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Matteo Berrettini aiming high in 2023: “I see my chances of winning a slam”

The Italian was ranked No 6 in 2022 before a hand operation interrupted his progress

After an up and down year which saw him win two titles but be derailed by a hand injury that required surgery, Italian Matteo Berrettini is aiming high in 2023.

“I see my chances of winning a slam,” he told Eurosport. “I was not that far from doing it in previous years. That’s for sure a goal.

“Obviously, I had to think about my health first because if there isn’t that it’s tough to play. But once you get there and you’re feeling good, then obviously the goal is to win a Grand Slam, to win a Masters 1000, to have long runs in the most important tournaments in the world and I think I can do that.”

Berrettini ended the year ranked 16, having reached No 6 in the world after making the semi-finals at the Australian Open. Soon after he announced he would have hand surgery but he still won two events on his return, in Stuttgart and London’s Queen’s Club, only to miss Wimbledon after testing positive for Covid-19 on the eve of the event.

Confidence still there despite injury absence

Despite the up and down year, the 26-year-old has not lost his confidence. The runner-up at Wimbledon in 2021, he believes he belongs at the top.

“I consider myself as one of them [top players],” he said. “I remember playing (Carlos) Alcaraz at the beginning of the year and I felt that he is a great player and he had great potential. I didn’t expect him to go up that fast but he deserved it so good for him,” he said.

“At the same time, Novak (Djokovic) and Rafa (Nadal) are always Novak and Rafa. They’re always going to be there.

“Age-wise I’m in the middle of them, but I feel that I can get back to that level, and obviously the goal is to get back in the top 10 and see from there.

“Last year, before the hand surgery I was at my best ranking. I was six in the world. I know that it is my level and I know I can get back there. Why not even better?”

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