In a match that seemed shorter than the weirdass opera ceremony/performance that preceded it…

…top-seeded two-time defending champion Ricardo Mello defeated Rafael Camilo 6-2 6-1 to win the Sao Paulo Challenger title.  It’s the 2nd-ranked Brazilian’s 13th Challenger championship, which makes him tied for third all time in that category.

Rarely have I seen a match with such an air of inevitablity to it.  “Never in doubt” is often said in a facetious fashion, but this one truly was.  It seemed the big qualifier was out of gas after playing seven matches, saving match points in three, to get to this final.  His groundstrokes misfired badly the entire contest, and the only thing that was keeping him afloat (barely) was his serve.  Once the ball was in play, Mello won 80 percent of the rallies, I’d say.  Maybe even more than that.  The 30 year-old veteran brought power and consistency to the court today.  The 20 year-old Camilo just brought the power – consistency was nowhere to be found.

Still, a great effort this week from the lad (whose older brother is judo champion Tiago Camilo, by the way).

Rafael will see his ranking jump from the upper 400’s to the lower 300’s as a result of his amazing run to the finals of this top $100,000 event.  Alas, they’re still not spelling his name right.

Maybe when he breaks into the Top 300, they’ll get it.

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