Cilic Wins Moscow, Secures Year-end Championship Berth; Pavlyuchenkova Perseveres
US Open champ Marin Cilic used the week at the Kremlin Cup in Moscow to shore-up a spot at the year-end championships, in the Sunday final defeating No. 5 seed Roberto Bautista Agut 6-4, 6-4 for his fourth title of the year.
“After winning such a big tournament as a Grand Slam you have a lot of emotions and it’s important to bounce back and keep going,” Cilic said. “I had a lot of tough matches and I was able to stay in the battle and bring out my best tennis.”
Bautista Agut fell to 2-2 in career finals.
In the women’s final No. 6-seeded Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia outlasted unseeded Romanian Irina-Camelia Begu 6-4, 5-7, 6-1 for her second title of the year.
Pavlyuchenkova improved to 7-3 in career finals, and Begu fell to 1-3. Pavlyuchenkova is the first Russian to win the Moscow title in seven years.
“I just needed to stop thinking about the score and go for it,” she said. “I’m happy I could regroup in the third set and win this title at home. I’m extremely happy.”
Murray Raises Year-end Chances with Vienna Crown
Andy Murray improved his chances for a year-end championships berth on Sunday, defeating fellow Masters-chaser David Ferrer 5-7, 6-2, 7-5 for the Erste Bank Open title in Vienna, Austria.
“The next few weeks are extremely important,” Murray said. “Everyone is playing next week. I just need to win as many matches as possible to keep hold of the eighth spot or go higher.”
Murray improved his lead to 110 points ahead of the No. 9 Ferrer. The Spaniard led 5-3 in the third before losing the final four games. “I have reached the final, so it is positive,” Ferrer said. “Andy played more aggressively than I did in the crucial moments and he deserved to win.”
Berdych Downs Dimitrov in 3-Set Stockholm Final
Top-seeded Tomas Berdych upheld his seeding in the If Stockholm Open final, edging No. 2 seed Grigor Dimitrov 5-7, 6-4, 6-4. The win helped Berdych’s chances of qualifying for the year-end championships, where he currently sits at No. 7 in the standings.
“It’s the first and only tournament I’ve won twice,” said the 2012 winner. “I feel at home here.”
Dimitrov was the defending champion. It was Berdych’s 10th tour-level title and fourth straight on indoor hardcourts. Dimitrov also remains in contention for the year-end championships.
German Beck Wins Maiden WTA Title in Luxembourg
Unseeded German Annika Beck won her first WTA title a year after reaching her first WTA final on Sunday, defeating No. 4 seed Barbora Zahlavova Strycova of the Czech Republic 6-2, 6-1, in the championship match at the BGL BNP Paribas Luxembourg Open.
“I played the final last year and I said I’d do anything to win the title this year, and it’s an unbelievable feeling to actually do it,” said the 20 year old. “I enjoyed every moment I had on the center court.”
Beck did not drop a set en route to the title. Zahlavova Strycova fell to 1-4 in WTA finals.
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