Passing The Torch: Sinner Becomes Youngest Men's Australian Open Finalist Since Djokovic

Passing The Torch: Sinner Becomes Youngest Men's Australian Open Finalist Since Djokovic

by Nurein Ahmed

Jannik Sinner dethroned Novak Djokovic as the king of Melbourne by ending the Serbian's remarkable 2,195-day undefeated streak at the Australian Open.

Sinner beat Djokovic 6-1, 6-2, 6-7, 6-3 in three hours and 26 minutes to progress into his first Grand Slam final. Having been so close in recent major tournaments, like losing to Carlos Alcaraz at the 2022 US Open and most recently to Djokovic at 2023 Wimbledon, he got his reward this fortnight.

The Italian has been the better player not just in Friday's blockbuster semifinal but during the entire tournament until this stage. He had not dropped a set en route to the last four, and had it not been for a nervy forehand shot on match point, that perfect run would still be intact.

Sinner joins Djokovic for a very prestigious record. At 22, he is the youngest men's finalist at the Australian Open since Djokovic himself back in 2008. The Serb was only 20 when he dethroned then-defending champion Roger Federer in straight sets in the semis.

He went on to clinch his first Grand Slam title by beating first-time finalist Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in four sets in the final. Sinner, who has picked up the baton from Djokovic, will hope for a stroke of good fortune. The job is far from done, as he still has to win one more match.

Unlike his Sunday opponent (one of Alexander Zverev or Daniil Medvedev), Sinner will play his first-ever Grand Slam final, which will be a huge moment for him, and it can be a completely different occasion.

For instance, Sinner played awesome tennis at the ATP Finals last season, winning all his matches until the championship match when he buckled under pressure and the weight of expectation.

While the general consensus is that he is the overwhelming favorite, his coaches, particularly Darren Cahill, will try to prepare him mentally for the match in the best possible manner to avoid falling into the same trap.


You may also like