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Edmund fails Marrakech test but hits career high in rankings


By Jonathan Veal

Kyle Edmund chose to focus on a positive week as his wait for a first ATP Tour title goes on.

The British number one appeared primed to lift silverware for the first time on the main men's tour when he was paired with world number 355 Pablo Andujar in the Grand Prix Hassan II final in Marrakech.

But in his first final at this level Edmund, who got to the Australian Open semis in January, lost 6-2 6-2 to the Spaniard.

It was definitely a missed opportunity for the 23-year-old, but he will still advance to a career high ranking of 23 when the new list comes out on Monday.

"For me it was a good tournament, it was great experience for me," said Edmund on the ATP Tour's official website.

"It's been a good year so far, it's not the result I wanted, but nevertheless a good week for me."

Edmund will now head to Monte Carlo for the Masters 1000 that began on Sunday as the European clay-court swing begins.

The Briton was the heavy favourite coming into the match but he could not have endured a worse start, losing his first three service games as Andujar wrapped up the opening set in 40 minutes.

Any hopes of a comeback were soon dashed as Edmund again dropped his serve in the opening game of the second set.

He lost his own delivery a further two times as Andujar won a fourth ATP title and first since 2014.

The Spaniard said: "I played very well during the whole match, trying to make him move as much as I could.

"He attacks a lot and is a very strong player. I was very solid today and I'm very happy about that."

Meanwhile, Belgium's Elise Mertens won the Samsung Open in Switzerland with a straight sets victory over Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus on the final.

No. 2 seed Mertens won 7-5, 6-2 in Lugano.

At the Claro Open Colsanitas in Bogota, Spain's Lara Arruabarrena lost 6-2 6-4 to Slovakian Anna Karolina Schmiedlova.

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