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Tomljanovic, Ajla

04.06.2020 - 14:38 Uhr

Matteo Berrettini is a three-time ATP Tour titlist and one of only four Italian men to have cracked the Top 10 in the FedEx ATP looks at five things you should know about the 24-year-old.1) His Breakthrough Came In GstaadBerrettini entered the 2018 J. Safra Sarasin Swiss Open Gstaad aiming to reach his first tour-level quarter-final with no doubles victories on the ATP Tour to his name.Ranked No. 84 in the ATP Rankings, the Italian defeated three consecutive seeded players to take the singles trophy, before adding the doubles title to his collection later in the day.“[Gstaad was an] unbelievable week. I won singles and doubles there and I had never won an ATP Tour doubles match, so it was all in a rush. I will never forget that week,” said Berrettini.2) He Elevated His Game In 2019Berrettini began the 2019 ATP Tour season at No. 52 in the FedEx ATP Rankings and had reached the semi-finals or better at just one ATP Tour event. But the Italian put together an impressive set of results to qualify for the Nitto ATP Finals for the first time and finish the year at No. 8.Berrettini reached the semi-finals or better at eight tour-level events, winning ATP Tour crowns in Budapest and Stuttgart and finishing as runner-up in Munich. The 6’5” right-hander finished the year with 43 tour-level victories, including six against Top 10 opponents.After reaching the Erste Bank Open semi-finals in Vienna, Berrettini became only the fourth Italian to crack the Top 10 in the FedEx ATP Rankings. The three-time ATP Tour titlist was also selected by his peers as the Most Improved Player of the Year in the 2019 ATP Awards.[TENNIS AT HOME]3) His Forehand Is MassiveDuring the fourth episode of Tennis United, Berrettini’s girlfriend and WTA World No. 56 Ajla Tomljanovic discussed the problems she encounters when training with the Italian No. 1.“He wants to get better too and my arm is hurting by like the 40th minute because his forehand is massive,” said Tomljanovic.The Aussie has also proven to be a helpful workout partner during the COVID-19 pandemic.“We work out together and it’s really helpful that she’s there. She pushes me to run more and do more,” said Berrettini. "I used to work out with my brother and it helped me a lot, so I’m really happy when I can train with someone.”4) He Made Italian History At The 2019 US OpenAt last year’s US Open, Berrettini became only the second Italian man to reach the US Open semi-finals after Corrado Barazzutti in 1977.Building on his run to the Round of 16 at Wimbledon, the Italian beat Andrey Rublev and Gael Monfils in back-to-back matches to reach the last four in New York. Berrettini’s win against Monfils will be remembered as one of the matches of the tournament, with the Rome-born star eventually overcoming the 2016 semi-finalist 3-6, 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 7-6(5) after three hours and 56 minutes. Berrettini’s run was ended by eventual champion Rafael Nadal in straight sets.[ATP APP]5) He's Improving His StaminaDuring his breakthrough 2019 season, Berrettini contested 73 matches across 26 tournaments.The three-time ATP Tour titlist reached three semi-finals late in the year at the US Open, Rolex Shanghai Masters and Erste Bank Open, which led to struggles with fatigue during his debut appearance at the Nitto ATP Finals. As a result of that experience, Berrettini decided to make off-court training a priority during his pre-season training block in Monte Carlo.“We were all tired playing at the end of the year, but all the guys [in London] had more energy. They were better than me physically,” said Berrettini. “When the tournament finished, I told my team that I wanted to improve this for the next year. I wanted to arrive in better condition if I qualified again.”

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Editor's Note: is resurfacing features to bring fans closer to their favourite players during the current suspension in tournament play. This story was originally published on 28 July 2018..It’s not often that you find two iconic athletes from different sports on the same court. But on Friday, British stars Andy Murray and Wayne Rooney met at the Citi Open for a short hit and game of football-tennis.“He’s obviously had an incredible career, one of the best players ever in English football history,” said Murray, whose grandfather played for Scotland’s Hibernian F.C. “It’s nice to finally meet him. I’ve never met him before, so it’s very cool.”Rooney, the leading goal-scorer in England National Team and Manchester United history, currently plays for local club D.C. United of Major League Soccer, so he couldn’t pass up an opportunity to meet Murray. The football legend was in the stands when the Scot captured his first Wimbledon title in 2013 to end Great Britain’s 77-year wait for a home champion.“It was incredible, a real achievement, and [Novak] Djokovic at the time looked unbeatable, so it was a great victory and a great experience to be there,” Rooney said. “It was the first time I was at Wimbledon, and [it was] history for Britain, so it was a fantastic moment to be there.”Murray, who was joined by brother Jamie Murray — the fourth seed in the doubles draw with Bruno Soares at the Citi Open — on Stadium Court, grew up playing football and follows the Premier League as he travels the world. Rooney hasn’t been able to pick up a tennis racquet much, but he says he loves watching the sport. His game was put to the test when the pair rallied, and Murray hit some serves to the football star.“It was decent. Forehand was alright, he almost returned a couple serves. But yeah, not bad. Backhand needs a bit of work,” Murray joked. “He did alright for someone who doesn’t play much. It was good.” Murray will now turn his attention to the ATP World Tour 500-level tournament in Washington D.C. The 31-year-old will face American Mackenzie McDonald in the first round, and could face compatriot and fourth seed Kyle Edmund in a second-round blockbuster. .videoWrapper { position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; /* 16:9 */ padding-top: 25px; height: 0; } .videoWrapper iframe { position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%; }