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2004 Dec 05 - Courier wins Masters title

Jim Courier claimed his first Masters Tennis title at the Royal Albert Hall in London with an impressive 7-6(5) 6-4 victory against Austrian Thomas Muster in the final.

The amiable American was favourite to win the 100,000 winner-takes-all even, and it wasn't difficult to see why, as he still retains his superb level of fitness, heavy first serve and devastating forehand winners. Even four-time champion John McEnroe with all his guile couldn't stay with Jim in the semi-finals.

After the match Jim said:

"It was a challenging match physically and Thomas caught me off guard in the first set with how aggressive he was.

"When you haven't been in the position too many times recently it can be challenging to try and finish a match off.

"Fortunately I've never had too many problems doing that. You just have to believe in yourself and go for your shots."

And defeated finalist Thomas Muster added:

"It was a great atmosphere and a very fair game.

"He was the better player all week. To get to the final was a surprise for me and I hope to be back next year to try to win the crown."

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