Bastad, Sweden – Spain's Nicolas Almagro denied Robin Soderling a second straight title in his native country with a three-set win in Sunday's final of the Swedish Open.
Almagro earned a 7-5, 3-6, 6-2 victory over the top-seeded Soderling for his sixth career ATP Tour title and first since winning in Acapulco in February of 2009.
"It's a great feeling to win here," said Almagro. "It's always amazing to win a final and I'm very happy with the week. I'm going to enjoy this moment and then prepare for next week in Hamburg."
Soderling fell to 5-10 all-time in ATP finals, including 1-3 this year. He won in Rotterdam back in February before losses in Barcelona and the French Open prior to Sunday's setback.
Almagro, who lost to Soderling in the second round of the Madrid Open earlier this year, broke serve in the 11th game of Sunday's match and held serve in the next game to take the first set.
Soderling regrouped and won the first three games of the second set on the way to forcing a decisive third. Almagro, though, gained the crucial break for a 4-2 lead and won the next two games to close it out.
"I played OK in the second set but I gave away a break in the decisive set, and that's why I lost the match," noted Soderling. "I was very disappointed after having lost in the final."
Almagro, seeded fourth this year, lost to fellow Spaniard David Ferrer in the 2007 Bastad final. He is 6-2 all-time in ATP title matches.
"I didn't play very well in the 2007 final here, but today I fought very hard and I'm really happy with the physical and mental sides to my game," Almagro added. "It was a big match, a big fight and we were both battling like gladiators. Robin is a great player and I'm sure he will have many more chances to win this tournament in the future."
Soderling and Almagro have now split six all-time meetings.