ATP Stockholm: Elias Ymer tops Marterer. Main draw berth for Ernests Gulbis

Tennis - Oscar Otte, Alexei Popyrin and Peter Polansky book their places in the main draw too

by Jovica Ilic
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ATP Stockholm: Elias Ymer tops Marterer. Main draw berth for Ernests Gulbis

Competing in Stockholm for the fourth time, the 22-year-old Elias Ymer has scored the second win at home ATP 250 event after a hard-fought 4-6 7-5 7-5 victory against Maximilian Marter in two hours and 35 minutes. Two youngsters have met for the first time on the Tour and Elias repelled eight out of 12 break points, winning 40% of the return points and scoring five breaks from 16 chances to prevail in the closing stages of sets two and three to set Jack Sock clash that he is certainly capable of winning.

The Swede kicked off the match in a strong fashion, serving well and missing break points in games two and four that could have given him the lead. Marterer saved them all he lost just one point on serve by the end of the set, keeping the pressure on Ymer and scoring a break in the ninth game after a forehand winner for a 5-4.

The German secured the opening set with a hold at 15 in game 10, blasting a service winner and looking to keep the same level in the rest of the match. The second set turned into an open war and it lasted for more than 70 minutes, with no less than 20 break points and with back-to-back breaks that kept them locked up close to each other.

They traded breaks in the opening games and it was Ymer who moved 4-2 after a marathon game six, converting the seventh break point before getting broken in the very next game. In the pivotal moment for the entire match, Elias pulled some magic to defend five break points at 4-4 before he was rewarded shortly after, breaking at love in game 12 to push the match into a decider.

Unlike set number two, the decider was fast and fluid and it was Maximilian who had the lead all the time, breaking in the opening game of the set and serving for the win at 5-4. Out of sudden, Ymer found the new strength to break back at love and level the score at 5-5 before he broke Marterer again in the 12th game to scrapes past into the second round. Monday's results:

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Elias Ymer Ernests Gulbis Alexei Popyrin
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