London: Stefanos Tsitsipas coasted past defending champion Alexander Zverev in straight sets to advance to the last four of the ATP Finals after Rafael Nadal came back from the dead to keep his title hopes alive.
The Greek tyro, 21, broke his big-serving German opponent three times in the Group Andre Agassi match to seal a 6-3, 6-2 win and advance to the semi-finals at London’s O2 Arena.
The straightforward victory, which took Tsitsipas’s head-to-head record against Zverev to 4-1, was in sharp contrast to the earlier match, in which Nadal produced an astonishing comeback to beat Daniil Medvedev.
The Spaniard was on the brink of defeat when facing a match point at 5-1 down in the deciding set but stormed back to win 6-7, 6-3, 7-6.
“Today is one of those days that one out of 1,000 you win and it happened today,” said a delighted Nadal, the top seed in London.
“I know from my personal experience how tough it is to close out matches, especially when you have two breaks in front and you lose the first one. From that moment I thought I can have a chance.”
Dominic Thiem has already secured one of the qualification spots in Group Bjorn Borg.