Martínez surprises Ruud and will play the final in Estoril

The Spaniard faces Hurkacz this Sunday for the title

April 06, 2024

Millenium Estoril Open

Pedro Martínez had never defeated a Top 10 rival.
By Staff

In October of last year, Pedro Martínez was outside the Top 130, going through one of his worst moments of results in recent seasons. However, the Spaniard has gone from strength to strength until putting the cherry on top this week at the Millennium Estoril Open, where this Sunday he will fight for his second ATP Tour crown.

The now No. 60 in the PIF Live ATP Rankings beat top seed Casper Ruud 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 in three hours and seven minutes to appear in the third final of his career.

“I knew from the beginning that Casper is, for me, one of the best three land players in the world,” Martínez said after his victory against the world No. 8. “If I wanted to win, I had to play my best and it would still be synonymous with winning.”

“I tried to play my game and play aggressively throughout the match, and in the end I am happy to have achieved the victory,” added the Spaniard.

Martínez has had an impeccable week in which he has defeated Daniel Altmaier (first round), Roberto Bautista Agut (second round), Richard Gasquet (quarterfinals) and Ruud (semifinals). In the last round, No. 2 seed Hubert Hurkacz awaits him.

But this result from the 26-year-old Valencian is not an oasis in the desert. He comes to support his growth on the ATP Challenger Tour, where he has achieved a title (Girona) and another final (Tenerife) before appearing in the title match in Estoril.

It was also the first victory of his career against a Top 10 opponent in seven games (1-6), to become the first Spanish finalist in the tournament since Alberto Ramos Viñolas (2021). Nicolás Almagro (2016) and Pablo Carreño Busta (2016, 2017) have also been.

For his part, Hurkacz beat Cristian Garín this Saturday in the Portuguese clay court tournament in the first semifinal 6-3, 3-6, 6-3. The No. 10 in the PIF ATP Rankings stood firm in the decisive set to put aside the first duel recorded by the Lexus ATP Head2Head against the Chilean and seal the victory after one hour and 58 minutes.

In this way, the Pole made his way into the first final of his career on clay. “What a surprise!” Hurkacz acknowledged when asked about his performance on clay. “It’s definitely a great week and it was a tough battle today against Cristian. He is a very good rival and there were many hard moments, but I really enjoyed the support [del público] hoy”.

Hurkacz backed his performance on his great serve. And the Pole kept 75% of the points he put into play with his first serve (39/52), according to Infosys ATP statistics, and he broke Garín’s serve twice in the final set.

With an 18-8 record this year, Hurkacz is chasing his eighth crown this week in Estoril and his first since winning the trophy at the Rolex Shanghai Masters last October.


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