andy ram 298 88.
(photo credit: Lidor Goldberg/ITA)
Andy Ram defeated Frenchman Clemet Morel 6-3, 3-6, 6-3 on Saturday afternoon to win the Joyce Eisenberg futures tournament in Ra'anana. The win was Ram's first singles title since capturing the Bristol Challenger in England in July 2000.
The victory will propel Ram, who together with partner Yoni Erlich is among the world's top doubles teams, up some 150 spots in the singles rankings when the ATP releases its March 13 figures. Ram, who also earned $1,300 with this title, hadn't taken part in an official singles match since August.
"After not playing singles for so long, I really enjoyed myself this week and that was my main goal," Ram said. "I didn't expect to win the title... I surprised myself with the level of my game and improved from match to match."
An early break saw Ram take a 4-2 lead on Morel (784) that proved to be the difference in the opening set. Morel broke Ram in the eighth game of the second set and then held serve to even the match. The third set followed the pattern, as Ram broke the Frenchman in the sixth set for a 4-2 lead and held on for the title.
"I can't imagine returning to focus on singles anytime soon, but maybe I'll continue later on," Ram summed up.
In the meantime, Ram and Erlich head out on Tuesday to the US, where they are scheduled to play in the Pacific Life Open in Indian Wells, California, this week.
Also on Saturday, second seeded Diana Bruel of France defeated fifth seed Veronika Raimrova of the Czech Republic 6-4, 6-2 in the final of the Marjorie Sherman women's futures.