Wawrinka Surges Through In Stockholm

  • Posted: Oct 17, 2023

Wawrinka Surges Through In Stockholm

Ruusuvuori cruises through, Wolf upsets Baez

After 12 years away, Stan Wawrinka wasted no time getting back to business in Stockholm on Tuesday night.

The 38-year-old Swiss defeated Borna Gojo 7-5, 6-4 in the first round at the BNP Paribas Nordic Open to become the oldest player to win a match at the indoor ATP 250 since a then-39-year-old Jimmy Connors in 1991. Wawrinka converted three of 10 break points he earned to wrap a 91-minute triumph in his maiden Lexus ATP Head2Head meeting with Gojo.

Wawrinka previously competed in Stockholm in 2010, when he reached the quarter-finals, and in 2011. The former World No. 3 is now 26-19 for the season and will chase his fourth tour-level quarter-final appearance of the year when he meets lucky loser Tomas Machac next in Sweden.

The BNP Paribas Nordic Open is not quite a home tournament for Emil Ruusuvuori, but it is not far off.

The World No. 61 made a lightning-fast start to his campaign Tuesday in Stockholm with a 6-2, 6-1 triumph against qualifier Benjamin Hassan. Ruusuvuori, who hails from neighbouring Finland, was delighted with his 57-minute triumph in his first competitive match since he spearheaded his country’s successful Davis Cup Finals Group Stage campaign more than four weeks ago.

“I’m very happy with the performance,” said Ruusuvuori. “I had a couple of weeks off from the Tour, so it’s good to start this way with such a solid performance. It’s a special place to be… For me it’s one of the best weeks for sure. I really like Stockholm, it’s a place that I could possibly even live in and for my friends and family it is easy to come and see.”

Ruusuvuori will play third seed Tallon Griekspoor in the second round in Stockholm, where he reached the semi-finals in 2022. Griekspoor holds a 2-0 Lexus ATP Head2Head lead against the Finn, with those victories taking place this season in ‘s-Hertogenbosch and at the Davis Cup Finals Group Stage.

There was a trio of upsets earlier in the day in Stockholm. J.J. Wolf defeated fifth seed Sebastian Baez 7-6(5), 6-2 at the indoor ATP 250 to set a meeting with Laslo Djere, who beat home wild card Leo Borg 6-3, 6-3. Qualifier Pavel Kotov kept his cool to oust seventh seed Christopher Eubanks 6-7(2), 6-3, 7-6(5) in two hours, 28 minutes. The World No. 109’s reward is a second-round clash with Lorenzo Sonego.

Eighth seed Daniel Evans also fell at the first hurdle in Sweden. Austrian qualifier Filip Misolic beat the Washington champion 6-4, 7-6(1) to set a second-round appointment with Gael Monfils or Marton Fucsovics.

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