Llodra lifts second title of season in Rotterdam success
Michael Llodra joined Andy Murray as the only players to win two titles apiece so far this season with a 6-7 (3-7), 6-3, 7-6 (7-4) comeback over Robin Soderling to claim the ABN-AMRO World Tennis on Sunday.
25 February 2008
ROTTERDAM - Michael Llodra joined Andy Murray as the only players to win two titles apiece so far this season with a 6-7 (3-7), 6-3, 7-6 (7-4) comeback over Robin Soderling to claim the ABN-AMRO World Tennis on Sunday.
"This was the biggest win of my career and one of my best matches after coming from a set down," said the 27-year-old who won Adelaide to start the season.
"I was tired this morning but I tried to stay relaxed. Anything can happen in a tiebreaker.
"I could not have won this match a year ago," he admitted. "I could never have expected this much.
"But I'm fighting more now on every point and that can change a match."
The number 58 profited at one of only three events on the ATP since 2000 when none of the eight seeds made it to the quarter-final stage.
Llodra is looking for a window of down time after having only four days away from the court between singles and doubles since the start of the season.
His win over the Swede in two hours, eight minutes came in his 23rd match of the season.
"Its been an unbelievable week for me," said the winner, who claimed the Wimbledon doubles title last summer and reached the Australian Open doubles final in January.
"I came here and saw the tough draw (headed by Rafael Nadal and world number four Nikolay Davydenko). Now I'm holding the trophy.
"Its been a dream, it feels a bit strange to win."
Soderling, ranked 59th, was playing for only his second week since missing the last three months of the 2007 season with a wrist injury. He claimed his last title in Milan three years ago.
"My other four matches were against baseliners. Today, we didn't have any rallies, maybe four or five the entire match.
"It was different for sure, there are not many baseliners around anymore."
Llodra joined fellow French player Cedric Pioline and Nicolas Escude as he lifted the fourth trophy at the Ahoy stadium for France. Pioline won in 2000 with Escude following up at the next two editions.
The finalist rained down aces, with Soderling striking 22 and Llodra 15.
[Copyright dpa 2008]
Subject: Dutch news