On Sunday, Novak Djokovic won his seventh ATP Finals championship, defeating local hero Jannik Sinner 6-3, 6-3 in Turin.
After depriving Italian Sinner a victory on home soil, world number one Djokovic climbs over of retired great Roger Federer in victories at the season-ending tournament.
Djokovic entered the Finals having won three Grand Slams this year, bringing his total to an all-time high of 24, as well as his 40th Masters 1000 title.
And he has capped off a spectacular season — in which he also reached the Wimbledon final — with yet another record, easily defeating two of the game’s top young players.
Sinner was vying to become the first Italian to win a Finals title, and he looked like the man to do it after defeating Djokovic in the group round.
But, like Carlos Alcaraz in Saturday’s semi-final, the 22-year-old simply couldn’t handle Djokovic, a guy on a mission who found his best form at the perfect time in the competition.
Sinner’s ability to have Djokovic’s tournament fate in his hands at the end of the group stage, when defeat by Holger Rune would have sent the Serb home early, is tribute to how far Sinner has gone in the last year.
Sinner saved Djokovic’s skin and paid for it in the final, but the quality of his performances at the Pala Alpitour has given many Italians hope that he can be a Grand Slam contender next season.
Djokovic in control
Djokovic seized control of the match early on, broke Sinner at the first opportunity in game four and then comfortably serving out the first set.
Djokovic’s control was so complete that he subdued a partisan crowd that had been raucous for all of Sinner’s matches, and he broke serve again at the opening of the second set.
He scored 14 points in a row from the start of the fourth game of the first set into the third game of the second, which Sinner finally won to just hold his serve.
Sinner appeared to be walked over, but he showed tremendous spirit and thrilled the fans to its feet when he maintained his serve in game seven, a 15-minute mini-epic in which Djokovic had two break points, to keep the score at 4-3.
However, he was unable to keep up with Djokovic and eventually surrendered the match in dismal fashion with a double fault.
Earlier in the day, Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury defended their ATP Finals doubles championship with a 6-3, 6-4 triumph over Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos.
The US Open champions defended their title with a near-perfect campaign in Turin, going undefeated in five matches.
After winning the season-ending tournament undefeated last year, American Ram and British Salisbury extended their winning streak to ten matches.
Following the straight-sets defeat, Granollers and Zeballos lost the year-end top spot in the world rankings, with their ousted Green Group opponents Ivan Dodig and Austin Krajicek remaining in first.