at the Union Buildings in Pretoria
BELGRADE, Serbia – Second-seeded Andreas Seppi of Italy beat Benoit Paire 6-3, 6-2 to win the Serbia Open on Sunday and collect the second title of his career.
France's Paire, who was playing his first ever ATP final after upsetting top-seeded Pablo Andujar of Spain, got off to a bright start and earned an early break. But he failed to keep the momentum going and made a series of unforced errors and double faults.
Seppi, who won his first tournament last June in Eastbourne, acclerated into a 3-0 lead in the second set before breaking serve to close out the match, but only after Paire had saved five match points.
“It was a fantastic week for me,” said Seppi, who lost in the semifinals in Belgrade in 2009 against top-ranked Novak Djokovic. “I managed to win this time.”
Paire, who also had eliminated sixth-seeded Fabio Fognini and third-seeded Jarkko Nieminen, thanked the crowd, promising to “see you next year.”
The Serbia Open tournament is organised by the Djokovic family. Djokovic won the title last year, but pulled out this year because of the death of his grandfather. – Sapa-AP