Masters, when the final is a rematch: the last time it was Djokovic and Zverev’s turn

On ten occasions the “replay” of the group match has changed the winner: today in Turin Medvedev could become the tenth player to repeat the success

To decide the Nitto ATP Finals in Turin 2021 will be the match between Daniil Medvedev and Alexander Zverev, already played in the round robin and ended with the success of the Russian 6-3 6-7 7-6. It is the twentieth time that the Masters offers a repeat and in the previous 19 the player who had triumphed the first time has won 9 times, 10 times instead there has been a radical change in the result.

Orantes, McEnroe e Lendl

The first game repeated twice in the same edition of the Masters was the one played in Stockholm in 1976 between Manolo Orantes and Wojtek Fibak. The Pole won the first game of the round robin by beating the Spaniard 7-5 7-6, but then in the final Orantes recovered and won 5-7 6-2 0-6 7-6 6-1. Two years later, in January 1979, at Madison Square Garden, a double challenge between the scion John McEnroe and the veteran Arthur Ashe: the nineteen year old left-handed won the first challenge easily (6-3 6-1), but in the final he had to cancel two matches point ticking it only for 6-7 6-3 7-5. Again match points canceled in 1981 in the double challenge won by Ivan Lendl over Vitas Gerulaitis: the champion from Ostrava, risking his neck, won the first challenge of the group for 4-6 7-5 6-2 and then in the final he was forced to save the match ball in the tie break of the third set the fearless Gerulaitis, forced to surrender 6-7 2-6 7-6 6-2 6-4.

Edberg, Becker and the Americans

In 1987 the semifinals no longer included the challenge between the first of one group and the second of the other and so Ivan Lendl won twice against Brad Gilbert: the first in the round robin with a double 6-2 and then in the semifinal for 6- 2 6-4. In 1989 a double challenge between Stefan Edberg and Boris Becker: the German one in the group (6-1 6-4), the Swedish the final for 4-6 7-6 6-3 6-1 in 3 hours and 3 minutes. The following year, in the first edition in Frankfurt, the same speech between Stefan Edberg and Andre Agassi: to the Swede the victory in the round robin for 7-6 4-6 7-6, to the Kid in Las Vegas the final for 5-7 7 -6 7-5 6-2. From 1990 we jump to 1994 to find the double challenge between Pete Sampras and Boris Becker: the German wins the first challenge 7-5 7-6, the American the final 4-6 6-3 7-5 6-4 . Again Boris Becker and Pete Sampras absolute protagonists of the 1996 Hannover Masters. Becker won the first challenge with two tie breaks, but Sampras the final 3-6 7-6 7-6 6-7 6-4, still considered today the best game in Masters history. To decide the challenge, the only break suffered by Becker in the penultimate game of the match. In 1999 Sampras again protagonist: in the race towards his fifth and last Masters, Pistol Pete lost against Agassi in the round robin with a double 6-2, but won in the final 6-1 7-5 6-4.

In this millennium

In 2000 Agassi beat Kuerten on the opening day (4-6 6-4 6-3), but in the final Kuerten overtook Agassi with a triple 6-4. The following year in 2001 Hewitt overtook Grosjean in the inaugural match for 3-6 6-2 6-3 and then beat him again in the final 6-3 6-3 6-4. In 2003 Federer’s double victory over Agassi: in the first day (6-7 6-3 7-6) and in the final (6-3 6-0 6-4). In 2004 Federer’s double victory over Hewitt (6-3 6-4 in the group, 6-3 6-2 in the final). In 2005 Federer overtook Nalbandian in the inaugural match of the tournament (6-3 2-6 6-4) but in the final it was the Argentine who got the better of 6-7 6-7 6-2 6-1 7-6. In 2008 Djokovic double victory over Davydenko: 7-6 0-6 7-5 in the round robin, 6-1 7-5 in the final. In 2011 Federer’s double victory over Tsonga: 6-2 2-6 6-4 on the first day, 6-3 6-7 6-3 the last in the final. In 2015 Federer beats Djokovic in the group 7-5 6-2, but he lost us in the final 6-3 6-4. In 2017 Dimitrov’s double success over Goffin (6-0 6-2 in the group, 7-5 4-6 6-3 in the final) and finally in 2018 Djokovic-Zverev compete in the group (victory of the Serbian 6-4 6 -1) and in the final (success of the German 6-4 6-3).

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Masters, when the final is a rematch: the last time it was Djokovic and Zverev’s turn

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