After his career success number 450 on clay-courts, Rafael Nadal adds a page to the record book and he gets the twelfth final at the ATP Barcelona. Rafa did better only on the clay-courts of the Roland Garros. The Spanish champion confirms the progress accumulated in the match with Cameron Norrie and gets rid of Pablo Carreno Busta (who had already beaten in the previous seven) with an extremely solid performance.
The final 6-3 6-2 that matures on the threshold of two hours of play is emblematic. The substantial difference is that compared to the first two weekly outings - and the not very convincing test with Norrie in the quarterfinals - the Spanish champion manages to lead in prolonged exchanges and above all to find a certain continuity with the first service.
In the other semifinal, Stefanos Tsitsipas defeated the young Italian Jannik Sinner to get his second final in a row after the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters. This time his rival will be Rafael Nadal. Novak Djokovic loses a match in which he manages to exploit only five of the twenty-eight break points available at the ATP Belgrade semifinal 2021.
Novak Djokovic loses a match that almost lives a life of its own for three hours and twenty-six minutes. After the outings with Soon-woo Kwon and Miomir Kecmanovic, the number one of the seeding loses against Aslan Karatsev.
ATP in Belgrade, WTAs in Stuttgart and Istanbul
The same Karatsev who, in the semi-final on the blue of Melbourne Park, a handful of months ago, had collected the misery of nine games. The Russian not only plays a giant game but above all has the great merit of always, always, stuck to the score.
So much when he seems one step away from the finish line, so much when he seems one step away from the brink. In a challenge that from a genuinely technical point of view only takes off on the sunset of the second set - moment in which the Serbian champion breaks the balance with three scary winners - Karatsev stoically manages not to be influenced when he has the first match point on the ropes and especially to buffer the almost desperate situation of 15-40 that is created in the final.
Karatsev won 7-5 4-6 6-4: waiting for the Russian in the final, the second in his career, will be Matteo Berrettini, who defeated Taro Daniel in the other semifinal for 6-1 6 (5) -7 6-0. The first semifinal of the WTA in Stuttgart 2021 between the world number one Ashleigh Barty and Elina Svitolina gave a great show.
One step away from defeat, the Australian tennis player managed to overturn the result and win the third final of lei 2021, the first two of her she won at the Yarra Valley Classic and in Miami. Final score 4-6 7-6 (5) 6-2.
To challenge the world number one will be Aryna Sabalenka. The Belarusian defeated Simona Halep in two sets, who did not play the best match of her career and suffered the heaviness of her opponent's blows. The match ended with a score of 6-3, 6-2 in favor of Sabalenka.
At the WTA in Istanbul, contending for the title will be Sorana Cirstea and seed no.1 Elise Mertens. The Romanian tennis player defeated Marta Kostyuk with a double 6-4. The Belgian tennis player dominated the semifinal against Veronika Kudermetova from start to finish and ended the match with a score of 6-1, 6-4.