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Vet Ferrer rolls back the years by taking Swedish Open

 

By David Mason

David Ferrer beat Alexandr Dolgopolov to become the Swedish Open champion. It was the Spaniard's first ATP Tour title since winning the Vienna Open almost two years ago.

The 35-year-old - who needed seven match points to get over the line in the end - came through 6-4 6-4 in Bastad to seal his 27th career title.

Ferrer, who is now ranked 46th in the world, had a comfortable lead of 5-1 over his Ukrainian opponent in the second set.

It was Ferrer's 27th ATP World Tour title, the most in the Open Era without winning a Grand Slam, and his first since emerging victorious in Vienna in 2015.

The former World No. 3, who has since fallen to 46 in the Emirates ATP Rankings, will enjoy a bump of 13 spots with the title.

With Roger Federer, Feliciano Lopez and Victor Estrella Burgos also winning titles this year, it marked just the second time in the Open Era that at least four different players aged 35 and over have claimed ATP World Tour crowns in a single season.

"It's been two years that I haven't won a tournament, so I'm really happy for this win," said Ferrer.

"I was a little nervous up 5-1 and Alexandr played without pressure.

"I tried to be focused on every point, but when I had all those match points I was thinking too much.

"I am going week by week, match by match and I still have the motivation. I know it will be very difficult to get back to the Top 10, but if I stay competitive like this week, I will play next year for sure. I still enjoy playing tennis, but it's different as I am 35 years old."

In addition, Ferrer joins Swedes Magnus Gustafsson (4), Mats Wilander (3) and Bjorn Borg (3) as the only players to win the Bastad title on three or more occasions in the Open era. He previously defeated Nicolas Almagro for the 2007 crown and again downed his countryman for the 2012 title.

Belfast Telegraph

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