Taylor Fritz sealed the deal with a perfect return to hard courts by winning the Atlanta Open for his second tour-level title of the season. Fritz won his sixth career title, defeating Aleksandar Vukic of Australia 7-5, 6-7 (5), 6-4.
The top seed and highest-ranked American at No. 9 prepared for the US Open with his second victory of the season on hard courts, having won the Delray Beach title previously in February of this year.
From the beginning of the tournament Fritz looked to be sharp and on a mission to take the Atlanta trophy with little resistance. He reached the final without dropping a set and then had two match points while leading 6-5 in the second with Vukic serving. But the Australian fired back and won the tiebreaker to force the deciding third set.
It was a stellar display from Fritz, who didn’t face a break point all match and served up 16 aces. His main strength was his serve, winning 84% and 74% of his first and second serve points.
Fritz relied on his knockout serve and aggressive play-style, not giving up on long exchanges. His groundstrokes were also consistent and proved to be reliable in tight rallies.
The momentum shift in the match came when Fritz earned triple break point at 3-3 in the decider. He showed the ability to stay consistent enough to win a 27-shot rally.
“I felt like today it was like, ‘I’m here to win it and I’d be absolutely devastated with a final result.’ Even though a lot of times, being in the final, I’m happy with that,” Fritz said.
Vukic beat Fritz in the winner department, but the world No. 9 fell back to his battle-tested experience. He leaned on the home crowd’s support when needed.
“I just felt so at home and welcomed in Atlanta this week,” Fritz said. “I’ve been coming back here for so many years, so I’m happy to finally get the title. All week, the support was amazing. I’m not from Atlanta, but it felt like I was because the support was just crazy all week long.”
He is looking motivated to put in a consistent performance over the next six weeks of the hard court swing. Fritz seems to feel most comfortable playing at home on his favored surface with the backing of an American crowd.
There is no time to rest for Fritz. He will be playing in Washington this week where he is No. 1 seed at the Citi Open.
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Featured Image courtesy of Atlanta Open
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