Basic upends top seed in Sofia

Mirza Basic upends Wawrinka

Diema Xtra Sofia Open, Bulgaria

Men’s Semifinal: [15] Stan Wawrinka (SUI) vs.  [129] Mirza Basic (BIH)

Tennis players are vulnerable coming back from injury. The highest Basic was ever ranked was 109 and he had never beaten a player of Wawrinka’s caliber. He had to qualify for the main draw and although he did defeat Jerzy Janowicz in 2013 when he was ranked 22, Basic has been languishing on the Challenger Tour.  In 2017, he made his first ATP World Tour semifinal in Moscow. He lost though to his fellow countryman, Damir Dzumhur, ranked 38th at that time. This is the best year of his career so far and he is riding the wave of confidence that comes from getting to the quarterfinals in Qatar earlier this season. He defeated some quality opponents en route to that quarterfinal showing.

At twenty-six years old, Basic will contest his first career ATP World Tour final. Despite the injury, it was not an easy victory for the Bosnian; he still had to win it. Both players broke once in the first set and it went to a tiebreak, which was won by Basic. The second set should have been won by Wawrinka; however, he fell victim to not being match-tough and squandered his break lead. The Bosnian was tougher mentally and fought his way back in the second set to seize the 7-6(6), 6-4 victory.

It will be a great opportunity for both finalists to get their first title. Marius Copil is ranked 93 and at twenty-seven years old, he too has been getting most of his victories on the Challenger Tour. Unlike his opponent, Copil has been ranked in the top 100; he got to a career high of 74 late last season. Who will seize the moment? The odds favor the Romanian, who is relatively more experienced than his Bosnian opponent.

SOURCE OF IMAGES: (Jack Thomas/Getty Images AsiaPac: Mirza Basic)

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