Cuevas Closes In On Sao Paulo Three-Peat
Pablo Cuevas will go for a record third consecutive Brasil Open title on Sunday. The 31-year-old right-hander dismissed top seed Pablo Carreno Busta of Spain 6-3, 7-6(2) on Saturday in Sao Paulo to give himself a chance for a three-peat. The third-seeded Cuevas won 82 per cent of his first-serve points and feasted on Carreno Busta's second serves, taking 70 per cent of those points.
Since the first edition of the Brasil Open, in 2001, no player has won back-to-back-to-back titles at the ATP World Tour 250 tournament. Spaniard Nicolas Almagro won back-to-back crowns in 2011-2012 but fell in the quarter-finals to David Nalbandian in 2013.
Cuevas has avoided such slip-ups this week. He'll try to win his sixth career ATP World Tour title – all on clay – against second seed Albert Ramos-Vinolas. Cuevas leads their FedEx ATP Head2Head series 3-1. The Spaniard erased a match point on Saturday against Portuguese Joao Sousa to win their semi-final 6-7(5), 7-5, 6-2 on the red clay.
Sousa had the match on his racquet, serving at 5-4 in the second set. The fourth seed fell behind 0/40 but crawled back into the game and led at ad-in. But Ramos-Vinolas erased the match point with a sharp forehand up the line that Sousa netted.
The Spaniard would earn the break and take the final nine of 11 games to claim the three-hour and three-minute semi-final. Ramos-Vinolas last played in an ATP World Tour title match in October at the Chengdu Open in China (l. to Khachanov). He'll be going for his second ATP World Tour crown after taking his maiden title last July on clay at the SkiStar Swedish Open in Bastad (d. Verdasco).
DOUBLES FINAL SET
Fourth seeds Marcus Daniell of New Zealand and Marcelo Demoliner of Brazil beat Argentines Facundo Bagnis and Guillermo Duran 6-3, 7-6(6) to reach the doubles final. They will meet the unseeded Brazilian team of Rogerio Dutra Silva and Andre Sa, who beat Italians Simone Bolelli and Fabio Fognini 6-3, 6-2 in one hour and eight minutes.