No repeat for Matteo Berrettini: Squashed at BOSS Open in first round

(Photo by Christian Kaspar-Bartke/Getty Images)
(Photo by Christian Kaspar-Bartke/Getty Images) /

In the first round of the BOSS Open in Stuttgart, Germany, reigning champion Matteo Berrettini got drubbed. To make matters worse, it was by a good friend. Fellow Italian Lorenzo Sonego sent Berrettini home (or wherever Berrettini is going to play next) 6-1 6-2 in a match with a final result that still made it look better than it was.

Berrettini had yet to lose in the three times he had played in the tournament and won in 2022. But Sonego used excellent returns and shot-making into a match that might have been the best Sonego had ever played. Sonego was almost technically perfect.

Sonego only had 3 aces but landed 81 percent of his first serves and won 74 percent of those points. Berrettini never broke Sonego even though Berrettini had as many break point chances – six – as Sonego did. But Sonego converted four of his six break points into wins.

Matteo Berrettini gets smacked down at the BOSS Open

If anyone was watching it might appear to them that Sonego was playing on his best surface, but Sonego had never played on grass before. Afterward, Sonego stated, “Today I played my best tennis. This is my first tournament on grass, my first match, and I played really well. I’m really happy about that.” And he should not only be happy but likely the happiest he has ever felt after a match because never before has he beat down a player of the ilk of Berrettini the way he did on Monday.

Sonego also added, almost harshly, that Berrettini is his “best friend on tour and it’s tough to see him like that. I hope the best for him in the next tournament.” The “tough to see” part is the best because Sonego literally made Berrettini look so bad. And I am sure Sonego wishes Berrettini the best in the next tournament unless, of course, Sonego plays Berrettini again.

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Tomorrow in Stuttgart, the always fun and maddening Nick Kyrgios will play. So if you want something to do to get away from real life a bit, Kyrgios makes for good escapism. As long as you are someone in his box and he is yelling at you, that is.