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City news, 07.11.2005 14:16

Johansson wins St. Petersburg Open

st_petersburg_open_thomas_johansson Sweden's Thomas Johansson captured his first title of the season, winning the St. Petersburg Open on Sunday by defeating Germany's Nicolas Kiefer 6-4, 6-2.

Johansson, seeded second and ranked 15th, earned his ninth career title. He also won this tournament in 1997.

"I played very well today," Johansson said. "Kiefer is a tough opponent - he is a talented player and never gives up."

Kiefer, who beat top-seeded Nikolay Davydenko in the quarterfinals, saved four break points in the opening game and five more in the seventh before netting a forehand return to fall behind 4-3. Johansson saved two break points in the 10th game and had a service winner and a passing forehand cross to win the set.

"I was disappointed with my game today," said Liefer, who is ranked 29th. "There was something wrong with it from the very beginning and I couldn't understand what it was."

In the second set, Johansson broke serve in the first and fifth games and saved four break points in the next game to lead 5-1. Serving for the match, the Swede saved a break point at 30-40 down and closed the match with his 10th ace.

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