Sousa Wins, Benneteau on Suicide Watch After ATP Kuala Lumpur Final
Joao Sousa became the first Portuguese player to ever win an ATP tour title on Sunday, defeating No. 5 seed Julien Benneteau 2-6, 7-5, 6-4 in the final of the Malaysian Open in Kuala Lumpur.
Benneteau dropped to 0-9 in career finals after wasting a match point opportunity. “I took my chance, it didn’t pay off and it’s hard, it’s hard, it’s very hard,” said Benneteau, who tweeted a photo of a beer after the match. “But it’s sport.”
The unseeded 24-year-old Sousa upset top seed David Ferrer in the quarterfinals. “I’m so tired mentally and physically but I just feel amazing, it’s just a dream come true, winning my first title here in Malaysia,” Sousa said.
Raonic Edges Berdych for Bangkok Title
Canadian Milos Raonic captured his second title of the year when the No. 2 seed upset No. 1-seeded Tomas Berdych 7-6(4), 6-3 on Sunday in the final of the Thailand Open in Bangkok.
It was Raonic’s second title after his third straight San Jose title in February when he beat Tommy Haas in the final. He improved to 5-4 in career finals, and improved his chances of qualifying in the Top 8 for the year-end Masters event, moving up to No. 11 in the 2013-only point standings.
“In the [first set] tiebreak, it just came down to one return and playing pretty sold after that,” the Canuck said. “I started being more aggressive.” Berdych also said the match came down to just a couple points, and he hardly could have served better throughout. “He was exceptional,” the Czech said. “Basically, the match was about two points. Both of them Milos handled better and so he deserved to win.”
Kvitova Recovers from Bagel to Win WTA Tokyo
Petra Kvitova defeated Angelique Kerber, despite getting bageled in the second set, 6-2, 0-6, 6-3 in the all-lefty final at the Toray Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo.
“In the beginning of the second set I made some easy mistakes and felt slower in my legs, and that’s what Angie was waiting for,” Kvitova said. “After the second set I knew what I had to do — play the same way as the first set, stay aggressive and cut the mistakes down again.”
It was the 11th career title for Kvitova, who a day earlier edged former No. 1 Venus Williams 7-6 in the third in the semifinals. “Everyone has tight matches during a tournament — yesterday we played two and a half hours — but I still felt good today,” Kvitova said. “I don’t think the second set was because of yesterday’s match.” She improved to 11-4 in career finals, and will return to the Top 10 on the WTA rankings. Kerber fell to 2-5 in career finals.
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