Daniel claims first Tour title in Istanbul
Taro Daniel continued a brilliant year as he claimed his first ATP Tour title, defeating Malek Jaziri 7-6 (7-4) 6-4 at the Istanbul Open.
The Japanese star, ranked 114th in the world, earned a victory over Novak Djokovic at the Indian Wells Masters earlier this season, but he had even greater cause for celebration on Sunday as he tasted tournament victory for the first time.
Daniel had never previously reached a semi-final, yet he was able to book his place in Sunday's showpiece with a win against Jeremy Chardy and found there another relative rookie in Jaziri.
And although Jaziri had knocked out top seed and defending champion Marin Cilic earlier in the competition, he was unable to halt Daniel.
He needed almost two-and-a-half hours to secure victory after two tight sets, the first requiring a tie-break and the second seeing the pair trade breaks with regularity.
It was no surprise then when Daniel let three match points slip, but he delivered with the fourth to end his wait for a title.