Matteo Berrettini knocked his Wimbledon fears on the head as the Italian booked the final of the ATP Stuttgart event 7-6(7), 7-(5) on Saturday over German Oscar Otte.
Berrettini, who lost the All England Club final a year ago to Novak Djokovic,is playing his first match since March after undergoing a medical procedure on his right hand.
But after last competing in March at Indian Wells, the ATP No. 10 confessed that he worried about regaining fitness in time for the summer grass season.
“I didn’t have flexibility in my little finger, I couldn’t even write,” Berrettini said “I could not handle the racquet.
“I had no strength in the hand and was really unsure about being ready for the grass season.
“But my physio and my team were sure it would get better in time. We all did a great job.”
Berrettini had to fight through a pair of tiebreakers to subdue the 61st-ranked Otte.
The Italian who won the title here in 2019, won his eighth Stuttgart match without a defeat as his opponent saved two match points before taking the loss.
Berrettini said that he likes his matches tight.
“This one was really tough but I’m happy with the result. I play tennis for moments like this.
“Since I was a teenager, many of my matches have been close ones. I’m used to them – I like it when the tension is high, I enjoy it even more.”