Ruud treatment – Casper Ruud tops local favourite Schwartzman for second Buenos Aires title

Casper Ruud rallied from a set down to defeat Diego Schwartzman in Buenos Aires, claiming his seventh ATP title and sixth on clay.

Tennis – ATP 250 – Argentina Open – Buenos Aires Lawn Tennis Club, Buenos Aires, Argentina – February 13, 2022 Norway’s Casper Ruud celebrates with the trophy after winning the final || 221623_0031

Casper Ruud completed his second title run at the Argentina Open, rallying past 2021 champion Diego Schwartzman, 5-7, 6-2, 6-3, to claim his seventh ATP title on Sunday in Buenos Aires.

The 8th-ranked Norwegian has now won nine consecutive matches at Buenos Aires, and 15 straight on clay.

Ruud – it will build confidence for the rest of the season

The result seemed very much in doubt after Schwartzman saved a set point by winning an epic 42-stroke rally in the tenth game of the first set, then rallied to win the final seven points of the opener to take it, 7-5.

But Ruud stayed the course and eventually wore Schwartzman down with his heavy, grinding baseline game in sets two and three.

“I just tried to fight and stay in there the whole match because I know how things can change in a tennis match, and luckily it did my way today,” he said.

The 23-year-old says the title will help give him the confidence he needs to build upon his breakout season in 2021, which featured 57 wins and five ATP titles.

“It means a lot,” said Ruud, who won the Buenos Aires title in 2020 and did not play the event last year. “This is the first time I had to defend a title and I’m super happy and very excited – I’m excited for all the clay tournaments obviously to come this year. Let’s see how I can do but the goal is of course to do well, and I think this is the perfect start – it will build confidence for the rest of the season and also for the next weeks when I’m here in South America.”

Ruud roaring on clay

Ruud’s return to the clay for the first time since last summer is a stark reminder of just how lethal the Norwegian is on his favourite surface. He has won 19 consecutive ATP 250 matches on clay (winning titles at Geneva, Bastad, Gstaad, Kitzbuhel and Buenos Aires) and reeled off 15 victories in succession on clay overall.

Since 2020, Ruud is 49-11 on clay (78-30 all years) in ATP matches.

He improves to 2-2 against Schwartzman on clay, and 3-5 against the 15th-ranked Argentinian overall.

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