A full house saw an exceptional week of tennis in Stockholm, coming down to a blockbuster final between former champion Stefanos Tsitsipas and seventh seed Holger Rune, crowned champion on Sunday.
In their second meeting at tour level, Holger Rune showcased an exceptional performance to beat World No. 5 Stefanos Tsitsipas, 6-4, 6-4, in one hour and 35 minutes of brilliant tennis, capturing the title at the Stockholm Open.
In his on-court interview, the young Danish player stressed: “It was an unbelievable match from my side. I knew it was going to be difficult, but I just tried to stick to the game plan. I had to play my best tennis today, and it was good that I could find the level. I am super happy.”
Further assessing their clash, he outlined: “It was very close to perfection. I was making a lot of returns and playing pretty well behind my serve.”
“Stefanos is an amazing player who always makes it difficult. It was a super fun match to play.”
The opener set the tone of the encounter with Rune in control, showing the hard work done throughout the year, mentally and physically, has brought his game to another level.
The seventh seed converted the first break point and held to take a 3-1 lead.
Playing aggressively, he found consistency and accuracy in his game to outplay his opponent with authority.
Nearly half an hour into the first set, he had broke Tsitsipas on three occasions, building a comfortable 5-3 advantage.
Continuing to keep his level high, he applied pressure on his rival - who never really found his best tennis, displaying great power with his forehand.
Then, he served for the match to seal a solid start to his third tour-level final this season, with a 6-4 win after 37 minutes.
Also strong behind his serve, the World No. 27 won 75 percent of his first-serve points.
For his part, competing at his seventh final on Tour this season, his second in a row, Tsitsipas made a good start to the second set, however, Rune continued to lead the way, up a set and a break, setting the score 2-1.
Fighting back, the Greek saved a breakpoint, keeping his hopes alive at 2-3.
In a tight sixth game, the 24-year-old let slip his first chance to break his adversary, who notched an ace to hold, extending his advantage 4-2.
Unbothered behind his serve, Rune’s firepower was exceptional against the Tour leader for matches won (56) this year.
Moreover, without dropping a set, he wrapped up the second set 6-4, marching to earn his second title at tour level in style - he claimed his maiden ATP trophy in Munich early this season.
En route to the final, he outlasted Chile’s Cristian Garin, second seed Cameron Norrie, and fifth seed Alex de Minaur in a three-hour thriller.
By emerging victorious in Stockholm, the 19-year-old became the second player to win multiple titles as a teen in 2022.
Next, he plans to play in Basel, Paris, and Milan, as he has already qualified for the Intesa Sanpaolo Next Gen ATP Finals, staged in November in Italy.
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