ATP Sofia: Jannik Sinner downs Gael Monfils to lift fourth ATP title

The 20-year-old Jannik Sinner claimed the third ATP title of the season in Sofia, defeating Gael Monfils 6-3, 6-4 in an hour and 17 minutes. Thus, Sinner defended the trophy he claimed in Bulgaria last year and added 250 ATP points to his tally in the quest for the first ATP Finals berth in front of the home crowd in Turin. Gael barely played a serious match before the final, advancing into the title clash of at least one ATP tournament for the 17th straight year but standing powerless against world no. 14. Jannik became the sixth player in 2021 with at least three ATP titles and the seventh active player with at least four ATP titles before turning 21. The Italian wins 13 points more than the Frenchman, dropping 12 points in ten service games and defending both break chances to mount the pressure on the more experienced rival. Gael could not follow that pace, struggling on the second serve and getting broken twice from four opportunities given to Jannik to settle with the runner-up prize.

Jannik Sinner secured the fourth ATP title in Sofia.

Their previous clash came at the US Open, and the Italian battled past the Frenchman in five sets in that one, playing on a higher level today to seal the deal in under 80 minutes and add another trophy to his already rich collection. The defending champion held with a service winner in the opening game and landed a forehand down the line winner in the next one to grab an early advantage. Not finding his strokes, Monfils netted a forehand in the third game to fall further behind before holding at 15 in game four to get his name on the scoreboard. Not slowing down, Sinner placed a service winner in the fifth game to open a 4-1 lead and control the result.

Serving at 4-2, Jannik netted a backhand and faced two break chances, the only in his service games. Hitting well, the young gun saved them both and painted a backhand down the line winner to bring the game home and move 5-2 ahead. The Italian served for the set at 5-3 and held at 15 to secure the opener and move closer to the finish line. Not moving well, Monfils sprayed a backhand mistake at the beginning of the second set to experience an instant break and fell 2-0 behind following Sinner’s service winner in game two. Jannik held after deuce in game four after another extended rally and secured the sixth game to remain 4-2 ahead. Delivering one good hold after another, the youngster held at love in game eight with an unreturned serve and sealed the deal with three winners at 5-4 to celebrate the title.