Lu Adds To Record Challenger Title Haul
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
International Challenger Chengdu (Chengdu, China): Top seed Yen Hsun Lu of Chinese Taipei picked up a staggering 28th ATP Challenger Tour title by defeating second seed Evgeny Donskoy of Russia 6-3, 6-4. The 33 year old wins his second title of the year (Taipei City) and is now 20-3 in Challenger finals since 2008. Donskoy was seeking his second Challenger win of 2017 after prevailing this March in Zhuhai.
Thindown Challenger (Biella, Italy): Fifth seed Filip Krajinovic of Serbia saved his best tennis for the final by defeating local favourite Salvatore Caruso 6-3, 6-2. The 25 year old has won three Challenger titles this year after also prevailing in Heilbronn in May and this past month in Marburg. Caruso was appearing in his first Challenger final.
Open Castilla y Leon (Segovia, Spain): In an entertaining final, Jaume Munar delighted the home crowd by prevailing over Alex De Minaur of Australia 6-3, 6-4. The week was a remarkable turnaround for Munar, who had only won a single main draw match this year at the Challenger level. The Spaniard is currently No. 301 in the Emirates ATP Rankings, but will surpass his career-high ranking of No. 243 when the newest standings are released on Monday.
De Minaur drops to 0-2 in Challenger finals. The 18 year old has already jumped nearly 150 spots in the Emirates ATP Rankings this year and will move inside the Top 200 on Monday.
Kentucky Bank Tennis Championships (Lexington, Kentucky): Fourth seed and #NextGenATP American Michael Mmoh scored a 4-6, 7-6(2), 6-3 upset over third seed John Millman of Australia. Mmoh served to stay in the match at 5-6 in the second set, but rebounded to win his first Challenger title of the year and second overall. Millman was aiming to prevail again in Lexington after taking the title in 2015.
Svijany Open (Liberec, Czech Republic): Fourth seed Pedro Sousa of Portugal picked up his second Challenger title of the year by defeating Guilherme Clezar of Brazil 6-4, 5-7, 6-2. The 29 year old also finished runner-up last week in Tampere. Sousa won his maiden Challenger crown this February in Francavilla.
A LOOK AHEAD
There are four Challengers on the schedule this week, with a new $150,000 event in Jinan, China, taking top billing. Lu and Donskoy return as the top two seeds, while #NextGenATP South Koreans Duchkee Lee and Soon Woo Kwon are the third and sixth seeds, respectively.
The $100,000 event in Aptos, California, celebrates its 30th consecutive year of play. Past champions include Andy Murray, Patrick Rafter and Marcos Baghdatis. Malek Jaziri of Tunisia is the top seed and Jordan Thompson of Australia is the second seed. Six #NextGenATP players are in the draw including Aussie Akira Santilan, Americans Taylor Fritz and Noah Rubin, and Alexander Bublik of Kazakhstan. An all-#NextGenATP battle also highlights the opening round as seventh seed Casper Ruud of Norway plays Quentin Halys of France.
The $50,000 Challenger in Floridablanca, Colombia, is back for the ninth consecutive year. Guido Pella of Argentina is the top seed and Victor Estrella Burgos of the Dominican Republic is the second seed. Local favourite and 2014 champion Alejandro Falla is also in the draw.
Lastly, the $50,000 event in Portoroz, Slovenia, returns for the fifth straight year. 2014 champion and local favourite Blaz Kavcic is the top seed, Peter Gojowczyk is the second seed and Krajinovic looks for another title is the sixth seed. An intriguing all-#NextGenATP first-round is also in the draw featuring De Minaur and Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece.
ATP CHALLENGER TOUR ON TWITTER: The ATP Challenger Tour has launched a dedicated Twitter account for the latest news and information about players and events. Follow @ATPChallenger at twitter.com/ATPChallenger.