World No. 8 Casper Ruud insisted it wasnt easy against 33rd-ranked Dusan Lajovic at the ATP Cup. Ruud, who captured five titles last year, made a winning start to his 2022 season as he beat Lajovic 6-3 7-5. Filip Krajinovic beat Viktor Durasovic in the opening match of the tie so the pressure was on Ruud to deliver and level the tie for Norway.
“It was a high-quality match from the beginning until the end,” Ruud said in his on-court interview, per the ATP Cup website. “Near the end I got a bit nervous. When you are trying to close out the match it is normal.
I haven’t been playing matches for four or five weeks now, so it is a bit difficult to get that rhythm going. I am very happy to get my first win and I am starting my year off well”.
Ruud escaped with a straight-set win
Ruud blew two break points in the second game but also saved a break point in the seventh game.
After saving a break point, Ruud broke Lajovic and served out for the opener in the eighth game. After blowing two match points on his serve in the 10th game of the second set, Ruud broke Lajovic for the third time in the second set and served out for the match in the 12th game.
Before the tournament started, Ruud explained why he may feel pressure at the ATP Cup. "“I have three good matches to start the year, so I'm just happy to get to play some matches again,” Ruud said in Norway’s pre-tournament press conference.
“Hopefully I can bring some wins for the team. I'm not going to think too much about the pressure, but I'm coming here a better player than two years ago, so I will maybe feel some pressure." Unfortunately for Norway, they lost to Serbia on the opening day after Nikola Cacic and Krajinovic beat Ruud and Durasovic in the decisive match.