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Tsonga eyes revenge over Djokovic in Thai Open final

Latest update : 2008-09-28

The towering Jo-Wilfried Tsonga thrashed fellow Frenchman Gael Monfils 6-0, 6-3 in the semi-final of the Thailand Open to set up a replay of the Australian Open final against world number three Novak Djokovic.

Top seed Novak Djokovic booked his place in the final of the $576,000 Thailand Open with a stylish 7-5 6-1 win over third seed Tomas Berdych.

Djokovic's opponent will be second-seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga who surged to a commanding 6-0 6-3 victory over fourth seed Gael Monfils.

Djokovic had fortune on his side when he clinched a close first set with a powerful backhand that crashed off the top of the net and landed way out of the Czech's reach.

Playing in the Thailand Open semis for a second successive year, Berdych fought hard and was unlucky to lose the second set 6-1.

Sunday's final against Tsonga will be a repeat of this year's Australian Open final in which Djokovic beat the giant-killing Frenchman in four sets.

In the other semi, Monfils did not stand a chance as Tsonga, rapidly gaining confidence after a long injury layoff, unleashed a stream of stinging topspin-loaded returns which kept his compatriot on the back foot throughout the 52-minute match.

Tsonga, playing only his second tournament since undergoing knee surgery in May, was surprised by his form.

"I played unbelievable tennis today," Tsonga told reporters.

"For this tournament I didn't expect this. I didn't move so well but I hit the ball really hard."

Ranked 20th, Tsonga raced through the first set in just 21 minutes, prompting his helpless opponent to smash his racket on the floor in frustration.

The crowd let out a huge roar when Monfils won his first game in the second set, but the in-form Tsonga was giving little away, serving and volleying and smashing the ball low into the corners of the court.

Asked about the match with Djokovic, Tsonga said: "It will be a different match and different conditions, but it would be my chance to take my revenge."

Date created : 2008-09-27