For the second consecutive year, Milos Raonic (Thornhill, ON) lost in the championship match, his third finals appearance of the year, on Sunday at the Regions Morgan Keegan Championships in Memphis, Tennessee, an ATP World Tour 500 event.
Raonic fell 7-5, 7-6(4) to world no. 38 Jurgen Melzer of Austria in a one hour, 37 minute final. Despite hitting 22 aces, Raonic was broken twice in the match which helped propel Melzer to victory. Raonic led 4-1 in the second set and seemed destined to take the match to a third set, but Melzer fought back to force a tiebreak in the second which he won to close out the match. It is just the third tiebreak and only the second match Raonic has lost thus far in 2012. Melzer upset three of the tournament’s top four seeds, including John Isner, Radek Stepanek and Raonic, en route to his fourth career title.
By reaching the Memphis final for the second straight year, Raonic will see his ATP ranking jump to around no. 24 in the world, which would be a career-high. The 21-year-old Canadian will next play the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, California and the Sony Ericsson Open in Miami, Florida during the month of March, the first two Masters 1000 tournaments of the season.
Nestor and Mirnyi repeat in Memphis Daniel Nestor (Toronto, ON) and Max Mirnyi of Belarus successfully defended their 2011 Memphis title with a 4-6, 7-5, 10-7 win over Ivan Dodig and Marcelo Melo in the doubles final on Sunday. The win is their second title of 2012 and the fourth trophy triumph for Nestor in Memphis. He also captures doubles title no. 77 in his illustrious career.
Diez and Polansky collect Futures titles On Sunday, both Steven Diez (Toronto, ON) and Peter Polansky (Thornhill, ON) both won their first Futures titles on the ITF Pro Circuit in 2012. Diez won the $10,000 Murcia Futures event in Spain, defeating Pedro Sousa of Portugal 2-6, 6-4, 6-3 in the final. Meanwhile, Polansky was crowned champion of the $15,000 Brownsville Futures in Texas thanks to a 6-1, 6-3 victory over Great Britain’s Daniel Cox on the title match. Polansky lost 18 games in five matches.