The final of the Lyon Open was filled with emotions as the fourth seed, Francisco Cerundolo, faced the young local surprise, Arthur Fils, who secured his first professional title.
The French player defeated Zhang Zhizhen and took advantage of Mikael Ymer's disqualification after hitting the umpire's chair with his racket, as well as Felix Auger-Aliassime's withdrawal, to reach the semifinals. There, he faced Brandon Nakashima and defeated him in a third-set tie-break to secure his place in the final.
Despite his strong form, Argentinean Francisco Cerundolo couldn't match the talent of the confident French player, who will enter the French Open with high spirits. Fils didn't hide his excitement after the match,
"I will remember this forever," he said.
"It has been a great week. It has been amazing. I am happy with the win and now I want more. It was a tough semi-final match. Today I came onto court with not lots of energy, but I was focused on my game and trying my best,” Fils added.
"I was feeling that I was playing well earlier [this week] but I didn't maybe expect that I would win the tournament."
In the next ranking update, Fils will make his first appearance in the top 100, climbing 49 places to reach world No. 63. In his debut at the French Open, he will face another clay specialist, the 29th seed Alejandro Davidovich Fokina. As for Cerundolo, who reached the quarterfinals in Rome and Barcelona, he will play against Spanish player Jaume Munar.