#NextGenATP Korda Claims First Title In Parma

First American to win on European clay in 11 years

#NextGenATP Sebastian Korda capped off a great week at the Emilia-Romagna Open with a 6-2, 6-4 victory over home favourite Marco Cecchinato on Saturday to win his first ATP Tour trophy.

With the victory, Korda became the first American since Sam Querrey in 2010 Belgrade (d. Isner) to lift a trophy on European clay.

The son of former World No. 2 Petr Korda, Sebastian’s win also makes the Kordas the third father-son duo to win tour-level singles titles in the Open Era. They join Ramanathan Krishnan and Ramesh Krishnan, and Phil Dent and Taylor Dent on the short list. 

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“This is something that I’ve dreamed of,” Korda said in his post-match press conference. “I really thought I was going to get it done in Delray Beach [earlier this year], and I was a little heartbroken.

“But I stayed positive, even with such a bad first part of the clay-court season. I took a couple of days off, recharged my batteries, and had a really good practice week in Prague with my dad and my coach. I came back hungrier, and I’m playing some really good tennis now.”

The 20-year-old quickly found his footing on the surface with wins over Andreas Seppi, top seed Lorenzo Sonego, eighth seed Yoshihito Nishioka and countryman Tommy Paul without dropping a set.

Contesting the second ATP Tour final of his career – and his first on clay courts – Korda showed no signs of nerves against Cecchinato. He faced only one break point in the match, coming late in the second set as the Italian rallied his home crowd, but he responded with confident first serves to see off the challenge.

“Today I played a really tough opponent and the crowd wasn’t easy,” Korda said. “They kept cheering him on, but I’m really proud of myself and how I handled it.”

Korda won 82 per cent of points behind his first serve (31/38) across one hour and 15 minutes against the Italian. He converted three of the six break opportunities he created, including the decisive break at 5-4 on Cecchinato’s serve to clinch the title.