Wednesday at the Gonet Geneva Open 2023 was one of those days where the tournament favourites saunter into their post-match press conferences, all smiles and satisfaction, and say things like, “It was a great day at the office”. No.3 seed Alexander Zverev (ATP 27) was in that frame of mind on Tuesday night, and on Wednesday evening it was the turn of the No.1, 2 and 4 seeds. Two-time defending champion Casper Ruud (ATP 4) had every reason to be pleased with himself after making short work of the USA’s J.J. Wolf (ATP 49) and his tricky, quirky game, the Norwegian winning in straight sets, 6-3 7-5.
“J.J. is a player who hits the ball very hard and plays very fast,” said Ruud. “He was a dangerous opponent and I’m happy I made a strong start and finish to the match [Ruud forced breaks at the start of the opening set and right at the end of the second.] It felt really good out there and I’m delighted to be back playing in front of the Geneva fans, who always give me a very warm welcome.” Earlier in the day, wild card Grigor Dimitrov (ATP 33) turned in a near-perfect display to see off Spain’s Roberto Carballes Baena 6-1 6-3. “I feel really good,” commented the 32-year-old Bulgarian afterwards. “I really love Geneva too. I love walking by the lake and discovering new things. Everyone – the volunteers, the fans, the organisers – has been lovely to us.” Now back to something like his best, Dimitrov will be one of the players to watch in the last eight.
As for Taylor Fritz (ATP 9), he had to work a little harder to shake off fellow American Marcos Giron (ATP 74) in three sets, 4-6 6-2 6-3. While not truly happy with his overall performance on the night, he at least has some good vibrations from the closing two sets to take into his quarter-final against Ilya Ivashka (ATP 86). “I’ve never played him before,” said the Californian. “I think I’ll take a little look at his game before I go to bed tonight.”