Canberra ACT, Australia, 5 November 2017 | David Packman

Matt Ebden has continued his successful return this year after the taking out the Apis Canberra International title on Sunday.

“I couldn’t ask for much more in the final, especially to get through in straight sets,” he said.

Holding 11 ATP Challenger titles between them and both being former top 100 players, Ebden and his opponent Taro Daniel of Japan, the third seed, provided a showcase final but in the end the West Australian proved too strong, winning 7-6(3) 6-4.

Ebden, the No.2 seed, was first out of the blocks, breaking early, but Daniel pulled it back to force the opening set tiebreaker. However, some solid serving from Ebden proved pivotal in clinching the set, in which he won an impressive 92% of points on his first serve.

It remained tight at the start of the second set, before Ebden once again surged ahead, dropping to the ground as he celebrated his seventh ATP Challenger title – and his third on home soil.

After missing most of 2016 with injury, Ebden, 29, has bounced back this year, highlighted by a maiden ATP Tour final in Newport after coming through qualifying. The win on Sunday ensures he will re-enter the top 100; the first time since September 2014.

“It’s just about continuing on for me,” he said. “I feel like I’ve been playing some very good tennis over the last few months particularly. I just need to keep pushing myself to bring that consistent high level day in and day out.”

Ebden heads to Japan on Monday to close out his season.

In the men’s doubles final on Saturday, third-seeded South Australians Alex Bolt and Bradley Mousley defeated fellow Aussies Luke Saville and Andrew Whittington 6-3 6-2 in just under an hour.

Bolt and Mousley have proved to be a formidable combination this year combining to making the quarterfinals of Australian Open 2017 and winning 14 of 16 matches together.  They have now won back to back ATP Challenger titles after also taking out the Latrobe City Traralgon ATP Challenger.

After surviving a scare in the quarterfinals, they were happy with how they played in the final. “I thought we definitely played some pretty good doubles together but we definitely saved our best match for today,” Bolt said.

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