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Kyrgios claims first home ATP title


Kyrgios claims first home ATP title

Nick Kyrgios was at his brilliant best as he downed American Ryan Harrison to claim the Brisbane International in straight sets on Sunday (Jan 7). The 6-4, 6-2 win was the third-seeded Australian's fourth title on the ATP tour and his first on home soil.

Nick Kyrgios has claimed his maiden ATP title on home soil and first since 2016, combining casual flair with enormous power to beat Ryan Harrison 6-4 6-2 at the Brisbane International. The 22-year-old staved off five break points in the first set, including three in his third service game as the American made a terrific fist of dealing with the booming Kyrgios delivery.

But the Australian third seed held his nerve and pounced at his first opportunity, a pair of forehand passing shots earning the decisive break before an ace sealed the first set in 37 minutes. Twice Kyrgios thrilled the crowd with delightful touch at the net, while he used angles from the baseline and the occasional flat forehand to throw the 25-year-old off his game.

A free-moving Kyrgios then cranked the pressure to another level in the second set, getting more balls in play on the world No.47's serve as he eyed an early kill. A Harrison double fault to concede serve was telling of that intensity and a double break was more than enough security for a man who had only dropped serve three times all tournament.

In lifting the Roy Emerson Trophy, Kyrgios becomes the second Australian champion in the tournament's 10-year history after Lleyton Hewitt in 2014. The triumph, the fourth of his young career, lifts Kyrgios four spots to No.17 in the world ahead of this month's Australian Open where, providing his body holds up, he will enter as a legitimate contender.

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