Top seed Stefanos Tsitsipas clinches his 30th win on hard courts this season in Stockholm by ousting home favorite Mikael Ymer on Friday evening, advancing to the semifinals at the ATP 250 event.
Tsitsipas, who has already secured his place in the Nitto ATP Finals, prevailed over Ymer 7-5, 6-3 after one hour and 43 minutes.
In his on-court interview, the 24-year-old commented: “I really had to play good tennis, come up with some creative shots, and I’m very happy with the result. I had to really work hard for it.”
Adding: “He came very close, getting kind of a small lead, but I stopped him. I was there, insisting, and persevered in the first set. It was such a crucial moment to go through, and I did that, and the rest came.”
In the opener, the top-seeded player broke first to take a 3-1 lead, and soon afterward, he survived three breakpoints, holding to extend his advantage at 4-1.
The Swede continued to fight his rival with great determination, showing the run of form that led him to the semifinals in Florence last week was no coincidence.
The all-court player consistently tested the Astana Open runner-up by imposing an intense rhythm. As a result, Tsitsipas had to fight off a breakpoint to consolidate a 5-2 lead.
But in a turn of events, the World No. 79 would bring the set to another level, breaking the Athens native when serving for the match, narrowing the gap 4-5, and back on serve.
Applying pressure on his opponent’s backhand and charging at the net to win pivotal points, Ymer set things even at 5-5.
Calm under pressure, Greece’s top racquet regrouped, boosting his game to find his way through an adversary who was relentless in attack.
The two-time Monte-Carlo Masters champion rallied to fend off another breakpoint, jumping ahead, 6-5, marching to serve for the match.
After an hour and six minutes, Tsitsipas earned a 7-5 first-set victory, winning 63 percent of his first-serve points.
Frustration made an entrance on the Skovde native side of the net, resulting in a slow start to the second set, which cost him an early break of serve - 0-2 down in the score.
From there on, Tsitsipas managed to sort out the challenges imposed by the skillful, talented player, who would fail to halt the Tour leader for wins (54) this season from building a solid 6-3 victory.
On Wednesday, Apostolos Tsitsipas’ pupil set off his campaign in Stockholm, taking part in the tournament for the first time since 2018 when he claimed his maiden ATP tour title.
The former champion defeated American Maxime Cressy in straight sets. By overcoming Ymer at the Royal Tennis Hall, he reached his 10th semifinal on Tour of the season.
Ruusuvuori and Tsitsipas have never played one another at tour level.