Carreño Busta starts title defense with solid win over Kicker
Pablo Carreño Busta got his title defense off to a great start with a straight sets win over Argentinian Nicolas Kicker. The Spaniard, ranked 11th in the world, needed one hour and 28 minutes to secure the 6-1, 7-5 victory.
In the first set, Carreño Busta overpowered Kicker in a landslide, notching three breaks to race to a 6-1 win. However, in the second set the Argentinian raised his level and put the reigning champ on the ropes, threatening a decider. Ultimately, Carreño Busta got the crucial break that allowed him to secure his first victory this year on the Portuguese clay.
“The first matches are always important. It’s not easy to start any tournament, especially against a player who is strong on this surface. I think that my level was quite high in the first set but in the second I lost a bit of intensity and didn’t play as aggressively so he started to feel more comfortable. Overall I’m happy with my level throughout the match and hopefully I’ll improve in the next rounds,” said Carreño Busta.
The 2017 champion and runner-up in 2016, Carreño is looking to reach the semi finals in Clube de Ténis do Estoril for the fourth consecutive year. In order to achieve this the Spaniard will have to overcome Chilean Nicolas Jarry in the next round. Jarry defeated Ricardo Ojeda Lara of Spain 6-3, 7-6 (6) in the final match of the day on Estádio Millennium.