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Kyrgios shows glimpse of unending talent with first career win

There was no sensational trash-talking, umpire-baiting or verbal sparring with spectators this time. On Sunday, Nick Kyrgios made headlines for all the right reasons.

Behind a smoking serve and fierce focus and determination, Kyrgios blitzed former US Open champion Marin Cilic 6-2, 7-6 (3) in the final of the ATP 250 in Marseilles, France, as the 20-year-old Australian won his first main-tour title.

Kyrgios' march -- perhaps "sprint" is the better word -- to the championship had all the earmarks of a major, perhaps career-shaping, statement. Kyrgios didn't lose a set or have to play a tiebreaker heading into the championship match. His serve was never broken, which is something no previous first-time ATP tour champ -- not Novak Djokovic, not Roger Federer, not Rafael Nadal -- had ever managed.

Kyrgios logged 47 consecutive service holds during the week and fired 17 aces in the final.

"I didn't really expect to win this title this week after having a couple of weeks off," Kyrgios told the press afterward. "But from the first round I started playing really well and just gained confidence as I kept winning matches."

As tournaments go, this one was a template for Kyrgios -- while providing rivals with a glimpse of what might lie in store.

Kyrgios is naturally inclined to play at a breakneck pace. He's the anti-Rafa. The Aussie's ability to blaze through 90-second service games puts his opponents under intense pressure, and he takes full advantage of it with an explosive return game.

"He served amazing," Cilic told the press. "[Also], he was returning well. I didn't adjust well enough to the balls that were coming back."

Kyrgios became the third-youngest player to win a tour event since 2009. The other two are No. 13 Milos Raonic, winner of San Jose in 2011, and Kyrgios' fellow countryman No. 20 Bernard Tomic, who won Apia International Sydney in 2013.

Kyrgios is seven months older than Tomic was when he his first title. But in the interim, life has only gotten tougher for under-21 talents such as Borna Coric, Alexander Zverev, Hyeon Chung and others.

Many have walked this path before and demonstrated that spectacular shot-making, loads of reserve power and cat-quick movement take you only so far. Grigor "Baby Federer" Dimitrov was a comparably electric prodigy. Two years ago, he was a Wimbledon semifinalist, but now 25 years old, he hasn't won a tournament since the summer of 2013.

While Kyrgios was busy winning in Marseilles, Dimitrov was losing a semifinal in Delray Beach against No. 89 Rajeev Ram.

Kyrgios powered through two top-10 opponents in Marseilles. He dropped a grand total of just 10 games in back-to-back wins over No. 10 Richard Gasquet, who denied Kyrgios his first ATP final at last year's Estoril Open final, and No. 8 Tomas Berdych.

Tennis fans and pundits have followed Kyrgios with bated breath over the last tumultuous year, anxiously waiting for his maturity to catch up to his talent.

The wait may be over.