BANGKOK - Second-seeded Richard Gasquet won his first tournament of the year when he beat former champion Gilles Simon 6-2, 6-1 in an all French final of the Thailand Open at the Impact Arena Muang Thong Thani on Sunday.
The No. 14-ranked Gasquet, who last won a title in Nice in 2011, routed the fourth-seeded 2009 champion in just 68 minutes, for his seventh career victory. He became the third Frenchman to win in Bangkok since Jo-Wilfried Tsonga's victory in 2008.
"He's French player and a friend of mine. It's a bit strange. I have won tough matches this week. It's good for me because I had to come back to win twice in a week," Gasquet said. "It's my seventh title. I'm really happy."
Playing with a right-knee injury Simon, who has never beaten Gasquet, started brightly by securing an early break but failed to capitalize on his advantage. Gasquet proved more accurate with his groundstrokes, breaking the error-prone Simon in the sixth game to lead 4-2. Gasquet then held his serve and broke again to take the opening set when Simon hit a forehand wide.
Simon stretched his knee before the second set and again started by breaking Gasquet. But he appeared sluggish and tended to falter first in longer rallies. Trailing 5-1, Simon saved two match points but Gasquet hit a backhand crosscourt winner to wrap up the match.
Simon said the injury affected him during throughout the game.
"It happened right before the match. It was OK this morning. But when I started warming up before the match, I started to feel something there," Simon said. "It was harder to push for my right play every time. When you have so many injuries, it's difficult because you just don't know. You have to play with it. You don't know if it's gonna be worse if you push. "