Mikhail Youzhny (Profile) capped off his great week at Valencia Open 2013 by dethroning top-seeded defending champion David Ferrer (Player Profile) in today’s final. The unseeded Russian thus got his hands on the second ATP trophy of the year after conquering Gstaad in July, whilst the home crowd favorite now lost six consecutive ATP title clashes, including the one in Stockholm last Sunday where he finished runner-up to Dimitrov.
It was the 31-year-old Moscow-native who got the match underway and he was holding his service games smoothly, whilst a three-time Valencia title holder Ferrer failed to settle into the opener and allowed the rival to get hold of a double break cushion by 5-1. He then closed in on Youzhny by pegging one break back after a long seventh game, yet the highest ranked Russian stood strong and served out the set with thirty-eight minutes on the clock. While not more than fifty percent of his first serves were on target in that part of the game, he still managed to be on the winning end of 75% of the subsequent rallies, whilst the below-par Spanaird claimed only 47% of first serve points.
Ferrer came out a different player in the beginning of the second set where he broke Youzhny to love in the third game and confirmed it in the same fashion to construct a 4-1 lead, yet his resilient adversary stayed mentally strong when confronted with an up-hill battle. The Russian first succeeded to annull the one break advantage by 4-4 and built on it by breaking again in the eleventh game. Serving for the championship, the second match point did the trick for determined Youzhny as he executed a penetrating down-the-line backhand which the Spaniard could not return – the World no. 21 Russian started celebrating a 6-3, 7-5 final victory with his trademark salute to the crowd after one hour and twenty-five minutes of play. The newly crowned Valencia king lifted his historic tenth career trophy.
In an on-court interview Youzhny expressed his happiness about the way he played in Spain this week and complimented the audience at the fully-packed Agora arena for their sportsmanship.
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