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Popyrin fights back to win maiden ATP title in Singapore

Reuters logo Reuters 2/28/2021
a man wearing a hat: Tennis - Australian Open - Third Round © Reuters/KAI PFAFFENBACH Tennis - Australian Open - Third Round

(Reuters) - Australia's Alexei Popyrin stormed back from a set down to beat Alexander Bublik of Kazakhstan 4-6 6-0 6-2 and clinch his first ATP Tour title at the Singapore Open on Sunday.

Popyrin fired 11 aces and broke serve five times to hand fourth seed Bublik -- who is still searching for his first title -- a fourth defeat in a final.

"We put in a lot of hard work in pre-season and it's paying off," Popyrin said in an on-court interview.

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"Also my family behind the scenes ... they've sacrificed so much for me and to finally win a tournament just shows how much hard work they put in with me also and this is for them, this is for them 100 per cent."

The 21-year-old, who upset Marin Cilic in the last-four, made a slow start and dropped the opening set but produced an instant response, breaking Bublik's serve three times in the second to hand out a rare bagel.

The former junior French Open champion did not let up in the third, surging to a 4-2 lead before closing out the victory when Bublik double faulted.

He becomes the second player to win a maiden title this year after Briton Dan Evans triumphed at the Murray River Open.

(Reporting by Arvind Sriram in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge)


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