Norrie comes from a set down to beat Nikoloz Basilashvili in the final; Norrie will rise into the world's top 20 thanks to the win; Norrie: "It's absolutely massive for me and my team. I can't really believe it."
Monday 18 October 2021 12:27, UK
Cameron Norrie became the first British tennis player to win the prestigious Indian Wells tournament by fighting back for a storming three-set victory on Sunday.
Norrie beat Nikoloz Basilashvili 3-6 6-4 6-1 in the final to cap his breakout year with victory in tennis's unofficial 'fifth major'.
The 26-year-old lifted the title after an hour and 49 minutes, recovering after being down a break at 3-1 in the second set to secure his second career title in his finest year on the circuit.
Norrie, who started the week ranked 26th, is now guaranteed a top-20 position and has become Britain's new No 1.
He was the first British player to reach the final at one of the ATP's nine elite Masters 1000 events since Andy Murray triumphed in Paris in 2016.
Speaking on-court after the match, Norrie said: "It means so much to me, my biggest title. I'm so happy, I can't even describe it right now.
"It's absolutely massive for me and my team. I can't really believe it."
Norrie's success caps a year in which he won his first title, at Los Cabos, Mexico, in July, and reached six finals in all - a feat matched only by World No 1 Novak Djokovic.
The Brit reached four other finals on three different surfaces - on the hardcourts of San Diego, the grass of Queen's, and on clay in Lyon and Estoril.
"I've been really enjoying my tennis and really been enjoying being out on court and competing in the big moments," he said.
"I'm just really pleased with how I handled the occasion, and I think I'm doing that a lot better this year. I know I lost in a lot of finals so it's nice to get the big one today."
Basilashvili said he was disappointed in the outcome but looked forward to returning to the event.
The tournament was not held last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic and was pushed from March to October this year because of the global health crisis.
It will return to its regular March date on the sports calendar next year.
"I was hoping to get a title, but it's okay," Basilashvili said. "I will move on and I hope that I'll come back here in March and play better tennis."
Norrie's successes have been a big part of a great year for British tennis, which also featured Emma Raducanu's remarkable victory at the US Open.
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