For many years the best in men’s tennis have finished their season at the Tour Finals.
In 2019 the Greek stole the headlines at the Australian Open. I was in Melbourne for the Australian Open and the city went mad for Stefanos.
He turned up at one of the biggest stages in the world and looked like a seasoned proffessional. It was perfection from the 20 year old. The performance against Federer was a gutsy nights work, I’ve never seen anything quite like it. The way he performed in pressure moments was exceptional.
He turned up to London as the new kid on the block and brought his stylish flair and a focus that not many young people have.
Stefanos can get frustrated on a tennis court as has everyone but I was so impressed at such a young age how he goes just from point to point and moves on quickly, there isn’t a hangover but a belief in what he is doing!
His performances in the round robin were excellent, there wasn’t pretty much a fault. Alex Zverev got there by the skin of his teeth and the German had a good tournament but was brushed aside 3-6 2-6 by Stefanos.
He also got his teeth into the inform Daniil Medvedev who was playing the best tennis outside of the big three in 2020 winning 7-6 6-4 as the Russian left London without a win.
Against Nadal he played well enough to win the match but lost 7-6 4-6 5-7 to the top seed who missed out on a place in the semi-finals anyway.
I said before in this piece that the way he moves on and learns is exceptional. He went onto take Roger Federer apart with a lot of ease. Those points that got away from him against Nadal he turned on the style.
In the final he had Dominic Thiem in his way, Thiem of course defeated Djokovic and Federer in the round robin so it was going to be a tough test. It was the first match that Tstisipas found himself a set down but his response was exceptional as he produced a stunning comeback.
The maturity of his tennis is what stands out for me. When we talk about someone like Rafa for example that mentality and maturity was there from the beginning and it feels like that with Stefanos. I’m not saying for any moment he will go onto do what he has done as I think he, Novak and Roger are phenomenons but that on court and mental strength has shown to be soo strong soo early!