Richard Gasquet Back to a Happy Hunting Ground in Estoril: ‘It’s windy, I love it’

Richard Gasquet ATP Estoril
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Richard Gasquet has been a mainstay on the ATP for about 20 years, spending a lot of time in the top 10 (including a World Tour Finals appearance) with several deep runs at Slams and Masters 1000s. When it comes to title success, though, it has all come at ATP 250 level. All 15 of his career titles coming at this level. One of them came in Estoril in 2015, when he beat Nick Kyrgios in the final. He also reached two other finals here, losing in 2007 to Novak Djokovic and in 2012 to Juan Martin del Potro.

The 35-year-old Frenchman has been struggling with injuries in recent years and hasn’t had a deep run at ATP level since he lost to Carlos Alcaraz in the final of Umag last year. But a return to Estoril is always a good sign for Gasquet, who confessed after his second round win against Hugo Dellien to love the conditions at this tournament. “It’s windy, I love it.”

Richard Gasquet into Estoril Quarterfinals

While he’s not the favorite to win the title this year, he certainly has a realistic chance to do so and start climbing back up the rankings. Gasquet is not the player he once was, but he’s still (when healthy) much better than his current ranking of #80. In fact, in the first round here he overcame #34 Tommy Paul (albeit on a surface Paul is not comfortable on) in relatively comfortable fashion. A quarterfinal against Sebastian Baez presents an opportunity to reach a first ATP level semifinal since last summer. If he wins that one, he then faces either Albert Ramos or the even more veteran Fernando Verdasco, who’s also looking to have a great week here to start his climb back up the rankings.

Of the “golden generation” of French tennis, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga has announced retirement, while Gilles Simon is showing no signs of life. Only Gael Monfils still remains a top player, but Gasquet is sporadically showing signs that he can at least remain competitive at ATP 250 level for a while yet if his body allows it. It will definitely be one the most interesting stories to follow in the next few days at Estoril.

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