Since 1987, it has been a tradition for Gstaad and Newport to be the first events after Wimbledon. Båstad replaced Boston as the third post-Wimbledon event in 1990. Historically, better players chose Switzerland over Sweden, but it was not the case this year; four top 20 players arrived at the Swedish coast, while no one from the Top 20 in the Swiss Alps. Casper Ruud, who had won Gstaad twice in a row, chose Båstad this time (he likes to collect ATP 250 titles). However, in the final, he faced Andrey Rublev, who has been super consistent this year, and the Russian claimed his 14th title. In Gstaad, Pedro Cachin  captured his maiden title. The 28-year-old Argentinian was little known prior to this year, but reaching the fourth round in Madrid certainly helped him believe he could win an ATP title. “In the beginning of the match, I was a little nervous and made a few mistakes. It was the first time I had played against a lefty in the tournament, but I stayed there,” Cachin said after the final, in which four points separated him from defeat. “I tried to be positive, more aggressive, and go to the net. In a final, it is difficult to play like this the whole match. I am very, very happy.” The Hopman Cup has returned to the tennis calendar after a four-year absence. The event, which was traditionally held in Perth (January) from 1989 to 2019 for eight teams, has been moved to Nice (July), with the hardcourt surface replaced by clay, and six teams were invited for the new opening. The Hopman Cup represents an exhibition status, so the two biggest stars (Carlos Alcaraz, Holger Rune) didn’t seem to be playing at their 100%. As a consequence, they didn’t push their teams to the final. Croats (Donna Vekić, Borna Ćorić) took advantage of it, however, they had to save a match point in mixed doubles against Spain to move through to the final. Croatia had won that event once before, in 1996 (Iva Majoli, Goran Ivanišević)… 37-year-old Kevin Anderson decided to come back to the tour after more than a year break, and advanced to the quarterfinal in Newport. Two teenagers noticed good results this week: Serb Hamad Međedović  advanced to the Gstaad semifinal (he actually turned 20 during the week) while one year younger Alex Michelsen  of the United States, played the Newport final in his just second main-level appearance. The current best Swedish player, Mikael Ymer  couldn’t play in his home country tournament because he has been suspended for 18 months for violating anti-doping rules: “I find it difficult to comprehend that they found an 18 month suspension to be a just punishment. I do not believe I broke those rules and my conscience is clear with God as my witness.” He is another suspended Top 100 player following Polish Kamil Majchrzak who cannot play in 2023.
Sergi Bruguera was the main favorite to win the title in Stuttgart. He was on a 15-match winning streak, not being seriously threatened in the meantime. So it was quite shocking that he wilted in the third set against his compatriot (Basque though), Alberto Berasategui . Berasategui was little known at the time, but this victory gave him wings, and he began to be one of the most dangerous clay-courters; in 1994, he advanced to the French Open final, where he lost to… Bruguera. Magnus Gustafsson, who claimed the biggest title of his career, came back from a 2:4 deficit in the deciding set of the final. At 4-all, he fought off three mini-match points with the help of his ad-court serve, delivered from an extreme position, close to the tramlines. The 1992 edition of The Mercedes Cup gathered the best line-up in history, but the following year wasn’t bad either – there were three Top 10 players. “Probably the best I’ve played in three years,” Amos Mansdorf told the crowd of 7,041 after triumphing in Washington D.C. “At this point in my career, I’m very much in control out there. I know when the big point is coming, and I was ready today every time we played a big point. Playing 10 years on the tour helped with that.” The 28-year-old Mansdorf saved three set points in the opener. “He’s had a couple of early losses lately, and everyone on the tour takes notice of that – that Lendl isn’t invincible anymore,” said Robbie Weiss  after a 2-6, 7-6, 6-4 second-round win over Ivan Lendl. It was Lendl’s sixth defeat in seven matches – at the time it was pretty obvious that the time of the best player of the 80s, then 33 years old, is counted, and he couldn’t be considered among favorites to win the biggest titles anymore.
Bastad (ATP 250; clay outdoors)
(2)🇷🇺Andrey Rublev d. (1)🇳🇴Casper Ruud 7-6(3), 6-0
Gstaad (ATP 250; clay outdoors)
🇦🇷Pedro Cachin d. 🇪🇸Albert Ramos Viñolas 3-6, 6-0, 7-5
Newport (ATP 250; grass outdoors)
(2)🇫🇷Adrian Mannarino d. 🇺🇸Alex Michelsen 6-2, 6-4
“Hopman Cup” – Nice, clay outdoors
Croatia d. Switzerland 2-0
Stuttgart ($915K; clay outdoors)
(16)🇸🇪Magnus Gustafsson d. (2)🇩🇪Michael Stich 6-3, 6-4, 3-6, 4-6, 6-4
Washington ($500K; hard outdoors)
(8)🇮🇱Amos Mansdorf d. (7)🇺🇸Todd Martin 7-6(3), 7-5
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