The 2015 Geneva Open, an inaugural event on the ATP Tour, is now complete. Brazil’s Thomaz Bellucci, a player who has not won a title since the 2012 season, claimed what is now his fourth ATP title following five match-wins in Switzerland over the last several days. With 250 ranking points heading his way, times seem to be improving for the former French Open fourth rounder. However there is still good reason to be skeptical of Bellucci’s chances in upcoming events on tour.
While those in Brazil might be thinking that Bellucci is returning to his best tennis, Geneva 2015 has to be called a relatively uncontested event. Pre-tournament, the favorites appeared to be Stanislas Wawrinka and Marin Cilic, the top two seeds in the event. However with the French Open looming perhaps both players were more focused on preparing for that event as Wawrinka fell to Federico Delbonis and Cilic fell to Santiago Giraldo.
In fact the Geneva draw was full of upsets as only one seeded player made the semifinals, runnerup Joao Sousa. In many ways the inaugural Geneva event was less like your standard 250-series tournament and more like a 125-series challenger event.
Bellucci’s draw went through Marcos Baghdatis, Denis Istomin, Albert Ramos-Vinolas, Santiago Giraldo, and Joao Sousa. That’s as much of a free pass to a title as you can expect on tour as even the 250-events usually feature at least one top 25 player in the final. But ATP Geneva 2015’s final didn’t even have a top 50 player in it and Bellucci went through the entire tournament without facing anyone in that category.
Looking ahead for Thomaz, the French Open looms. Some might feel optimistic of his chances of putting a little bit of a dent in the draw following clay court success in Switzerland. However winning a title in the week before a Grand Slam, thanks to the affiliated fatigue and bruises, often sets you up for failure in the next week. Bellucci should still win his first round match against Marinko Matosevic but Kei Nishikori, or even Paul-Henri Mathieu, should eliminate the Brazilian in the second round.
In other tennis news, Dominic Thiem won ATP Nice through a very difficult draw that included Nick Kyrgios and John Isner. The Austrian could use some rain in Paris to help get him some rest before he opens play at Roland Garros. However Thiem, who is looking more and more like a future Top 5 player, is one to watch in Paris as he is a dark horse on the softer side of the draw (ie. Federer’s side).