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Tsonga outlasts Ljubicic in Metz final



Metz, France (Sports Network) - Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France outlasted Croatia's Ivan Ljubicic to win a three-set final Sunday at the Moselle Open.

The top-seeded Tsonga notched a 6-3, 6-7 (4-7), 6-3 victory in two hours, 36 minutes thanks to a strong service game. He won 86 percent of first-serve points and 68 percent of his service points overall.

Tsonga also forced Ljubicic into 13 break points and converted six of them on the way to his first title of 2011. He had lost to Robin Soderling in the Rotterdam title match back in February and fell to Andy Murray at the Queen's Club before Wimbledon.

The 10th-ranked Frenchman is 6-3 all-time in finals, and hadn't won a tournament since October 2009 in Tokyo.

"I am so happy to have won the title, it was a long time since I lifted a trophy and I am happy I was able to do here in Metz, in front of the French public," Tsonga said. "I knew it was going to be difficult. That's why I am not surprised about Ivan's come back in the second set. Matches against him are always based on two or three crucial points."

Ljubicic, who won the Metz crown back in 2005, was playing in his 24th ATP final. His last title came in April 2010 with a surprising run through the Indian Wells event.

"I feel I played as well as I could today," Ljubicic said. "For some reason the balls were a little slower and I felt my serve wasn't as effective. It was becoming very physical. There was a lot of long rallies and with Jo being younger and stronger, it was not good for me."

Tsonga, who collected $100,000 for the win, is 2-1 vs. Ljubicic this year and 3-3 overall.

09/25 15:53:10 ET