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Stefanos Tsitsipas makes Rafael Nadal claim at Barcelona Open after two final defeats

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STEFANOS TSITSIPAS is preparing to play in the Barcelona Open after winning the Monte-Carlo Masters.

Greek tennis star Stefanos Tsitsipas is feeling confident as he begins his Barcelona Open campaign as the top seed amid defending champion Rafael Nadal’s absence. Nadal, who claimed an unprecedented 21st men’s singles Grand Slam title at the Australian Open, is currently on the comeback trail after suffering a rib stress fracture last month.

Greek tennis star Stefanos Tsitsipas is feeling confident as he begins his Barcelona Open campaign as the top seed amid defending champion Rafael Nadal’s absence. Nadal, who claimed an unprecedented 21st men’s singles Grand Slam title at the Australian Open, is currently on the comeback trail after suffering a rib stress fracture last month.

“Since he’s not there doesn’t mean it’s anything but an incredible competition. I have no strain to win this year. I think there are players, myself included, who can win the competition since we adjust well to this surface.

“I don’t think the move from Monaco to Barcelona will affect me. I think going from fast courts to slow courts is much more difficult. This morning, I have already trained so that it affects me as little as possible.”

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Tsitsipas, the 2019 ATP Finals champion, is looking solid so far to the 2022 mission subsequent to arriving at the Australian Open semi-finals and the Rotterdam last. He then safeguarded his Monte-Carlo Masters title the week before.

Only five active players – Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray and Daniil Medvedev – have reached No.2 in the world rankings and each of them went on to achieve world No.1 status. Tsitsipas is hoping to challenge at the top and finally claim a maiden Grand Slam.

“I’m always trying to bring the best I can from clay and adjust accordingly to the other surfaces,” Tsitsipas said. “I really want to be doing well on hard and grass this year, because I feel like I can really get a lot of points there.

“If I’m able to win matches with the same consistency I do on this surface, I think I have a big chance of finishing the year [in] the top two, which is a huge goal of mine to be finally there and belong in that special group of players.”

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