KUDLA THE KING IN STACKED ARIZONA CLASSIC | ATP CHALLENGER WRAP




Arizona Tennis Classic


American Denis Kudla overcame a stacked field at the Arizona Tennis Classic to lift his eighth career Challenger title and climb back into the top 100 in the world.


It was the first time in history that the 119-year old Phoenix Country Club hosted an ATP-level event and Kudla will go down as its first champion after defeating German Daniel Altmaier 2-6, 6-2, 6-3 to lift the trophy.


The tournament featured the likes of Benoit Paire, Emil Ruusuvuori, Arthur Rinderknech, Jan-Lennard Struff, Sebastian Baez, Brandon Nakashima and several other top 100 players.


Strangely, by the time the quarterfinals came around, none of the players mentioned above were left in the draw - paving the way for Kudla to pounce and claim the Challenger 125 event.


Following his triumph, the Ukrainian born Kudla had his country of birth on his mind.


"Obviously the nerves and the stress of potential airstrikes is not fun, but again, you just hope for peace, no war," Kudla said.


"It's definitely a mess. It's sad to see in this time. We just hope for the best and send all our blessings over there.”


Kudla capped off the week by lifting the doubles trophy with Filipino partner Treat Huey; defeating Germans Struff and Oscar Otte 7-6(10), 3-6, 10-6.





Roseto Degli Abruzzi 2


Frenchman Manuel Guinard has capped off an amazing week in Italy by capturing his maiden ATP Challenger singles title while also lifting the doubles crown at the4 Roseto Degli Abruzzi 2.


The world No. 161, who entered as an alternate competitor, dominated from the get-go as he waltzed through the tournament without dropping a set. It is due reward for the Frenchman who has strung some decent form together over the past month - making the semifinals at the Pau Challenger in late February where he defeated the likes of Mikhail Kukushkin and Gilles Simon.


The path to success was opened early for Guinard after all but two seeds fell in the opening round.


Guinard came up against 8th seed and world No. 159 Chun-Hsin Tseng in the final - blowing him off the court 6-1, 6-2 to lift his first Challenger title.


“I played against him six or seven months ago and it was almost the same match. It was tough at the beginning and then … I think he doesn’t like my game. I expected a tougher one today,” Guinard said following the victory.


To top off a great week, Guinard teamed up with Italian Franco Agamenone to defeat Serbians Ivan Sabanov and Matej Sabanov 7-6(2), 7-6(3) to claim the doubles title as well.




Challenger del Biobio


22-year-old Argentinian Tomas Martin Etcheverry has claimed his third career ATP Challenger title after taking out the trophy in Concepcion, Chile.


The world No. 108 endured some tough three-set matches during the week but was able to grit his teeth and come away with a title - defeating top seed and Bolivian Hugo Dellien 6-3, 6-2 in the final.


It’s a nice bit of revenge for Etcheverry, who was defeated by Dellien in the semifinals a week prior at the Challenger event in Santiago.