Lestienne, Cachin Continue 2022 Success With ATP Challenger Tour Titles
Frenchman Constant Lestienne and Argentine Pedro Cachin built upon their formidable ATP Challenger Tour season this past weekend by adding to their title haul in 2022. Lestienne, who has reached four Challenger Tour finals post-Wimbledon, claiming three titles, triumphed in Vancouver, Canada. Cachin collected his Challenger Tour-leading fourth title of 2022 on Sunday in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. Both players have won a Challenger Tour-best 38 matches this year.
Four out of Lestienne’s five matches in Vancouver went three-sets as the Frenchman extended his hot streak to 19-2 from his past 21 matches when he defeated countryman Arthur Rinderknech 6-0, 4-6, 6-3 to win the Odlum Brown VanOpen.
“I’ve continued working and fighting, and everything went on my side. I cannot believe that I’ve won so many matches in the last few weeks,” Lestienne said.
The Vancouver title marks the 30-year-old’s sixth Challenger Tour title and third this season (Malaga and Pozoblanco) and lifts him to a career-high No. 75 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings.
“Arthur (Rinderknech) is a great server, so I knew the key was to return his serve and try to engage the rally and I would have more chances to win the point. In the first set, he didn’t serve too well, I won 6-0, then it was really tight.”
Rinderknech, 27, had a gruelling week in Canada, where he rallied from a set down in his first two matches, including a second-round win against Elias Ymer after the Frenchman saved three match points. In his semi-final, the former Texas A&M University standout ousted home favourite Vasek Pospisil to set up the all-French final. Rinderknech rises to No. 58 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings, 10 spots shy of his career-high mark, which he reached in January after he was a finalist at Adelaide-2 (l. Kokkinakis).
Only two players have more Challenger titles than Lestienne in 2022: Cachin and Jack Draper (tied with four).
After rain postponed play in Santo Domingo for several hours, Cachin defeated countryman Marco Trungelliti shortly after 1am, 6-4, 2-6, 6-3 to claim the Republica Dominicana Open at Santo Domingo, presented by Milex.
Pedro Cachin has reached seven Challenger finals this year, winning four titles. Credit: David A. Martinez.
Cachin, who started the season as World No. 245, has reached seven Challenger finals this year and has been crowned champion in Madrid, Prague-2, Todi, and this week in Santo Domingo. The second seed’s title extends Argentina’s lead to 17 Challenger titles this year and lifts Cachin to a career-high mark of No. 66 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings.
In May, the 27-year-old made his Grand Slam main draw debut at Roland Garros and defeated Norbert Gombos in the first round before falling short to home favourite Hugo Gaston.
Tomas Machac won the Kozerki Open after rallying from a set down in the final to defeat China’s top-ranked player Zhang Zhizhen 1-6, 6-3, 6-2, ending Zhang’s nine-match winning streak.
“From the beginning, he was better. I didn’t take my chances on my serve, I played bad at the beginning but then I found my rhythm,” Machac said.
The Czech recently missed three months with an injury and in his second tournament back, the 21-year-old dropped just one set all week en route to capturing his second title (Traralgon) of the season in Grodzisk Mazowiecki, Poland. Machac, now a four-time Challenger Tour champion, rises to No. 126 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings.
Tomas Machac, 21, is a four-time Challenger Tour champion. Credit: JAROSLAW GASZYNSKI/FOTOJAGA.INFO
Zhang, currently on a 21-4 run from his past 25 matches, is No. 138 in the Pepperstone ATP Rankings and is two spots shy of matching his career-high (136), which he reached in 2020 and remains the highest ranking achieved by a male Chinese player.
Lestienne, Trungelliti, Machac, and Zhang will all attempt to qualify for the US Open this week while Cachin and Rinderknech are direct entries into the main draw, which begins 29 August.
Did You Know? After Borna Coric’s title at the ATP Masters 1000 event in Cincinnati, Ohio, the Croatian became the fourth player to win on the ATP Tour and the ATP Challenger Tour in 2022. Coric won the Parma Challenger in June. Holger Rune won the Sanremo Challenger and the BMW Open in Munich. Francisco Cerundolo won the Santa Cruz de la Sierra Challenger and the Nordea Open in Bastad. Lorenzo Musetti won the Forli-6 Challenger and the Hamburg European Open.
Coric is the first player to win a Masters 1000 title and a Challenger Tour title in the same season since Mikael Pernfors in 1993.