10sBalls.com • TennisBalls.com

Tennis News • Fritz, Tsitsipas win titles in third-set tiebreakers and head to Wimbledon with momentum

By Ricky Dimon

In an all-American showdown for the Rothesay International title, Taylor Fritz outlasted Maxime Cressy 6-2, 6-7(4), 7-6(4) on Saturday afternoon.

As competitive as the scoreline was, it was a well-deserved victory for Fritz. The world No. 14 did not face a single break point and broke Cressy’s serve twice. In total, Fritz won 30 return points to Cressy’s 10 over the course of two hours and 17 minutes.

It marked the third ATP title in Fritz’s career and now two of the three have come in Eastbourne (previously in 2019). He also lifted the trophy at this year’s Indian Wells Masters.

“There is something about this place,” Fritz said during the trophy ceremony. “It is where I won my first title and when I got here on the first day this week, I felt that I was playing so much better than before. This place has a special spot in my heart…. My grass season wasn’t going great before I arrived here. But it is great to beat these players and it gives me confidence. I played really well all week and going into Wimbledon, I feel good.”

There could be a Fritz-Cressy rematch at the All-England Club, although Cressy would have to successfully navigate a rough first-round draw. The 25-year-old has to go up against Felix Auger-Aliassime on Tuesday. Whoever wins that marquee matchup would be on a collision course with Fritz for the fourth round in Rafael Nadal’s section of the draw.

Fritz opens with Lorenzo Musetti and has no apparent grass-court threats anywhere near him on his way to the second week.

Also going into London with plenty of momentum are Stefanos Tsitsipas and Roberto Bautista Agut. Another third-set tiebreaker had to decide the Mallorca Championships final, with Tsitsipas prevailing over Bautista Agut 6-4, 3-6, 7-6(2).

“It looks like I’m playing longer matches on grass than I do on clay,” the sixth-ranked Green joked in his on-court interview. “This was an incredible fight and an incredible battle. I know it can be difficult for one person to deal with the loss, but I think for tennis it is great that we are able to play at this high level and show our sport [at its limits].”Ricky contributes to10sballs.com and also maintains his own tennis website, The Grandstand. You can follow him on twitter at @Dimonator.