Italian tennis star Matteo Berrettini insisted he knew it would not be easy playing against 70th-ranked Jeremy Chardy.
Berrettini, seeded at No. 6, was made to work hard by Chardy but still he escaped with a straight-set win as he beat the Frenchman 7-6 (5) 7-6 (7) 6-3.
Berrettini and Chardy were playing against each other for the second time in their respective careers.
World No. 8 Berrettini now owns a 2-0 head-to-head record against Chardy.
“I think it was a good match. Before stepping on [court], I knew it would be really tough for so many reasons,” Berrettini said, per the ATP website. “First of all, because Jeremy is a great player. I know he can play really good, especially on these courts. They are really fast. He’s really tricky to play.”
Chardy had his chances against Berrettini
Berrettini saved two break points in the sixth game of the first set and also recovered from a 5-3 deficit in the tie-break to win the opener.
After losing a tight first set, Chardy responded well as he claimed the first break of the match in the third game to take a 2-1 second set lead.
Chardy had multiple chances to close out the second set but he blew a set point on his serve in the 10th game and also blew a set point in the tie-break.
Chardy paid the price for missing out on his chances as Berrettini stole the second set to take a two-set lead.
Berrettini then earned two breaks in the third set to book a straight-set win.
“I was ready to fight even if I lost those sets. I knew that my level was getting higher and higher, and obviously I tried to win all the sets that I played,” Berrettini said. “Then I think he felt that he had to win three sets in order to win the match, and that’s not easy.”