Rising Italian star Jannik Sinner admitted it wasn’t easy playing against rising Russian Aslan Karatsev in Lyon.
Sinner, seeded at No. 6, was handed a tough draw in Lyon as he had to face Australian Open semifinalist Karatsev.
Sinner, who is enjoying a career-high ranking of No. 17 in the world, made a bad start to the match but he recovered to beat Karatsev 0-6 6-3 6-4.
Sinner and Karatsev also met earlier this year at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships.
Back then, Karatsev beat Sinner in the quarterfinal and ended up winning the tournament.
“It was tough,” Sinner said, per the ATP website. “He is a great player, especially this year with some big results. I dug deep today and I am happy to have won today. It’s definitely good to have the support of the crowd in order to come back from Aslan’s fast start.”
Sinner pulled off a comeback against Karatsev
Karatsev made the best possible start to the match, having broken Sinner three times to win the opener without a dropped game.
After not winning a single game in the first set, Sinner started the second set with back-to-back breaks as he took a 4-0 lead.
Karatsev got one break back in the fifth game but Sinner served out for the set in the ninth game.
In the third set, Sinner broke Karatsev in the ninth game, before serving out for the match in the following game.
Elsewhere, Sinner’s fellow compatriot Lorenzo Musetti also claimed a win as he beat Sebastian Korda 6-3 1-6 6-4.
Musetti easily lost the second set but he regrouped in the third set and managed to escape with a win.
“I lost my focus and he won the second set easily,” said Musetti. “I started the third set well with a break up, but then Sebi came back and he was playing really well. I played with my heart and my body. I am really proud of myself.”