“Casper was by far a much better player than me” – Prajnesh Gunneswaran

Indian No. 2 Prajnesh Gunneswaran lost the match to World No. 2 Casper Ruud with a scoreline of 1-6 4-6. Some notes from Prajnesh`s interview with Indian Tennis Daily after the match.

Thoughts on the match

Casper played very well. Given the circumstances, there was a lot of responsibility on his shoulders. It is never easy to be the clear favorite and come and deliver. He did a good job holding his nervers.

There were a lot of games where if I played one or two points better, I could have kept the score a bit closer in the first set. I gave away the first break a little too easy.

The second set was much closer. He served well in the important points to not let the games get close. It was a good performance from him.

I had to be a little more aggressive to make chances. I did not do enough of that.

Were there any changes that you made between Set 1 and Set 2?
I tried playing more aggressive in the second set to create more opportunities. I was able to get the set close but it was not good enough.

Did you feel that your backhand was being attacked a bit?
I tend to hit with my forehand a bit more. I made my attacks with my forehand but I did not do well to come in attack and transition after I made those heavy forehands.

Casper has been struggling a bit against lefties. Did you feel it?
Casper Ruud was defending very well. With other players, 2-3 powerful shots may be enough but with Casper, you need to be more consistent. So one needs to be on higher gear throughout the match which is a part mental thing as well.

What do you think of Casper Ruud level right now?
He is extremely consistent. He is making a lot of balls closer to the lines when it matters. Good luck to him in his professional career.

Anything that you could have done differently?
In the first service break at 30-30 where I had a short ball, I kind of missed that point which was a big miss from my side. This gave him a 2-0 lead and it eased him into the match. It was important to guys of this caliber to not give him that early space.

You last played against him in 2018 in German Club tennis. Did that influence your game plan?
Not really. Casper was by far a much better player than me. That match was on clay. I like these conditions much better and so I was looking forward to playing this match. I knew if I played well, I could bring this match close.

Unfortunately I did not deliver the level that was needed from my side.

Indian based in the Alps region. Works for an IT firm during the weekdays und auch lernt Deutsch. On the weekends, he can be traced somewhere in the Mountains or on backpacker trips. Is a Social Worker / Activist with a deeper interest for Indian / Swiss tennis from the past year.

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