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Last Updated: Monday, 5 February 2007, 16:18 GMT
Malisse hits back to beat Blake
Xavier Malisse
Malisse beat Blake for the first time in three meetings
Xavier Malisse staged a superb recovery to beat world number six James Blake in the rain-delayed Delray Beach final.

Blake led 7-5 3-3 when play was halted on Sunday but when the action resumed on Monday the Belgian took control.

Third seed Malisse - champion in 2005 - battled to a 5-7 6-4 6-4 win over the top seed for his second ATP title of 2007, having also won in Chennai.

Malisse also won the doubles final with Hugo Armando, beating Briton James Auckland and Australian Stephen Huss.

The fourth seeds won 6-3 6-7 (4-7) 10-5 to deny the 26-year-old Auckland a first ATP doubles title.

Malisse was appearing in his fifth Delray singles final and quickly took the initiative on Monday's resumption of play with a break in the first game.

Tough conditions, but the same for both of us

James Blake

A lone break in the third game of the decider was enough for the Belgian to go on and close out the victory.

"If we would have played yesterday, I probably would have lost," said Malisse.

"The wind slowed down his ball. The wind helped me a little bit today. The court is almost the perfect speed for me. I feel like I can get to every ball here when I'm fit.

"Also, you have that confidence because you've played a lot of times well here. There's just a level of comfort and confidence for me at this tournament."

Blake said: "Tough conditions, but the same for both of us. Xavier just did better with it.

"Wind is the biggest equalizer in tennis. He did a better job of adjusting. He deserved to win today for sure."



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