Frenchman Jeremy Chardy battled back from a set down to beat Romanian Victor Hanescu 1-6, 6-3, 6-4 in Stuttgart on Sunday and clinch his maiden tour title in style.
Ranked 43rd, the 22-year-old recovered from an error-ridden first set to whip Hanescu, still looking for his second title after winning in Gstaad last year, into submission with his thundering forehand and some clever volleying.
"The match was very difficult and I was very nervous in the first set," Chardy said in a courtside interview. "The third set was also very hard. I felt the pressure because I knew this would be my first title."
Hanescu, ranked 33rd, grabbed an early break in the second game of the match and his high first serve percentage gave the Frenchmen no chance to break back. A second break allowed the Romanian to comfortably serve out the first set.
Chardy, with a forehand that surely must rank among the fiercest on the tour, battled back, pinning Hanescu to the baseline and breaking the 27-year-old for the first time in the sixth game to clinch the second set.
Two breaks allowed the rising French prospect, a losing finalist in Johannesburg earlier this year, to lead 4-0.
Playing smooth drop shots and some deft volleying, Chardy looked set for an easy third set victory.
However the Romanian broke serve in the sixth game and Chardy's lead narrowed to 5-4 before the Frenchman sealed his first title victory with a volley after an hour and 43 minutes.