Cincinnati, August 22: Borna Coric won his first ever ATP Masters 1000 title on Sunday (August 21) when he defeated world number seven Stefanos Tsitsipas 7-6 (7-0) 6-2 in the final of the Western & Southern Open.
Coric, who entered the tournament ranked 152nd in the world, put together a week of tennis he will never forget as he beat five consecutive top-20 opponents in Rafael Nadal, Roberto Bautista-Agut, Felix Auger-Aliassime, Cameron Norrie and finally Tsitsipas.
Tsitsipas looked likely to enjoy a comfortable first set when he raced to a 4-1 lead after breaking Coric's serve at the first opportunity, but the Croatian roared back to level the scores and force a tie-break after saving three more break points.
The momentum was with Coric from there as he cruised through the tie-break without dropping a point to take the opener and stun the world number seven.
Tsitsipas threatened to take the momentum straight back as he quickly took a love-to-40 lead against Coric's opening service game of the second set, but the 25-year-old in the second ATP Masters 1000 final of his career – and the first since Shanghai in 2018 – was on a mission, saving another three break points to stay in control.
Coric would save six of the seven total break points he faced in the contest, and he put an exclamation point on the best tournament of his career by breaking the Greek's serve twice to secure the win.
The stats indicate this was far from a fluke, as Coric was better both on serve – winning 69 per cent of his points compared to 57 per cent from Tsitsipas – and on return, creating 12 break points opportunities while Tsitsipas created seven.
With the win, and the 1000 ranking points, Coric will rise 123 places when the next rankings are released, up to 29th.