HELSINKI, November 17, 2019
Emil Ruusuvuori has clinched his fourth ATP Challenger title of the season winning the inaugural Tali Open in Helsinki. The No. 1 Finnish player fought past No. 14 seed Mohamed Safwat of Egypt 6-3, 6-7(4), 6-2 in Sunday’s singles final at the Tali Tennis Center.
After a first-round bye, Ruusuvuori defeated Geoffrey Blancaneaux of France, compatriot and wild card entry Otto Virtanen, Alex Molcan of Slovakia and Ilya Ivashka from Belarus en route to the championship match. The No. 10 seed struck eight aces against Safwat and won 54 per cent of the total points played to prevail after two hours and nine minutes.
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“It was a tough match,” Ruusuvuori said. “Maybe I didn’t play my best tennis, but I had a lot of success. In the third set, I tried to make him run and then hit some good shots.”
Following his triumphs in Fergana, Uzbekistan, Mallorca, Spain and Glasgow in Great Britain, Ruusuvuori collected his fourth ATP Challenger crown and pocketed in Finland €6,190 in prize money as well as 80 ATP Ranking points. The 20-year-old finishes the season with a career-high World No. 125.
“It’s important to have a small break without any thoughts about tennis and I can do something else,” Ruusuvuori said about his plans for the upcoming off-season.
In December, the youngster will practice a couple of weeks at the Rafael Nadal Academy in Mallorca. “When I won the ATP Challenger in Mallorca, Toni Nadal told me I could go there for training anytime I want.”
Earlier in the day, Frederik Nielsen from Denmark and Tim Pütz of Germany took the doubles title. The top seeds eased past Tomislav Draganja of Croatia and Russia’s Pavel Kotov 7-6(2), 6-0. The encounter lasted 61 minutes.