Fans at the ATP Argentina Open were disappointed by Saturday’s results in Buenos Aires, both on and off court. #8 seed Casper Ruud defeated Argentine Juan Ignacio Londero in the first semifinal. Top-ranked Argentine Diego Schwartzman injured his groin in his quarterfinal match. After testing it out in the morning, he had to withdraw from the second semifinal, sending lucky loser Pedro Sousa into the final. Buenos Aires has had an exciting crowd all week, and the final should not disappoint even without local players.
ATP Argentina Open Final Prediction
Casper Ruud vs Pedro Sousa
Head-to-head: 1-0 Sousa
Casper Ruud and Pedro Sousa meet in an unlikely final. It is their second meeting, both in finals. The first came at the 2018 Braga Challenger, won in three sets by Sousa against a 19-year-old Ruud. It is Sousa’s first ever tour-level final and Ruud’s second. Ruud reached the final in Houston last year, where he lost an incredibly close three set battle to Christian Garin. Ruud is 1-3 in finals, including Challengers, while Sousa has an impressive seven Challenger titles in addition to six runners-up, all on clay. Sousa is a Challenger tour veteran, while Ruud spent limited amount of time there due to his strong results at a young age allowing him to play a primarily ATP schedule. Ruud has a little more to play for than just the title. With a win, he will reach a career high rank of #37. That would make him the highest ranked Norwegian man in history, a title previously held by his father Christian.
Ruud has looked on point this week. Not having played since the Australian Open, he came in with fresh legs and made the most of his extra rest. He did not lose a set in his first three matches, losing just three games or less in all but one of the six sets he played. Juan Ignacio Londero proved a formidable semifinal opponent after taking the first set, but after two competitive sets, Ruud pulled away and won the decider 6-1. Sousa has played well but benefited from several lucky breaks. He earned a lucky loser due to an injury withdraw, and he was especially lucky because due to six of the eight seeded players in the qualifying draw losing in the first round, he was the highest remaining play to lose in the final qualifying round. He also avoided top seed Diego Schwartzman in the semifinal, after the Argentine had to pull out due to a groin injury. To his credit he did have an excellent quarterfinal against the very talented Brazilian Thiago Monteiro, beating him in straight sets.
The match up is intriguing between the two, but Ruud has a significant edge. Sousa has not faced someone this week with the shot-making ability of Ruud, as well as his overall groundstroke-heavy clay court game. Sousa has already lost once this week in Buenos Aires, while Ruud has only lost one set all week. Ruud will be the toughest test for Sousa here, and Sousa will not have quite enough to defeat the Norwegian gunning for his first career ATP title.
Prediction: Ruud in 2
Main Photo from Getty.