Zvarev upsets the home crowd to end Gasquet’s Montpellier reign
Germany’s Alexander Zvarev upset Richard Gasquet and the crowd hoping to see the Frenchman win in Montpellier for the third straight year. Both men got one break each in the first set but the German held his nerve to take the lead in the tie break. Zvarev then broke again in the eight game of the second set to take a 5-3 lead. Zvarev then served out the final game to take his second ATP title after winning in ST Petersburg in September.
Grigor Dimitrov has continued his excellent start to the season with victory on home soil in Sofia in his native Bulgaria. He broke opponent David Goffin in second game to take an early 3-0 lead. Goffin fought back to break but at 5-6 Goffin made a series of errors on his service game allowing Dimitrov to take the first set with his first set point. The second set followed a similar pattern as Dimitrov raced into a 5-1 lead and had 0-40, Goffin saved all three match points then broke back in the next game. However at 5-4 he could not break again as Dimitrov finished the contest at the second attempt. Dimitrov has two titles this year and a grand slam semi final to his name in what is looking a potentially big year.
Victor Estrella Burgos from the Dominican Republic won his third straight title in Ecuador winning a tight contest against Italy’s Paolo Lorenzi. Lorenzi took the first set on a tie break but Burgos hit back to break at the key moment to take the second set 7-5. There were no breaks in the final set went all the way to a tie break which itself went all the way. At 6-6 Burgos got the key mini break and took his match point to continue an extraordinary run of 15 straight wins on the clay courts of Quito. Burgos returns to the top 100 in the World rankings as a result
Richard Gasquet successfully defended his Sud De France Open title he won in 2015 winning an all French final against Paul-Henri Mathieu. Returning from injury that kept him out of the Australian Open, Gasquet struggled in the opening set losing his serve twice but he kept coming back braking his opponent three time himself to take the opener 7-5. Mathieu put up a decent contest in the second set staying with his opponent until it got to 4-5 when he was broken serving to stay in the match. The win was Gasquet’s third tournatment win in four years at the Montpellier venue.
Agut in ruthless form to win in Bulgaria
Spain’s Roberto Bautista Agut was in fine form all week not dropping a set including in the final to take the inaugural Sofia Open in Bulgaria. Agut mixed up his tactics against Serbia’s Victor Troicki using a number of drop shots to try and keep the Serb off balance. The Spaniard got the break in the eighth game and served exceptionally well dropping just five points in the first set. Agut broke straight away at the start of the second set but Troicki broke back immediately. However the Serb was not on level terms for long as Agut broke again in the next game and never looked back, going on to win on his second match point to take the title in straight sets. These two could meet again in the next tournament in Rotterdam in the semi-finals.
Burgos retains Ecuador title
Victor Estrella Burgos retained his Ecuador Open title beating Brazilian Thomaz Bellucci in three sets. The Brazilian took the first set 6-4 but could not close the match out in a second set tie-break which was close all the way through but Bergos got the key mini break to win it 7-5 and create the momentum going into the final set. Burgos broke twice in the final set to take the title 6-2. Ecuador had been kind to Burgos, the only place so far he has won a ranking title. He will hope to add to it as this clay court season continues.