“Probably the most special so far,” Felix Auger-Aliassime gets emotional after winning the Swiss Indoors title over Hubert Hurkacz

The Canadian won his first title of the season as he successively defended his crown in Basel.


“Probably the most special so far,” Felix Auger-Aliassime gets emotional after winning the Swiss Indoors title over Hubert Hurkacz

Felix Auger-Aliassime of Canada with the trophy after his win against against Hubert Hurkacz of Poland of the mens singles final match on day nine of the Swiss Indoors (Via Imago)

Defending champion Felix Auger-Aliassime, 6th seed, announced his return to the top tier of men’s tennis after a statement win against Hubert Hurkacz, 4th seed, in the final of Swiss Indoors in Basel on Sunday. The Canadian No.1 defeated the Pole 7-6(3), 7-6(5) in just under 2 hours to win his 5th career ATP title and the first this year. With the win, Auger-Aliassime has improved his head-to-head against Hurkacz to 3-1 and this year’s win-loss record to 22-18.

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The match had no breaks of serves but the Canadian, in particular, was dominating on his serve, losing just nine service points across both sets. Although the scoreline may make the encounter look close, Auger-Aliassime was fairly dominant and in control of the summit clash. In the second set, Hurkacz struggled with a probable left leg injury but did fairly well to keep his serve and, in turn, keep himself in the match.

I came here for the first time when I was 17.. it was a pleasure for me. This means a lot. Ups and downs in the year. But for me, this win is extra special. Probably the most special so far in my career. It’s a pleasure for me that it happened in front of you today.
Auger-Aliassime in the post-match interview.

While some may feel that he went over the top with this statement, the reality is that the importance of this win can’t be understated. Not least because of the fact that it came against an in-form Hurkacz coming on the back of his second Masters title win at Shanghai Masters.

The Canadian has had a really dismal 2023 season so far, even more so if compared to his breakthrough season last year. Just to highlight his record this season, this is just the second time he has made the semi-final this year, with the first one coming at the Doha Open in February.

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At the China Open, earlier this month, the 23-year-old managed to win back-to-back games for the first time since March. In addition to that, this is the first time he has managed to string 5 consecutive victories since winning the tournament in Basel last year.

Felix Auger-Aliassime announces that he is back after getting his first title of the season

I’m definitely back. I let my racquet talk. That's always been the motto of my career. I've had the conviction that I can be a top player since I'm a kid, but there were many doubts this year about my performances. 

The win ensured that the 23-year-old Canadian kept his top-20 ranking. He further added that although he never doubted his level it was good that he confirmed it on that court.

Felix Auger-Aliassime
Felix Auger-Aliassime celebrating his title win (Image via @TheTennisLetter/’X’)

On the other hand, the loss has dented a crushing blow to Hurkacz’s chances of making it to the ATP Finals to be played in Turin, Italy. Currently 9th in the ATP race to qualify for the year-end championship with 3065 points, the title win would have pulled him to within 15 points of eighth-placed Holger Rune, at 3280 points, in the battle for the final qualifying spot.

Next up, the duo will play their respective first-round matches at the Paris Masters on Tuesday. The Canadian has been drawn against the German pro Jan-Lennard Struff while the big-serving Pole will face off against Sebastian Korda in what would be a tough first-round clash.

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