John­son wins US clay ti­tle

Sun.Star Cebu - - PRIME SPORTS -

Steve John­son shrugged off nu­mer­ous missed op­por­tu­ni­ties to beat first-time ATP Tour fi­nal­ist Ten­nys Sand­gren 7-6 (2), 2-6, 6-4 on Sun­day to be­come the first player to suc­cess­fully de­fend the U.S. Men’s Clay Court ti­tle in 16 years.

The 28-year-old John­son, from Pa­los Verdes, Cal­i­for­nia, won only two of the 14 break points he had against Sand­gren’s serve, but the sec­ond in the penul­ti­mate game of the nearly 2 1/2-hour match put him in po­si­tion to serve for the match, his third three-set­ter in a row.

John­son then fended off a break point him­self and se­cured the ti­tle, only his third at the ATP level, when Sand­gren lofted a back­hand re­turn a cou­ple feet long. /

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