Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga saved a match point before beating world No. 6 Tomas Berdych 3-6, 7-6 (8-6), 6-4 in the Marseille Open final to claim his 10th ATP Tour title on Sunday.
World No. 8 Tsonga, who saved five match points in his quarter-final match against Australian Bernard Tomic, was trailing 5-6 in the second-set tie-break, but hit back-to-back aces to push the Czech to a decisive set.
The Frenchman eventually put an end to his losing run against the top-seeded Berdych, having lost their three previous encounters, including the latest in the ATP World Tour finals round-robin in November last year.
The local favorite had two break points in the third set’s third game and broke serve to clinch his second title in Marseille after his 2009 triumph.
Tsonga said after the game he was proud of his resilience having struggled in the two first sets.
“I only focused on survival,” he told a news conference.
“Nothing was going my way. He played far better than me in the first part of the match,” Tsonga said. “He was serving well and my position on the court was bad, but I deserve credit because I never gave up. A lot of players would have done so.”
Tsonga, who lost an epic Australian Open quarter-final to world No. 2 Roger Federer last month in his first event under new coach Roger Rasheed, said this successful week has shown he is on the right path.
“I have been working hard for some time, I make sacrifices. I do everything I can to be on top and I still improve,” he said.
Uncertainty grips next year’s postponed Tokyo Olympic Games: Will there be fans or empty stadiums in 14 months? How will thousands of athletes, staff members and technical officials travel, be housed and stay safe amid the COVID-19 pandemic? And the Tokyo Games are not the only event. China, where COVID-19 was first detected, is to hold three mega-sports events in the year after the Tokyo Olympics are set to close. The World University Games in Chengdu, China, are to open, with up to 8,000 athletes, only 10 days after the Tokyo Games close. Next come the Beijing Winter Olympics beginning on Feb. 4, 2022,
PANDEMIC HYGIENE: Players had their temperatures checked, carried their own equipment and towels, and tapped rackets to congratulate the match winners Alison Riske and Danielle Collins of the US and Australia’s Ajla Tomljanovic were among the winners on Friday, the opening day of a women’s tennis mini-tournament in Florida that offered professional players an opportunity to play amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The WTA women’s tennis tour canceled four more events this week and is not to resume until at least July 20. However, four women ranked in the top 60 in the world turned out for the UTR Pro Match Series event in Palm Beach, which followed a similar event for men two weeks ago. World No. 51 Collins toppled 28th-ranked compatriot Amanda Anisimova
The Rakuten Monkeys remained atop the CPBL table, despite a 5-7 loss to the Uni-President Lions in Taoyuan yesterday, while the CTBC Brothers fell to the Fubon Guardians at the Taichung Intercontinental Stadium. The visiting Guardians blasted three home runs in their 7-3 triumph, helping Dominican pitcher Henry Sosa pocket his second win of the season. Improving his record to 2-2, Sosa sailed through seven innings, allowing six hits while striking out five. He gave up one earned run in the opening frame, with two Brothers relievers mopping up the final two innings. Fubon’s marquee stars, designated hitter Hu Chin-lung and first baseman
Georgian tennis star Nikoloz Basilashvili, ranked 27th in the world, was on Sunday charged with physically assaulting his ex-wife, prosecutors said. A court in Tbilisi charged Basilashvili with perpetrating “violence against a family member committed in the presence of a minor,” before releasing him on US$30,000 bail, prosecutor Natia Guruli said. He faces up to three years in prison if found guilty. Basilashvili’s ex-wife, Neka Dorokashvili, on Sunday told Mtavari TV that Basilashvili “physically assaulted” her on Friday in the presence of their five-year-old son. Basilashvili denied the charges, his lawyer Irma Chkadua said. The 28-year-old won his second ATP Tour title at the China