Saturday, February 7, 2009
Gonzalez will defend his title
VINA DEL MAR, Chile -- Fernando Gonzalez will defend his home title in the Movistar Open after defeating qualifier Pablo Cuevas of Uruguay 6-3, 6-2 in the semifinals Saturday night.
The top-seeded Gonzalez will take on 2006 champ Jose Acasuso, the No. 4 seed who overcame second-seeded Tommy Robredo of Spain 5-7, 6-2, 6-4 earlier.
Gonzalez will play for his fourth Movistar title in his sixth home final.
"I'm playing better and better every day," he said. "I feel super well and confident for tomorrow, but if Acasuso beats me (Sunday), I know the cup will still be in good hands."
Gonzalez beat Cuevas in the semifinals for the second straight year, this time in convincing fashion. After one break decided the first set, he broke twice to lead 4-0 in the second when he appeared to be angry at Cuevas for hitting him in the back.
It will be the 22nd final on the ATP Tour for Gonzalez, who's 7-2 against Acasuso. Gonzalez has won 10 titles, including Vina del Mar in 2002, '04 and '08.
After losing the first set, Acasuso broke Robredo's serve twice to force a third set. The Argentine, who didn't play last month because of a right shoulder injury, then broke second-seeded Robredo for the match after more than two hours, evening their career matchups at 3-3.
"It was a very hard match, as it always is when I play Robredo," Acasuso said. "I'm very happy because this was my first tournament this year and it's proving to be a very good start."
The final will be his 11th on the tour. His third and most recent title was here three years ago.