Agassi ends title drought with victory over Hewitt

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The Independent Online

Andre Agassi ended a 16-month title drought when he beat Lleyton Hewitt 6-3, 3-6, 6-2 in the final of the Cincinnati Masters here last night.

Andre Agassi ended a 16-month title drought when he beat Lleyton Hewitt 6-3, 3-6, 6-2 in the final of the Cincinnati Masters here last night.

Agassi, who knocked out the defending champion, Andy Roddick, in the semi-finals, completed his 59th career victory when 10th-seeded Hewitt committed his fifth double fault on Agassi's second match point.

"It's pretty amazing, it couldn't come at a better time for me," said Agassi, who was seeded 11th. After struggling all year to make his first final since last November, Agassi said he had regained confidence for the US Open at the end of the month. "It certainly means I go in with a lot of belief," he added.

Hewitt, who also lost in the 2002 final, netted a volley to lose his serve in the eighth game, and Agassi served out the first set. But Agassi dropped the eighth game of the second and the Australian levelled after 75 minutes. Hewitt, however, couldn't hold the baseline rallies with Agassi and his backhand failed again when he was broken in the third game of the third set. Hewitt put himself in trouble he couldn't get out of in the final game.

It is Agassi's third Cincinnati title, after successive championships in 1995 and 1996.

Meanwhile, in Montreal, France's Amélie Mauresmo claimed her third title of the year when she crushed unseeded Elena Likhovtseva 6-1, 6-0 to win the Montreal Cup last night.

Second seed Mauresmo, who lifted the Montreal title two years ago, stormed past the 28-year-old Russian in just 51 minutes. Mauresmo will rise to No 2 in the world when the new rankings are published today.

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