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Tiafoe beats Tsitsipas to give Team World 1st Laver Cup win – Metro US

Tiafoe beats Tsitsipas to give Team World 1st Laver Cup win

Britain Tennis Laver Cup
Team World’s Frances Tiafoe celebrates after winning the singles tennis match against Team Europe’s Stefanos Tsitsipas on the third day of the Laver Cup tennis tournament at the O2 arena in London, Sunday, Sept. 25, 2022. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

LONDON (AP) — Frances Tiafoe staved off four match points to beat Stefanos Tsitsipas 1-6, 7-6 (11), 10-8 on Sunday and clinched victory in the Laver Cup for Team World over Roger Federer’s Team Europe for the first time.

Tiafoe, a 24-year-old American, performed with the same crunch-time success and wide-smiling showmanship he displayed en route to his first Grand Slam semifinal at the U.S. Open this month.

The victory over 2021 French Open runner-up Tsitsipas allowed the group of 20-somethings on Team World to go up 13-8 in the three-day competition against Team Europe, which in addition to Federerthe 20-time major champion who just retired — featured Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray.

Djokovic had wins in singles and doubles Saturday to put Team Europe up 8-4. Sunday’s matches were worth three points each, with the first squad to 13 earning the trophy named for Rod Laver, the only man to win the calendar-year Grand Slam twice.

Team World took the lead on the final day at the O2 Arena, thanks to a pair of victories by Felix Auger-Aliassime, a 22-year-old from Canada. He defeated 21-time Grand Slam champion Djokovic 6-3, 7-6 (3), after partnering with Jack Sock to edge Murray and Matteo Berrettini 2-6, 6-3, 10-8 in doubles.

Team Europe came into the week having won all four previous editions of the Laver Cup, which was founded by Federer’s management company.

This one served as a celebration of the 41-year-old Swiss star’s career. His final match before retirement came Friday night, when he and Nadal lost in doubles to Tiafoe and Sock.

On Sunday, Tiafoe was a single point from losing to Tsitsipas four times in their second-set tiebreaker. On the first, at 6-5, Tsitsipas netted a forehand to close a 22-stroke exchange. Tiafoe erased the second, at 9-8, with a volley winner. And Tsitsipas sailed backhands long on each of his last two chances to close it out, at 10-9 and 11-10.

Tiafoe went a record 8-0 in tiebreakers at Flushing Meadows this month and was just as resilient in the big moments this time. When Tsitsipas put a forehand into the net to end the match — and the competition — Tiafoe dropped his racket, then fell to his back on the court, where his teammates piled on top of him.


More AP tennis: https://apnews.com/hub/tennis and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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