Stefanos Tsitsipas makes history in reaching Barcelona final

Tennis

Stefanos Tsitsipas makes history in reaching Barcelona final

Stefanos Tsitsipas makes history in reaching Barcelona final

JOSEP LAGO

AFP

The 19-year-old world number 63 became the first Greek player to reach an ATP Tour final since 1973 after a 7-5, 6-3 win over Pablo Carreño.

Barcelona

Stefanos Tsitsipas became the first Greek player to reach the final of an ATP Tour event since Nicholas Kalogeropulos in 1973 as the 19-year-old world number 63 upset the odds in Barcelona to knock out Pablo Carreño Busta, ranked 11, in the semi-finals 7-5, 6-3.

The previous youngest finalist at the Trofeo Conde de Godó was Rafa Nadal, who was 18 when he won the tournament for the first time in 2005.

Tsitsipas has been the revelation of the ATP 500 event in Barcelona this week, blasting his way to the final without dropping a set.

Against the more experienced Carreño Busta, the Greek’s powerful forehand had the Spaniard on the ropes from the outset and Tsitsipas broke in the second game of the opening set before assuming a 3-0 lead. Carreño reposnded in the sixth by breaking back to 4-2 before clawing his way to 5-5, saving a set point along the way.

Tsitsipas to face Nadal in final

But Tsitsipas was not be denied and held then broke to take the first set in 51 minutes.

In the second set both players held serve until the sixth when the Greek’s backhand started to cause Carreño problems and the 19-year-old broke and then held to carve out a 5-2 advantage that proved too much for the Spaniard to overhaul.

Tsitsipas will face 10-times Barcelona champion Nadal in Sunday's final after the world number one saw off David Goffin 6-4, 6-0 in Saturday's second semi-final.

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