Cyprus Mail
French Open Sport Tennis

Sinner and Musetti aim to shake up old guard at French Open

french open
Jannick Sinner, Next Gen champion in 2019, faces 13-time champion Rafa Nadal

Italian teenagers Jannik Sinner and Lorenzo Musetti will lead the next generation’s charge at the French Open on Monday when they get a crack at serial winners Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic respectively, in the round of 16.

Sinner, Next Gen champion in 2019, made his Grand Slam breakthrough with a run to last year’s quarter-finals at Roland Garros and is back at the business end of the tournament.

This time, he is joined by fellow 19-year-old Musetti, who is making his Grand Slam main draw debut.

Former world number one Carlos Moya, who is also Nadal’s coach, said fans should be excited about the contrasting styles the Italians bring on to the court.

“Musetti is very different to Sinner, nothing like him,” Moya told the ATP Tour’s website. He’s more of an artist, the other a machine, with a very fast rhythm.

“Sinner is very cold, very calculated, in a good way.

“They’re very different players, but I’m sure they’ll play in Grand Slam finals in the future.”

Nadal, the 13-time Roland Garros champion, is well aware of Sinner’s qualities, having played him in the quarter-finals last year, when the Italian had a set point — the only man to get close to getting a set off the Spanish great.

Musetti reached the last-16 with his first five-set win over fellow Italian Marco Cecchinato, the man who defeated Djokovic at Roland Garros in 2018.

Although Djokovic is yet to drop a set in the tournament, Musetti is hoping to serve up a few surprises on Court Philippe-Chatrier.

“We practiced a lot with Djokovic together, so we know each other a little bit,” Musetti said. “Never played him and it’s gonna be the first time.

“For sure there is going to be a little bit of tension, but I think it’s what I’m working for since my childhood. All the sacrifice and hard work I did in the childhood becomes reality now. So I’m just enjoying the moment.”

In the women’s draw, American trio of Coco Gauff, Sofia Kenin and Sloane Stephens will bid for quarter-final spots after compatriot and 23-times Grand Slam singles winner Serena Williams bowed out on Sunday.

Order of Play
COURT PHILIPPE CHATRIER (1000 GMT)

25-Ons Jabeur (Tunisia) v 24-Coco Gauff (U.S.)

1-Novak Djokovic (Serbia) v Lorenzo Musetti (Italy)

3-Rafa Nadal (Spain) v 18-Jannik Sinner (Italy)

Marta Kostyuk (Ukraine) v 8-Iga Swiatek (Poland)

COURT SUZANNE LENGLEN

Sloane Stephens (U.S.) v Barbora Krejcikova (Czech Republic)

10-Diego Schwartzman (Argentina) v Jan-Lennard Struff (Germany)

4-Sofia Kenin (U.S.) v 17-Maria Sakkari (Greece)

Related Posts

Chelsea lose top spot after 3-3 draw at Zenit

Reuters News Service

Brazil soccer legend Pele hospitalized again to treat colon tumor

Reuters News Service

Eight Tottenham players and five staff members positive for Covid, Conte says

Press Association

Changes made to Abu Dhabi circuit ahead of F1 season finale

Press Association

Serena out of Australian Open, Djokovic on entry list

Reuters News Service

No team will want to draw Ajax in Champions League, says coach

Reuters News Service