Jannik Sinner in the first round of rivalry between young tennis stars, the 19-year-old beat 20-year-old Jenson Brooksby at the Washington Open (Citi Open).
Fighting for a place at the top of the Washington Open 2021 season, the Italian managed to beat the host player, Brooksby 7-6, 6-1.
The fifth seed is yet to drop a set at the Washington Open and snapped a four-game losing streak before dropping in the US capital. After picking up his first win in Washington over Emil Ruusuvuori, he knocked out three home players, namely Sebastian Korda, Steve Johnson and now Brooksby, to reach a third final of the 2021 season.
The 24-year-old was forced to go the extra mile against the world number 130, who has hit the ground running this season after he reached the final of the ATP tournament for the first time in his career in Newport and maintained momentum in Washington after advancing to the semifinals without dropping a set, including beating second seed, Felix Auger Aliassime.
There was little difference between Sinner and the hosts in a tight first set. Neither player managed to create any break point opportunities in the first ten games after the home game forced the Italian to retreat to the back of the court.
The world number 130 continued to keep the fifth seed moving and cornering her behind the baseline.
But as the match progressed, Sinner seemed to be able to read Brooksby’s game better. He stepped up his serve, overwhelmed Brooksby, saved three set points at 5-6, and forced a tiebreak. From that point on, he took control of the game, including snatching the last four games in a row to win the first set which lasted 57 minutes.
By pocketing the momentum of victory in the first set, the door of opportunity was wide open for the fifth seed. In contrast, Brooksby, who usually dictates the game with a backhand, made more mistakes from these strokes. The fifth seed took advantage of the situation, breaking the home side on two occasions and snatching the last five games in a row to seal victory.
Now, Jannik Sinner is the first Italian male to reach the Washington Open final.
Sinner will be seeking a second title of the season after winning the Great Ocean Road Open in Melbourne earlier this season and his third career title against host Mackenzie McDonald in the Washington Open final.