Croatian Marin Bradaric prevailed over fifth-seed Arsenije Zlatanovic of Serbia 4-6, 6-3, 7-6(3) in a battle of nerves to clinch the title in the TNTA-TDTA $10,000 ITF men's Futures tennis tournament at the Union Club here on Saturday.
Bradaric was off to a flying start in the first set taking a 3-0 lead. He kept his opponent on the move hitting shots to all corners of the court. Bradaric looked like running away with the set, when he got chance to break in the fourth game.
But Zlatanovic stood strong to hold serve and along with it grew in confidence. The Serb broke Bradaric in the fifth game and held his own to level at 3-3.
The Croatian, who started making errors when trying to wrap up points quickly, lost serve again in the ninth game and was down 4-5. Zlatanovic then packed in the big serves to seal the set 6-4.
The second set went with serve until the eighth game, when Bradaric earned two break points. He made it 5-3 soon. Riding on the timely break, Bradaric closed out the set to take the contest into the decider.
The intense-battle continued in the third set too. Bradaric twice had a chance to serve out the match at 5-4 and 6-5, but Zlatanovic fought back valiantly on both the occasions to take the set into the tiebreaker. However, Bradaric was all over the Serb in the tiebreaker and won it 7-3.
“It was a great win for me playing in tough conditions against a very good opponent. I am happy to have won the title on my maiden visit to India,” said the Croatian.
Zlatanovic, who competed in his first ITF Futures final, said that it was a very good experience playing in India.
Bradaric won a cash award of $1300 and 18 ATP points, while the runner-up received $900 and 10 points. Karthi P. Chidambaram, vice-president, TNTA, gave away the prizes.
The results: Singles: Final: Marin Bradaric (Cro) bt Arsenije Zlatanovic (Srb) 4-6, 6-3, 7-6(3).
Keywords: ITF men's tennis