“I would consider that my home slam,” said Stefanos Tsitsipas.

Embed from Getty Images

For the third time in his career, Stefanos Tsitsipas will participate in the Australian Open quarterfinals (2019, 2021, 2022). In a thrilling match on Sunday, the Greek prevailed over Jannik Sinner and won the match 6-4, 6-4, 3-6, 4-6, 6-3.

Jiri Lehecka will be up against the third seed, who is hoping to get to the semifinals. Tsitsipas is aiming to complete his first Grand Slam after making it to his first Grand Slam final at Roland Garros 2021. If he maintains the quality of play he shown against the Italian in the closing stretch of the match, when things had become more challenging, the Australian Open offers him a good opportunity to accomplish so at the age of 24.

Sinner entered the court to attempt to turn the tide against the Greek, whom he defeated for the only time in 2020, on the clay of the Foro Italico in Rome, with the score in the ATP Head2Head standing at 4-1 for Tsitsipas. For the Italian, it was a difficult task.

Tsitsipas defeated Sinner to take a 2-0 lead in the match, playing great tennis that occasionally bordered on perfection to eliminate Sinner‘s choices as the World No. 16 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings.

Sinner persevered in response, and by picking up a few gears, he was able to force the fifth set while also taking the third and fourth, which altered the duel’s direction. At the last minute, Tsitsipas came back to play at his peak, stopping Sinner‘s momentum and winning the match, shut his door to the quarterfinals of Melbourne’s first Grand Slam of the year.

A fantastic contest that elevates the Greek to one of the title favorites.

Understandably, Tsitsipas was happy with his level of performance.

According to Stefanos Tsitsipas, the Australian Open holds a particular place in his heart.

“The feeling you get when you can go around and sense that is extremely pleasant. Given that Melbourne is the second-largest city with the largest Greek community after Athens, it is unquestionably my home slam. It would qualify as my home run.

The British have Wimbledon, the French have Roland Garros, while the Americans have US Open. It’s the Australian Open for me. Another benefit is that I can see Greek faces and people speaking Greek everywhere I turn. Of course, having that sort of experience and connecting even more with the local culture is crucial when you’re distant from home.”