INTERVIEW: Champion Ruud addresses crowd

Casper Ruud lifted his ninth career ATP trophy on Sunday. Nearly half of those triumphs have now come in Switzerland.

In a clash of the top two seeds, the world No. 5 successfully defended his Swiss Open Gstaad trophy by battling past 2018 champion Matteo Berrettini, 4-6, 7-6 (4), 6-2, in two hours and 34 minutes. Ruud’s win snapped the Italian’s 12-match win streak and in turn, saw him move to 16-0 in Switzerland (all clay wins).

“The Swiss crowd helps me a lot. Everything about Switzerland reminds me a little bit about Norway. Except that you pay less taxes here,” the top seed charmed during his on-court interview.

Berrettini made the first move in the fifth game when Ruud hit his forehand wide off a serve +1. And after saving three break points to consolidate, it appeared the No. 2 seed’s serve was unbreakable as he won 32 of his next 36 points at the line.


Ruud improved to 35-13 in 2022, adding to title runs in Buenos Aires and Geneva.

Ruud improved to 35-13 in 2022, adding to title runs in Buenos Aires and Geneva.

In the second set, Ruud was forced to stave off two break points at 1-1—and another at 4-4 with a clutch forehand winner up the line—to keep pace with the 2021 Wimbledon finalist. Berrettini began the tiebreak with a mini break, but missed consecutive forehands wide on the next two points—and Ruud capitalized on the miscues to level.

In a tense opening game of the decider, Berrettini fought off three break points and another trio of forehand unforced errors to hold. That shot soon proved to be his downfall however, when four forehand misfires saw him drop serve for the first time at 1-1. Ruud imposed himself with consistent depth and an increased success rate on serve to stretch his lead to 5-1. The 23-year-old crossed the finish line when his opponent’s backhand return sailed long.

“I changed up a little bit in the third set especially, which helped. The games and the points here go by fast if you’re not ready and focused. You can get broken, or break fast, because the conditions allow you to,” said Ruud.

“It was key for me to hold serve in the second set. [Saving] those break points was very important for me. The tiebreak, everything went in my favor. I tried to keep that momentum going in the third set.”

Ruud inched ahead 3-2 in the pair’s head-to-head series.