Soderling rules in Rotterdam

2011-02-13 17:04

Rotterdam - French Open finalist Robin Soderling retained his ATP Rotterdam title with a 6-3, 3-6, 6-3 defeat of France's Jo-Wilfried Tsonga here on Sunday.

World number four Soderling, the top seed, ran his record over Tsonga to 4-0 after losing his first set in the series.

The Swede, retianing atitle for the first time in his career, now owns eight trophys from 18 ATP finals.

Soderling maintained his domination over Frenchmen as he won an eighth consecutive match against a player from France.

Tsonga, seeded eighth, was denied his sixth career title after winning his last in October 2009 in Tokyo, venue for his last final.

The defeat was only his second in a final after losing the 2008 Australian Open trophy match to Novak Djokovic.

Soderling claimed victory in one hour 22 minutes, but was out-aced by Tsonga 20 to 12.

The Swede claimed the opening set after losing an early break but getting it back in the eighth game. Tsonga answered to level the match in the second set, carrying momentum from a 4-2 lead over Soderling.

The Scandinavian top seed re-asserted his big game in the third, moving into position with a break for 5-3 and serving out his 13th win of the year from 14 matches.

Soderling began the season by winning the Brisbane title and suffered his only loss in the Australian Open fourth round against Alexandr Dolgopolov.

With the loss, the 18th-ranked Tsonga now stands 15-21 over his career against Top ten players.