Tennis superstars Maria Sakkari and Stefanos Tsitsipas have made history, winning Greece’s first-ever Hopman Cup. Together they defeated the US team represented by Serena Williams and Frances Tiafoe.
For the first match of the day, Stefanos took on Frances Tiafoe of the United States. Tsitsipas won both of their previous meetings in straight sets. One break was all the Greek would need in the first set, as he took it 6-3. Tsitsipas then went up 3-1 in the second set, but the American would fight back and ultimately take it 7-6(3). In the third set, Tsitsipas would take control from the get-go, breaking Tiafoe in his first service game. He would hold on and take the set 6-3 to give Greece a 1-0 lead. Tsitsipas served 14 aces.
In the women's singles, Maria Sakkari versed American Serena Williams. Sakkari got off to a great start, going up 5-3 early on. However, the American would come back and take the first set 7-6(3). The Greek then went up 2-1 in the second set, but Williams would win five consecutive games to take it 6-2 and put the Americans on the board, leveling it at 1-1. Williams served an astonishing 13 aces, while Sakkari hit five aces and had 10 double faults.
With the score being 1-1, the mixed doubles match would decide the winner. The Greeks breezed through the first set, taking it 4-1. In the second set, the Americans would dominate, taking it 4-1. In the third set, the Greeks would convert on their third match point on Tiafoe’s serve to win 4-2. This victory marked the first one ever by a Greek team at the Hopman Cup, as Greece lost to Great Britain two days ago and also in their only other match back in 2002, against Italy.
To celebrate their win, as well as the ringing in of the 2019 New Year, the duo attended the Hopman Cup New Year’s Eve gala dinner.
A day before their matches, Maria and Stefanos also got up close and personal with the animals at the Caversham Wildlife Park.
Maria and Stefanos have a few days off before their next game against Switzerland on January 3rd. The Swiss won their opener against Great Britain, taking it 3-0 without dropping a set. They are the defending champions, represented once again by Belinda Bencic and Roger Federer.
by Andrew Stamas
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