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Jannik Sinner battles into the night at Wimbledon to defeat Matteo Berrettini

An all-Itallian war saw Jannik Sinner edge countryman Matteo Berrettini by three sets to one to advance to the third round at Wimbledon.

Sinner dumped out Berrettini 7-6(3) 7-6(4) 2-6 7-6(4) in an entertaining second-round clash on Centre Court on Wednesday.

It was a banana-skin tie for the world number one on day three of the Championships against the 2021 runner-up.

While Berrettini showed flashes of his brilliance with 28 aces and 65 winners, Sinner's class and growing maturity shone through as he impressively negotiated a three-hour-and-42-minute encounter to progress into the last 32.

More than sporting bragging rights were on the line when Sinner and Berrettini, who have both been extremely complimentary of each other, walked out to applause.

It was also a clash of fashion brands with Berrettini dressed head to toe in Hugo Boss, while Sinner was the Gucci representative, but the focus soon turned to tennis with big-serves aplenty in a closely fought first set.

A break point opportunity did not occur until the 10th game, which Berrettini saved with a superb volley at the net and the opener eventually went to a tie-break.

Berrettini claimed a mini-break when he sent down a 136mph ace, but Sinner wore down the 28-year-old and took the first set in 52 minutes.

Set two started with a seven-minute hold for Berrettini, who appeared to have the upper-hand when Sinner could only net to give him a break to move 4-2 ahead.

The Australian Open champion responded perfectly, however, breaking back immediately as another tie-break was required.

Sinner again saved his best for the crunch moments, starting with a crisp backhand down the line before he rushed into the net to produce a fine forehand winner as he moved one set away from a Friday meeting with Miomir Kecmanovic.

But Berrettini was not ready to go quietly and even though he has been hampered by injuries during the past two years, his pedigree on grass is undoubted with a brace of Queen's Club titles alongside his 2021 runner-up display in SW19.

And the Fiorentina fan finally broke AC Milan-supporting Sinner at the start of the third set.

The confidence was flowing now for Berrettini, with a perfectly-weighted drop shot enough to put him 5-1 up and back-to-back aces got him on the board.

When Berrettini broke again in the third game of the fourth set, a decider on a raucous Centre Court looked on the cards.

Sinner animatedly gestured to his box, but he quickly regained focus to get back on serve.

The 22-year-old squandered a match point in the 12th game of the fourth set, which was met with thunderous applause for Berrettini, but he came up short in the tie-break to valiantly bow out.

Sinner, whose victory kept him on course for a semi-final showdown with reigning champion Carlos Alcaraz, paid tribute to his compatriot during his on-court interview.

"We are very good friends, we play Davis Cup together, we practice together sometimes and tough we had to face each other in the second round," Sinner said.

"I knew I had to raise my level. He played final here, he is a grass-court specialist and I was looking forward to it. It was a challenge but I am very happy with how I handled the situation."

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