Pablo Carreno Busta of Spain overcame 16-time tour-level titlist and winner of three Grand Slams, Stan Wawrinka of Switzerland, 7-5, 6-4 in the opening round of the Nordea Open — an ATP 250 event — here.
The fifth-seeded Carreno Busta claimed a break in each set to prevail in a high-quality encounter against the former world No. 3, who showed flashes of his trademark groundstrokes in just his sixth tour-level tournament since missing 13 months with a foot injury.
“It was a very tough match for me in the first round,” Carreno Busta was quoted as saying by atptour.com. “Against Stan it is always very difficult to start the tournament, so I’m happy because I thought my level was good. I played very solid from the baseline. It was a bit difficult with the wind, but I thought my serve was very good throughout the match. It was very important to my game.”
The 31-year-old Carreno Busta has endured a tough run on the clay of late, going 1-4 on the surface since reaching the final at the Barcelona Open in April. Yet despite Wawrinka firing 10 aces and winning 90 per cent of points behind his first serve to keep the Spaniard under pressure in Sweden, Carreno Busta was clinical in converting two of his six break point opportunities to triumph in one hour, 24 minutes.
It is the Spaniard’s maiden ATP Tour victory against Wawrinka, whose three previous triumphs against the Spaniard included a semifinal victory at the 2017 BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells.
Carreno Busta has reached the quarterfinals twice in four previous appearances in Bastad, and he will attempt to make that three from five in a second-round clash with countryman Albert Ramos-Vinolas or Argentine qualifier Tomas Martin Etcheverry.
Also on Monday, Laslo Djere of Serbia produced an impressive all-around display to ease past Italian Lorenzo Musetti 6-3, 7-5. Djere’s second-round opponent will be seventh seed Holger Rune or Swiss qualifier Marc-Andrea Huesler.