American top seed Andy Roddick claimed his first title of the season and a measure of revenge with a 7-5, 7-5 victory over Czech Radek Stepanek in the final of the Memphis Championships on Sunday.
Roddick, who lost to Stepanek in the semi-finals of the San Jose Open last week, ended his opponent's bid for back-to-back titles when he converted on his second match point to clinch a 27th career title.
"A week ago (in San Jose) I felt like I was in control of the match but he played better when it counted on the big points," Roddick told reporters. "I played better today on the big points.
"Right now I'm looking at it as a process and it's great to win a title.
"It's nice to get it out of the way before it becomes an issue."
Memphis champion in 2002 and runner-up in 2003 and 2007, Roddick got off to bright start with an early break to race 3-0 ahead on his way to securing the opening set, the first taken from Stepanek all week.
In the second set, both players held serve throughout, Roddick saving two break points at 15-40 in the ninth game and one more break point in the 11th game with one of his eight aces.
Leading 6-5 and Stepanek serving to stay in the match, Roddick set up a triple match point and while the fifth seed was able to stave off the first, the 26-year-old American sealed victory on his next attempt.
"I had some break chances in the second set and couldn't convert and that was the difference," said Stepanek. "His game is based around his serve and he served really well when he had to.
"We had a great match and a lot of good rallies. The only difference was break points and I couldn't convert when I had chances."