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Tursunov reigns in the rain
Deepti Patwardhan in Mumbai | October 02, 2006 21:47 IST
The temperamental Dmrity Tursunov followed up his epic Davis Cup success by claiming his first ATP title at the Kingfisher Airlines ATP Mumbai Open on Monday.
The Russian beat the Czech Republic's Tomas Berdych 6-3, 4-6, 7-6 (5) in a rain-interrupted final that was a see-saw of emotion.
Mahesh Bhupathi and Mario Ancic captured the doubles title, beating the Indian duo of Rohan Bopanna and Mustafa Ghouse 6-4, 6-7 (6-8), 10-8 in the final.
The doubles and singles finals were postponed after Sunday's wash-out. But rain chose to play spoilsport again on Monday, interrupting the proceedings twice.
The weather also disrupted the schedule of the top players still in the fray at the tournament. Tursunov and Mario Ancic were to travel for the Tokyo ATP, starting on Monday, but had to delay their departure. Tursunov had travelled to Mumbai after a gruelling Davis Cup match against Andy Roddick last Sunday and looked physically drained during the first two rounds.
Slighted indoors without practice for the last two days, both finalists looked out of sorts at the start of the match. Breaks were exchanged in the first two games, but the Russian world No 22 got the better of Berdych in the rallies.
It was indeed a contest about whose temperament was better. The energy and fire that saw Tursunov overcome top seed Tommy Robredo in the semi-final on Saturday was lacking, but he gained from Berdych's errors and broke the Czech in the sixth game to take a 4-2 lead before serving out the set at 6-3 with a service winner.
The rain-break didn't seem to affect the players' touch, but Tursunov was upset with the balls going soft quickly.
Berdych was more forceful in the second set and waited for the Russian to commit the unforced error. He effected a break in the tenth game to take the set at 6-4.
Play was again interrupted again in the third set by light showers. The spectators goaded the finalists to play on but neither wanted to risk injury.
After trading breaks in the seventh and eighth games for 5-5, Tursunov took a decisive 6-5 lead but failed to close out the set. He dished out a poor service game, losing on love.
The tie-break was another close affair, but Tursunov took it 7-5 with a superb backhand down the line to finish the match in two hours and 30 minutes.