Sports Mole brings you live updates of Tomas Berdych's ATP World Tour Finals meeting with Jo-Wilfried Tsonga at London's O2 Arena.
By Liam Apicella, Features Editor Filed: Wednesday, November 7, 2012 at 19:40 UK
Last Updated: Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 07:15 UK
When these two players met at this stage of the ATP World Tour Finals last year, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga emerged the victor.
However, on this occasion the Czech Republic's Tomas Berdych came out on top of an encounter that went the distance.
Find out how the match unfolded over three sets with our minute-by-minute coverage below.
7.43pmEvening all. Okay, there might be some big Champions League matches on this evening, but we've got two of the biggest hitters on the circuit going at each other at the O2. Bring it on!
7.49pmIt's been a strange 12 months for Berdych. He started the year well and even reached the final of the Madrid Masters. However, after that he exited the French Open early and was humiliated at Wimbledon by a first-round defeat at both the Grand Slam and Olympics. Then he defeated Roger Federer at the US Open on his way to quarter-finals. So, topsy-turvy would be the best way to describe it!
7.50pmAnd of course he lost his opening match here on Monday to Andy Murray. Berdych took the first set, before conceding the other two to the world number three.
7.53pmMeanwhile, Tsonga has had a solid year. He won an impressive title in Dubai and produced credible displays at the French Open and Wimbledon. Following on from that, the hard courts have proved to be a little difficult for the Frenchman though.
7.56pmLike Berdych, JWT also lost his first match at the O2. In truth, he was swept aside by world number one Novak Djokovic in the end.
7.58pmAll of which means that a victory for both players is vital. A defeat means that they will realistically exit the competition. On Friday Tsonga will take on Murray, while Berdych comes up against Djokovic.
8.00pm"I'm feeling good. I will try to give my best like I did in the first match. I have to win this one. I need to be really consistent and really focused," Tsonga has just told Sky Sports News.
8.02pmMeanwhile, Berdych offers up: "I'm feeling good and ready for the match. We know each other and I'm expecting a tough one. I need to be focused on every single point."
8.03pmRight, the two players are making their way through the corridors. I expect Tsonga will get the louder reception. He's a real favourite wherever he goes.
8.04pmAnd I've been proved correct. That has put a big smile on Tsonga's face!
8.06pmBerydch loses the coin toss and Tsonga opts to serve. It appears that the Frenchman wants the start of this match to be in his hands.
8.09pmNot long now until we are off and running. The players are just running through a few service routines.
8.13pmRight, here we go. Tsonga will serve first...
Berdych *0-1 TsongaConfident stuff from Tsonga. The Frenchman is all about power and he showed it in abundance there.
Berdych 1-1* TsongaAnything Tsonga can do...It's a good start from both players here. Neither is getting a look in on the other player's serve during the opening exchanges.
Berdych *1-2 TsongaSheer power gets Tsonga through that one. Berdych managed to claim one point with a powerful forehand stroke. Despite losing the game, the Czech is showing some very good footwork.
Berdych 2-2* TsongaIt's an impressive hold to love by Berdych. He made Tsonga work very hard during that game, dragging the Frenchman around the court. Every point was on Berdych's terms. Good tennis.
Berdych *2-3 TsongaIt really is all about the serve at the moment. Tsonga is just too powerful for Berdych there. He appeared to favour to serve and volley routine during that game and when Tsonga comes to the net, he's that big that there is no getting beyond him! Such an imposing figure.
8.32pmHalf a chance for Tsonga as a stunning backhand shot brings up 30-30 on the Berdych serve.
Berdych 3-3* TsongaBut Berdych shuts the door on that opportunity. Tsonga gave him two short balls and they were only going one place - beyond him and away for points to Berdych!
8.36pmNow's it Berdych's turn to have an opening. He leads 15-30 on the Tsonga serve.
8.36pmTwo break points to Berdych as Tsonga hits into the net...
8.37pmA fantastic serve from the Frenchman sets up and easy passing shot. One down, one to save...
8.37pmAnd another cracking serve leaves Berdych flailing. That took courage. Deuce.
8.39pmAgain Tsonga can only hit the net. Break point Berdych...
8.40pmOh dear Berdych! He's got the whole court to hit with Tsonga stranded but he volleys long. What a waste that was. Deuce.
Berdych *3-4 TsongaBerdych has let Tsonga off in that game. The Frenchman was extremely inconsistent and should have been punished with a break. As it was, Berdych found the net with a return from a second serve and Tsonga escapes. It will be interesting to see if that now troubles Berdych during his service game.
Berdych 4-4* TsongaThis time Berdych is let off the hook. Tsonga was 0-30 up, only for the Czech to respond with four straight points. It feels as though a break of serve is coming.
Berdych *4-5 TsongaIt's a comfortable hold at a crucial time for Tsonga. Now comes the first real bit of pressure for Berdych. He is serving to stay in the set.
Berdych 5-5* TsongaPressure? What pressure? Emphatic stuff from Berdych with a game that also included his second ace of the match. Over to you Mr Tsonga.
Berdych *6-5 TsongaBREAK! Tsonga goes long and you've got to say that over the opening 40 minutes or so, Berdych deserves it. He attacked Tsonga's serve in that game and got his reward. Now he will serve for the set.
9.00pmA lucky lofted shot from Tsonga just bounces in. Still two set points for Berdych.
Berdych 7-5 0-0* TsongaACE! SET! Brilliant way to bring up the set for Berdych. He was the better player, no doubt. Tsonga looks a little flat, as does the crowd. However, the Frenchman should take solace from the fact that Berdych won the opening set against Murray but still lost the match.
Berdych 7-5 *0-1 TsongaAnd he does so in style! It's a love hold for Tsonga. That's just what he needed after the opening set. Now he must try and attack Berdych's serve.
Berdych 7-5 1-1* TsongaBerdych doesn't let him attack though. It's confident stuff from the Czech. You get the feeling that he is still controlling this match.
Berdych 7-5 *1-2 TsongaIt's by no means pretty, but Tsonga gets the hold. Berdych got himself up to 30 points though and you feel that another break of the Tsonga serve is coming. He's been really off-colour tonight.
9.15pmHang on a minute! Two break points for Tsonga as Berdych volleys wide...
9.15pmThe first one is saved by Berdych. One left...
9.16pmAnd Tsonga goes long with the second one. That's disappointing and a waste by the Frenchman.
9.18pmBut he gets a third chance as Berdych is rushed into playing long. Break point Tsonga...
Berdych 7-5 1-3* TsongaBREAK! Finally the Tsonga we know has decided to turn up! He's rushing Berdych now and that has forced the mistakes. Really important that he holds now.
Berdych 7-5 *1-4 TsongaBlink and you would have missed that! It's rapid stuff from Tsonga, who looks a different player. Had he played like this in the first set, he'd be closing in on the victory.
Berdych 7-5 2-4* TsongaBerdych holds but Tsonga does not look at all concerned. It seems as though he is focused on holding his remaining service games.
Berdych 7-5 *2-5 TsongaHe really is flying through these service games at the moment is Tsonga. The role reversal in this set has been amazing. Have to say I did not see this coming around 20 minutes ago.
Berdych 7-5 3-5* TsongaA love hold for Berdych but it's the next service game that really matters. Tsonga has lost just four points on his serve in this set. One more hold and we will have a decider.
9.32pmTwo unforced errors from Tsonga bring up 0-30 for Berdych. Surely Tsonga won't waste this chance, will he?
9.40pmBerdych smashes the first one away. There's one left for Tsonga...
9.41pmAnd Tsonga goes long with the second. The chance goes a begging for the Frenchman. Deuce.
Berdych 7-5 3-6 1-0* TsongaWhat a great game for Berdych to win. He saved two break points after having just lost the second set. Great character. Tsonga to serve.
Berdych 7-5 3-6 *1-1 TsongaSolid tennis from JWT. Just what he needed after spurning two break points. This one is too tough to call at the moment.
Berdych 7-5 3-6 2-1* TsongaWell that was rather nippy. Berdych must have a train to catch or something! He flew through that game. He has rediscovered the serve that eluded him in the second set.
Berdych 7-5 3-6 *3-1 TsongaBREAK! Berdych is really not hanging about now. In the blink of an eye he breaks Tsonga and has a firm grip on this match.
Berdych 7-5 3-6 4-1* TsongaBerdych clinches his fist tightly as Tsonga fires wide. He knows how important it was to hold there. He now needs just two games to win this match. Tsonga requires inspiration from somewhere because at the moment he looks to have run out of ideas.
10.06pmWell that was a strange last set. Tsonga had two break points at the start and looked to be heading for the victory. However, Berdych held out and then proceeded to motor towards the finishing line. Overall he deserved it - he was the better player over three sets.
10.08pm"Finally I was able to break my run in London this year. I like to play here. I'm happy to have this one, it was quite important. I was trying to focus on myself and to go for the positive things," Berdych says to Sky Sports News during his post-match interview.
10.09pmThat's just about all we have time for from the O2 this evening. However, we'll be back tomorrow for Roger Federer vs. David Ferrer, which is due to get underway at 1.45pm. See you then.