Stefanos Tsitsipas joins illustrious group with rare Monte Carlo Masters title defence
Stefanos Tsitsipas became just the sixth man to successfully defend a Monte Carlo Masters title in the Open Era this year, joining five former world number ones in doing so.
Not only that, but by downing Alejandro Davidovich Fokina in the final 6-3, 7-6 (7-3) he becomes the first man to successfully defend any Masters 1000 title since Rafael Nadal won the Canadian Masters back-to-back in 2018 and 2019.
Four of the other men to have won consecutive Monte Carlo titles since 1969 are the first ever ATP number one Ilie Nastase, who won three in a row from 1971 to 1973, Bjorn Borg who won in 1977 before winning 1979 and 1980, Thomas Muster who won in 1992 before 1995 and 1996, and Juan Carlos Ferrero, winning in 2002 and 2003.
Then, of course, there is Nadal, who has won in Monte Carlo a record 11 times including eight consecutively from 2005 to 2012, before winning three on the bounce from 2016 to 2018.
As mentioned, all five men have peaked at world number one, something Tsitsipas will be aiming for in the coming seasons as his current career-high sits at world number three.
Moreover, all five of Nastase, Borg, Muster, Ferrero and Nadal have at least one Roland Garros title to their name, totalling 22 altogether, though 13 of those are provided by Nadal.
Tsitsipas will be hoping to go one step further than he did last year at Roland Garros after falling to Novak Djokovic in the final after leading by two sets to love.
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