Marburg Open (Marburg, Germany): Two months after prevailing at the ATP Challenger Tour event in Heilbronn, Germany, Filip Krajinovic earned his second title of the year on German soil in Marburg. The Serbian downed home favourite Cedrik-Marcel Stebe 6-2, 6-3 in the final.
The 25 year old started the year at No. 235 in the Emirates ATP Rankings, but is projected to jump to around No. 150 when the newest standings are released. Krajinovic looks to eventually surpass his career-high ranking of No. 86 in April 2015.
Despite the loss, Stebe has enjoyed a banner few months. Ranked No. 314 in May, he came through qualifying to reach the quarter-finals at the ATP World Tour event in Geneva, then prevailed two weeks ago at the Challenger in Poprad Tatry, Slovakia. Stebe will move to just outside the Top 150 when the newest standings are released, cutting his ranking in half after less than two months.
Guzzini Challenger (Recanati, Italy): Qualifier Viktor Galovic of Croatia capped a dream week with his first ATP Challenger Tour title, defeating fifth seed Mirza Basic of Bosnia and Herzegovina 7-6(3), 6-4. The 26-year-old Galovic, currently ranked No. 491, had only won three Challenger matches since February 2013 and just six in his career.
Basic was looking for his second Challenger title after prevailing this March in Guadalajara, Mexico.
WHAT THE PLAYERS SAID
Krajinovic: “It’s my third title in Germany. It’s no secret that I like to play here. I love the crowd and thank the umpires, sponsors and ball kids for their great job. It’s really well organised and with many spectators during the week. I would love to come back next year.”
A LOOK AHEAD
There are a whopping six Challenger events on the calendar next week, with the $150,000 event in Braunschweig, Germany, headlining the action. The tournament celebrates its 24th year and features an array of illustrious past champions including Alexander Zverev, Tomas Berdych, Gaston Gaudio, Alberto Berasategui and Magnus Gustafsson.
All eight seeds are ranked inside the Top 100, with Horacio Zeballos of Argentina as the top seed and Thomaz Bellucci of Brazil as the second seed. Stebe and Galovic are also in the draw and look to extend their run of form.
Winnetka, Illinois holds its $75,000 Challenger for the 26th year and 12th consecutive year. Past champions include James Blake and Jack Sock. Americans take the top three seeds with Tennys Sandgren, #NextGenATP Taylor Fritz and Dennis Novikov, respectively. Other #NextGenATP players in the draw include sixth seed Michael Mmoh of the U.S., Akira Santillan of Japan and Omar Jasika of Australia.
The $50,000 event in Medellin, Colombia, returns for the 14th year. 2011 champion Victor Estrella Burgos of the Dominican Republic, who won the ATP World Tour event in Quito for the third straight time this February, is the top seed. Darian King of Barbados is the second seed. Local favourite and 2013 champion Alejandro Gonzalez is also in the draw.
Bastad, Sweden holds its $50,000 Challenger for the second straight year. Dusan Lajovic of Serbia is the top seed and Renzo Olivo of Argentina is the second seed. Several #NextGenATP players are in the draw, including fifth seed Casper Ruud of Norway, Christian Garin of Chile and Swedish brothers Elias Ymer and Mikael Ymer. Former Top 5 player Tommy Robredo also competes this week and Krajinovic aims for another Challenger on red clay.
Lastly, the $50,000 Challenger in Perugia, Italy, returns for the fourth consecutive year. Nicolas Kicker of Argentina defeated Rola in last year’s final.
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