Baghdatis Ousts Nalbandian to Gain ATP Basel Final

Posted on October 30, 2005

20-year-old Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis gained his career-first ATP final Saturday at Lyon with a shocking 6-2, 7-6(3) win over No. 2 seed David Nalbandian.

"I just went on court playing my game, not doing any mistakes or giving any easy points away," Baghdatis said. "For me the game is a bit like chess, you just try to solution of how to beat the other guy. That's what excites me about the game."

In the final the Cypriot will face No. 4-seeded Chilean Fernando Gonzalez, who blitzed No. 5-seeded Dominik Hrbaty 6-0, 6-3.

For Baghdatis the challenge in the final will be not running out of gas after a week of main draw matches and the previous weekend of making it through the qualifying.

"I think I have enough energy left to win one more match," Baghdatis said of the best-of-five final. "I'll try not to get stressed, because I think it will be tough."

After the singles final, Gonzalez and Argentine Agustin Calleri, who defeated the top-seeded Bryan brothers in three sets in the semis, will take on No. 4 seeds and Wimbledon champions Huss/Moodie in the doubles final.

"I was born to be a champion," Baghdatis said. "My father wanted so much for one of his sons to be a champion. My brother also played tennis but was in a car accident at 15. So now I take his steps."