Stefanos Tsitsipas should not be discouraged by his loss against Novak Djokovic in the final of the 2023 Australian Open, opined leading tennis journalist Steve Flink. The American journalist felt that the Greek player put out a good performance against one of the best in the sport.
Tsitsipas earned a place in the final of the Grand Slam Down Under for the first time in his career, beating the likes of Jannik Sinner and Karen Khachanov on the way. The Greek played Djokovic in the final, facing off against the most experienced and winning player on Aussie soil for the title.
Tsitsipas fought hard to make the Djokovic uncomfortable during the match and pushed two sets into the tie break. Despite the hard work, the 24-year-old had to suffer a defeat in straight sets as the score read 6-3, 7-6 (4), 7-6 (5) in favor of the Serb.
However, Flink expressed that there is nothing for Tsitsipas to feel “dismayed” about, appreciating the player for whatever he has achieved over the years.
“I don’t think he comes away discouraged or dismayed. He even said it afterwards about Novak setting the agenda in men’s tennis and really sort of raising the bar for everybody and he’s right. But, he shouldn’t be discouraged,” said the journalist in a conversation during the ‘Court-side with Bellinson Tennis’ podcast.
The American recalled other big moments in Tsitsipas’ career.“
This is a guy that had beaten Roger [Federer] in ’19 in Australia on his way to the semis, came back from two sets down to Rafa [Nadal] a couple of years ago to get to the semis again,” he added.
Flink acknowledged that the World No. 3 was uneasy with his approach during the first set. However, he felt that the criticism Stefanos Tsitsipas received for his performance in the latter stages was unfair.
“Stefanos was a bit apprehensive in the first set and Novak jumped on him and got that early break. Some people criticized him by the way, thought he was too cautious, waiting for maybe some help from Novak and I thought that was a little bit unfair,” he added.
“There’s more versatility, there’s more capacity to come forward” – Tennis journalist on Stefanos Tsitsipas’ game
Stefanos Tsitsipas’ game in terms of versatility and his attacking approach has improved tremendously off-late, according to tennis journalist Steve Flink.
Speaking on the podcast, Flink observed that although the Australian Open runner-up can continue to work on his game, he has improved overall.
“Obviously with his game, there are certain things he can do. There’s more versatility, there’s more capacity to come forward and attack and he’s quite a good warrior. His serve is highly under-rated,” he asserted.
Flink pointed out that the Greek fared considerably well in the final, breaking Djokovic’s serve twice.
“Djokovic broke him two times in three sets as well as he returned two breaks in three sets… and that says a lot for Tsitsipas,” he added.