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Stefan Kozlov won his maiden ATP Challenger Tour title in Columbus.

#NextGen Kozlov Wins Maiden Challenger In Columbus

Revisit the week that was on the ATP Challenger Tour as we applaud the achievements of those on the rise and look ahead to who’s in action in the week to come

A LOOK BACK

Columbus Challenger (Columbus, Ohio): Fourth seed and #NextGen star Stefan Kozlov picked up his first Challenger title by defeating sixth seed and fellow American Tennys Sandgren, 6-1, 2-6, 6-2. The 18-year-old’s victory marks the third time in the past four weeks that an American teenager has won their maiden Challenger title, with Reilly Opelka prevailing in Charlottesville and Michael Mmoh winning in Knoxville. This is the 13th time a teenager has won a Challenger this year and Kozlov is now the 17th #NextGen winner overall. Kozlov rises 30 spots to a career-high Emirates ATP Ranking of No. 116.

American Teen Finalists In 2016

Player

Age
Tournament
Result
Taylor Fritz
18 yrs, 2 mos
Happy Valley (AUS)
Won title
Stefan Kozlov
18 yrs, 2 mos
Le Gosier (GP)
Runner-up
Frances Tiafoe
18 yrs, 3 mos
Tallahassee (USA)
Runner-up
Frances Tiafoe
18 yrs, 5 mos
Winnetka (USA)
Runner-up
Frances Tiafoe 18 yrs, 6 mos
Lexington (USA)
Runner-up
Frances Tiafoe
18 yrs, 6 mos
Granby (CAN)
Won title
Frances Tiafoe
18 yrs, 8 mos
Stockton (USA)
Won title
Michael Mmoh
18 yrs, 8 mos
Tiburon (USA)
Runner-up
Stefan Kozlov
18 yrs, 9 mos
Suzhou (CHN)
Runner-up
Stefan Kozlov
18 yrs, 9 mos
Columbus (USA)
Won title
Michael Mmoh
18 yrs, 10 mos
Knoxville (USA)
Won title
Reilly Opelka
19 yrs, 2 mos
Charlottesville (USA)
Won title
Jared Donaldson
19 yrs, 6 mos
Savannah (USA)
Runner-up
Ernesto Escobedo*
19 yrs, 10 mos
Sao Paulo (BRA)
Runner-up

*Escobedo won first Challenger title less than a month after turning 20 in July, in Lexington (USA)

Sandgren’s best two Challenger results this year have come in Columbus, with the 25-year-old reaching the semi-finals at the $50,000 event here in September.

Astana Challenger Capital Cup (Astana, Kazakhstan): Top seed and #NextGen star Yoshihito Nishioka of Japan won his second Challenger title of 2016 in a marathon final over second seed Denis Istomin of Uzbekistan, 6-4, 6-7(4), 7-6(3). The win also marks the first time two #NextGen stars have won Challenger tournaments in the same week. The 21-year-old Nishioka clinched his maiden Challenger title in July in Winnetka, Illinois. His win also ensures he will finish the year inside the Top 100 of the Emirates ATP Rankings.

Andria E Castel Del Monte Challenger (Andria, Italy): Fourth seed Luca Vanni won back-to-back Challenger titles in Italy by defeating fellow Italian and wild card Matteo Berrettini, 5-7, 6-0, 6-3. Vanni also prevailed last week on home soil in Brescia.

Despite the loss, the week was a career breakthrough for Berrettini, who had never reached a Challenger quarter-final prior to this week. The 20-year-old Italian jumped from No. 680 to No. 433 in the Emirates ATP Rankings with his performance in Andria.

WHAT'S AHEAD

That’s a wrap for the 2016 ATP Challenger Tour season. The circuit will be on a five-week hiatus before resuming with events in Australia, Thailand and New Caledonia in January.

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