Chiudinelli Back In Winners’ Circle With First Title In Seven Years

  • Posted: Feb 22, 2016

Chiudinelli Back In Winners’ Circle With First Title In Seven Years

Revisit the week that was on the ATP Challenger Tour as we applaud the achievements of those on the rise and look ahead to who’s in action in the week to come

Wroclaw Open (Wroclaw, Poland): Injuries cannot stop Marco Chiudinelli. After a slew of physical ailments, including arm and shoulder issues, kept the former World No. 52 outside the Top 100 of the Emirates ATP Rankings in recent years, he is now flying high with a title run on the indoor hard courts of Wroclaw. The 34 year old downed Jan Hernych 6-3, 7-6(9) on Sunday, notching his first ATP Challenger Tour title since 2009 and third in total. The Swiss has risen to the occasion in pressure moments, extending his streak of tie-breaks won to an impressive 10 straight. Also the runner-up in Manila last month, he is soaring to inside the Top 150 after starting the year at World No. 282.

Chiudinelli’s journey to merely enter the Wroclaw main draw is astounding. After losing his quarter-final the week prior in Bergamo, he found himself just outside the cut line for Wroclaw and was forced to rely on the result of another match to get in. When Pierre-Hugues Herbert beat Peter Gojowczyk in the Bergamo quarters at 11:00pm on that Friday, it gave the Swiss entry as an alternate into Wroclaw. If Herbert would have lost, Chiudinelli would not be standing with the trophy.

Morelos Open (Morelos, Mexico): Two years ago, Gerald Melzer was the last man standing on the hard courts of Morelos, claiming his maiden ATP Challenger Tour title. On Saturday, Melzer once again reigned in the Mexican city, notching a 7-6(4), 6-3 victory over Alejandro Gonzalez for his fourth Challenger crown. The Austrian continued his push to crack the Top 100 of the Emirates ATP Rankings, rising 20 spots to a career-high World No. 116. He added to January titles won in Mendoza, Argentina and Bucaramanga, Colombia, improving to 18-3 overall this year.

Delhi Open (New Delhi, India): Third seed Stephane Robert dominated the New Delhi final on Sunday, needing just 56 minutes to turn aside home hope Saketh Myneni 6-3, 6-0. It was the first ATP Challenger Tour final to finish in under an hour since Peter Gojowczyk dismissed Amir Weintraub in 51 minutes in Nanchang, China last September. Robert did not drop a set all week, winning his first Challenger title in five years, since lifting the trophy in Ostrava in 2011. A seven-time titlist on the circuit, the Frenchman is not slowing down at age 35. He recently reached the third round of the Australian Open as a qualifier, one of his best showings in a Grand Slam.

What The Players Said
Chiudinelli: “It was such an amazing week for me. It’s a great start to the year and I hope to keep it up in the coming months. My goal is to re-enter the Top 100 and I’m very happy that after a few years with plenty of physical problems, my body finally feels great again since last autumn. I feel fitter and more competitive than I did in the last few years.

“I love playing on the Taraflex surface, but unfortunately there are not many of those weeks left on the calendar.”

Tournaments in Kyoto, Japan and Cherbourg, France dot the calendar next week. The top three seeds in Kyoto are Japanese hopefuls, with Yuichi Sugita winning there in 2010, Tatsuma Ito in 2012 and Go Soeda in 2008. Meanwhile, at the Challenger La Manche, in Cherbourg, eighth seed Kenny de Schepper seeks a second title on home soil (2014). Serbia’s Filip Krajinovic leads the field.

View Draws & Watch Free Live Streams

ATP CHALLENGER TOUR ON TWITTER: New in 2016, the ATP Challenger Tour has launched a dedicated Twitter account for the latest news and information about players and events. Follow @ATPChallengerTour at

Source link