From the "English isn't my first language" department....

Belgian tennis player David Goffin thanked his "girlfriends" after losing the Rotterdam Open final to Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, before doing a quick u-turn.

World No. 11 Goffin is on the verge of becoming the first male Belgian player to enter the tennis top 10, but his losing finalist speech briefly overshadowed this impending achievement.

He gave the usual thanks, to friends and family, but broke new ground by thanking his "girlfriends" before inserting a correction - "without the S".


Tsonga clinched his 13th career title, rallying from a set down to beat Goffin 4-6, 6-4, 6-1.

The sixth-seeded Frenchman hit 10 aces and, although he dropped his serve twice, he broke the third-seeded Goffin's serve four times.

Tsonga, ranked 14, lost the final in Rotterdam six years ago. His previous title also came on indoor hardcourts in Metz, France, two years ago.

"I'm really happy. The last couple of months I put in a lot of effort to come back to this level," Tsonga said. "It's a huge reward for me and it gives me new expectations for the rest of the year."

The powerful Tsonga changed his approach to play more to his strengths and dictate points more.

"I changed my serve and worked a lot on my backhand and my returns. I also changed my strings. There were many things to improve my game," he said. "In the second set, I showed a different mentality on court. I was more aggressive and it made the difference."

He improved to 4-2 overall in career meetings against the 11th-ranked Goffin, who won both of his career titles in 2014.

The 31-year-old Tsonga reached the milestone of 400 career wins this week, and victory in the final was his 401st.

"I was a bit tired. I started the final really well, but in the end Jo played better than me," the 26-year-old Goffin said. "Of course I'm disappointed, but I played some good tennis."

- With AP