Jannik Sinner cruises through to the semifinal at the ATP Challenger in Ortisei - UBITENNIS
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Jannik Sinner cruises through to the semifinal at the ATP Challenger in Ortisei

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Last week’s Next Gen ATP Finals champion Jannik Sinner beat his Federico Gaio 6-4 6-4 to reach the semifinals at the ATP Challenger in Ortisei in the Italian region of Sudtyrol.

 

During this week Sinner beat Lucas Miedler, Roberto Marcora and Federico Gaio without dropping a set. The 18-year-old player coached by Riccardo Piatti is projected to improve his ranking to world number 88 in the ATP Ranking and could reach the top 80 at world number 78 if he wins the Ortisei tournament. This position would rank Sinner as the sixth Italian best ranked player behind Matteo Berrettini, Fabio Fognini, Lorenzo Sonego, Marco Cecchinato and Andreas Seppi. This year Sinner won two Challenger tournaments in Bergamo and Lexington and reached two more semifinals in Ostrava and Mouilleron le Captif.

Sinner converted his third break point chance at deuce in the fourth game to take a 3-1 lead in the first set. Gaio broke back at 15 in the seventh game and held serve to draw level to 4-4. Sinner sealed the first set with a break at love in the 10th game with a double fault from Gaio. Sinner closed the match with the only break in the 10th game of the second set.

Sinner set up a semifinal against number 6 seed Antoine Hoang, who cruised past France’s Elliott Benchetrit 6-2 6-0. Earlier this year Sinner beat Hoang 6-4 5-7 6-1 in the qualifying round in Lyon.

Austria’s Sebastian Ofner beat this year’s Australian Open Junior champion Lorenzo Musetti 7-6 (7-5) 6-2. Ofner rallied from 1-5 down to draw level to 5-5 in the tie-break, but Ofner won the final two points to win the first set. Ofner broke twice in the first and fifth games to win the second set 6-2.

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Dominic Thiem rallies from one set down against Roberto Bautista Agut to reach the final at Thiem’s 7 in Kitzbuhel

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Dominic Thiem came back from losing the first set to beat Roberto Bautista Agut 6-7 (5-7) 6-2 6-2 en route to reaching the final at the Thiem’s 7 tournament. Thiem earned two breaks in the third and fifth games to race out to a 4-1 lead. Bautista Agut got both breaks back in the sixth and eighth games to draw level to 4-4 forcing the match to the tie-break. The Spanish player won the tie-break 7-5 to take the opening set.

 

Thiem slowly found his rhythm again in the second set and earned two break points in the fourth game but he was not able to convert them. The home star dropped only two points on his serve until the end of the second set and converted two of the three break points to clinch the second set 6-2.

Thiem earned a break in the fourth game to open up a 4-1 lead and held on his next service games. The tournament organizer sealed the third set 6-2 with his double break with a blistering return on the match point in the eighth game securing his spot in the final. Thiem will face either Andrey Rublev or Matteo Berrettini in the final.

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Former Roland Garros champions and five top 20 players to highlight a great edition of the Ladies Open in Palermo

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The Ladies Open WTA International in Palermo will be the first tournament to be held next August since last February.

 

The Italian tournament will feature a great line-up which includes two confirmed past Roland Garros champions Svetlana Kuznetsova and Jelena Ostapenko and five top 20 players. There is a good chance that 2018 French Open and 2019 Wimbledon champion Simona Halep could be added in the field.

“We are glad about Simona Halep’s great interest in Palermo Ladies Open. We will be waiting for her at the Country Club for an historic edition of the Palermo tournament. We have been in contact with Halep’s manager for some time. We have been talking for days about her potential participation in Palermo. She is one of the best players in the world and her presence would contribute to make an already high-level tournament extrahordinary. We will leave our doors open to her for as long as possible, as well as for other top ten players that will want to resume their season in Palermo”, said tournament’s CEO Oliviero Palma.

The other stars who have signed up to the Ladies Open are 2019 Roland Garros champion Marketa Vondrousova, two Grand Slam semifinalists Elise Mertens (2018 Australian Open) and Anastasija Sevastova (2018 US Open), Aryna Sabalenka (winner at the Wuhan Open in 2018 and 2019, WTA Elite Trophy in Zhuhai in 2019 and Doha in 2020) and Elina Rybakina (winner in Hobart and finalist in St. Petersburg and Dubai in 2020), Dayana Yastremska (winner of three tournaments in Hong Kong in 2018, Thailand and Strasbourg in 2019).

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Lorenzo Sonego and Liudmila Samsonova lift the titles in Perugia

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Lorenzo Sonego and Liudmila Samsonova won the Zzz Quill Tennis Tour in Perugia. Sonego followed up his Italian title won the previous week in Todi with a 3-6 7-6 (7-1) 6-4 win over Croatia’s Viktor Galovic (world number 269 and number 7 seed) in the final of the Perugia tournament.

 

“Galovic started very well. It was difficult to adjust to his game and improve during the match. I maintained the right attitude and I managed to win the title. I enjoyed two fantastic weeks in Todi and Perugia. This confirmed my good work in training in the past two weeks. I gave my best and I am confident for the rest of the season”, said Sonego.

World number 117 Liudmila Samsonova won the women’s title came back from one set down to beat world number 307 Stefania Rubini 4-6 6-4 7-6 (8-6) in the women’s final after saving two match points.

“I won a very tough final with a lot of ups and downs. I am happy that I played many matches. It was one of my goals on the eve of the tournament. I showed that I am able to keep the level of my tennis high, when I play focused”, said Samsonova.   

 

 

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