ATP Rotterdam: In-form Gael Monfils topples Felix Auger-Aliassime for 10th title


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ATP Rotterdam: In-form Gael Monfils topples Felix Auger-Aliassime for 10th title

World no. 9 Gael Monfils has been the player to beat so far in February, winning back-to-back titles under the roof in Montpellier and Rotterdam. Making a slow start last week, Gael claimed 18 sets in a row, earning his tenth ATP crown in Rotterdam following a 6-2, 6-4 victory over Felix Auger-Aliassime in an hour and 26 minutes.

The defending champion proved to be too good for a teenager who is yet to win an ATP final (0-4), facing only two break chances and getting broke once. That wasn't enough for Felix to stay in contention, with the Canadian dropping almost half of the points in his games and suffering four breaks from 11 opportunities offered to Monfils.

The more experienced player had 15 winners and 14 unforced errors, taming his shots nicely and taking advantage of more than 30 unforced errors from Auger-Aliassime who gave his best to keep the points on his racquet, only to spray too many errors and finish runner-up.

The youngster kicked off the action with an ace, fending off three break chances in the third game to stay on the positive side of the scoreboard until game five when Monfils grabbed four straight points on the return to move in front after a backhand winner.

Felix wasted an opportunity to pull the break back in the next game when his forehand landed wide, suffering another break in game seven following a loose forehand and sealing the opener with a service winner in the next game for a 6-2.

The Canadian sent another forehand long at the beginning of the second set to lose serve at love, missing another forehand in game five to give Gael a double break and sent him closer to the finish line. Auger-Aliassime repelled four match points in the eighth game to pull one break back and prolong the action before Monfils landed a service winner at 5-4 for a hold at 15 and back-to-back titles during an indoor swing.