ATP Gstaad: Fabbiano, Vesely, Stebe, Andujar and Carballes Baena advance


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ATP Gstaad: Fabbiano, Vesely, Stebe, Andujar and Carballes Baena advance

After a battle that lasted for almost two hours, Thomas Fabbiano toppled world no. 386 Sandro Ehrat 6-4, 7-5 for a winning start in Gstaad. Thomas claimed four points more than his rival, fending off ten out of 12 break points and earning four breaks to mover over the top and advance into the second round.

A home player made the best possible start, delivering two easy holds and a break in game two for a 3-0 lead before Fabbiano shifted into a higher gear, rattling off six of the next seven games for a 6-4 after breaks in games five and nine.

Ehrat wasted six break chances in the second game of the second set before taking a break at 3-2, looking good to force a decider. Instead of that, the Italian started to play better and pulled the break back in the very next game, earning another one at 5-5 to forge a crucial advantage before holding at 15 in game 12 to cross the finish line.

After a solid Wimbledon run, Jiri Vesely clinched a win in Umag and repeated that here in Gstaad, overpowering Ernests Gulbis 7-5, 7-5 in an hour and 32 minutes for the third victory in as many encounters against the Latvian.

The Czech saved four out of six break points, stealing Gulbis' serve four times to prevail in straight sets despite being 5-3 down in the opener, breaking back at love in game nine and taking the last four games to steal the set.

There were no breaks of serve in set number two until 5-5 when Jiri claimed the crucial game that carried him in front, sealing the deal with a hold at 15 for a 7-5 and to stay on the title course. Using a protected ranking, Cedric-Marcel Stebe celebrated the first victory in the ATP tournaments since the US Open 2017, taking out the 8th seed Corentin Moutet 6-4, 6-4 in an hour and 20 minutes.

The German played better in the most important moments, suffering two breaks and securing four on the other side to emerge at the top, coming from a 4-2 deficit in the first set and closing the second with back-to-back breaks that propelled him through.

The 7th seed Pablo Andujar had a solid day at the office as well, toppling a qualifier Dennis Novak 6-1, 3-6, 6-3 in an hour and 48 minutes. The more experienced player held everything under control in sets one and three, getting broken twice and fixing that with four successful return games for the place in round two.

The 6th seed Roberto Carballes Baena battled past the veteran Paolo Lorenzi 6-7, 6-3, 6-2 in over two and a half hours, establishing the order in set number two and carrying that momentum into a decider where he saved all four break points to leave Lorezni behind.