Borna Coric had a fairy-tale run to the finals at the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati this past weekend, winning his first Masters 1000 event of his career and becoming the lowest-ranked champion in Masters 1000 history. In the finals, Coric defeated Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece in straight sets 7-6(0), 6-2.
Not only did the Croatian make ATP history, but he also showcased a picture-perfect road to the finals. He only dropped a set to the 22-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal in the second round and defeated three other Top 10 players on the ATP Tour – Canadian Félix Auger-Aliassime, Cameron Norrie of Great Britain, and Tsitsipas.
In the championship match, Coric came out a little slow and quickly found himself down 4-1 to the Greek superstar. The Croatian was able to regain his rhythm in the set, breaking Tsitsipas back in the seventh game and saving three break points in the eighth game. After both players held their remaining service games, Coric dominated the tiebreak, winning seven straight points to clinch the first set.
To start the second set, Coric was forced to fend off three break points in his opening service game. That was the only trouble he would face, as he soared past Tsitsipas 6-2 to take the championship crown.
This is the Croatian’s first title since 2018 at the Halle Open, when he defeated Roger Federer in a three-set thriller, ending the Swiss’ run as world No. 1 and becoming the youngest champion in tournament history at 21.