Menezes thrashes Kadhe to win GSL Tennis Open


Joao Menezes breezed pass Arjun Kadhe to win the Gladiators Systems Limited (GSL) Tennis Open final  6-3, 6-1 to emerge winner of the tournament held at the Abuja national Stadium on Saturday.

It was a subdued performance from Kadhe, as the 24-year-old Indian was visibly fatigued after playing two matches on Friday.

The ATP 397th ranked player had defeated compatriot Suraj Prabodh in the singles semi-finals and was defeated in the doubles final along with Ronnie Boutillier in the doubles finals decided on Thursday.

It was an easy win for Menezes, who had won the 2018 Tombim Open by defeating Maximilian Neuchrist in the final.

The Brazilian dominated from start to finish, forcing Kadhe to make four double faults.

Menezes also recorded six aces against Kadhe’s one and won 56 points, 16 higher than his Indian opponent.

Five break points out of seven, compared to Kadhe’s one in one, summed up Menezes’ dominance as he wrapped up the victory in one hour and two minutes.

Speaking to reporters after the game, Menezes said he rode on good preparation and consistency to emerge winner of the GSL Tennis Open.

“These three weeks have totally changed my life. I look forward to playing in bigger tournaments and I think I was able to pull this off due to the preparations I had.

“I have also been consistent in the three tournaments. I only lost in the Dayak final throughout the three weeks and I thank my coach for it.

“I ranked 500th when I got here and I may have gained at least 90 points by winning two Futures and getting to the final of the third.

For winning two of the three ITF Pro-Circuit tournaments, Menezes gained 35 points each, making it 70 points.

He also won 20 other points for reaching the final of the third tournament, thereby bringing his total game points to 90.

Menezes said it was three perfect weeks for him and thanked the organisers and spectators for supporting him all through.

“It was a 99 per cent perfect three weeks for me. I don’t have words to describe the support and quality of games I have had,” he told reporters.

On his part, Kadhe admitted that he was defeated by a better player and said he may have worn out from playing two matches the previous day.

“I think playing a singles semi-final and doubles final on the same day took a toll on me slightly. It was a long day yesterday and it was very hot.

“To play Menezes with his current form you have to be very fresh, which I don’t think I was. I didn’t move well nor serve well.

“He is a quality player high on confidence and I know it was going to be difficult if you’re not 100 per cent.

“But to be honest, I adapted really well. It was a great performance and my first final in this category. I give credit to the opponent for his solidity,” Menezes stated.

Speaking in a brief closing ceremony, Dayo Akindoju, president of the Nigeria Tennis Federation (NTF), heaped praises on the federation’s officials for an outstanding performance throughout the three weeks of ITF Pro-Circuit tournaments.

“I want to commend the players and officials for the success of the tournaments. I also want to thank the fans. I assure you that there is more to come in Nigerian tennis,” Akindoju said.

He also promised that the federation would keep striving for the better.

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