Sinner, Pospisil to square off in Sofia Open title match

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Either Jannik Sinner or Vasek Pospisil will win his first ATP title on Saturday in Sofia. Pospisil joined Sinner in the final by beating Richard Gasquet in three sets on Friday night.

Sofia Open, semi-finals

Sinner d. Mannarino 6-3, 7-5
Pospisil d. Gasquet 6-7(6), 6-2, 6-0

  • Key info: Sinner is through to the first ATP final of his career.
  • You will also learn: There is guaranteed to be a first-time ATP title winner on Saturday.
  • Why read this story: It is a big moment in the careers for each of the two Sofia finalists.

Jannik Sinner and Vasek Pospisil played their way into the Sofia Open final on Saturday afternoon. Sinner continued his hot streak by beating Nur-Sultan runner-up Adrian Mannarino, while Pospisil recovered from a set down to defeat Richard Gasquet.

Sinner through to first final

Friday’s first semi-final was a showdown between two players in stellar form. Sinner was a recent French Open quarter-finalist, while Mannarino followed up his Nur-Sultan performance with a third-round showing at the Rolex Paris Masters. Something had to give in this one, and it was Sinner’s firepower on an indoor hard court that proved to be the difference. In fact, the 19-year-old American did not get broken a single time — saving all three break points he faced. He fired nine aces to Mannarino’s one and won 81 percent of his first-serve points.

Sinner becomes the youngest Italian to ever reach an ATP final.

“It is nice to be in the final, playing one more match which, for me is the most important,” Sinner said. “Today I felt quite well on court and it is good for me playing my first final this year. I am looking forward to tomorrow.”

First-time champion guaranteed

There is guaranteed to be a first-time champion on Saturday, because Pospisil has also never won an ATP title. The 30-year-old Canadian has played in two finals, placing runner-up in Washington, D.C. in 2014 and in Montpellier earlier this season. He has given himself a third chance thanks to his comeback victory over Gasquet on Friday.

It was the Frenchman who survived tough first set, but a back injury was already starting to plague him even in the opening frame of play and it continued to get worse throughout the second and third. He won only two more games the entire rest of the way, including none in the third.

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