Humbert's Milan Charge: #NextGenATP Rises To Ninth With Ortisei Crown
If Ugo Humbert is to qualify for the Next Gen ATP Finals, he will have done so in dramatic fashion. His surge to the Top 10 of the ATP Race To Milan is already the most impressive climb in the brief two-year history of the tournament.
On Sunday, Humbert moved to within striking distance of the seven qualification spots, rising to ninth with the title at the ATP Challenger Tour event in Ortisei, Italy. The 20-year-old was a blur on the blazing fast hard courts of Ortisei, downing top seed Pierre-Hugues Herbert 6-4, 6-2 in the final.
Just three months ago, Humbert was sitting in 30th position in his quest to qualify for Milan. 30th! He was so far from being in contention that even he admitted that there was "little chance" of punching his ticket to the 21 & under season finale. But, after securing his maiden title in Segovia, qualifying for his first Grand Slam at the US Open, winning his first ATP World Tour match in Metz and adding a second crown this week in Ortisei, Humbert has catapulted up the standings.
Ugo's Stunning Stretch
|8 October||Ortisei CH||Won Title|
|24 September||Orleans CH
|17 September||Moselle Open (Metz)||First ATP World Tour match win|
|3 September||Cassis CH||Runner-up|
|27 August||US Open||First Grand Slam match win|
|30 July||Segovia CH||Won Title|
|23 July||Granby CH||Runner-up|
|16 July||Gatineau CH||Runner-up|
In fact, the Frenchman has been the top performer on the Challenger circuit in that three month span, registering a 23-4 record. Incredibly, he has reached the final in five of six events entered.
And did we mention that Humbert will make his Top 100 debut on Monday? From No. 477 in the ATP Rankings one year ago, the Metz native is up to a career-high No. 99. He is the youngest Frenchman in the Top 100 since Richard Gasquet in 2006.
In other action, 18-year-old Felix Auger-Aliassime and 22-year-old Christian Garin both edged towards Top 100 debuts of their own, notching respective crowns in Tashkent, Uzbekistan and Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.
Auger-Aliassime became just the sixth player to lift at least four trophies while aged 18 & under. It was his first hard-court Challenger crown, having previously prevailed on the clay of Lyon and Sevilla. While the Canadian moves up to No. 109 in the ATP Rankings, Garin rises to No. 103 with his title at the Santo Domingo Open. It was his second straight triumph on the circuit, having also prevailed a week ago in Campinas, Brazil.
Meanwhile, Bjorn Fratangelo claimed his first title in two and a half years, rediscovering his top form after suffering a torn rectus femoris (quadriceps muscle). He triumphed in Fairfield, California, reeling off 10 sets in a row to lift his third Challenger trophy.
And the week also included Roberto Carballes Baena's victory on the clay of Barcelona. The inaugural tournament at the prestigious Sanchez-Casal Academy featured an all-Spanish final, with the Granada native defeating Pedro Martinez from a set down. He became the eighth player to win on both the ATP World Tour and ATP Challenger Tour this year, having captured his maiden tour-level title in Quito in February.