Nadal-Killer Garcia-Lopez Wins Thailand Open at Bangkok
World No. 53-ranked Spaniard Guillermo “G-Lo” Garcia-Lopez made good on his semifinal upset of world No. 1 Rafael Nadal, on Sunday defeating Jarkko Nieminen 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 for his second career title at the Thailand Open.
In the semifinals G-Lo saved 24 of 26 break points against Nadal. In the final, after blowing a 3-1 lead in the final set, G-Lo was denied on a couple of match points on Nieminen’s serve in the 10th game before finally closing out the match.
“I think I played relaxed, enjoyed my game and everything was perfect,” the 27-year-old G-Lo said. “It’s hard to express what it means, I’m really happy inside.” Nieminen beat No. 7 seed and 2009 finalist Viktor Troicki and No. 3 Jurgen Melzer en route to the final. “I had a great week,” Nieminen said. “I had some chances in the first set but he came up with some great points. He lifted his game again in the third set. I gave everything and it wasn’t enough for me today.”
Comeback King Youzhny Wins Kuala Lumpur Title
Russian Top 10er Mikhail Youzhny came from a set down to defeat Andrey Golubev 6-7(7), 6-2, 7-6(3) in the final of the Malaysian Open at Kuala Lumpur on Sunday. It was the third consecutive day that the Russian had won from a set down, also against Marcos Baghdatis in the quarterfinals and Igor Andreev in the semis.
“It was four very tough matches for me,” said the 28-year-old, who was also extended to three sets in his first match. “It was my first tournament indoors after the US Open Series and for me it was good. I cannot say I showed by best tennis here, but, although it’s good when you show your best tennis and win the tournament, it’s probably better sometimes when you don’t show your really best game but you have a really good result.”
The win was a boost for the No. 9-ranked Youzhny, who is looking to qualify for the ATP year-end championship for the first time. Golubev beat No. 5 Robin Soderling and No. 11 David Ferrer en route to the final. “I played very good matches against Soderling and Ferrer, that’s why I was a little bit down. I needed the set to relax, to get some energy for the third set. He played very good points, at 4-4, 15-30 I had chances to maybe break him, but he played well. In the tiebreak at 4-3, the next two points decided it.”
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