into your inbox
Thousand have already subscribedy
Maiden tour title for Cerundolo in Bastad
An Argentinian man was going to lift the trophy – and it turned out to be the underdog
In the all-Argentine clash in the Bastad final, it was the underdog who won through – Francisco Cerundolo beat eighth seed Sebastian Baez 7-6 (4), 6-2.
It was their first meeting at tour level – but Baez had won their two most recent clashes on the Challenger circuit.
The first set was an intense battle, lasting an hour and a quarter, with world No 34 Baez breaking in the first game, and Cerundolo breaking right back. After that, Baez dropped all nine of his subsequent break points, including six at 5-5 that would have allowed him to serve for the set.
His opponent also missed seven break points, including two set points at 6-5 in his favour. A tiebreak was the inevitable outcome with Cerundolo quickly taking a 4-0 lead and seeing it out 7-4.
The second set was much shorter, with Cerundolo making the most of his momentum to move to a double-break lead and see out the match on his serve.
Cerundolo will now be at a new career-high ranking of world No 30, and take the position of Argentina’s No 2, behind Diego Schwartzman. He also moves ahead of Baez, who did enjoy a remarkable week in Sweden, defeating second seed Andrey Rublev in the semi-final, and Dominic Thiem in the quarters.
This is the 23-year-old’s first tour-level title, making him the eighth man to win a maiden crown this season.