcelona.
“Until now I didn’t know if I would play tennis again someday, and now I genuinely believe I will. I’m still not ready to say when, but I’m able to train increasingly longer, and the progress is good.’

Will Kyrgios play?

Another player Tiley is eager to welcome back is home player and former Wimbledon Finalist Nick Kyrgios who has only played one Tour-level match this season due to injury. He underwent knee surgery in January and then tore a ligament in his wrist during the summer. As a result, the Australian currently doesn’t have an ATP ranking due to his inactivity. 

“We have spoken to Nick, and he obviously wants to do the best he possibly can to give him the best chance to play in January,” Tiley said of Kyrgios.
“Whether he’s playing, whether he’s doing something else, Nick will be here in January and to get him to play will be great. But we’ve got to take it as it comes and he’s got to make sure he takes care of his health …” 

Kyrgios recently worked as an analyst for the Tennis Channel during this year’s ATP Finals in Turin and gave a brief update on his ongoing recovery during a segment. 

“After last year, I had such a great year, and I’m so hungry to get back out there,” the 2022 Wimbledon finalist commented.
“So I’m doing everything I can to get back out there. Obviously, you know how injuries are every day, just doing the rehab, doing the gym work.”

The Australian Open will begin on Sunday 14th January. Novak Djokovic and Aryna Sabalenka are the defending champions. 

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