ATP St. Petersburg: Stan Wawrinka edges Aljaz Bedene to make winning start

Tennis - In the other first round match, Martin Klizan has defeated Evgeny Donskoy in straight sets

by Jovica Ilic
ATP St. Petersburg: Stan Wawrinka edges Aljaz Bedene to make winning start

A former world number 3 Stan Wawrinka has returned into the Top 100 after a solid campaign at the US Open and he is back on the winning way in St. Petersburg as well, defeating Aljaz Bedene 7-5 7-6 in an hour and 48 minutes for his 14th win of the season. These two have met three times in a row in Chennai and this was their closest match so far.

2016 finalist did more damage with his first serve and he saved four out of five break points he faced to stay in touch with the Slovenian who fought great before falling short in the closing stages of both sets. Aljaz had to play against eight break points and he managed to same six, not enough to win at least a set against the three-time Grand Slam champion who will now face Ilya Ivashka or Guido Pella in the second round.

Bedene had to dig deep right from the start, saving three break points in the second game of the match, two of those with service winners, and this game became even more significant when he broke Stan at love in game five to move ahead.

Serving for the set in the 10th game, Aljaz sprayed a backhand error to hand the game to his rival who had the momentum now, firing a forehand down the line winner in game 12 to steal the opener 7-5 with his fourth straight game.

The Swiss repelled two break points at the start of the second set and a couple more at 2-2 to remain unbroken, with both players serving well in the remaining games to set up a tie break. Nothing could separate them until 5-5 when Aljaz sent a forehand long, allowing Wawrinka to secure the win in the following point and book the place in the second round. Monday's results:


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Stan Wawrinka Aljaz Bedene Martin Klizan