Challenger round up: Jerzy Janowicz back in form with title in Bergamo
Remember the tall Polish player who nearly beat Andy Murray in the 2013 Wimbledon semi-finals, the guy who was serving aces left and right as he cut a path through the draw? Well that guy, Jerzy Janowicz, has begun to re-emerge from a abyss of commitment and injury issues by taking the Challenger title in Bergamo this week.
Bergamo Challenger: Jerzy Janowicz defeats Quentin Halys 64 64. Janowicz completed a great week by defeating seventh seed Quentin Halys in straight sets in a final dominated unsurprisingly by serve. The Pole broke just once in each set, as Halys broke down twice late in both sets. Janowicz had defeated Maximillian Marterer, Mirza Basic, Egor Gerasimov, and Filip Krajinovic to make the final.
It was also a good week for Krajinovic, as the Serbian, once a member of the Top 100, reached the semi-finals of a Challenger event for the first time in 2017. Top seed Andreas Seppi had suffered a disastrous first round loss to Yannick Hanfmann.
Morelos Challenger: Alexander Bublik defeats Nicolas Jarry 76 64. Alexander Bublik borught himself to the wider attention of the tennis community when he qualified and reached the second round of the Australian Open, defeating sixteenth seed Lucas Pouille in the process. The Kazakhstani, the third seed in the event, took advantage of early losses for Jordan Thompson and Teymuraz Gabashvili, surviving tough matches in his opening two rounds before not dropping a set from the quarter-finals onwards against Alejandro Gomez, Eduardo Struvay, and Nicolas Jarry.
Kyoto Challenger: Yasutaka Uchiyama defeats Blaz Kavcic 63 64. The city that gave name to a famous protocol was host to a Challenger event last week, and it was a local who became a hero to the Japanese people. Yasutaka Uchiyama upset sixth seed Blaz Kavcic in straight sets, earning his first career Challenger title in Singles.
Uchiyama, unseeded at the event, defeated fourth seed Zhe Zhang, and second seed Grega Zemlja, before dispatching Kavcic in the final.
Young South African qualifier Lloyd Harris made headlines by reaching the semi-finals, defeating top seed Yuichi Sugita in the quarters.
There are two Challenger events this week, as the tour moves to Wroclaw, Poland. There is also a second Japanese Challenger, as the city that played host to the 2002 FIFA World Cup final, (Yokohama) hosts a Challenger event