Tennis: Tennis-Berrettini says Sunday will be special for Italians


LONDON (Reuters) – Wimbledon finalist Matteo Berrettini says Italians should make sure they have a nice TV for what he promises to be a special Sunday for the sport-mad nation.

The 25-year-old will become the first Italian to play in a singles final at the All England Club when he takes on five-time champion Novak Djokovic on Centre Court.

A few hours later at Wembley Stadium, Italy take on England in a momentous Euro 2020 soccer final — a clash that has sent the home nation into euphoria.

“I will tell them to buy a nice TV if they don’t have one already because I think it’s going to be a special Sunday for all of us,” Berrettini said when asked about the seismic sporting Sunday in which he will play a leading role.

“It’s something crazy to believe for us, obviously let’s say tennis, because it’s never happened (before at Wimbledon). So it’s something that nobody expected — me in the first place.

“Then for football, because I mean, we didn’t qualify for the World Cup (in 2018), so after that the job that they did, how hard they worked, the effort that they put, I think they really deserve this final.”

Berrettini will be a huge underdog in his first Grand Slam final against the Serb who is playing his 30th.

The Euro 2020 final, however, looks too close to call.

“For Italian people in general, it’s going to be tough Sunday, no?” But I think we deserve it. It’s great day, great sport day. I’m really happy that together with football now (tennis) is one of the biggest sports in Italy.”

Despite soccer fever breaking out across London, seventh seed Berrettini says he will only be focussing on becoming the first Italian to hoist the Challenge Cup.

“Obviously I’m going to think first about mine. I think the schedule is going to come first. Then probably, if I have the chance, I’m going to watch them,” he said.

(Reporting by Martyn Herman, editing by Pritha Sarkar)

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