21 Nov 2017

Junior Masters champ secures maiden pro title

News Article

By Nick Fishpool

Photo: Tytti NuoramoEmil Ruusuvuori (FIN)

"It can be my springboard for the pro circuit," said Emil Ruusuvuori of his triumph at the ITF Junior Masters in China at the end of October and just shy of three weeks later the young Finn has claimed his first pro title.

Competing in his homeland in what was his eighth pro main draw appearance of his career, the 18-year-old Davis Cup player progressed beyond the quarterfinal for the first time having racked up quarterfinal finishes on three prior occasions this year.

Speaking in China, Ruusuvuori also stated: "It’s a huge challenge and that’s going to be such fun," when looking ahead to more pro circuit competitive play and it certainly proved to be a challenge for the teenager.

Having drawn the eighth seed Jonathan Mridha in round one, Ruusuvuori survived a fightback to secure victory with two tiebreak wins either side of second set loss.

The Finn then dropped just one game in round two which set up a quarterfinal versus another seeded player in Frenchman Albano Olivetti.  The fourth seed though was seen off in straight sets and a first pro semifinal would bring him up against the top seed from Egypt, Mohamed Safwat.

A tiebreak saw Ruusuvuori take four points to fall behind but, in another tense set, he drew level with a 75 win to force a third and decisive set.

With a place in the final at stake, Ruusuvuori upped his game and dominated the final set, dropping just the one game.

In the final, Ruusuvuori again fell behind with the third seeded Evgeny Karlovskiy taking the first set 64. Forced to make another comeback, Ruusuvuori once more rose to the challenge, and in some style.

The following two sets of the final saw Ruusuvuori in no mood to hang about and he reeled off twelve of the next thirteen games to earn a 46 60 61 victory and with it a maiden pro singles title.