Croatian Borna Coric claimed his first ATP title when he battled back to beat experienced German Philipp Kohlschreiber in the final of the Grand Prix Hassan II in Marrakech on Sunday.
The 20-year-old, playing in only his second Tour final, won 5-7 7-6(3) 7-5 and saved four match points before sealing victory.
Third seed Kohlschreiber looked on course for victory when he led by a set and 3-0 but Coric recovered to level the final on a tiebreak. Coric then clawed back a 2-4 deficit in the decider before claiming victory in two hours 38 minutes, the longest final this year according to the ATP.
It was a huge week for Coric who has suffered a marked loss of form and has slumped to 79 in the rankings having been tipped to challenge for major honours.
Coric was runner-up at the clay-court tournament last year.
The 33-year-old Kohlschreiber was playing in his first final this season and chasing an eighth career title.
Coric is the third player from the current #NextGenATP contingent to lift an ATP World Tour trophy, joining Alexander Zverev (St. Petersburg 2016 & Montpellier 2017) and Karen Khachanov (Chengdu 2016).
“I would say that’s my biggest comeback, I’ve never saved five match points,” said Coric.
“Especially in such an important match, I served very well in the big points. It’s an awesome feeling. I didn’t know what to expect when I came here and I wasn’t in the best shape. But I’ve been working very hard the past three or four months and now it’s paying off.”