Juan Monaco clinched his fourth title of the year and kept Julien Benneteau waiting for his first ATP crown when he won the Malaysian Open 7-5 4-6 6-3.
Benneteau has now reached seven ATP finals and lost every one of them, but for Monaco the success keeps his hopes alive of qualifying for November's World Series Finals in London.
The match lasted three hours and came a day after Monaco, the second seed, came through a tight semi-final against Japan's Kei Nishikori.
Monaco took home the trophy and $153,440 in prize money, while Benneteau had to be content with the runner-up prize of $80,815.
"It was an excellent game and I will never forget the Malaysian Open as it has brought me my first hard-court title," the clay-court specialist said.
"I saw Benneteau receiving treatment (for an injury)but he still fought hard and never game up. I had to come out more aggressively in the third set and it helped me to get my first hard court title."