In the end, even the frenzied Basel crowd couldn’t help Wawrinka anymore. In a thrilling second-round tiebreak, 38-year-old Romand left two set points unused. For his part, Shevchenko took advantage of the third match point after 105 minutes to make the score 6:3, 7:6 (10:8). The 22-year-old newcomer did so with his signature shot, the long backhand.
The Russian looked impressively calm. He quickly got over his initial nervousness and began showing off his skills. Wawrinka, who was competing in Basel for the 16th time, was a disappointment for long periods. He showed weaknesses upon his return and struggled with himself.
Wawrinka improves after a false start
After a completely unsuccessful opening set with 3 service drops, Wawrinka improved significantly in the second round, but could not find a way to counter the qualifying serve from Rostow. Getting along with the fans at St. Jacobshall, which took him to the quarter-finals in 2022, almost extended his life in the tournament a little. But in crucial moments, Wawrinka lost his killer instinct.
For Shevchenko, the journey continues along the Rhine curve. In the round of 16, he will face Taylor Fritz (USA / ATP 9) or Max Purcell (Australia / ATP 43). From a Swiss perspective, Wawrinka’s exit is a blow to the neck. After all, Dominik Stricker qualified for the round of 16.
SRF 2, Sport Life, October 24, 2023, 8:20pm; SRF
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