Sinner holds off valiant Rune to reach Monte-Carlo semis

Jannik Sinner won against Holger Rune 6-4, 6-7 (6), 6-3 on Friday afternoon. He’ll face Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas, the No 12 seed, in the next round

Jannik Sinner and Holger Rune Antoine Couvercelle / Panoramic
Rolex Monte-Carlo Masters •Quarter-final • completed
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Jannik Sinner came through his toughest test of the week so far as he held off Dane Holger Rune, the No 7 seed, 6-4, 6-7 (6), 6-3 to reach the semi-finals at the Monte-Carlo Country Club on Friday.

Sinner, ranked No 2, will face Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas, the No 12 seed, next.

Sinner had two match points in the second-set tiebreak but Rune, who was warned for unsportsmanlike conduct for gesturing to the crowd to be quiet, hit back and took it to a third.

Sinner, the Australian Open champion, got the vital break for 5-3 in the third and served out, gaining revenge for his defeat by Rune in the semi-finals last year.

“It took a lot,” Sinner said. “He’s not easy to play, especially on these kinds of occasions. I’m happy I won but also because I stepped up my level. I’m excited now about tomorrow’s match.

Brutal hitting from both men

Sinner won the first set pretty handily, the effects of Rune’s victory over Grigor Dimitrov (in a final-set tiebreak) seemingly having an impact.

But the Dane began to be more and more aggressive on court, taking time away from Sinner. The Italian had two chances to break from 0-40 but Rune escaped them both, the second after an altercation with umpire Danien Dumusois, who awarded him an unsportsmanlike conduct warning for gesturing with his hands for the crowd to be quiet.

That seemed to galvanise Rune and from 6-4 down in the tiebreak, he saved both match points and snatched the tiebreak – his ninth in a row – to take it to a third.

Sinner remained unflappable, though, and at 4-3, he finally got the break he needed thanks to some thunderous groundstrokes. He served out with aplomb to seal victory and take his place in the last four.

The 22-year-old Italian beat American Sebastian Korda (6-1, 6-2) and German Jan-Lennard Struff (6-4, 6-2) ahead of his victory.

In the previous rounds of the Monte-Carlo tournament, Rune, ranked No 7, won against Indian qualifier Sumit Nagal (6-3, 3-6, 6-2) and edged out Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov, the No 9 seed (7-6 (9), 3-6, 7-6 (2)).

Monte-Carlo Masters 1000, other quarter-finals results (Monte-Carlo Country Club, clay, EUR 5.950.575, most recent results first):

  • Ugo Humbert vs. Casper Ruud
  • Novak Djokovic vs. Alex De Minaur
  • Stefanos Tsitsipas beat Karen Khachanov (15): 6-4, 6-2

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