Otte Looks Back On Dream Week In Lisbon
German wins first ATP Challenger Tour title
Oscar Otte entered 2017 having not won a main draw match at an ATP Challenger Tour event, but the German continued his rapid rise up the Emirates ATP Rankings with his first Challenger title last week at the Lisboa Belem Open in Lisbon, Portugal.
“It was really difficult to play that final, so I’m happy I could make it through. It was an amazing week for me,” said Otte. “I was a little bit tougher in the head and also physically. I tried to keep the rallies quick because I used a lot of energy in the matches that week, so it was a good tactic.
“You never think you can win the title at the start of the week. It’s always match-by-match. But after the second match here, I could tell I was feeling really comfortable,” he added. “It was a very good ending for me.”
The 23 year old opened the season by winning three ITF Futures titles before making the leap into Challengers. Otte reached the final of the $125,000 event this April on Qingdao, China, (l. Tipsarevic) and also recorded a semi-final showing the following week at the $150,000 tournament in Kunming, China.
Last week in Lisbon, Otte scored his first Top 100 win over Japan’s Taro Daniel in the championship match. After beginning the year with an 0-6 record in Challenger main draw matches, he is now 13-4 at this level in 2017. The German also credited his surroundings in Lisbon with leading to a successful week.
“This was a very good level of organisation for a Challenger,” said Otte. “It’s a nice club and very pretty. The buffet each day was good for the players and the shuttle service helped a lot as well, so it was a nice week overall.”
Otte started the year at No. 523, but after his Lisbon run, he sits at a career-high ranking of No. 167. With minimal points to defend for the rest of the year, he’s already looking ahead to more Challenger wins and soon becoming a staple on the ATP World Tour.
“So many people from Germany are in the Top 100 and they’re all still ahead of me. But being in the Top 200 is still a big step for me. I’ve been looking forward to this for a long time,” said Otte. “Hopefully I can be in the Top 100 at the end of the year because I have very little to defend. Playing the big stadiums and the big tournaments is my dream.”