Andy Murray was happy with his consistency after winning his maiden China Open title against Grigor Dimitrov in Beijing.
It was the 29-year-old’s fifth tournament victory of the year, which includes Wimbledon and a gold medal at the Olympic Games in Rio, in what was his ninth final of the season.
He told Sky Sports: “It’s been the most consistent year of my career, getting to the latter stages of most of the events I have played.
“It was a great week for me. Today’s match was a very high-level match. Grigor fought right to the end and made it extremely tough to finish it in two sets.
“It’s been an excellent week and I’m very happy with the way that I have played the last couple of matches. I will look forward to Shanghai now.”
World No 2 Murray did not drop a set throughout the tournament and continues his quest to top the world rankings as he closes the gap on current world No 1 Novak Djokovic.
The Scot got off to the best possible start by breaking Dimitrov serve in the opening game of the match before holding his own to double his advantage at the beginning of the first set.
In game seven, the Scot had two chances to gain another break and though Dimitrov held on to close the gap to 4-3, Murray closed the set out 6-4 despite landing only 29 per cent of his first serves.
That gradually improved in the second set to a final figure of 49 per cent, Murray winning 73 per cent of those points.
He was aided by unforced errors by his opponent before he turned the screw with the first break in the second set to go 3-2 up after Dimitrov dragged a forehand wide.
The Bulgarian continued to struggle with the Murray serve and added to his downfall with more unforced errors as the 29-year-old had the opportunity to serve for the championship.
But Dimitrov made a timely first break of the match to tie the set at 5-5 before both men held with ease once again and headed into a tie-breaker.
Murray gained the mini-break with the first point and though Dimitrov hit back, Murray won six of the next seven points to earn his maiden China Open title.
The newly-crowned champion will remain in China as he returns to action at next week’s Shanghai Rolex Masters.
Despite defeat, Dimitrov was relieved to have performed for his fans in China after recent poor displays in Asia.
He told Sky Sports: “I never had good results out here in China and I’m finally happy I did this time. Hopefully I can continue like that for the rest of the year.
“I’m just glad that I fought so hard this tournament. It meant a lot to me. Andy is one of the toughest competitors out there – no doubt. On to Shanghai.”
Elsewhere, Australia’s Nick Kyrgios secured the biggest victory of his career with a 4-6 6-3 7-5 win over Belgium’s David Goffin at the Rakuten Japan Open in Tokyo.
The 21-year-old served 25 aces on his way to victory and even fought back from 4-5 and love-30 down in the final set to win the final three games and earn his third title of the year.