Tennis is a cruel sport, we often hear. But there are times when it can be kind, too. Steve Johnson and Pablo Andujar, and any fans who have followed their ups and downs over the last year, found that out again on Sunday. The American and the Spaniard rediscovered that, with its never-ending schedule, the sport always offers a second—or 10th, or 100th—chance for a player to triumph over his or her troubles at least for a week. They also rediscovered that, on the tour’s long and winding road, some places really do feel like home.
On Sunday in Marrakech, Andujar became the first player to win the Grand Prix Hassan II for a third time, with a surprisingly one-sided 6-2, 6-2 victory over Kyle Edmund. Andujar also became the lowest-ranked man since Lleyton Hewitt in 1998 to win a title. As of Sunday, Andujar was 355th in the world; as of two months ago, he was lost in the ATP ether at No. 1,824.
CHAMPIONSHIP POINT: Andujar vs. Edmund, Marrakech