To the joy of the home crowd top seed Philipp Kohlschreiber obtained the Dusseldorf Open 2014 crown following a straight sets win over seventh-seeded Ivo Karlovic this Sunday. The today’s finalists are now tied in the head-to-head record after four ATP encounters as well as in the number of career titles. The 30-year-old German thus conquered his fifth tournament and the first one after triumphing at another 250 Series event in Munich a couple of years ago. Four of the trophies were handed to him in front of his own audience.
The domestic player was the first to face a break point threat in the opener, but he turned around the second game before completing a decisive five straight games run. By the time the Croat veteran regrouped to avoid the third consecutive loss of serve, the set was already out of his reach as the efficient opponent did not hesitate to pull one nil ahead.
Karlovic improved significantly in the second set, yet he conceded a double fault in a crucial moment to give the rival a new break point and the latter gladly accepted the gift to get his nose in front at 4-3. However, a lack of concentration in the follow-up game prevented Kohlschreiber to consolidate the break and as the tall Croat was making good use of his powerful first serves, the set was bound to end in a tie-break.
The local hope escaped to 3-0 in the early stages of the breaker thanks to a neat and accurate display, whilst Karlovic failed to get into serving rhythm. Even so, he rescued a pair of match points to make it 6-4*, but then missed a down-the-line forehand and Kohlscreiber threw his hands aloft in celebration of a well-deserved 6-2, 7-6 (4) clay-court victory.
While the Croat expectedly prevailed in the aces department (4-1), he was surely not happy about conceding twelve unforced errors more than the adversary (19-7) and scoring only 7 winners as opposed to Kohlshreiber’s 22.
“It was great that I could handle the pressure as top seed,” Kohlschreiber told ATPWorldTour.com. “I had some tough and tricky opponents this week, so I am very happy to have won. I gained a lot of confidence. I play some of my best tennis in Germany, where I have great support. The crowd gave me extra motivation and helped me when I got nervous.”
“At the beginning he played unbelievably well,” Karlovic told ATPWorldTour.com. “I was struggling a little bit with a back problem, so I couldn’t hit as hard as I normally do. But it was a good week. I didn’t expect five matches here, so I am very happy to have reached the final.”