Pablo Cuevas bags first career ATP title in Sweden

Fitzgerald Cecilio – 4E Sports Reporter

Bastad, Sweden (4E Sports) – World No. 111 Pablo Cuevas claimed his first tour-level crown with an impressive 6-2, 6-1 win over Joao Sousa in the final of the SkiStar Swedish Open Sunday.

Cuevas became the first Uruguayan champion on the ATP World Tour since five-time titlist Marcelo Filippini in 1997 after beating Sousa in just 59 minutes.

Cuevas, who was sidelined for the entire 2012 season following a knee surgery, is also the second Uruguayan to emerge victorious in Bastad, with Filippini prevailing in 1988.

The 28-year-old Cuevas is the third first-time winner this year after Federico Delbonis in Sao Paulo and Roberto Bautista Agut in ‘s-Hertogenbosch. He is the second player outside the Top 100 in the Emirates ATP Rankings to win a title this year.

Meanwhile, Bautista Agut bagged his second title in four weeks with a 6-3, 4-6, 6-2 victory over Lukas Rosol at the MercedesCup.

Bautista Agut improved to 11-1 since mid-June with the win, having also captured his maiden tour-level crown at the Topshelf Open. He now holds a 32-15 match record on the season, already surpassing his win total from a year ago.

The third seed became the ninth Spanish champion in Stuttgart and sixth in the last 10 years, following in the footsteps of Rafael Nadal (2005, 2007), David Ferrer (2006), Albert Montanes (2010) and Juan Carlos Ferrero (2011).

With the win, Bautista Agut is expected to break into the Top 20 for the first time when the rankings are released Monday.

“Since the start of the season, I believed a lot in myself and my work,” Bautista Agut said. “I’ve been playing really well, won a lot of matches and it was only a question of time before this happened.”

In Rhode Island, third seed Lleyton Hewitt defeated Ivo Karlovic, 6-3, 6-7 (4-7), 7-6 (7-3), to win his 30th career singles title at the Hall of Fame Tennis Championships.

The 33-year-old Hewitt joined Roger Federer (79), Rafael Nadal (64) and Novak Djokovic (45) in the list of active players with 30-or-more titles.

On the women’s side, top seed Simona Halep bagged the Bucharest Open title with a 6-1, 6-3 win over second seed Roberta Vinci.

The No. 3-ranked Halep converted five of her 12 break points en route to her eight career title and second this season.

Meanwhile, Andrea Petkovic defeated Shelby Rogers, 6-3, 6-3, in just one hour and 13 minutes to win the Nurnberger Gastein Ladies trophy.

Petkovic captured her fourth career title and second of the season, adding to her triumph in Charleston in April. She won her first career title at this event in 2009.

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