Sandgren claims first ATP title in Auckland

Cameron Norrie plays a backhand during the ASB Classic final

Cameron Norrie plays a backhand during the ASB Classic final

"In consecutive tournaments in the fall of 2017, which wasn't a lot of fun", Sandgren recalled.Norrie, who was born in South Africa and raised in New Zealand before moving to Britain, broke Struff at 6-5 to take the first set.

British number two Cameron Norrie was beaten in his first ATP final, losing 6-4 6-2 to Tennys Sandgren at the Auckland International in New Zealand.

"I'm a little lost for words", a relieved Sandgren said when a Norrie service return went over the baseline to end the match.

"He played a lot more solid and he didn't really give me a chance to play well at all", said Norrie.

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The American carved out 12 break point opportunities against Norrie's serve and converted four of them, while also sending down seven aces in the final warm-up before the Australian Open, where he reached the quarter-finals previous year. "I've had some injuries and just to be healthy and play well has been good". The former University of Tennessee student-athlete would reach his first ATP Tour final in Houston. But the Auckland championship is Sandgren's shining moment, as he broke his left-handed opponent's serve four times and hit seven aces en route to the biggest triumph of his career.

Anyway, his serve wasn't there like in the opening four matches, hitting a double fault at 2-2 to hand another break to Sandgren who hit a service victor in game eight to save a break point and move 5-3 up. But Sandgren would not be denied in Auckland. And while Norrie saved eight of the 12 break points he faced, Sandgren was too strong. The 27-year-old adds 250 ATP Rankings points to his total, and earns $90,990 in prize money.

Norrie was in trouble at the start of match when he dropped his serve in the opening game.

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