The 2012 ATP Los Angeles final sees Ricardas Berankis up against two-time American champion Sam Querrey.
Ranked 141 when he arrived in Los Angeles, Berankis will now be guaranteed a place back inside the world's top 100 after reaching the first ATP final of his career and if he wins this final he'll move up to 75 in the rankings, dangerously close to the career high of 73 which he reached before a pelvic fracture kept him out for most of last season.
The Lithuanian had to come through qualifying last weekend but he's since stunned Bjorn Phau, Igor Andreev, Nicolas Mahut and Marinko Matosevic to make the final.
“It’s really amazing,” Berankis said. “I really didn’t even think of it before coming here. You still have it in your mind a little bit, but when you come to play qualies it’s difficult to think of the final. Still, I had that belief in myself. I’m feeling great on the court at the moment and looking forward to tomorrow.”
Berankis demoralized Matosevic in Saturday's semis by breaking him to love at 5-5 in the first set before cruising through the second to win 7-5, 6-1. “When a guy gets broken at the end of the first set, he’s not so good emotionally,” Berankis said. “I think I tried to use it as quick as possible, one or two mistakes (by Matosevic) and here it comes, it’s 15-all or 15-30, and also to put pressure on his second serve. That’s when you get chances to break again.”
He'll be up against it when he faces second seed Querrey who hasn't dropped a set all week. Berankis will be conceding 10 inches in height to the 6'6 big serving American but he has the game to push him close.
Prediction: Querrey in three.