Matteo Berrettini clinches spot at Nitto ATP Finals: I hope Italy is proud

Italian tennis star Matteo Berrettini has booked a place af the Nitto ATP Finals.

Berrettini, 25, is set to make his second appearance at the prestigious season-ending event. 

Berrettini, who is enjoying a career-high ranking of No. 7 in the world, made his Nitto ATP Finals debut in 2019 while the event was taking place in London. 

After the Nitto ATP Finals relocated to Turin, Berrettini was extremely motivated to clinch a spot at the tournament. 

“My words aren’t going to describe the happiness I feel in my heart,” said Berrettini, per the Nitto ATP Finals website. “2020 was a tough year for me on and off the court. Here I am about to play my second [Nitto ATP] Finals and I can’t believe it. I always have to remember where I started. I didn’t dream about this, because it was so big, but now it’s happening. I want to do my best.

“When they were telling me in 2019 that the Finals would be in Turin, I remember the mayor of the city told me, ‘I’ll see you in Turin’. And I was, ‘Yeah, right’. Then I qualified for London and now I am qualifying for Turin. I really cannot describe how happy I am. I hope the country is really proud of me.”

Berrettini beat Alexei Popyrin in Vienna 

On Monday, third-seeded Berrettini saw off qualifier Popyrin 7-6 (3))/3 to reach the Vienna round-of-16 and become the sixth player to clinch a spot at the Nitto ATP Finals.

Berrettini failed to convert the lone break point of the first set in the 11th game and the set had to be resolved in a tie-break.

In the first set tie-break, Berrettini came up big as he realized his first set point to win a tight opener. 

After winning a tight first set, Berrettini claimed the first break of the match in the sixth game to take a 4-2 lead before serving out for the match in the ninth game.