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[3] Li Tu (AUS) def [2] Skander Mansouri (TUN) 6-7(3), 6-4, 7-6(4)

Li Tu went more than seven years without a tour win between 2014 and 2021, after taking time away from professional tennis.

He’s now won seven titles in less than nine months on the ITF tour after claiming his third of the year in Monastir, Tunisia.

Tu worked his way through the ITF 25K draw with relative ease before defeating local hope Skander Mansouri in a tight three set final.

The 26-year-old from Adelaide went up 5-2 in the opener before finding himself down a set and with it all to do. Tu led 4-2 again in the second set, but this time fended off all six break points he faced to force a third, eventually prevailing in a deciding set tiebreak.

Defeating Mansouri on his home courts is no easy feat with the Tunisian having reached 15 of his last 16 singles finals in Monastir. However, Tu was able to reverse the result of last week’s final where he was comfortably beaten 6-4, 6-2, making this victory undoubtedly one of his best to date.

The Australian has now won 16 of his past 17 matches, lifting two titles in Africa throughout the streak.

He has earned a further 33 ranking points over the past fortnight, which will be added to his tally next week, pushing him toward and possibly inside the ATP top 300.

Tu will be straight back on court tonight as the No. 1 seed in Tunis Qualifying, eyeing a return to an ATP Challenger main draw for the first time since 2014.

Meanwhile, on the ITF tour, Andrew Harris won his first career ITF doubles title in the Czech Republic, Aaron Addison claimed his third doubles crown in Greece, and in Tunisia, Akira Santillan made it two doubles titles in as many weeks.

Elsewhere, Adam and Jason Taylor, Kimberly Birrell, Alexandra Osborne, and Omar Jasika all fell just short of claiming doubles titles. And 21-year-old Tristan Schoolkate maintained his strong form at ITF level, reaching a fourth singles semi-final for 2022.


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