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Sebastian Baez defeats Francisco Cerundolo in tennis to get to the Rio final

<p>Sebastian Baez, the fifth-seeded Argentine, advanced to the Rio Open final on Saturday after defeating his countryman Francisco Cerundolo in straight sets.</p>
<p><img decoding=”async” class=”alignnone wp-image-444681″ src=”https://www.theindiaprint.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/02/theindiaprint.com-sebastian-baez-defeats-francisco-cerundolo-in-tennis-to-get-to-the-rio-final-img-5-750×500.png” alt=”theindiaprint.com sebastian baez defeats francisco cerundolo in tennis to get to the rio final img 5″ width=”1079″ height=”719″ title=”Sebastian Baez defeats Francisco Cerundolo in tennis to get to the Rio final 3″ srcset=”https://www.theindiaprint.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/02/theindiaprint.com-sebastian-baez-defeats-francisco-cerundolo-in-tennis-to-get-to-the-rio-final-img-5-750×500.png 750w, https://www.theindiaprint.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/02/theindiaprint.com-sebastian-baez-defeats-francisco-cerundolo-in-tennis-to-get-to-the-rio-final-img-5-1024×683.png 1024w, https://www.theindiaprint.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/02/theindiaprint.com-sebastian-baez-defeats-francisco-cerundolo-in-tennis-to-get-to-the-rio-final-img-5-768×512.png 768w, https://www.theindiaprint.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/02/theindiaprint.com-sebastian-baez-defeats-francisco-cerundolo-in-tennis-to-get-to-the-rio-final-img-5-150×100.png 150w, https://www.theindiaprint.com/wp-content/uploads/2024/02/theindiaprint.com-sebastian-baez-defeats-francisco-cerundolo-in-tennis-to-get-to-the-rio-final-img-5.png 1200w” sizes=”(max-width: 1079px) 100vw, 1079px” /></p>
<p>Under pressure from fellow countryman Cerundolo, Baez faced down three set points at 4-5 in the first set and went on to win 7-5, 6-0 at the ATP 500 late on Saturday. He did not drop another game.</p>
<p>Baez won his first semi-final match above the ATP 250 level thanks to a run of nine consecutive victories. He will take against Argentine qualifier Mariano Navone on Sunday in an attempt to win his fifth and most significant tour-level championship.</p>
<p>Promotion</p>
<p>In the one-hour, twenty-four-minute encounter, Baez saved six straight break points after an early exchange of breaks. ATP Stats show that he won almost half of his return points and capitalized on four of his seven break opportunities.</p>
<p>Aiming to make it to his first final above the ATP 250 level, Cerundolo also struggled, making 39 unforced mistakes, 26 of which came off his backhand wing. He will reenter the Top 20 in the ATP Rankings on Monday despite the defeat.</p>
<p>Baez is aiming for a career high this week as he moves up seven spots to No. 23 in the ATP Live Rankings. If he wins the Rio championship, he might rise to No. 21.</p>
<p>In the second semifinal on Saturday, Navone defeated a physically challenged Cameron Norrie 6-4, 6-2 to cap off an incredible week.</p>
<p>The 22-year-old Argentine took off the reigning champion and second seed, earning the greatest result of his career after claiming his maiden tour-level win earlier this week.</p>
<p>Navone became the first qualifier to reach an ATP 500 final since Jiri Vesely achieved the feat in Dubai in 2022 by defeating his first opponent ranked in the Top 50.</p>

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