SAP Open - Day Seven - Singles Final

© Matt Cohen 2011

Sunday was the final of the SAP Open featuring Fernando Verdasco of Spain
and Canadian Milos Raonic. On paper, the match between defending champion
Verdasco and world #84 Raonic (who needed a wild card just to get into the
field) was a mismatch. But Raonic's serve - approaching 150mph - was just
too much for Verdasco to handle, and the day ended with Raonic taking his
first tournament with a 7-6, 7-6 win.

© Matt Cohen 2011

Following up his heavy serve and solid baseline game with a few trips to the
net, Raonic gave Verdasco no room to paint the lines in the manner that got
him to the final.

© Matt Cohen 2011

© Matt Cohen 2011

© Matt Cohen 2011

Despite the closeness of the match on the scoreboard, Raonic dictated play,
and Verdasco was in the unfamiliar position of alternately chasing and having
to fight off serves.

© Matt Cohen 2011

© Matt Cohen 2011

© Matt Cohen 2011

© Matt Cohen 2011

© Matt Cohen 2011

The second set tiebreaker was tense, with more mistakes than great shots. But
for the first time all week, there was genuine emotion on both sides of the net.

© Matt Cohen 2011

© Matt Cohen 2011

© Matt Cohen 2011

© Matt Cohen 2011

© Matt Cohen 2011

After the match, Verdasco was almost despondent in his press conference,
speaking about the near-futility of playing against guys who can serve
150mph. He's going to have to figure something out quickly, because in a
scheduling irony due to Raonic's low pre-SAP Open ranking, the two will have
a rematch on Wednesday at the Regions Morgan Keegan Championships in
Memphis.