Ward falls at final hurdle in Australia

By Philip James

James Ward 2-6 3-6 Matthew Barton

James Ward was beaten in the final of the Charles Sturt Adelaide International today by Australian Matthew Barton.

Ward had played impressively en route to the Challenger Tour final, beating seventh seed James Duckworth and top seed Yuichi Sugita as well as qualifier Sean Berman and wildcard Nick Kyrgios.

However home-favourite Barton, who did not lose a set all tournament, proved too strong for Londoner Ward, who is the third highest ranked British player at 263 in the world.

While Barton is currently ranked 82 places lower than Ward he has enjoyed a strong start to 2013 rising over 80 positions already.