Stefanos Tsitsipas says his grandmother passed away five minutes before French Open final

1 month ago 17

(CNN)Stefanos Tsitsipas has paid tribute to his grandmother, who he says passed away five minutes before he took to the court for the French Open final against Novak Djokovic.

Tsitsipas, playing in his first grand slam final, won the first two sets of Sunday's match before Djokovic mounted a comeback to win 6-7 2-6 6-3 6-2 6-4.

"A wise woman whose faith in life, and willingness to give and provide can't be compared to any other human being that I have ever met," Tsitsipas wrote of his grandmother on Instagram.

    "It's important to have more people like her in this world. Because people like her make you come alive. They make you dream.

      "I would like to say that regardless of the day, circumstance or situation, this is entirely dedicated to her, and only her. Thank you for raising my father. Without him this wouldn't have been possible."

      Tsitsipas stretches to play a forehand against Djokovic.

      In Sunday's final, Tsitsipas took the first set in a tie break and broke Djokovic twice in the second set to race into a 2-0 lead.

      But the momentum started to swing and Tsitsipas, who also went to five sets against Alexander Zverev in the semifinal, called on his trainer for treatment at the end of the third set.

      Djokovic asserted his dominance in the final three sets and went on to claim his 19th grand slam title -- moving him one behind the totals of Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer.

      It also saw him become just the third man in history after Rod Laver and Roy Emerson to win each grand slam at least twice.

      Tsitsipas, 22, put his defeat into perspective in his Instagram post.

        "Life isn't about winning or losing. It's about enjoying every single moment in life whether that's alone or with others," he added.

        "Living a meaningful life without misery and abjection. Lifting trophies and celebrating wins is something, but not everything."

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