AFPAuckland, New ZealandJan 13, 2018, 06.56 AM
Roberto Bautista Agut his second Auckland title and received a big confidence boost going into the Australian Open when he beat Juan Martin del Potro in three sets in the ATP Auckland Classic final on Saturday.
The Spanish fifth seed added to his 2016 crown with a 6-1 4-6 7-5 success over Del Potro in two hours, seven minutes.
Del Potro, who had not dropped a set all week, was unable to hold serve once in the first set as the Spaniard fought his way to a 6-1, 4-6, 7-5 win.
Both players are seeded in the Australian Open with del Potro 12th and Bautista Agut 20th but it was the Spaniard who was in command in Auckland.
Make that two-time ASB Classic ????! Roberto Bautista Agut wins his third consecutive #ATP final, d. Del Potro in Auckland.
He targeted the Argentinian's backhand with confidence and when he switched to the forehand court del Potro's return placement was off in the first set.
But in the second set, Del Potro regained his touch and broke Bautista Agut for the first time at 5-4 to take the set.
The final set remained with serve until Bautista Agut broke at 5-5 and then served for the match.
Del Potro ready for Melbourne despite Auckland loss he said after the match, "I played well and I'm looking forward to doing well in Melbourne. It's a big event for me, another Grand Slam which is amazing after all my wrist problems," he said.