Khachanov reigns in Zhuhai

The Russian beats Japanese Yoshihito Nishoka in the final of an ATP 250 tournament in Zhuhai with a score 7:6, 6:1.

Russian tennis star Karen Khachanov has finally claimed his first ATP title since 2018, after defeating Japan’s Yoshihito Nishioka in the final of the Zhuhai Championships on Sunday.

Khachanov prevails in tight first set

The match started with both players holding their serves comfortably, until they consecutively broke each other’s serve in the middle of the first set. The set went to a tie-break, where Khachanov took an early lead and never looked back. He sealed the first set 7:6 (7:2).

Nishioka fades away in second set

Nishioka, who achieved his personal best result at this event, could not maintain his level in the second set. He dropped his serve in the fourth game, as Khachanov increased his aggression and accuracy. The Russian broke again in the sixth game, and served out the match with ease. He won the second set 6:1, and celebrated his fifth career title with a roar.

This was the fifth meeting between the players. Khachanov’s now leading the H2H with a comfortable 4-1 score

Karen’s back to winning ways

This was Khachanov’s first ATP-level final since January, 2022, when he lost to Gael Monfils in Adelaide. It was also his first tour-level title since 2018, when he won the Rolex Paris Masters, beating Novak Djokovic in the final. The 27-year-old had struggled with injuries and inconsistency in the past two years, but showed signs of improvement this season.

The Russian has had an impressive run this season, reaching the semifinals at the Australian Open and the quarterfinals at Roland Garros

This victory allowed Khachanov to rise to the 14th position in the ATP Live ranks. The Russian continues to seek for an opportunity to jump back into the top 10, where he peaked at No. 8 in 2019.

Will Karen Khachanov make it to the top 10 again?
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Knights Antony/ author of the article
Habra Sports Journal