[dropcap]W[/dropcap]hen one thinks about Gstaad, the first thing that may spring to mind first is probably the celebrity-filled hideaway nestled in a magnificent valley in Southwestern Switzerland surrounded by the Alps. But there is much more to Gstaad.
Every summer, Gstaad welcomes the Wimbledon of the Alps, a high-level tennis tournament, part of the ATP World Tour 250 series. Since the first days of this tournament, dating back to 1915, the tennis court in Gstaad has hosted the great names in world tennis. Tennis stars such as Yannick Noah, Stefan Edberg, Boris Becker or Roger Federer have passed through the resort and contributed to the international reputation of this tournament. The event is now known as Crédit Agricole Suisse Open Gstaad.
The big surprise of the 2013 edition was the announcement a few weeks ahead of the tournament of the participation of Roger Federer (ATP 5). He returned to Gstaad for the first time since 2004. The remaining tickets of the last weekend of the event sold in less than 24 hours forcing the organizer to extend the court to allow more spectators. The dream emerged of a Swiss final Roger Federer – Stanislas Wawrinka (ATP 10). The two players of the top 10 would however need to win against players like Janko Tipsarevic (ATP 16), Juan Monaco (ATP 20), Feliciano Lopez (ATP 31) or Mikhail Youzhny (ATP 33).
The dream came however to an abrupt end when Roger Federer lost his first-round match against Daniel Brands (ATP 55). Stanislas Wawrinky did not have a much better luck, he had to abandon due to a back injury while playing the quarter-final against Feliciano Lopez.
Russia was honored this year in the Swiss Alps, Mikhael Youzhny crowned “King of the Mountain” at the Gstaad Suisse Open. He became the first Russian champion in 18 years at this tournament. The Moscow native lifted his ninth ATP World Tour trophy as he defeated Robin Haase 6-3, 6-4 in the final.
At the awards, Mikhael Youzhny thanked… Roger Federer, “Thank him for coming”. He knew that if he had the pleasure of playing in a packed stadium throughout the whole week, it was essentially to the venue of Roger Federer.
Next year’s edition is scheduled July 19th – 27th 2014.