Frenchman Lucas Pouille broke through for his first career title on Sunday in France, defeating top-seeded Dominic Thiem 7-6(5), 6-2 for the Moselle Open crown in Metz.
The 22-year-old improved to 30 wins on the year and recorded a fifth win over a Top 10 opponent.
“Winning a title is a big step, it’s an objective I wanted to achieve this year,” the Frenchman said. “It was a well-played final. We both played at a high level.”
Pouille improved to 1-1 in career finals, and Thiem fell to 7-3 in finals.
“I think the first set was a pretty high level from both of us,” said Thiem. “I should have won the tiebreak, but had an easy volley mistake. All in all, he was the better player and had more chances in my service games. He deserved to win today. I think he put pressure on me all the time and was serving really well.
“He’s had an amazing year, reaching the quarterfinals in the last two Grand Slam and semis in the Masters 1000 in Rome. I think we will see him in the Top 10 soon.”
Pouille won his last two matches over the top two seeds, beating No. 2 David Goffin in the semifinals on Saturday then the top-seeded Thiem on Sunday.
The 22-year-old Pouille moves up two spots to a career-high No. 16 this week. Pouille began the year ranked No. 78.
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