Rising Argentine star Juan Manuel Cerundolo was absolutely thrilled after completing his dream week at the Cordoba Open with a title. Cerundolo, 19, who won three qualifying matches to make the Cordona main draw, beat experienced Spaniard Albert Ramos-Vinolas 6-0 2-6 6-2 in the Cordoba final to lift his maiden ATP title.
The 19-year-old Argentine, who was ranked at No. 335 last week, rose to a career-high ranking of No. 181 in the world following his win in Cordoba. “It’s kind of incredible. I can’t believe it,” Cerundolo said, per the ATP website.
“I’m so happy to [win] this tournament and [achieve] this goal that I was hoping would happen sooner or later. But I can’t believe it. There’s so many things in my head right now that I can’t express all of them.
The only thing I can say is that I’m very happy and I’m going to enjoy this night”.
Cerundolo delivered in the decider
Cerundolo was showing no signs of pressure of playing in his first ATP final as he claimed three breaks and lost no service games to bagel Ramos-Vinolas in the opener.
After easily losing the first set, former world No. 17 Ramos-Vinolas bounced back with a strong second-set performance as he broke Cerundolo twice to force a decider. After winning the second set, Ramos-Vinolas made a great start to the third set as he got off to a quick 2-0 lead.
However, Cerundolo kept his focus and bounced back with three consecutive breaks to win the Cordoba title. “The key was to be mentally stable, because the match was very physical,” Cerundolo said. “He’s very solid with a good backhand and forehand.
I was stable in my head, but in the second set he was [better] than me. In the third set I was able to get on top of him, but the key was to stay mentally stable”.