Alex de Minaur Secures Back-to-Back Title Triumphs in Acapulco
Alex de Minaur lifts the trophy in Acapulco, Mexico. March 3, 2024. Photo courtesy: Abierto Mexicano Telcel presented by HSBC.

Third seed Alex de Minaur retained his title in Acapulco by outlasting former world number two Casper Ruud with a straight-set triumph in the final held at the Arena Stadium on Saturday night.

World No. 9 Alex de Minaur outlasted three-time major runner-up Casper Ruud, producing a 6-4, 6-4 victory after one hour and 57 minutes, becoming the first man to successfully defend the Abierto Mexicano Telcel presented by HSBC tile in Acapulco since 2014 on Saturday night.

In his post-match interview, the two-time winner on Mexican soil commented: “It’s been an amazing week. Probably a week I didn’t really expect if I’m honest.”

I came to Mexico not feeling my best. I think today, I played my best match of the tournament, so I’m extremely happy with that.”

The all-court Australian player mastered his court coverage, making Ruud work hard to win every point, becoming a wall on the other side of the net.

On serve, the Sydney native made a statement, winning 67 percent of the first serve points and mostly 74 percent on his second.

In addition, he maximized his chances, converting three of four break point opportunities he earned while dropping his serve only once throughout the encounter.

With the wind in his sails, he displayed his trademark speed and athleticism, showing no mercy at the net, winning 79 percent of his approaches.

Overall, De Minaur finished with 27 winners and just nine unforced errors compared to the sixth seed eight and nine, respectively.

The 25-year-old who made a solid start to the 2024 season, cracking into the Top 10 for the first time in mid-February after reaching the final in Rotterdam - lost to Italian Jannik Sinner, captured his first crown of the year in Mexico, the eighth of his career.

Acapulco has been a very good place to me for my tennis career,” he added.

The first time I won a 500, and [now] the first time I’ve defended a title in my career. I feel at home here, and it’s a great place to be.”

Meanwhile, Ruud arrived in Acapulco from Los Cabos, where he also made it through the final, falling to another Australian player, eighth seed Jordan Thompson.

The 10-time ATP titlist progressed to a career-first ATP 500 championship match by producing a stellar comeback against Dane Holger Rune, rallying from 2-4 15-40* in the third set to close out a 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 semifinal win.

During the trophy ceremony, Ruud addressed De Minaur, sharing a few words with the two-time champion.

Fantastic playing all week, too good tonight, too good every night,” he said.

It seems like you are playing in Acapulco quite well, and I guess you will come back next year. I hope not, but I am sure you will!

Despite losing to the Aussie in the final, Ruud, 25, currently ranked at Wolrd No. 11, will break back into the top 10 on Monday for the first time since last November.

According to the AMT Director, Alvaro Falla, nearly 35,000 people attended the 31st edition of the tournament.

Cecilia demartini
Sports Pundit staff writer @ceci_2812
Cecilia is a writer and journalist, passionate about motorsport and tennis.Her articles are published in newspapers and international online publications.

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