Stefanos Tsitsipas has lost his last nine matches against Novak Djokovic dating back to October 2019 – a time before COVID-19 was a thing.
Despite rising to as high as world No.3, Tsitsipas hasn’t managed to shake his Djokovic curse and it’s not going to happen in the Australian Open 2023 final on Sunday night.
The ‘Greek Adonis’ is an extremely likeable character that actually defeated the Serbian superstar in two of their first three battles – with two three-set wins through 2018-19.
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But since that early success, Tsitsipas has been destroyed regularly by Djokovic, including in both their meetings at Grand Slams – with one being the Greek’s only Grand Slam final to date.
Both of their matches at majors came at the French Open, first Djokovic defeating Tsitsipas in five sets in the 2020 semi-final, before eclipsing him in the 2021 final, as the Greek crumbled after leading two-sets-to-love.
And there is going to be another horror chapter written in his story with Djokovic after their match at Rod Laver Arena on Sunday night.
There is no doubt Tsitsipas is going to win Grand Slams throughout his career, but it isn’t going to happen with the current form of the two players.
Djokovic is simply laser-focused on his mission to win the Australian Open title after his deportation last year – regardless of the real or fake injury to his hamstring.
The Serbian has absolutely crushed several top players including Grigor Dimitrov, Alex de Minaur, Andrey Rublev and Tommy Paul, all ruthlessly in three sets playing arguably some of his best tennis.
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Tsitsipas presents more of a challenge than the aforementioned opponents but to put it simply, no current player is capable of stopping Djokovic winning this year’s Australian Open title.
The Greek has played some excellent tennis on his way to the final, and will have the support of the adoring Australian crowd, but his propensity to have lapses during matches will ultimately be fatal.
Against Jannik Sinner in the fourth round, Tsitsipas lost his way for two sets after leading two-sets-to-love and he arguably would have been beaten by a more experienced player than the Italian.
In the semi-final versus Karen Khachanov, Tsitsipas was more clinical but again lost concentration when trying to close out the match in straight sets, and ultimately dropped the third set before recovering to win the match in four.
Any such lapse against Djokovic will prove costly and the Greek hasn’t yet shown he is capable of maintaining his composure throughout a blockbuster contest.
Tsitsipas will have a long, fruitful career full of majors success, but the current version of himself is not capable of beating the Djokovic we have seen at Melbourne Park over the last two weeks.