Australian youngster Bernard Tomic clinched his first ATP Tour title with a fighting win over South African Kevin Anderson in the final of the Sydney International on Saturday.
Tomic claimed his eighth straight win of the year in defeating the 36th-ranked Anderson 6-3, 6-7(2), 6-3 in one hour and 55 minutes.
Tomic is the first Australian winner of the Sydney tournament since Lleyton Hewitt in 2005 and the first 20-year-old event winner since Roger Federer in 2002.
Ferrer equals record
Top-seed David Ferrer warmed up for the Australian Open with a fourth ATP Heineken Open title when he recovered from two early service breaks to beat Philipp Kohlschreiber 7-6(5), 6-1 on Saturday.
It was a confidence-boosting finish for Ferrer ahead of the opening Grand Slam of the year in Melbourne as he fought back to win in straight sets after Kohlschreiber held set point at 4-5 on serve in the first set.
Despite dropping his second and fifth service games, it took Ferrer just 78 minutes to defeat Kohlschreiber with most of the time spent on the first set which lasted 52 minutes before the Spaniard won the tie-break 7-5.
However, while it showed he was tapering nicely for the Australian Open, Ferrer put thoughts of Melbourne aside as he celebrated equalling the record of former 12-time Grand Slam winner Roy Emerson as the only player to win four times in Auckland.
“It was amazing for me to win here for the fourth time. Now I can say this is my favourite tournament,” he said.
Hewitt claims title
Lleyton Hewitt showed vintage form as he humbled Juan Martin del Potro 6-1, 6-4 on Saturday to win the ATP Kooyong Classic in Melbourne, giving him a major boost ahead of his first match at the Australian Open.
The former No. 1 and two-time Grand Slam winner a decade ago completed victories over three top-15 opponents at the eight-man special event at the Kooyong Stadium — the former home of the Open.
Tomas Berdych lifted his game to claim third place through a 6-3, 6-2 win over Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis, winning in just under an hour.
The performance was a vast improvement for the sixth-ranked Czech after losing in straight sets to Hewitt earlier in the week.
Vesnina wins first title
Russia’s Elena Vesnina won her first WTA title with a 6-3, 6-4 victory over defending champion Mona Barthel in the WTA Hobart International final on Saturday.
The results (finals):
At Sydney: ATP International: Bernard Tomic bt Kevin Anderson 6-3, 6-7(2), 6-3.
At Auckland: ATP Heineken Open: David Ferrer bt Philipp Kohlschreiber 7-6(5), 6-1.
At Melbourne: ATP Kooyong Classic: Lleyton Hewitt bt Juan Martin del Potro 6-1, 6-4. Playoff for 3rd place: Tomas Berdych bt Marcos Baghdatis 6-3, 6-2.
At Hobart: WTA International: Elena Vesnina bt Mona Barthel 6-3, 6-4.