Taylor Fritz defeated Felix Auger-Aliassime 7-6 (4), 6-7 (5), 6-2 in a knockout round-robin match to advance to the final four of the year-end tournament, the ATP Finals. In a winner-takes-all blockbuster match at the Pala Alpitour, America’s Taylor Fritz rose to the occasion to battle past Auger-Aliassime of Canada to seal his semi-final berth on debut at the prestigious year-end event in Turin. Fritz will face five-time champion Novak Djokovic in the semifinals on Saturday.
Both men started the match holding a 1-1 record in Green Group, eyeing to join Casper Ruud at the top two in the Green Group. Fritz won four games in a row to secure the third set. Fritz became the first American to reach the semifinals of the ATP Finals since Jack Sock in 2017. Sock ended up falling to Grigor Dimitrov in the semifinals. Before Sock, the last American to get this far was Andy Roddick in 2007, he fell to David Ferrer in the semifinals.
In front of an electrifying crowd, the American executed his aggressive game to great effect and handled the pressure in the crucial moments. Fritz fired 32 winners and outplayed the Canadian during the heavy-hitting exchanges in the deciding set. Fritz held his nerves to gain a crucial break at 3-2 in the decider to advance after battling it for two hours and 44 minutes.
Fritz impressed all with a complete performance. The 25-year-old American was clinical when stepping inside the baseline, winning 80 percent of the points when attacking. The eighth-seeded Fritz was so solid and strong on serve throughout the battle. He found the spots to dominate his opponent. The World No. 9 gave the Canadian few chances on return.
Fritz won 88 percent of his first-service points and saved all three break points he faced. The American roared in delight when he sealed victory on his first match point. Fritz capitalized well when he got the chances.
With the 45th tour-level win of the season, Fritz has improved to 2-0 in his ATP Head-to-Head record against Auger-Aliassime. Earlier this year, the American captured his maiden ATP Masters 1000 title at Indian Wells.
In an on-court interview, Fritz admitted that from possibly not even qualifying to now being in the semis feels great and it is huge. The American felt like he was going to play well here. Fritz said that he always likes to play his best tennis against the best players.