© Fabian Meierhans/ Swiss Open Gstaad

Dominic Thiem in action against Federico Delbonis on Thursday in Gstaad.

Thiem Sinks Delbonis In Gstaad

Austrian next faces Peruvian qualifier Varillas

Dominic Thiem gained further momentum on Thursday at the EFG Swiss Open Gstaad, overcoming Argentine Federico Delbonis 7-6(8), 6-3 to reach his second tour-level quarter-final in as many weeks.

The Austrian let slip a 5-2 lead in the first set, but took the opener after saving two set points in the tie-break. Thiem then opened his shoulders and hit through Delbonis in the second set to advance after one hour and 57 minutes.

“Every win is so important right now and I got a great energy from my box,” Thiem said in his on-court interview. “They also knew that first set was crucial and the key to the match. I am coming from [reaching] the quarters in Bastad and I really wanted to back it up here in Gstaad.

"I have won two matches which means a lot to me right now. I really need those ranking points. Every match win is something very special.”

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The former World No. 3, who saved one match point in his first-round victory against Hugo Gaston, defeated Emil Ruusuvuori and Roberto Bautista Agut en route to his maiden tour-level quarter-final of the season last week in Bastad.

Thiem will be aiming to go one stage further at the ATP 250 clay-court event in Switzerland when he next faces Peruvian qualifier Juan Pablo Varillas. In a rain-disrupted match, the World No. 115 Varillas upset third seed Bautista Agut 7-6(3), 7-5.

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“The key moment was that set point save,” Thiem added. “I thought I was playing well the whole match. I was in control in the first set, but then I didn’t play a good game when serving for the set and it was close. He can play really heavy here, especially in altitude. Those two set points saved plus winning that tie-break was the key.”

The 17-time tour-level titlist Thiem has fond memories in Gstaad, having lifted the trophy on his previous appearance in 2015. The last time the 28-year-old won a tour-level crown was at the US Open in 2020.

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