Cerundolo played amazing tennis for a whole week in Sweden to win his maiden trophy on Sunday. Wins over several notable opponents proved that the world number 30 belongs among the best and it was particularly evident as the event went on.
Beating Ruud on clay is not an easy feat and neither is beating Pablo Carreno Busta or Sebastian Baez. It was the crowning moment for him after a long season that featured a lot of hard work. Speaking about the confidence he showed in Bastad, Cerundolo admitted it came from Wimbledon.
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"That match helped me in many aspects. Entering the centre court of Wimbledon, at a full stadium and playing against Rafa, being able to maintain my emotions and not be totally scared, helped me a lot to know that, if I could play a great game there, I can do it anywhere.”
Elaborating further, he said:
"I was not overwhelmed by the situation and I convinced myself that I am prepared to face any challenge. On a tennis level, having taken it to the fourth set and having had the chance to win that set and take it to the fifth, convinced me. Before on the grass tour, I had lost matches in the third set, very tight, I didn’t get it, I had a lot of anger about it and I was also angry about not having been able to take Rafa to a fifth set. We (his team) analyzed it and we realized that he was doing a great job, that at some point it was going to happen to me.”