A second ITF title and more ATP points for Yuki

May 2nd, 2009 - 5:33 pm ICT by IANS  

Davis Cup New Delhi, May 2 (IANS) Yuki Bhambri has truly arrived on the men’s circuit. The youngest Indian to win an International Tennis Federation (ITF) title last week, Saturday made it back-to-back victories, knocking out top seed Raven Klaasen 7-6 (5), 7-6 (5) in the $15,000 tournament final at the DLTA complex here.
Yuki, 16, went through ten matches in two weeks of tough tournament schedule in unkind summer weather without dropping a set.

Klaasen, a South African Davis Cupper, was playing in his first final of the year after being a semi-finalist here last week. The top seed showed his touch while brushing aside opponent after opponent with with ease and also avenging his last week’s loss to Vishnu Vardhan Friday.

It was not easy for Yuki to be playing his first seeded opponent this week in the final.

Egged on by his family and a decent turn-out, Yuki responded well to the South African’s challenge. The junior Australian Open champion continued to serve well and some of his returns of serve, too, were devastating. His power-packed forehand invariably left Klaasen groping.

The Delhi youngster’s big serve yet again rescued him from a critical situations while Klaasen had problems with his first serve.

In his enthusiasm to serve with all his power, Yuki committed five double-faults during the one hour 40 minutes clash.

In the first set, Klaasen first had a chance to break Yuki in the sixth game but he failed to do so after deuce was called thrice and then it was the Delhi youngster’s turn to attack Klaasen’s serve in the eleventh game. Yuki was on a break point as the South African netted a backhand. Klaasen, however, succeeded in warding off danger and the set went to the tie break, which Yuki won after Klassen netted a backhand volley.

A set up, Yuki was more aggressive and went for his shots in the second. He led 4-2 and Klaasen broke back in the seventh game.

The South African then had an easy hold in the next game. Thereafter, both the players held their serve to force a second tie-break of the match and Yuki was again the dominant player to win the set and the match as a Klaasen forehand went wide.

An ecstatic Yuki said he didn’t expect to win this week.

” I was quite thrilled to win my first ITF last week and so I would have been happy winning a couple of rounds this week. Frankly, though I wanted to win a second title, I didn’t expect it to come the way it did. It’s tremendous,” said Yuki.

“I had seen a bit of Klaasen here and knew he is a player who loves to come to net apart from being very consistent from the baseline. I was confident and kept my game simple, sticking to the basics.”

The two wins earned Yuki 50 ATP points and $39,000. His next port of call is Kuwait in a fortnight.

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