Cool Dudi makes his point with stun­ning dis­play

The Jewish Chronicle - - Sport -

Over­looked for se­lec­tion in Bei­jing, Dudi Sela reached the fi­nal of the China Open be­fore suc­cumb­ing to for­mer world No. 1 Andy Rod­dick.

Sela had con­tro­ver­sially been de­nied the chance to com­pete in the Bei­jing Olympics by the Is­rael Olympic Com­mit- tee be­cause he was not ranked in the top 50. Last week, when he fi­nally made it to Bei­jing, he em­phat­i­cally showed them the er­ror of their de­ci­sion with the best ten­nis of his ca­reer.

Sela’s per­for­mance saw him rise 26 places to 66 in the world rank­ings and earn $45,000 in prize money. En route to his first ever ATP fi­nal, the 23-year-old Is­raeli achieved a ca­reer-best victory in the sec­ond round with a straight sets win over world num­ber five, Spain’s David Fer­rer. He also tri­umphed over Ni­co­las Devoder (61), Tommy Ro­bredo (16) and Rainer Schuet­tler (35) without los­ing a set.

“I showed my­self I can com­pete with the big play­ers,” said Sela, who be­came the first Is­raeli to play in an ATP fi­nal since Harel Levy lost in Not­ting­ham seven years ago. “But over­all I can take a lot of sat­is­fac­tion from this tour­na­ment. It feels very spe­cial, es­pe­cially be­cause all of Is­rael is watch­ing on TV. I’m re­ally happy. I feel amaz­ing. I hope this won’t be my last ATP fi­nal.”

Rod­dick said: “Sela was un­doubt­edly the best player in the tour­na­ment.”

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