Cameron Norrie was denied his maiden ATP title by Albert Ramos-Vinolas who outlasted the British No.2 in the final of the Millennium Estoril Open in Portugal.
It’s never easy losing, especially for my first title, but Albert played better than me in the end, and he deserved to win Cameron Norrie
The 33-year-old Spaniard came back from a set down and a break down to clinch 4-6 6-3 7-6(3) victory for the third title of his career by converting his first match point in the deciding tie-break.
“I won three tournaments in my career, so this is one of the best three weeks in my career,” Ramos-Viñolas said of his achievement which with 16 wins on clay to five losses, is the best record on the surface this season.
“It was a really difficult match against Cameron. I think he played a really good tournament,”
Norrie, whilst disappointed at missing out on his first title, can’t be dissatisfied with his current run of results which has seen him rise from 74 on the world rankings to 48 following the Estoril final.
Currently he has 18 wins this season and is tied third on the tour with the Italian teenager, Jannik Sinner and only behind Stefanos Tsitsipas and Andrey Rublev (26) – in terms of most ATP Tour wins this year
“It’s never easy losing, especially for my first title, but Albert played better than me in the end, and he deserved to win.
“My first title was three years ago here in the doubles. It’s a really nice place, right by the beach. It’s a pity we can’t enjoy it this year, but hopefully I’ll be back next year.”
Norrie led by a set and a break before Ramos-Vinolas fought back from 40-0 down to recover the break in a marathon game at 2-1 in the second set.
More errors started to flow from Norrie’s racket as his opponent levelled the match and the Briton needed treatment for a foot injury after going a break down early in the decider.
Immediately afterwards, he broke back and the pair held serves to force a final-set tie-break decider.
Seventh seed Ramos-Vinolas, trusting his powerful forehand, dictated rallies and forced more mistakes from Norrie, winning the final six points to clinch the title.