Top 5 Unexpected Match Results – Milos Raonic defeat Fernando Verdasco, San Jose Final

Milos Raonic

The signs were there that Milos Raonic was set to announce himself in a big way when he upset World No. 10 Mikhail Youzhny to reach the fourth round of the Australian Open in January. The 20-year-old Canadian fulfilled that promise with a scintillating run the following month in San Jose that culminated in victory in the final over then-World No. 9 Fernando Verdasco.

Raonic did not drop a set in his three matches to reach the final, and exhibited great poise and big match temperament to hold his nerve and edge the vastly more experienced Verdasco in two tie-break sets in the final. He faced down four set points as he rallied from a 2-6 deficit to clinch the first set breaker, and was always in control in the second set decider to claim victory on his third match point.

While defending champion and top seed Verdasco was contesting his 14th tour-level final, the No. 84-ranked Raonic, who had started the year at World No. 156, was appearing in just his eighth tour-level main draw and became the first Canadian in 16 years to win an ATP World Tour title.

“It’s been amazing… I came here and had probably my best week,” declared Raonic. “I can’t stop smiling. I’m happy about it and I hope I can keep it going more than six weeks into the full year schedule and see where I am at the end of the year.”

Success in San Jose proved to be the catalyst for Raonic, who reached the Memphis final a week later after beating Verdasco (in a third-set tie-break) in the first round. He finished the year at No. 31 in the South African Airways ATP Rankings, earning him the ATP World Tour Newcomer of the Year Award presented by Moët & Chandon.

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