Bautista Agut Wins Second Title In Four Weeks In Stuttgart
Roberto Bautista Agut adds the Stuttgart clay-court crown to the grass-court title he won in 's-Hertogenbosch.
Roberto Bautista Agut continued his dominant run of form on the ATP World Tour, claiming his second title in four weeks with a 6-3, 4-6, 6-2 victory over Lukas Rosol at the MercedesCup.
Bautista Agut improved to 11-1 since mid-June with the win, having also captured his maiden tour-level crown at the Topshelf Open in ‘s-Hertogenbosch (d. Becker). He holds a 32-15 match record on the season, already surpassing his win total from a year ago (26).
The third seed became the ninth Spanish champion in Stuttgart and sixth in the last 10 years, following in the footsteps of Rafael Nadal (2005, ‘07), David Ferrer (2006), Albert Montanes (2010) and Juan Carlos Ferrero (2011).
World No. 23 Bautista Agut brings home a white Mercedes-Benz GLA 45 AMG 4MATIC, €77,315 and 250 Emirates ATP Rankings points, breaking into the Top 20 for the first time when the rankings are released on Monday. Rosol, who was attempting to reel off four consecutive Top 30 wins, all against seeded opponents, claims €40,720 and 150 Emirates ATP Rankings points.
"Since the start of the season, I believed a lot in myself and my work," Bautista Agut told ATPWorldTour.com. "I've been playing really well, won a lot of matches and it was only a question of time before this happened.
"It's really difficult to win a tournament on grass and then go to Wimbledon and win a couple matches there and then with only a few practices on clay, come here and win the title. It's really amazing."
The Castellon de la Plana native overcame 13 aces from Rosol, saving five of six break points while converting on three of his own. After a slight hiccup in the second set, having been broken in the tenth game to level the match at a set apiece, Bautista Agut reeled off four straight games to open the decider. He fired a forehand winner past a lunging Rosol on his first match point for the win in one hour and 42 minutes.
"The key today was to be a wall, try to make Lukas move," added the Spaniard.
Rosol was looking to become the third Czech champion in Stuttgart and first since 1985, when Ivan Lendl hoisted the trophy. Tomas Smid also triumphed in 1979.
"From my side, the match was not so good in quality," said Rosol. "I was looking to find a good rhythm, but the serve was not working at all. I had to risk a lot with my shots. The level was not as good as the previous rounds and it's a pity because I felt really good this week. It's a good experience for me and hopefully I can make a better result next year."
The 36th edition of the MercedesCup will be the last on clay, with the ATP World Tour 250 tournament moving to grass courts in 2015. Earlier in the week, former Wimbledon champions John McEnroe and Michael Stich were on hand for the official opening.