Matteo Berrettini’s return from hand surgery could not have been written better. He is into the final of the Stuttgart Open where he will face a resurgent Andy Murray.
Matteo Berrettini had a close semi-final against Germany’s Oscar Otte, edging the match with two tie-break sets 7-6(7), 7-6(5) to reach his first tour-level final of the season.
Berrettini missed the whole of the clay season after being sidelined with a right hand injury in March. He had to undergo surgery. However, the second seed has found his best level, serving well and dictating on his forehand to reach a fourth tour-level final on grass.
In a tight clash, the world no. 10 served 18 aces, winning 84% (41/49) of his first-serve points. Berrettini also saved one set point at 6/7 in the first-set tie-break. He eventually advanced after one hour and 48 minutes.
“I am really happy. Arriving at the tournament, that was the goal [to reach the final],” Berrettini said. “From thinking about it and actually making it is a big difference. I am happy I am here and have another chance to play another final after months without playing and after the first big surgery in my career.
“This means this is my level and I have proved once again I am comfortable at this level and on this surface. I really like it here at Stuttgart.”
Grass courts suit both players
With his victory, Berrettini has extended his perfect record to 8-0 at the ATP 250 grass-court event. He lifted the trophy on his debut in 2019. The 26-year-old, who is 27-6 on grass in his career, will face former World No. 1 Andy Murray on Sunday.
Alongside the Stuttgart Open, the five-time tour-level champion captured the crown at the Cinch Championships in London last year, before he advanced to his maiden Grand Slam final at Wimbledon, losing to Novak Djokovic. Murray won the Wimbledon title in 2013 and 2016.