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Tsitsipas and Rublev Renew Rivalry for Maiden Masters Title in Monte-Carlo

“Obviously it is important to elevate my game and try and push it to the limits,” says Stefanos Tsitsipas on facing Andrey Rublev in the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters final. EPA-EFE/SEBASTIEN NOGIER

Tennis is all about timing.

Stefanos Tsitsipas believes its about time he breaks through to capture a Masters 1000 title.

A sharp Tsitsipas wasted no time dismissing Dan Evans 6-2, 6-1 in today’s first Rolex Monte-Carlo semifinal. Tsitsipas ended the 30-year-old Briton’s inspired run that saw him shock world No. 1 Novak Djokovic and defeat 2017 semifinalist David Goffin en route to his first career Masters semifinal charging into his first Monte-Carlo final.

Tsitsipas tore through the final five games to beat Evans for the third time in as many meetings. The 2019 ATP Finals champion has surrendered just 22 games in four tournament victories to reach his third Masters 1000 final.

The fourth-seeded Greek renews his rivalry with Andrey Rublev in tomorrow’s Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters final showcasing two of tennis’ top young talents playing for a maiden Masters 1000 championship.

“Obviously it is important to elevate my game and try and push it to the limits,” Tsitsipas said. “I really, really want to be in that position where I come close to winning big tournaments like this, like the Rolex Masters here in Monte-Carlo. It’s a dream of mine to be playing in the final, honestly.”

The sixth-seeded Rublev backed up his stunning upset of 11-time champion Rafael Nadal in last night’s quarterfinals defeating 22-year-old Casper Ruud 6-3, 7-5 in 80 minutes.

The red-hot Rublev raised his 2021 record to an ATP-best 24-4.

The final pits two explosive shotmakers with disparate styles. Rublev is at his best hovering near the baseline blasting deep drives off both wings into the corners, while Tsitsipas will try to impose his stinging serve and all-court acumen on this final.

The pair have split six prior meetings with Rublev out-dueling Tsitsipas 6-4, 3-6, 7-5 in their lone prior final on the red clay of Hamburg last October.

Andrey Rublev backed up his biggest career win, an upset of Rafael Nadal, topping Casper Ruud of Norway at the Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters. EPA-EFE/SEBASTIEN NOGIER

A wild week in Monte-Carlo has seen stars Djokovic and Nadal fall and world No. 2 Daniil Medvedev fail to post after testing positive for Coronavirus last Tuesday.

King of clay Nadal and Djokovic had combined to capture 13 of the last 15 Monte-Carlo crowns and with both Grand Slam champions out, Tsitsipas suggests the time is now for Masters championship changing of the guard.

“They always find solutions to everything. That’s what makes them the great players and kind of like the legends of our sport,” Tsitsipas said. “They can handle the situations very well…

“We’re kind of used to seeing Djokovic and Nadal go deep in the tournaments, at tournaments. Just let the young guns show what they got, I guess. It’s how it should be sometimes. Maybe actually always. It’s time for always, not sometimes.”