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Rediff.com  » Sports » Karl Beck clinches Tashkent Challenger title

Karl Beck clinches Tashkent Challenger title

October 17, 2010 21:22 IST

Fifth seed Karl Beck of Slovakia capped a wonderful week scoring a close three set win over seventh seed Gilles Muller of Luxemburg to lift the $1,25,000 Tashkent Challenger, an ATP Challenger series event being played at the Olympic tennis Stadium on Sunday.

Beck edged Muller 6-7(4), 6-4, 7-5 in 2 hours 31 minutes.

In the first set 164th ranked seventh seed Muller broke the Fifth seeded and 127th ranked Karl Beck of Slovakia in the third game of the first set , and then saved eight break points in the 4th game to race to a 3-1 lead. Beck held his serve in the fifth game and had a chance to break Muller in the sixth , but Muller played solidly from the base line to hold on and take a 4-2 lead.

Beck broke Muller in the in the eighth game at love and leveled the scores at 4-4,from then on both players held on their serves till the tiebreak. Muller got a mini break in the tiebreak at 4-4 , and then leading 5-4 and finished the set with two brilliant volleys , after a hour long tussle.

In the second and third set both played with extreme caution and display of classical tennis to make it a memorable final for the Tashkent crowds. Despite of Muller serving 18 aces Beck managed to keep his momentum to break Muller in the 9th game in the second set and level scores.

Some solid back court hitting and percentage tennis from Beck saw him keep the momentum , breaking the hard hitting Muller in the 11th game and holding his serve in the 12th game to lift the fourth title of the year.

"It was a really tough match. Gilles was serving very well and it was a long match. I am happy that I was lucky on some points today. I am thrilled, it's a big tournament with higher ranked players; the win earned me a place in the main draw at the Australian Open 2011," Beck said. "It's always difficult to play in the final. It would be better if I could win of course but it's still a big step forward for me, I would love to come back next year," said Muller

The winner gets 125 points and 18000 for the win , while the runners-up had to be content with 75 points and $10600 apart from the gold embroidered Chapan (Uzbek traditional dress).