GRAND PRIX HASSAN II
Robredo Claims 10th Clay Crown In Casablanca
by ATP Staff|
Spain's Tommy Robredo lifted his 10th clay-court trophy on Sunday at the Grand Prix Hassan II, edging second seed Kevin Anderson 7-6(6), 4-6, 6-3 in Casablanca. The 30 year old has prevailed in eight of his past nine ATP World Tour finals on the dirt.
Robredo celebrated his first title in more than two years, having last triumphed in February 2011 at the clay event in Santiago. The 72nd-ranked Robredo has worked his way back up the Emirates ATP Rankings after being sidelined with a leg injury for five months in 2012. The former World No. 5 fell as far as No. 471 last season.
“I have been practising very well during a month in Barcelona before coming here,” said Robredo. “I knew that I could play a good tournament here and you never know what can happen. I went match by match and kept winning. Today, I was pretty nervous since this is very important for me. I really wanted to win this.
“I'm very happy to win a title again after my injury. It's just great! Those points will help me a lot in the ranking. The goal is to arrive in Roland Garros in the best form possible. After that I will sit down and have a look at my goals.”
Squaring off against Anderson for the first time, Robredo stepped up in the key moments of the deciding set, saving all four break points he faced, including two at 5-3, 15/40 to claim victory in two hours and 19 minutes. Robredo improved to 9-1 in Casablanca and was making his first appearance in 12 years, when he reached the final on his event debut (l. to Canas).
Anderson was contesting his first tour-level final on clay and fell at the final hurdle for the second time this year. The South African also finished runner-up at the Apia International Sydney (l. to Tomic).
“I thought I was in control of the match. I had a lot of chances in the first set,” said Anderson. “I played a loose game to give the break back. And then in the tie-break at 6-all, I played two loose points. I came back and did well in the second. In the third, I had some good momentum, but after suddenly being up, I was down a break. I gave myself some chances to get back in the match. Obviously I'm not too happy with the errors I made on those two break points.
“But there are a lot of positives, which is the main thing I got to look at, as disappointing as it was not to have won it. It's a good start for me on clay. There are still a lot of tournaments.”