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Johnson beats Bellucci in Houston final

A tie-break decided the US Men's Clay Court Championship, with Steve Johnson edging Thomaz Bellucci in a tight encounter.

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US player Steve Johnson.

Steve Johnson claimed the second ATP title of his career with a 6-4 4-6 7-6 (7-5) victory over Thomaz Bellucci at the US Men's Clay Court Championship on Sunday.

Johnson was playing in his third final on a third different surface and came up against a player whose four titles have come on clay.

However, it was the fourth-seeded American who prevailed in Houston, despite losing the opening game of the first set on his own serve.

It became a recurring theme of the match that Johnson would concede the first break of the set and he proved unable to recover after losing the ninth game of the second, allowing eighth seed Bellucci to level.

However, after going 2-0 down in the decider, Johnson - whose only previous title came at last year's Nottingham Open - managed to force a tie-break.

True to form, Johnson opened by conceding a break of serve but responded with three of his own to come away with the win, wrapping up the title on the third match point.

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