Ivan Dodig was the only player to take a set off a set off of Novak Djokovic, during the Serbâ€™s run to the Australia Open title. This week the Croat enters the ATP winners circle for the first time as he captured the Zagreb Indoors by defeating Michael Berrer 6-3, 6-4 in the final.
â€œThis is the best thing that can happen to a player – to play at home in front of your own crowd and win your first title. Iâ€™m really happy and enjoying the moment. Itâ€™s been amazing all week; itâ€™s an unbelievable experience.
“I didnâ€™t have any pressure, I just tried to concentrate on my tennis and play point by point until the last point. I think I was serving very well all week, especially on the important points. Iâ€™m really happy that my serve was working great in every match,” said Dodig.
The hometown boy wins his hometown title for a first time ATP tournament win. South Africaâ€™s Kevin Anderson rallied to take the South African Open title over Indiaâ€™s Somdev Devvarman 4-6, 6-3, 6-2.
On winning the tournament Anderson said, â€œthereâ€™s so many emotions running round right now. Not only winning a tour title, but winning it here in South Africa, is a great experience and memory Iâ€™ll have for the rest of my life. Iâ€™m just really thankful that I was able to come out and play here.
â€œHopefully I can keep going and keep getting better. Iâ€™m going to keep working hard. Thereâ€™s still a lot I want to achieve. Itâ€™s a great honor being mentioned with the Wayne Ferreiras of South African tennis; itâ€™s definitely an exciting prospect for me.
â€œOnce I got through my first-round match I felt really good out there, in all my rounds. I felt a little bit nervous fighting this match out. I think the rain played a little part in helping me re-focus and re-set and I really felt I came out there a different person. Even though I lost the first set, I was able to turn things around and play really good in the second and third sets.â€
During the trophy presentation, Anderson announced he would donate money to the Save The Rhino campaign to stop the poaching of rhinos in Africa.
No three for three for first time ATP winners. Veteran Tommy Robredo rallied from 2-5 down in the third set to stop Colombiaâ€˜s Santiago Giraldo in Santiago, Chile 6-2, 2-6, 7-6 (5) to win the Movistar Open clay-court tournament. Robredo won his 10th ATP title.
Robredo on the win: â€œExtremely happy about this 10th title. Ten is a very nice number and it feels good to lift the trophy again.â€
â€œWhen he served at 5-3 in the third, he started being less aggressive and put the ball more in play which allowed me to play longer and get into the court again. He was hitting really hard until then and it was really tough to put my game together.â€
â€œI feel I started the year well. I am feeling great. It gives me a lot of hope to continue this way. I think I can have the best or one of the best years in my career in 2011.â€
â€œThe plan is now to get to Sauipe as soon as possible and to try to get used to the conditions before playing my first round. When you do well at one event it means you have less time to adapt in the next one. I hope I can do well still over there.â€
As for the loser Giraldo: â€œI am a bit disappointed as I served for the match at 5-3. I think my lack of experience played a part at that time. I maybe got a bit tense and it went against me. On the other hand, I am very happy about the match we played. I gave everything I had, I played with all my heart and, in the end, Tommy won the match and was the better player.â€
â€œIâ€™ve had a great week over here and I hope to continue this way.â€
It was Giraldoâ€™s first ATP final. The Spaniard is off to a good start for the 2011 season. Heâ€™s 9-2 on the year with a fourth round appearance in the Australian Open to go with his Santiago win. Giraldo has a career-best 10-4 record for the start of 2011 campaign.