Matteo Berrettini made headlines when he appeared in the Wimbledon finals this year. Despite losing to world no. 1 Novak Djokovic, Berrettini had garnered the world’s attention. As a result, he ascended the ranking of world no. 7. The 25 year-old also made it to the fourth round of the Australian Open and quarterfinals of Roland Garros.
At the French Open, he became the first Italian man to reach the fourth round of every grand slam. His overall performance this year, which included title wins at Belgrade and London, helped him qualify for the 2021 ATP Finals to be held in Turin, Italy. Naturally, Berrettini is the crowd favourite.
The ATP Finals are the year-end championships for male tennis players. It is reserved only for the elite, by granting participation only to the top 8 singles and doubles players. Along with Daniil Medvedev, Alexander Zverev, and Hubert Hurkacz (whom he defeated in the Wimbledon semifinals), Berrettini is a part of the Red Group in the tournament.
“Italy deserved such an event” Matteo Berrettini on the ATP Finals being organized in Turin, and playing against the top players
In an interview conducted prior to the ATP Finals, Matteo Berrettini was questioned about the tournament being organized in his home country and the pressure he felt as the crowd favourite. “I feel the pressure, but it’s a good pressure. It’s so nice to be here. I know that the crowd is going to be on my side, and I really cannot wait to step on the court. Obviously on the other side of the net there are going to be the best players in the world, so it’s not going to be easy. But I am one of them, so that helps. I think it’s special. I think that the atmosphere is going to be special. The site and everything, how it’s organised is really nice. I think Italy deserved such an event. Hopefully it’s going to be also good on court” said Berrettini.
Berrettini, who did not display any solid performance last year, further added “It means a lot. I think it’s one of the best events that we have on Tour and to have the chance to have it in my home country is something unbelievable. At the beginning of the year, it obviously was a big goal, but it was too soon to even think about it. And then match by match, I think I earned it and I’m really happy to be here.”
“Between me and Jannik, there is a really good relationship”- Matteo Berrettini
Jannik Sinner has been one of the rising stars this year. He is also the first alternate at the 2021 ATP Finals. Speaking of his compatriot, Berrettini said “I think the more Italians there are on Tour, the better it is for everyone. For the crowd, for the fans and for us. Between me and Jannik, there is a really good relationship. We push each other to get better and he’s five years younger, I’m sure he’s going to qualify in the next years. But he had an incredible year, so it was really a few points a way, but I think this experience this year is going to help him in the next years.”
“I’d say Opelka” Matteo Berrettini on who he’d pick for a quintet
Matteo Berrettini was asked a cheeky question about who he’d form a quintet with. To this, he answered “Me, Zverev, Hurkacz and Medvedev. Who would I take to make the quintet? We need another one, so I’d say [Reilly] Opelka”.