After coming up short twice before, John Millman won his first career ATP title Sunday besting Adrian Mannarino 7-5, 6-1 in the Nur-Sultan final in Kazakhstan.
“It is incredible. I am so happy and relieved,” said Millman. “I just feel very satisfied. It is just a pure moment of satisfaction… That was my third final, third time lucky I guess. These things aren’t easy to win and to do so at a place where I felt so comfortable all week, in terms of the hospitality, makes it really special. To win the inaugural Astana Open is special. I am so happy. It has been a big team effort and I am pumped.”
Millman had entered after two comeback wins including two saved match points in the quarters, and today have to fend off five first set points before taking the last five games of the match.
“Whenever you play Adrian Mannarino, it is always going to be a physical match,” said Millman who improves to 3-0 against the Frenchman. “He makes you work for every point and he is so stingy with his errors. You have to be so low and moving really well because his ball is not really getting up. He is a really good indoor hard court player.
”I had to fight off those early break points and I really managed to win that first set against the momentum of the match. After that, I saw the finish line was in sight. That was really pivotal, to fight off those break points and take that one opportunity at the end of the first set. With that, I managed to carry the momentum throughout the match.”
Mannarino, who hadn’t lost a set coming into the final, slumps to just 1-9 in ATP finals.
“If I knew before coming here that I would play the final, I would be happy with that result,” said Mannarino. “I am pretty disappointed with how I managed the final, especially with my emotions, but overall this is still a good week. Congratulations to John who really played tough today, he was fighting so well and he deserved the title.”
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