Teenaged Jannik Sinner and 30-year-old Vasek Pospisil will both hope for a career-first title on Saturday when they meet in the final of the ATP event in Sofia.
Sinner, aged 19 and ranked 44th, becomes the youngest Italian to reach a Tour-level final thanks to a 6-3, 7-5 defeat of Adrian Mannarino in their Friday semi-final at the last event of the regular season.
Sofia will mark the end of the COVID-marred tennis regular season.
Canada’s Pospisil owns nine lower-level Challenger honours but will hope to come good at the elite level as he plays his third ATP final after beating Richard Gasquet of France 6-7(6), 6-2, 6-0.
Sinner took 87 minutes to go past Mannarino, finalist in Kazakhstan at the just under a fortnight ago.
“It is nice to be in the final, playing one more match which, for me, is the most important,” Sinner said a year after winning the NextGen title in Milan..
“Today I felt quite well on court, it’s good to be playing my first (Tour-level) final this year. I’m looking forward to tomorrow.”
The youngster has come up short in two ATP semis
Sinner made it third time lucky after losing his first two tour-level semi-finals at indoor hard-court events. – Antwerp in 2019 and Cologne last month.
The Italian has been methodically advancing up the rankings since winning the unofficial Milan title a year ago.
The youngest player in the Top 100 stood No. 95 last November and has cut that figure in half during 2020.
Pospisil took just under two hours to defeat Gasquet, raining down 19 aces and breaking five times.
He and Sinner have never played.