Jo-Wilfried Tsonga let his hair down (and out) this week in Rotterdam, on Sunday beating Belgian David Goffin 4-6, 6-4, 6-1 for his 13th career title at the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament.
“The last couple of months I put in a lot of effort to come back to this level,” the afro-ed Frenchman said. “It’s a huge reward for me and it gives me new expectations for the rest of the year. I changed my serve and worked a lot on my backhand and my returns. I also changed my strings. There were many things to improve my game and do things better…In the second set, I had another mentality on court. I was more aggressive and it made the difference.”
The effort ended a two-year title drought for Tsonga. In the third set the Frenchman ran to a 5-0 lead before closing out the championship effort. He was also a Rotterdam finalist in 2011, losing to Robin Soderling in the final.
Tsonga improved to 13-11 in career finals.
The weary Goffin was coming off another finalist effort at Sofia the previous week, and on Monday will debut in the Top 10 on the ATP rankings.
“It was a great week in the end,” said Goffin, who was attempting to end a three-year skid without a title. “There was a lot of emotion this week and I won a lot of matches. I was a bit tired today. I started the final really well, but in the end Jo played better than me, especially in the third set. Of course I’m disappointed, but I played some good tennis and will be in the Top 10 on Monday.”
Goffin dropped to 2-6 in career finals and 0-2 this year, last raising a trophy at Kitzbuhel in 2014.
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