Lorenzi Oldest First Time Winner

Generali Open, Kitzbuhel

Men’s Final: [48] Paolo Lorenzi (ITA) vs. [123] Nikoloz Basilashvili (GEO)

Lorenzi accomplished what every tennis player dreams of, winning a title on the ATP World Tour.  On Tour since 2003, Lorenzi came close in 2014 but fell in three sets to Federico Delbonis.  Today was a much easier outing.  Despite some resistance from the Georgian, Lorenzi stood firm. He played ultimate clay court tennis, using his many years of experience to confound and frustrate his opponent.  It takes more than power to win matches consistently.  If you have power without the discipline to control it and make the adjustments when power is not working, you will lose.

Basilashvili has the power but lost it mentally too many times to allow him to play the consistent tennis required to win on clay.  Against an opponent like Lorenzi who tracks down just about every ball, you have to stay calm and respond in kind.  Too often Basilashvili let his frustration get the better on him and went for ill-advised shots.  In the end, those errors cost him a chance at his first ATP World Tour title.  Lorenzi stayed focused and worked the points and in the end he rattled his younger opponent.  It was a brilliant display of clay court tennis from the veteran Italian, who became the oldest first time winner on the ATP Tour.  He defeated Basilashvili 6-3, 6-4, demonstrating once again that mental strength is an important weapon in the arsenal of tennis players.

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