Top seeds nipped!

Updated: Jan 04, 2020, 12:49 IST | AFP | Sydney

World No. 6 Tsitsipas and seventh ranked Zverev stunned on Day One; Germany, Greece begin inaugural ATP Cup with defeats in opening ties

Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece returns to Denis Shapovalov of Canada during Day One of the ATP Cup in Brisbane, Australia yesterday. Pic/Getty Images
Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece returns to Denis Shapovalov of Canada during Day One of the ATP Cup in Brisbane, Australia yesterday. Pic/Getty Images

Sydney: Alexander Zverev and Stefanos Tsitsipas both crashed to defeat in their first matches of the year Friday as day one of the inaugural ATP Cup sprung some big upsets. The German World No. 7 was stunned by Australia's fast-improving Alex de Minaur, who rallied from a set and 4-2 down to win 4-6, 7-6 (7/3), 6-2. Greek star Tsitsipas, who won the 2019 season-ending ATP Finals in London and is now ranked six, slumped to a 7-6 (8-6), 7-6 (7/4) loss to young Canadian Denis Shapovalov. It led to both Germany and Greece being defeated in their opening ties at the 24-nation event, where the countries are split into six groups across Sydney, Brisbane and Perth.

The top eight from the round robin go onto the knockout phase in Sydney before one is eventually crowned the winner.

Norway beat USA

Along with Australia and Canada, Belgium also won, sweeping Moldova 3-0, while tennis minnows Norway pulled off a big 2-1 upset against the United States. Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic make their debut today, for Spain in Perth and Serbia in Brisbane respectively. "It's definitely up there," said de Minaur in Brisbane, when asked how the victory ranked in his career.

"This one feels very good. "I have a great team. My captain, my coach were all making sure I stayed in the moment and told me I would have chances." Earlier, Nick Kyrgios beat Jan-Lennard Struff 6-4, 7-6 (7/4). "First game, first match of the year is always going to be tough," said Kyrgios.

Moldova anthem gaffe

Meanwhile, ATP Cup organisers were left red-faced by playing the Romanian anthem for a player from Moldova. The embarrassing gaffe occurred ahead of the opening singles tie in Sydney of the new team event as Moldova's Alexander Cozbinov faced Belgium's Steve Darcis.

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