Fernando Verdasco, 38, 'confident' he can still win on the ATP Tour

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Fernando Verdasco, 38, 'confident' he can still win on the ATP Tour

Spanish tennis player Fernando Verdasco, 38, believes he can still play well on the ATP Tour and win matches. Verdasco, a former world No. 7, didn't start his season in Australia. Instead, Verdasco -- now ranked at No. 201 in the world -- played two Challengers events in January.

Verdasco, who was granted a wildcard into this week's ATP event in Buenos Aires, kicked off his campaign on Monday with a win over Hugo Dellien 6-4 3-6 6-1. "I had been playing top level tournaments for 18 years, so the transition has been difficult.

But I had to accept it, My elbow and knee have recovered well and now I'm finding my rhythm and gaining confidence. I think I still have the tennis and the energy to win matches on the ATP Tour," Verdasco said, according to We Love Tennis.

Verdasco wins his first ATP match of the year

Verdasco made a positive start to the match, having broken Dellien in the third game of the match. Dellien had his first break point in the eighth game but Verdasco saved to go 5-3 up.

Verdasco routinely served out for the first set in the 10th game. Dellien responded well to losing the first set as he claimed the first break of the second set in the eighth game and served out for the set a game later.

After winning the second set, Dellien broke Verdasco in the opening game of the third set. However, Verdasco kept his focus and broke back Dellien immediately in the following game. Dellien missed out on three game points in the second game and that was the end for him as he never recovered from it.

After losing his serve in the opening game of the third set, Verdasco responded with three breaks in a row to win six consecutive games and seal a three-set win. Verdasco plays next the winner of the match between seventh-seeded Albert Ramos-Vinolas and Thiago Monteiro. It remains to be seen how far can Verdasco go this week in Buenos Aires.