MARRAKECH, April 15, 2018
Pablo Andujar became the lowest-ranked ATP World Tour champion in 20 years on Sunday, beating first-time finalist Kyle Edmund 6-2, 6-2 to win the Grand Prix Hassan II for a record third time.
The 32-year-old Spaniard saved seven of the nine break points he faced, converting six of his own to prevail after one hour and 22 minutes.
— Tennis TV (@TennisTV) 15. April 2018
“I played very well during the whole match,” said Andujar. “Trying to make him move as much as I could. He attacks a lot and is a very strong player. I was very solid today and I’m very happy about that.”
Andujar was World No. 1,824 in the ATP Rankings just two months ago, the result of an elbow injury that required three surgeries. He clinched his first title since 2014 last week on home soil in Villena, lifting the trophy of the Ferrero Challenger Open, and carried the momentum to Northern Africa.
Andujar, currently sitting at World No. 355, is now the lowest-ranked tour-level titlist since Lleyton Hewitt (No. 550) prevailed in Adelaide 20 years ago.
“I always believed that I could come back,” Andujar said. “Otherwise, I wouldn’t have tried.”
By taking his fourth ATP World Tour title, the Cuenca native takes away €85,000 in prize money as well as 250 ATP ranking points.
Mektic/Peya take first team title
On Saturday, Nikola Mektic of Croatia and Austrian Alexander Peya clinched their first team title. The top seeds fought past Frenchmen Benoit Paire and Edouard Roger-Vasselin 7-5, 3-6, 10-7. The final lasted one hour and 26 minutes.
“It was our third final together. We didn’t want to lose again,” explained Peya. “It was a very tough match and we are extremely happy.”