Alex de Minaur reaches major money milestone

Alex de Minaur has reached a major money milestone in his first full year on the ATP World Tour following a second win at the Next Gen ATP Finals in Milan.

The Australian No.1 defeated Andrey Rublev to secure a berth in the semi-finals of the under-21s tournament.

De Minaur broke the Russian world No.68 four times throughout the round-robin encounter to score a comfortable 4-1 3-4 (5-7) 4-1 4-2 win.

The youngest player at the event, the 19-year-old Sydney-born star has now broken the US$1 million barrier for his singles performances in 2018.

De Minaur entered the tournament on US$950,030 earned and has guaranteed himself at least US$116,000, plus a US$52,000 participation fee, for his two wins.

There’s still money to be picked up, too – if he wins the tournament without dropping a match, the Australian’s cheque will read US$407,000.

He joins Canadian Denis Shapovalov as the only teenagers above the US$1m mark on this year’s prize money list.

Alex de Minaur is a chance to win the NextGen Finals in Milan. Pic: Getty

Greek youngster Stefanos Tsitsipas turned 20 in August and has earned US$2.1m.

For de Minaur, the million-dollar milestone follows his rise from world No.208 at the turn of the year to his current position as No.31 and Australia’s top-ranked player.

He made five appearances at the top level in 2017 before his breakout season this year.

It all kicked off in January when he reached the Brisbane semi-finals and Sydney final, while he reached the Washington final in August and the Shenzhen semi-finals in September.

He also participated in six second-tier Challenger tournaments, reaching three finals for one victory.

NextGen semis await

De Minaur will face off against American Taylor Fritz in the final round-robin match before the weekend’s knockout rounds.

He defeated Rublev in one hour and 27 minutes.

“It was great,” said the world No.31.

“I knew coming in it was going to be a really tough match and I was going to have to play some really good tennis and not leave too many balls short because his forehand is seriously one of the most dangerous weapons out there on the tour.”

Tsitsipas became the first player to secure his passage out of the other group with his 4-3 (7-3) 4-3( 7-5) 4-2 win over Frances Tiafoe.

with AAP