Garin Powers Into Houston Final
Christian Garin is continuing to make his mark on the red clay. The Chilean advanced to his second ATP Tour clay-court final of 2019 at the Fayez Sarofim & Co. U.S. Men’s Clay Court Championship in Houston after defeating eighth seed Sam Querrey of the United States on Saturday 7-6(2), 6-2.
“The conditions today were slow and windy, which is really good for me,” said Garin. “I was really focused in the second set and I think he was a bit tired in the end, but I’m playing really well.”
The 22-year-old was two points from dropping the opening set at 5-6, but held serve and raced through the first six points of the tie-break. As Querrey’s forehand betrayed him in the latter stages of the match, Garin remained dominant on serve. The Chilean won 16 of 19 service points in the second set to advance in one hour and 23 minutes.
His road to the final hasn’t been easy. Garin was pushed to three sets in his opening match against Pablo Cuevas of Uruguay and saved five match points to defeat second seed Jeremy Chardy of France in the second round.
Garin reached his first ATP Tour final last month at the Brasil Open (l. to Pella). He also finished 2018 with a flourish by winning three straight ATP Challenger Tour titles in South America. Garin was ranked outside the Top 200 of the ATP Rankings 12 months ago, but is projected to move inside the Top 50 if he can take the title on Sunday.
He will play #NextGenATP Norwegian Casper Ruud or Colombian qualifier Daniel Elahi Galan in the championship match. Galan completed his rain-delayed quarter-final with seventh seed Jordan Thompson of Australia on Saturday and prevailed 6-1, 4-6, 6-4.
Galan, currently No. 241 in the ATP Rankings, continued to take advantage of his qualifying wild card. He upset top seed and two-time defending champion Steve Johnson of the United States in the second round.