Richard Gasquet reached the semifinals of the Geneva Open without losing a single set, but against Joao Sousa, he was never able to win a single. The fault of a reinforced Portuguese and with total success with his monstrous forehand and an ineffective first service from the Frenchman.
Gasquet left his base line
From the first exchanges the tactical scheme was clear. Gasquet was demanding as much as his opponent’s backlog when the latter did everything to turn around and release a slap in the forehand. And thanks to a very good ball length, it was Sousa who won this tactical battle. Pushed too far behind his line, Gasquet could not develop the excellent tennis that was his since the beginning of the week.
Handicapped by a highly inefficient first service (57% but only 48% points behind), Biterrois came under immediate pressure. We saw him release supersonic wings, though. But even if he did balance, make no mistake, he was dominated. Drunk from the blows, he gave his serve twice in the first set when he failed to convert one of the four break points he had secured.
The scenario of the second set was the same, even worse, as Gasquet gave up his engagement in the second match, the second break meant losing the match. Maybe a disguised blessing for Gasquet, who was able to calm himself down for his level of play and who will now be able to recover before attacking Roland-Garros.