Kyle Edmund chose to focus on a positive week as his wait for a first ATP Tour title goes on.
He appeared primed to lift silverware for the first time on the main men’s tour when he was paired with world No 355 Pablo Andujar in the Grand Prix Hassan II final in Marrakech.
But in his first final at this level, Edmund, who got to the Australian Open semis, lost 6-2 6-2 to the Spaniard. It was a missed opportunity for the 23-year-old, but he will still advance to a career-high ranking of 23 when the new list comes out today.
“It was a good tournament, it was great experience for me,” said Edmund on the ATP Tour’s official website. “It’s been a good year so far. It’s not the result I wanted, but nevertheless a good week for me.”
Edmund will now head to Monte Carlo for the Masters 1000 that began yesterday as the European clay-court swing begins.
The Briton was the heavy favourite coming into the match but he could not have endured a worse start, losing his first three service games as Andujar wrapped up the opening set in 40 minutes.
Any hopes of a comeback were soon dashed as Edmund again dropped his serve in the opening game of the second set.
He lost his own delivery a further two times as Andujar won a fourth ATP title and first since 2014.
The Spaniard said: “I played very well during the whole match, trying to make him move as much as I could. He attacks a lot and is a very strong player. I was very solid today.”
Anna Karolina Schmiedlova claimed a third WTA Tour career title after tasting success in the Claro Open Colsanitas in Bogota.
The Slovakian, ranked 132 in the world before this win, downed favourite Lara Arruabarrena 6-2 6-4. It was her first title since 2015 and sees her return to the top 100. Elise Mertens won her second title of 2018 by lifting the Samsung Open in Lugano. The 22-year-old beat Aryna Sabalenka 7-5 6-2.