Robert Claims Slice Of Challenger History With Burnie Title
It has been a historic week on the ATP Challenger Tour. Former World No. 4 Kei Nishikori is stealing the spotlight with a run to the final at the $125,000 event in Dallas, but the Japanese star's comeback to professional tennis is not the only headline-grabbing story on the circuit.
At the age of 37 years and 8 months, Stephane Robert became the second-oldest winner in Challenger history on Saturday in Burnie, Australia. The Frenchman routed Daniel Altmaier 6-1, 6-2 in just 63 minutes to lift the trophy. Only Dick Norman was older (38 years, 1 month) when he claimed the title in Mexico City in 2009.
The win for Robert continues a hot streak for the 37-year-old, who has now captured two Challenger crowns in three months (Kobe, Japan) and also reached the final in Izmir, Turkey, in September. Having ascended to a career-high of No. 50 in the ATP Rankings in 2016, nine-time Challenger champion Robert is surging towards a Top 100 return in his comeback from injury. He is projected to rise to No. 164 on Monday.
Oldest Challenger Titlists
|Dick Norman||38 years, 1 month||Mexico City 2009|
|Stephane Robert||37 years, 8 months||Burnie 2018|
|Bob Carmichael||37 years, 6 months||Hobart 1978|
|Stephane Robert||37 years, 5 months||Kobe 2017
|Victor Estrella Burgos||37 years||Santo Domingo 2017|