Fognini dedicates Brasil Open title to Astori
Fabio Fognini dedicated his Brasil Open title to Davide Astori after recovering from a woeful start to beat Nicolas Jarry 1-6 6-1 6-4 on the ATP World Tour.
Fiorentina announced the passing of their captain earlier on Sunday, and the rest of the weekend's Serie A fixtures were subsequently postponed.
Italy's national number one Fognini was in action, however, and he paid his respects to Astori in an on-court interview after a narrow victory in Sao Paulo.
"I dedicate my success in Sao Paulo to Davide Astori," he said. "I did not know him personally but I want to dedicate this victory to him."
It took @fabiofogna until May (in Rome) last year to earn his 14th victory of the season.-- ATP World Tour (@ATPWorldTour) March 4, 2018
The Italian claimed win No. 14 of 2018 @BrasilOpenTenis on Sunday and with it, No. 6
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The second seed had ended Pablo Cuevas' 15-match winning run in Brazil on Saturday, but he floundered in the first set a day later and Jarry, appearing in his first Tour final, took advantage before looking to kick on.
However, Fognini's restored resolve saw off the Chilean's challenge and a hard-fought victory was belatedly secured after a tight third set.
Jarry had fought back from a set down in his prior three matches, but he did not allow Fognini to gain a foothold early in the final, winning the first 13 points to breeze into a 3-0 lead.
And Jarry continued to take advantage of a shoddy display from the Italian, swiftly wrapping up the first set in an impressive, aggressive showing.
A clearly frustrated Fognini regained some composure at the beginning of the second, though, and broke his opponent's serve for the first time to move 3-0 up, the score going on to mirror the first set at 6-1.
Jarry was broken again and, although he pulled level again at 2-2, Fognini's experience ultimately told as he secured a sixth Tour singles title, his furrowed expression replaced with a smile before his emotions changed again to acknowledge Astori.