Matteo, fresh from Covid, starts well in the first set, loses the tie break in the second and physically gives in to the finalist of Roland Garros in the third. As of tomorrow, however, he goes back to number 14 in the ranking
No trio for Matteo Berrettini. The Roman, in the final of the ATP 250 in Gstaad stops against a fresher Casper Ruud who grabs the victory in a comeback 4-6 7-6 (4) 6-2. Thus Matteo’s winning streak ends at 12, who in this season full of joys and sorrows has also dropped out of the top 10 after 116 weeks. After the victories in Stuttgart and Queen’s, obtained after returning from the operation on his right hand that kept him out of the circuit for almost three months, the Roman in the Swiss clay final faced the first top 10 in a long time. Precisely since January, when he was beaten by Rafa Nadal in the semifinal of the Australian Open. Casper is a tough guy, atypical Norwegian, born on earth and raised to play (to be honest) this year’s Roland Garros final against Nadal. A bit of regret for a few opportunities not exploited by our team in the second set, but credit must be given to Ruud for having led a very solid match in the service. Between the end of the second set and the 3rd Berrettini gave up above all from a physical point of view. The stop for the covid and the after-effects of the virus did not allow him to show up full of energy and this in the end made the difference. Matteo consoles himself with a position earned in the world ranking, and with the 150 points of the final that make 900 in total in the last three outings.
Great balance up to the 5th game with Matteo trying to force in response and takes 30-30 on the Norwegian’s serve. Double foul by Ruud on the ball and 3-2 and it goes to the advantages for the first time in the match. Pushes again with the backhand Berrettini who has the first break point of the match. The forehand of him runs away, he returns 40-40. Matteo earns a second chance and Ruud doesn’t defend this time. Straight out and Roman’s break: 3-2. Immediate reaction of the Norwegian who leads 30-0 on the Italian bar. Winning serve by Matteo to halve the disadvantage, but a second forehand mistake gives Casper two balls of the counterbreak. The first is canceled by an ace. He also cancels the second with a nice second serve. It goes to the advantages. Third mistake of a photocopy forehand and another ball of the counterbreak for Ruud who this time does not waste the opportunity. The referee, however, gives the point to Berrettini for the ball out, not called, of the Norwegian. Averted danger and more advantages. The Roman has twice the chance to consolidate the break, but the tie continues. A nice exchange of shabby volleys, and Ruud’s mistake still grants Matteo the 4-2 ball. He finally closes with an ace after an eternal game. Berrettini maintains the advantage, and when needed for the set he does not miss the mistake of forehand at the opening. The service, however, is always solid, closes 40-15 and takes home the 1st set for 6-4.
In the second set, each of the contenders opens, keeping the time at zero. Berrettini, however, responds well, takes advantage of the many seconds served by the Norwegian and has two break points in the 3rd game. Two wrong showers by Matteo Graziano Casper who then keeps the serve. There is great balance between the two until in the ninth game Berrettini has a break point. But the Norwegian clears with a champion’s forehand and then holds the serve for the 5-4. The tie break is played and with a beautiful passer-by Berrettini starts with a minibreak advantage. Immediate recovery of the Norwegian for 1-1. Then a forehand mistake and the lead of a minibreak goes Ruud: 2-1. Casper goes up 4-1, then 5-1 for a bad short ball from the Roman. Berretto recovers a minibreak and goes up 5-3, but Ruud’s ace arrives, which is worth 3 set points. He closes 7-4 Casper. Everything is played in the 3rd set, but Berrettini is in reserve. Without petrol he gives up the bar in the 3rd game and in the 5th from 40-0 undergoes the double break that kills the game.
July 24 – 14:14
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