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Cilic, Djokovic Doubles Highlight Tokyo's Opening Day

  • Posted: Sep 29, 2019

Cilic, Djokovic Doubles Highlight Tokyo’s Opening Day

ATP 500 kicks off on Monday

One year ago, two-time Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships semi-finalist Marin Cilic was stunned in the first round of Tokyo’s ATP 500 event. On Monday, the Croat will get a chance to get off to a better start in Japan as he pursues his first trophy at Ariake Tennis Park.

Cilic, an 18-time tour-level champion, will begin his run against an opponent whom he has never played: home favourite Yuichi Sugita. Cilic, the sixth seed, is currently No. 28 in the ATP Rankings — his lowest standing since June 2014 — but he will see this as an opportunity to push back towards the top of the sport, having ascended as high as World No. 3.

The 30-year-old has won multiple matches at three of his past four tournaments, including a run to the fourth round of the US Open, where he lost to eventual titlist Rafael Nadal. Cilic owns a 9-6 record in Tokyo.

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Sugita is not the only home favourite in action. Japanese No. 2 Yoshihito Nishioka will try to thrill the home fans when he takes to Colosseum against Portugal’s Joao Sousa. This will be their first FedEx ATP Head2Head meeting.

Nishioka is trying to earn his first victory in Tokyo. He has shown good form in the past couple of months, making the quarter-finals of the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati as a qualifier. In the final round of qualifying there, he defeated Sousa in three sets.

Sousa, on the other hand, carries plenty of momentum into the match. The Portuguese No. 1 made the semi-finals in St. Petersburg and the quarter-finals in Chengdu in consecutive weeks. Sousa made the last eight in Tokyo three years ago.

Another Japanese wild card, Go Soeda, will kick off main draw action against big-hitting German Jan-Lennard Struff. The winner will face World No. 1 Novak Djokovic.

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Struff will carry good memories of Tokyo into the match, as he eliminated Cilic last year. The 29-year-old is trying to earn his 30th tour-level victory of the season. If Struff defeats Soeda, it would be the first time he accomplishes the feat.

The last match on Colosseum features South Korea’s Hyeon Chung and Italian Lorenzo Sonego. On Rakuten Card Arena, 2018 Next Gen ATP Finals qualifier Hubert Hurkacz carries a 2-0 FedEx ATP Head2Head series lead into his battle against fifth seed Lucas Pouille.

Djokovic Begins Doubles Run
Djokovic, who is making his Tokyo debut, will begin his run in the doubles draw. The Serbian and his countryman Filip Krajinovic will face fourth seeds Mate Pavic and Bruno Soares. In other doubles action, Dominic Inglot and Austin Krajicek will battle Jean-Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau.

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De Minaur Takes Third Title Of 2019, Edges Closer To Top 20

  • Posted: Sep 29, 2019

De Minaur Takes Third Title Of 2019, Edges Closer To Top 20

Aussie dominates on serve again to win ATP 250 title

#NextGenATP Aussie Alex de Minaur would have preferred to have taken a couple of break points against Adrian Mannarino in the Huajin Securities Zhuhai Championships final. But, in the end, the 20-year-old Aussie needed to win only one to claim the ATP 250 title.

De Minaur won his third title of the season and of his career on Sunday, beating the 31-year-old Frenchman 7-6(4), 6-4. De Minaur had lost all 12 of his break points until the final point of the match, when Mannarino netted a backhand. With his third title, De Minaur creates a five-way title for second place on the 2019 tour-level titles leaderboard.

2019 Tour-Level Titles Leaderboard



Rafael Nadal


Novak Djokovic


Roger Federer


Daniil Medvedev


Dominic Thiem


Alex de Minaur


The 2018 Next Gen ATP Finals runner-up won his maiden title at the Sydney International, his home event, in January and didn’t lose his serve all week to win the BB&T Atlanta Open in July.

He was perfect on serve against Mannarino as well, never facing a break point. And the 2019 Next Gen ATP Finals hopeful stayed calm despite seeing break chances come and go. Twice Mannarino came back from 0/40 down on his serve.

The title match was a contest of steady baseliners, as Mannarino was content to rally with the more aggressive De Minaur. But the Aussie was more clutch in the big moments, coming through in the first-set tie-break and gaining another 40/0 lead on Mannarino’s serve in the final game.

The 2018 ATP Newcomer Of The Year will receive 250 ATP Rankings points and $160,550 in prize money. De Minaur is projected to rise to No. 25 on Monday when the new ATP Rankings are released.

Mannarino, who fell to 1-7 in finals, will receive 150 ATP Rankings points and $86,810 in prize money. The Frenchman was going for his second title of the season after winning his maiden crown at the Libema Open in June.

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Djokovic, Coric & Co. Thrill Japanese Fans In Tokyo On ATP Sunday

  • Posted: Sep 29, 2019

Djokovic, Coric & Co. Thrill Japanese Fans In Tokyo On ATP Sunday

World No. 1 interacts with fans at practice session ahead of tournament debut


That is how World No. 1 Novak Djokovic greeted the Japanese crowd on ATP Sunday at the Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships, where he practiced with fellow Serbian Miomir Kecmanovic in front of a near capacity crowd on Colosseum. This is the top seed’s debut at this ATP 500 event.

“[I’m] very happy to play for the first time at a new tournament,” Djokovic said on the court. “I’ve watched this tournament over the years on the TV, it’s always had the best players in the field. Hopefully this can be one of my many appearances in this tournament.”

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Djokovic had fun with the Japanese crowd, embracing all of the cheering and support. After practising for about an hour and a half, the top seed spent plenty of time signing autographs, walking along two full sides of the court to interact with the fans.

“I’ve heard a lot of positive impressions about this tournament from a lot of players, so I’m just excited and grateful to be here,” Djokovic said. “I want to thank everybody for coming out. There is such a big number today for the practice.”

There were three featured practices on Colosseum. In addition to Djokovic and Kecmanovic, Borna Coric hit with Japan’s Yosuke Watanuki and Croatia’s Marin Cilic trained with Moldova’s Radu Albot.

“It’s the most unbelievable practice of my whole life,” Coric told the crowd, in awe of the number of people.

His sparring partner, Watanuki, lost in the first round of qualifying Saturday. But he was inspired to get to practise in front of so many of his home fans with the tournament’s second seed.

“Yesterday’s loss was a tough one and I came in today slightly sorry for the fans who were in the stadium after losing. But playing with the second seed in front of a huge crowd, it was a lot of fun. I really enjoyed it,” said Watanuki, who does not believe such a mass of fans attend practice at any other event. “Probably not, Japanese fans are very special in that way.”

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How A Text From Nishikori Helped Spur Uchiyama To A Career Year

  • Posted: Sep 29, 2019

How A Text From Nishikori Helped Spur Uchiyama To A Career Year

Japanese qualifies for Tokyo main draw

The seventh time proved the charm for Yasutaka Uchiyama on Sunday.

On the six previous occasions he tried to qualify for the Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships, the Japanese player fell short. But Uchiyama, who has played the main draw twice before, advanced through qualifying for the first time, defeating Spaniard Marcel Granollers 6-3, 6-4 in the final round.

“This is very special,” Uchiyama said. “This is my first time qualifying for an ATP 500, so it gives me a lot of confidence and I feel this year I’m doing well. I’m at a career-high ATP Ranking. I feel I can do more, so it gives me confidence.”

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It’s been a banner year for the 27-year-old, who has enjoyed plenty of career firsts. Interestingly, Uchiyama began his season with a surprise. Just inside the Top 200 of the ATP Rankings at the time, he was outside of the qualifying cut in Brisbane, and only found out about a day before that he would get into the event.

So instead of remaining in Japan to continue training for Australian Open qualifying, Uchiyama hopped on a flight to Australia, got 30 minutes of practice in Brisbane the day he landed and began his season the next day. Little did he know that he would end up reaching his first ATP Tour quarter-final.

“It gave me a lot of confidence. It made me more motivated to be a better player,” said Uchiyama, who beat Ugo Humbert and Kyle Edmund in Brisbane. “Especially those two matches gave me a lot of confidence because if I play my best tennis, I can beat many top guys. It was very big for me.”

It was close to being even bigger, as Uchiyama lost his quarter-final against Jeremy Chardy in a final-set tie-break.

“I was so disappointed because if I beat him, I would have played against Kei in the semis, so I was so disappointed,” Uchiyama said. “But still, it was a great tournament for me, first time in a quarter-final on the ATP Tour.”

After his strong run, Uchiyama received a text from Japanese superstar Kei Nishikori.

“He texted me that when I play good, I can beat anyone. That gave me a lot of confidence,” Uchiyama said. “It was very, very special because sometimes I was not believing in myself 100 per cent. But after that Brisbane, I could believe in myself 100 per cent, so it changed a lot.”

“Especially Kei [inspires me]. He is a Japanese star, so he inspires me a lot to be a better player… He gives me advice for technique, for the tactics, for the mental [game]. He gives me a lot of information on other players. So it helps me a lot.”

The Brisbane result was not a one-off for Uchiyama, who qualified for his first Grand Slam main draw at Wimbledon. He then went on to claim his fourth ATP Challenger Tour title in Shanghai earlier this month.

“It’s difficult to win a tournament at any level, so making good results at Challengers a few times this year [was good], but this was special to win the tournament,” Uchiyama said. “Of course it helps me for this week to play with confidence in Tokyo.”

Read Nishioka Earns His Share Of The Spotlight

Uchiyama will face a tough test against fourth seed Benoit Paire. But the home favourite knows this is an important moment for him. Uchiyama is at a career-high No. 138 in the ATP Rankings, and he aims to push even higher.

“The Top 100 is my goal for this year. My next goal is to be playing in the Tokyo Olympics next summer, so I need to be like Top 60. So at least I need to make the Top 100 this year,” Uchiyama said. “Not many players have a chance to play the Olympics in their home country, so I really want to play in the Olympics. All the Japanese people like to watch the Olympics, maybe even more than the Grand Slams, so this is going to be very special.”

Uchiyama believes that his weapons are his serve and his forehand, and he is comofrtable at the net, as evidenced by his Tokyo title with Ben McLachlan two years ago. The Tokyo resident doesn’t think he needs to reinvent the wheel to continue his climb, just that he must use his increased confidence to continue doing what he’s been doing in 2019.

“I believe that I just have to keep going like this,” Uchiyama said. “I won a Challenger this month, I beat Steve Johnson and Marcel Granollers, who are good players. I think I just have to do what I’m doing now.”

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Vliegen/Gille Pick Up Hat Trick Of 2019 Doubles Titles

  • Posted: Sep 29, 2019

Vliegen/Gille Pick Up Hat Trick Of 2019 Doubles Titles

Belgian pairing improves to 3-1 in ATP Tour doubles finals

Belgians Sander Gille/Joran Vliegen won their third ATP Tour doubles title of the season on Sunday, beating Marcelo Demoliner/Matwe Middelkoop 7-6(2), 7-6(4) at the Huajin Securities Zhuhai Championship.

The teams traded breaks but in both sets but Gille/Vliegen were too locked in during the tie-breaks and picked up their first hard-court title of the season after winning clay-court titles in Bastad and Gstaad. The team also fell in the Kitzbuhel title match.

It’s our first time in China, so we didn’t really know what to expect. But this has been a great event, it’s been a very good week for us,” Vliegen said.

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Gille/Vliegen won 55 per cent of their second-serve return points against Demoliner/Middelkoop, who were playing in only their second event together after losing in the first round last week at the St. Petersburg Open.

I think it’s knowing exactly what the other person is going to do at a certain time in the match, trusting each other 100 per cent and knowing that each one of us is willing to work hard 100 per cent every day to get better,” said Vliegen. “I think that we never expected this when we started in 2013, of course, but I think gradually just progressing… I think we knew we hadn’t reached our ceiling yet, and we just keep working hard and [will] see where we end up.”

The team also benefits from both players living nearby each other in Belgium, Gille said.

It’s already a lot easier for practice, so we live close by in Belgium and we practise in the same place, that already helps. So every time between playing tournaments we have the ability to practise together, which helps. You can work on things together, you can take the same flights, the travel is easy, so in that regard it’s very easy,” he said.

Another thing I like is that you can speak the same language. Obviously everybody speaks very good English, but there are details and there are little things that I like to do and speak in Dutch, with him, so I think that’s a little extra.”

Demoliner fell to 1-9 in ATP Tour doubles finals, while Middelkoop is now 7-10. They will receive 150 ATP Doubles Rankings points and split $27,000 in prize money. Gille/Vliegen will receive 250 ATP Doubles Rankings points and split $52,670 in prize money.

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China Open: Cameron Norrie & Dan Evans reach main draw

  • Posted: Sep 29, 2019

Cameron Norrie and Dan Evans reached the China Open main draw by winning their second-round qualifying matches.

They join fellow Britons Andy Murray and Kyle Edmund in the first round.

Norrie, 24, beat Ukraine’s Damir Dzumhur 1-6 6-3 6-4 to set up a first-round meeting with Chile’s Cristian Garin. The winner could face Murray in the second round in Beijing.

Evans, 29, defeated Canada’s Vasek Pospisil 3-6 6-3 6-4 and will next play China’s Zhe Li.

The tournament starts on Monday.

Three-time Grand Slam champion Murray, 32, takes on Italy’s Matteo Berrettini as he attempts to win a second ATP Tour match since January following hip surgery.

British number one Edmund, who is on the same side of the draw as Murray and Norrie, faces China’s Zhizhen Zhang.

Simona Halep, Venus Williams and Naomi Osaka reached the second round of the women’s event, which started on Sunday.

Two-time Grand Slam champion Osaka said she was “really riled” after making 26 unforced errors in a 6-3 7-6 (7-5) win over American Jessica Pegula.

Osaka won the Pan Pacific Open last week, her first trophy since claiming a second consecutive Grand Slam at the Australian Open in January.

“During tournaments the first match is always the worst for me,” said the Japanese world number four.

“But I was kind of expecting it to be better because I just played really well in Osaka.”

Wimbledon champion Halep beat Swedish qualifier Rebecca Peterson 6-1 6-1 despite back pain.

Williams, whose sister Serena is not competing because of a knee problem, overcame Czech Barbora Strycova 6-3 4-6 7-5.

Meanwhile, Spain’s Pablo Carreno Busta claimed his first Tour title in two years with a 6-7 (5-7) 6-4 7-6 (7-3) win over Kazakhstan’s Alexander Bublik in the Chengdu Open final.

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Carreno Busta Edges Bublik To Capture Chengdu Crown

  • Posted: Sep 29, 2019

Carreno Busta Edges Bublik To Capture Chengdu Crown

Spaniard claims final-set tie-break victory

Pablo Carreno Busta lifted his first tour-level trophy in more than two years on Sunday, outlasting Alexander Bublik 6-7(5), 6-4, 7-6(3) at the Chengdu Open.

The Spaniard, who snapped a six-match ATP Tour semi-final losing streak on Saturday, claimed 81 per cent of service points (77/95) and withstood 31 aces from the Kazakh to claim his fourth tour-level trophy after two hours and five minutes. Carreno Busta ends a two-year, four-month wait for an ATP Tour trophy. The 28-year-old claimed his third title in May 2017 at the Millennium Estoril Open.

“This year was very tough for me because of the injuries at the beginning of the year,” said Carreno Busta. “I had [a lot of time] off the courts and it is really tough when you cannot play and enjoy this sport.

“I just tried to continue working hard because I know when you work and do as much as possible, normally you have the prize. Now I am here with the trophy [after] winning my fourth ATP Tour title and for me it is the reason to continue fighting and playing this sport.”

Carreno Busta improves to 2-0 in his FedEx ATP Head2Head series against Bublik after notching his 24th win in 41 tour-level encounters this year. In his only previous meeting against Bublik at the 2016 VTB Kremlin Cup, the Spaniard also needed a final-set tie-break to claim the win.

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After saving two set points at 4-5, 15/40, with strong serving and attacking play, Bublik edged a tense first-set tie-break. The Kazakh converted his first set point as Carreno Busta served at 5/6, chipping his return to rush Carreno Busta before placing a forehand volley into the open court.

Carreno Busta responded well in the second set, securing the only service break of the match at 3-3 to gain a crucial advantage. The Spaniard moved up the court on numerous occasions to gain a 4-3 lead and took the match to a decider with his fourth ace of the match.

With neither player able to earn a break of serve in the third set, a tie-break was needed to decide the outcome of the match. Carreno Busta surged to a 4/0 lead, attacking short balls with his forehand to end points quickly. The World No. 63 clinched the title with a crosscourt backhand passing shot before dropping to his knees in celebration.

“It was an incredible week here in Chengdu,” said Carreno Busta. “During the week I felt really comfortable on court. The surface is very fast, but I was very good with my serve during all the matches and I think it was the key to being the winner of the tournament.”

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Bublik was aiming to lift his first ATP Tour crown in his second final of the year. The 22-year-old, who fired 125 aces this week in Chengdu, reached his maiden ATP Tour championship match in July at the Hall of Fame Open.

“I am happy to be in my second final and I am happy for Pablo, he played an unbelievable match,” said Bublik.

Did You Know?
This marks the second straight year that a player has claimed his fourth ATP Tour trophy by winning the Chengdu Open in a final-set tie-break. Last year, Bernard Tomic edged Fabio Fognini 6-1, 3-6, 7-6(7) to lift his fourth tour-level crown.

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Serbian Success: Lajovic/Cacic Triumph In Chengdu

  • Posted: Sep 29, 2019

Serbian Success: Lajovic/Cacic Triumph In Chengdu

Unseeded duo lifts maiden tour-level team trophy

Nikola Cacic and Dusan Lajovic captured their first team title at the Chengdu Open on Sunday, defeating Jonathan Erlich and Fabrice Martin 7-6(9), 3-6, 10-3.

Competing in their first ATP Tour championship match as a team, Cacic and Lajovic saved two set points in a thrilling first-set tie-break before claiming the title after one hour and 41 minute. The Serbian duo’s victory against Erlich and Martin was its second Match Tie-break triumph against seeded opposition this week. In the first round, Cacic and Lajovic also eliminated third seeds Santiago Gonzalez and Robert Lindstedt.

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Cacic and Lajovic improve to 5-3 at tour-level after lifting the trophy. The title is the first ATP Tour crown of Cacic’s career, while Lajovic adds the Chengdu title to his maiden tour-level doubles trophy at 2015 Istanbul (w/Albot).

Erlich and Martin were bidding to lift their first tour-level title as a team in just their second ATP Tour event as a pairing. The fourth seeds advanced to the championship match in Chengdu with three Match Tie-break wins.

Cacic and Lajovic earn 250 ATP Doubles Ranking points and share $62,010 in prize money. Erlich and Ram receive 150 points and split $31,780.

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The Orleans Experience: French Legends, Executive Chefs & Renowned Artists

  • Posted: Sep 29, 2019

The Orleans Experience: French Legends, Executive Chefs & Renowned Artists

French culture and heritage are at the heart of the Open d’Orleans on the ATP Challenger Tour

There is little doubt that sports are a form of theatre. Take a seat at your favourite event on the ATP Tour and the entertainment value is unmatched.

As players fight for their careers, with all the glory, prize money and coveted ATP Rankings points at stake, it’s a dramatic performance in its purest form. But, while the professional tennis landscape is akin to a big theatre, it is rarely staged in one.

In the 1600s, actual tennis theatres were rather prevalent. Wooden indoor courts throughout western Europe were often converted into playhouses for various theatrical productions. In fact, with space limited, the earliest theatres in Paris were commonly placed in existing structures like tennis courts.

Today, travel an hour and a half south of the French capital and you’ll arrive at the 21st century version of tennis theatre: the Palais des Sports in the town of Orleans. With a capacity of 3,000 people, the arena is home to the Open d’Orleans on the ATP Challenger Tour.


On the Challenger circuit, the top events are ones that create a first-rate fan experience in a festive atmosphere. For many tournaments, this involves nightly entertainment, including concerts and comedy shows. In Orleans, they take this to the next level.

Enter the Palais des Sports and you’re instantly transported to a different time. The venue was built in the 1970s and that same vintage charm has been maintained over the years. It provides a unique layer of authenticity, as white-gloved ushers with their felt-covered hats greet you at the front entrance, swinging open the double doors.

It’s not quite a scene from The Great Gatsby, but it’s not far from it. As you stand in the main lobby, swing to the left and you’ll find a small lounge adorned with velvet curtains, wooden stools and large kegs used as tables. In the corner is a small bar stocked with the finest French wines and champagne. Caviar, black olive tapenade and pâté en croûte are whisked from table to table and to the adjacent, larger room which includes leather couches and chairs.

And that’s just the first stop on our tour. On the opposite side of the lobby you’ll find the entrance to the building’s three-story staircase. Lined with dramatic black-and-white photos from tournaments past, including a screaming Grigor Dimitrov, a sobbing Nicolas Mahut and a euphoric David Goffin, the stairs are covered in narrow red carpeting and sandwiched by high wooden railings. A candelabra sits elegantly on one side.

As you continue the ascent towards the players’ lounge on the top floor, you’ll pass by the venue’s premier restaurant. Tournament director Didier Gerard ensures that his showcase matches are not only held at night, but during lunchtime as well. Patrons arrive midday to socialize with friends and for meetings with clients, dine in the restaurant and step onto Court Central for a marquee showdown. And as day turns to dusk, they stroll down the red carpet that lines the sidewalk to the Open Space lounge, where more bottles of rosé and crystal flow deep into the night.

It’s a playground for high society on the ATP Challenger Tour.

But the most opulent restaurants and lounges are nothing without an elite chef. French gastronomy is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage item and Gerard’s goal from the very first edition was to integrate this into the success of his event. Every day, a different renowned chef cooks for the tournaments patrons.

The most famous is undoubtedly Bernard Vaussion, the Executive Chef for the President of France from 2004 to 2013. He served under Jacques Chirac, Nicolas Sarkozy and Francois Hollande, before retiring six years ago. Also, two chefs of Michelin-star restaurants made appearances, with Nicolas Sale cooking on Monday and Martin Simonart on Thursday. In total, nearly 4,000 meals were served during the week.


“It is always a pleasure to be here,” said Vaussion. “I help oversee all the restaurants throughout the week and how they operate. When they approached me to first do this, I wasn’t sure, but over time I have come to look forward to this week. It’s a great experience.”


The Palais des Sports, which was built on the former site of a World War II military prison, today houses an Olympic sized swimming pool, a large multi-purpose hall and 12 other rooms dedicated to various sports, including martial arts, boxing and table tennis.

And between the lines, the drama is just as palpable. Loud, theatrical music accompanies each Hawkeye challenge and the stadium lights flicker on set point, as neon winks dance from the rafters to the mezzanine. The crowd is drenched in darkness as players are dramatically announced for their walk-ons and the lights are dimmed for changeovers.

The tournament isn’t only a favourite among fans. Gerard makes sure the players are treated well too, not only implementing Hawkeye on Court Central, but providing a hairdresser free of charge throughout the week. And arguably the most unique aspect of the tournament is the trophy awarded to the singles champion. In fact, it’s not a trophy at all.

For all 15 editions, Gerard has hired a different artist to produce a painting for the winner. He noted that all the trophies he had won in his career were tucked away in his garage. Determined to make sure his event wouldn’t be forgotten by its champions, he established his own tradition. In addition, a replica of each painting is hung on the walls of the Open Space restaurant, ensuring the heritage of the tournament is preserved over time.


This year, Gerard called on the talents of young Parisian artist Oji. His painting depicts a blue tennis court on the banks of the Loire River in Orleans, with a heron standing over a few balls. Oji wanted to use the colors of the court – sky blue and navy blue – to evoke the sky and the banks of the river. He preferred to depict the city by its natural habitat rather than its typical landmarks, the Cathedral and Joan of Arc statue.


Norbert Gombos, titlist in 2017, was excited to receive his painting. “When I saw the posters throughout the city with the image of the painting, I was thinking how much I wanted to have it. Then I won the tournament, so it was really nice. I framed it and hung it over my bed, so every day I wake up and see the trophy. Nice memories come from that.”



“It’s definitely unique,” said 2014 champion Sergiy Stakhovsky. “You always have the cups and trophies, but a painting is pretty special. You can hang it on the wall and it’s something different. You don’t feel like it’s a trophy. It’s a part of your home design now and people don’t know that it’s a trophy when they walk in. There’s a story behind it. Mine is a player raising his arms and it says ’10th edition’ on it. It’s very nice.”

In addition, the event has paid tribute to the legacy of French tennis in bringing Sebastien Grosjean and Nicolas Escude as tournament ambassadors. The former World No. 4 Grosjean and No. 17 Escude return every year to lend a hand and support the tournament.

“The tournament director Didier approached me to help with the players and the sponsors,” said Grosjean. “He’s a close friend and it’s important for me to stay close to French tennis and improve the tournament. I love the game, so it’s natural for me.

“Many years ago we had Dimitrov here and now it’s guys like Ugo Humbert and Jannik Sinner, so you always see the next generation in Challengers. Orleans is one of the biggest tournaments on this tour, maybe the biggest indoor event. It’s great to see all the new players coming up. This is a great platform.”

ATP Challenger Tour 

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