The NextGen ATP Finals held in Milan from the 6th to the 10th of November is intended to showcase the next generation, of tennis talent, expected to overthrow the aging dominance off the big three and assume their rightful, God-anointed place in the annals of tennis.
Stefanos Tsitsipas is the highest ranking player in the event.
The highest ranking and the top seed, Stefanos Tsitsipas, has been bundled with Francis Tiafoe, Jaume Munar, and Hubert Hurkacz in Group A; and the second-seeded Alex de Minaur has drawn Andrey Rublev, Taylor Fritz, and Liam Caruana in Group B. All players, except Liam Caruana, are ranked 80 or better in the Nitto ATP rankings.
It makes little sense for Stefanos to be playing this event.
It makes little sense for Stefanos to be playing this event. He has little to gain but everything to lose at this event. Stefanos, in fact, is being hailed as the next coming of Roger Federer. Luckily, for him, he has come unscathed in his first round-robin encounter against the 7th seeded Jaume Munar. That match, against the world number 80, was won in a hard-fought 4-3 (5), 4-3 (3), 3-4 (4), 4-2 battle, and is indicative of how tough it could get against the 44 ranked, and more accomplished and experienced Francis Tiafoe who beat the 79 ranked Hubert Hurkacz 4-1, 4-2, 2-4, 4-3 (10) in another tightly contested match.
Why is Liam Caruana playing the event?
Elsewhere, in Group B, the 33 ranked Alex de Minaur sailed to an easy 4-1, 4-1, 4-2 win over Liam Caruana, and Andrey Rublev battled past Taylor Fritz in five. The wild card Liam Caruana, an unknown ranked 622, with a career-high 375, in the ATP takes away from the gravitas of the event. The 20 years old Liam is yet to play his first big-boy slam or beat a player ranked in the top 100. The question that begs an answer, therefore, is, “why is Liam Caruana playing the event?”
Will the rankings hold?
If the rankings hold, we expect Stefanos Tsitsipas to meet Andrey Rublev and Alex de Minaur to play Francis Tiafoe in the semis. The rankings, however, rarely hold and therefore we watch and follow the sport.