Mon, Sep 23, 2013 - Page 20 News List

Lu defeats Bhambri to capture Kaohsiung title

By Tony Phillips

Lu Yen-hsun hits the ball during one of his matches at the OEC Kaohsiung ATP Challenger tournament in Greater Kaohsiung yesterday. Lu, the top seed, won the singles title.

Photo: Huang Chih-yuan, Taipei Times

Home favorite and top seed Lu Yen-hsun won two matches in a day yesterday to land the OEC Kaohsiung ATP Challenger singles title after Typhoon Usagi had prevented play on Saturday.

The Taiwanese No. 1 won his semi-final against No. 6 seed Matthew Ebden of Australia 6-4, 6-4, before beating Indian qualifier Yuki Bhambri 6-4, 6-3 to land the US$125,000 hard-court tournament title in Greater Kaohsiung.

Earlier, the world No. 477 from New Delhi won an epic three-setter against No. 2 seed Jack Sock of the US 6-7 (10/12), 7-5, 6-3 to make the final.

Perhaps the two hour, 49 minute battle took its toll on the 21-year-old Indian Davis Cup player after his exertions in both singles and doubles during the past week. However, the former junior world No. 1 can be pleased about reaching the final, a rare accomplishment for a player who had to qualify to get into the main draw.

Lu will also be happy to have landed his second singles title of year, which he achieved without dropping a set over the course of the tournament. The triumph follows the world No. 64’s victory at a challenger tournament in Beijing in July and was a marked improvement on his quarter-final exit in last year’s Kaohsiung tournament.

Bhambri ended a great week on a down note when he experienced the agony of losing two finals on the same day. He and Taiwanese partner Wang Chieh-fu suffered a straight sets defeat in the doubles title match yesterday evening, with top seeds Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah of Colombia enjoying a straightforward 6-4, 6-2 victory.

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