After the semi-finals on Saturday, Jiri Vesely had said, “I will keep focus on my serves.” He stayed true to his word and produced 26 aces to take home the Tata Open Maharashtra title defeating Egor Gerasimov of Belarus 7-6 (2), 5-7, 6-3 in two hours and 11 minutes.
Enjoying healthy crowd support on Sunday at the Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex, Vesely entertained with 12 aces in the first set followed by six and eight in second and third sets respectively. Vesely finished the tournament with 94 aces.
“There are plenty of things to improve. My serving has been great but I believe it can be better. I think one needs to keep improving one’s best shots,” Vesely said.
With this win giving him 250 ATP points, Vesely (520 points) will be back in the top 100 with a possible ranking of 72 when the list in released on Monday. “A top 100 ranking will guarantee entry in a few big tournaments which is my goal this season,” Vesely said.
Trading breaks in the first two games, Vesely and Gerasimov held their serve thereafter to force the first set into the tie-breaker. Vesely, was bang on in the tie-breaker, as he opened up with 3-0 lead. Gerasimov made it 2-3 with an ace but it did not make much impact as Vesely sealed the tie-breaker 7-2 with a forehand.
“It was all about how you use your chances. Serve is crazy because in the last two matches he has hit more than 25 aces. So it was very tough,” Gerasimov said.
In the second set, the score was even till 5-5 before world No 90 Gerasimov broke Vesely’s serve in the 11th game to take control of the set and push the match to the decider.
In the final set, Vesely was on song again as he broke Gerasimov in the second game to take a 2-0 lead. Thereafter Vesely controlled the match. He ensured that he held his serve to script a clinical win. Two aces and a backhand down the line were enough in 9th game to seal the final.
“Once I was broken, it was very tough since he has a very good serve. I could not comeback,” Gerasimov said.
“All the matches throughout the week had been very close, I just ensured how important it is to stay calm in important moments. I have to be realistic. I had lot of luck this week, saving six match points in two successive matches. But I am really happy I worked very hard to lay my hands on the trophy,” Vesely said.
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